Agriculture

Smart Grid to be Stimulated
October 28, 2009 06:46 AM - Reuters and other sources

President Barack Obama will announce the largest investment of economic stimulus funds in clean energy during a visit to Florida, an Obama administration official said on Monday. The announcement will involve the smart grid, which will help bring energy from clean domestic sources to consumers in 49 states and help build a strong and more reliable electricity grid

Why We Get aflatoxin in Our Peanut Butter
October 27, 2009 04:24 PM - Roger Greenway, ENN

Aflatoxin, found in mold on nuts and grains can cause liver cancer if consumed in large quantities. University California, Irvine researchers for the first time have discovered what triggers the toxin to form, which could lead to methods of limiting its production. Sheryl Tsai, lead author of a study appearing Oct. 22, in the journal Nature that reports the finding. Dr. Tsai is an associate professor of molecular biology & biochemistry, chemistry, and pharmaceutical sciences. "It's shocking how profoundly these molds can affect public health," said Dr. Tsai

U.S. Public Still Unconvinced on Climate Change
October 27, 2009 03:39 PM - Ben Block, Worldwatch Institute

Fewer U.S. citizens consider climate change to be a "serious threat" compared to two years ago, even as scientific evidence demonstrates that the problem has become increasingly severe, according to a recent nationwide public opinion poll. The Pew Research Center for the People and the Press survey suggests that climate change campaigns are not adequately explaining the latest science to an audience that needs to reduce emissions substantially in order for the world to avoid the most damaging effects of global warming.

Important Study on Climate Change and Livestock Emissions
October 27, 2009 10:35 AM - Roger Greenway, ENN

A study by Robert Goodland and Jeff Anhang of the World Bank looked at the relative importance of anthropogenic emissions of greenhouse gasses from oil, natural gas, and coal compared to the life cycle and supply chain emissions of domesticated animals raised for food. They conclude that greenhouse gases (GHGs) from the lifecycle and supply chain of animals raised for food account for 51% of annual emissions caused by humans and should be given higher priority in global efforts to fight climate change.

Senator Boxer Releases Full Draft of US Climate Bill
October 27, 2009 06:56 AM - Thomas Schueneman, Global Warming is Real

Senator Barbara Boxer released a 923-page draft of the Clean Energy Jobs and American Power Act over the weekend, the Senate version of climate and energy legislation, for the first time specifying emissions allocations and costs proposed in the bill. "We've reached another milestone as we move to a clean energy future, creating millions of jobs and protecting our children from dangerous pollution," Boxer, chairperson of the Environmental and Public Works Committee, who wrote the bill with Senator John Kerry, said on Friday.

Europe Offers to Cut CO2 Emissions 95%
October 26, 2009 06:12 AM - Ian Traynor, guardian.co.uk, Environmental Health News

Europe attempted to reassert its international leadership in the fight against global warming today, offering to slash its greenhouse gas emissions by up to 95% by 2050 and by 30% by 2020 if a climate change pact is sealed in Copenhagen in six weeks' time. "This should be seen as a clear message to the world," said Andreas Carlgren, the Swedish environment minister who chaired the Luxembourg meeting. "We expect to reach an agreement in Copenhagen," he added, after environment ministers from 27 countries finalised a common EU negotiating position.

EU leaders seek treaty, climate change deals
October 25, 2009 09:45 AM - Reuters

European Union leaders hope to reach a deal at a summit this week removing the last obstacles to a treaty to give the bloc more global clout, but face a battle over funding for a global climate change agreement. Failure to break the deadlock would risk leaving the 27-country bloc looking impotent when it is trying to strengthen its role on the world stage and the influence of emerging powers such as China is growing following the economic crisis.

Are you repelled by insect repellents?
October 22, 2009 04:10 PM - Roger Greenway, ENN

Many people are concerned about what might be in the insect repellants they apply to their skin or clothing. To repel some mosquitoes, ticks, or other pests, we risk exposure to toxic chemicals with potential health effects. Not to worry, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has launched a new Web page containing product information on certain skin-applied insect repellents. EPA’s goal is to provide the public with information on registered insect repellents and their effectiveness claims in a clear, consistent, and user-friendly format.

San Francisco Embraces Food Recycling Law
October 22, 2009 09:59 AM - Rose Raymond, NPR

Tossing food scraps in your garbage can is a crime — at least in San Francisco. A brand-new city law requires residents to discard food waste in a separate bin. It's the first program in the nation to mandate that all residents, plus businesses, restaurants and multidwelling units like apartment houses compost waste. The city then turns food refuse into compost, which is then sold to Bay Area farms and vineyards.

U.K.'s Royal Society Pushes GM Crop Use as Hunger Solution
October 21, 2009 12:20 PM - David Adam, The Guardian, Environmental Health News

Research to develop genetically modified crops must be stepped up as part of a £2bn "grand challenge" to avoid future food shortages, an influential panel of scientists said yesterday. In its report, the British Royal Society said that GM techniques would be needed to boost yields and help crops survive harsher climates, as the global population rises and global warming worsens.

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