Health/Food Posts Tagged as 'Terraforming'
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California Has the Most Toxic Air on the Planet Thanks to Wildfires
The Camp Fire is an unprecedented disaster in so many ways. Dozens are dead, hundreds are missing, thousands are homeless. But the immediate impacts of the flames are far from the only way it’s assaulting California. As a result of all the smoke, the state is currently home to the worst air quality on the planet.
Norovirus strikes shelters for California wildfire evacuees
Millennials Are Disrupting Thanksgiving With Their Tiny Turkeys
Small birds are having a big moment.
Tiny turkeys will increasingly grace Thanksgiving tables next week, thanks to the millennial generation’s ongoing campaign to remake American gastronomy. The holiday depicted by Norman Rockwell—Grandma showing off a cooked bird so plump it weighs down a banquet plate—is still common. But smaller families, growing guilt over wasteful leftovers and a preference for free-range fowl have all played roles in the emergence of petite poultry as a holiday dinner centerpiece.
Diseases spread by ticks hit record level in U.S.
New government research shows that tickborne diseases like Lyme disease continue to rise. The report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention finds that in 2017, state and local health departments reported a record number of cases of illnesses spread by ticks.
Cases of Lyme disease, Powassan virus; spotted fever rickettsiosis, including Rocky Mountain spotted fever, anaplasmosis, ehrlichiosis, babesiosis and tularemia all increased last year. The CDC said there were 59,349 confirmed cases of tickborne diseases in 2017, up from 48,610 in 2016. In past years, health officials have acknowledged that the true number of cases is likely many times higher than the officially tally.
The findings reflect an accelerating trend of tick-related diseases reported in the U.S. Between 2004 and 2016, the number of such cases doubled. Researchers also discovered seven new tickborne pathogens that infect people.
Scathing Report Accuses the Pentagon of Developing an Agricultural Bioweapon
A new technology in which insects are used to genetically modify crops could be converted into a dangerous, and possibly illegal, bioweapon, alleges a Science Policy Forum report released today. Naturally, the organization leading the research says it’s doing nothing of the sort.
The report is a response to a ongoing research program funded by the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA). Dubbed “Insect Allies,” the idea is to create more resilient crops to help farmers deal with climate change, drought, frost, floods, salinity, and disease. But instead of modifying seeds in a lab, farmers would send fleets of insects into their crops, where the genetically modified bugs would do their work, “infecting” the plants with a special virus that passes along the new resilience genes.
Humans have been messing with the climate for thousands of years
Thousands of years ago, ancient farmers grew oats, corn and wheat, just as they do today. They also cultivated rice and raised livestock. But a millennia ago, they cleared much more land than modern day farmers do, despite having fewer people to feed. That’s because farming was far less efficient. Mechanized harvesters didn’t exist, and growers had yet to develop crops that could be planted in tightly packed rows, yielding more food from less space.
The scientists used a computerized climate model to simulate the climate nearly 777,000 years ago. The climate back then looked more or less what the climate today would look like if not for the warming caused by carbon pollution from ancient farming and modern industrialization, he said. This climate model offered higher resolution than previous models used by the team.
How Humans Have Made Wildfires Worse
Burning since late July, Northern California's Mendocino Complex and Carr Fire are among the biggest blazes in state history.
The Washington Post
Secretary Zinke Says Climate Change Is Not Responsible for California Wildfires, Blames Environmentalists
WE HAVE NO IDEA HOW BAD THE US TICK PROBLEM IS
WHEN RICK OSTFELD gets bitten by a tick, he knows right away. After decades studying tick-borne diseases as an ecologist at the Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies in Millbrook, New York, Ostfeld has been bitten more than 100 times, and his body now reacts to tick saliva with an intense burning sensation. He’s an exception. Most people don’t even notice that they’ve been bitten until after the pest has had time to suck up a blood meal and transfer any infections it has circulating in its spit.
Around the world, diseases spread by ticks are on the rise. Reported cases of Lyme, the most common US tick-borne illness, have quadrupled since the 1990s. Other life-threatening infections like anaplasmosis, babesiosis, and Rocky Mountain spotted fever are increasing in incidence even more quickly than Lyme. Meat allergies caused by tick bites have skyrocketed from a few dozen a decade ago to more than 5,000 in the US alone, according to experts. And new tick-borne pathogens are emerging at a troubling clip; since 2004, seven new viruses and bugs transmitted through tick bite have shown up in humans in the US.