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The Largest Cleanup in History

“The Ocean Cleanup develops technologies to extract, prevent, and intercept plastic pollution. The Ocean Cleanup’s goal is to fuel the world’s fight against oceanic plastic pollution, by initiating the largest cleanup in history…

The plastic pollution problem

  • Millions of tons of plastic have entered the oceans (UNEP 2005)
  • Plastic concentrates in five rotating currents, called gyres (Maximenko et al., 2012)
  • In these gyres there is on average six times more plastic than zooplankton by dry weight (Moore et al., 2001)”

Severe droughts are forcing researchers to rethink how technology can increase the supply of fresh water.

MIT Technology Review – By David Talbot on December 16, 2014 “By 2025, an estimated 1.8 billion people will suffer from water scarcity. Even in drought-stricken California, San Diego stands out. It gets less rain than parched Los Angeles or Fresno. The region has less groundwater than many other parts of the state. And moreContinue Reading

Connecting Health and Care for the Nation A Shared Nationwide Interoperability Roadmap

The Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT – “This draft Roadmap proposes critical actions that the public and private sector need to take to advance the country towards an interoperable health IT ecosystem over the next 10 years. Achieving such an interoperable system is an essential element towards HHS Secretary Sylvia Burwell’s visionContinue Reading

Preparing for Carbon Pricing: Case Studies from Company Experience

Partnership for Market Readiness. 2015. Preparing for Carbon Pricing: Case Studies from Company Experience – Royal Dutch Shell, Rio Tinto, and Pacific Gas and Electric Company. World Bank, Washington, DC. © World Bank. License: CC BY 3.0 IGO. “This report covers case studies with three companies: Royal Dutch Shell, Rio Tinto, and Pacific GasContinue Reading

FACT SHEET: President Obama’s Precision Medicine Initiative

January 30, 2015: “Building on President Obama’s announcement in his State of the Union Address, today the Administration is unveiling details about the Precision Medicine Initiative, a bold new research effort to revolutionize how we improve health and treat disease.  Launched with a $215 million investment in the President’s 2016 Budget, the Precision Medicine InitiativeContinue Reading

Surveying American Attitudes toward Climate Change and Clean Energy

“Resources for the Future has teamed up with Stanford University to conduct an in-depth survey of American perceptions of climate change and energy policies. The most recent poll was released in January 2015 in partnership with The New York Times. The survey asked respondents questions on a range of topics, including: How serious a problemContinue Reading

Libraries After Charlie Hebdo: The Threat of Violence, The Fear of Self-Censorship

Lisa Peet – Library Journal – “Although written texts often evoke strong, sometimes contentious reactions, political cartoons and caricatures can be equally incendiary. According to Barbara Jones, executive director of the Office for Intellectual Freedom (OIF) of the American Library Association. (ALA), “Cartoons are a particular problem in our office—graphic novels and books with cartoonsContinue Reading

Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction 26th Quarterly Report to Congress

Neil Gordon – Investigator, POGO: “This week, the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) released its 26th Quarterly Report to Congress. The last quarter saw great accomplishments in Afghanistan, as well as a disturbing reminder of our government’s obsession with secrecy. The final three months of 2014 marked a milestone in Afghanistan, with NATOContinue Reading

Public and Scientists’ Views on Science and Society

January 29, 2015 Public and Scientists’ Views on Science and Society By Cary Funk and Lee Rainie “Scientific innovations are deeply embedded in national life — in the economy, in core policy choices about how people care for themselves and use the resources around them, and in the topmost reaches of Americans’ imaginations. New PewContinue Reading

Privacy Board Renews Call for President Obama to End Bulk Collection

EPIC – “The Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board released a report on prior recommendations regarding the NSA’s domestic and global surveillance programs. The Board stated that the Obama Administration has failed to end the domestic telephone collection program. The Board stated, “the Administration can end the bulk telephone records program at any time, withoutContinue Reading

Banking Business Models and the Extent of Financial Crisis

Hryckiewicz, Aneta and Kozlowski, Lukasz, Banking Business Models and the Extent of Financial Crisis (January 28, 2015). Available for download at SSRN: “This study applies the k-medoids methodology and identifies various banking business models according to asset combinations and funding sources. The study determines the effects of these models on bank risk-return profiles. WeContinue Reading

White House releases new flood risk management standard

FACT SHEET: Taking Action to Protect Communities and Reduce the Cost of Future Flood Disasters “Across the country, extreme weather and other impacts of climate change are threatening the health, safety, and prosperity of our communities. This month, NOAA and NASA announced that 2014 was the hottest global year on record.  And as the planetContinue Reading