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)
Bernard Khoury is one of Lebanon’s most sought after architects, and now he has built his own home – a rooftop penthouse bam smack in the middle of Beirut.
This year’s lineup of five “supermoons” may put a sky-watcher to sleep. There were the new moons of January and February, followed by one on July 13th. So if you glimpsed one of those, did you catch another on August 10th (and the final act that happens on September 8th)? Because last night’s moon was the closest[.....]
The prospect of climate change sparking food and water shortages in the Middle East is less likely than previously thought, with new research by an Australian climate scientist suggesting that rainfall will be significantly higher in key parts of the region.
Sunni fighters from the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) took over Iraq’s largest hydroelectric dam last Sunday, along with three towns and an oilfield according to the commander of the Peshmerga Kurdish fighters who had been defending the facility. Facing minimal opposition, ISIS seized control of Mosul Dam after a 24-hour battle. Workers remain[.....]
More than 100 graffiti artists were invited to Tunisia as part of the Djerbahood project – an inventive rehabilitation initiative that uses street art to turn a dusty village into an inspiring open air gallery.
An Israeli industrial designer has created the world’s first “Social Gas Mask” whose sleek space-age form allows for less hindered swapping of facial expressions. In a crisis (which is pretty much any time a gas mask is needed), who wouldn’t want better visible access to other people’s faces?
Personal grooming can be murderous! That’s the takeaway message of a two-century-old crime and modern women are taking note, inciting others to join their cause on Instagram, Facebook and Tumblr.
In 2011, scientists warned that giant plumes of methane gas could fast-track planetary warming. And now – a version of this prediction has come to pass in Siberia. Despite being at the “ends of the Earth,” Yamal Peninsula’s three methane craters contain a cautionary tale for us all.
Is there anything worse than being in a hot city with cars idling, kicking up heat and pollution? We don’t think so, and apparently Erick van Egeraat agrees. The city of Unaizah has approved Egeraat’s plans to build a massive ring road around the city, as well as an underground street.
To date the most efficient way of making solar cells is using silicon. Now a team of scientists at the University of Sheffield in the UK is the first to fabricate perovskite solar cells using a spray-painting process – a discovery that could help cut the cost of solar electricity.
Pull free, safe drinking water straight from the sky!
The Rose of Jericho (in this case Latin name Selaginella lepidophylla) is a type of desert moss found in Israel and Jordan which has the ability to quite literally ‘resurrect’ itself after extreme bouts dehydration, sometimes for years. Christians therefore call it the Resurrection flower.
Street art helps the young generation cope with discontent and dissent- making space for fresh ideas, while preserving old values. At least that’s how we see it in this fantastic series of Tunisian murals which take the old Arabian domed style architecture in Tunisia and playfully interacts with it.
Israeli designer HIlla Shamia has found a way to mix “oil and water” or aluminum and wood – two materials I’ve never seen fused together. The product designer has created a novel way to meld both poured aluminum with irregular wood chunks to create modern tables and benches with a warm industrial feel. Old world[.....]
Israel’s Hiriya Park, also known lovingly and totally sarcastically in some circles as shi*t mountain, is the one thing you’ll notice driving from the airport to Tel Aviv. It used to be where where Tel Aviv sent all its stinky trash, and baby diapers. Now it’s becoming Tel Aviv’s Central Park.
Tunisia offers other-worldly landscapes, fantastical and mysterious. Did you know that four of the Star Wars movies were partially filmed in the southern part of the country? (Tunisia had a starring role as the planet Tatooine). Now, adding to the Atlas mountains and Sahara desert, the tiny republic has another tourist attraction – a newborn lake.
Two years after passing its Renewable Energy and Efficiency Law (REEL) Jordan is moving forward with what will be the largest largest solar photovoltaic (PV) installation in the Middle East. Construction will begin on the 52.5 MW Shams Ma’an facility in early 2015 with completion in 2016. Shams is the Arabic word for “sun”.
Forward Thinking Architecture has designed floating farms for Singapore, a country that shares many of the problems we have in the Middle East – food insecurity, lack of land, and a rapidly growing population. We think this design might be appropriate for our region as well. A subsidiary of JAPA, an ideas lab, Forward Thinking[.....]
As if the Middle East hasn’t already had problems with serious infectous diseases, such as Mid East Respiritory Syndrome (MERS), an even more deadly virus, Ebola, may now be on its way there as well. Ebola is one of the world’s worst virus scourges and is now on the verge of becoming an international pandemic, according to World Health[.....]
The United Arab Emirates has passed resolution 500 in an effort to curb shark finning and protect endangered species. Currently a hub for the shark trade, the UAE will implement the new laws on September 1, 2014.
After going several months without, I’ve fallen back into the habit of ‘needing’ at least one cup of joe to wake up, and I know I’m not the only one. Cue Barisieur from Britain’s Joshua Renouf.
The most spectacular Islamic religious architecture and interior design is something few westerners have experienced. Mohammed Reza Domiri changes that, at least a bit, with extraordinary photography. Using an extreme wide-angle lens, the young Iranian unveils a world of color, geometry, and beauty we can only dream of.
With several of the Middle East’s city-states becoming some of the world’s richest locations, it’s little surprise that an increasing number of people, particularly from the west and Far East, are looking at investment options in the region. Twinned with this however, is surge in investors looking for more ethical opportunities for their money. Trading[.....]
Why should affordable Dream Homes be limited to Barbie dolls? Design your own fantasy shack from the comfort of your keyboard with California-based Blu Homes – makers of fully customizable, prefab, green housing.
While solar power plant installations jump to a new annual record this year, according to the Worldwatch Institute, global trends show that despite all the batabata bing bing (announcements, agreements, tea ceremonies, hand-shaking), the Middle East is doing miserably in taking advantage of the sun –– one country is the exception there and it is Israel.
We’re all over bicycles as the best green alternative to getting you where you want to go. News about bike-messenger schemes in Beirut, dedicated bike lanes in Jericho, and affordable bikes made of cardboard get our wheels spinning every time. So we’ve loving this simple way to eliminate one of the biggest obstacles to bike riding for[.....]
With so much conflict erupting around us, it’s hard to imagine a peaceful future, but Erdem Architects does a good job of it. The Turkish firm recently won an international design competition with their proposal to turn an area of the Italian city La Spezia, historically used to host the city’s war arsenal, into a series of serene peace islands.
The United Arab Emirates has now become a very popular holiday destination, boasting dry, hot weather for much of the year. Although the climate may be appealing to tourists, the United Arab Emirates has much more to offer than sun, sand and sunbathing. 1. Natural Attractions As well as the modern, built up cities, the[.....]
Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA), the electric car company founded by Elon Musk, will be releasings its earnings statement next week and call it kismet or good planning, but Tesla has more good news: its partner Mobileye (NYSE:MBLY), the company that will be giving it driverless technology, said it will open on the New York Stock[.....]
When we first presented the solar-powered woven refugee shelters that have now been seen all across the world, many people suggested they’d also make great festival tents. Well, now we’re wondering the opposite. Could these B-and-Bee shelters designed for Belgium festivals provide temporary housing for refugees in the Middle East?
Not great news for mothers-to-be who live in cement-enroaching cities like Beirut: according to a new study pregnant women living near green urban spaces will deliver babies with higher birth weights. Time to start planting trees?
Two credible scientific datasets are suggesting that Earth, like George Clooney or Elle MacPherson, is getting hotter with age. Buckle your seat-belts and let the Climate Change debate begin!
Allergic to home improvement? Here’s an easy DIY chore you shouldn’t sneeze at. It will clean your air, increase its “coolness”, and save you buckets of money to boot. Change your air conditioner filters!
Luxor home to some of Egypt’s greatest temples has something to solute over: the city has started its first 80kW solar energy plant, worth about $530,000 US to power lights at Luxor University and surrounding streets.
Have you ever read an online story where the comments best the content, turning your idle news-scanning into a mini-meta experience? A recent piece on some new bike-safety gear caught our eye – (what’s not to love about designs to encourage pedal power!) – but it was the readers’ response that snapped the story into perspective.
Israel and Hamas agreed to a 12-hour ceasefire in Gaza yesterday, a brief respite from the escalating violence that is testing the capabilities of relief agencies already strained by four years of Syrian war and renewed battles in Iraq. It’s a half day opportunity to park politics and take humanitarian action. Want to make a difference? Jump into[.....]
Iranian architecture has evolved over the years – like everywhere – and the new generation of designers are producing truly impressive work. Take the extraordinary Sharifi House by next office. In order to maximize space, flexibility and daylight, the design team inserted semi-mobile rooms that rotate with the push of a button.
There are roughly 150,000 stray cats and dogs in Istanbul alone, and with so many other problems to deal with, city officials aren’t likely to make them priority. One Turksih company came up with a brilliant solution to feed some animals and recycle plastic at the same time.
How would you like to save money by no longer paying electric bills? There are several ways in which this can be accomplished. The first option is to go completely off the grid, and choose not to use electricity of any kind. This may not be suitable for the average person and will definitely not[.....]
Some workplace environments are naturally going to be considered more dangerous than others, meaning that someone working in an industrial or agricultural occupation is likely to be more exposed to dangerous working conditions than a person working in an administrative role in an office.
An exciting tourism project is set to promise a bright economic future for Saudi Arabia.
Confirming what we’ve known all along, the consumption of beef is much worse than a vegetarian diet, and also worse than eating other animal meat products like pork and chicken, a new study from Israel confirms.
If you live in the Middle East, surely you are accustomed to seeing plastic bottles lining city streets and even far-flung desert areas. While a tiny fraction of these might be recycled in some countries, most of them will languish for years in informal and formal landfills.