Saturday, October 22, 2011
The World Bank estimates that over 1.6 billion people depend on forests for thier livelihood and the worth of forest products traded in internationally in 2004 was estimated at US$327bil.
Forests are complex ecosystems that give us:
Products: Food, freshwater, fuel, fibre, biochemicals and genetic resources.
Regulating services: Climate regulation, disease regulation, water purification and pollination.
Cultural services: spiritual and religious, recreation and ecotourism, aesthetics, inspiration, educational and cultural heritage.
Supporting services: Soil formation, nutrient cycling and primary production.
The United Nations estimates that about 1,300sqkm of forests are lost globally every year due to conversion to agricultural land, unusustainable timber harvesting, unsustainable land management practices and poor land use planning.
According to the State of the worls'd Forest 2011 by the Food and Agriculture Organisation, forests cover just over four billion ha or 31% of earth's land area. Of these, primary forests (Undisturbed native natural forests) make up for 36% but have reportedly decreaed by more than 40 million ha in the past decade. In contrast, planted forests have grown in size and now accounts for close to 7% of total forested areas.
Tuesday, October 18, 2011
When the ground temperature is still cold. The reason is the colder the ground is, the more dense the petrol is! When the ground gets warmer " petrol expands,so buying in the afternoon or in the evening returns lesser litre you ore buying.
2 Fill up when your tank is half full
The more fuel you hove in your tank the less air occupying its empty space. petrol evaporates faster than you con imagine. Petroleum storage tanks have on internal floating root. This roof serves as zero clearance between the petrol and the atmosphere, so it minimizes the evaporation.
3. Don not squeeze the trigger of the nozzle to a fast mode when you are filling up petrol
In slow mode you should be pumping on low speed, thereby minimizing the vapours that are created while you ore pumping. ,
All hoses at thepump hove o vapour return. If you ore pumping on the fast rate, some of the liquid that goes to your tank becomes vapour. ,
Those vapours ore being sucked up and back into the underground storage tank so you're getting less worth for your money.Make every drop
counts - don't pump until the tank overflows; you pay for the petrol. Always tell the attendant to set the pump to auto-stop.
4. Start up the car properly
With today's cars, it is not necessary to prime the engine first by pumping the accelerator pedal repeatedly. Do not crank the engine excessively. This only wastes fuel.When starting the engine, idle it no more than 30 seconds to warm it up. An engine will worm up foster on the rood.
However, avoid sudden accelerotion before the engine has warmed up sufficiently.
5. Do not fill up, If there is a fuel truck pumping into the storage tanks
The petrol will be stirred up and you might pick up some of the dirt that normally settles on the bottom.
Saturday, July 04, 2009
Nowhere is global warming felt more acutely than in the Himalayas, where ice and snow are retreating
Nowhere is global warming felt more acutely than in the Himalayas, where ice and snow are retreating.
By SAM TAYLOR
STANDING in the Himalayan valley of Langtang, Rinjin Dorje Lama remembers where he used to play as a child in the 1960s.
"When I was a kid, it was a lot longer," said Lama, pointing at the Lirung glacier surrounded by snowy peaks on Nepal's northern border with Tibet. "We used to play on the, glacier, and it came right down to the monastery, but now it's about 2km further back."
Temperatures in the Himalayas are rising by around 0.06~C annually, according to a long-term study by the Nepalese department of hydrology. The rate is far above the global average given last year by United Nations scientists, who said surface temperatures have risen by a total of 0.74C over the past 100 years.
"I don't really understand why the glacier has gone so far back, but I am told it's due to global warming," said Lama, whose weather-beaten face makes him look older than his 57 years.
Lama has witnessed other changes in the roadless valley, 60km northwest of Kathmandu, where sure-footed ponies remain the quickest form of transport. "I feel that the sun is getting stronger, and in the past there used to be a lot more snow in winter. We used to get up to 2m in the winter, and it would stay for weeks. Last winter we only had 2cm."
On top of unpredictable weather, other dangers are increasing in Nepal's mountains because of climate change. As the meltwater flows off the glacier, lakes begin to form and grow. When the pressure becomes too great, the lake walls burst and release millions of cubic tonnes of water that can wash away people, villages and arable land.
Researchers at the Nepal-based International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) have said five major glacial lake floods have hit Nepal since 1970, as well as at least two in Tibet and one in Bhutan.
Ang Tsering Sherpa, who grew up in Nepal's Everest region, has observed the growth of one glacial lake with growing concern. "A small pond first appeared close to the Imja glacier in about 1962," said Sherpa, who owns a trekking and expedition company in Kathmandu.
Last year, a research team from Japan meas- ured the Imja lake as being 1.Tkm, 900m wide and 92m deep.
"If that lake bursts, it will be like a tsunami," said Sherpa, who estimates that the Imja glacier has been retreating at a rate of 60m per year. "Imagine the damage that will be caused by a lake emptying within minutes into a well-inhabited valley. The loss of life will be huge."
The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) calculates there are 2,000 glacial lakes forming in Nepal and around 20 are in danger of bursting.
Mountain dwellers are seeing at first hand the effects of global warming, but the changing climate will eventually have dire consequences for a much wider section of Asia's population.
Himalayan snow and ice is a massive freshwater reserve that feeds nine of Asia's major waterways, including the Indus, Ganges and Yellow rivers.
"In the long term, water scarcity will become a big problem," said Sandeep Chamling Rai, WWF climate change officer. "There will eventually be a tipping point where the amount of water from the glaciers is hugely reduced, which will result in loss of water resources for people downstream who rely on these Himalayan-fed rivers."
The ICIMOD said in August last year that climate change posed a serious threat to essential water resources in the Himalayas, putting the livelihoods of 1.3 billion people at risk.
Back in the Langtang Valley, where around 700 people and 4,000 yaks live, Lama can only watch as the ice and snow retreat from around his home.
"I am very worried, but what can we do. We are not contributing to global warming but we feel its effects. I am scared there will be no snow and ice in these mountains within the next 15 years."- AFP