Human feces from the developing world could power millions of homes

Almost a billion people in the developing world have no access to toilets and defecate outdoors (such as these children in Bangladesh). But that waste shouldn’t go to waste, a new study argues: Rather than tainting the environment and transmitting disease, it could actually be harnessed to heat or power millions of homes. If all the openly defecated human waste were instead deposited in latrines—and the sludge were then collected and heated in kilns at temperatures exceeding 300°C (572°F) to produce charcoal-like briquettes—it would yield up to 8.5 million tons of charcoal, according to a report released today by the United Nations University Institute for Water, Environment and Health.

Não é como se você nunca estivesse aqui. Mas às vezes, você some de uma hora para a outra, sem dizer por quê ou por quem. O que me faz pensar que talvez você nunca queira estar aqui. E é por isso que dessa vez te deixo ir. Não adianta segurar quem não quer ficar, por que de uma forma ou de outra, a gente não pode segurar essas pessoas por muito tempo. Elas tem de que querer, querer muito ou pouco, não importa. Mas eles têm de querer. E você não quer, e é por isso que te deixo ir. Dessa vez vá, mas não ouse olhar para trás, eu não vou está mais aqui.
—  Stefany Garcia.

How massive amounts of garbage finds its way to the world’s oceans

We’ve all seen the horrifying images of the great Pacific Garbage Patch, but where does all that plastic come from?

A recent study, conducted in part by UC Santa Barbara researchers, set out to trace the origins of this refuse and map its meandering journey out to sea.

Altogether, researchers found, some eight million metric tons of plastic makes its way each year to the world’s oceans. That amount will likely double in the next decade if no action is taken, researchers said. On the other hand, simple efforts to improve disposal of plastics could significantly curb the problem, cutting the amount of marine waste by more than 40 percent annually.

See the other research stories that got the world buzzing in 2015

I hate it when girls or boys will break up with their girlfriend or boyfriend or whoever, and then they say shit like “seven months of my life wasted” or shit like that. No. At some point of your life you wanted to be with them more than anyone else. You missed them at night. You cried when you were scared for them. You told them how much you loved them in long paragraphs for no reason. Honestly. Just because those feelings are over now does not mean it was a waste