The Jordan Food and Drug Administration (JFDA) announced plans to ban the use of plastic bags starting next year. The ruling also applies to plastic containers that come in direct contact with food products (think take-away and deli counter sales).
Are grandma’s heirloom tomatoes Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO)? What about Lebanese cucumbers or the maize that Native Americans transformed from a meager ankle-high grass into long-eared mazes of golden corn? What is so scary about GMO?
New research from Israel suggests that artificial sweeteners may be making us fatter, and leave us more prone to diabetes. Here’s the scoop:
I’ve started a small water farm. But unlike my attempted and horridly failed attempts at soil farming, where worms, weeds and beetles have taken over on my small plot and my brain, I’ve seen some impressive progress on water.
China’s economy is growing exponentially. So is the needs of its population. To keep ahead of the food curve, China’s Yuanda Group just bought the Israeli company AutoAgronom for $20 million.
Free from UV light, mercury and pollutants LED lights can also save you up to 90% of the energy used by regular halogen light bulbs. But to get the most out of LED lights you need to pick the right ones for the right conditions – outside or in – hallways or rooms. Go through[.....]
Al Maktoum International Airport at Dubai World Central (DWC) was recently approved for a $33 billion expansion making it the largest airport project on the planet – another world record for the booming emirate.
Just about every week UK-based and Iraq-born architect Zaha Hadid unveils new plans for eloquent but often outrageous skyscrapers and building projects around the world. The latest is a $420 million trio of skyscrapers for Brisbane, Australia, in her words, with “design [that] tapers each structure to minimise their footprint and open the riverfront to the[.....]
British Muslims went green this past Saturday, as Muslims from all over London took part in a 100 km cycle ride from Mosque to Mosque. Muslims pray 5 times a day from dawn until dusk, and each “Salah” prayer constituted a different stop at some of London’s most iconic houses of worship, from the East[.....]
The Eilat-Eilot Renewable Energy Initiative announced yesterday that a tender will be issued to set up and operate the Timna Solar Park, a new 50 Megawatt PV Tracker solar energy field in southern Israel. This is expected to be the first phase of a 170MW project.
It’s known that if you bring people together with a common interest – music, food, or sport – everything else between them (tensions, family feuds, etc) evaporates and is secondary to the shared passion. I was lucky one day this past August to see such passion and peacemaking: there could have been sirens at any moment[.....]
Building green, thinking green, wanting to be green? Israelis from the who’s who in green building architecture, design, policy and everything else will be seen at the David Intercontinental Hotel tomorrow September the 9. The conference is run by the Israel Green Building Council or ILGBC which was established in early 2007 as a non-profit[.....]
Ebola was suspected to have spread to countries like Saudi Arabia and even by plane to the United Arab Emirates. Wishful thinkers believe it could kill 20,000 people before it’s contained. Pessimists believe that this killer virus could be a worldwide problem if it’s not stopped in its tracks.
IRENA, the global renewable energy consortia with its headquarters in Abu Dhabi believes that though the clock of climate change is ticking, we still have time to avert global catastrophes. Speeding up the adoption of renewable energy technologies is the most feasible route to reduce carbon emissions and avoid catastrophic climate change, says a new[.....]
Constant and daily power blackouts in Cairo not only make it difficult for people to go on with day-to-day routines, it can be deadly for people undergoing surgery. Egypt, while rich in natural gas and sunlight is a poor energy manager and for this its people experience hours of blackouts each and every day. This photo[.....]
An energy-efficient house in Barwa City, Qatar will be put through its paces to see if it can perform to computer-modeled expectations. We first visited the idea of Passivhaus in 2012, but much has progressed in making a new energy efficient standard green building for hot climates.
My startup flux is developing a tool to help people grow plants better. One of the immediate applications could be for helping people cultivate higher quality medical cannabis. When interviewing an advisor for my company, a cannabis master grower from the US, he told me how cannabis helps him with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) –[.....]
Travelling by rail is a great way to save gas and greenhouse gas emissions. But the Middle East is completely not mentioned in a new worldwide report on rail travel. No surprise given the ongoing conflicts and lack of future planning. We can learn from Japan and the US: Read on for the report.
Despite Israel’s dead electric car company Better Place and its venture to create an electric alternative to fossil fuel driven cars, the Israeli government is still interested in weaning most of its cars and other vehicles away from oil by the year 2025. With hanging Skypod’s in the wing, here’s the plan.
The United Arab Emirates is home to the world’s tallest building, Burj; it’s over-run by McMansions a la Arabia, and the Emirates don’t hesitate to create artificial islands out of extravagant shapes like planet earth. Now a humbler approach that mimics western trends: a cargo company in the UAE has put together 42 shipping containers[.....]
A new sketch of Abu Dhabi was just uncovered, showing a rare glimpse into the desert port before it became a super city. The sketch which reveals its most humble beginnings as a desert outpost, with tower to guard the island’s water resources is a sharp reminder of how quickly cities and empires can be[.....]
There is a growing concern that the free trade agreement between Iran and Turkey has encouraged an increase in the production and transit of drugs in the Middle East. Following the 2009 agreement to enhance co-operation efforts of land, air, and sea transportation, politicians and economic analysts have grown ever more concerned about the rising[.....]
One hundred years ago on the first of September 1914, a bird named Martha died at the Cincinnati Zoo. She was the last of what had once been the most numerous bird in the world – the passenger pigeon. How did this happen? Read more as we attempt to solve this extinction mystery.
Disruptions in food trade and marketing in the three West African countries most affected by the Ebola virus out of control have made food increasingly expensive and hard to come by, while labor shortages are putting the upcoming harvest season at serious risk, the United Nations FAO warned today.
If you have been looking for ways to cut down on your energy spending while contributing to salvaging the environment, the government has offered you an opportunity with its Feed-In tariffs (FIT) scheme.
My experience with the Turkish police was problematic. As a tourist I was accosted by a man on moped, but because the perpetrator didn’t rape me or manage to steal my bag, the police weren’t interested in my complaint. New infuriation with the police stirs: Istanbul police officer takes selfie as a man a man commits suicide[.....]
American photographer Peter Augustus has created a series of images that may change how you look at processed food and help you resist the siren call of snacking. Important images for the Middle East, where fast-food is one of the leading commercial growth sectors with junk-food-mad consumers ballooning apace with corporate profits.
The Dead Sea is an amazing place to float, meditate, and to heal your aching body. But some guys hanging out on its shores show it is an awesome place to discover natural phenomena.
There seems to be a tremendous struggle happening in the Middle East – a fight between the good guys, like this 10-year-old Emirati wunderkid, and psychotic fundamentalists (along with a host of other corrupt elements.) The good maybe overwhelmed by the very worst bad guys there could be. And then there is the boy who[.....]
Talk about being self-sufficient, but totally weird! Israeli student designer Naomi Kizhner has designed a collection of jewelry that harvests energy from veins in the human body. The project highlights in a beautiful and artful way how humanity is addicted to energy consumption. It may be a thought experiment more than anything, but these jewels provoke[.....]
Are you allowed to ride a bicycle? For Afghan girls and women, that’s a no. If they dare, people may throw rocks at them or call them unspeakable names. The Global Ride for Solidarity coming up this weekend is designed to catalyze a new cultural paradigm in the country, one that finds riding a bicycle[.....]
Maybe we’d have a little more tolerance and understanding in this world if ISIS just smoked some of the plants instead. Or maybe the plan is to smoke some of the spoils. Watch the video above as ISIS burns alleged cannabis plant fields in Syria.
The ever increasing amount of space junk makes it dangerous to pass through Earth’s orbit. Space junk can intercept and hit satellites throwing them out of orbit. But wayward satellites still able to perform may get a tow back to position thanks to a new Israeli startup. Need a lift?
While many Muslims don’t drink alcohol, the people of Batroun, Lebanon love their beer. At least according to Jamil al-Haddad, the visionary behind Colonel beer and a new microbrewery built out of recycled materials.
Are you tired of seeing the same old giant wind turbines in a field or offshore? And do you worry about their impact on migrating birds? Hooman Tahvildar Akbary from Iran has a solution that is both super efficient and beautiful.
Sometimes, design really does change lives. Dr. Amit Goffer previously designed ReWalk, a device that gives paraplegics paralyzed from the waste down mobility again. But 90 percent of handicapped people are unable to use it. In order to give quadriplegics a similar new lease on life, the Israeli designer made a few modifications with UPnRIDE.
Most Gulf countries import up to 90 percent of their food, which neither bodes well for food security no climate change – since the food that is brought in from Europe and elsewhere has a lot of what are called “food miles.” True to their name, Forward Thinking Architecture proposes a solar-powered hydroponic food belt as[.....]
Here is a cautionary tale of two very different countries which once shared a similar water use philosophy and usage patterns. The right photo is in Jordan’s Wadi-Rum desert. The forest on the left is in Ireland.
A farmer in Al Ain, the very green, flowery emirate bordering Dubai, claims that after three years of impregnating legions of nannies on his farm, his billy goat suddenly sprouted udders. And then produced milk.
Turn a sow’s ear into a silk purse (or silk scarves into a brilliant curtain) with upcycled materials sourced from your local souk. Make this patchwork curtain in under an hour and for about $10 – a little more work could turn it into a shower curtain or duvet cover. Get jiggy with junk! Here[.....]
Not everyone who visits Antalya wants to go scuba diving to see the extraordinary Mediterranean marine life, but now they can still catch a glimpse of what lives under the sea’s surface thanks to a beautiful new aquarium on the Turkish Riviera.
In any city in the world, we have all had the experience of catching a bus, subway or train only to find we don’t the right change or the right card that needs to be refilled at some Kafka-esque office we’re never going to find. An Israeli startup is stepping in and solving this problem[.....]
Zoology researchers Roi Holzman and Victor China at Tel Aviv University weren’t the first to notice that more than 90 percent of fish larvae die in the wild, and that more than 99 percent of fish won’t live to reach maturity. They are the first however, they believe, to explain why this is happening ––[.....]
The fighting in Gaza has forced farmers and herders to abandon their lands and has paralysed fishing activities, bringing local food production to a halt and severely affecting livelihoods, the United Nation’s FAO warned last week.
The deadly Ebola virus is spreading rapidly in West Africa and the main concern is its spread from its point of origin and be carried possibly to other countries, including the Middle East.
Turkish photographer Erdal Inci has created a series of GIF “selfies”, digitally manipulating images of himself whilst engaged in simple action so that he becomes, in effect, an army of street performers. Mesmerizing visuals and a brilliant way to keep production costs down. Like a carefully choreographed colony of ants, watch him/them stumble across a[.....]
Turbo.roo is a sweet little chihuahua who was born with just two front legs. The breeder gave up the puppy after realizing that he would need a great deal of special care, so a vet in Indianapolis adopted him.
An Istanbul-based design firm has teamed up with one of the fathers of vertical gardens to liven up a bespoke restaurant in the city. Autoban and Patrick Blanc from France lined an wall with lush greenery, giving the space something of a jungle aesthetic that stands in direct contrast with some of the cold hard materials inside.
Australian filmmaker Daniel Agdag is also a talented sculptor who preferences a decidedly minimalist material palette. Based in Melbourne, the artist builds whimsical flying machines with nothing but cardboard and glue — and they “only” take a month or two to make.
Here’s something you don’t see every day – a double-headed dolphin! This week the two-headed immature dolphin washed ashore in Turkey, where a sports coach alerted authorities.
As we witness another super-moon and other celestial wonders, we might be reminded of folk tales of werewolves and beliefs that moon phases and astrological birth signs have influence over our lives.
HONY caption: “There were dozens of them and only four of us. They took all my sheep.” (Dohuk, Iraq)