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Trial sans Error: How Pharma-Funded Research Cherry-Picks Positive Results [Excerpt]: Scientific American

Trial sans Error: How Pharma-Funded Research Cherry-Picks Positive Results [Excerpt]: Scientific American | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
Clinical trial data on new drugs is systematically withheld from doctors and patients, bringing into question many of the premises of the pharmaceutical industry—and the medicine we use
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Jesse's Café Américain: The Scandal in America That Is Hidden In Plain Sight - Privilege Blindness

Jesse's Café Américain: The Scandal in America That Is Hidden In Plain Sight - Privilege Blindness | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it

One of the great marvels of the time is how effectively well-funded propaganda campaigns and a captive mainstream media have distorted the peoples' view of reality so that they act as if they are sleep-walking.

An ongoing trend in the US has been a tax code that favors large multinational corporations with loopholes and subsidies that far too often result in an effective tax rate of close to zero, despite booming corporate profits in the face of a long stagnation in median family income and wages.  

The real unemployment numbers are shockingly high, and those jobs that are available are often part time and poorly paid.   Justice is openly administered in ways that give the powerful a free pass on grossly criminal activity, from laundering drug money to financial racketeering. The rigging of prices and markets by powerful interests, and the lack of effective prosecution of such grave abuses of power, is something that seems to be de facto government policy.


This places small private businesses and individuals at a distinct disadvantage with regard to economic viability in the marketplace.  It fosters consolidation and monopoly.  It lends itself to a cynicism that is undermining the conscience of many of those who have sworn oaths of office.  It isolates dissent to corrals and 'free speech zones.'  It breaks up peaceful gatherings of protest with pepper spray, bullets, and clubs.  It pollutes the internet with campaigns of disinformation, and silences the voices of journalists.

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Lack of social licence

Lack of social licence | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
The federal government has the authority to approve Northern Gateway without the support of a majority of residents. The question for the Prime Minister and his cabinet is should they ignore the will of the people, particularly when they've made their wishes known in a formal vote?
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Health in Africa: Corruption and misplaced priorities

Health in Africa: Corruption and misplaced priorities | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it

In April 2001, member states of the African Union met in the Nigerian capital of Abuja and pledged that, by 2015, each nation would devote at least 15 percent of its governmental expenditures to public health. Prospects for meeting that goal seem poor. As of 2009, the proportion of government expenditures devoted to health had actually declined in 11 African nations. As of 2011, though the proportion of government expenditures devoted to health had increased across the continent (to 11 percent from 9 percent), only six countries had reached the 15-percent goal.

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Who Are the Koch Brothers and What Do They Want?

Who Are the Koch Brothers and What Do They Want? | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it

The truth is that the agenda of the Koch brothers is to move this country from a democratic society with a strong middle class to an oligarchic form of society in which the economic and political life of the nation are controlled by a handful of billionaires.

 

As a result of the disastrous Citizens United Supreme Court decision, billionaires and large corporations can now spend an unlimited amount of money to influence the political process. The results of that decision are clear. In the coming months and years the Koch brothers and other extraordinarily wealthy families will spend billions of dollars to elect right-wing candidates to the Senate, the House, governors' mansions and the presidency of the United States. These billionaires already own much of our economy. That, apparently, is not enough. Now, they want to own the United States government as well.

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Science Society Seeks to Shift Dialogue on Climate Change by Showing "What We Know"

Science Society Seeks to Shift Dialogue on Climate Change by Showing "What We Know" | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
The American Academy for the Advancement of Sciences aims to convince Americans that action is needed to address global warming
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More, bigger wildfires burning western US, study shows

More, bigger wildfires burning western US, study shows | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
Wildfires across the western United States have been getting bigger and more frequent over the last 30 years – a trend that could continue as climate change causes temperatures to rise and drought to become more severe in the coming decades, according to new research.
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Food shortages could be most critical world issue by mid-century

Food shortages could be most critical world issue by mid-century | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
The world is less than 40 years away from a food shortage that will have serious implications for people and governments, according to a top scientist at the U.S. Agency for International Development.
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Agricultural Subsidies Remain a Staple in the Industrial World | Worldwatch Institute

Agricultural Subsidies Remain a Staple in the Industrial World | Worldwatch Institute | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it

In 2012, the most recent year with data, agricultural subsidies totaled an estimated $486 billion in the top 21 food-producing countries in the world. These countries—the members of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and seven other countries (Brazil, China, Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Russia, South Africa, and Ukraine)—are responsible for almost 80 percent of global agricultural value added in the world.

 

Agricultural subsidies are not equally distributed around the globe. In fact, Asia spends more than the rest of the world combined. China pays farmers an unparalleled $165 billion. Significant subsidies are also provided by Japan ($65 billion), Indonesia ($28 billion), and South Korea ($20 billion).

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Time to Wean the World Off Baby Formula?

Time to Wean the World Off Baby Formula? | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
How do we go about weaning the world off the unsustainable formula industry?
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Are the Olympics a Modern Plague?

Are the Olympics a Modern Plague? | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
Is ecological devastation really how we should celebrate global competition? Or is there a better way to do the Olympics?
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Global Coastal Populations at Risk as Sea Level Continue to Rise | Vital Signs Online

Global Coastal Populations at Risk as Sea Level Continue to Rise | Vital Signs Online | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it

Global mean sea level has risen by 212.6 millimeters (mm) since 1880. 1 (See Figure 1.) And the rate of increase is accelerating.2(See Figure 2.) Overall, the global mean sea level has risen 1.65 mm per year since 1880.3 But average sea level rise from 1993 to 2009 was almost double that long-term rate, at 3.2 mm per year.4 This apparent acceleration is a matter of concern because some 10 percent of the world lives along a coast; as sea level continues to rise, these people will be threatened by further inundation by the sea and stronger storm surges.5

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Biofuel Production Declines | Worldwatch Institute

Biofuel Production Declines | Worldwatch Institute | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it

In 2012, the combined global production of ethanol and biodiesel fell for the first time since 2000, down 0.4 percent from the figure in 2011. Global ethanol production declined slightly for the second year in a row, to 83.1 billion liters, while biodiesel output rose fractionally, from 22.4 billion liters in 2011 to 22.5 billion liters in 2012. Biodiesel now accounts for over 20 percent of global biofuel production, writes Tom Prugh in the Worldwatch Institute’s latest Vital Signs Online trend (www.worldwatch.org).

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What Is the Role for Transformation in Adaptation? | World Resources Institute

What Is the Role for Transformation in Adaptation? | World Resources Institute | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
Transformation is a word we use so often in our daily lives that it seems strange to stop and think about what it really means. But in adaptation circles, the definition and role of transformation has recently become a hot topic of conversation, in part because transformational change was an important theme of the recent IPCC Fifth Assessment Report, Climate Change 2014: Impacts, Adaptation, and Vulnerability.
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The Good Stuff – Kids, Parents and Climate

The Good Stuff – Kids, Parents and Climate | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
Who is first in line to stand up and protect our kids’ future? Busy parents! It’s The Good Stuff – Episode 15: Kids, Parents and Climate http://bit.ly/1r3jT3P
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Why nuclear power may be the only way to avoid geoengineering

Why nuclear power may be the only way to avoid geoengineering | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
Tom Wigley, a scientist at the University of Adelaide and the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), is one of the world’s top climate researchers.
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Mind and habitat: Nuclear and climate threats, and the possibility of hope

Mind and habitat: Nuclear and climate threats, and the possibility of hope | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
Though closely related, nuclear and climate threats have mostly been treated as separate entities. I, for example, have been immersed for more than a half century in psychological and historical aspects of nuclear weapons, but only during the last year or so have I begun a similar immersion in climate dangers. Why have people like me so neglected the climate dimension?
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This Company Has A 4-Day Work Week, Pays Its Workers A Full Salary And Is Super Successful

This Company Has A 4-Day Work Week, Pays Its Workers A Full Salary And Is Super Successful | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
The CEO says he gets higher quality work and better morale when he gives his workers three-day weekends.
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Uranium miners dying from cancers, unexplained illnesses in Namibia

Uranium miners dying from cancers, unexplained illnesses in Namibia | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it

Most cases coming from Rio Tinto’s Rössing mine, according to report.

 

Namibian miners who worked in uranium mines in the 1970s are dying of cancers and unexplained illnesses, a study based on questionnaires of current and former workers at Rio Tinto’s (ASX, LON:RIO) Rössing mine has shown.

 

The report, produced by Earthlife Namibia and the Labour Resource and Research Institute, states that the victims used to dig uranium ore for the British and US militaries bombs production and their and civil nuclear power programs.

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Five anthropogenic factors that will radically alter northern forests in 50 years

Five anthropogenic factors that will radically alter northern forests in 50 years | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
In the most densely forested and most densely populated quadrant of the United States, forests reflect two centuries of human needs, values and practices. Disturbances associated with those needs, such as logging and clearing forests for agriculture and development, have set the stage for management ...
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From conspiracy theories to climate change denial, a cognitive psychologist explains

From conspiracy theories to climate change denial, a cognitive psychologist explains | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
Stephan Lewandowsky, chair of cognitive psychology at the University of Bristol, answered questions posed by the public on Reddit. The Conversation has curated the highlights.
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Top 10 Jobs for Out of Work Environmentalists

Top 10 Jobs for Out of Work Environmentalists | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
How are you going to make ends meet when the collapse comes? Here are ten jobs to consider...
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Protecting the Sanctity of Indigenous Foods and Cultures

Protecting the Sanctity of Indigenous Foods and Cultures | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it

Ongoing exclusion of native peoples threatens loss of valuable sustainability knowledge.

 

Indigenous peoples inhabit more than 85 percent of the Earth’s protected areas, yet only 1 percent of the billions of dollars spent each year on philanthropy goes to indigenous peoples and the ecosystem services they support. Indigenous communities have inherited millennium-tested traditional ecological knowledge, land-based lifeways, and a holistic, interdependent relationship to the Earth. In State of the World 2013: Is Sustainability Still Possible?, contributing authors discuss the value of the relationship that indigenous groups have developed and maintained between native lands and waters, including through the cultivation of native foods.

 

“According to many native traditions, to live well is the goal of life,” says Melissa K. Nelson, contributing author and associate professor of American Indian studies at San Francisco State University. “And to live well means not only sustaining foods and a lifestyle but actually regenerating the ecological systems that people depend on to enhance their happiness and spirit.”

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Prophesying Collapse

Prophesying Collapse | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it

Lessons for today's prophets of doom and gloom.

 

In a recent MAHB blog, Paul and Anne Ehrlich—reflecting on their paper last year on whether we can prevent civilizational collapse—describe what preventing collapse would require and give success somewhere between a 1 and 10% chance:

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Green Walls and Their Environmental Merits | Worldwatch Institute

Green Walls and Their Environmental Merits | Worldwatch Institute | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it

There are many definitions of a smart city, and they all include concepts that are sustainable, liveable, intelligent, and green. Among the green concepts so-called green walls are becoming more and more popular as a pocket size remedy in a micro-urban environment, offering many social and environmental benefits for the general public. In addition to promoting a static growth of green spaces, smart cities can use those green walls to increase biodiversity, reduce noise levels, lower the urban heat island effect, and also contribute to minimizing dispersion of particular matter from traffic and pollution.

 

Furthermore, green walls can greatly help counteracting the loss of biodiversity due to urbanization. Such green walls consist of a variety of plants, pollinators, and invertebrates and also serve as habitat and nesting spots for many bird species.

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How to Address Risk and Make Progress on Climate and Development | World Resources Institute

How to Address Risk and Make Progress on Climate and Development | World Resources Institute | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
David Waskow discusses the recently released IPCC report. He suggests ways India can address risk and make progress on climate and development.

This article was originally published by The Financial Chronicle.
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World Urban Forum Highlights Opportunities for Sustainable Cities | World Resources Institute

World Urban Forum Highlights Opportunities for Sustainable Cities | World Resources Institute | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
Well-designed cities can generate jobs, innovation, and economic growth for all. But when designed poorly—with too much sprawl, waste, and inefficiency—they can divide urban centers and exacerbate pollution, inequality, and political instability.

Against this backdrop, some 25,000 people have gathered in Medellin, Colombia, for the UN Habitat’s World Urban Forum this week. The key question they face: How can cities drive growth that is inclusive and sustainable?
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