This biotech startup is cleaning up laundry detergent

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Dirty Labs wants to solve the problem of water-polluting chemicals common in laundry detergents. When a typical laundry detergent washes down the drain, it carries chemicals such as 1,4-dioxane, a likely carcinogen that can’t be removed by standard water treatment plants and that can end up in drinking water. Other common ingredients, such as the somewhat unpronounceable methylisothiazolinone or benzisothiazolinone, can harm the environment. These chemicals have various purposes; methylisothiazolinone is a preservative, for example. Dioxane isn’t used in detergent intentionally but is a by-product of another process. A biotech startup called Dirty Labs is taking on the challenge of cleaning up such cleaning products. Read Full Story

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This low-cost water filter runs on just sunlight

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The sponge-like membrane removes more toxins than a typical water filter, and then releases clean water when heated by the sun. In the future, the solar panels on your roof might sit next to rain-collecting panels that automatically purify water using sunlight, and then send the water into your plumbing. It’s one potential application for new low-cost technology developed at Princeton that can purify water off the grid. Read Full Story

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Here’s how much it would cost to move every home in the U.S. to zero-carbon energy

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What would it take for every household to fully decarbonize? A typical American household runs on fossil fuels: natural gas for heat, hot water, and the kitchen stove, gas or diesel to power the cars in the driveway, and coal and natural gas still powering the majority of the electricity flowing in the home, even as the amount of wind and solar on the grid quickly grows. Read Full Story

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The Trump administration officially rolls back Obama-era fuel efficiency standards

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The SAFE Rule will drastically lower how much automakers need to improve on fuel efficiency year-over-year. In a blow to efforts to curb greenhouse gas emissions, vehicle gas mileage standards will now officially be significantly lower than those instated by the Obama administration, after the Department of Transport and the Environmental Protection Agency announced today the confirmation of a new series of standards for fuel efficiency, under a rule called SAFE, for “Safer Affordable Fuel-efficient vehicles.” Read Full Story

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