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Through the lens

Through the lens

Join us as we take a look through the lens at some environmental events from around the world over the past week, including a unique new supermarket and an elusive scaly gekko

Ah, yes, the great outdoors. Get your hiking gear, slip on those boots and off you go, exploring the pristine wilderness, enjoying the beauty of nature and doing something for your fitness. People who like to camp, bike, hike or paddle out into nature often pride themselves on their concern for the environment and on a healthy lifestyle but it turns out that a lot of outdoor gear is neither good for those wearing it nor for the environment because it contains PFCs, carcinogenic chemicals. Now Gore Fabrics, well-known for its Gore-Tex textiles has announced that it will be phasing out the chemical. So hopefully soon, you'll be able to head out there again remorse-free and in a jacket that is slighly more functional than the one this guy is wearing.


The great outdoors is familiar turf for this gekko who lives in the wilderness of Madagascar. What makes the animal unique is that unlike many of its kin, it doesn't shed its tail when someone tries to catch it. Instead, it drops the scales that cover its body. That makes this picture, which shows the animal with all its scales attached, quite unique. It took researchers from Ludwig-Maximilian University in Munich some time to catch one "intact." Attempts, which included grabbing the animals using cotton pads merely resulted in handfuls of scales. They finally managed to catch the critters using plastic bags.

 

"Pay what you want" reads the sign and it sums up one of the two unique concepts behind the newly opened Good Food supermarket in the German city of Cologne. All the products on the store shelves would ordinarily have been thrown away, either because they are past their expiration date (most products are still perfectly fine long after that date) or, in the case of some of the fruit and vegetables, because they don't look perfect. And, customers are not expected to pay fixed prices for produce, but simply invited to donate what they want. Given that a third of all food in the world is thrown away for one reason or another, stores like this seem long overdue. 

 

We round out our weekly look through the lens with a stunning image of the power and beauty of nature from the island of Hawaii. The Kilauea volcano on Big Island has been spouting lava continuously since 1983 but the flow of liquid rock into the ocean has recently increased, making the meeting of lava and ocean even more explosive than usual.