Over 35 million Americans Faced Hunger in 2006: USDA
November 15, 2007 09:09 AM - Reuters
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. government said the number of Americans who went hungry in 2006 was held in check at 35 million people from the prior year, but food advocacy groups said on Wednesday more needs to be done.
The U.S. Agriculture Department said a total of 12.65 million households were "food insecure," or 10.9 percent of U.S. homes, up from 12.59 million a year ago.
The USDA defines food insecurity - its metric for measuring hunger - as having difficulty acquiring enough food for the household throughout the year.
German Carmakers Lag France, Italy in CO2 Cuts: Group
November 15, 2007 09:03 AM - Reuters
STRASBOURG, France (Reuters) - Average carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from new cars made by German manufacturers rose in 2006, while French and Italian producers cut pollution from their vehicles, data showed on Thursday.
Brussels-based environmental group Transport & Environment (T&E) said average emissions from new German vehicles jumped 0.6 percent last year because Germany was producing heavier cars, while French and Italian manufacturers cut emissions from their new cars by 1.6 percent on average.
Eyewitness to climate change
November 14, 2007 06:39 PM - WWF
WWF has launched a Climate Witness Programme for people to share how climate change is directly affecting them.
Researchers Get Stem Cells From Cloned Monkeys
November 14, 2007 03:31 PM - Reuters
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. researchers have cloned monkeys and used the resulting embryos to get embryonic stem cells, an important step towards being able to do the same thing in humans, they reported on Wednesday.
Shoukhrat Mitalipov and colleagues at Oregon Health & Science University said they used skin cells from monkeys to create cloned embryos, and then extracted embryonic stem cells from these days-old embryos.
This had only been done in mice before, they reported in the journal Nature. Mitalipov had given sketchy details of his work at a conference in Australia in June, but the work has now been independently verified by another team of experts.
Carbon Job Market Booming but Talent Pool is Dry
November 14, 2007 12:55 PM - Reuters
LONDON (Reuters) - Million-dollar jobs in the infant global carbon market, which will double in value to $60 billion this year, are standing vacant because of a lack of suitable talent, according to senior recruiters in the industry.
Armed with lucrative pay packages, recruiters are scouring a niche international talent pool for potential applicants in the three-year old carbon trading sector.
As we all know, plastic bags don't have a lot of fans among the world's eco-activists. When you're shopping at Whole Foods, you're shamed into picking paper every time, despite the evidence that plastic isn't really any worse for the world. (Really want to be green? Go with canvas instead.)
Two large meat processors defend carbon monoxide use despite risks
November 13, 2007 08:09 PM - By Christopher Doering
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Two of the biggest U.S. meat processors on Tuesday defended a packaging technique designed to keep meat looking fresh at grocery stores even as U.S. lawmakers criticized it as unsafe and misleading.
Packers use carbon monoxide to stabilize the color of meat, but some Democrats said the process misleads consumers by making the products look safer than they really are, and puts the public at risk of eating spoiled meat.
Rep. Bart Stupak, Michigan Democrat and chairman of a House Energy and Commerce subcommittee, called the practice deceptive and "a potential health threat," and accused U.S. regulators of "turning a blind eye" toward health dangers.
Who's L.A. gonna call? -- "Drought Busters"
November 13, 2007 07:11 PM - Reuters
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - A team of "Drought Busters" driving hybrid Toyota Prius cars was dispatched throughout Los Angeles on Tuesday to educate residents on water waste as the city struggles with a record drought.
Water authorities said the six-person team would give written notices to Angelenos caught wasting water as well as handing out advice on how to cut excessive water use.
Fines are not envisaged at the moment but officials left open the possibility that the Drought Busters could impose penalties if record low rainfall persists.
"We are not in the mandatory water conservation phase at this point and we will not be writing fines," the city's Department of Water and Power chief, Robert Rozanski, told a news conference.
Hillary Clinton Praises College of The Atlantic's Net-Zero Commitment
November 13, 2007 09:38 AM - College of The Atlantic
College of the Atlantic’s commitment to reduce energy use on campus and become the nation’s first net-zero campus for carbon emissions came to the attention of Sen. Hillary Clinton Thursday. In a press release issued by the senator as part of her primary campaign, Clinton called upon colleges and K-12 schools to reduce emissions on campus and in communities.
Chocolate began as beer-like brew 3,100 years ago
November 13, 2007 08:26 AM - Will Dunham -Reuters
The chocolate enjoyed around the world today had its origins at least 3,100 years ago in Central America not as the sweet treat people now crave but as a celebratory beer-like beverage and status symbol, scientists said on Monday.
Researchers identified residue of a chemical compound that comes exclusively from the cacao plant -- the source of chocolate -- in pottery vessels dating from about 1100 BC in Puerto Escondido, Honduras.