Agriculture Minister Barnaby Joyce is touring China in a bid to assuage local farmers’ fears over Australia’s ambition to be the “food bowl of Asia” as the two countries attempt to reach a conclusion to talks over a free-trade agreement.
"Forest ecosystems have been exposed to climate change for more than 100 years, whereas the consequences on forest growth remain elusive. Based on the oldest existing experimental forest plots in Central Europe, we show that, currently, the dominant tree species Norway spruce and European beech exhibit significantly faster tree growth...."
Scientists have taken a major step forward in the production of hydrogen from water which could lead to a new era of cheap, clean and renewable energy. Chemists from the University of Glasgow report in a new paper in Sciencetoday (Friday 12 September) on a new form of hydrogen production which is 30 times faster than the current state-of-the-art method. The process also solves common problems associated with generating electricity from renewable sources such as solar, wind or wave energy.
"... Last week, theWorld Health Organization warned that, by early October, there may be thousands of new cases per week in Liberia, Sierra Leone, Guinea and Nigeria. What is not getting said publicly, despite briefings and discussions in the inner circles of the world’s public health agencies, is that we are in totally uncharted waters and that Mother Nature is the only force in charge of the crisis at this time...."
Cuba says its economy is suffering a “systematic worsening” due to a US embargo, the consequences of which Havana places at $1.1 trillion since Washington imposed the sanctions in 1960, taking into account the depreciation of the dollar against gold.
Our bodies contain trillions of symbiotic microorganisms that aid us in everyday life, from digestive functions to immune system benefits. So what happens to them when we die? As it turns out, they turn on us. Learn...
Interesting new chemical genetics study identifies a compound that alleviates some of the low-Pi responses in plants. Treated plants grow better on low P, "this reveals that the developmental restrictions induced by Pi starvation are not a consequence of metabolic limitation, but also result from genetic regulation." (OPEN in Plant Phys)
"If countries enforced existing biofuels mandates using ethanol, their gasoline use in 2012 would suggest that the top 10 ethanol consumers would require 3.5 billion gallons of the renewable fuel. The next 10 would add another 393 million gallons of demand....."
The capital of Piedmont has been lured to open source with the prospect of doing away with licences and delaying the refresh cycle.
Norman Warthmann's insight:
XP licenses are phasing out. The existing hardware will be too slow for resource-hungry windows 8, and ubuntu is free: 2 birds with one stone. They can keep using their old machines, and don't need to pay license fees. Gosh, I wish everybody would see the obvious and do the same.
Criticism of the food industry has itself become a niche industry. But the tendency to embrace a US-centric conception of how the industry works risks masking local variants and inhibiting a targeted response…