History of Asbestos Use

Historically, as well as being used by the Greeks, asbestos was also widely used in Persia, where many believed it came from the fur of an animal, and in China, where there is some evidence to suggest it was used for shrouds and funeral garments.

Asbestos was known to have been used woven into cloth right through the Middle Ages and into the 18th Century but it was not until the Industrial Revolution in the 19th Century that its use grew rapidly as it started to be used in the burgeoning factories as an insulating and fire-resistant product.

Asbestos is found naturally in many parts of the world including the North American, Eastern European and African continents. The mineral is extracted from rocks by crushing them and then milling the crushed rock to produce raw asbestos fibres.

Commercial mines began to be developed in the late 1800’s and by the middle of the 20th century asbestos was being widely used in the construction industry not just as a fire-retardant and insulating material but also in concrete, bricks, pipes, flooring and roofing. It was also widely used in the ship-building industry in boiler, engine and turbine parts, and in brake pads and clutch discs for cars and many other vehicles. For a short while in the mid-fifties asbestos was even used in the filter tips of some brands of cigarette.

But although asbestos was still being widely used up until the 1970’s, warnings of the hazards to health, particularly in asbestos mining towns, were already being published as early as the 1930’s. Medical research at that time had started to reveal a connection between prolonged exposure to asbestos fibres and lung diseases although the early deaths of young people in asbestos mining towns had been noted many years earlier.

Huge amounts of asbestos were used during World War II by the US Navy in the building of ships, even though the dangers to health were already publicised and it wasn’t until many years later and into the beginning of the 21st century that all forms of asbestos were finally banned in the UK, US, Australia and many other countries. Buildings that contain asbestos have sprouted an entire industry of companies like Fresh and Clear who conduct asbestos removal at Perth buildings and homes, luckily they stopped using asbestos in 2003 in construction in Australia. Unfortunately, not all countries have yet banned the mining, export or import of the chrysotile form of asbestos. Canada continues to mine and export chrysotile to developing countries in Asia such as India, Indonesia and The Philippines.

So while more than 107,000 people die each year from asbestos-related lung cancer and mesothelioma, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO), some countries continue to ignore the extremely serious risks that asbestos exposure poses to human health. Since the time of the ancient Greeks warnings about the health risks of asbestos have been ignored and they continue to be ignored today in some parts of the world.

The properties of asbestos that historically made it a useful material (its strength and its resistance to heat, electricity and chemical erosion) mean that there is still demand for it in certain countries. Even in countries where it’s use is now banned, commercial and residential buildings constructed as late as the 1980’s can still contain a whole variety of asbestos products such as industrial roofing, asbestos cement walls and asbestos roofs on outbuildings.

The largest solar farm in the U.S (for now)

After a great response about the solar farm video last week. We thought we’d post this other video we came accross.

This 290 Megawatt Solar farm based in arizona will supply power to the State of California over the next 25 years under an agreement with the energy provider Pacific Gas and Electric.

The farm consists of over 5,000,000 photovoltaic modules scattered over roughly 10 square miles. Procucing enough energy to 230,000 residences.

These videos do make me feel all warm and fuzzy.

Video: Solar Farm in Halifax County

This inspiring video comes from a Solar farm in Halifax County, North carolina.It’s the biggest solar array ever installed in North Carolina.

The farm went live in 2014, before that Geenex had been working on building the farm for 2 years, the video shows them flipping the switch.

Once they fillped the switch it was producing 95% of required power at 10.30am in the morning!!

Biggest Contributors to Climate Change

Recent years have been characterized by major climatic changes. The climate is changing dramatically. This is shown through the unpredictable rain patterns. The expected rains are not received as they used to before. The rainfall is experienced earlier or later than the expected period. This is affecting economic activities that rely on rainfall. Economic activities such as agriculture. The temperatures that are becoming so hot also indicate adverse changes of the climate. Particular regions are experiencing higher levels of temperature than they used to. This leads to the question. What are the biggest contributors to climatic change? Here are some of the biggest contributors to climatic change.

Greenhouse gases

Many researches done mostly point to greenhouses gases being the biggest contributors to climatic change. These are gases that behave like a blanket. The blanket is a thermal blanket that covers the earth. The gases absorb heat from the sun. The greenhouse gases then trap radiating heat that is moving from the earth. These gases prevent the heat from escaping from the earth’s atmosphere. When this happens the greenhouse gases cause global warming. This is what is referred to as greenhouse effect.

Global warming is a major cause of climatic change. It accounts for most of the dramatic climate alternations. The increased temperature may increase the level of the sea by melting the frozen water. The sea level may also be increased by water expanding due to increased levels of temperature. Global warming also encourages heavy rainfall in particular areas while encouraging desertification in other areas. Some pests and diseases are known to thrive in high temperatures.

Some greenhouse gases include Chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), Nitrous oxide (N2o), Carbon dioxide (CO2), water vapour and methane gas. These gases are among the biggest contributors to climate change.

Climatic forces

Climatic forcings are determiners of climate. They also contribute a lot to climatic change. The climatic forcings include: (a)Solar irradianceThis refers to power produced by the sun per unit. The power is in the form of magnetic radiation. This is also a great contributor of climatic change. Solar irradiance at areas facing directly to the sun is more intense than other areas. Variation in solar irradiance may entirely change the climate of an area. (b)Reflection coefficientThis is also known as Albedo. It is the reflecting power of the earth surface. Areas which are unable to reflect sunlight away experience changes in climate. The Albedo may change in certain regions. This may also lead to climatic change.


Greenhouse gases may be causing great climatic change but cutting down of trees also contribute to climatic change. Green plants like trees act as reservoirs of carbon dioxide. They absorb carbon dioxide during the day. This happens when the plants are making plant food through photosynthesis. Absorption of this gases reduces its emission to the atmosphere. This reduces the greenhouse effect that bring about climatic change. Deforestation destroys carbon dioxide reservoirs. These leads to more carbon dioxide been released to the atmosphere. Trees also contribute to formation of rain. Forests are regarded as water catchment areas. Through transpiration trees loose water which is evaporated to the atmosphere. The water that evaporates forms clouds which eventually bring rain. Cutting trees down may change the climate by leading to desertification. Areas with few or no trees do not receive sufficient rainfall. These areas may dry up leading to change in climate of the regions.There are numerous contributors to climatic change. The above are among the biggest contributors to climatic change.