Enn Original News

The Universal Influenza Vaccine
December 7, 2010 10:19 AM - David A Gabel, ENN

Every year, people line up to get flu vaccines at pharmacies and doctor’s offices because the flu develops new strains, requiring the vaccines to be updated. What if there was a single flu vaccine you could take to last for decades against any flu virus strain? Such a thing would make yearly trips to get vaccinated obsolete and save tons of money in medical costs. Scientists at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) believe this is possible.

The Europe Electric Grid
December 7, 2010 09:39 AM - Andy Soos, ENN

Ten European countries, including Norway, have agreed to develop an offshore electricity grid at the North Sea, in a bold move that promoters say will give Europe the possibility of tapping into an even bigger source of energy than the Middle East's oil capacity. Ministers from all the ten 'North Seas Countries' signed of a 'Memorandum of Understanding' on December 3 to develop an offshore electricity grid seen as a major step forward for a single European market for electricity.

Top Solar Sources in the US and North America
December 6, 2010 02:49 PM - Andy Soos. ENN

Ideally a location for the generation of solar power should have a relatively high level of solar insolation (ability to generate a significant amount of solar energy), a fairly large amount of economic activity to result from solar energy being deployed, a reasonably low cost of energy installation, higher than average current prices for electricity, and the potential for electricity production through solar power that would offset large amounts of carbon emissions. In other words it better be sunny and near major cities or factories. In the US Hawaii, New Mexico, Colorado, Missouri, Georgia, Texas, Arkansas, Alabama, Mississippi, and Oklahoma are in the top 10 state locations according to Professor Matt Croucher from the W. P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University whose report (The Optimal Deployment of Solar Index)provides a ranking. What is reasonably in common is that all of these states are about at the same latitude. Mexico is also a solar energy opportunity without parallel, according to a report from Greentech Media (via Rhone Resch’s Twitter post). The report, Solar Energy Sector, was prepared by Mexico’s energy department, SENER, formally known as the Mexican Secretaría de Energía. One of the other prime areas in the world is the Sahara Desert. Again the major thing in common is latitude and availability and angle of the sun relative to the world.

Vitamin B1 as Treatment for Diabetes
December 6, 2010 09:08 AM - David A Gabel, ENN

A new study from the University of Bristol published in the Journal of Molecular and Cellular Cardiology shows that a dietary supplement of B1 vitamins can potentially prevent heart disease for people with diabetes. Half of all people with diabetes succumb to cardiovascular disease and it is the leading cause of death for diabetes patients.

Prehistoric Reptilian Diversity Caused by Rainforest Collapse
December 3, 2010 09:48 AM - David A Gabel, ENN

At 300 million years ago, global warming brought about an abrupt collapse of tropical rainforests. According to a new study, it is now believed that this event spawned the evolutionary burst of reptiles. It gave rise to the dinosaurs, which dominated the globe for over 150 million years.

Peak Oil, Then Coal
December 2, 2010 06:42 PM - Andy Soos, ENN

When will production of oil and coal peak? After the peak, production will decline because supplies are being depleted and no new sources are to be found. Peak oil is the point in time when the maximum rate of global petroleum extraction is reached, after which the rate of production enters terminal decline. Optimistic estimations of peak production forecast the global decline will begin by 2020 or later, and assume major investments in alternatives will occur before a crisis, without requiring major changes in the lifestyle of heavily oil-consuming nations. These models show the price of oil at first escalating and then retreating as other types of fuel and energy sources are used. Pessimistic predictions of future oil production operate on the thesis that either the peak has already occurred, that oil production is on the cusp of the peak, or that it will occur shortly. The most recent edition of the respected science journal Nature contemplates the end of cheap coal with an analysis of the decline of global coal supplies by Post Carbon Institute Fellows David Fridley and Richard Heinberg. The estimates for global peak coal production vary wildly. Many coal associations suggest the peak could occur in 200 years or more, while scholarly estimates predict the peak to occur as early as 2010. Research in 2009 by the University of Newcastle in Australia concluded that global coal production could peak sometime between 2010 and 2048.

A Key to Prevent Cancer is Shown to be False
December 2, 2010 08:35 AM - David A Gabel, ENN

The likelihood of developing cancer is largely attributed to an individual's genetic inheritance, but can also be affected by lifestyle choices and what we eat. In a 2009 article, the American Cancer Society recommended eating at least five servings of fruits and vegetables per day to prevent cancer. Now, a new study from the University of Oxford suggests that fruits and vegetables, while important for a healthy diet, are unlikely to protect against cancer.

Polluted Holidays in Iran
December 1, 2010 01:16 PM - Andy Soos, ENN

A holiday is supposed to be a fun off day to enjoy life in some fashion. For the second time in a month, heavy air pollution in Iran's smog-filled capital has forced authorities to close government offices and schools and declare a two-day public holiday because of the health dangers of being outdoors. Yet this happened in July 2009 too when Iranian authorities declared public holiday in the capital Tehran after a sandstorm blotted out the already heavily polluted city. All of this is caused by several factors, some man made and some due to local climate and geological conditions. It is also not unique for Tehran though that city is suffering in the extreme.

New Prize Announced in "Get to Know" Contest, Deadline Extended
November 30, 2010 10:29 PM - Editor, ENN

"Get to Know" contest for youth has extended its deadline until December 17th, 2010. There is also a new $500 cash prize for the young nature artist whose work is chosen for the cover of the 2012 Get to Know Calendar. Contest organizers are inviting all American youth age 5-18 to take advantage of these changes by getting outdoors and "getting to know" the amazing wild neighbors who share their ecosystems through art, writing, photography and video. Biodiversity-themed art, writing and photography entries based on first-hand experiences with nature online at www.gettoknow.ca until December 17th, which brings the contest closing right into the festive season. All youth between the ages of 5 and 18 living in the United States are eligible to enter in these categories. Youth from all over the world are invited to help ring in the New Year — 2011 International Year of Forests — by creating short videos themed “This is my Forest” for the Get to Know Contest. The unique international video category will accept entries at www.gettoknow.ca until May 2011. Get to Know Contest winners will get exciting prizes, including a week-long Art & Nature Camp experience at a Canadian national park for those 12 and older, and a $500 cash prize for the young artist whose work is chosen for the cover of the 2012 Get to Know Contest Calendar. Additionally, winning art and writing entries will be published in the 2012 Get to Know Contest Calendar, and winning videos will be showcased at United Nations International Year of Forests events.

Hurricane Season 2010
November 30, 2010 01:00 PM - Andy Soos, ENN

There were no reported hurricane disasters like Katrina that hit New Orleans in 2005. So it is somewhat surprising to hear that according to NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration,) the 2010 Atlantic hurricane season, was one of the busiest on record. In contrast, the eastern North Pacific season had the fewest storms on record since the satellite era began. In the Atlantic Basin a total of 19 named storms formed — tied with 1887 and 1995 for third highest on record. Of those, 12 became hurricanes — tied with 1969 for second highest on record. Five of those reached major hurricane status of Category 3 or higher.

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