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Tag: plant

Long-running coal plant on Navajo Nation stops production

Long-running coal plant on Navajo Nation stops production

Health
A massive coal-fired power plant that served customers in the West for nearly 50 years shut down Monday, the latest closure in a shift away from coal and toward renewable energy and cheaper power. The Navajo Generating Station near the Arizona-Utah line was expected to shutter by the end of the year, but the exact day hadn’t been certain as the plant worked to deplete a stockpile of coal. It stopped producing electricity shortly after noon Monday when shift supervisor Fred Larson, a 41-year employee, put the plant permanently offline. “It will be hard for people because for employees, there’s a lot of pride, a lot of passion for their work, and they have put their heart and soul in this plant,” said Paul Ostapuk, who oversees safety and environment at the plant. The 2,250-megawatt
Pineapple genome offers insights into plant domestication process

Pineapple genome offers insights into plant domestication process

Science
Sept. 30 (UPI) -- The newly sequenced pineapple genome has offered researchers fresh insights into the plant domestication process. Pineapple varieties are grown for a variety of purposes: for fiber, as an ornamental and, most famously, as a delicious fruit. Scientists at the Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology at the University of Illinois sequenced the genome of the red pineapple and compared it to the genomes of several other cultivars. Their efforts -- detailed Monday in the journal Nature Genetics -- revealed evidence supporting their hypothesis, that pineapples can be domesticated in a single step, sans seeds, using cuttings and other methods. "We have chosen major pineapple cultivars worldwide ... to test our hypothesis of 'one-step operation' in domestication of clonally ...
Hinkley Point C nuclear plant to run £2.9bn over budget

Hinkley Point C nuclear plant to run £2.9bn over budget

Business
French power company EDF said the new nuclear plant it is building at Hinkley Point C will cost up to £2.9bn more than thought.It raised its estimate for the project, in Somerset, to between £21.5bn and £22.5bn, blaming "challenging ground conditions".It also said the risk of the project being 15 months late had risen.The firms constructing the new plant, not taxpayers and customers, pay the bill for the increase in costs."This is clearly bad news for nuclear new build prospects in the UK, particularly in light of recent record low offshore wind prices," said Investec analyst Martin Young.Cheap windBecause of the way that the project is being funded, taxpayers and customers will not foot the bill for the increase in costs - EDF and its partner on the proj
Plant roots began following gravity 350 million years ago

Plant roots began following gravity 350 million years ago

Science
Aug. 2 (UPI) -- To make the transition from sea to land, plant roots had to learn to grow downward, to follow gravity. This ability, gravitropism, helped plants anchor to the soil and retrieve water and nutrients. New analysis of this vital adaptation suggests the ability first emerged roughly 350 million years ago. Scientists have studied gravitropism in flowering plants, but until now researchers had not surveyed root growth patterns across the entirety of the plant kingdom. The survey, published this week in the journal Nature Communications, offered scientists new insights into the evolutionary origins of gravitropism. For the study, scientists observed the root growth of several different plant types, including mosses, ferns, conifers and flowering plants. Researchers watched as the...
Mystery ‘tequila plant’ agave to flower in Cambridge after 57 years

Mystery ‘tequila plant’ agave to flower in Cambridge after 57 years

Science
A giant "tequila plant" is set to flower for the first - and only - time after more than half a century.The flower spike appeared a month ago at Cambridge University Botanic Garden and is now three metres (10ft) tall.Staff have been tending the agave, part of a family of plants from which tequila is made, since 1962 but cannot confirm its species until it flowers.They will soon have to remove the roof of the glasshouse as it continues to grow, but once it flowers, it will die.Experts at the garden were delighted when the plant's spike began to grow, indicating it will finally bloom. The succulent resembles a gi...