Do you think its right for food crops to be made into fuel for inefficient cars?
The US government has subsidised the building of ethanol plants to convert basic foods into fuel for cars. This has quickly resulted in huge increases in the price of basic foods; 40% for wheat and 90% for soya, as crops are diverted. Meanwhile Europe imports palm oil for bio-fuels, resulting in deforestation in Asia to meet demand. So far we haven't even achieved 3% of transport fuel consumption, yet already we have seen food protests around the world and expert reports of increasing hardship in poor countries.
At the same time, when we could choose efficient cars with low fuel consumption, we use inefficient cars which burn valuable fuel. Do you think this is morally defensible? What should be done right now?
The way that you think about stress can actually transform the effect that it has on you – and others.
- Stress is contagious, and the higher up in an organization you are the more your stress will be noticed and felt by others.
- Kelly McGonigal teaches "Reset your mindset to reduce stress" for Big Think Edge.
- Subscribe to Big Think Edge before we launch on March 30 to get 20% off monthly and annual memberships.
Three scientists publish a paper proving that Mercury, not Venus, is the closest planet to Earth.
- Earth is the third planet from the Sun, so our closest neighbor must be planet two or four, right?
- Wrong! Neither Venus nor Mars is the right answer.
- Three scientists ran the numbers. In this YouTube video, one of them explains why our nearest neighbor is... Mercury!
The blood of horseshoe crabs is harvested on a massive scale in order to retrieve a cell critical to medical research. However, recent innovations might make this practice obsolete.
- Horseshoe crabs' blue blood is so valuable that a quart of it can be sold for $15,000.
- This is because it contains a molecule that is crucial to the medical research community.
- Today, however, new innovations have resulted in a synthetic substitute that may end the practice of farming horseshoe crabs for their blood.
The distance between the American dream and reality is expressed best through literature.
- Literature expands our ability to feel empathy and inspires compassion.
- These 10 novels tackle some facet of the American experience.
- The list includes a fictional retelling of the first Native American to graduate from Harvard, and hiding out in inner-city Newark.
SMARTER FASTER trademarks owned by The Big Think, Inc. All rights reserved.