Environment

Fences threaten local fauna, instead of protecting it

In some parts of the world you can find fences that stretch for hundreds of miles, delimiting protected areas or those populated with humans. The basic reasoning is that these fences are put in place to protect the local wildlife by preventing the spread of diseases, poachers and by helping helping managed endangered populations. The […]

Cricket virus acts like an aphrodisiac, but effectively castrates its hosts

The characteristic “chirp” a cricket makes is created when the insects rub their legs, in an attempt to draw the attention of any nearby female. If he is successful and finds an interested counterpart, the couple quickly gets down to business. Interestingly enough, it’s the female that mounts the male, but that’s less important here; […]

Lions’ origin revealed by genetic analysis

The origin and evolutionary history of modern lions has been revealed through genetic analysis. This recent study suggests that the lions’ most recent common ancestor lived around 124,000 years ago. A fallen king Modern lions evolved in two different groups – one of them currently lives in Eastern and Southern Africa, the other includes lions […]

NASA cuts ties with Russia; ISS cooperation still to continue

A few weeks ago, following Russia’s invasion of Crimea that caused worldwide turmoil, I wrote a piece about the potentially dangerous consequences to manned space flight. In the article, I argue that seeing how the US space program, like many other in the rest of the world for that matter, is heavily reliant on Russian […]

Documents reveal that SeaWorld gives its orcas antidepressants and psychoactive drugs

As if SeaWorld didn’t have enough press with the shocking Blackfish documentary, a document released by Buzzfeed reveals that the marine park gives its whales psychoactive drugs and anti-depressants. According to the Ontario Superior Court of Justice affidavit, SeaWorld’s whale trainers give the animals benzodiazepine, which has a valium-like effect on the mammals. The document […]

About 29% of San Francisco’s pollution comes from China

While some governments may be more environmentally conscious and apply strict environmental policies, other are not. It’s important, however, that the whole world reaches some form of common ground. After all, we’re all breathing the same air – more or less. Just so you get a finer picture, just take note of the fact that […]

Middle school student shows the US government could save $400 million by switching fonts

How important are details, when it comes to saving money? Any accountant will tell you: really important. A middle school student in Pittsburg thought the same thing – he discovered that the government could save $400 million dollars just by change the typeface it uses. Inspired by a school project on saving ink, he calculated […]

UN court rules against Japan whaling

In what may be a  historic decision, the UN’s top court has ordered Japan to stop its annual whale hunt in the Antarctic. The International Court of Justice (ICJ) rejected Tokyo’s arguments that whaling has scientific purposes, in a case which many believe will shape the future of the giant mammals. “Japan shall revoke any […]

One of the most devastating oil spills 25 years later

By the time the oil stopped flowing, nearly 11 million gallons had leaked out, contaminating 1,300 miles of shoreline and stretching over 470 miles from the crash site. Photo: Bettmann / Corbis Shortly after midnight on March 24, 1989, the Exxon Valdez, a mile off-course in an attempt to avoid icebergs, ran aground on Bligh […]

When it comes to global warming “the polar bear is us”

The already iconic global warming images with polar bears sadly floating on small chunks of ice have acted as a double edge sword – on one hand they were impacting visual representations of global warming, showing the extent of damage which has already been done, but on the other hand, they created the idea that […]

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