Monday, July 31, 2006

How's this for a good idea

It's good to see that people are really starting to think laterally about maintaining our levels of power usage but with renewable sources
British engineers are converting street vibrations into electricity and predict a working prototype by Christmas capable of powering facility lights in the busiest areas of a city.
'We can harvest between 5 to 7 watts of energy per footstep that is currently being wasted into the ground,' says Claire Price, director of The Facility Architects, the British firm heading up the Pacesetters Project. 'And a passing train can generate very useful energy to run signaling or to power lights.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

You know you're reading something bad ...

When it contains quotes like:

More than 60% of all processed food in Britain today contains soya in some form, according to food industry estimates. It is in breakfast cereals, cereal bars and biscuits, cheeses, cakes, dairy desserts, gravies, noodles, pastries, soups, sausage casings, sauces and sandwich spreads. Soya, crushed, separated and refined into its different parts, can appear on food labels as soya flour, hydrolysed vegetable protein, soy protein isolate, protein concentrate, textured vegetable protein, vegetable oil (simple, fully, or partially hydrogenated), plant sterols, or the emulsifier lecithin. Its many guises hint at its value to manufacturers.

The effort that has gone into creating the global soya market has indeed
been enormous. Today it is dominated by a handful of American trading companies. Three of them - Bunge, ADM and Cargill - control 80% of the European soya bean crushing industry. These three, together with allied companies, are also estimated to control up to 80% of European animal feed manufacturing. They dominate the US soya market, and also account for 60% of Brazil's soya exports.

You can just hear the ravening grind of cash machine driven ravening corporations as the dream up more despicable ways to fill our diet with processed food that in the long-term is against our health.

Friday, July 21, 2006

You have to ask yourself why!

Why on earth would you want to have a bicycle that you need to row?? - in the words of Eric Cartman "it just does not make sense!"

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Poo Jellyfish, poo

Scientist have noticed that a species of tiny jellyfish no larger than your thumb may be able to save the planet from global warming.

They feast on phytoplankton, which are booming in our oceans due to the increase in the temperature. The phytoplankton use the Co2 to photosynthesise, taking it out of the atmosphere and then, once eaten, the CO2 gets deposited on the ocean floor in the jellyfish's poo.
Woods Hole biologists Laurence Madin and Patricia Kremer of the University of Connecticut and colleagues found that one swarm of these tiny jellyfish covered almost 40,000 square miles of the sea surface and consumed almost 74% percent of
phytoplankton every day, removing it from the ocean and preventing it from evaporating back into the atmosphere. Instead, it was contained in their fecal pellets, which sank down into deep water at the rate of up to 4,000 tons of carbon a day.
Let's just hope those little buggers multiply and scoff to their hearts content

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Russian Researchers Develop Tomato Vaccine Against HIV and Hepatitis - NEWS - MOSNEWS.COM

soon people could be gaining the benefits of promising experiments of growing HIV vaccines in tomatoes. This offers the hope of cheap, sustainable vaccines for the poorest of countries

Rurik Salyaev at the Siberian Institute of Plant Physiology and Biochemistry in Irkutsk, Russia, and his colleagues used the soil bacterium
Agrobacterium tumefaciens to shuttle a synthetic combination of HIV and HBV DNA fragments into
tomato plants. These include fragments of genes for various HIV proteins and the gene for an HBV protein called HBV surface antigen.

The tomato plants then manufacture the proteins and, like the oral polio vaccine, when the tomatoes are eaten, these proteins prompt the body to create antibodies against the viruses