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National Geographic

Sergey Paltsev, deputy director of the MIT Joint Program on the Science and Policy of Global Change, emphasizes the importance of reaching net-zero emissions as fast as possible. “By pushing natural gas—which is indeed cleaner than coal, but it’s still a fossil fuel that releases a lot of CO2 and more importantly, a lot of methane—we are actually hurting renewables,” says Paltsev. 

Boston Globe

Boston Globe reporter Aaron Pressman spotlights MIT startup Superpedestrian, a scooter rental service. “Superpedestrian’s scooters, packed with sensors, GPS, and a cellular connection, don’t need to be parked in a dock,” writes Pressman. “Instead, the company scatters them around cities in convenient locations.”

United Press International (UPI)

UPI reporter Brian Dunleavy writes that MIT researchers have developed a new way to potentially expand sources of biofuel to include straw and woody plants. "Our goal is to extend this technology to other organisms that are better suited for the production of these heavy fuels, like oils, diesel and jet fuel," explains Prof. Gregory Stephanopoulos.

The Hill

Prof. Ronald Prinn writes for The Hill about the urgent need for countries to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to help reduce global temperature increases. Lowering “transition risks toward net-zero-emissions economies will involve integration of both physical and transitional components, a process that requires new and improved models and frameworks,” writes Prinn. “The goal is to empower decision-makers in government and industry to lower the transition risks as an integral companion to mitigation strategies.”

The Tech

MIT has announced a new climate action plan aimed at helping the Institute tackle climate change, reports Kristina Chen for The Tech. The plan offers increased opportunities for student involvement and a new organizational structure. Maria Zuber, MIT’s vice president for research, explains that MIT feels “that it’s our responsibility and duty to try to make a genuine difference, and to do that, we’re going to need the help of everyone in the community.” 

ElectronicsWeekly.com

Researchers from the Singapore-MIT Alliance for Research and Technology (SMART) have found that twisting crystal films can be used to control light emissions from materials, reports Steve Bush for ElectronicsWeekly.com.

Fast Company

MIT startup Graviky Labs is partnering with the fashion label Pangaia to create clothing featuring graphics made from pollution sucked out of the air, reports Elizabeth Segran for Fast Company. “It’s an entirely new approach to carbon capture,” says alumnus and Graviky Labs co-founder Anirudh Sharma. “We’re literally extracting carbon particles from the atmosphere and selling it to the consumer.”

NOVA Next

Hanna Ali of NOVA Next speaks with Prof. Desiree Plata about methane emissions and Prof. Tim Swager about his work developing sensors that could allow users to “see” methane, track down its source and mitigate impacts. “You probably hear headlines all the time, ‘Everywhere we look for plastics in the environment, we find them,’” Plata says. “The same is true of most industrial chemicals, but the problem is I can’t pull out my cell phone and take a picture of [them]. Tim’s sensors are helping to close that gap.”

E&E News

A new study by MIT researchers finds that the oceans may begin emitting chlorofluorocarbons by 2075, reports Valerie Yurk for E&E News. “Even if there were no climate change, as CFCs decay in the atmosphere, eventually the ocean has too much relative to the atmosphere, and it will come back out," says Prof. Susan Solomon.

Financial Times

Financial Times reporter Michael Pooler highlights MIT startup Boston Metals, which has devised “a technology for making brand-new steel without emissions using electricity.”

CNN

CNN reporter Ivana Kottasová writes that a new study co-authored by MIT researchers finds there has been a significant drop in CFC emissions and a resumption in the recovery of the ozone layer. Prof. Ronald Prinn, director of the Center for Global Change Science at MIT, said that the results were “tremendously encouraging,” adding that “global monitoring networks really caught this spike in time, and subsequent actions have lowered emissions before they became a real threat to recovery of the ozone layer.”

The Wall Street Journal

Wall Street Journal reporter Paul Berger highlights Superpedestrian, an MIT startup and electric scooter company that secured $60 million in funding. Berger notes that Superpedestrian “spent more than four years designing a vehicle intelligence system that can diagnose and maintain itself.”

WBUR

Architects from MIT and Generate Technologies have designed Boston’s first cross-laminated timber (CLT) building, a “’revolutionary’ type of timber [that] promises to reduce emissions that cause climate change, create affordable housing and jumpstart a new job-producing, homegrown industry in New England,” reports Bruce Gellerman and Kathleen McNerney for WBUR.

HealthDay News

A new study by MIT researchers examines the environmental impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, reports Steven Reinberg for HealthDay. "If the pandemic leads to a persistent global recession, there is a real threat to the adoption of clean technology, which could outweigh any 'silver lining' in environmental benefits," says Prof. Jing Li.

The Verge

Verge reporter Justine Calma writes that states in the Midwest and Great Lakes region could see $4.7 billion in health benefits by maintaining current renewable energy standards. “This research shows that renewables pay for themselves through health benefits alone,” explains Emil Dimanchev, senior research associate at MIT’s Center for Energy and Environmental Policy Research.