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tv   Click  BBC News  August 25, 2020 2:30am-3:01am BST

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an overnight curfew is coming into effect in the us city of kenosha in wisconsin after violent protests on sunday sparked by the police shooting of a black man. jacob blake, 29, father of three, is in a stable condition in hospital after being shot a number of times in the back by police. president trump has made an unscheduled appearance at the opening day of republican national convention to claim the democrats are working to steal the us elections in november. he warned — without giving any evidence — that democrats planned to rig the contest through, as he put it, fraudulent use of postal voting. the german chancellor, angela merkel, says russia must investigate the suspected poisoning of one of president putin's most outspoken rivals, alexei navalny. he's been moved to berlin for treatment after falling ill last week. medics say they've found traces of a substance that disrupted his nervous system.
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it's about 2:30am. now on bbc news, it's click. this week — a mountain of energy, a solar sea, and some rather unusual food. theme music hey, welcome to click. i hope you're doing 0k. i don't know about you but this year has felt really quite long so far. we live in a world which is unrecognisable from even six months ago and it's clear that we still have big problems to face. but let's not forget the global issues we were talking about even before the pandemic, particularly climate change. possibly one silver lining from all of this
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is the reminder that tech can and does solve some of our biggest problems. on click, we've been lucky enough to see some amazing tech, tech that can change the world and even revolutionise it. we thought we'd share with you some of our favourites from the past couple of years. we start, where else but in wales? the beautiful welsh countryside, home to valleys, lakes, the odd feral goat, and... electric mountain! hidden inside this mountain is the dinorwig pumped storage power station, and it is basically a monster battery. it stores energy by pumping water from the lake to a lake
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at the top of the mountain, and then letting it flow back downhill, releasing that energy at times of peak demand. see, when you pop the kettle on during breaks in championship matches of that sport they call football, this bad boy springs into action to supplement our national grid, delivering power to our homes in under 12 seconds. it's an incredible view. it's one of the fastest responding power stations on the planet, and will have a nosy inside the thing later in the programme. dinorwig offers a semi—renewable energy solution at a time when our natural resources are being used up. as solar, wind and tidal power alternatives advance, we are craving a method of using their generated energy 21w, despite the weather or time of day. this is where batteries come in. now, this isn't your stereotypical battery. admittedly, when i say battery,
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you probably think of the ones in these — these are rechargeable lithium ion batteries. and we really can't live without these. lithium—ion batteries have truly revolutionised electronics — they power the mobile miracles that we use every day. they have a high density, meaning that they can store a lot of electricity relative to their small size, so we can easily carry them around and recharge them hundreds of times. inside cells are layers of sheets stacked together, a positive cathode, a negative anode, with a separator in between filled with a liquid electrolyte. when a cell is charged, the movement of ions from one side to another facilitates the flow of electrons, which then generates current to power devices. during charging, this process is reversed.
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but the search is on for cleaner, greener forms of energy. for that, lara sailed to a very special island just off norway. we have travelled west now to norway. it is so calm here, it's absolutely beautiful, but not far from here the waves can reach up to three metres, and that's where we are heading, because we are going to take a look at an island which is made up of solar panels, and the idea is that they need to fare 0k whatever the weather. oh, thank you! i made it! ah, we're walking on water!
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these certainly are not the first floating solar panels, but the innovation being tested here is the fabric itself, creating a cost—effective, weather—resistant material that could easily be scaled. there is talk of a set up near the equator the size of a football pitch. this has been designed to withstand wind, rain and ice. around the edges, these barriers prevent any sea water from getting in. so whilst you can see i'm standing in a pretty large puddle right now, that's from last night's rain. what i'm actually standing on is less than one millimetre thick, it's quite hard to stay balanced. it's made from polyester coated in a polymer. what makes this polymer special is how lightweight yet strong it is, meaning it's ideal for this type of installation. in the not—too—distant future, we think we can build systems that are comparable with the so—called ground
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mounds installations on land. that will be a big breakthrough for floatable sites, because then you suddenly have large surface areas where you can build cheap renewable energy are very close to large consumer groups. and making use ofjust a fraction of the sea's vast surface area, as well as taking advantage of the water's ability to keep the panels cool means that the scaling of this does seem plausible. the solar power being harnessed is being used here on this fish farm. the island has been developed to be the exact right size to harness the right amount of power in the summertime, assuming that the weather is good. the rest of the year it's running on diesel, so obviously you can see the environmental benefits of this. but the suggestion is, that an island this size, if anchored in the london area could power 20 average uk homes. make the island the size of a football pitch, and that could rise to 200.
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but of course the investment needed is huge, so moving forward on this could prove more complicated than the proof of concept. back at dinorwig, i'm heading deeper underground. the water comes from the lake, which is about 600 metres above us, down this pipe, hits this valve, and stops. this is the biggest tap you will ever see, and there are actually six of them all in a row down there. when they need the power, this yellow arm swings up, the valve opens, and we get the maximum flow of water through the turbines there in about six seconds. when all six are open, that's 92,000 gallons
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per second, or as it says here, 1.5 million cups of tea. i'm not sure if that earl grey or english breakfast, mind. do we have flow? we have flow. and there it is — turbine number two spinning at about 500 rpm. when all six of these turbines are all spinning, this place produces enough electricity to power the whole of wales for five and a half hours. now, dinorwig runs at about 75% efficiency because it pumps its water uphill at night using cheap electricity it buys from the national grid, and charges a premium for the energy it generates during the day. if we were to move completely away from fossil fuel power stations, would that mean this sort of power station would not
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be able to run? in reality, if we need to pump that water up the hill, we have got to go and buy the electricity from the market somewhere, whether that is a thermal power station, a set of windmills, gas power station, whatever it might be. why are there not more of these around? i suppose the greatest challenge is finding a suitable place in the uk to build them. you have seen yourself that you have got to have them in a specific area, it has got to have two lakes, ideally, reasonably close together, good vertical separation. they are not the kind of things that you can easily build on the back of a wagon and wheel in somewhere. the lakes need to exist or you need to create them so it comes at a cost. i think it's just a limited amount of options for locations. does it get a bit lonely down here? sometimes! hello, and welcome to the week in tech. it was the week that president donald trump joined tiktok‘s rival app,
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new york—based triller, gaining 11,000 followers and his first few days. a decision to award a—level students' final grades on the basis of an algorithm was reversed by the uk government following protests. and apple became the most successful us company ever, with over $2 trillion. it was also the week that scientists at the university of delaware said that they developed a coding that can ease the interface between humans and ai. the new material is a type of polymer known as pedot. it could help create future cyborgs by more easily connecting electronics to human tissue. a team of researchers at the university of michigan has revealed a new rechargeable zinc battery that could provide energy to robots in a similar way to a human‘s fat cells. the new design will help build capacity in robots as they become smaller and will help in applications like drones. an autonomous boat has completed a 22—day mission mapping a part of the sea floor
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of the atlantic ocean. the 12—metre long uncrewed surface vessel was skippered from a base in eastern england and the mission was part funded by the european space agency. finally, how handy would it be to have a chameleon tongue—like robot snatcher to reach all those far away objects? this robot has been developed by a team at seoultech to help collect items without getting too close. the tongue works fast and can snatch up to 30g from 80cm away in under 600 milliseconds. i want to share with you a fact that i hadn't fully understood until i met climate scientist ed hawkins last year. now i'd known our weather was getting worse and our sea levels were rising and i'd known that global warming was happening because we are emitting carbon dioxide and methane into the air at a runaway rate. what i hadn't fully understood is this. simply reducing greenhouse gas emissions will not bring global warming under control.
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in order to stop global warming, we need to do something very drastic indeed. if we end up in a world where our emissions are net zero, we're not increasing the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere any more — that will stabilise global temperatures at the point at which we do that. it's not realistic? to reduce global temperatures, we would need to somehow remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. there are already ways of capturing c02 at source, on its way out of power stations for example. but this doesn't get it all by any means. what you need is something to pull c02 back out of the air. what you need is something like this.
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it's called the artificial tree. the air passes through these filters, which are made of a very special material because c02 actually clings to this material as the air passes over it. once these filters are saturated with carbon dioxide, this whole thing moves down into a container of water where this particular material releases the c02 into a sealed container and then, congratulations, you captured yourself some c02 from the air. this is the brainchild of klaus lackner, here at the negative emissions centre at arizona state university. we realised this was a waste management problem. we are dumping c02 into the atmosphere and it stays there. it was very clear to me in the early—90s that sometime in the 21st century we will have to stop emitting. klaus was the first scientist
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back in 1999 to publish a scientific paper suggesting carbon capture from the air was a feasible way of combating climate change. the problem was, no—one seemed to be listening. if you look at the climate change problem, in the ‘90s, we had models that told us it was happening. you couldn't really see it out in the real world, except with a microscope. in the 2000s, you could measure it — it was happening. in the teens, now, you can see it happen, even as a non—expert. climate has changed. in the next decade, as it grows out of the noise it becomes loud and clear and starts to hurt. once it hurts, people will say, "now what do we do about it?" klaus argues that since we're facing to meet our targets for lowering co2 emissions, carbon capture from the air is now unavoidable.
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and now, people are listening. this technology has recently received commercial investment. we have put so much c02 in the air, that we actually have to come back, so we call ourselves the centre for negative carbon emissions because we actually are thinking about having a period in this century in which we will have to take 100 ppm back. now, that's more c02 than the world emitted in the 20th century. how many of these do you think we would need? a lot — a lot. now, these are very small, but go to the size of a shipping container. if you wanted to actually match current emissions, you would need 100 million of them. now, these are bigger than that, right? 100 million sounds like a horribly large number until you start deconstructing it. we build 80 million cars. shanghai harbour is sending out about 30 million full shipping containers.
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i would argue, as far as industrial scale goes, this is large, but not outrageously large. making that piece was fascinating. it really helped me to think about the different approaches that we can take to tackling the different aspects of climate change. as well as removing our emissions from the air and using greener energy techniques, we can of course also reduce the energy that we use and reduce the emissions produced by certain industries. one of the big ones is agriculture and meat production, and over the past few months, both kate and lara had been looking at alternatives to the food that we eat. at beyond meat in la, they've designed the next generation of meat substitute by analysing it at a cellular level. they then went hunting through the plant kingdom for enzymes, fats and proteins that behave in the same way as the elements of the meat.
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in this case, extracted from peas, potatoes and with beetroot for blood. i know it's not meat, and i'm going to taste it soon, butjust from thejuice, it feels like a burger! as well as the visual appeal, scientists here use an e—nose to examine the components of an aroma so they can be mimicked in the lab. i'm just going to do it the way you do a burger, straight on in. it is oozing all over my fingers! it's dripping down my hands and oozing in a very burger—like way. look at the amount of water we use. we use 99% less water. if you look amount of energy we use, we use half the energy. if you look at the emissions that we provide, we're about 90% fewer emissions. lastly, on land, an
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important one for the farmer, we use 93% less land. so if you're a farmer with 100 acres, you can now grow on seven acres what you used to use all 100 for. there is still one major drawback for your average meat—loving family. where a pack of fresh beef burgers might be priced around £11.40 per kilogram, the beyond meat alternative is currently around £24 for the same weight. this burger substitute is 100% vegan. but while vegetable substitute to struggle to recreate the effect of meat, there is one company who has just decided to do grow it in a lab. aleph farms are creating what's known as cultured meat, which is grown using animal cells. this meat does not fill up any agricultural land with gas—emitting livestock and no animals need to be slaughtered. we use less resources, less input to feed the cells than needed to feed the animal.
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but also, addressing the issues of animal welfare, the issues — the use of antibiotics, which is one of the key drivers for developing the superbugs, meaning the resistance to antibiotics. the potential for creating a more sustainable way to feed the planet is huge, but again, the price, at around £2,000 per kilogram right now, puts this way outside regular household food budgets. there is also the not—so—little matter of getting approval from food safety authorities before you can even think about selling it, which could take years. for many, switching to a meat—free diet is partly about sustainability and partly about better health. but beyond the marketing hype, are these heavily processed foods actually achieving either goal? with cultured meat, you are in many cases trading off
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reduction of methane for potentially substantial increases in the c02 emission. there's a lot of debate and uncertainty around if highly processed food is intrinsically bad for you or not. actually look at what is done to that food on the way to you, and how much energy is added to it in the course of processing, and how many pollutants are produced — that's an essential thing. there is still a long way to go to produce an effective meat substitute that is both delicious and affordable. but with a third of britons already stating they lead a mainly vegetarian life, it's a booming market attracting a lot of investment to design the perfect meat replacement. to make the whole food industry more sustainable, we're also going to need to broaden our diets. so i've come here to copenhagen to visit ikea's research
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and development lab, space 10, to see what they have in mind. what we are exploring in our test kitchen is not necessarily going to end up in ikea restaurants any day soon. 0ur starting point is, really, how do we feed 10 billion people in a sustainable matter and without compromising deliciousness. what am i having? today you are having our dog—less hot dog. a dog—less hot dog! we use carrots instead of sausages. 0k. ..which we have poached in a mixture of apple juice and carrotjuice. and then we have dried them in the oven forabout1.5 hours, so there is shrinking and they get a chewy texture to them, kind of like meat in a way. a lot of what we have come up with is plant—based because we know that turning to a vegan diet is simply the most sustainable thing you can do as an individual. but besides that, we need some protein.
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and there, we have explored everything from insects, not only because they are environmentally friendly, but also because they are delicious. we have explored microalgae or spirulina. the only challenge with spirulina is that it tastes like algae. so we're really trying to find ways of how we can actually make this taste good. we are going to start off by putting this puree or paste of pumpkin seeds. we're just going to put that in the bottom of the hot dog and then we are going to add the carrot and our beetroot ketchup. so, time for a taste. you like it? mm! it doesn't taste like a normal hot dog, but it tastes a lot better. i would never be eating a normal hot dog. thank you. the flavour of all the sauces — there are so many different tastes in there and they
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are all quite intense. 0k. it's a bit messy eating on camera, but beyond the ingredients, ikea is also hoping to reduce its carbon footprint, introducing hydroponic farming in all stores. this method creates the perfect environment for growing plants using their food waste as fertiliser. but we can all be getting a bit more creative with our waste, it seems. take leftover ground coffee for a start. because you only use 1% of the nutrients in the coffee grounds when you make a cup of coffee, we actually use some of our coffee grounds for shortbreads and others for growing oyster mushrooms. will there be caffeine in them? will they keep you awake? laughs i actually don't know. i don't believe so. that's it from us and a look back at our sustainable favourites, and a reminder that tech really can change the world. next week we'll give you another chance to look
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at some of our other recent adventures. in the meantime, you can catch us on social media and youtube, facebook, instagram and twitter @bbcclick. thanks for watching and we'll see you soon. hello there. last week, storm ellen brought us some very wet and windy weather. this week, we have another named storm. this is storm francis, named by the met office. you can see this hook developing in the cloud structure on the satellite picture. this shows an area of low pressure that is deepening rapidly. it will continue to deepen as it moves across our shores.
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an unusually deep low for the time of year, bringing some unusually strong winds. with that, some heavy rain. it's a combination that could well cause some disruption. so, that rain already setting in for many of us. it will continue to pile northwards through the day. it then slows down across parts of northern england, central and southern scotland, northern ireland, some rain feeding back into wales. so these areas could see some localised flooding. and then we have the winds, which will be strengthening through the day. during the afternoon, quite widely across england and wales, we will see gusts of 50 to 60mph, some exposed coasts and hills in the west could see gusts of 70mph. that could cause minor damage, certainly some poor travelling conditions. not as windy further north, but with the heavy rain continuing, if you're in aberdeen, for example, with a strong wind off the north sea, those outbreaks of rain, temperatures ofjust 13 or 1a degrees, it will not feel too pleasant. 22 degrees down towards the south. all the while, though, the far north of scotland, the northern isles particularly will stay dry with some sunshine. now, through tuesday night, you can see this curl of wet weather. here is our area
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of low pressure, still spinning its way through, still providing some pretty strong winds. those winds only slowly easing through the early hours as our area of low pressure drifts out into the north sea. but you can still see plenty of white lines, plenty of isobars on the chart for wednesday morning. we will still have some very gusty conditions across eastern scotland, and particularly eastern coastal counties of england. some rain as well. but from the west, things will be calming down through the day, the winds will slowly ease. we'll see some spells of sunshine. it will feel fairly cool, though. temperatures of 13 degrees for aberdeen, 19 for plymouth, 21 there in london. some more rain in the forecast for thursday and friday. it shouldn't be as windy at this stage. some dry weather in prospect for the weekend, but it is going to feel pretty chilly with a northerly wind across the uk.
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once it hurts, people will say, "now what do we do about it?"
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a very warm welcome to bbc news. my name is mike embley. our top stories: an overnight curfew comes into effect in the us state of wisconsin following protests over the police shooting of another unarmed black man. donald trump receives official republican backing at the party's convention to run for another term as president. in new zealand, the man who killed 51 people at two mosques last year is confronted in court by survivors and relatives. hello and welcome. an overnight curfew has come into effect in the city


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