Robber fly - Nature photographer Thomas Shahan specializes in amazing portraits of tiny insects. It isn't easy. Shahan says that this Robber Fly (Holcocephala fusca), for instance, is "skittish" and doesn't like its picture taken.

Eye-popping bug photos

Nature by Numbers (Video)

"The Greater Akashic System" – July 15, 2012 (Kryon Channelling by Lee Caroll) (Subjects: Lightworkers, Intent, To meet God, Past lives, Universe/Galaxy, Earth, Pleiadians, Souls Reincarnate, Invention: Measure Quantum state in 3D, Recalibrates, Multi-Dimensional/Divine, Akashic System to change to new system, Before religion changed the system, DNA, Old system react to Karma, New system react to intent now for next life, Animals (around humans) reincarnate again, This Animal want to come back to the same human, Akashic Inheritance, Reincarnate as Family, Other Planets, Global Unity … etc.)

Question: Dear Kryon: I live in Spain. I am sorry if I will ask you a question you might have already answered, but the translations of your books are very slow and I might not have gathered all information you have already given. I am quite concerned about abandoned animals. It seems that many people buy animals for their children and as soon as they grow, they set them out somewhere. Recently I had the occasion to see a small kitten in the middle of the street. I did not immediately react, since I could have stopped and taken it, without getting out of the car. So, I went on and at the first occasion I could turn, I went back to see if I could take the kitten, but it was to late, somebody had already killed it. This happened some month ago, but I still feel very sorry for that kitten. I just would like to know, what kind of entity are these animals and how does this fit in our world. Are these entities which choose this kind of life, like we do choose our kind of Human life? I see so many abandoned animals and every time I see one, my heart aches... I would like to know more about them.

Answer: Dear one, indeed the answer has been given, but let us give it again so you all understand. Animals are here on earth for three (3) reasons.

(1) The balance of biological life. . . the circle of energy that is needed for you to exist in what you call "nature."

(2) To be harvested. Yes, it's true. Many exist for your sustenance, and this is appropriate. It is a harmony between Human and animal, and always has. Remember the buffalo that willingly came into the indigenous tribes to be sacrificed when called? These are stories that you should examine again. The inappropriateness of today's culture is how these precious creatures are treated. Did you know that if there was an honoring ceremony at their death, they would nourish you better? Did you know that there is ceremony that could benefit all of humanity in this way. Perhaps it's time you saw it.

(3) To be loved and to love. For many cultures, animals serve as surrogate children, loved and taken care of. It gives Humans a chance to show compassion when they need it, and to have unconditional love when they need it. This is extremely important to many, and provides balance and centering for many.

Do animals know all this? At a basic level, they do. Not in the way you "know," but in a cellular awareness they understand that they are here in service to planet earth. If you honor them in all three instances, then balance will be the result. Your feelings about their treatment is important. Temper your reactions with the spiritual logic of their appropriateness and their service to humanity. Honor them in all three cases.

Dian Fossey's birthday celebrated with a Google doodle

Dian Fossey's birthday celebrated with a Google doodle
American zoologist played by Sigourney Weaver in the film Gorillas in the Mist would have been 82 on Thursday (16 January 2014)

Saturday, September 28, 2013

IPCC climate report: six things we've learned

The IPCC's long-awaited fifth assessment report says it is 'extremely likely' that humanity is to blame for global warming. What else can we learn from the report?

theguardian.com, Adam Vaughan, Friday 27 September 2013

Nearly dried-up area of the Jialing River, China. The IPCC report warns we
 are likely to surpass rises of 2C by 2100, beyond which dangerous consequences
 including drought, floods and storms are expected. Photograph: Diego Azubel/
epa/Corbis

Scientists are more certain than ever that humanity is to blame for rising temperatures. The head of the United Nations' World Meteorological Organisation, Michel Jarraud, said "it is extremely likely that changes in our climate system in the past half century are due to human influence." The report says: "Human influence on the climate system is clear. This is evident from the increasing greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere, positive radiative forcing, observed warming, and understanding of the climate system."

Concentrations of CO2 and other greenhouse gases in the atmosphere have increased to levels that are unprecedented in at least 800,000 years. The burning of fossil fuels is the main reason behind a 40% increase in CO2 concentrations since the industrial revolution.

We're likely to surpass rises of 2C by 2100, the threshold of warming that governments have pledged to hold temperatures to, and beyond which dangerous consequences including drought, floods and storms are expected. "What is very clear is we are not" on the path to keeping temperatures below 2C, said Thomas Stocker, one of the co-chairs of today's report. Global temperatures are likely to rise by 0.3C to 4.8C by the end of the century, the report said.

Sea level rises are coming. "Global mean sea level will continue to rise during the 21st century," says today's report, by a further 26-82cm by 2100, but Stocker said "there is no consensus in the scientific community over very high sea level rises".

Scientists said claims that the rate of temperature rises in the last 15 years has slowed did not affect the big picture, and temperatures are going up in the long-term. Climate trends "should not be calculated for periods of less than 30 years," said Stocker.

The amount of carbon the world can burn without heading for dangerous levels of warming is far less than the amount of fossil fuels left in the ground. "The IPCC carbon budget to stay below 2C is 800-880 gigatonnes of carbon (GTC). 531 GTC had already been emitted by 2011. So we have 350 GTC left, which is much less than the carbon stored in fossil fuel reserves," notes our correspondent Fiona Harvey.




New Mini Ice Age


"The weather you have today, and all the alarming attributes of it, is a scenario of what was scheduled to happen on Earth anyway. I review again that the weather changes you are seeing prophesied by myself, 21 years ago, are not a surprise. The changes are not caused by the pollutants you put in the air. You call it global warming and that's a nice phrase, and perhaps that will get you to put less pollutants in the air – a very good thing. But what you are seeing in the weather shift today was not caused by Humans putting things into the air. It would have happened anyway in about 300 years."

"We've called this process the water cycle, since it's all about water, not about air. The water is the predominant attribute of Gaia and of the weather cycle you're seeing. More predominant is the temperature of it. The cycle is ice to water and water to ice, and has been repeated on this planet over and over and over. It is not new. It is not exceptional. It is not frightening. But it's a cycle that modern humanity has not seen before, and it's a long cycle that is beyond the life span of a Human Being. Therefore, it tends to be overlooked or not seen at all !"

"In the days of the Lemurians, the water level of the Pacific Ocean was almost 400 feet lower, and that's only 50,000 years ago. [Kryon invites science to check this out – the water level at that time.] That was a water cycle working, and the reason it was lower was due to so much of the water being stored as ice. Today you're going through another water cycle that will eventually lead to cooling. The last one was in the 1400s."

"Science sees that at about 1650. As mentioned, they are so slow there is no remembrance that a Human has of them except in past writings and in the rings of the trees. The time span of the changes is so great that environmental record keeping does not exist in the form that it does today. But you can still look at the rings of the trees and at the striations of the rocks and can generally figure out that a few hundred years ago, you had a mini-ice age. Now you're going to have another one." 



“… So now we've refreshed that which we have said before, a review. You are in the middle of a cycle that will bring cooling to the planet. It is not a heat cycle, but rather a cooling cycle. But it always starts with a short heat cycle. It has been here before. It will come again. It is a long cycle - one generation plus five years. That's how long it's going to last. It starts with the melting of the ice caps, which is far more than any of you have seen in your lifetime or those of your ancestors. It is a cycle whose repetition is thousands of years long, but one that has not yet been recorded to the books of Human record. But it's definitely been recorded in the cores of the ice and in the rings of the trees.

Thousands of years old, it is, and it happens in a cyclical way. It's about water. It starts with that which is the melting of the ice caps to a particular degree, which has a profound effect on the planet in all ways. You can't have that happen without seeing life change as well as Gaia change and you've seeing it already. What happens when you take that which is heavy on the poles [ice] and you melt it? It then becomes cold water added to that which is a very, very gentle and finite balance of temperature in the seas of the planet (1). The first thing that happens is a redistribution of the weight of water on the thin crust of the earth from ice at the poles to new water in the seas. The results become earthquakes and volcanoes, and you're seeing them, aren't you? You are having earthquakes in places that are not supposed to have earthquakes. Volcanoes are coming to life in a way that you've not seen before on a regular basis. There will be more. Expect them.

Is it too much to ask of a Human Being that if you live by a volcano that you know might erupt, maybe you ought to move? Yet there will be those who say, "It hasn't erupted in my lifetime or my parents' lifetime or my grandparents' lifetime; therefore, it won't." You may have a surprise, for all things are changing. That is what is happening to Gaia. ….“


"Recalibration of Knowledge" – Jan 14, 2012 (Kryon channelled by Lee Carroll) - (Subjects: Channelling, God-Creator, Benevolent Design, New Energy, Shift of Human Consciousness, (Old) SoulsReincarnation, Gaia, Old Energies (Africa,Terrorists, Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Venezuela ... ), Weather, Rejuvenation, Akash, Nicolas Tesla / Einstein, Cold Fusion, Magnetics, Lemuria, Atomic Structure (Electrons, Particles, Polarity, Self Balancing, Magnetism, Higgs Boson), Entanglement, "Life is necessary for a Universe to exist and not the other way around"DNA, Humans (Baby getting ready, First Breath, Stem Cells, Embryonic Stem Cells, Rejuvenation), Global Unity, ... etc.) - (Text Version)

"...The Weather...

My partner has been "against the grain" in the past years, giving you what I have channelled about the weather. Is it global warming? No. Is it going to get better? No. This is a two-generation cycle. There will continue to be earthquakes, tsunamis, volcanoes, and storms. This is a recalibration of life in the ocean, and humanity must go through this in any way they can. This is a cycle, a known and expected one, but since you haven't gone through it in modern times, it's not well understood yet. ..."


"Recalibration of Free Choice"–  Mar 3, 2012 (Kryon Channelling by Lee Caroll) - (Subjects: (Old) SoulsMidpoint on 21-12-2012, Shift of Human Consciousness, Black & White vs. Color, 1 - Spirituality (Religions) shifting, Loose a Pope “soon”, 2 - Humans will change react to drama, 3 - Civilizations/Population on Earth,  4 - Alternate energy sources (Geothermal, Tidal (Paddle wheels), Wind), 5 – Financials Institutes/concepts will change (Integrity – Ethical) , 6 - News/Media/TV to change, 7 – Big Pharmaceutical company will collapse “soon”, (Keep people sick), (Integrity – Ethical)  8 – Wars will be over on Earth, Global Unity, … etc.) (Text version)

“…  4 - Energy (again)

The natural resources of the planet are finite and will not support the continuation of what you've been doing. We've been saying this for a decade. Watch for increased science and increased funding for alternate ways of creating electricity (finally). Watch for the very companies who have the most to lose being the ones who fund it. It is the beginning of a full realization that a change of thinking is at hand. You can take things from Gaia that are energy, instead of physical resources. We speak yet again about geothermal, about tidal, about wind. Again, we plead with you not to over-engineer this. For one of the things that Human Beings do in a technological age is to over-engineer simple things. Look at nuclear - the most over-engineered and expensive steam engine in existence!

Your current ideas of capturing energy from tidal and wave motion don't have to be technical marvels. Think paddle wheel on a pier with waves, which will create energy in both directions [waves coming and going] tied to a generator that can power dozens of neighborhoods, not full cities. Think simple and decentralize the idea of utilities. The same goes for wind and geothermal. Think of utilities for groups of homes in a cluster. You won't have a grid failure if there is no grid. This is the way of the future, and you'll be more inclined to have it sooner than later if you do this, and it won't cost as much….”

Friday, September 27, 2013

'Monsanto Protection Act' To Expire, Won't Be Part Of Continuing Resolution

Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.) said the so-called Monsanto Protection Act
 favored by Republicans won't be included in a bill intended to prevent a
 government shutdown Sept. 30. (Photo by Brendan Smialowski/Getty
Image)

The so-called Monsanto Protection Act is set to expire, and will not be included in a bill designed to avert a government shutdown, according to a statement Tuesday from the press office of Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.).

House Republicans earlier this month released legislation that would include an extension of the Monsanto measure in their continuing resolution. The measure shields sellers of genetically modified seeds from lawsuits, even if the resulting crops cause harm.

Merkley has opposed the measure since it quietly passed in March, when it was attached to another spending resolution. Merkley led an online petition to oppose the extension, and unsuccessfully offered an amendment to the farm bill intended to kill what opponents have dubbed the Monsanto Protection Act. Monsanto is the world's largest seed company.

Merkley worked with legislative leaders to ensure the Farmer Assurance Provision rider would expire before it could be extended. In a statement Tuesday evening, the senator applauded those who helped him to avert the extension:

This is a victory for all those who think special interests shouldn’t get special deals. This secret rider, which was slipped into a must-pass spending bill earlier this year, instructed the Secretary of Agriculture to allow GMO crops to be cultivated and sold even when our courts had found they posed a potential risk to farmers of nearby crops, the environment, and human health. I applaud the hundreds of thousands of Americans who have worked hard to end this diabolical provision.

The rider is set to expire at the end of the month.



Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Warming 'pause' gives thought for scientists, sceptics

Google – AFP, Richard Ingham (AFP), 24 Sep 2013

Remains of dead trees, due to rising sea levels, are pictured on May 7,
2013, on the beach in northern Senegal (AFP/File, Seyllou)

PARIS — A slowdown in warming that has provided fuel for climate sceptics is one of the thorniest issues in a report to be issued by UN experts on Friday.

Over the past 15 years, the world's average surface temperature rose far slower than many climate models have predicted.

According to projections, global warming should go in lockstep with the ever-rising curve of heat-trapping carbon emissions.

But in recent years, warming has lagged. So, where has the missing heat gone?

For climate sceptics, the answer is clear. Either the computer models used to project temperature rise are flawed, or man-made global warming is just a green scam, they say.

Swedish Environment Minister Lena Ek,
 Thomas Stocker and Dahe Qin of the
 IPCC in Stockholm, Sweden, 
September 23, 2013 (AFP/File,
Bertil Enevag Ericson)
The report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) will confirm warming has recently slowed.

The document, being debated line-by-line in Stockholm, is the first volume of a vast trilogy that will be released by the Nobel-winning group over the coming months, and only its fifth overview in a quarter of a century.

Over the past 50 years, the mean global temperature rise was 0.12 degrees Celsius (0.2 degrees Fahrenheit) per decade, slowing to an average 0.05 C (0.09 F) per decade over the past 15 years.

Half of the slowdown could be attributed to volcanic eruptions, whose particles reflect sunlight, and a bigger-than expected drop in heat from the Sun's changing activity cycle, said a summary of the report.

The other half is attributed to a "cooling contribution from internal variability".

Laurent Terray with the French computer modelling agency Cerfacs said the term is used to explain a shift in the way heat is distributed between land, sea and air.

Still unclear is what causes the variation or determines its duration.

"We know that this kind of episode, of a decadal length or thereabouts, can occur once or twice a century," said Terray.

"If it (the present one) continues for two more decades, we may start to think that the computer models are underestimating internal variability."

New research by Britain's Met Office suggests the "missing" heat, or some of it, is being transferred from the ocean surface to the deeps.

Temperatures at depths below 3,000 metres (10,000 feet) have been rising since the 1990s, implying a source of heat-trapping today will contribute to warming tomorrow.

A massive ash clouds rise from the crater
 of the Mount Sinabung volcano during
 a fresh eruption on September 17,
2013 (AFP/File, Ade Sinuhaji)
Governments, which have the right to vet and amend the summary but not the main text on which it is based, are looking with concern at the brief section on the warming pause.

This reflects jitters after the IPCC's last big report in 2007 was shown to contain several background errors, denting the agency's credibility.

The panel's main conclusions were not affected but the mistakes were a windfall for sceptics.

Together with the 2008 financial crisis and the disastrous 2009 Copenhagen UN climate summit, this almost sent global warming into political limbo.

In comments of the IPCC summary draft, China, India and Norway want to know why the section dealing with the warming pause fails to refer to the role of the deep ocean.

Others complain the text is dangerous gobbledegook.

"This is an example of providing a bunch of numbers, then leave them up in the air without a concrete conclusion," says an angry US objection seen by AFP.

"(...) [T]he way it is written, it may set itself up for misleading conclusions."

Some countries take the opposite line.

Hungary says an anomaly that has lasted 15 years -- a blink of an eye on the geological timescale -- is too short and laden with unknowns to even rate a mention.

Illustration: a slowdown in global warming
 has led sceptics to say the theory of
 man-made global warming is a scam
(AFP/File, Giuseppe Cacace)
The controversy touches on the sensitive issue of scientific uncertainty.

To scientists, admitting to uncertainty is not merely honest but entirely legitimate -- something to be acknowledged and debated, to be rejected or overcome.

But admitting to uncertainty is often misunderstood by the outside world and, says Andreas Levermann of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) near Berlin, exploited by sceptics.

"They can't stop physical reality, but they are slowing down" tougher action on carbon emissions, he said in a phone interview.

Alden Meyer, with the US environment group the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS), urged the IPCC draft to spell out what is known about the warming pause.

"Otherwise, the denialists will claim that the IPCC's silence on this issue shows that global warming isn't as serious as scientists thought," he said in an email.

"The recent slowdown in temperature increases isn't unprecedented, and should be seen as a 'speed bump' on the way to a warmer world."

Related Articles:




New Mini Ice Age


"The weather you have today, and all the alarming attributes of it, is a scenario of what was scheduled to happen on Earth anyway. I review again that the weather changes you are seeing prophesied by myself, 21 years ago, are not a surprise. The changes are not caused by the pollutants you put in the air. You call it global warming and that's a nice phrase, and perhaps that will get you to put less pollutants in the air – a very good thing. But what you are seeing in the weather shift today was not caused by Humans putting things into the air. It would have happened anyway in about 300 years."

"We've called this process the water cycle, since it's all about water, not about air. The water is the predominant attribute of Gaia and of the weather cycle you're seeing. More predominant is the temperature of it. The cycle is ice to water and water to ice, and has been repeated on this planet over and over and over. It is not new. It is not exceptional. It is not frightening. But it's a cycle that modern humanity has not seen before, and it's a long cycle that is beyond the life span of a Human Being. Therefore, it tends to be overlooked or not seen at all !"

"In the days of the Lemurians, the water level of the Pacific Ocean was almost 400 feet lower, and that's only 50,000 years ago. [Kryon invites science to check this out – the water level at that time.] That was a water cycle working, and the reason it was lower was due to so much of the water being stored as ice. Today you're going through another water cycle that will eventually lead to cooling. The last one was in the 1400s."

"Science sees that at about 1650. As mentioned, they are so slow there is no remembrance that a Human has of them except in past writings and in the rings of the trees. The time span of the changes is so great that environmental record keeping does not exist in the form that it does today. But you can still look at the rings of the trees and at the striations of the rocks and can generally figure out that a few hundred years ago, you had a mini-ice age. Now you're going to have another one." 



“… So now we've refreshed that which we have said before, a review. You are in the middle of a cycle that will bring cooling to the planet. It is not a heat cycle, but rather a cooling cycle. But it always starts with a short heat cycle. It has been here before. It will come again. It is a long cycle - one generation plus five years. That's how long it's going to last. It starts with the melting of the ice caps, which is far more than any of you have seen in your lifetime or those of your ancestors. It is a cycle whose repetition is thousands of years long, but one that has not yet been recorded to the books of Human record. But it's definitely been recorded in the cores of the ice and in the rings of the trees.

Thousands of years old, it is, and it happens in a cyclical way. It's about water. It starts with that which is the melting of the ice caps to a particular degree, which has a profound effect on the planet in all ways. You can't have that happen without seeing life change as well as Gaia change and you've seeing it already. What happens when you take that which is heavy on the poles [ice] and you melt it? It then becomes cold water added to that which is a very, very gentle and finite balance of temperature in the seas of the planet (1). The first thing that happens is a redistribution of the weight of water on the thin crust of the earth from ice at the poles to new water in the seas. The results become earthquakes and volcanoes, and you're seeing them, aren't you? You are having earthquakes in places that are not supposed to have earthquakes. Volcanoes are coming to life in a way that you've not seen before on a regular basis. There will be more. Expect them.

Is it too much to ask of a Human Being that if you live by a volcano that you know might erupt, maybe you ought to move? Yet there will be those who say, "It hasn't erupted in my lifetime or my parents' lifetime or my grandparents' lifetime; therefore, it won't." You may have a surprise, for all things are changing. That is what is happening to Gaia. ….“


"Recalibration of Knowledge" – Jan 14, 2012 (Kryon channelled by Lee Carroll) - (Subjects: Channelling, God-Creator, Benevolent Design, New Energy, Shift of Human Consciousness, (Old) SoulsReincarnation, Gaia, Old Energies (Africa,Terrorists, Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Venezuela ... ), Weather, Rejuvenation, Akash, Nicolas Tesla / Einstein, Cold Fusion, Magnetics, Lemuria, Atomic Structure (Electrons, Particles, Polarity, Self Balancing, Magnetism, Higgs Boson), Entanglement, "Life is necessary for a Universe to exist and not the other way around"DNA, Humans (Baby getting ready, First Breath, Stem Cells, Embryonic Stem Cells, Rejuvenation), Global Unity, ... etc.) - (Text Version)

"...The Weather... Again

My partner has been "against the grain" in the past years, giving you what I have channelled about the weather. Is it global warming? No. Is it going to get better? No. This is a two-generation cycle. There will continue to be earthquakes, tsunamis, volcanoes, and storms. This is a recalibration of life in the ocean, and humanity must go through this in any way they can. This is a cycle, a known and expected one, but since you haven't gone through it in modern times, it's not well understood yet. ..."

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Philippe Cousteau’s Journey to Sumatra

Jakarta Globe, September 24, 2013

In ‘Expedition Sumatra,’ Cousteau and his team take viewers to see how
 deforestation has affected the island’s endangers species and indigenous
people. (Photo courtesy of CNN)

Philippe Cousteau hopes people will be “amazed by the beauty” of Sumatra when they watch his new television series which follows his trek across the island’s rainforest on CNN.

The CNN special corespondent and environmental adventurer and his team recently journeyed to see how deforestation has affected the island’s endangered species and indigenous people.

Throughout the eight-part series “Expedition: Sumatra,” which launched on Sept. 13, the team visits an orangutan sanctuary, learns how farmers repel elephants instead of killing them, and witness the changing rainforest.

“I hope people are amazed by the beauty of this special place, I hope they are outraged by its destruction, but most of all, I hope they understand the power each of us has to change its future,” Cousteau said of the new series.

“We are linking the show with online resources and campaigns by terrific organizations who are encouraging the government to establish 30 Hills as a National Park and protect this critical habitat we were filming in.”

The 33-year-old environmental advocate, who is the grandson of French explorer Jacques Yves Cousteau, said the logistics were the biggest challenge they faced while filming in a remote location.

“Traveling with no infrastructure everything takes twice as long. All the details had to be planned out in advance,” Cousteau said .

“One of the things people always seemed fascinated by are some of the basics; for much of the expedition our toilet was a hole in the ground and our shower was a bucket.”

The social entrepreneur shared some of his thoughts with the Jakarta Globe about what he learned from his expedition across the Sumatran rainforest.

What was the most unexpected experience you had during filming?

When we visited the Frankfurt Zoological Society and the staff had me help teach an orphaned baby orangutan how to find food. They gave me a rotting piece of wood colonized by termites and told me I had to suck them out of the wood to demonstrate to the baby what to do.

This is an important source of protein for orangutans in the wild so I had to do it. I don’t think I’ll ever forget the intent look on that little face as I did my best to slurp down termite larva.

What relationship were you able to develop with the local people?

One of the experiences that stands out for me was a visit to an indigenous Talang Mamak school. It was inspiring to see how engaged the young students were in learning about the truly unique part of the planet they call home. It was part of a school run by the Frankfurt Zoological Society to engage the local communities in understanding the importance of conservation. I got to test my creative skills with drawing pictures of local animals and participating in a puppet show.

In such extreme environments, what safety precautions do you take?

We couldn’t have made the trip without our friends and partners on the ground including the World Wildlife Fund and the Frankfurt Zoological Society.

From navigating issues like illegal logging and poaching to connecting with local communities and organizations, their assistance was invaluable.

Were you ever in any danger?

There was always the potential for danger. There were definitely groups that did not want us to tell this story including illegal loggers, poachers and representatives from industries and companies engaging in the pillaging of the island’s critical natural resources.

How do you think “Expedition: Sumatra” will contribute to environmental awareness?

Today, people want to experience the behind-the- scenes reality of how these types of expeditions unfold. With ‘Expedition: Sumatra,’ we made every effort to make viewers feel like they are part of the expedition team. The serialized format of the program creates a sense of anticipation of what will happen next that I think will appeal to viewers of all ages.

“Expedition: Sumatra” airs on CNN International each Friday at 10:30 p.m., Saturday at 8 p.m., Sunday at 4:30 p.m., Monday at 10:30 a.m., Tuesday at 4:30 p.m. and on Wednesday at 11:30 a.m.

Friday, September 20, 2013

Wave goodbye to global warming, GM and pesticides

Radio wave-treated water could change agriculture as we know it. Its Irish pioneers meet Tom Prendeville

Independent.ie, 25 August 2013

MIRACLE GROW: Treated water results
 in larger, healthier crops, says Professor
Austin Darragh of Limerick University
A GROUNDBREAKING new Irish technology which could be the greatest breakthrough in agriculture since the plough is set to change the face of modern farming forever.

The technology – radio wave energised water – massively increases the output of vegetables and fruits by up to 30 per cent.

Not only are the plants much bigger but they are largely disease-resistant, meaning huge savings in expensive fertilisers and harmful pesticides.

Extensively tested in Ireland and several other countries, the inexpensive water treatment technology is now being rolled out across the world. The technology makes GM obsolete and also addresses the whole global warming fear that there is too much carbon dioxide in the air, by simply converting excess CO2 into edible plant mass.

Developed by Professor Austin Darragh and Dr JJ Leahy of Limerick University's Department of Chemistry and Environmental Science, the hardy eco-friendly technology uses nothing but the natural elements of sunlight, water, carbon dioxide in the air and the minerals in the soil.

The compact biscuit-tin-sized technology, which is called Vi-Aqua – meaning 'life water' – converts 24 volts of electricity into a radio signal, which charges up the water via an antennae. Once the device is attached to a hose, thousands of gallons of water can be charged up in less than 10 minutes at a cost of pennies.

Speaking about the new technology, Professor Austin Darragh says:

"Vi-Aqua makes water wetter and introduces atmospheric nitrogen into the water in the form of nitrates – so it is free fertiliser. It also produces the miracle of rejuvenating the soil by invigorating soil-based micro-organisms.

"We can also make water savings of at least 30 per cent. When the water is treated it becomes a better solvent, which means it can carry more nutrients to the leaves and stem and percolate better down into the soil to nourish the roots, which in turn produces a better root system. Hence the reason you need less water and why you end up with larger and hardier crops," explains Professor Austin Darragh.

Extensively tested in Warrenstown Agricultural College, the technology is being hailed as a modern day miracle.

Harold Lawler is Ireland's foremost Agricultural Specialist. As Director of the National Botanical Gardens and former Master of Agricultural Science at Warrenstown Agricultural College, he has carried out more research on Vi-Aqua growth-enhancing technology than perhaps anyone else in the world:

"In the bedding plants we really saw a difference in the results; they were much hardier and tougher. You could drop a tray of these plants on the ground and they would not shatter, like ordinary plants.

"We also noticed that the treated plants needed far less fertiliser than the untreated ones. The roots took the nutrients in better whereas with other normal plants leaching of minerals occurs," explains Harold Lawler.

Impressed, Harold Lawler's research team carried out further extensive tests on a wide variety of vegetable plants:

"The iceberg lettuces were far superior with faster germination, and with carrots for example, the crops were on average 46 per cent heavier," explains Harold Lawler.

During recent successful tomato crop field trials in Italy, three of the country's largest Agricultural Co-op's were so impressed with the results that they have now decided to recommend the technology to the country's farming community.

Elsewhere, the Indian government have now concluded their own tests, which confirm that they are able to boost tea (plant) production by over a third while using far less water.

In recognition of the groundbreaking technology, the Royal Botanical Gardens at Kew, London, recently took the hitherto unheard-of step of granting Professor Austin Darragh and his team the right to use their official centuries-old coat of arms on the new technology – the first time ever that Kew Gardens has afforded anyone such an honour.

The Kew Gardens botanists were not just impressed with the research; they used the technology to restore to life a very rare orchid which had been lying dormant and practically dead in a greenhouse bell jar since 1942. Amazingly, the orchid is now flourishing once again.

Intriguingly, chickens and sheep fed the energised water turned into giants. . . but that's another story!

Limerick University off- campus company ZPM Europe Ltd, who are based in the National Technology Park, Limerick, is now manufacturing the Vi-Aqua technology.

Sunday Independent

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Newly discovered Fujian mine could produce 250,000 tonnes of gold

Want China Times, Staff Reporter 2013-09-18

Gold ore. (File photo/CFP)

Major gold reserves have been discovered in southeast China's Fujian province, according to local news website Taihainet.

The Fujian Geological Prospecting Bureau has verified the find in Dehua county after over a decade of research and investigation.

The mine is estimated to hold over 10 million tonnes of ores that may produce over 250,000 tonnes of gold. The discovery could also provide important clues for researchers to find other gold mines.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Thousands flee as Sumatra volcano erupts

Google – AFP, 15 Sep 2013

File picture shows plume of volcanic ash being emitted by Mount
Sinabung in North Sumatra, September 16, 2010 (AFP/File, Sutanta Aditya)

JAKARTA — Thousands of villagers fled Sunday after a volcano erupted on Indonesia's Sumatra island spewing rocks and red-hot ash onto surrounding villages, officials said.

Mount Sinabung in Karo district, North Sumatra province, erupted violently before dawn.

"More than 3,000 people have been evacuated from areas within a three-kilometre (two-mile) radius of the volcano, and they are all safe," Asren Nasution, the head of North Sumatra disaster agency, told AFP.

Five halls normally used for traditional cultural ceremonies had been converted into shelters for those displaced.

Sutopo Purwo Nugroho, national disaster agency spokesman, said 3,710 people had so far been evacuated.

Nugroho said it was second recent eruption of Sinabung. The volcano was dormant for nearly 100 years before erupting in August and September 2010, forcing about 12,000 people to flee.

Indonesia has dozens of active volcanoes and straddles major tectonic fault lines known as the "Ring of Fire" between the Pacific and Indian oceans.

Last month five people were killed and hundreds evacuated when a volcano on a tiny island in East Nusa Tenggara province erupted.

The country's most active volcano, Mount Merapi in central Java, killed more than 350 people in a series of violent eruptions in 2010.

Related Article:


Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Indonesian Minister ‘Shocked’ at Harrison Ford Climate Interview

Jakarta Globe – AFP, September 10, 2013

Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono speaks to US actor
Harrison Ford during an interview at the presidential palace in Jakarta.
(AFP Photo/Presidential Palace/Abror Rizki)

Indonesia’s forestry minister has accused Hollywood legend Harrison Ford of subjecting him to a rude interview on climate change that left him “shocked,” an official said Tuesday.

The “Indiana Jones” and “Star Wars” actor, who is making part of an environmental documentary in Indonesia, attacked the minister with questions during the encounter on Monday, said presidential adviser Andi Arief.

The adviser accused Ford and his crew of “harassing state institutions” and said the 71-year-old could even be deported — although he was due to leave Indonesia later Tuesday anyway.

Forestry Minister Zulkifli Hasan told reporters that he had been angered by Ford’s approach during the interview in the capital Jakarta.

“His emotions were running very high,” the minister was quoted as saying by the state-run Antara news agency.

“I understand the American man just came here to see Tesso Nilo [a national park on Sumatra island] and wanted violators to be caught the same day.”

The minister added he was not given the chance to explain the challenges of catching people who break the law in Indonesia’s sprawling rainforests, where illegal logging is rampant.

“I was only given the opportunity to say one or two sentences during the interview,” he said.

Arief said the minister thought there would have been some time to discuss the interview before it began.

But in the event he was “shocked that as soon as his [Ford's] crew came in, they started filming and interviewing him… and attacking him with questions.”

“There’s no privilege for him although he is a great a actor,” he said. “His crew and those who were helping him in Indonesia must be questioned to find out their motives for harassing a state institution.”

“If necessary, we will deport him,” he added.

Ford, who has supported numerous environmental causes in recent years, has travelled to several places in Indonesia to make part of a series on climate change called “Years of Living Dangerously” for US television network Showtime.

He also met with President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono on Tuesday.

As Southeast Asia’s largest economy grows rapidly, swathes of biodiverse forests across the archipelago of 17,000 islands have been cleared to make way for paper and palm oil plantations, as well as for mining and agriculture.

Agence France-Presse

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Japan to Help Indonesia Cut Greenhouse Emissions

Jakarta Globe, Tito Summa Siahaan, September 1, 2013

An aerial shot showing deforestated land in Tesso Nilo National Park, Riau.
(EPA Photo/Bagus Idahono)

Indonesia and Japan have signed a deal to smooth the way for Japanese companies who wish to help Indonesia reduce greenhouse emissions through improved technology and conservation schemes.

With Friday’s signing of a bilateral agreement known as a joint crediting mechanism (JCM), the two countries have cut out intermediaries in greenhouse-friendly technology transfer, investment, financing and capacity building.

Currently, under the Kyoto greenhouse protocol’s Clean Development Mechanism, the United Nations must sign off on each Japanese company’s participation, after a lengthy screening process.

The new agreement will help Indonesia cash in more rapidly on Japanese companies’ attempts to offset their own industrial carbon emissions by gaining credit for helping avoid emissions elsewhere in the world.

According to Rizal Affandi Sukma, deputy minister for economic and international financing cooperation, the Japanese government needs the help of developing countries like Indonesia to meet its commitment to reduce its carbon emissions by 25 percent by 2020. “Japan is already very efficient so they have little room to improve at home,” Rizal said.

As part of the JCM agreement, the Japanese government has conducted feasibility studies in generating carbon emissions reductions in Indonesia through renewable energy, forestry, energy conservation, agriculture, transportation, carbon storage and waste treatment.

Indonesia has also set its own ambitious 2020 targets, of 26 percent emissions reduction under its own steam, and 41 percent reductions with international assistance through schemes such as that signed on Friday.

Foreign assistance in reducing greenhouse emissions has not gone smoothly so far. The Rimba Raya Biodiversity Reserve, a private sector effort backed by Russian energy giant Gazprom and German Insurer Allianz, saw the Ministry of Forestry slash its project area in half, handing the land over to a palm oil company.

In July, Australia shelved its $43 million Kalimantan Forest Carbon Partnership project without explanation.