Shiyu Tang

Eugene, OR, United States

About Shiyu

Languages

Chinese, English

Universities

University of Oregon

Comments & conversations

186883
Shiyu Tang
Posted over 1 year ago
Buggin' Out: Urban Bug Farming for the Future
According to National Geographic, U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization released a report last May to remind us that there are more than 1900 insects are edible on Earth. Hundreds of them are already put in the diet in many countries. So why eat something that we always battle with insecticides? That is because insects often contain more protein, fiber and less fat than traditional protein, such as beef and pork. Compared cricket with beef, the calories content per 100g beef are almost 3 times than the amount of cricket, and the fat content is almost 4 times than the cricket. However, they contain almost the same in protein every 100g. In addition, insects are exothermic and require less energy, while cattle are endothermic and need lots of energy from the surrounding word, thereby may have large impacts on the natural resource. What is more, insects reproduce at a much quicker rate than cattle. However, many people especially people in developed countries cannot accept the facts of eating bugs in order for nutrient intake. Most important reason is that insects look creepy and disgusting in shape. Since most bugs are fed on fresh food waste, people are unknown if there are pesticide and other toxins left in the waste or these insects may expose to. However, if people can treat and process the insects strictly just as what we did for processed beef, I think the potential toxin is not a problem. If people can change the appearance of insects and make them more like food, I think eating bugs may much more acceptable. For example, at one ice cream shop in Columbia, the shop’s employee released a cicada ice cream and sold out immediately. They collect the cicadas, boiled them and coated them with brown sugar and milk chocolate and then added to the ice cream. The cicada ice cream looks nothing special or creepy, wanna try? http://www.yumsugar.com/Cicada-Ice-Cream-Banned-Columbia-MO-17797046
186883
Shiyu Tang
Posted over 1 year ago
Can urban beehives increase food production?
Yes, I do think it is possible for the U.S to allow urban beekeeping. As we know, honeybees are playing vital role in our ecosystem since they are responsible for pollinating flowering plants and crops. Plants require these process to reproduce, thus the increasing number of urban honeybees will definitely sustain our food supply chain. Many people will consider the downside of urban beehive such as allergic or sting. However, bees seem do pretty well in urban environment. According to bee expert Noah Wilson-Rich, he reported in his article (http://www.smartplanet.com/blog/cities/urban-beekeeping-keeps-cities-healthy/4768) that 62.5% of urban bees survive the winter compared to only 40% in rural area. The yield of honeybees in urban is also great higher. This phenomenon may due to “mono crop” in rural area, which make bees become “mono pollen diet”. Pollen can provide nutrition to bees in order to maintain good health. Bees in rural area are susceptible to parasites or less pesticide use due to its unbalanced diet. CCD may be one result of this. The variety of plants and flowers in our urban garden, roads can give a potential better chance of survival of bees in urban area. City can provide a rich diversity of pollen to bees and keep them in good health. If we can keep beehive in the appreciate place, such as roof terrace, house garden or an allotment, the downside of bees will be avoided. Currently, there are many designs for urban beehive and I really like the Phillips urban beehive. It is an environmental friendly and sustainable product. It has an entry for bees with flower outside and also contains a glass vessel with honeycomb frame inside. Here is the Phillips urban beehive design: http://www.design.philips.com/philips/sites/philipsdesign/about/design/designportfolio/design_futures/urban_beehive.page
186883
Shiyu Tang
Posted over 1 year ago
Will the Belo Monte Dam project on the Amazon River cause more harm to the environment or will it be a good source of energy for Brazil?
Yes.Just as Eleni explained, the basic principle of how enormous methane gas formed is by decomposition of flooded plants. Methane is produced at the reservoir bottom.When it rises toward the surface,it will be oxidized in the water to carbon dioxide. That is why hydropower cannot be considered as clean energy in tropical area. You can check out more information about methane emission from tropical dams in the following links: http://www.internationalrivers.org/resources/greenhouse-gas-emissions-from-dams-faq-4064 http://www.nature.com/nclimate/journal/v2/n6/pdf/nclimate1540.pdf?WT.ec_id=NCLIMATE-201206
186883
Shiyu Tang
Posted over 1 year ago
Will the Belo Monte Dam project on the Amazon River cause more harm to the environment or will it be a good source of energy for Brazil?
Indigenous people in the Amazon definitely have the right to decide their ancestral homeland’s future and boycott the construction of Belo Monte project and future upstream dams. Since Brazilian government’s logic of how Belo Monte dam is necessary for providing electricity for all Brazilians, is actually based on several myths. First of all, Belo Monte will not provide “clean and renewable” energy as the project predicted, Belo Monte’s 668Km2 reservoir will flood 400Km2 of forest and big dams in tropic area will cause enormous emission of methane gas. Methane is 25 times more potent than CO2. Secondly, Belo Monte will become the most energy inefficient dams in Brazil, since during dry season it can only produce 10% of its 11233MW predicted capacity. What is more, not all the energy will power Brazilian families. Only 70% will be sold to the public, the rest 30% energy will be resold to energy-intensive industry, such as mining. The establishment of the dams actually increases mining expansion in the Amazon region, and will lead to vicious cycle in energy consumption. Mining also lead to other threats in biodiversity. However, the definitive installation license of the dam was granted in June 2011 and the construction seems to move onto accelerating phase. We should aim to think up of backup plan to decrease the threat of the mega-dam to biodiversity, if the program cannot be stopped. For instance, Stop future construction of upstream dams; Establish laws to strictly regulate hydroelectricity energy use in order to avoid waste or further pollution, such as mining threats; Establish conservation program for threatened species, such as captive breeding, zoos. Compute the overall risks of other energy alternatives and find out the cleanest one. The “Amazon Watch” is a major website for supporting indigenous people and protecting Amazon region, you can find much more valuable information there and take action to tell the government that the Amazon is not for sale. http://amazonwatch.org/
186883
Shiyu Tang
Posted over 1 year ago
Cats pose a serious threat to biodiversity: Why do we accept it? What should be done?
Yes, I agree with your idea that people are the ones to blame and are the source of this problem. Instead of eliminating the cat, I think the most effective way is to keep invasive cat indoors. This is a mutually beneficial solution. This can eliminate the threat of cat predation and also protect cats themselves. According the to American Humane Society, cats that are allowed to roam outside live an average of 3 years while indoor cats typically reach an average age of 15 years. Humane traps can also work to trap visiting cat and transport them to local animal shelter safely. This works well for stray or troublesome cats.
186883
Shiyu Tang
Posted over 1 year ago
Cats pose a serious threat to biodiversity: Why do we accept it? What should be done?
Yes, I agree with the idea of fear to drive cats away from endangered species habitat. House cats can be seen as invasive species to a wildlife-friendly yard. Even when cats are full, their instinct can drive them to hunt and kill available prey, such as birds, insects, insects and small amphibians. However, there is no reason we should eliminate them since we cannot protect other endangered species under the cost of threatening existing species. By using the fear of cat, people can use water to deter cat. Just as Becca pointed out, people can use a gentle spray of water from a water pistol. This is an inexpensive way to vacate from wildlife-friendly habitat. Other ways such as motion-activated sprinklers at entrance points, cat-proof fencing, and thorny brambles under feeders may also work to prevent house cats from other species’ habitat. Most importantly, I think people should keep their cats indoors most of the time and when they are out should be under surveillance. This method is mutually beneficial for cats and birds outside. One study also pointed out an alternative method by using ultrasound deterrents. This method can eliminate the use of physical barriers and the ultrasound should be specifically for cat. The device use motion/heat detectors for cat. However, this method is a little expensive but work out efficiently with time. Cats are learning to avoid gardens or habitat with these active devices. You can check out the ultrasound study here: http://www.conservationevidence.com/individual-study/142
186883
Shiyu Tang
Posted over 1 year ago
Purell now, Bacteri-ell later?
I do agree with the idea that too much cleanliness actually decreases the ability of immune response. According to a medical investigation in German, children in rural areas are less likely to suffer from allergies than children from urban areas. This is because rural children have more chance to get contact with nature. When they play with mud, their skin will contact with diverse microbes in the soil. The development of human’s immune system depends on external stimuli. Immunological strength is proportional to the contact with outside environment. The more chance of contact with the outside stimuli, the stronger the immunological strength will be. Thus, rural children’s immune system will establish its understanding of diverse bacteria from childhood, resulting in certain diseases resistance. Most children will not get skin allergies easily. I am not sure the applicability of “bacteri-ell” substitute that you pointed out. However, I think this is a good starting point, since people already did a good job on putting lactic acid bacteria and yeast into yogurt. In order to increase our immune response, I think people should increase their contact with nature resources, and do not pursue too much cleanliness by over-use antibiotics. What is more, educate the public that microbes are not always doing bad things and lead them to a better lifestyle to live with beneficial microbes.
186883
Shiyu Tang
Posted over 1 year ago
What form of renewable energy has or will have the lowest impact on biodiversity?
I agree with your idea that wind energy is very clean and cost-effective. In order to minimize the bird deaths caused by wind development, some researchers find that a “bird risk assessment map” is a “must have” tool for wind development. This kind of map indicates both concentrated migratory pathways and habitat locations for each major bird species. For each location, there are numerous background information, such as habitat land use, land ownerships and conservation issues. Important sites and pathways are colored according to their importance to birds, and scientists identify over 2000 key sites that birds may be vulnerable from wind development. This map can provide some bird-smart energy sources and avoid wind development in high-impact and high-priority bird areas. As American Bird Conservatory (ABC) states, “this map offers a way to prevent millions of bird deaths from wind power, while at the same time providing ample opportunity for the prudent development of this potentially bird-smart energy source”. I think this method can be a good starting point for any consideration for newly wind energy construct. You can check out the “Wind Development Bird Risk Map” here, http://www.abcbirds.org/extra/windmap.html