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24/7 Farm  News Coverage
January 19, 2017
Nothing to eat but cactus in Madagascar's hunger capital

Anjapaly, Madagascar (AFP) Jan 18, 2017
A black ribbon is strapped around Karaniteny's straw hat: a symbol of mourning after she lost her 10-year-old daughter Vahana to the devastation of severe drought in October. Vahana died after eating red cactus fruit, the only plant growing in the drought-ravaged district of Anjapaly in southern Madagascar, the poorest spot on the large Indian Ocean island. Nearly a million people are hungry and in urgent need of food aid in the area, according to the World Food Programme (WFP), in a crisis that ... read more

Bay Area methane emissions may be double what we thought
Emissions of methane - a potent climate-warming gas - may be roughly twice as high as officially estimated for the San Francisco Bay Area. Most of the emissions come from biological sources, such as ... more
Drought may add famine to Somalia's humanitarian woes
A serious drought has left parts of Somalia at risk of famine and 320,000 children are already severely malnourished and in need of care, the UN humanitarian agency said Tuesday. ... more
Tiny plants with huge potential
Wolffia globosa, a tiny, rootless duckweed, or water lens, apparently has what it takes to achieve great things. Researchers at the University of Jena (Germany), together with colleagues in In ... more
Anthropogenic groundwater extraction impacts climate
Anthropogenic groundwater exploitation changes soil moisture and land-atmosphere water and energy fluxes, and essentially affects the ecohydrological processes and the climate system. In over-exploi ... more
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Can the 'greening' be greener?
The EU introduced the new "greening" instrument into the Common Agricultural Policy in 2015, with the intention to slow the rapid loss of biodiversity in agricultural areas. The idea is quite simple ... more
Affordable water in the US: A burgeoning crisis
If water rates continue rising at projected amounts, the number of U.S. households unable to afford water could triple in five years, to nearly 36 percent, finds new research by a Michigan State Uni ... more
Workers enter rebel area to restore Damascus water: state media
Syrian government workers entered a formerly rebel-held area near Damascus on Friday to begin restoring water to the capital after weeks of shortages, state media reported. ... more
Grasslands hold potential for increased food production
About 40% of natural grasslands worldwide have potential to support increased livestock grazing, according to a new study published in the journal Global Change Biology. This translates to a potenti ... more
California singing in the rain
A series of storms that have rolled across California in the past week dumping heavy rain and snow could herald the end of a punishing historic drought, officials said Thursday. ... more

Europe urged to expand pesticide ban for bees' sake

Study: U.S. water affordability crisis on the horizon
Water is relatively cheap when it comes to food and housing, which is why it is sometimes ignored in discussions about public assistance for necessities. ... more
Russia's Vavilov institute, guardian of world's lost plants
Stacked high beneath vaulted ceilings in a tsarist-era building, cabinets store the seeds of thousands of plant varieties, many long gone from their original areas of habitat or cultivation. ... more

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China to launch electromagnetic monitoring satellite for earthquake study
China will launch a satellite this year to gather electromagnetic data that may be used in monitoring and forecasting earthquakes. According to China's earthquake administrative agencies on Tuesday, the satellite will be launched in the latter half of this year. Movements of the Earth's crust generate electromagnetic radiation which can be observed from space. By collecting dat ... more
Sentinel-2B launch preparations off to a flying start

China receives imagery from high-resolution remote sensing satellites

Study tracks 'memory' of soil moisture

Oregon deploys DT Research Rugged Tablets for Construction Projects
DT Research, the leading designer and manufacturer of purpose-built computing solutions for vertical markets, this week announced the successful deployment of the DT391GS Rugged GNSS Tablets for the Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT). The DT391GS tablets with Intel Celeron Dual Core Processors are used as Inspector Positioning Tablets with the critical hardware and software needed ... more
Clocks 'failed' onboard Europe's navigation satellites: ESA

Russia, China Work on Joint High-Precision Satellite Navigation System

Raytheon completes qualification testing of next-gen GPS Launch and Checkout System

HSBC funding Indonesian forest destruction: Greenpeace
Greenpeace on Tuesday accused banking giant HSBC of helping to arrange billions of dollars in financing for companies whose palm oil operations have been blamed for destroying vast swathes of Indonesian rainforest. The environmental group said the British bank had broken its own guidelines which ban supporting palm oil companies involved in unsustainable practices as it was part of syndicate ... more
Climate policies alone will not save Earth's most diverse tropical forests

Trade-offs between economic growth and deforestation

Microbes rule in 'knee-high tropical rainforests'

Iowa State engineer helps journal highlight how pyrolysis can advance the bioeconomy
A special issue of the journal Energy Technology details the latest advances in pyrolysis technologies for converting biomass into fuels, chemicals and fertilizers. Two pyrolysis experts are guest editors of the issue: Robert C. Brown, the director of Iowa State University's Bioeconomy Institute, an Anson Marston Distinguished Professor in Engineering and the Gary and Donna Hoover Chair in ... more
Handheld sensor unit determines biofuel content of diesel blends

Populus dataset holds promise for biofuels, materials, metabolites

Handheld Sensor Unit Determines Biofuel Content Of Diesel Blends

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Renewable energy investment value fell 18% in 2016: study
Global investment in renewable energy dropped by 18 percent in 2016 due to sharp falls in equipment prices and a slowdown in China and Japan, a study found Thursday. After reaching record levels in 2015, investment fell last year to $287.5 billion, according to researchers at Bloomberg New New Energy Finance (BNEF). The fall was due in part to "further sharp falls in equipment prices, pa ... more
CWRU directly measures how perovskite solar films efficiently convert light to power

Report details how renewables can decarbonise the energy sector

Saudi to launch multi-billion renewable scheme: minister

Obama puts offshore North Carolina on wind energy map
Thousands of acres offshore North Carolina are set aside for potential wind energy in one of the final moves under the Obama presidency, the government said. "This is a significant milestone for North Carolina and our country as we continue to make progress on diversifying our nation's energy portfolio," Walter Cruickshank, the acting director of the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, s ... more
DONG Energy makes wind energy debut

DNV GL certifies new prototype of Siemens' 8 MW Offshore Wind Turbine

New York sets bar high for offshore wind

People aren't the only beneficiaries of power plant carbon standards
When the Environmental Protection Agency finalized the Clean Power Plan in 2015 it exercised its authority to regulate carbon dioxide emissions to protect public welfare. The Plan, now the focus of escalating debate, also put the nation on course to meet its goals under the Paris Climate Agreement. Given that other pollutants are emitted from power plants - along with carbon dioxide - research h ... more
China to cut coal capacity by 800 million tonnes by 2020

Norway fund blacklists more coal groups over climate concerns

Black coal, thin pickings: China's miners face decline

Robert Chow: Hong Kong's pro-Beijing firebrand
Hong Kong is home to a host of democracy activists angering China but one rabble-rouser - a silver-haired former radio host - has been embraced by Beijing for targeting supporters of a split from the mainland. Straight-talking and a seasoned media operator, Robert Chow is Hong Kong's most prominent pro-Beijing activist, best-known for orchestrating a public campaign against massive democra ... more
Hong Kong leader slams independence movement in final speech

Hong Kong activists declare 'war' after appeal bid snub

Hong Kong leadership hopeful pledges to heal city's 'heartache'

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Robots need 'kill switches', warn Euro MPs
The unstoppable rise of robots in our everyday lives requires urgent EU rules such as "kill switches", European Parliament members warned Thursday as they passed a resolution urging Brussels into action on automaton ethics. Mady Delvaux, a Socialist MEP from Luxembourg, led the campaign and warned that Europe is passively standing by as robots take an increasingly powerful role that will gro ... more
Scientists proposed a novel regional path tracking scheme for autonomous ground vehicles

Cheery robots may make creepy companions, but could be intelligent assistants

Amazon Alexa virtual assistant shines at tech show

Researchers develop environmentally friendly soy air filter
Washington State University researchers have developed a soy-based air filter that can capture toxic chemicals, such as carbon monoxide and formaldehyde, which current air filters can't. The research could lead to better air purifiers, particularly in regions of the world that suffer from very poor air quality. The engineers have designed and tested the materials for the bio-based filter a ... more
Slovenian dogs sent 'crazy' by road salting mix-up

US contributes $500-million to UN Green Climate Fund

Air pollution and lack of physical activity pose competing threats to children in China

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Chile forest fire ravages 50 hectares, destroys homes
A huge forest fire has ravaged 50 hectares and destroyed homes in western Chile, prompting the authorities to issue a red alert on Monday. At least one person was known to have been hurt after the fire broke out on a hill near the major port city of Valparaiso, the National Emergencies Office (ONEMI) said in a report. The blaze has destroyed five homes and 50 hectares of woodland, ONEMI ... more
Satellite photo reveals multiple fires burning in Argentina

Hundreds flee wildfires near Jerusalem

NASA Sets Space Fire in Second Round of Fire Safety Experiments

How China is poised for marine fisheries reform
As global fish stocks continue sinking to alarmingly low levels, a joint study by marine fisheries experts from within and outside of China concluded that the country's most recent fisheries conservation plan can achieve a true paradigm shift in marine fisheries management - but only if the Chinese government embraces major institutional reform. The researchers, led by Stanford University' ... more
The global chain that produces your fish

Bay Area methane emissions may be double what we thought

Short-lived greenhouse gases cause centuries of sea-level rise

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Lightning kills six at Zimbabwe wake
Lightning killed six people at a funeral wake in Zimbabwe as they sheltered under a tree to escape torrential rain, police said Wednesday. Heavy rains have deluged Zimbabwe in recent days, causing floods and killing people who attempted to cross rivers that had burst their banks. The lightning struck the mourners Sunday in Binga in northwest Zimbabwe, near the border with Zambia. "T ... more
Beaches packed as Sydney swelters through heatwave

Large-scale tornado outbreaks increasing in frequency

Thousands evacuated as storm hits southern Philippines

Davos: China's Xi says no one will win trade war
Chinese President Xi Jinping presented himself as a champion of globalisation Tuesday, lecturing the world elite in Davos on the dangers of protectionism and the futility of trade wars The leader of the world's second largest economy became the first Chinese president to address the World Economic Forum, where 3,000 well-heeled delegates from government, business, science and the arts have g ... more
First 'Silk Road' train arrives in UK from China

Chinese leader meets Davos elite as voters revolt

Distraught Davos finds globalisation saviour in China's Xi

Extreme space weather-induced blackouts could cost US more than $40 billion daily
The daily U.S. economic cost from solar storm-induced electricity blackouts could be in the tens of billions of dollars, with more than half the loss from indirect costs outside the blackout zone, according to a new study. Previous studies have focused on direct economic costs within the blackout zone, failing to take into account indirect domestic and international supply chain loss from ... more
ALMA starts observing the sun

Next-generation optics offer the widest real-time views of vast regions of the sun

NASA moon data provides more accurate 2017 eclipse path

How to be winner in the game of evolution
A new study by University of Arizona biologists helps explain why different groups of animals differ dramatically in their number of species, and how this is related to differences in their body forms and ways of life. For millennia, humans have marveled at the seemingly boundless variety and diversity of animals inhabiting the Earth. So far, biologists have described and catalogued about ... more
Myanmar's 'smiling' Irrawaddy dolphins on brink of extinction

Central Asia ready to be repopulated with tigers, new study says

Deciphering the beetle exoskeleton with nanomechanics

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