Health

Mystery of Los Angeles Methane Emissions Probed
July 19, 2009 07:09 AM - New Scientist

The Los Angeles metropolitan area belches far more methane into its air than scientists had previously realized. If other megacities are equally profligate, urban methane emissions may represent a surprisingly important source of this potent greenhouse gas. Atmospheric researchers have long had good estimates of global methane emissions, but less is known about exactly where these emissions come from, particularly in urban areas.

Are Aluminum Bottles Greener than Glass?
July 18, 2009 11:33 AM - , Triple Pundit

Aluminum as a substitute for glass bottles has been inching its way into the consumer experience in the last few years, most notably in the US in the form of beer bottles from Anheuser-Busch and Iron City Beer, a popular regional brand founded in Pittsburgh. Coca-cola has also announced plans to roll out aluminum bottles in this country, though only in limited venues.

Nitrites in Meats Fingered in Rise of Diseases
July 15, 2009 10:53 AM - Emily Sohn, Discovery News

The rising rate of diabetes, Parkinson's disease, and Alzheimer's may be linked to nitrites and related compounds -- found in hot dogs, bacon, potatoes and fertilizers, among other common products.

Limit antibiotic use on U.S. livestock, says the FDA
July 14, 2009 07:50 AM - Reuters

The Food and Drug Administration believes antibiotics should be used on livestock only to cure or prevent disease and not to promote growth, a common use, said a high-ranking FDA official on Monday. Principal deputy FDA commissioner Joshua Sharfstein said restrictions on livestock use would reduce the opportunity for bacteria to develop resistance to drugs used by

Cassavas get cyanide hike from carbon emissions
July 13, 2009 10:58 AM - NewScientist

ONE of Africa's most important food crops is likely to become increasingly toxic as a result of carbon emissions.

Declining Aral Sea: Satellite Images Highlight Dramatic Retreat
July 12, 2009 07:03 AM - Editor ENN, adapted from materials from the European Space Agency

Envisat images highlight the dramatic retreat of the Aral Sea’s shoreline from 2006 to 2009. The Aral Sea was once the world’s fourth-largest inland body of water, but it has been steadily shrinking over the past 50 years since the rivers that fed it were diverted for irrigation projects. By the end of the 1980s, it had split into the Small Aral Sea (north), located in Kazakhstan, and the horse-shoe shaped Large Aral Sea (south), shared by Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan.

Climate Bill Debate Postponed By Senate
July 11, 2009 06:43 AM - Christopher Joyce, NPR

Legislation to slow climate change rolled into the Senate this week and almost immediately ground to a halt. After two days of hearings, Democratic leaders agreed to mothball the measure until September. They blamed a full schedule on health care reform and the president's Supreme Court nominee for the delay.

Disease runs riot as species disappear
July 8, 2009 10:20 AM - Debora MacKenzie, NewScientist

Could biodiversity protect humans from disease? Conservationists have long suspected it might, and now they have the evidence to back this up.

Possible Environmental Causes For Alzheimer's, Diabetes
July 6, 2009 06:23 AM - ScienceDaily

A new study by researchers at Rhode Island Hospital have found a substantial link between increased levels of nitrates in our environment and food with increased deaths from diseases, including Alzheimer's, diabetes mellitus and Parkinson's. The study was published in the Journal of Alzheimer's Disease.

Swine Flu: Just the Latest Chapter in a 91-Year Pandemic Era
July 1, 2009 07:43 AM - Hadley Leggett, WIRED

The current strain of H1N1 influenza, or swine flu, has people scared because it’s a novel virus that most of the population has never been exposed to. But as a group, H1N1 viruses aren’t new. They’ve been circulating since 1918, when a new strain appeared simultaneously in pigs and humans and killed 40 to 50 million people in a single year. Over the past 91 years, the virus has jumped back and forth between humans, pigs and birds – and possibly even been resurrected from a laboratory freezer. Taking a historical view of the swine flu is critical to understanding the current pandemic, and future outbreaks, argue scientists in two perspectives published Monday in the New England Journal of Medicine.

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