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What A Week It Was: Apocadocuments from
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Species Collapse:(3)
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contamination  ~ oil issues  ~ global warming  ~ carbon emissions  ~ anthropogenic change  ~ ecosystem interrelationships  ~ water issues  ~ climate impacts  ~ toxic leak  ~ smart policy  ~ ocean warming  



ApocaDocuments (31) gathered this week:
Sun, Jul 25, 2010
from BBC:
UN may strike Baikal off World Heritage list
The UN may remove the world's deepest and oldest lake from the World Heritage list because of concerns over pollution by a Russian pulp and paper mill. Lake Baikal holds one fifth of the world's fresh water and is home to many unique plants and animals. At its 34th session about to kick off in Brazil, the World Heritage Committee will discuss the effect of the plant's wastewaters on the unique ecosystem. The plant produces bleached cellulose. It bleaches paper with chlorine and discharges the wastewaters into Baikal, dubbed the Pearl of Siberia - one of the cleanest lakes on Earth. Ecologists say the mill has been spewing thousands of tonnes of dioxins and other harmful by-products into Baikal. ...


The Pearl of Siberia is turning black.

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Sun, Jul 25, 2010
from ScienceDaily:
Researchers Calculate the Cost of CO2 Emissions, Call for Carbon Tax
Brito and Curl argue that there are three important unresolved questions in the current debate on the reduction of carbon dioxide emissions: "First, what is the range of prices on carbon dioxide emissions that will be necessary to achieve the desired reductions? Second, should electrical generators and transport fuels be regulated jointly or separately? Third, should the restrictions be in the form of a quantity limit such as cap and trade or in the form of a carbon tax?"... The authors noted that the efficiency of coal generators is very concentrated. For instance, "at current prices for fuels, a carbon price of approximately $30/ metric ton (MT) will shut down 10 percent of coal generator capacity," they wrote. "An additional increase of $15 -- resulting in a carbon dioxide price of $45/MT -- will shut down 90 percent of coal generator capacity."... As a result of the risk of high volatility, the authors back a carbon tax to assist the transition from coal to natural gas. They also assert "it is possible to decouple the pricing of allocations for transportation fuel from the allocations for the production of electricity," because the rise in carbon prices needed to effect the shift in electricity generation would have very little impact on transportation fuels. ...


You'll tax my coal from my hot, dead hands.

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Sun, Jul 25, 2010
from Scientific American:
Gee Whiz: Human Urine Is Shown to Be an Effective Agricultural Fertilizer
...environmental scientists at the University of Kuopio in Finland, grew the beets as an experiment in sustainable fertilization. They nourished the root vegetables with a combination of urine and wood ash, which they found worked as well as traditional mineral fertilizer... Urine is chock full of nitrogen, potassium and phosphorus, which are the nutrients plants need to thrive--and the main ingredients in common mineral fertilizers. There is, of course, a steady supply of this man-made plant food: an adult on a typical Western diet urinates about 500 liters a year, enough to fill three standard bathtubs. And despite the gross-out potential, urine is practically sterile when it leaves the body.... ...


All along, the solution was right at our fingertips!

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Sun, Jul 25, 2010
from Washington Post:
As federal panel probes oil spill, picture emerges of a series of iffy decisions
After months of oil-spill misery and endless recriminations about what happened and why, it is increasingly clear that the complex operation of drilling an exploratory well in the deep water of the Gulf of Mexico failed in a complex way. No single decision or misstep in isolation could have caused the blowout, but any number of decisions might have prevented it had they gone the other way. The calamity, the evidence now suggests, was not an accident in the sense of a single unlucky or freak event, but rather an engineered catastrophe -- one that followed naturally from decisions of BP managers and other oil company workers on the now-sunken rig. ...


"...a series of iffy decisions" pretty much describes all of human history.

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Sat, Jul 24, 2010
from Science Daily:
Graphene Organic Photovoltaics: Flexible Material Only a Few Atoms Thick May Offer Cheap Solar Power
A University of Southern California team has produced flexible transparent carbon atom films that the researchers say have great potential for a new breed of solar cells. "Organic photovoltaic (OPV) cells have been proposed as a means to achieve low cost energy due to their ease of manufacture, light weight, and compatibility with flexible substrates," wrote Chongwu Zhou, a professor of electrical engineering in the USC Viterbi School of Engineering, in a paper recently published in the journal ACS Nano.... But what graphene OPVs lack in efficiency, they can potentially more than make [up] for in lower price and, greater physical flexibility. Gomez De Arco thinks that it may eventually be possible to run printing presses laying extensive areas covered with inexpensive solar cells, much like newspaper presses print newspapers. "They could be hung as curtains in homes or even made into fabric and be worn as power generating clothing. I can imagine people powering their cellular phone or music/video device while jogging in the sun," he said. ...


Another plot by those enviro-nazis.

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Sat, Jul 24, 2010
from Reuters:
Moscow heatwave breaks 29-year record
Moscow sweltered through its hottest day in almost 30 years on Thursday, a leading forecaster said, as a heatwave that has destroyed Russian crops over an area the size of Portugal showed no sign of abating. Temperatures in the capital hit 35 degrees Celsius (95 degrees Fahrenheit) for the first time since 1981, said the Fobos weather forecasting centre, which provides weather data for the country's top media outlets. Environmental groups including Greenpeace say Russia's heatwave is evidence of global warming, but forecasters with the national weather centre have said it is too early to draw a direct link. ...


Friction between environmentalists and meteorologists just increases the heat.

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Sat, Jul 24, 2010
from FECYT, via EurekAlert:
CO2 reduction policies in Spain strengthen the services sector
A study by the Basque Center for Climate Change (BC3) has analysed the expected economic impact in Spain of the reduction of greenhouse gases (GHGs) set by the Kyoto Protocol for the period 2008-2012 and for the phase afterwards or post-Kyoto phase. In addition, the services sector will come out on top in comparison to sectors such as industrial or energy sectors. "CO2 restriction policies in Spain have an impact on the economy, in other words, making it lean more towards an economy of services. The weight of the industry and energy sectors is reduced, and this is due to the fact that there is a change in production and consumption patterns resulting from CO2 which will come at a price", Mikel Gonzalez-Eguino, author of the study and researcher for BC3 explains to SINC.... "The conclusion is that if technology evolves following the current trend the best option is above all to reduce emissions rather than postpone it in time because the difference in costs is relatively insignificant. However, if technology evolves in a more radical way and in the short-term, for example, with new batteries to produce electric cars that are much cheaper than the current ones or substantial advances arise in renewable energy to replace other technology, it would be more profitable to delay the reduction of emissions. ...


So if we plan on a miracle occurring, then everything's just fine.

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Sat, Jul 24, 2010
from London Independent:
Toxic legacy of US assault on Fallujah 'worse than Hiroshima'
Dramatic increases in infant mortality, cancer and leukaemia in the Iraqi city of Fallujah, which was bombarded by US Marines in 2004, exceed those reported by survivors of the atomic bombs that were dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945, according to a new study. Iraqi doctors in Fallujah have complained since 2005 of being overwhelmed by the number of babies with serious birth defects, ranging from a girl born with two heads to paralysis of the lower limbs. They said they were also seeing far more cancers than they did before the battle for Fallujah between US troops and insurgents. Their claims have been supported by a survey showing a four-fold increase in all cancers and a 12-fold increase in childhood cancer in under-14s. Infant mortality in the city is more than four times higher than in neighbouring Jordan and eight times higher than in Kuwait. ...


Other than relieving the planet's population burden war is just awful on the environment.

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Fri, Jul 23, 2010
from Reuters:
Senate climate bill in peril as Democrats delay action
The U.S. Senate on Thursday dealt a potentially fatal blow to President Barack Obama's push to curb greenhouse gas emissions, postponing its bid to pass broad legislation to combat climate change. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said he plans to bring up a narrower energy bill next week that would revamp offshore oil drilling rules in the wake of the BP oil spill. But he will put off consideration of broader legislation sought by Obama until September at the earliest. The delay means that Obama's fellow Democrats, who control Congress, have little time to advance the complex legislation amid intense political pressure in the weeks before November congressional elections. It also could derail global climate change initiatives, as the world's major economies and greenhouse gas emitters insist the United States play a leading role. ...


Sometimes I think the US should just secede from the planet.

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Fri, Jul 23, 2010
from Washington Post:
In China, an oil spill and a low-tech cleanup
Hundreds of firefighters and civilian volunteers used bare hands, chopsticks and plastic garbage bags Thursday to wage a low-tech battle against a giant oil slick spreading off China's northeastern coast. The slick, near the oil port of Dalian, in Liaoning province, was caused when two pipelines exploded last Friday as crude was being unloaded from a Libyan tanker. Government officials said the accident released about 1,500 tons -- or 400,000 gallons -- of oil into the Yellow Sea, where the slick now covers up to 170 square miles, according to news reports, making it China's largest recorded spill. ...


Ya gotta love the can-do spirit of using chopsticks to clean up an oil spill.

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Fri, Jul 23, 2010
from Christian Science Monitor:
As Iraq war winds down, US military cleans up hazardous waste
American commanders in Iraq are working to demonstrate that they are clearing the country of tens of millions of pounds of US-made hazardous waste, rebutting claims that they are leaving behind a toxic legacy as US troops withdraw. Hundreds of barrels of all types and all colors -- filled with everything from discarded lithium batteries and oil filters to powerful chemicals like hydrochloric acid -- are stacked in a dusty purpose-built compound on a US base at Tikrit, north of Baghdad. This and a sister facility on another base have so far processed 32 million pounds of "regulated" waste -- more than half of that soil contaminated with petroleum products. The material has been decontaminated, crushed or shredded, and then sold as scrap in Iraq, or recycled and shipped abroad. ...


War may be hell, but at least parts of it are recyclable!

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Fri, Jul 23, 2010
from DesdemonaDespair:
Algae bloom in Baltic Sea puts marine life at risk
Record summer temperatures, farm fertilisers and a lack of wind have a gigantic carpet of evil-smelling weed covering large areas of the Baltic and threatening both marine life and seaside tourism, scientists warn. The 377,000 sq km of blue-green algae, covering an area the size of Germany, has been identified by satellite cameras. It extends from Finland along the south coast of Sweden and surrounds the Danish island of Bornholm. Scientists from the German section of the World Wide Fund for Nature in Hamburg have warned of the damaging effects of the weed. "These huge algae carpets hit the marine environment most," said Jochen Lamp, a WWF project spokesman. "They kill plants and encourage the spread of dead zones on the sea bed which have no oxygen left in them." ...


That algae island's got nothin' on the Great Pacific Gyre.

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Thu, Jul 22, 2010
from BBC:
Climate unit's funding suspended by US DOE
Scientists at the University of East Anglia (UEA) have had funding of $200,000 suspended by the US government in a row over e-mails. The US Department of Energy (DoE) said it had not decided whether to reinstate the long-standing funding after the so-called ClimateGate affair. Climate sceptics alleged leaked e-mails undermined the integrity of UEA's Climatic Research Unit (CRU). The UEA confirmed the DoE has held off funding despite the unit being cleared.... The US DoE has been funding the climate science unit in Norwich since 1990. ...


More proof! Everything they've ever done is utterly discredited!

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Want more context?
Try reading our book FREE online:
Humoring the Horror of the Converging Emergencies!
More fun than a barrel of jellyfish!
Thu, Jul 22, 2010
from New Scientist:
Record-breaking heat does not 'prove' global warming
After very cold winter weather in many parts of the northern hemisphere, the notion of global warming was ripe for mockery. The family of senator Jim Inhofe - who called global warming "a hoax", built an igloo in Washington DC, with a sign saying "Al Gore's new home". And now? The winter weather has given way to a series of extraordinary heatwaves.... According to meteorologist Jeff Masters, nine countries have recorded their hottest ever temperatures this year, from the 53.5 degrees C recorded on 26 May in Pakistan to the 44 degrees C recorded in Russia on 11 July. If these records are officially confirmed, it will mean more national heat records been set in one year than ever before. So should "global warmists" be crowing about how this record-breaking heat proves they were right all along? No: the record-breaking heat does not "prove" global warming.... According to the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, for instance, June was the fourth consecutive warmest month on record. According to NASA, the average temperature over the past 12 months has been the hottest ever.... But the latest El Nio was not as especially strong. What's more, we are currently getting less heat from the sun than we have for decades. This means that it's the combination of a strong underlying global warming trend due to rising carbon dioxide, together with a moderate El Nino, that explains why the planet is so hot at the moment. ...


What's good enough for the gander is good enough for the cooked goose.

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Thu, Jul 22, 2010
from Telegraph.co.uk:
Malaysia closes diving reefs to try to save dying coral
Twelve reefs that attract half a million tourists from around the world annually are now closed to divers and snorkellers until the end of October to allow the corals to recover from bleaching caused by warmer seas. Abdul Jamal Mydin, director general of the Department of Marine Parks, said that the temperature of the seas has risen to 88 degrees F (31C) in recent months, up 4 degrees F (2 degrees C) from the normal level. Up to 90 per cent of the coral has started to turn white meaning it is dying off, threatening the delicate ecosystem. ...


88 degrees? That's making me sweat!

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Thu, Jul 22, 2010
from Mongabay:
Thirty frog species, including 5 unknown to science, killed off by amphibian plague in Panama
With advanced genetic techniques, researchers have drawn a picture of just how devastating the currently extinction crisis for the world's amphibians has become in a new study published in the Proceedings of the Nation Academy of Sciences (PNAS). Studying frog populations using DNA barcoding in Panama's Omar Torrijos National Park located in El Cope researchers found that 25 known species and 5 unknown species have vanished since 1998. None have returned. Amphibians are threatened in many parts of the world by pollution, habitat loss, invasive species, over-exploitation, pesticides, and climate change, yet the big killer of the world's amphibians is disease: chytridiomycosis, a fungal disease, is wiping out frogs even in the world's most untouched habitats.... "It's sadly ironic that we are discovering new species nearly as fast as we are losing them," said Andrew Crawford, former postdoctoral fellow at STRI... According to the paper, since arriving the disease has wiped out over 40 percent of the park's total amphibian species, and one-third of the amphibians' evolutionary history. ...


I'd call that steady-state biodiversity!

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Thu, Jul 22, 2010
from McClatchy, via DesdemonaDespair:
BP's oil spill caused by Fed's 'dangerous culture of permissiveness'
The Bush administration focused from its earliest days on ramping up domestic oil and gas production, charged House Democrats, but at the same time allowed the industry a "dangerous culture of permissiveness" that culminated in the April 20 explosion of the Deepwater Horizon in the Gulf of Mexico.... The House panel interrogated former Interior Department secretaries who implemented the 2001 recommendations of former Vice President Dick Cheney's energy task force, which in turn resulted in an executive order requiring federal agencies to expedite offshore drilling and other domestic energy production. ...


Aren't these the same guys who rail about permissive parents?

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Thu, Jul 22, 2010
from GMA News:
Adaptation critical in fight vs climate change - CCC
As the country braces for the possible arrival of stronger typhoons this year, the Climate Change Commission (CCC) said adaptation is the "critical aspect" in the fight against climate change. CCC, the government arm tasked to promote climate change mitigation and adaptation, said it will forge an agreement with the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) to ensure that aggressive adaptation measures will be advocated in all levels of governance. CCC vice-chairman Secretary Heherson Alvarez said the CCC will sign this month a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the DILG and the Centre for Initiatives and Research in Climate Change Adaptation (CIRCA) of Albay province. ...


I propose we RLH (Run Like Hell)!

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Wed, Jul 21, 2010
from Wall Street Journal:
A Water Fight Over Luxury Showers
Regulators are going after some of the luxury shower fixtures that took off in the housing boom. Many have multiple nozzles, cost thousands of dollars and emit as many as 12 gallons of water a minute. In May, the DOE stunned the plumbing-products industry when it said it would adopt a strict definition of the term "showerhead" in enforcing standards that have been on the books -- but largely unenforced -- for nearly 20 years. Industry response has been fast and furious. "It was not the legislative intent of Congress to authorize DOE to regulate the bathing habits of Americans," wrote Frederick Desborough, vice president of California Faucets, a Huntington Beach, Calif., manufacturer, in a letter to the DOE in June. The showdown is a challenge to President Barack Obama and his energy secretary, Steven Chu, as they try to cajole -- or compel -- Americans to use water and energy more efficiently. ...


It is my God-given, American right to waste as much water as I please!

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Wed, Jul 21, 2010
from Environmental Health News:
New membrane makes fresh water from sea and sewage feasible
Researchers at Yale University have developed a custom membrane that can clean and purify water from oceans, salty ground water or sewage water with far less energy input than currently is required to do a similar job. The membrane may be a big step forward in reaching the goal of reliable and affordable sources of fresh water. Finding sustainable sources of clean drinking water is a major global challenge, especially in most of the developing world. The need is apparent in both urban areas, due to growing population and demand, and rural regions, where sometimes scarce water supplies are quickly drying up. As fresh water becomes more scarce, desalination and filtering will be increasingly necessary to satisfy the world's unquenchable thirst for this precious commodity. Yet, neither of the existing desalination technologies -- distilling sea water water vapors by boiling then collecting the water vapors or reverse osmosis where water is pushed through membranes to filter the salt -- are feasible on a large scale. Both require high amounts of energy to either boil the water or create pressure. ...


Now if we can just develop a membrane to turn that water into wine.

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Wed, Jul 21, 2010
from University of Nebraska-Lincoln, via EurekAlert:
Researchers: EPA should recognize environmental impact of protecting foreign oil
U.S. military operations to protect oil imports coming from the Middle East are creating larger amounts of greenhouse gas emissions than once thought, new research from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln shows. Regulators do not currently attribute these emissions to U.S. gasoline use - but they should, the authors say. UNL researchers Adam Liska and Richard Perrin estimate that emissions of heat-trapping gases resulting from military protection of supertankers in the Persian Gulf amount to 34.4 million metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent a year. In addition, the war in Iraq releases another 43.3 million metric tons of CO2 annually.... "Our conservative estimate of emissions from military security alone raises the greenhouse gas intensity of gasoline derived from imported Middle Eastern oil by 8 to 18 percent," said Liska, UNL assistant professor of biological systems engineering, and coordinator of the Energy Sciences minor. ...


Can't we just designate those CO2 emissions as "off budget"?

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Wed, Jul 21, 2010
from NRDC:
More than One Out of Three U.S. Counties Face Water Shortages Due to Climate Change
More than 1,100 U.S. counties -- a full one-third of all counties in the lower 48 states -- now face higher risks of water shortages by mid-century as the result of global warming, and more than 400 of these counties will be at extremely high risk for water shortages, based on estimates from a new report by Tetra Tech for the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC). The report uses publicly available water use data across the United States and climate projections from a set of models used in recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) work to evaluate withdrawals related to renewable water supply. The report finds that 14 states face an extreme or high risk to water sustainability, or are likely to see limitations on water availability as demand exceeds supply by 2050. These areas include parts of Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Idaho, Kansas, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Texas. In particular, in the Great Plains and Southwest United States, water sustainability is at extreme risk. ...


Thank goodness we don't require the Great Plains states!

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Wed, Jul 21, 2010
from New York Times:
A Russian Warning on Retreating Ice
Sea ice in the Arctic is again in rapid retreat this summer, putting the region on pace to match the record lows seen in 2007, the head of Russia's environmental agency said Tuesday, according to a Bloomberg News report.... Mr. Frolov told Bloomberg that the fast pace of the melt could mean that the North Pole could be ice-free during the summer within just few a decades, far sooner than previously estimated. Arctic waterways typically choked with ice are now opening up, he said. ...


They said it wouldn't happen till long after I was dead!

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Tue, Jul 20, 2010
from Yale environment 360:
Does Egypt Own The Nile? A Battle Over Precious Water
A simmering dispute over who owns the waters of the River Nile is heating up. From its headwaters in Ethiopia and the central African highlands to the downstream regional superpower Egypt, the Nile flows through 10 nations. But by a quirk of British colonial history, only Egypt and its neighbor Sudan have any rights to its water. That is something the upstream African nations say they can no longer accept. Yet as the nations of the Nile bicker over its future, nobody is speaking up for the river itself -- for the ecosystems that depend on it, or for the physical processes on which its future as a life-giving resource in the world's largest desert depends. The danger is that efforts to stave off water wars may lead to engineers trying to squeeze yet more water from the river -- and doing the Nile still more harm. What is at risk here is not only the Nile, but also the largest wetland in Africa and one of the largest tropical wetlands in the world -- the wildlife-rich Sudd. ...


That ownership thing humans do... just hasn't worked out so well.

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Tue, Jul 20, 2010
from Wall Street Journal:
Fresh Water Aimed at Oil Kills Oysters
Oysters are dying in their beds in the brackish marshes of southern Louisiana, but the culprit isn't oil spilling from the Gulf. It is, at least in part, fresh water. In April, soon after the oil spill started, Louisiana officials started opening gates along the levees of the Mississippi River, letting massive amounts of river water pour through man-made channels and into coastal marshes. It was a gambit--similar to opening a fire hose--to keep the encroaching oil at bay. By most accounts, the strategy succeeded in minimizing the amount of oil that entered the fertile and lucrative estuaries. But oyster farmers and scientists say it appears to have had one major side effect: the deaths of large numbers of oysters, water-filterers whose simplicity and sensitivity makes them early indicators of environmental influences that ultimately could hit other marsh dwellers too. ...


I know we're trying our best but some days it seems we can't we do ANYTHING right.

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Tue, Jul 20, 2010
from ILRI, via EurekAlert:
Experts warn rapid losses of Africa's native livestock threaten continent's food supply
Urgent action is needed to stop the rapid and alarming loss of genetic diversity of African livestock that provide food and income to 70 percent of rural Africans and include a treasure-trove of drought- and disease-resistant animals, according to a new analysis presented today at a major gathering of African scientists and development experts.... "Africa's livestock are among the most resilient in the world yet we are seeing the genetic diversity of many breeds being either diluted or lost entirely," said Abdou Fall, leader of ILRI's livestock diversity project for West Africa. "But today we have the tools available to identify valuable traits in indigenous African livestock, information that can be crucial to maintaining and increasing productivity on African farms." ...


If monoculture is good for Iowa, it's good for Africa.

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You're still reading! Good for you!
You really should read our short, funny, frightening book FREE online (or buy a print copy):
Humoring the Horror of the Converging Emergencies!
We've been quipping this stuff for more than 30 months! Every day!
Which might explain why we don't get invited to parties anymore.
Mon, Jul 19, 2010
from London Independent:
Curry spices for cows and sheep could cut methane emissions
Curry spices could hold the key to reducing the enormous greenhouse gas emissions given off by grazing animals such as sheep, cows and goats, scientists have claimed. Research carried out at Newcastle University has found that coriander and turmeric -- spices traditionally used to flavour curries -- can reduce by up to 40 per cent the amount of methane that is produced by bacteria in a sheep's stomach and then emitted into the atmosphere when the animal burps. Working rather like an anti-biotic, the spices were found to kill the methane-producing "bad" bacteria in the animal's gut while allowing the "good" bacteria to flourish. ...


Might be hell on those first-date kisses, though.

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Mon, Jul 19, 2010
from Chicago Tribune:
Meat with antibiotics off the menu at some hospitals
The evening's menu featured grass-fed, antibiotic-free beef over pasta, fresh seasonal vegetables and fresh organic peaches -- items right at home in the city's finest restaurants. Instead, the dishes were prepared for visitors, staff and bed-bound patients at Swedish Covenant Hospital. The Northwest Side hospital is one of 300 across the nation that have pledged to improve the quality and sustainability of the food they serve, not just for the health of their patients but, they say, the health of the environment and the U.S. population. ...


Hospitals being about health? What'll they think of next!

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Mon, Jul 19, 2010
from London Daily Telegraph:
Coral reefs suffer mass bleaching
The phenomenon, known as coral bleaching because the reefs turn bone white when the colourful algae that give the coral its colour and food is lost, has been reported throughout south east Asia, the Indian Ocean and the Pacific. Divers and scientists have described huge areas of previously pristine reef being turned into barren white undersea landscapes off the coast of Thailand and Indonesia. The popular island tourist destination the Maldives have also suffered severe bleaching. Reefs in the Caribbean could also be under threat. High ocean temperatures this year are being blamed for the bleaching, which experts fear could be worse than a similar event in 1998 which saw an estimated 16 per cent of the world's reefs being destroyed. ...


We call that gettin' Cloroxed!

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Mon, Jul 19, 2010
from Christian Science Monitor:
Gulf oil spill: Fouling air as well as water?
Questions about air pollution related to the BP oil spill may get some clearer answers this coming week, as university researchers and a Louisiana environmental group release initial findings of their independent analysis of the Gulf region's air quality. Last week, the EPA said that residents of two hard hit coastal communities in Louisiana -- Grand Isle and Venice -- face a "moderate health risk” due to hydrocarbon fumes. In Terrebonne Parish, residents of the town of Cocodrie and the surrounding area are also reporting strong odors of petroleum. For months since BP's Deepwater Horizon oil well blew, residents along the Gulf Coast, including many in New Orleans and other metro regions miles away from the shore, have said they smell fumes from the oil spill. Some have reported symptoms ranging from red eyes and runny noses to sinus infections and flu-like symptoms. ...


Water and air...somehow interconnected?Inexplicable!

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Mon, Jul 19, 2010
from The Daily Climate:
New conservation model emerges in Canada's boreal
The scale of the conservation effort is staggering: 470,000 square miles - half the size of the Louisiana Purchase, five times the size of the U.S. national park system - forever shielded from logging, mining and damming. It is part of an ongoing and unprecedented drive to protect Canada's northern boreal forests, peat bogs, wetlands and tundra - a drive that is also changing how land managers view their stewardship, civic leaders approach economic growth and companies view their bottom line. And for the first time, some of the protections have a climate component. "It's our gift to future generations," said Alan Latourelle, chief executive officer of Parks Canada, the agency managing the nation's parks, which is in the process of doubling their size. "We're the last generation that can do that." ...


Hey, climate refugees! Have I got an ideal place for you!

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