Nanobamas: Teeny, tiny president-elects

By Barbara Kessler
Green Right Now

There’s science, and there’s applied science. Here’s some interesting applied science: Nanobamas. OK. We get that everything’s Obama right now. Obama-drama. Obama-rama. But nanobamas?

The scoop: John Hart, an assistant professor in the mechanical engineering department at the University of Michigan wants to expand our understanding of nanotechnology, which could be vital to developing better solar cells and batteries, disease treatments and the continuing perfecting of computer processors. Solar power could benefit from nano-thinking and already is, with experimental fabrics and even spray-on solar particles under development that could collect the sun’s energy wherever they go.

A Greener America: The next four years, the next first steps

By Barbara Kessler

The cork is off the champagne on the presidential election – and many environmentalists who’ve felt stifled by the Bush Administration’s indifference, hostility or lukewarm interest in ecological issues, including global warming, are giddy with new possibilities.

Frances Beinecke, head of the non-profit Natural Resources Defense Council, sounded buoyant in an address on the NRDC website: “Barack Obama’s election is a huge win for everyone exhausted from playing defense. Count us among them. It rekindles our hope that environmental protection may be restored to its rightful place as a treasured American value.”

Gene Karpinski, head of the League of Conservation Voters, was no less ebullient. “America embraced change today. And the planet will be better for it,” he announced.

Karpinski noted that, along with Obama, the nation also elected some environmental-minded senators, such as cousins Mark Udall (D-Colo.) and Tom Udall (D-N.M.), from a family with a long conservation history.