5 Things You Need To Know Today (April 16, 2018)

Photo: @keiichihiki

1. Is there anything mushrooms can't do?

Scientists have found a way to make biofuel out of mushroom waste. While, contrary to common belief, most biofuel is actually more destructive than it is helpful because it taps into our food supply, mushroom-derived biofuel is far more environmentally friendly. "The production of biofuels using non-food feedstocks can improve sustainability and reduce costs greatly," explained one researcher. (Inhabitat)

2. The Korean beauty industry is booming and shows no signs of stopping.

Korean beauty, or k-beauty for short, is predicted to reach $13.1 billion in sales this year and, according to marketing intelligence agency Mintel, will keep growing over the next few years. The boom is attributed to experiential products that lend themselves to the multistep skin care regimen, solution-oriented formulas, and unique (and sometimes weird) ingredients like snail slime. Ingredients vary, but many companies are shifting their manufacturing process to become healthier and more eco-friendly, too. (CNN)

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3. In an environmentally friendly move, supermarkets in the U.K. are nixing palm oil.

Iceland Foods, a major supermarket chain in the United Kingdom, just announced a ban on palm oil in all of its name-brand products. The palm oil industry is notorious for clear-cutting trees around the world, so this switch could majorly help our rain forests. "We don’t believe there is such a thing as sustainable palm oil available to retailers, so we are giving consumers a choice about what they buy," a store representative said. (Inhabitat)

4. Air pollution may pose a big threat to young kids.

A new study from the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine reports that even minor exposure to air pollution can increase the number of lower respiratory infections for young children. The best course of action in avoiding air pollution when it’s high? Avoid idling cars, stay indoors, and stay away from highways, according to experts. (NYT)

5. This group of Girl Scouts is unstoppable.

Girl Scout Troop 6,000 is an especially unique group of young women: They are all currently living out of homeless shelters. This is the group's first time selling cookies, and they (fittingly) gave themselves a goal of selling 6,000 boxes. We'll toast our Tagalongs to that. (ABC News)

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