A Project in India Is Turning Discarded Fishing Nets Into Surfboards to Reduce Ocean Plastic

sezer66/iStock via Getty Images
sezer66/iStock via Getty Images

From the San Francisco International Airport to the entire country of Ethiopia, people are trying to save our dying planet. The latest innovative recycling effort comes from the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu, where fishermen are working to give discarded fishing nets a new life as surfboards.

According to The Straits Times, the endeavor is a collaboration between DSM, a nutrition and sustainable living corporation, and Thailand-based water sports company Starboard. Uday Shetty, the operations director of DSM Engineering Plastics, explained to The Straits Times that after they remove the out-of-use nets from the water, they clean, granulate, and transport them to their facilities in Pune, India. There, the deconstructed nets will undergo a strict quality check before being manufactured into eco-friendly surfboards.

The nylon plastic nets, often called “ghost nets,” create a whole host of issues for people and ocean dwellers alike. In addition to getting caught in the nets, fish sometimes consume pieces of them; and since there’s always a bigger fish, the bits of plastic continue to work their way up the food chain. The nets also snag boat propellers, which can damage their engines. As mentioned in a DSM press release, experts estimate that there are around 640,000 tons of the nets in the ocean, which accounts for nearly 10 percent of all ocean plastic waste.

“We look beyond society’s current model of take-make-dispose and instead try to mimic nature and the circle of life,” Matt Gray, a commercial director for DSM Engineering Plastics, said in the press release. By transforming the nets into fins, fin boxes, SUP pumps, and other parts of surfboards, the nets can return to the ocean in a much more environmentally conscious way.

And the benefits of the project aren’t limited to the ocean—it also creates an employment opportunity for the surrounding villagers. As the press release states, “the collection, sorting, cleaning, and processing of discarded fishing nets creates sustainable livelihoods for several local communities in India.”

[h/t The Straits Times]

This Smart Accessory Converts Your Instant Pot Into an Air Fryer

Amazon
Amazon

If you can make a recipe in a slow cooker, Dutch oven, or rice cooker, you can likely adapt it for an Instant Pot. Now, this all-in-one cooker can be converted into an air fryer with one handy accessory.

This Instant Pot air fryer lid—currently available on Amazon for $80—adds six new cooking functions to your 6-quart Instant Pot. You can select the air fry setting to get food hot and crispy fast, using as little as 2 tablespoons of oil. Other options include roast, bake, broil, dehydrate, and reheat.

Many dishes you would prepare in the oven or on the stovetop can be made in your Instant Pot when you switch out the lids. Chicken wings, French fries, and onion rings are just a few of the possibilities mentioned in the product description. And if you're used to frying being a hot, arduous process, this lid works without consuming a ton of energy or heating up your kitchen.

The lid comes with a multi-level air fry basket, a broiling and dehydrating tray, and a protective pad and storage cover. Check it out on Amazon.

For more clever ways to use your Instant Pot, take a look at these recipes.

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A Bald Eagle Nest With Eggs Has Been Spotted on Cape Cod for the First Time Since 1905

6381380/iStock via Getty Images
6381380/iStock via Getty Images

America's bald eagle population has made an incredible comeback in recent decades, and evidence of this can be seen on Cape Cod. As Boston.com reports, a bald eagle nest with a baby chick has been spotted on the Cape for the first time in more than a century.

The Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife spotted the nest in Barnstable, Massachusetts. It's one of more than 70 eagle's nests that have popped up around the state this year, with others being documenting in Concord, Medford, and Northampton. Any eagle nest with eggs is considered active, and according to a photo snapped by a Mass Audubon Long Pasture volunteer, the Cape Cod site has already hatched a chick.

A bald eagle nest with eggs was last recorded on Cape Cod in 1905. In the years that followed, hunting, habitat loss, and insecticides like DDT decimated their numbers, resulting in the birds' addition to the Endangered Species List.

Thanks to conservation efforts and the ban of DDT, this trend has been reversed. Their numbers have grown from to just 471 nesting pairs in the lower 48 states in 1963 to nearly 10,000 today. The species is no longer considered endangered, and as the new Cape Cod nest shows, the birds are beginning to show up in places they haven't been seen in a lifetime.

If you're curious to see if bald eagles live your neighborhood, their nests are easy to spot. The average bald eagle nest is 2- to 4-feet deep and 4- to 5-feet wide—the largest of any North American bird.

[h/t Boston.com]