Saturday, 10 March 2012

More stories from around the world ..... KNOW<>CARE<>ACT

10 March 2012

Military aims for energy efficiency. The Pentagon unveiled a plan Friday to change the way the military uses energy, saying it wants to bring more-efficient technology to the battlefield in order to save lives and money. Defense officials depicted the plan as a way to protect soldiers, amid criticism from Republicans on Capitol Hill that the alternative-energy push is wasteful. Wall Street Journal

Mexico withers under worst drought in 71 years. Some 2.5 million Mexicans are affected by an extreme drought across two-thirds of Mexico's states, which could cause widespread hunger for years to come. Food production has gone down by 40 percent across Mexico because of the drought, according to the National Confederation of Peasants. Christian Science Monitor

Methane hydrates: Fire and ice. After the Fukushima nuclear accident, Japan shut down most of its nuclear power plants. Now, researchers are drilling deep into the ocean in search of a new source of energy called methane hydrates. Tapping the methane stored in ice could help Japan fill its nuclear energy gap, and is a huge potential source of energy for the world. Living On Earth

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Success of today's energy standards spurs call for more. Energy efficiency standards will save consumers and businesses $1.1 trillion and dramatically reduce greenhouse gas pollution and other emissions by 2035, according to a study released this week. Consumer Reports

Fracking could hinder underground carbon storage. Drilling zones overlap significantly with places suitable for storing carbon dioxide below the surface, according to a new study. As a result, researchers estimate that drilling could damage as much as 80% of U.S. carbon storage capacity. Chemical & Engineering News

Cincinnati joins clean air cities campaign. The Clean Air Cities campaign is a nationwide effort to urge cities to be proactive in speaking to the Obama administration to use the Clean Air Act to make worthwhile reductions in greenhouse gas pollution and slow global warming. Cincinnati City Beat

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Caribbean looks ahead to stave off fresh water scarcity. Two years after a severe drought wreaked havoc with a number of Caribbean countries, some are now adopting new strategies in a bid to prevent a repeat of a situation where countries were rationing water and imposing strict restrictions on residents. Inter Press Service

Mild winter has proven fatal for countless New Jersey honeybees. Beekeepers are used to the typical threats: colony collapse, varroa mites and cold snaps in the spring, to name a few. The warm winter, however, may pose the biggest threat to New Jersey’s honeybees this year. Newark Star-Ledger

Can an early spring confuse nature's clock? It's been an unusually warm winter in some parts of the country, with springtime temperatures and very little snow. How is nature responding? Purdue entomologist Tom Turpin and horticulturalist Kristin Schleiter of the New York Botanical Garden discuss how an early spring affects flower buds, beetles and bees. Science Friday

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New research project aims to find ways to grow strawberries without pesticides. A joint research project between the California Department of Pesticide Regulation and California Strawberry Commission hopes to find nonchemical alternatives to fumigants and to reduce fumigant emissions, which can increase global warming. Ventura County Star

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Inside the Keystone pipeline: How much would it really help US consumers? Politicians paint a rosy picture of lower gas prices and abundant supply, but Canadian firms behind the Keystone pipeline expect it to supply Gulf Coast export markets and raise Midwest oil prices. Christian Science Monitor

China's booming solar and wind sector may be put on hold. For observers of Monday's opening session of the annual gathering of the National People's Congress, Premier Wen Jiabao's announcement that China "will put an end to blind expansion in industries such as solar energy and wind power" was a red flag. Science

Republican presidential win would lose US ground to China - UN climate chief. The United Nations climate chief has warned that US voters risk ceding progress to China and Europe if they opt for a presidential candidate who denies climate change. The Guardian

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