Floating swimming pool will filter dirty New York river water

From Superinnovators 19/02/24 US non-profit + POOL (f. 2014) have signed a historic partnership with New York State government to launch a river-sourced swimming facility, revealed last month. Set for summer 2024 for testing and opening to the public in 2025, the project received a £12.6m ($16m) investment to pilot and expand across New York. […]

Cleaning waterways with waste human hair

From Superinnovators 14/02/24 US-based public charity Matter of Trust (f. 1998) produce human hair mats and booms for urban water filtration and cleaning up oil spills. They collect donated waste human hair, which naturally absorbs oil and petrochemicals, and weave it together at their factory in San Francisco or at volunteer eco-hubs across the globe. […]

Wooden ‘LEGO block’ building technique

From Superinnovators 10/01/24 Belgian startup Gablok, founded in 2019, has developed a self-build timber-frame construction method that includes stacking 7kg modular wooden blocks containing insulation, reminiscent of LEGO. Their flat-pack kit allows you to build the floors and exterior/interior walls of your timber house but does not include the roofing and exterior finishing (plaster, brick, […]

Passive self-closing flood barrier uses floodwater to raise it into position

From Superinnovators 01/12/23 Dutch company Hyflo manufactures a patented Self Closing Flood Barrier system that uses floodwater and buoyancy to raise it in to position – once the water has gone the barrier descends back into the ground. One of the earliest deployments was in 1999 at a pharmaceutical factory in Netherlands, with Hyflo established […]

Hydroelectric power plants in Brazil threaten turtles that depend on rapids

From Estado de São Paulo 18/09/23 A research project supported by FAPESP shows that the construction of new hydroelectric power plants in Brazil’s South region could have an impact on more than 30% of the habitat of Phrynops williamsi, the Williams’ side-necked turtle. The species occurs only in areas of Atlantic Rainforest and Pampa (the […]

Flood risk: Analysis reveals destruction of global floodplains

From University of Texas at Arlington 12/09/23 A University of Texas at Arlington hydrologist’s study in the Nature journal Scientific Data provides the first-ever global estimate of human destruction of natural floodplains. The study can help guide future development in a way that can restore and conserve vital floodplain habitats that are critical to wildlife, […]

Revolutionising lithium production on a string

From Princeton University, Andlinger Center for Energy and the Environment 11/09/23 A vital component of the batteries at the heart of electric vehicles and grid energy storage, lithium is key to a clean energy future. But producing the silvery-white metal comes with significant environmental costs. Among them is the vast amount of land and time […]

New find: Glitter makeup toxic to aquatic organisms

From Estado de São Paulo 23/08/23 A study conducted by researchers affiliated with the University of São Paulo (USP) in Brazil concluded that particles of glitter can hinder the growth of organisms at the base of aquatic ecosystems, such as cyanobacteria (blue-green algae), which play a key role in the biogeochemical cycles of water and […]