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.

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)

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Malaysia Pushes Indonesia for Anti-Smog Asean Treaty

Jakarta Globe,  JG/AFP,  June 27, 2013

Haze hangs over a river in Siak, Riau Province, Indonesia on Wednesday,
June 26, 2013 (Bloomberg Photo/Dimas Ardian)

Heavy rains continued to fall on the fires still smoldering on the Indonesian island of Sumatra on Thursday as Malaysian officials pushed Indonesia to ratify a long-ignored treaty banning hazardous slash-and-burn clearing for plantations.

Malaysian Environment Minister G. Palanivel visited his Indonesian counterpart on Thursday after nine days of widespread plantation fires in Riau left the region choking on some of the worst levels of air pollution in more than a decade. The minister urged Indonesia to get serious about tackling what has become an annual problem.

The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) issued a treaty in 2002 after a similar crisis in 1997 cost the region an estimated $9 billion in losses. Indonesia, which was responsible for the 1997 haze crisis, has refused to ratify the treaty.

“The environment minister has to deal with this ratification,” Palanivel told the Agence France-Presse. “If they can ratify the treaty then they can go forward.”

Indonesian Environment Minister Balthasar Kambuaya said the nation was “in the process” of ratifying the treaty.

Thursday’s meeting came as the dangerous haze covering Malaysia and Singapore continued to dissipate after days of favorable winds and heavy rains. The number of hotspots reported in Sumatra fell to 59 on Thursday, down from 264 record at the height of the blaze, the Pekanbaru chapter of the Meteorology, Geophysics and Climate Agency said.

Thousands of fire fighters doused the remaining fires on Thursday as local police arrested five more farmers allegedly responsible for the initial fires that sparked the massive blaze. Riau Police have detained 14 people in their widening investigation into this year’s plantation fires as officers looked into allegations that four plantation companies were involved in illegal land clearing.

“The suspects are still being questioned and are under police investigation,” Riau Police spokesman Adj. Comr. Hermansyagh said of the farmers.

The farmers reportedly lost control of fire set to clear their lands, Hermansyagh said.

This year’s forest fires ignited a diplomatic row between Singapore, Indonesia and Malaysia and prompted President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono to issue a formal apology to Indonesia’s neighbors over the haze. But as the situation returned to normal on Thursday, the Indonesian Agency for the Assessment and Application of Technology (BPPT) warned that the dry season — and the annual forest fires it brings — had only just begun.

“We will have a dry season until October,” Heru Widodo, head of the artificial rain unit at the BPPT. “So it’s possible that the number of hotspots will increase again.”

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Cambodian tailorbird: A new species seen in Phnom Penh

BBC News, 26 June 2013

Studies to differentiate the new species from other tailorbirds included
analyses of their songs

Related Stories

A species of bird that is completely new to science has been discovered - hiding in plain sight in Cambodia's capital Phnom Penh.

The Cambodian tailorbird (Orthotomus chaktomuk), as it has been named, was first spotted in 2009 during routine checks for avian flu.

More specimens have since been found in regions around the city and discerned from similar tailorbird species.

Tailorbirds are in the warbler family, and get their name from the meticulous preparation of their nests, weaving leaves together.

A detailed set of tests - from the birds' plumage to their songs and their genes - has now shown that O. chaktomuk is in fact a separate, new species.

It is exceptionally uncommon for undiscovered bird species to be found in urban contexts, but Oriental Bird Club council member Richard Thomas said that earlier in the year, he "went and saw this remarkable new tailorbird myself - in the middle of a road construction site".

The authors of the paper suggest that O. chaktomuk inhabits a small area, made up largely of dense scrubland in the floodplain of the Mekong river - at the edge of which Phnom Penh lies.

Birdwatchers do not tend to target this kind of ecosystem because most of the species it supports are abundant and widespread elsewhere in Southeast Asia.

"The modern discovery of an un-described bird species within the limits of a large populous city - not to mention 30 minutes from my home - is extraordinary," said study co-author Simon Mahood of the Wildlife Conservation Society.

"The discovery indicates that new species of birds may still be found in familiar and unexpected locations."

Because of the small and shrinking nature of the birds' habitat, the team has recommended that the bird be listed as "Near Threatened" on the International Union for Conservation of Nature's Red List.

Related Articles:

Now, what about all of those other types of Humans, and how did they leave? I'm  going to give you an attribute of something that exists even today. This is difficult for my partner, for he has not heard this before. This information has not been brought in this fashion before. Go slowly, my partner.

The variety of species on this planet comes and goes accordingly as they are needed for the energy they create. So one of the tasks of Gaia is to create and eliminate species. When they are no longer needed for the purpose of Gaia's development, they cease to exist and they die out. If new life is necessary, if new concepts of life are needed, Gaia is cooperative and they are then created. The actual creation of species is something that environmentalists have not clearly seen. That is to say the mechanics of how it works is not fully recognized as something that is strongly coordinated with your weather. But you have already seen the mechanics of some of this in your long-term studies, for you have already noted the coming and going of many species through the ages. It's ongoing.

The Appropriateness of the Elimination of Species

Now, along come Humans and they see all this coming and going of living things, but they want to save them all - all the species that exist. For in their linear mind, all species should remain and exist, since they are here. The attribute of Gaia, however, is to eliminate them, cull them out, to bring in new ones. I just gave you the mechanics of the reasons species come and go. It's appropriate and is a natural building process for new species.

When the Pleiadians started to create the grids of the planet, Gaia cooperated in what was to come, knew the purpose, and what was needed for survival of this new spiritual Human. Gaia knew this since the energy of Gaia had seen it before [reason given below]. So the old attribute, which needed many kinds of Human Beings, slowly died out. It was natural. There was not a war. There were no horrible plagues. There were no volcanoes or tsunamis that consumed them. Through attrition, appropriateness, and 110,000 years, they disappeared.

So approximately 110,000 years ago, there was only one kind left, and this is science, for everything that you study will bear this out, and anthropologists have already seen it and have asked, "What happened back then at this time that would have eliminated these other kinds of Human variety?" It's a puzzle in science that I have just answered, for science looks only for physical events as triggers. But instead, it's the marriage of Gaia consciousness that you call "Mother Nature," which facilitated this. It's the same today when you see a variety of species diminish as Humans take over a greater portion of the earth. I'll call this "the appropriate elimination of unique life forms, which allow for the growth of global awareness and quantum evolution." Some species only exist to allow others to climb the ladder of nature, then they disappear. Gaia knows what the ladder looks like. You don't. ... ”

Monday, June 24, 2013

SBY Apologizes to Singapore and Malaysia For Haze

Jakarta Globe, June 24, 2013

Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono gestures while Greenpeace
 International executive director Kumi Naidoo and First Lady Ani Yudhoyono
 look on during a visit aboard Greenpeace’s Rainbow Warrior ship, which was
anchored in Jakarta on June 7. (AFP Photo)

President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono has offered a formal apology to Singapore and Malaysia for the haze that has been blanketing both countries as a result of forest fires in Riau.

The president blamed the forest fires on both humans and nature, saying the winds in Sumatra that were headed towards Singapore, Malaysia and Philippines had contributed to the thick haze.

“For this incident, I as the president would like to apologize especially to Singapore and Malaysia and hope they would understand. Indonesia did not want this to happen and we are trying to overcome this responsibly,” said Yudhoyono in a press conference at the State Palace on Monday.

Yudhoyono also criticized the Riau administration for its slow response to anticipating the haze from the beginning and called on provinces prone to forest fires to focus on containing fires in their respective areas.

“To be honest, I think Riau was quite slow in anticipating this from the beginning. But there’s no need to play the blame game. Let’s just [work] to overcome the haze and fires immediately,” he said.

Earlier, the president took to Twitter to say he would take strict action against companies involved in burning forests to clear land for new plantation areas.

“Indonesia will seriously overcome the forest fires in Riau and will take stern action against foreign companies that were involved,” the president tweeted on Monday.

Yudhoyono said the government was still working hard to contain the fire, adding the forest fires in Riau not only caused haze at home but also in neighboring countries Singapore and Malaysia.

Both neighboring countries have lodged protests and offered help to contain the forest fires. Yudhoyono said efforts to contain fires from the land turned out to be ineffective and that’s why the government had deployed helicopters.

“The government is deploying two Bolco helicopters and one Colibri helicopter to contain hotspots in Riau. The efforts through land have been ineffective,” he said.

Minister of Environment Balthasar Kambuanya previously said there were indications that eight Malaysian-owned companies were involved in setting off fires to open new plantation areas in Riau.

The eight companies implicated are Langgam Inti Hiberida, Bumi Rakksa Sejati, Tunggal Mitra Plantation, Udaya Loh Dinawi, Adei Plantation, Jatim Jaya Perkasa, Multi Gambut Industri, and Mustika Agro Lestari.

The Forestry Ministry and the National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB) as well as other related ministries had sent teams to the fields to ensure efforts to contain the fires were successful and to take legal measures against people or companies that violated regulations to start a fire to clear lands.Meanwhile, Sime Darby Plantation denied that its subsidiaries in Indonesia were involved in the fire.

“There have been no area-expansion activities in the operational areas of Tunggal Mitra Plantation, and Bhumireksa Nusa Sejati in Riau since April 2013. This needs to be emphasized given the planting process of oil palm trees can only be done every 20 to 25 years, not every year,” said Inasanti Susanto, head of Minamas Plantation Corporate Communications in a press release on Monday.

Inasanti said Sime Darby Plantation strictly adopts a zero burning policy in its operational areas and the policy has been implemented since 1985. However, Inasanti admitted a small portion of its plantation areas were inhabited by local residents to comply with Indonesian laws that require companies to protect  local residents who lived around the operational areas.

Riau Police said it has arrested two people suspected of setting of fire in Riau, including a former Bank Rakyat Indonesia official identified as HP. “One of them , S (64), a resident at Rupat Utara, Bengkalis, is being processed by the Bengkalis Police and the other one is HP (56), a Rokan Ilir resident.

‘‘They cleared the land by starting fires,” said National Police spokesman Sr Comr Agus Rianto at the National Police headquarters in Jakarta on Monday.Agus said that both men were farmers and were not related to any companies.

Related Articles:

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Chinese buy up Canada farms; is Beijing behind it?

Google – AFP, Clement Sabourin (AFP), 22 June 2013

Sheldon Zou inspects his equipment on his farm in Ogema, Saskatchewan,
on May 23, 2013 (AFP/File, Clement Sabourin)

OGEMA, Canada — With too few farms in China to feed a burgeoning population, Chinese immigrants have started buying up agricultural lands in Canada and shipping produce to Asia.

But with new investment comes fears that a generation of young Canadian would-be farmers are being squeezed out of the market by newcomers that some suspect are being bankrolled by the government in Beijing.

In Saskatchewan province, home to 45 percent of all arable land in Canada, the price of farmland has risen an average of 10 percent in the last year, and as much as 50 percent over three years in areas where Chinese immigrants have settled, according to farmer Ian Hudson, who lives near the village of Ogema.

Provincial authorities counted a half dozen large investment firms buying up farmlands in the province of one million people, but could not say if any of them are linked to Beijing, nor estimate the size of their land holdings.

Facing mounting demands from local mayors for an investigation, Saskatchewan officials began looking into the issue last year.

Andy Hu plays with his dog as he inspects
 sheep on his farm in Ogema, Saskatchewan, 
May 24, 2013 (AFP/File, Clement Sabourin)
"The law in Saskatchewan is clear that investment in farmland in this province (buying more than 10 acres) is restricted to citizens of Canada and permanent residents," provincial agriculture minister Lyle Stewart told AFP.

Similarly farm corporations must be 100 percent Canadian-owned.

However, he added, a special investigator was hired to probe "rumors that certain interests are trying to get around our law... that these people are funded by offshore money," as well as "where the investment money is coming from."

"Two or three suspicious cases" were identified that are facing further scrutiny, the minister said, declining to offer further details while the investigation is ongoing.

Stewart noted also that Saskatchewan real estate is relatively cheap, taxes are low, borrowing rates are at a historic low, commodity prices are on the upswing and hence, "conditions are perfect for people who want to invest."

But after Chinese state-owned firms poured vast sums into neighboring Alberta's oil sands -- which forced Ottawa to tighten its investment rules to try to prevent foreign governments from controlling Canadian resources -- many in rural Saskatchewan are quick to believe that Beijing is now targeting their farmland to feed its people.

"Some people say that the Chinese state is behind this. That's wrong," said Andy Hu, the 39-year-old chief executive of Maxcrop, an upstart investment firm that deals in rural Saskatchewan real estate.

"Our investors are people with money and they're looking for a good investment," he said.
Founded in 2009, the company owns 3,000 hectares (7,400 acres) and manages nearly 30,000 hectares for investors.

A former manager of a Mattel toy factory in China, Hu moved to Canada in 2004 and started a real estate firm in Alberta before relocating to Saskatchewan after seeing potential profits in its "undervalued" farmlands.

China's emerging middle class "needs more protein" and "they're ready to pay to get good food," he noted.

So Hu scoured the province in search of the best lands and set his heart on Ogema, a village of 400 inhabitants.

Real estate speculation has made it harder
 for young local farmers to buy lands,
 notes Stuart Leonard, May 23, 2013
 (AFP/File, Clement Sabourin)
His clients, most of them investors rather than farmers, and some with Canadian citizenship but living abroad, quickly snapped up thousands of hectares of land in the vicinity, which Maxcrop now leases to local farmers.

Real estate speculation, however, has made it harder for young local farmers to buy their own lands, notes fifth-generation farmer Stuart Leonard, 34.

Sporting a cap and sunglasses, behind the wheel of a monster-sized pickup, Sheldon Zou says he moved with his wife and two girls one and a half years ago to Ogema -- a long way from Tiananmen Square where he protested as a student in 1989.

He bought a 1,600-hectare farm and equipment for $1.5 million, with the help of a loan from his family.

With little actual farming experience he relied on the kindness of locals to show him the ropes. This year for the first time, he is seeding his own canola fields.

For Hu, growing crops is just the start. He points to an abandoned town near Ogema where he set up a sheep farm and hired a young Chinese immigrant and his wife to herd the animals.

Hu says he aims within two or three years to turn the operation into the largest in Canada, with 5,000 sheep, and export all of the meat to China. "The opportunities are huge here," he says.

But Leonard is a bit skeptical.

"Those big corporations, they would never be able to farm those lands themselves. Will they turn us all into employees?" he asks.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

In Battle Against Haze, Indonesia Turns to Helicopters and a Plane

Jakarta Globe, Reuters & Bloomberg, June 22, 2013

An image released by NASA taken on June 21 by the Terra satellite shows clouds
 and smoke trails from fires in Sumatra drifting into Malaysia and Singapore
(NASA Photo)

Indonesia deployed three helicopters and one rain-making plane on Friday night to create artificial rain above Riau as the province continues to battle catastrophic forest fires.

“We have two Bolco helicopter and one Colibri helicopter all equipped with bamboo buckets, and we also have deployed the rain-making Casa 212 this morning,” Sutopo Purwo Nugroho of the National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB) said on Saturday.

Sutopo said 500 personnel from the military and the National Police would also be deployed to Riau to battle the fires, while helicopters would be used to drop water and the Casa 212 would be tasked with cloud seeding.

The national government has earmarked around Rp 200 billion ($20 million) to handle the disaster.

Indonesia named eight companies with fires on their land on Friday, including Jakarta-based Sinar Mas Agro Resources and Technology (Smart) and Asia Pacific Resources International (April). The government, which said it would take action against anyone responsible for the disaster, is expected to name more companies.

An April statement said it and third-party suppliers had a “strict no-burn policy” for all concessions in Indonesia.

An analysis of satellite maps and government data by Reuters and the think-tank World Resources Institute also revealed spot fires on land licensed to Singapore-listed First Resources and Indonesia’s Provident Agro. The analysis did not reveal the cause of the fires or who was at fault.

A spokeswoman for Golden Agri Resources, Smart’s Singapore-listed parent, said it knew of no hotspots on its concessions.

Despite the “zero burning” policies, the environmental group Greenpeace said many producers and traders drive deforestation and destruction of peatland by buying palm oil from third-party suppliers or on the open market.

“Fine words only go so far but can these companies guarantee that they are not laundering dirty palm oil on to international markets?” Greenpeace said in a statement.

“The lack of government transparency makes it very hard for independent monitoring: concession maps are incomplete, data is lacking and we clearly have weak enforcement of laws.”

Singapore’s Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said on Friday he expressed “serious concern” in a letter to Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and requested evidence that Singaporean or Malaysian companies were responsible for the “illegal burning,” as suggested by some Indonesian officials.

Disputes between the two neighbors flare up regularly over haze. The Malay Peninsula has been plagued for decades by forest fires in Sumatra to the west and Kalimantan to the east.

Singapore has warned the haze could last for weeks. On the sixth day of the thick smoke, the Lion City’s pollution index returned to the “hazardous” zone with readings above 300, after spiking to a record 401 on Friday afternoon, a level considered potentially life-threatening for the ill and the elderly.

The smell of burned wood filled the air and visibility was poor, with buildings shrouded in a grey gauze. Streets in the clean and green city-state, which usually enjoys clear skies, were far less crowded than on a typical Saturday when people go out to shop, meet in outdoor cafes and have fun at the park.

Singapore’s Ministry of Education advised public schools to cancel all activities planned for the holiday month of June.

StarHub, a cable television and Internet provider, said it was providing a free preview of more than 170 channels over the weekend “as we stay home to escape the unbearable haze.”

The cost of the smog for Singapore, a major financial center and tourist destination, could end up being hundreds of millions of dollars, brokerage CLSA said in a report.

In Malaysia, the haze spread north. Air quality in Kuala Lumpur, the capital, and in several surrounding areas worsened into the “unhealthy” zone.

The air quality was now “unhealthy” in 17 areas of Malaysia and “very unhealthy” in one area.

Hadi Daryanto, the general secretary of Indonesia’s Forestry Ministry, said a team led by Forestry Minister Zulkifli Hasan was now in Riau, in Sumatra, “to find out the exact locations of the hotspots.”

“But we have to be very careful in any legal action,” he said. “We have to really find out what happened, why the fires happened and so on. This could be due to negligence, too.”

Related Articles:

Civil service urine used to make the grass grow greener, Friday 21 June 2013

Ready for use: lawn fertiliser made from city officials' urine

The urine of the 600 civil servants who work at Drenthe provincial council’s office in Assen is being turned into fertiliser for lawns as part of official policy to go green.

The council’s sanitary provisions were upgraded in 2011 and all urine from council workers and visitors is now collected and stored separately in special tanks.

The water board has been experimenting with new techniques to extract struvite, a phosphate mineral, from the urine. The phosphates can then be used in agriculture. The first packets of urine fertiliser were handed over to officials by the Hunze en Aa waterboard on Friday.

‘It is great garden fertilizer. The grass gets green thanks to civil servants urine,’ the province said in a press release.

The province says it sees its role as one to tackle environmental, climate and energy issues and to develop and exchange expertise.

Officials are now looking to find out if the fertiliser could also be used on golf courses and football pitches. However, there will need to be a change in national legislation before the new product can be brought to the market, a spokesman told local broadcaster RTL Drenthe

Plants 'seen doing quantum physics'

BBC News,  Jason Palmer, Science and technology reporter, 21 June 2013

Related Stories

Deep within plants' energy-harvesting
machinery lie distinctly quantum tricks
The idea that plants make use of quantum physics to harvest light more efficiently has received a boost.

Plants gather packets of light called photons, shuttling them deep into their cells where their energy is converted with extraordinary efficiency.

A report in Science journal adds weight to the idea that an effect called a "coherence" helps determine the most efficient path for the photons.

Experts have called the work "a nice proof" of some contentious ideas.

Prior work has shown weaker evidence that these coherences existed in relatively large samples from plants.

But the new study has been done painstakingly, aiming lasers at single molecules of the light-harvesting machinery to show how light is funnelled to the so-called reaction centres within plants where light energy is converted into chemical energy.

What has surprised even the researchers behind the research is not only that these coherences do indeed exist, but that they also seem to change character, always permitting photons to take the most efficient path into the reaction centres.

Until very recently, quantum mechanics - a frequently arcane branch of physics most often probed in laboratory settings at the coldest temperatures and lowest pressures - would not have been expected in biological settings.

The fact that plants and animals are extremely warm and soft by comparison would suggest that delicate quantum states should disappear in living things, leaving behaviour explicable by the more familiar "classical physics" that is taught in school.

But the new results join the ranks of a field that seems finally to be gaining ground: quantum biology.

'Something shocking'

Niek van Hulst of the Institute of Photonic Sciences in Castelldefels, Spain, and colleagues studied the light-harvesting complexes of purple bacteria to address the question.

The weird world of quantum mechanics

Quantum mechanics starts with the simple
idea that energy does not come in just any
amount; it comes in discrete chunks, called
quanta. But deeper into the theory, some
truly surprising - and useful - effects crop up

Superposition: A particle exists in a number
of possible states or locations simultaneously
- strictly, an electron might be in the tip of
your finger and in the furthest corner of the
Universe at the same time. It is only when
we observe the particle that it 'chooses' one
particular state

Entanglement: Two particles can become
entangled so that their properties depend on
each other - no matter how far apart they get.
measurement of one seems to affect the
measurement of the other instantaneously -
an idea even Einstein called "spooky"

Tunnelling: A particle can break through an 
energy barrier, seeming to disappear on one
side of it and reappear on the other. Lots of 
modern electronics and imaging depends on
this effect
These are literally like antennas that gather up light, and are arranged like adjacent rings.

When laser light is shone on just one isolated ring, some of it is re-released in the form of what is called fluorescence.

But what the team saw is that over time, that amount of fluorescence rose and fell - a sign that the energy was coming and going elsewhere: a coherence.

This is linked to the quantum mechanical notion of a "superposition": that a particle can effectively be in multiple places at once - or try multiple paths simultaneously.

"What you see here is this photon comes in, and it sees many energy pathways," explained Prof van Hulst.

"Where does it go? It goes to the one that's most efficient, the one where this quantum effect tells you it has the highest probability (of being put to use)," he told BBC News.

But the soft, flexible, warm conditions at room temperature mean that, as things move and jiggle - as life tends to do - that most efficient path can change. Remarkably, so did the evident path along the rings.

"Nature is very robust at keeping this up no matter what happens - this for me is something shocking," Prof van Hulst continued.

"The result is that this fluffy stuff at room temperature where everything is variable, it just works - with an efficiency of 90%: way, way better than any solar cell we can make ourselves."

'Several questions'

Rienk van Grondelle of the Free University Amsterdam called the work "a very nice proof that the ideas that existed about these coherences are actually correct".

"The system is able to overcome this problem by sampling two or three of those pathways at the same time and simply use the one that is best - I think it's very, very beautiful," he told BBC News.

Other researchers are less convinced. Daniel Turner of the University of Toronto has been working on similar problems and says that the study's primary proof - the comings and goings of the fluorescence - are "not necessarily directly relevant to how photosynthesis works in natural conditions".

"There are still several questions regarding how the results of this and other… measurements of highly purified protein extracts relate to the natural sunlight conditions experienced by photosynthetic organisms," he told BBC News.

Even the notion of what is meant by "quantum effects" in relation to biology, he said, was still up for debate.

But for Prof van Grondelle, the paper is another impressive addition to this debate.

"Of course (the acceptance of quantum effects in biology) is not going to come from one single paper," he said.

"It will take more evidence, and maybe more elaborate evidence that this is really happening. But this is how science goes."

Related Articles:

"THE NEXT 18 YEARS"–  Dec 2, 2012 (Kryon Channelling by Lee Carroll) (Subjects: You are looking  at a Quantum event, clearing a filter - Portal pineal , Higher self to step forward and communicate to You, Still remains in 3D but exposure to multi dimensions, Evolution of humanity, Intent, Mayan Calendar, Midpoint on 21-12-2012, 26.000 Years, Milky Way, Nostradamus, 1987, Beginning to a New Time, Channellers/Teachers, Center of Galaxy – Black hole, Bridge of Swords, Pleiadians, Children, Inventions – The discoveries (e.g. : Airplanes - Medicines – Radio ...): These new Discoveries were given all over the planet when Human consciousness was ready for it, New Inventions are coming, the timing depends on how the middle East problems are solved, Biology reaction of quantum energy; new radio of the future, seeing quantum energy, when it is revealed all science books will have to be rewritten, This will be an AHA moment – be possible to communicate with the rest of Galaxy, NASA, Church/religion will be effected the most by these discoveries, The quantum discovery will see the grid, life, gardens and will redefine life, DNA (3 billion pieces) evolving piece DNA are chancing, Gaia/Humanity are linked, new instruments will start to reveal the DNA variance, Evolution revealed: Autistic children have born with the removal of their 3D structure in the brain, Gaia/Spirit are testing these quantum beings  (Evolved DNA), Universe central clock = Rifs,  Globally there will be only 5 currencies, Wars on earth will be declared barbaric, Middle East, Global Unity, .. etc.)

"THE MISSING PIECE" – May 26, 2013 (Kryon Channelling by Lee Carroll) -  NEW: This information is not available on the Kryon audio site, and the transcription is presented for the first time!

Friday, June 21, 2013

India floods: Death toll in Uttarakhand 'passes 500'

BBC News, 21 June 2013

Pilgrims are rescued in Uttarakhand state

Related Stories

The death toll from flooding and landslides following heavy monsoon rains in the northern Indian state of Uttarakhand has passed 500.

The state's Chief Minister, Vijay Bahuguna, said 556 bodies had been seen floating or buried in "slush", and that the army was working to recover them.

The charity Action Aid says 5,000 people are missing in the area.

Many of those stranded in the mountainous region are Hindu pilgrims visiting local shrines.

The worst affected area is around the holy town of Kedarnath.

The Indian Army is leading rescue efforts. The authorities say troops have yet to reach some remote mountain areas.

Indian Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde said more than 33,000 pilgrims had been rescued in the past few days, but at least 50,000 people were still stranded.

The state capital Dehradun is the base for relief efforts
Earlier on Friday, 40 bodies were recovered from the river Ganges in the temple town of Haridwar, according to local police official Rajiv Swaroop.

Haridwar is downstream from the region where heavy rains on Sunday night triggered flash floods and landslides.

Flood-related deaths have also been reported in Himachal Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh states and neighbouring Nepal.

The monsoon season generally lasts from June to September, bringing rain which is critical to farming, but this year the rain in the north of India and parts of Nepal has been far heavier than usual.


State Agriculture Minister Harak Singh Rawat, who had visited the Kedarnath area, described the floods as the "worst tragedy of the millennium".

"It will take us at least five years to recover from the extensive damages caused to the entire infrastructure network in the Kedarnath area which is the worst affected," the Press Trust of India quoted him as saying.

Mr Rawat said he was "shocked" to see the extent of the damage caused to the buildings and area adjoining the shrine.

"The centre of faith has turned into a burial ground. Bodies are scattered in the area. Only the sanctum sanctorum is intact," he added.

Officials say the rains in Uttarakhand have been the heaviest in 60 years and the floods have flattened hotels and homes and washed away roads and dozens of bridges.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has described the situation there as "distressing" and announced a 10bn rupee ($170m; £127m) aid package for the state.

Philippines first in Asia to destroy ivory tusks

Google – AFP, Karl Malakunas (AFP), 21 June 2013

Personnel of Protected Areas and Wildlife Bureau use a vice to support a
confiscated elephant tusk, on June 20, 2013 (AFP, Noel Celis)

MANILA — The Philippines began destroying five tonnes of elephant tusks on Friday in a landmark event aimed at shedding its image as one of the world's worst hotspots for illegal African ivory trading.

The backhoe of a bulldozer began crushing hundreds of tusks in a wildlife bureau carpark, as the nation became the first in Asia to eliminate its multi-million-dollar stockpile.

"This act is a strong statement to the rest of the world that the Philippines will not tolerate the illegal wildlife trade," Environment Secretary Ramon Paje said.

The five tonnes of ivory came from a total of about 13 tonnes seized by customs officers since the mid 1990s, with the two biggest hauls at Manila's seaport and international airport in 2005 and 2009.

The rest of the ivory, worth many millions of dollars on the black market, was stolen over the years.

Most of it went missing while being kept by the customs bureau, a notoriously corrupt organisation in the Philippines, and a wildlife bureau officer is on the run after being charged with stealing about 700 kilograms.

The Philippines was in March named by the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) as one of eight nations that was failing to do enough to tackle the illegal trade in elephant ivory.

The others were Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Malaysia, Vietnam, China and Thailand, and they were warned they could face international sanctions on wildlife trading if they failed to take action.

Keeping track of the underground trade in raw ivory (AFP Graphic)

The United Nations and conservations groups have warned the demand for ivory is leading to the slaughter of thousands of African elephants each year, and could eventually lead to their extinction.

The Philippines was named because of its role as a transport hub for African ivory being smuggled into countries such as China, Vietnam and Thailand, where demand has skyrocketed in recent years.

The ivory is highly sought after for statues, trinkets and other items to showcase wealth.

Demand is also high in the Catholic Philippines, with the ivory used for religious icons.

Paje said the destruction of the ivory was one part of the government's action plan submitted to CITES since March to show it was trying to curb the trade.

Another was the launch on Friday of a multi-government-agency taskforce focused solely on the ivory trade.

"The Philippines will not be a party to this massacre (of African elephants) and a conduit for the cycle of killing," Paje said.

The executive director of the London-based Environmental Investigation Agency, Mary Rice, praised the Philippines for taking the lead in destroying its stockpiles.

"This is a really significant event. It is the first time a consuming country and an Asian country has decided to dispose of its seized stockpiles," Rice, who was in Manila to witness the event, told AFP.

Rice said thousands of kilograms of seized ivory were sitting in storehouses in other cities around Asia and other parts of the world.

Some African nations have previously burnt ivory stockpiles, most recently Gabon last year.

Confiscated elephant tusks are seen in
Manila, on June 20, 2013 (AFP, Noel Celis)
The UN and conservation groups warned in a major report in March that African elephants faced the worst crisis since global trade in ivory was banned almost a quarter-century ago.

Illicit trade in ivory has doubled since 2007 and more than tripled over the past 15 years, according to the report, which estimated that only about 420,000 to 650,000 elephants remain in Africa.

About 25,000 African elephants were estimated to have been killed for their ivory in 2011, the report said, and conservationists believe last year was even worse.

The Philippine efforts to destroy the tusks were complicated as the government backtracked on an initial plan to burn the tusks due to protests from environment groups about open-air fires.

A second plan to crush them with a roller was also cancelled after it emerged the tusks were too tough.

The third plan of crushing them with a backhoe, one-by-one, was expected to last at least a day. The government said the remnants of the tusks would then be burnt at an animal crematorium.