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Environment Roundup

October 14, 2011

There’s good news about both sea turtles and solar energy.



Good environmental news. I’m Bob Hirshon and this is Science Update.

Hardly a week goes by when we don’t report on a study showing that the environment is in big trouble. But today, we’ve got some good news for a change. Duke researchers report in the journal Biological Conservation that the number of sea turtles accidentally killed in fishing gear has dropped from about 70,000 turtles per year in 1990, to well under 5000 today. Of course, there are far fewer turtles overall today, and they’re still in trouble. Still, the new study provides welcome news. 

In other environmental news, a study from Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory has found that the cost of solar electric power has dropped about 28% in the last year and a half—the panels themselves are much cheaper as are installation costs. Depending on the size of the system, they now range from about $3 to $8 per watt. I’m Bob Hirshon, for AAAS, the science society.