Posts from the ‘Science’ Category

Germany Set to Abandon Nuclear Power for Good

http://www.commondreams.org/

by Juergen Baetz

BERLIN — Germany is determined to show the world how abandoning nuclear energy can be done.

In this March 18, 2011 photo, a traffic sign stands next to the nuclear power plant of Biblis, Germany. Germany stands alone among the world’s leading industrialized nations in its determination to abandon nuclear energy for good because of the technology’s inherent risk. Europe’s biggest economy is betting billions on expanding the use of renewable energies to meet its demand instead. The transition was supposed to happen slowly over the next 25 years, but now it is being accelerated in the wake of Japan’s Fukushima disaster. Chancellor Angela Merkel said the ‘catastrophe of apocalyptic dimensions’ irreversibly marks the start of a new era. (AP Photo/Michael Probst) The world’s fourth-largest economy stands alone among leading industrialized nations in its decision to stop using nuclear energy because of its inherent risks. It is betting billions on expanding the use of renewable energy to meet power demands instead.

The transition was supposed to happen slowly over the next 25 years, but is now being accelerated in the wake of Japan’s Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant disaster, which Chancellor Angela Merkel has called a “catastrophe of apocalyptic dimensions.”

Berlin’s decision to take seven of its 17 reactors offline for three months for new safety checks has provided a glimpse into how Germany might wean itself from getting nearly a quarter of its power from atomic energy to none.

And experts say Germany’s phase-out provides a good map that countries such as the United States, which use a similar amount of nuclear power, could follow. The German model would not work, however, in countries like France, which relies on nuclear energy for more than 70 percent of its power and has no intention of shifting.

“If we had the winds of Texas or the sun of California, the task here would be even easier,” said Felix Matthes of Germany’s renowned Institute for Applied Ecology. “Given the great potential in the U.S., it would be feasible there in the long run too, even though it would necessitate huge infrastructure investments.”

Nuclear power has been very unpopular in Germany ever since radioactivity from the 1986 Chernobyl disaster drifted across the country. A center-left government a decade ago penned a plan to abandon the technology for good by 2021, but Merkel’s government last year amended it to extend the plants’ lifetime by an average of 12 years. That plan was put on hold after the March 11 earthquake and tsunami compromised nuclear power plants in Japan, and is being re-evaluated as the safety of all of Germany’s nuclear reactors is being rechecked.

Germany currently gets 23 percent of its energy from nuclear power – about as much as the U.S. Its ambitious plan to shut down its reactors will require at least euro150 billion ($210 billion) investment in alternative energy sources, which experts say will likely lead to higher electricity prices.

Germany now gets 17 percent of its electricity from renewable energies, 13 percent from natural gas and more than 40 percent from coal. The Environment Ministry says in 10 years renewable energy will contribute 40 percent of the country’s overall electricity production.

The government has been vague on a total price tag for the transition, but it said last year about euro20 billion ($28 billion) a year will be needed, acknowledging that euro75 billion ($107 billion) alone will be required through 2030 to install offshore wind farms.

The president of Germany’s Renewable Energy Association, Dietmar Schuetz, said the government should create a more favorable regulatory environment to help in bringing forward some euro150 billion investment in alternative energy sources this decade by businesses and homeowners.

Last year, German investment in renewable energy topped euro26 billion ($37 billion) and secured 370,000 jobs, the government said.

After taking seven reactors off the grid last week, officials hinted the oldest of them may remain switched off for good, but assured consumers there are no worries about electricity shortages as the country is a net exporter.

“We can guarantee that the lights won’t go off in Germany,” Environment Ministry spokeswoman Christiane Schwarte said.

Most of the country’s leaders now seem determined to swiftly abolish nuclear power, possibly by 2020, and several conservative politicians, including the chancellor, have made a complete U-turn on the issue.

Vice Chancellor Guido Westerwelle said Wednesday “we must learn from Japan” and check the safety of the country’s reactors but also make sure viable alternatives are in place.

“It would be the wrong consequence if we turn off the safest atomic reactors in the world, and then buy electricity from less-safe reactors in foreign countries,” he told the Passauer Neue Presse newspaper.

But Schuetz insists that “we can replace nuclear energy even before 2020 with renewable energies, producing affordable and ecologically sound electricity.”

But someone will have to foot the bill.

“Consumers must be prepared for significantly higher electricity prices in the future,” said Wolfgang Franz, head of the government’s independent economic advisory body. Merkel last week also warned that tougher safety rules for the remaining nuclear power plants “would certainly mean that electricity gets more expensive.”

The German utilities’ BDEW lobby group said long-term price effects could not be determined until the government spells out its nuclear reduction plans. Matthes’ institute says phasing out nuclear power by 2020 is feasible by better capacity management and investment that would only lead to a price increase of 0.5 cents per kilowatt-hour.

In Germany, the producers of renewable energy – be it solar panels on a homeowner’s rooftop or a farm of wind mills – are paid above-market prices to make sure their investment breaks even, financed by a 3.5 cents per kilowatt-hour tax paid by all electricity customers.

For a typical German family of four who pay about euro1,000 ($1,420) a year to use about 4,500 kilowatt-hours, the tax amounts to euro157 ($223).

The tax produced euro8.2 billion ($11.7 billion) in Germany in 2010 and it is expected to top euro13.5 billion ($19.2 billion) this year. The program – which has been copied by other countries and several U.S. states such as California – is the backbone of the country’s transition toward renewable energies.

“Our ideas work. Exiting the nuclear age would also be possible in a country like the U.S.,” Schuetz said.

Another factor likely to drive up electricity prices is that relying on renewable energies requires a huge investment in the electricity grid to cope with more decentralized and less reliable sources of power. Economy Minister Rainer Bruederle just announced legislation to speed up grid construction but gave no cost estimate.

And even if non-nuclear power is more expensive, Germans seeing images daily of Japan’s crippled Fukushima nuclear complex seem willing to pay the higher price.

Ralph Kampwirth, spokesman for Lichtblick AG, Germany’s biggest utility offering electricity exclusively from renewable sources, said since the Fukushima disaster it has been getting nearly three times more new clients than normal, up from 300 to more than 800 per day, despite prices slightly above average.

Sticking with nuclear power would also have its costs and require public funds.

The only two new nuclear reactors currently under construction in Europe, in France and in Finland, both have been plagued by long delays and seen costs virtually doubling, to around euro4 billion ($5.7 billion) and euro5.3 billion ($7.5 billion) respectively.

The disposal of spent nuclear fuel is also a costly problem, but it has no set price tag in Germany because the government has failed to find a sustainable solution.

Many decades-old reactors are highly profitable as their initial cost has been written off, but they now face higher costs as regulators push for safety upgrades in the wake of the Fukushima disaster. One of the most pressing – and costly – requirements is likely to be a mandatory upgrade to reinforce all nuclear power plants’ outer shell to withstand a crash of a commercial airliner.

Utility EnBW pulled the plug for good on one reactor temporarily shut down by the government because the new requirements made operating it “no longer economically viable.”

But even if Germany abandons nuclear energy, some of Europe’s 143 nuclear reactors will still sit right on its borders.

Since France and other nations are firmly committed to nuclear power, shutting down all reactors across Europe won’t happen, but Merkel is now pushing for common safety standards. The topic will be discussed at the European Union summit in Brussels on Thursday and Friday.

Merkel said the 27-nation bloc, which has standardized “the size of apples or the shape of bananas,” needs joint standards for nuclear power plants.

“Everybody in Europe would be equally affected by an accident at a nuclear power plant in Europe,” Merkel said.

© 2011 Associated Press
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US Army to build a Cheetah robot that can run faster than humans… let’s hope it doesn’t get a taste for flesh

By Daily Mail Reporter
Last updated at 11:12 AM on 28th February 2011

 

But despite spending taxpayer millions on the android the Department of Defense officials don’t know what they will use it for

A new robot that can outrun the fastest man on Earth and a Terminator-type android that will work alongside troops is being developed for the US Army.

The speedy robot – called, unsurprisingly, the Cheetah – is being developed by Boston Dynamics, which brought to the world the $18million BigDog robot used to help soldiers carry equipment over tough terrain.

But despite the multi-million dollar contracts awarded by the Department of Defense, army officials still don’t know exactly what the robots will be used for, according to the company’s boss.

Scroll down for a video of the BigDog and Petman robots in action

The Cheetah-bot will be developed by Boston Dynamics and could reach speeds of 70mph. The first prototype is due in 20 monthsThe Cheetah-bot will be developed by Boston Dynamics and could reach speeds of 70mph. The first prototype is due in 20 months

Marc Raibert, lead investigator on the project and president of Boston Dynamics told the Boston Herald the Department of Defense is ‘not so focused on what the ultimate use will be.’

He added: ‘They’re most focused on developing the technology and seeing what uses they can be applied to.’

The four-legged Cheetah will have a flexible spine and articulated head, and, when built, it will be added to the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency’s impressive robot arsenal.

Boston Dynamics boss, Marc Raibert, who will oversee the multi-million project, said the army doesn't know what purpose the Cheetah will haveBoston Dynamics boss, Marc Raibert, who will oversee the multi-million project, said the army doesn’t know what purpose the Cheetah will have

It will be able to sprint, take sharp corners, zigzag and be precise enough to stop on a dime.

The costs have not been revealed, but the multi-million dollar contract is expected to take quite a bite out of the department’s $3.2billion annual budget.

Real Cheetahs – the faster animal on land – can reach speeds of up to 70mph, and the company are hopeful their robot will be able to match them pound for metal.

The company hopes to have a prototype built in 20 months which will hit between 20 and 30mph.

The Atlas robot, which looks not too dissimilar to the androids in Terminator, will be a force to reckon with, the company hopes.

It has a body, two arms and two legs but no head and will be able to walk over rough terrain, fit through tight gaps and crawl on its hands and knees if needed.

The makers hope it will be a more technologically advanced version of its Petman robot, which is used to test out chemical weapons protection suits for the army and is capable of walking at 3mph and remain standing, even when pushed.

BigDog robot
Atlas robot

Robots in disguise: The BigDog, left, was unveiled in 2008 and the Atlas, right, is set to be the newest robot built for the Department of Defense’s Advanced Research Projects Agency alongside the Cheetah

Boston Dynamics hope to recreate the success its BigDog robot had when it was unveiled in 2008.

The BigDog supports American troops by carrying up to four backpacks of equipment over bumpy and rocky ground that wheeled vehicles cannot move over.

The 2ft tall and 3ft long metal beast also comes with high-tech gadgets including laser gyroscopes, video camera sensors and an on-board computer.

It wowed the world in 2008 and the company hopes to eventually sell the dogs to farmers for transporting crops.
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-1361038/US-Army-build-Cheetah-robot-run-faster-humans–lets-hope-doesnt-taste-flesh.html#ixzz1FILbujEp

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Non GMO Month: An Interview with Jeffery Smith

Sun, 03 Oct 2010 15:53 CDT

Jeffrey Smith, founder of the Institute for Responsible Technology, is leading the movement to eliminate genetically modified foods in the United States.

Here, Smith offers an update on this important mission to protect your health, and that of your children and grand-children.

Sources:

Video Transcript [PDF]

Dr. Mercola’s Comments

Together we CAN get GMOs banned from the US. Europe was able to do it over a decade ago without any government assistance. All they did was educate the consumers, and that was enough pressure on the food industry to drop their ploys.

If we band together as an effective army we will be able to do this. Please understand that the VAST majority of people in the US do not want GM foods, so this is an EASY battle to win. All we have to do is a bit of organizational work.

So let me tell you how we are going to achieve the removal of GMOs in the US.

October is Non-GMO Month, and you’ve been receiving a lot of important information about genetically engineered foods this week.

October 10th (10/10/10) is Non-GMO Day, so I’m pleased to bring back Jeffrey Smith, the real leader behind this movement to eliminate GM foods from the US market, for another interview.

This month, Jeffrey’s organization, Institute for Responsible Technology, is launching a plan to bring their message to the necessary numbers of people to create a tipping point that can effectively drive GM foods off the market. Nearly 400 retail stores selling natural products around the country are already actively promoting the information about choosing healthier non-GMO products.

I’m thrilled to be part of this movement, and I strongly urge you join us.

The Institute for Responsible Technology (IRT) has created a variety of tools that will make it easier for you to choose non-GM foods, and this is the way to eradicate GMO’s from your local store. If no one wants to buy them, stores can’t sell them, and will simply stop ordering them. Food manufacturers will have to adjust and quickly change their ingredients or risk losing their business.

It’s really that simple!

Remember, you as a consumer is still at the top of the food chain.

The Tipping Point is Near – The Time to Join is NOW!

In this interview, Jeffrey shares some of the history of his organization and what they’ve gone through over the last 15 years to get to this point, and why it’s so important that we all act now.

“In [the beginning of] 1999, the biotech industry… was still anticipating that they could replace 95 percent of all commercial seeds with genetically engineered seeds within five years… But a single high profile GMO food safety scandal erupted in middle of February 1999.

Dr. Arpad Pusztai… has been gagged and told that if he talked about what he knew, he would be sued. Well, by an order of parliament, his gag order was lifted and he could finally talk about how he discovered that genetically engineered foods were inherently unsafe and could create all sorts of damage – just from the process itself, irrespective of what gene you put in.

Seven hundred and fifty articles were written within a month, and within 10 weeks virtually every major food company committed to stop using GM ingredients in Europe because it had become a marketing liability.

They weren’t instructed to do that by the government. They were instructed to do that by consumers at the top of the food chain.”

How many Americans do we need to convince to avoid eating genetically modified foods to achieve the same victory in the US?

We believe it’s only about FIVE PERCENT of US shoppers!

So, changing the shopping habits of about 5.6 million households may be sufficient to eliminate GMOs in the US.

That is our goal!

We already have these numbers on our side. About 28 million Americans buy organic on a regular basis. Eighty-seven million Americans think GMOs are seriously unsafe. A hundred and fifty nine million Americans, the majority, say they would avoid GMOs if labeled!

Unfortunately, no labeling is required, making your commitment to avoid GM foods all that more complicated. But that’s where we come in.

How You Can Help Others to Avoid GMO Foods

Most people want to avoid GMO foods but it is virtually impossible to do so, since the government prevents GMO labeling.

However, Jeffery Smith has compiled a resource for you to avoid the government block of information. It is the free Non-GMO Shopping Guide. We realize that with the challenging economy it is very difficult for many to donate money to help this cause, so we are merely asking for your time and connections with your family and friends.

You can really help by making this message go viral. So if you are convinced that GMO foods should not be in the US, please send this information to everyone you know; post it on Facebook and Twitter…

You can also print out the Non-GMO Shopping Guide and give it to your friends and family.

If you feel more ambitious you can also order the Non-GMO Shopping Tips brochure in bulk, and bring them to the grocery stores in your area. Talk to the owner or manager and get permission to post them in their store.

Who Will You Share this Information With?

We have the tools right now to make a national movement quicker and more complete than any time in history. One important part of this message is that buying organic whenever you can is not enough to actually ban GM foods…

Instead, what is needed is the consensus that “I buy organic whenever I can, but if I don’t buy organic, I buy non-GMO.”

Remember, this also includes dairy from cows treated with rBGH, as it is a genetically engineered growth hormone, and the artificial sweetener aspartame, which is derived from GM microorganisms.

If those of you who already buy organic whenever possible also always avoid GM foods when you can’t get organic, then we can reach the tipping point.

You can help nurture this consumer mindset by bringing information to your local natural food store owner, so that she can share it will all of her customers as well. IRT has created a complete Retailer Campaign Kit for this purpose.

You can also share information with your child’s school, your health care providers, and food manufacturers. The IRT has created information kits for all of them, available here:

  • Heath care provider kit
  • Parents and Schools educational material
  • Manufacturers information kit

Please remember to share this with your friends and family, but do so lovingly. You don’t want to make yourself a pest and risk your relationship with them. But believe me, this is a MUCH easier sell than getting them to stop smoking or eating less sugar since most do not want GMOs anyway, and it doesn’t involve giving anything up.

You may even want to share this information with your church or religious leaders. As Jeffrey says,

“There are certain religious groups that think the genetic engineering process itself violates God’s laws. So ‘GMO’ for them really means, ‘God Move Over’ and not ‘Genetically Modified Organism.'”

The Non-GMO Project

“Now the good thing about the natural products industry today is the Non-GMO Project movement,” Jeffrey says. “A couple of years ago, the leaders of the natural food industry got together and backed a new standard for making non-GMO claims, and they called it the Non-GMO Project.

Now there are thousands of products enrolled in the Non-GMO Project, and you’re going to start to see a little seal on packages, just like the organic seal.

You’re also going to see something called Non-GMO Project Verified, meaning that the claim that something is non-GMO is now backed by a third party verified system.

In the past, if an owner of a natural products store had a lot of things that contained GMOs and a lot of things that didn’t, they may be quite hesitant to start ringing the bell that GMOs were unhealthy. But now stores are becoming populated more and more and in some cases, completely, with products that are non-GMO verified.

Now you have store owners and managers and staff who are happy to shout from the rafters, our products are non-GMO and here is why.”

For example, Whole Foods has now entered all of their store brand labels, the 365 brand and anything else that has the Whole Foods name, into the Non-GMO Project. They are also participating in non-GMO month. They’ve taken a strong leadership position to try and push the non-GMO message.

Must-See Movies to Share!

The IRT has created a film called Hidden Dangers in Kid’s Meals, which is a powerful way for parents to get an initiation into the health dangers. It’s only 28 minutes long, which is ideal for local access TV.

You can simply bring the film to your local access TV station, and sometimes they’ll play it 10, 20, or even 30 times because they’re always looking for material and are open to support from the community.

There’s also a video called Your Milk on Drugs – Just Say No!, which exposes the dangers of GM bovine growth hormones. Any parent still feeding their child milk from cows injected with rBGH needs to see this film! They’ll never make the same mistake again…

Another powerful video you can share with your friends and family is Jeffrey’s Everything You Have to Know About Dangerous Genetically Modified Foods lecture.

Your Action Plan

I’ve already mentioned a number of different ways for you to get actively involved during Non-GMO Month. To recap, and add a few more suggestions, here is a list of Action Item for you to pick and choose from:

  1. Distribute WIDELY the Non-GMO Shopping Guide to help you identify and avoid foods with GMOs. Remember to look for products (including organic products) that feature the Non-GMO Project Verified Seal to be sure that at-risk ingredients have been tested for GMO content.
  2. Download the Non-GMO Shopping Tips brochure and keep it with you whenever you shop, or download the free iPhone application that is available in the iTunes store. You can find it by searching for ShopNoGMO in the applications. You can also order the Non-GMO Shopping Tips brochure in bulk and give it to your family and friends.
  3. Urge food manufacturers to join the Non-GMO Project and become Non-GMO Project Verified. This is currently the only way for manufacturers to get around the fact that there’s no GM-labeling system.
  4. Urge your local food retailers to join the Non-GMO Project’s Supporting Retailer Program.
  5. If your budget allows support this urgent mission by generously donating to the Institute of Responsible Technology.
  6. Bring the film Hidden Dangers in Kid’s Meals to your local access TV station, or perhaps your child’s school, along with some educational material specifically designed for teachers and educators.
  7. Share Your Milk on Drugs – Just Say No!, and Jeffrey’s lecture, Everything You Have to Know About Dangerous Genetically Modified Foods with everyone you know. Post them to your Facebook page, or email the links to your network of friends and family.
  8. Join the Non-GMO Project on Facebook, or follow them on Twitter.

Together, We Control the Future of Our Food

Please join us in this important campaign. Do as much or as little as you can. Maybe you can’t make a donation to IRT, but you can distribute 20 Non-GMO shopping guides to your closest family and friends.

Together, we can make a difference. Together, we can reach the tipping point and push GMOs out of our food supply.

Together, we can protect the health of future generations and help accelerate the progress toward more sustainable agriculture in the United States.

Let’s do it!

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Genetically altered mosquitoes released into the wild

http://www.sott.net

Fri, 12 Nov 2010 11:55 CST
Print

New Scientist

mosquitoe

© CDC/Phanie/Rex Features
No offspring for you
An outdoor trial of mosquitoes genetically engineered to sabotage Aedes aegypti mosquitoes, which spread dengue fever, has been declared a success by scientists in the field.

The trial is first time genetically modified mosquitoes have been released in the wild. The strategy promises to provide a new weapon against dengue, a disease that infects 50 million people annually and kills 25,000. In the past year, dengue has reappeared in the US for the first time in 65 years, and in southern Europe.

By the end of the six-month trial on a 16-hectare plot, populations of the native insects, which spread the dengue virus had plummeted.

“It’s a proof of principle, that it works,” says Angela Harris of the Mosquito Control and Research Unit on the Caribbean island of Grand Cayman, where the trial took place. The MCRU conducted the trial with Oxitec, the company in Oxford, UK, that bred the GM mosquitoes.

Combating disease

The only current method of combating dengue is to kill and control the mosquitoes that pick up and spread the virus when they feed on blood from infected individuals. “There’s no vaccine, no preventative drugs as there are with malaria, and no therapeutic drugs,” says Luke Alphey, the chief scientist and founder of Oxitec.

The only control measures are therefore to kill the mosquitoes with insecticides or monitor and restrict the small pools of water, saucers and receptacles where they breed. “The range of options really is extremely limited,” says Alphey, adding that the disease poses a threat to 40 per cent of the world’s population.

Oxitec breeds millions of males carrying an altered gene called tTA which they pass down when they mate with females. The lethal gene overcommits the gene-reading machinery of larva and pupae, preventing them from growing properly and causing them to die before adulthood, breaking the insects’ life cycle.

In the six months of the trial, the researchers released males in batches of 50,000. A total of 3.3 million were released.

“Males don’t bite, so no one gets sick,” says Harris.

Egg patrol

The researchers measured depletion of the population through weekly checks on eggs laid by the females in jam-jar-sized pots that were randomly dispersed throughout the trial plot. For the first three months or so, the proportion of pots containing at least one egg gradually rose, reaching a peak of more than 60 per cent But by the end of the experiment the proportion had fallen to 10 per cent.

The researchers conclude that the number of females laying eggs nosedived because most were dying as larvae. The resources consumed by the doomed larvae and pupae before they die vie with normal rivals for resources, which helps to reduce the population.

Since the trial ended a month ago, Harris and her colleagues have been monitoring the site to see how long it takes for the population to recover. They hope to establish how many males need to be released, for how long, and where in order to effectively suppress natural populations.

Alphey says that the Cayman trial was intended purely to prove that the strategy works. Oxitec now plans to use the GM males in conjunction with normal control methods to combat the mosquitoes.
Live trials

Oxitec has already conducted indoor trials in Malaysia, and has approval to conduct contained trials in many other dengue-affected countries, including Brazil, France, India, the US, Thailand, Singapore and Vietnam.

Alphey say he is confident he can convince even those who are generally sceptical of genetic modification to support the strategy as a mean of saving lives and preventing sickness. He argues that the GM mosquitoes will not spiral out of control in the environment because their offspring do not live long enough to reproduce.

In Australia, researchers are planning a different approach against dengue, using GM mosquitoes carrying bacteria that sabotage breeding success. Projects are also under way to develop GM mosquitoes to combat the spread of malaria.

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Bill Gates Funds Approval of GM Mosquitoes to Combat Dengue

http://dprogram.net

Posted by sakerfa on November 4th, 2010

(ActivistPost) – There has been much debate about the pending FDA approval of genetically modified salmon that grows to maturity twice as fast as a natural salmon.  Its many detractors have labeled it “Frankenfish” and say it will spoil the natural marine environment, as well as being potentially harmful for human consumption. While that debate continues, it looks like another genetically modified live organism may be approved for release into the ecosystem: GM mosquitoes.

The UN’s Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs announced plans to combat Dengue fever and other mosquito-borne illnesses with genetically modified mosquitoes designed to make them sterile or simply kill them off, as reported on the U.N news service IRIN:

Scientists fighting mosquito-borne diseases are racing to obtain approval to release genetically modified insects designed to stop the spread of dengue, a potentially fatal virus.

However, such moves have made environmentalists nervous as a science long used in agriculture is applied to public health.

These mosquitoes are engineered with an extra gene or inserted bacterium or have had a gene altered so that either their offspring are sterile and unable to spread dengue, or simply die.

“People generally do not like the unknown and are alarmist. Because there has never been a [field] release of GM [genetically modified] mosquitoes, critics are free to imagine what can possibly go wrong,” said UK-based entomologist and professor at Imperial College London, John Mumford.

He is also the principal investigator for the World Health Organization (WHO)-funded regulatory group, Mosqguide, founded to develop best practices for deploying genetically modified mosquitoes to fight mosquito-borne diseases, primarily dengue and malaria.

For half a century, scientists have released billions of engineered insects – for example, fruit flies – to save plants, but to date there has not been a field release of insects engineered to save humans.

The Malaysia-headquartered NGO Pesticide Action Network-Asia and the Pacific opposed a since-granted request to release modified mosquitoes on the grounds that “it may have environmental or health consequences as well as carry risks arising from horizontal gene transfer”, wrote executive director, Sarojeni V. Rengam, who stressed the “possibility of new health risks to humans and animals….the insect may become more virulent, aggressive, or its bite might have different effects on the host.”

The most shocking section of this release is that for the last 50 years scientists have released billions of engineered insects into the ecosystem.  There has been very little public debate about whether we should be meddling with nature by introducing billions of new organisms.  It’s understandable in regards to mosquitoes, as most people find them to be a nuisance if not a health menace; therefore, despite a lack of knowledge, most people will read this and say “good, get rid of them.”

It seems that if scientists have been able to successfully modify insects genetically for the past half-decade, then at least some of those species were originally designed to be a disease-carrying weapon.  In fact, many have reported that recent dengue outbreaks can be directly traced to U.S. Army experiments coordinated by the CIA.  In most cases of government funding for scientific research, there is usually a military origin.  The technology is even being used as another manufactured terrorist threat.

The U.N. proudly reports:

Australian researchers from the University of Queensland, funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, have received regulatory approval to begin in December to release mosquitoes infected with a bacterium that prevents the dengue virus from multiplying, as has the Malaysian Ministry of Health.

Given the absolute certainty that global organizations such as the World Health Organization are utterly corrupt with their phony pandemics indicating elite alliances and lack of true concern for human health, it is time that we all become skeptics regarding their efforts.  And when proven eugenicists like Bill Gates are involved in the funding of such technology, it should be clear by now to oppose such meddling with nature in order to help “save” humans.

Source: Activist Post

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LHC researchers ‘set to create a mini-Big Bang’

http://www.bbc.co.uk/

By Katia Moskvitch Science reporter, BBC News

Simulated lead-lead collision
The ALICE experiment has been designed for lead ions collisions (simulation)

Researchers at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) are getting set to create the Big Bang on a miniature scale.

Since 2009, the world’s highest-energy particle accelerator has been smashing together protons, in a bid to shed light on the fundamental nature of matter.

But now the huge machine will be colliding lead ions instead.

The experiments are planned for early November and will run for four weeks.

The LHC is housed in a 27km-long tunnel on the Franco-Swiss border and is managed by the European Organization for Nuclear Research (Cern).

The collider consists of four different experiments and one of them, ALICE, has been specifically designed to smash together lead ions.

The goal of these collisions is to investigate what the infant Universe looked like. Colliding protons at high energies was aimed at other aspects of physics, such as finding the elusive Higgs boson particle and signs of new physical laws, such as a framework called supersymmetry.

Cern’s spokesman James Gillies told BBC News that besides ALICE, the ATLAS and Compact Muon Solenoid (CMS) experiments will also be temporarily colliding ions.

Big Bang

He said the tests could provide an insight into the conditions of the Universe some 13.7 billion years ago, just after the Big Bang.

They will look at the Universe fractions of a second after a tiny but very dense ball of energy exploded to create the cosmos as we know it today.

Continue reading the main story 

“Start Quote

At the temperatures generated, even protons and neutrons will melt, resulting in a hot dense soup of quarks and gluons”

End Quote David Evans University of Birmingham, UK

Scientists believe that it was back then that a special state of matter existed, different from the matter the Universe is formed of now.

“Matter exists in various states: you can take a material like water and if you deep freeze it, it’ll be solid, and if you put it on a table, it’ll turn into a liquid, and if you put it into a kettle, it’ll turn into a gas,” said Dr Gillies.

“It’s all the same stuff, but those are different states of matter. And if you take materials into laboratories, you can pull the electrons off the atoms and you have another state of matter which is called plasma.”

But at the very beginning of the Universe, there might have been yet another state of matter. Physicists have dubbed this “stuff” the quark-gluon plasma.

“And this is the state of matter you have if you’re able to effectively melt the nuclear matter that makes up atoms today, releasing the things that are inside, which are quarks and gluons,” Dr Gillies explained.

Quark and gluon soup

If the researchers at the LHC are able to recreate that state of matter and study it, they could get important clues about how it “evolved into the kind of matter that can make up you and me”.

One of the scientists who will be taking a part in the experiment is David Evans from the University of Birmingham, UK.

Dr David Evans Dr Evans is one of the scientists who will take part in the new experiment

“Although the tiny fireballs will only exist for a fleeting moment (less than a trillionth of a trillionth of a second) the temperatures will reach over ten trillion degrees, a million times hotter than the centre of the Sun,” said Dr Evans.

“At the temperatures generated, even protons and neutrons, which make up the nuclei of the atoms, will melt, resulting in a hot, dense soup of quarks and gluons.”

The researcher said that the temperatures and densities that the collider will aim to create will be the highest ever produced in an experiment.

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