Ignoble Rot: Food Scraps as Compost and Energy
Food scraps comprise almost one-fifth of the amount of material our region sends to landfills every year – enough to fill 5000 long-haul trucks. These food scraps can provide compost, energy and other benefits to communities, but what are the most desirable environmental and economic approaches to dealing with this resource? What impact do food scraps have on the climate, water supplies, energy, and food security? David Allaway, senior policy analyst with the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality, will share insights for different ways of dealing with food scraps while reducing what we throw away. This event is part of Metro’s Let’s Talk Trash series designed to engage you in discussions that help shape how our region manages its waste in the future.
Fat, Fertility, and the Brain
There is relationship between women’s body composition and their fertility. When women are too thin they can stop menstruating and become infertile, and this is likely an evolutionary mechanism prevent mammals from becoming pregnant when food is scarce. However, with the rising obesity epidemic, too much body fat can be detrimental to fertility as well. At this Science on Tap, Dr. Cadence True, Staff Scientist at in the Division of Diabetes, Obesity, and Metabolism at OHSU, will talk about how hormonal signals to the brain help make sure that reproduction happens only during favorable metabolic conditions, and will describe the role the brain plays in the control of female reproductive cycling.
NASA’s Greatest Hits: Fifty Years of Exploring Our Solar System
A lot happened in NASA exploration of the solar system the summer of 2015, including the 10-year journey of New Horizons probe to the dwarf planet Pluto and the Dawn mission to dwarf planet Ceres in the asteroid belt. These missions cap a five-decade-long era of solar system reconnaissance that began with Venus and Mars in the early 1960s, and continued through first looks of Mercury, Jupiter, and Saturn in the 1970s, and Uranus and Neptune in the 1980s. Meaningfully, the July 14 flyby of Pluto occurred 50 years to the day after humans first explored Mars with NASA’s Mariner 4 on July 14, 1965. At this Science on Tap, Greg Cermak, a NASA Solar System Ambassador and former Astrobiology instructor at WSU, will take us on a tour of the greatest hits of five decades of NASA outer solar system exploration and the spacecraft that made it all possible.