Scientific News

Mangroves are essential to protect coastlines from flooding and should be protected

The mangroves, with their intricate development, act as barriers and reduce annual flooding at the most critical points around the globe. Another new study underlines the positive aspects of this plant and its intrinsic and particular growth capacity in relation to savings, in terms of billions of dollars per year, which allow the reduction of flood risks.

The study, published in Scientific Reports, highlights how these plants are even more important today, and in the near future, due to the ongoing climate change that is actually increasing the risks of coastal flooding caused by rising sea levels and the increasing intensity of hurricanes.

Researchers have considered more than 700,000 km of coastline around the world by creating models and analysing flood risk and the benefits of this plant.
The results show that mangroves actually reduce flooding and that more economic incentives would be needed to protect these plants.

“Now that we can assess these flood protection benefits, all kinds of new opportunities are opening up to finance mangrove conservation and restoration with savings for insurance premiums, storm reconstruction, climate adaptation and community development,” says Michael Beck, professor at the Institute of Marine Sciences at the University of California at Santa Cruz, one of the authors of the study with Pelayo Menéndez, his colleague at the same institute.

The mangrove tree is a plant that is widespread basically all over the world, but many of them have been destroyed or have died for activities such as aquaculture and coastal development in general, a development that often sees the construction of infrastructures right near the areas where these plants are born and grow.

Just think of the case of Florida: since the beginning of the last century the intense development near the coasts of this American state has caused a contingent loss of real mangrove forests. This loss has resulted in more floods and floods.

The most positive characteristic of these plants is that they are resistant and can grow like weeds, even in the middle of the city, if given “half a chance”, as Beck himself explains.

Scientific News

Finally An Honest Guide For Using CoinSpot!

CoinSpot is an Australian cryptocurrency exchange that claims to have the largest amount of cryptocurrencies to trade out of all Australian exchanges. That may be true, but is it actually a good exchange? That’s the question that this excellent CoinSpot review seeks to answer, and the the answer is that CoinSpot is only good if you’re sticking to its “Markets” screen! The buy, swap and exchange features on it are grossly expensive, and you’ll be paying out the nose in fees. So before you use CoinSpot, you’d better be aware of the fees they will charge you if you use the wrong screen!

Scientific News

New membrane produces 100 times more energy from seawater

A new membrane which, according to the press release presenting the study published in Nature Nanotechnology, “can produce one hundred times more energy from sea water”, was created by a group of chemists from the University of Leiden. The new membrane is ultra-thin and only one molecule thick.

It is a membrane that, once introduced into the water, can absorb the energy coming from the particles moving from one side to the other, which happens very easily when salt water comes into contact with fresh water because there is an exchange of salt. This is the same process that is usually used to desalinate sea water.

The new membrane developed by the chemists in Leiden, however, is much more efficient because it produces 100 times more energy than “classic” membranes.

The membrane is made of carbon and is porous and thin at the same time, unlike the more common membranes which are either porous or thin.

The membrane was created by spreading oily molecules on the surface of the water. It then formed a film which, once heated, saw the creation of a stable porous membrane.
“The membrane we created is only two nanometres thick and is permeable to potassium ions. We can modify the properties of the membrane using a different molecular block. In this way we can adapt it to meet any requirement,” says Xue Liu, one of the authors of the study and the creators of the membrane together with his colleague Grégory Schneider.

The new membrane is similar to graphene but at the same time different from this material, as Schneider himself explains: “When making a membrane, many researchers start with graphene, which is very thin but not porous. Then they try to drill holes to make it more permeable. We did the opposite by assembling small molecules and building a larger porous membrane from those molecules. Compared to graphene, it contains imperfections, but that’s what gives it its special properties.