Bat Benefits, Solar Streetlights and Cigarette Fires

News briefs on helpful bat benefits, commercial buildings developed on the sea in Japan, an increase in energy saving solar streetlights and deaths caused by fires from cigarettes.

| November/December 1988

News briefs on bat benefits, overcrowded Tokyo, organic mailbox  solar streetlights and cigarette fires. 

Bat Benefits, Solar Streetlights and Cigarette Fires

Batters Up 

YET ANOTHER "LOWLY" GROUP OF creatures maligned in folklore but in fact harmless and beneficial are the bats. Bats disperse seeds, pollinate plants and are extraordinarily efficient insect predators. A single gray bat (an endangered species) can eat up to 3,000 insects in one night. But because of their undeserved bad reputation and the superstition that surrounds them, many bats are killed just "to get rid of them," and the destruction of bat habitat is given little thought. Now a Texas-based, nonprofit organization, Bat Conservation International, has been formed to change the situation. To help, or for information on bats, why they should be saved and how you can peacefully coexist with the fly-by-night mammals, contact Bat Conservation International, Austin, TX.

Fleeing to the Sea  

In overcrowded Tokyo, commercial office space is full up—and astronomically pricey. To help solve the problem, a Japanese firm is planning to build and float 35,000-ton "office arks" in Tokyo Bay. The elaborate islands of commerce would include not only office space for hundreds of people but also hotels, restaurants and shops. Workers would commute by helicopter and ferry "buses." Some say that in the near future entire floating cities will sprout off the shores of Japan and other overcrowded nations.

Smart Streetlights  

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