WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. consumers could pay record gasoline prices for the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday with pump costs expected to climb another 20 cents over the next two to three weeks, the government's top energy forecaster warned on Monday.
Guy Caruso, who heads the U.S. Energy Information Administration, said not all of the recent jump in crude oil prices has been reflected in motor fuel costs which now top $3 a gallon in many parts of the country, about 80 cents more than a year ago.
"We haven't seen the full pass-through (of high oil prices) yet," Caruso told reporters at a briefing on oil market conditions held at Energy Department headquarters. "I would say what's in the pipe right now (for gasoline) is about another 20 cents."
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Bacteria that feed on vinegar and waste water zapped with a shot of electricity could produce a clean hydrogen fuel to power vehicles that now run on petroleum, researchers reported on Monday.
These so-called microbial fuel cells can turn almost any biodegradable organic material into zero-emission hydrogen gas fuel, said Bruce Logan of Penn State University.
This would be an environmental advantage over the current generation of hydrogen-powered cars, where the hydrogen is most commonly made from fossil fuels. Even though the cars themselves emit no climate-warming greenhouse gases, the manufacture of their fuel does.
Experts are becoming increasingly concerned that increased burning of coal-naturally contaminated with mercury-is leading to releases to the air in some parts of the world from where it can spread around the globe.
GENEVA (Reuters) - Millions of jobs worldwide could be casualties of climate change, though efforts to mitigate its effects will also create huge new waves of employment, United Nations officials said on Monday.
The heads of the U.N. climate and weather agencies told diplomats that global warming could decimate the world fisheries sector, threaten the tourism industry and cause widespread job losses among those displaced by its impacts.
Two UC Davis geologists are taking part in the Iceland Deep Drilling Project, an international effort to learn more about the potential of geothermal energy, or extracting heat from rocks.
Professors Peter Schiffman and Robert Zierenberg are working with Wilfred Elders, professor emeritus at UC Riverside, Dennis Bird at Stanford University and Mark Reed at the University of Oregon to study the chemistry that occurs at high pressures and temperatures two miles below Iceland.
"We hope to understand the process of heat transfer when water reacts with hot volcanic rocks and how that changes the chemistry of fluids circulating at depth," Zierenberg said. "We know very little about materials under these conditions."
LONDON (Reuters) - An outbreak of bird flu has been confirmed at a turkey farm in eastern England although the exact strain is not yet known, Britain's farm ministry said on Monday.
The ministry said preliminary results from the farm on the border of Norfolk and Suffolk were positive for the H5 strain but it is not known if it is the deadly H5N1 variety which has swept across Asia, Europe and Africa.
All birds at the farm, which also houses ducks and geese, will be culled and protection and surveillance zones are being set up, the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) said in a statement.
VALENCIA, Spain - The United Nations' top climate official on Monday warned scientists and government officials from some 130 countries that failure to act on climate change while there was time would be "criminally irresponsible."
Addressing the U.N.'s climate panel, joint winners of the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize along with former U.S. Vice President Al Gore, Yvo de Boer, head of the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change, said the message to world leaders was clear.
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