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blog 9 - Presentations (Day 2)

The group I chose to respond to discussed and presented sustainable technologies that will hopefully make less of an impact on the earth. These included technologies related to air pollution, water sanitation, energy, and forestry and wood.

Air Pollution
-I was surprised to find out that many technologies only take out some harmful vapors from the air (for example, the stopper on a gas pump). While this does make a big difference, it is important that we find ways to minimize pollution even more.

Water Sanitation
-The things that this group talked about related a lot to our entire project. I think this is possibly the most important piece of trying to become a more sustainable society. Millions of people live without sanitary water. One of the members of my group researched a new technology that uses UV rays to clean water, which would be a cheap way of getting usable water in areas where advanced technologies are not available.

-The question this group brought up, which I think is a very valid one, is whether or not biofuel is generally a positive or negative thing for our society. I recently read an article on this and found out that using plants such as corn for fuel actually does not reduce carbon emissions all that much. The energy and carbon that is used to convert the corn to fuel is almost as much as the amount that is emitted from a car that uses normal fuel. What is becoming more popular is thee use of sugarcane for fuel. Sugarcane grows faster and isn't used as much for solid food as corn is. And, since it is already in the form of sugar, not nearly as much energy is emitted when converting it to fuel. Brazil is a leading producer of this.

Forestry and Wood
-When it comes to forestry, our society depends on it to provide paper. The most important thing we can do as humans is to recycle paper. With rain-forests and woodlands starting to decline, it is more vital than ever that we recycle in order to minimize our impact on the earth. This group talked about how our thoughts need to change and improve more so than our technologies, which I think is a really interesting thing to think about. If we don't have the mentality that we need to work together to save our earth, then no technology is going to really make a difference.