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Earth’s degradation threatens major health gains: study

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AFP/AFP/File - The unprecedented degradation of Earth's natural resources coupled with climate change could reverse major gains in human health over the last 150 years, according to a sweeping scientific review published less

The unprecedented degradation of Earth’s natural resources coupled with climate change could reverse major gains in human health over the last 150 years, according to a sweeping scientific review published Thursday.

“We have been mortgaging the health of future generations to realise economic and development gains in the present,” said the report, written by 15 leading academics and published in the peer-reviewed medical journal The Lancet.

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“By unsustainably exploiting nature’s resources, human civilisation has flourished but now risks substantial health effects from the degradation of nature’s life support systems in the future.”

Climate change, ocean acidification, depleted water sources, polluted land, over-fishing, biodiversity loss all unintended by-products of humanity’s drive to develop and prosper  “pose serious challenges to the global health gains of the past several decades”, especially in poorer nations, the 60-page report concludes.

The likely impacts on global health of climate change, ranging from expanded disease vectors to malnourishment, have been examined by the UN’s panel of top climate scientists. But the new report, entitled Safeguarding Human Health in the Anthropocene Epoch, takes an even broader view.

The “Anthropocene” is the name given by many scientists to the period ?- starting with mass industrialisation -? in which human activity has arguably reshaped Earth?s bio-chemical make-up.

“This is the first time that the global health community has come out in a concerted way to report that we are in real danger of undermining the core ecological systems that support human health,” said Samuel Myers, a scientist at Harvard University and one the authors.

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– Danger of bee decline –

A companion study on the worldwide decline of bees and other pollinators, led by Myers and also published in The Lancet, illustrates one way this might happen.

 


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2020 Election

Trump chief of staff Mark Meadows committed campaign finance crimes: watchdog group

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The government ethics watchdog organization Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) filed a complaint on Friday accusing White House chief of staff Mark Meadows of campaign finance crimes for allegedly spending thousands of dollars in campaign funds on personal expenses, including clubs, gourmet cupcakes, a jeweler in Washington and lodging at the president's hotel.

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2020 Election

Win or lose — Trump is about to unleash hell

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With poll numbers staying put and the odds of a Joe Biden win in Tuesday's election looking good — possibly by a decisive margin — there's mounting dread about how Donald Trump will behave after a defeat. After all, Trump is a sociopathic narcissist with the emotional control of a — well, I won't insult toddlers with the comparison — and he lives in mortal terror of being viewed as a loser. He's already made clear that he will refuses to concede, no matter what, and he's grasping desperately for any way to get legal ballots thrown out so he can steal the election.

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2020 Election

GOP senator offended LDS community after likening Trump to a ‘selfless’ Book of Mormon hero: report

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Politics and religion are colliding out west after comments a Republican senator made while stumping for the president.

"Sen. Mike Lee drew criticism from members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints this week after comparing President Donald Trump to Captain Moroni, a heroic and selfless figure in the Book of Mormon," The Arizona Republic reported Friday evening.

"To my Mormon friends, my Latter-day Saint friends, think of him as Captain Moroni," Lee (R-UT) said, pointing to Trump. "He seeks not power, but to pull it down. He seeks not the praise of the world or the ‘fake news,’ but he seeks the well-being and the peace of the American people."

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