It was a story that was too good to pass up. The Svalbard "doomsday" seed vault had flooded because of global warming-induced high temperatures melting the surrounding permafrost. But according to one of the vault's creators, the reports are pretty overblown and everything's fine. Well, the vault's fine. The apocalypse is still ticking along nicely.
Tagged With water
Water has some special properties you've surely heard about in high school chemistry. Most notably, it sticks to itself really well. It beads together, looks like this in space, and climbs up plants' vascular systems, all thanks to hydrogen bonds. Now, scientists have figured out exactly how sticky those ubiquitous bonds are.
You might think space is the final frontier, but there's an entire alien world beneath the sea. Exploring the deepest abysses even looks a lot like exploring outer space. So, we set up some time with Fabien Cousteau, aquanaut, Jacques Cousteau's grandson, and arguably the ocean's biggest fan, to chat about what it's like. Cousteau organised a 31-day mission underwater to the Aquarius lab back in 2014.
Today, President Trump signed an executive order aimed at reworking Obama-era protections of clean water. The order asks for a revision of the 2015 Water of the US Act, a move likely to thrill Trump's supporters in the fossil fuel industry and big agriculture, and confuse just about everyone else. The order doesn't outright repeal WOTUS, it simply signals new EPA head Scott Pruitt to begin the process of revising and rewriting the law.
As if the ocean wasn't already full of nightmares, researchers at MIT have developed a soft and flexible robot made of hydrogel, a material composed mostly of water. The new bot is quick, strong and almost completely invisible when submerged, allowing it to snatch up fish before they even realise they're being tracked.
So Sodastream — a company that is all about making water that is not fizzy, actually fizzy — has just unveiled Shame or Glory, a three minute long advertisement featuring Sodastream CEO Daniel Birnbaum alongside Game of Thrones' Hannah Waddingham (who played Septa Unella, AKA that lady who shouted "SHAME" a lot) and Thor Bjornsson (Gregor Clegane, AKA The Mountain, AKA that big fella who lifts heavy things when he's not being on Game of Thrones). It's part of an attempt to stop people buying bottled water and switch to drinking tap water, to help protect the environment — noble! — and also, presumably purchase more Sodastream products — significantly less noble!