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Global warming scientists foresee Sun-reflecting cities

PARIS — Scientists sketched a vision on Friday of converting the world’s cities into giant sunlight reflectors to help fight global warming but met with scepticism from fellow academics. Gradually replacing traditional urban roofs and roads with white or lighter-coloured materials would yield a cooling benefit that, over 50 years,…

DNA tests uncover hazards in Chinese therapies

WASHINGTON — A host of potential toxins, allergens and traces of endangered animals showed up in DNA sequencing tests on 15 Chinese traditional medicines, researchers said on Thursday. Such therapies have been used in China for more than 3,000 years, but have risen in popularity outside Asia in recent decades…

Chivalry at sea a ‘myth’, Swedish study shows

Imagine a giant ship slowly sinking into the sea, with the men of course standing back allowing women and children to board the life boats and themselves to stoically be engulfed by the frothy waves. That idea of male chivalry at sea is however a complete myth, according to two…

Windfarms do not cause long-term damage to bird populations: study

A major new study has quashed fears that onshore windfarms are causing long-term damage to bird populations, but found new evidence that some species are harmed when windfarms are built. The study by conservationists into the impacts on 10 of the key species of British upland bird, including several suffering…

Asian tsunami warnings test post-2004 systems

Giant quakes off Indonesia in which five people died caused panic but little damage, with warning systems introduced after the catastrophic 2004 Asian tsunami proving successful, experts said Thursday. In the tense hours that an Indian Ocean-wide tsunami watch remained in effect Wednesday, Indonesian meteorologists were monitoring offshore buoys that measured the…

Arctic oil rush will ruin ecosystem, warns Lloyd’s of London

Insurance market joins environmentalists in highlighting risks of drilling in fragile region as $100bn investment is predicted Lloyd’s of London, the world’s biggest insurance market, has become the first major business organisation to raise its voice about huge potential environmental damage from oil drilling in the Arctic. The City institution…

States with ‘abstinence-only’ sex ed programs rank highest in teen pregnancies

A study has shown that while the U.S. is currently enjoying a steady decline in the number of teen pregnancies, states with sex ed and health classes that stress “abstinence-only” education rank the highest in the numbers of underage pregnancies, according to a post at Think Progress. The current rate…

Scientists call for global ban on bee-killing pesticides

How valuable are bees? In the UK, about £1.8bn a year, according to new research on the cost of hand-pollinating the many crops bees service for free. If that sounds a far-fetched scenario, consider two facts. First, bees are in severe decline. Half the UK’s honey bees kept in managed…

Seaweed linked to post-menopause cancer risk

A Japanese study Wednesday said regular seaweed consumption among post-menopausal women heightened their risk of developingthyroid cancer, linking it to iodine in the macrobiotic food. A 14-year national survey of nearly 53,000 Japanese women, aged between 40 and 69, found that the group reported 134 thyroid cancer cases, including 113 cases of papillary…

Dementia cases ‘to double by 2030′: WHO

The number of people with dementia is expected to almost double to 65.7 million by 2030, according to a World Health Organisationreport published on Wednesday. By 2050 the number of sufferers could be more than three times the current figure of 35.6 million, the UN body said. The report published with Alzheimer’s Disease…

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