10 MustHave Tesla Model 3 Accessories

Source: Charge Forward When you get a new Tesla Model 3, it comes fairly well equipped, but it still needs a few accessories – some like any other cars and others specifically for the Model 3.I purchased, or requested review units, for over 30 accessories to use with the Model 3 and selected the best ones for this post after trying them on my own Model 3. more…The post 10 Must-Have Tesla Model 3 Accessories appeared first on Electrek.

See How Porsche Virtually Tests Taycan Cross Turismo On Nurburgring

first_imgIn turn, this results in an expedited development process for the Taycan Cross Turismo, allowing the Stuttgart based carmaker to bring the vehicle to the public faster than ever. And overall, according to Porsche, the virtual prototypes have already completed more than ten million digital kilometers in total.“Digitalisation is giving us the chance to become even more dynamic and sporty,” states Dr. Joachim Deisinger, Head of Virtual Vehicles at Porsche. Dr. Robert Meier, the Taycan Complete Vehicle Project Manager, adds: “As well as being able to simulate individual assemblies and functions, we can also fine-tune the vehicle as a whole at a much earlier stage and in a more precise way. One thing remains clear: every Porsche contains the soul of a sports car, even if it features an electric drive and was developed digitally.”.embed-container { position: relative; padding-bottom: 56.25%; height: 0; overflow: hidden; max-width: 100%; } .embed-container iframe, .embed-container object, .embed-container embed { position: absolute; top: 0; left: 0; width: 100%; height: 100%; }For Porsche, digitalization allows them to cut cost, use less time-consuming tests and in the end, bring the vehicles to showrooms faster. And with the general public really interested in both the Taycan and the Taycan Cross Turismo, shaving off a few months in the development process ultimately means a lot when the broader picture is taken into account. While Porsche is clearly a legacy carmaker, the German company is seemingly embracing the digitalization and the electric vehicle revolution with open arms in every area.Right now, Porsche is set to invest more than 6 billion euros in electric mobility by 2022. This poses more than a double of their previously planned expenditure of around 3 billion euros. And out of the additional 3 billion euros, around 500 million are to be spent in order to develop the models and versions of the Porsche Taycan range. Furthermore, Porsche is slated to invest more than 1 billion euros in the hybridization and electrification of their current product range. Additionally, the German carmaker will invest hundreds of millions into the expansion of their production sites, with more than 700 million euros set for the advancements in new technologies, smart mobility, and the charging infrastructure.Source: Porsche AG Porsche Taycan Head Discusses Car’s Virtues: Cooling, Range, Charging Cutaway Of Audi e-tron GT + Comparison With Porsche Taycan Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on December 8, 2018Categories Electric Vehicle News Watch As Porsche Taycan Brings Fake Exhaust To The Nurburgring The Porsche Supervisory Board approved series production of the Taycan Cross Turismo on 18 October, and now development is being kicked up a notch.The Taycan Cross Turismo is slated to be Porsche’s second battery-powered vehicle in the Taycan product range. Set to launch at the end of 2019, the Taycan is one of the most highly expected vehicles to become available next year. However, the short time frame and the overall overwhelming demand, mean that Porsche’s engineers need to use the most cutting-edge digital development methods, employing something known as virtual prototypes. In a nutshell, these virtual prototypes allow Porsche to test these components even before actual real-life prototypes have been built.More about the Porsche Taycan Source: Electric Vehicle Newslast_img read more

LG Chem sues SK Innovation over allegedly stealing electric car battery trade

first_imgLG Chem, one of the top battery suppliers for electric vehicles, filed federal lawsuits against SK Innovation (SKI), another top battery supplier for electric vehicles, over allegedly stealing trade secrets. more…Subscribe to Electrek on YouTube for exclusive videos and subscribe to the podcast.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N8COKnXNH-EThe post LG Chem sues SK Innovation over allegedly stealing electric car battery trade secrets appeared first on Electrek. Source: Charge Forwardlast_img

BorgWarner unveils new onboard battery charger

first_imgSource: Electric Vehicles Magazine Automotive parts supplier BorgWarner has released a silicon carbide onboard battery charger that is compatible with 400, 600 and 800 V systems. It accepts AC inputs with 7.4 kW, 11 kW, and 22 kW power ratings. Optional DC-to-DC converter rating integration from 2.3 kW to 3.6 kW is available. “Our technical center is dedicated to designing onboard battery chargers that are uncompromisingly suitable for the global electric and hybrid vehicle markets,” said BorgWarner President Joel Wiegert. “Our latest offering with its silicon carbide technology provides maximum power conversion efficiency, thus saving energy and delivering an extended range.” Source: BorgWarnerlast_img read more

ECT for Dementia and the Dangers of the BPSD Mindset

first_imgby, Dr. Al Power, ChangingAging ContributorTweetShare278ShareEmail278 SharesIt is hard to believe that my first blog post on this subject was 8 years ago, colorfully titled ECT for AD and LBD? WTF. In that post, I criticized researchers for giving electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) to people living with dementia who were exhibiting “severe agitation or aggression.” This topic has jumped back into the limelight recently with the announcement of a new $11.8 million NIA grant—to test ECT on a total of 200 people living with Alzheimer’s disease who have been referred to five geri-psych inpatient centers, including those affiliated with Harvard, Mayo Clinic, and Emory University.I guess it’s time to update that post.In recent decades, electroconvulsive therapy has been used mainly for the treatment of severe depression, and has been found to be helpful in many cases where one’s life is truly endangered by the condition. The technique has greatly improved since the One Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest days: electrode leads are applied to only one brain hemisphere to minimize cognitive changes, and both a general anesthetic and muscle relaxant are used to confine the induced seizure to the brain. In my former geriatrics practice, a few of my patients with very severe depression were treated with this approach over the years (none of them had significant dementia at the time of treatment and all received fewer than a half dozen treatments).Afterward, they showed modest improvement in their mood, but they also showed some lasting cognitive changes, contradicting the claims of some that there are “no” cognitive side effects to ECT.Now once again, a large study will apply this treatment to people living with dementia. Although I am not privy to all the methodology in the proposed study, the following remarks should fall close enough to the actual design to support my concerns.Let’s start with the ethical problems. The people who are transferred to such inpatient centers are invariably moved there at someone else’s direction. At this point in the lives of people with Alzheimer‘s disease, a multitude of day-to-day decisions have already been—rightly or wrongly—assumed by family members or other representatives. While advanced directive protocols are necessary in cases of decreased capacity, they were created to protect the person and respect her wishes. This leads one to wonder how such an invasive procedure as ECT, employed without the individual’s consent, has come to be construed as an example of “protection” of that person’s health, well-being, and previously stated wishes.My recent foray into formal research has taught me that even the simple collection of anonymous data about, for example, antipsychotic use needs to have ethics committee approval. One wonders how surrogate consent to use ECT (usually given a dozen or more times in these studies) ever passed an ethics board.Actually, one doesn’t wonder. This study is a perfect example of what happens when an overly medicalized view that sees all distress as “behavioral and psychological symptoms of dementia” (or “BPSD”) tries to find “solutions.” My experience and the work of many others has shown that most distress is the result of other underlying factors—relational, environmental, unmet needs, etc.—and that while dementia may affect one’s communication or coping skills, it is rarely the root cause of their distress. With any other disease process, the logical approach would be to address the root cause(s), not simply treat the individual with pills or shocks.But our BPSD view causes us to medicalize and pathologize the expressions of people living with dementia; in fact, we hold them to a higher emotional standard than we would ourselves. We get angry, sad, frustrated or anxious, but people with dementia have “behaviors.” We go for a walk, do our “steps,” or get bored and leave, but people with dementia “wander” or ”exit-seek.” We get restless when forced to follow other’s rhythms and schedules, but people with dementia “sundown.” We go to Costco and shop in bulk, but people with dementia “hoard.” And we don’t like being locked up, bossed around, or touched by strangers, but people with dementia get “agitated” and aggressive.” If people are upset because they are being undressed by strangers, are locked inside a living area, have no meaningful engagement in their days, or are simply expressing the range of emotions that we all display at times, how does ECT improve that?These issues also raise the larger question of how the human rights of people living with dementia are potentially being trampled by such a procedure. A 2018 judge’s decision to allow a Massachusetts school to use ECT for students with severe learning disabilities was harshly condemned by human rights advocates, showing that the rights of those with other disabilities continue to be advanced far ahead of those living with dementia. Viewed from this lens, one could say that using sedating medications or ECT violates one of our most basic human rights in any care environment—the right to have one’s concerns heard and understood, and necessary accommodations made. In fact, this is a central tenet of resident rights regulations throughout aged care.On the efficacy side, having read and extensively critiqued all of the antipsychotic studies over the years, I can predict that this study will follow most of the same flawed premises:It will view the distress as an internal “symptom,” ignoring everything else surrounding the person.It will measure its primary outcomes via decreased scores on reductionistic, deficit-based scales of “agitation” rather than looking for positive outcomes, such as measures of well-being or improved engagement.It will minimize the reporting of the side effects of the treatment, or paint them as an acceptable tradeoff to obtain a sense of emotional calm (more on this later). Most important, it is designed to compare ECT against “usual care,” meaning that no innovative approaches to improving people’s well-being or transforming the care environment will be applied—in effect, it will be like testing the effect of Bacardi 151 rum on relieving extreme thirst, without trying to offer water.On the safety side, a lot has been said about how much safer and well-tolerated ECT has become in recent years. However, people with severe depression have brains that are quite structurally intact. How does that degree of safety translate to the people with “moderate to severe Alzheimer’s disease” who will be treated in this study, in whom there has been extensive neuronal damage, particularly to memory centers that are susceptible to the effects of repeated ECT? In 2016, citing the potential for severe side effects, the FDA moved to enact new restrictions on the use of ECT in depression, including holding a detailed risk-benefit discussion with each patient .Next, let’s look at patient selection. Who is referring the people to the geri-psych units that will be enrolled? Usually it is nursing homes, and if so, what is their current knowledge of innovative, compassionate support for people living with dementia? Are they high-performing homes who are only referring people with truly refractory episodes of distress? Or are they homes who are poorly educated and equipped to offer more individualized approaches? Do they have consistent staffing assignments, or are they rotating people regularly who provide personal care (there is much evidence that such rotation is a major causative factor for distress and resistance)? Are many antipsychotic drugs being used concomitantly with the ECT? And does the study also include community-based referrals from overwhelmed family members who have not been taught how to best support their loved ones, or who have inadequate resources to do so?My guess is that they will take their referrals as per their usual “agitation” protocols, and will not try to delve deeply into these factors. Here is why that is critically important: Dr. Angela Norman and her team from the Arkansas Health Care Foundation have launched a large initiative to employ the Well-Being Approach to Distress that I teach in their state’s long- term care communities. After an initial, highly successful pilot with four homes, Dr. Norman brought the approach to the 25 highest-prescribing homes in Arkansas. As of this writing, those homes have cut their antipsychotic use by an average of 49% in only 6 months. Furthermore, Dr. Norman’s team has been mentoring a group of nearly 100 Arkansas nursing homes with this approach. Over the same period, they have significantly reduced the number of people transferred to hospitals and geri-psych units from those homes. Consider the implications of this: These people whose well-being has been improved, and who have been kept off of drugs and out of inpatient treatment in Arkansas are the same kinds of people to whom the NIA study will be applying multiple courses of ECT in Michigan, Minnesota, New York, Massachusetts, and Georgia. This suggests that many, if not most of the study subjects will be getting an invasive, potentially harmful treatment that would have been unnecessary if they lived in a place that offered more innovative approaches.Unfortunately, my own past searches for research grants have found that the NIA rarely funds the kind of work that’s being done in Arkansas. I can only wonder what my late friend and mentor, Dr. T. Franklin Williams (who directed the NIA from 1983-1991) would say of his former organization funding an ECT study such as this. Having had many discussions on dementia with Frank and his wife Carter over the years, I think I know.Let’s wrap up by getting back to the comment above about “acceptable side effects” to produce calm—we’ve also been down that road with antipsychotic drugs. While I have not yet heard this particular research team say it, there is a common attitude around such interventions that you probably have heard: “Even if there are lasting cognitive effects (from ECT, or antipsychotics), the person is suffering; and having her shift to a more advanced stage where she is less distressed could actually be a blessing.” I have heard this said many times from people who truly feel they are being compassionate—I have surely thought it myself in the distant past. But this is a dangerous way to think.I’ve discussed some of the many external factors that can serve as a root cause of distress, and ways in which those underlying factors can be successfully addressed without drugs or ECT. So, is a decrease in cognitive function really an acceptable tradeoff? How compassionate is it to render a person no longer capable of expressing those human emotions and unmet needs?Kate Swaffer, who has lived with a diagnosis of dementia for over a decade, told a 2018 Australian parliamentary advisory group, “Future generations are going to look back at the way we have mistreated our Elders in aged care . . .and will hang their heads in shame at the way we as ‘civilized society’ have treated them.”I believe dementia is the greatest shame of modern medicine; not because there have been no significant advances in treatment, but because—from restraints, to locked units, to antipsychotics, to ECT—we have lost our recognition of the humanity of those living with the diagnosis. And there are few signs that we are making much headway in this regard.I am left to the same conclusion I reached in my 2011 post: ECT for dementia still sounds to me like the “21 st Century Lobotomy.”Related PostsECT for AD and DLB? WTF…The above title is a somewhat “colorized” summary of an email I got from Kim McRae. She has been aware of a growing use of ECT (electroconvulsive therapy) in people with dementia. I was surprised that I knew nothing about this, … Continue reading →ChangingAging Weekly Blog Roundup August 18-25Weekly Blog Roundup The Story Behind the Story Confusing Average Lifespan With Longevity ECT for AD and DLB? WTF… ‘Changing Minds’ Alzheimer’s Education Symposium This October in Colorado That’s Greek to Me! – The definition of a CCRC Get Excited For Maryland’s First Green House Project We Need Jon Stewart…7 Kinds of Therapy I Don’t Want When I’m Living With Alzheimer DiseasePeople living with dementia are stigmatized in multiple ways, one of which is treating the activities the rest of us do for pleasure as “therapies.” My view is that we need to ditch the word therapy, and provide activities that engage, activate and enhance life as an integral part of…TweetShare278ShareEmail278 SharesTags: agitation agression BPSD Dementia ect electroconvulsive therapy geri-psych NIHlast_img read more

Essential fats in diet may regulate protein secretion in muscles by altering

first_imgMay 15 2018A new study reveals that essential fats in the diet may play a role in regulating protein secretion in the muscles by changing the way genes associated with secretion act. The study is published ahead of print in Physiological Genomics.Alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) and linoleic acid (LA) are plant-based essential fats-;called polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA)-;that humans consume through diet. ALA is an omega-3 fatty acid; LA is an omega-6 fatty acid. Omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids have been shown to be beneficial to brain health and reduce the risk of inflammation and heart disease.Previous studies have shown that proteins secreted from the muscles (skeletal muscle secretome) help regulate signaling of metabolic activities such as muscle fiber formation and the function of insulin-producing beta cells in the pancreas. This prior research suggests that obesity and insulin resistance-;an inability of the body to properly respond to insulin-;changes the skeletal muscle secretome. A research team from the University of Guelph in Ontario, Canada, explored how regular consumption of essential fats regulates how genes use information (gene expression) associated with the skeletal muscle secretome.Related StoriesNanoparticles used to deliver CRISPR gene editing tools into the cellAEBP1 gene may play key role in the development and severity of liver diseaseDiet and nutrition influence microbiome in colonic mucosaThe researchers studied glucose levels and took samples from muscle and RNA-;a molecule chain that uses genetic information from DNA to produce proteins in the cells-;from four groups of rats: a lean group ate a normal diet (“lean”), an obese group ate food supplemented with ALA (“ALA”), an obese group ate food supplemented with LA (“LA”), and an obese control group ate a normal diet (“obese control”). After 12 weeks on the respective diets, both the ALA and LA groups had lower glucose levels and better glucose tolerance compared to the obese control group. These factors improved more in the ALA group than the LA one. In addition, the researchers found more than 135 genes that expressed differently-;based on diet-;among the four groups of animals, including genes that correspond with 15 secreted proteins. Expression in most of these proteins differed between the lean and obese groups.These results suggest that “LA and ALA may differentially regulate the skeletal muscle secretome,” the researchers explained, and that the addition of PUFA further alters gene expression. “Our findings concerning the relationship between obesity and the skeletal muscle secretome add valuable information to a relatively understudied area of investigation.”Source: http://www.the-aps.org/mm/hp/Audiences/Public-Press/2018/25.htmllast_img read more

Satellite captures glowing plants from space

first_imgSAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA—About 1% of the light that strikes plants is re-emitted as a faint, fluorescent glow—a measure of photosynthetic activity. Today, at a meeting of the American Geophysical Union here, scientists released a map of this glow (pictured, with data averaged from August to October of this year) as measured by the Orbiting Carbon Observatory-2. The NASA satellite launched in July with the goal of mapping the net amount of carbon in the atmosphere. But the fluorescence map, an unexpected secondary capability, provides a more direct measure of carbon fluxes: the amount mopped up by plants during photosynthesis or released during respiration. The findings will help scientists disentangle inputs and outputs in places like the Amazon rainforest, where there are both big emissions from deforestation and big sinks from photosynthesis. The map reveals that tropical rainforests near the equator are actively sucking up carbon, while the Corn Belt in the eastern United States, near the end of its growing season, is also a sink. Higher resolution fluorescence mapping could one day be used to help assess crop yields and how they respond to drought and heat in a changing climate.last_img read more

This ancient baby insect was a fearsome spider killer

first_imgSpiders have a reputation for being fearsome, freaky nightmare fuel, but some 100 million years ago, a baby insect existed that kept the arachnids up at night. A study published in Current Biology describes the discovery of fossilized lacewing larvae with specialized adaptations that made these infantile insects spider-killing machines. Scientists found several amber-encased predecessors to modern lacewings—long, thin flyers with veiny, gossamer wings—in the forests of northern Myanmar’s Hukawng Valley. The trove dates to the mid-Cretaceous period about 100 million years ago and contained both young and adult lacewings, but it was the juveniles that stood out. The larvae of Pedanoptera arachnophila (above right) were maggotlike in general body shape, but with incredibly long, gangly legs “so fine in structure that it would seem to be impossible for the legs to support the more massive body,” the authors write. These legs terminated with serrated claws that, although unique among known lacewing larva, are commonly seen in other insects that glide easily over spiderwebs. Combined with the knowledge that lacewing larvae are known to be active predators, a picture emerges of this tiny, ancient hunter: a larval lacewing with impossibly spindly legs silently grasping along a spider’s silken threads, closing in on its quarry before dealing its fatal blow with sharp pincer jaws. The adult lacewings found in the amber (above left) were no predatory slouches, either, with long legs, strong mandibles and an elongated necklike structure, but they were more likely generalized hunters, not spider specialists.last_img read more

Clean energy patent slump in US stirs concern

first_img Email Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe By Warren CornwallApr. 26, 2017 , 12:15 AM Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Even without environmental regulation, wind power is now one of the cheapest options for new power generation in many parts of the United States. Clean energy patent slump in U.S. stirs concerncenter_img A surge in innovation tied to low-carbon energy technologies is showing signs of tapering off in the United States, at a time when the Trump administration is targeting the field for cuts in government research spending.The number of patents issued in fields related to cutting carbon emissions climbed from 15,970 in 2009 to approximately 35,000 in 2014 and 2015, before slipping back slightly to about 32,000 in 2016, according to a new report issued today by the Washington, D.C.–based Brookings Institution.It’s too soon to know whether this short-term drop is part of a bigger trend, says Devashree Saha, the study’s lead author and an associate fellow at Brookings. But it could be compounded by a push from the new president to pare back spending on renewable energy research, she says. “That, I think, raises a lot of concerns as to what is going to be the future of cleantech innovation in the next few years.” Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Portland General Electric/Flickr (CC BY-ND 2.0) Patents can serve as a handy metric for innovation, because they track new inventions their creators think are economically valuable enough to patent. By that measure, the years from 2001 to 2009 were relatively staid for clean energy, as patents issued each year hovered around 15,000, according to the study. Saha and her fellow researchers counted patents related to a number of energy fields, including solar, wind, energy storage, energy efficiency, and nuclear power.Beginning in 2010, however, things took off, climbing steadily for 5 years. During that time, the growth in patents issued in clean tech fields outpaced patents overall, and also outpaced high-tech fields including pharmaceuticals, biotechnology and semiconductors, according to the report.One likely reason for the shift was an injection of federal research dollars, including an infusion to help recover from the 2008 recession, and Obama administration initiatives to boost research in renewable energy, says Jesse Jenkins, a researcher at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Energy Initiative in Cambridge.The federal recovery act pumped $3.3 billion into research and development at the Department of Energy (DOE), including a significant chunk for renewable energy–related work. The Obama administration also funded the Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E), the $290 million program to push “moonshot” energy technologies into commercialization. Research spending through the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy averaged $1 billion per year under Obama, $100 million more annually than under former President George W. Bush.But David Hart, an energy policy expert at George Mason University in Arlington, Virginia, cautions that other forces were probably crucial. It can take years for research spending to translate into patent applications, and for the patents to be issued. Hart suspects much of the credit for the patent boom lies with growth in private industry, spurred in part by government regulations to encourage more clean energy, such as tax credits and state-level renewable energy quotas. He also questions whether anything can be concluded from the downturn in clean energy patents in the last year.Saha, the study’s author, agrees that federal spending doesn’t explain all of the bump. In addition to growing corporate investment, in 2011 Congress also passed legislation to streamline the patent process, which could have resulted in more patents being issued, she notes.All three, however, agree the Trump administration could have an impact on the direction of such energy innovation. The president’s so-called “skinny” budget, for instance, would cut DOE’s energy-related research by 44% and eliminate ARPA-E. And Hart worries that some clean energy technologies, such as more efficient electrical grids and devices that can store intermittent solar and wind power, are still in an early stage where private investment alone won’t bring them to fruition. “They may have enough momentum on their own” to make it to market, he says. “But I think there is still an important role for the government.”last_img read more

People dont trust driverless cars Researchers are trying to change that

first_img If you think the car likes you, you think it’s going to try harder to do well, and that’s terribly worrisome. Related content Other experiments have also found that riders find talking cars comforting. In one, Wendy Ju, a mechanical engineer at Stanford University’s Center for Automotive Research in Palo Alto, California, put volunteers in a car with a visual barrier that prevented passengers from seeing the driver. The passengers were encouraged to pretend—and in some cases came to believe—that the car was driving itself.The car didn’t talk, but when asked by an experimenter to say “Hello,” it revved its engine. “I was surprised how much I trusted it,” one rider said afterward. “When it said ‘Hello,’ that one thing gave it enough personality for me to trust it.”Humanizing the car could even shape how a passenger might respond to an accident, a 2014 study concluded. Researchers led by Adam Waytz, a psychologist at Northwestern University in Chicago, Illinois, asked participants to sit in a simulated AV and take a short “ride” while being videotaped and having their heart rate monitored. Some were told that they were riding in a vehicle named Iris, and heard a female voice throughout the ride; others rode in a mute, nameless car. During the simulation, another car crashed into the AV. Iris’s passengers were less startled by the wreck—suggesting that they trusted the car because they had anthropomorphized it. People don’t trust driverless cars. Researchers are trying to change that By Matthew HutsonDec. 14, 2017 , 9:00 AM Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country An Intel study conducted earlier this year at its corporate campus in Chandler, Arizona, suggested that—as in the James ad—familiarity will ease some anxiety. Researchers recruited a diverse group of 10 volunteers and offered them a choreographed, 5-minute ride in an AV on a closed course. The ride was structured to resemble one offered by a ride-hailing service. Passengers used a phone app to summon and unlock the car. They sat in the back seat with an Intel employee, while a safety driver sat in the front. As the car stopped for pedestrians or took a detour, it occasionally announced its actions. The passengers were videotaped discussing their thoughts before, during, and after the ride.Like James, most of the volunteers were a bit apprehensive beforehand, Weast says. But they all turned “almost 180°” after the ride. One mother decided that the car was actually safer than one driven by a human and said AVs would allow her to reclaim the 4 to 6 hours a day she spends shuttling her kids around to school and practices. “The daily life sort of benefits became quickly obvious,” Weast says. “Participants probably wouldn’t have ever dreamed they’d say that before that ride.”The volunteers also offered some surprising reactions to one trust-building technology that AV-makers are testing: giving the vehicle a voice. Weast says passengers appreciated hearing the car say it was slowing for a pedestrian, because otherwise they might wonder what was happening. “What was funny, though, is that after hearing that a couple of times the passengers quickly transitioned to: ‘OK, OK, I get it. Stop talking to me,’” he says. “Which really was frankly amazing to us. In the span of a couple minutes, people got so comfortable that they quickly transitioned to, ‘I want to just sit back and relax or play with my phone.’” Some riders might welcome a say in how aggressively a driverless car, such as this one in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, navigates through traffic. Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Communication should go both ways, researchers believe. During the Intel test, some passengers mistakenly assumed the car could not only talk, but also hear. “People immediately wanted to start talking back to the car, like it was their digital assistant,” Weast says. Some riders might also want to use hand gestures to instruct it precisely where to pull over, he notes, which would require deploying chips capable of speech and gesture recognition.It is also possible that riders might come to trust a friendly, smooth-talking car too much. “If you think the car likes you, you think it’s going to try harder to do well, and that’s terribly worrisome,” Ju says. It could lead to unrealistic expectations, because even the safest AV won’t be risk-free.Researchers at Uber and elsewhere are testing other ways of allowing AVs to communicate with riders, including video screens, sounds, and even vibrating components that might indicate impending turns and stops. In one test, by carmaker Daimler, screens displayed “shadow” images: representations of the landmarks, traffic signals, and adjacent cars that the vehicle must navigate. A rider watching the screen “would very naturally feel that the car is sensing everything around,” says Alexander Mankowsky, a futurologist at Daimler in Stuttgart, Germany. Consumer distrust has become a catalyst, prompting researchers in industry and academia to launch a wide range of studies aimed at understanding how people perceive AVs—and what might persuade skeptics to change their views. Some are studying how those outside the vehicle, including pedestrians and nearby drivers, react to driverless vehicles. Others are focusing on how passengers interact with AVs, for instance by testing whether people are more likely to trust cars that talk or share visual information on screens. Bertram Malle, a psychologist at Brown University, predicts that “acceptability is going to depend on how people feel when they are riding in an AV.” The ad, from computer chip–maker Intel in Santa Clara, California, is aimed at overcoming what could be one of the biggest obstacles to the widespread adoption of autonomous vehicles (AVs): consumer distrust of the technology. Unnerved by the idea of not being in control—and by news of semi-AVs that have crashed, in one case killing the owner—many consumers are apprehensive. In a recent survey by AAA, for example, 78% of respondents said they were afraid to ride in an AV. In a poll by insurance giant AIG, 41% didn’t want to share the road with driverless cars. And, ironically, even as companies roll out more capable semi-AVs, the public is becoming less—not more—trusting of AVs, according to surveys over the past 2 years by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in Cambridge and marketing firm J.D. Power and Associates.Such numbers are a warning sign to firms hoping to sell millions of AVs, says Jack Weast, the chief systems architect of Intel’s autonomous driving group in Phoenix. “We could have the safest car in the world,” he says, “but if consumers don’t want to put their kids into it, then there’s no market.” Are we going too fast on driverless cars? Wendy Ju, Stanford University Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe FORD MOTOR COMPANY This October, television and web viewers were treated to an advertisement featuring basketball star LeBron James taking a ride in a driverless car. At first, James—known for his fearlessness on the court—peers in doubtfully at the vacant driver’s seat and declares: “Nope.” But after a short trip in the back seat, he has changed his tune. “Hey yo, I’m keepin’ this!” James exclaims to friends. To gauge how bystanders might react to autonomous vehicles, researchers are conducting “ghost driver” experiments in which a driver is hidden by a seat suit. Email To make riders more comfortable, some autonomous vehicles feature screens that show passengers what the vehicle is sensing. FORD MOTOR COMPANY JEFF SWENSEN/THE NEW YORK TIMES Overall, researchers are learning that riders “like to see what the car sees,” says Carol Reiley, a roboticist and co-founder of Drive.ai in Mountain View, California, which experiments with displays. And, “If you do a good job,” she notes, riders “get bored”—and don’t spend the trip nervous and on edge. The goal should be no surprises for the rider, Malle says. “Understanding why the vehicle is doing what it is doing will be a critical factor in trust and acceptance.”Giving riders a bit of control over the car’s behavior can also build trust. For example, a team led by Anca Dragan, a roboticist at the University of California (UC), Berkeley, devised an experiment in which potential AV riders were presented with common driving situations—such as passing another car—then asked to choose between two candidate AV behaviors, represented by illustrative videos of the car’s path. Based on the answers, a machine-learning algorithm diagnosed the user’s preferred driving style. Ultimately, the system learned to behave as the “rider” wanted.The idea, Dragan says, is to have “the car adapt to the person, rather than having the person adapt to the car.” Such customization might help address what Berkeley Dietvorst, a marketing researcher at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, calls “algorithm aversion”—people’s unwillingness to trust digital decision-making, even if it is better than their own. He’s found that offering even a nominal amount of control over an algorithm’s output increases its acceptance.Researchers are also studying ways to put people outside the AV—pedestrians and people in other cars—at ease. A team led by Ju, for instance, developed a relatively simple “ghost driver” system in which a driver of a conventional car dresses up as the driver’s seat, making it appear that the vehicle has no operator. Then, the researchers record the responses of bystanders. Among other things, the team has found that, at crosswalks, pedestrians like to have some acknowledgement from an AV that it has “seen” them. Without such cues, they will sometimes go out of their way to avoid the vehicle.What bearing does outsiders’ trust in AVs have on the technology’s adoption by consumers? “Not behaving like a jerk when you’re driving, that’s actually important to people,” Ju says. “Nobody wants to be the asshole driver, even if they’re not actually driving the car.” FORD MOTOR COMPANY After hearing about the ghost driver studies, John Shutko, a human factors researcher at Ford Motor Company in Detroit, Michigan, decided to expand the purview of his research, which had focused primarily on riders. That decision “kind of doubled or tripled our workload,” he recalls, “because now we’re not just focused on the drivers or customers of Ford products, but on how all of society will interact with our vehicles.”Shutko has taken the ghost driver protocol one step further. In collaboration with researchers at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University’s Transportation Institute in Blacksburg, he has dispatched a van with a hidden driver that is also equipped with a bar of lights at the top of the windshield. When the pseudo-AV reaches a crosswalk, the lights flash in different patterns in a bid to communicate with pedestrians.The researchers chose just three signals, simple and distinctive enough for observers to understand after two or three exposures. One indicates that the car is in autonomous mode, another that it’s preparing to yield, and the third signals it’s about to accelerate. So far, they’ve recorded 150 hours of video of pedestrians’ reactions, but haven’t fully analyzed them yet. Now, Shutko is planning simulations aimed at understanding whether people will become confused if dozens of AVs equipped with messaging lights converge at an intersection.What worries Shutko is the possibility that different automakers will use different signals, so he’s working with manufacturers and universities to set a standard. “My goal,” Shutko says, “is that a grandparent could see one of these vehicles, understand the lights, come home, explain to their grandchild, and feel comfortable with their grandchild walking to school with these vehicles running around.”How AVs are programed to handle difficult ethical dilemmas could also affect that comfort level. The most famous is the so-called “trolley problem,” named after a scenario in which a person can either passively allow a trolley to careen down a track and kill five workers or actively flip a switch so that it changes course and kills only one. In a stark AV analog, the car must decide whether to avoid killing five pedestrians by driving its passenger off a cliff. Should it save the many bystanders or the one rider?In one survey, most respondents thought that AVs should put a priority on saving the most lives, even if it meant endangering passengers—providing they weren’t the passengers. When it came to their own cars, people put passenger safety first, according to the survey, published last year in Science by a team led by Iyad Rahwan, a computer scientist at MIT. Such attitudes have raised a counterintuitive notion: To win consumer acceptance and save more lives in the end, manufacturers might have to field cars that are less utilitarian—programmed to save fewer lives—when faced with those rare trolley dilemmas.When asked about their top concerns about AVs, however, most people don’t mention trolley problems. And even telling people explicitly about the dilemma doesn’t necessarily enhance their fear of AVs or reduce their desire to buy one, Rahwan reported at a Psychology of Technology conference held last month at UC Berkeley.Still, researchers say media coverage of the trolley problem could shape public opinion. Last year, Mercedes-Benz faced public indignation after a company official told Car and Driver magazine, “If you know you can save at least one person, at least save that one. Save the one in the car.” The Daily Mail newspaper in the United Kingdom reprinted the quote under the headline: “Mercedes-Benz admits automated driverless cars would run over a CHILD rather than swerve and risk injuring the passengers inside.” The company quickly did damage control, but the episode is a reminder that “public outrage is a really difficult thing to predict,” says Azim Shariff, a psychologist at UC Irvine who co-authored the Science trolley paper. “If what happened with Mercedes is any indication, the public resistance to nonutilitarian cars could end up being a big deal.”Surveys show consumers have plenty of other concerns. They worry that AVs could be hacked, threatening both control of the vehicle and data privacy. And a steady stream of stories about AV accidents has fed concerns about safety. Last year alone, an Uber AV ran a red light in San Francisco, California, a Google AV bumped into a bus in Mountain View, and a semiautonomous Tesla that was on autopilot hit a truck and killed its driver in Florida.Such incidents suggest that companies need to be careful about raising unrealistic expectations for AV technology. Some observers, for example, fault Tesla for not making it clearer that their “advanced autopilot” system still required the driver to pay attention and be ready to take control. Studies have found that consumers tend to overestimate the amount of autonomy provided by the slew of assistive technologies that manufacturers are now adding to cars, such as sophisticated cruise controls that enable a car to automatically stay in lanes and adjust its speed depending on surrounding traffic. In one survey, people even suggested names for such semiautonomous cars: “Potential disaster car,” “Bad Science car,” and “Boy are you lazy.”Ultimately, to build trust in AVs, experts say companies will need to clearly communicate the technology’s strengths and weaknesses. “We have started to use the term ‘calibrated trust,’” Malle says. “You want people to trust the AV … with respect to the things it is actually good at, but not trust the AV with things it is not good at.” A key message, Mankowsky says, is that for all the potential benefits of the technology, consumers “should not believe in magic.”last_img read more

It could take 118 years for female computer scientists to match publishing

first_img Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Email It could take 118 years for female computer scientists to match publishing rates of male colleagues By Jeffrey BrainardJun. 21, 2019 , 11:00 AM Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe It could be well into the 21st century before female computer scientists annually publish as many research articles as their male counterparts, an analysis published today concludes. If current trends in publishing continue, women in biomedical research are likely to reach parity sooner, possibly by 2050. The study, which appears on the preprint service arXiv, used a large data set and statistical methods to estimate the portion of papers published by women in those fields, yielding a measure of progress in efforts to eliminate historical patterns of gender inequality. “Although gender balance is improving, progress is slower than we had hoped,” write Oren Etzioni and co-authors at the Allen Institute for Artificial Intelligence in Seattle, Washington.Using a tool called Semantic Scholar, developed by the institute, the researchers examined nearly 3 million journal and conference papers in computer science published between 1970 and 2018. They also analyzed more than 11 million biomedical papers that appeared during that period in the 1000 most-cited journals in the Medline database maintained by the U.S. National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland. Robert Neubecker Determining the gender of authors required estimation because some first names, such as “Taylor,” are used by people of all genders. The researchers ran the first name of each author through an online database, Gender API, which predicts the probability that a first name belongs to a man or woman based on known associations between first names and gender in various countries as shown by government data and social media profiles. The researchers applied those probabilities to calculate the share of all papers published each year by women. The analysis counted all authors equally, regardless of what order each was listed.The study’s conclusion—that publishing parity in computer science will be reached only around the year 2137, a few generations from now, and perhaps even later—is an extrapolation from past growth rates.“We hope that these findings will motivate others in the field to … consider ways to improve the status quo,” Etzioni and his colleagues write in their study.They also examined the extent of cross-gender collaborations in authorship of computer science articles, and found reason for pessimism: These collaborations are not increasing as quickly as the data indicate they could, given the growing number of women in the field, they said. “Although both men and women are more likely to collaborate with authors of their own gender, the degree of same-gender preference is declining among female authors but increasing among male authors,” the study found.The findings are consistent with those reached by a similar study published in 2018 in PLOS ONE, which examined many more fields of science, 115 in all. In the large majority—87—women comprised significantly fewer than 45% of authors, according to the analysis by Luke Holman and colleagues at the University of Melbourne in Australia.They found that changes in author gender ratios tended to be slowest in disciplines with large numbers of men, among them computer science and physics. A possible explanation, they said, was that such fields have biases that affect the relative publication rates of men and women.last_img read more

Rain is melting Greenlands ice even in winter raising fears about sea

first_imgStudy co-author Marco Tedesco of Columbia University studies a rushing meltwater stream within Greenland’s Russell Glacier in July 2018. Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Rain is melting Greenland’s ice, even in winter, raising fears about sea level rise Since melting on the surface of the ice sheet came to dominate in 2011, Greenland’s annual contribution to global sea level rise has doubled. Warming has driven this acceleration and, over the past 30 years or so, average air temperatures at the ice sheet warmed by as much as 1.8°C in summer, and up to 3°C in winter.To better understand the causes of this accelerating melt, climate scientists used more than 30 years of satellite data to pinpoint “melt events” when the amount of liquid water on the ice sheet suddenly increased. To detect these events, the satellites exploited liquid water’s unique ability to absorb and emit microwave radiation from the sun. Water emits 100 times more microwave radiation than snow, allowing the satellites to detect even slight increases.By combining the satellite data with local weather readings, the team could determine whether rain or other factors instigated melt events. The researchers identified 313 melt events caused by rain from 1979 to 2012. Over the study period, the melt caused by rainy weather doubled during summer, and tripled during winter, the team reports today in The Cryosphere.The weather patterns sending this moisture to Greenland are not new, says lead author Marilena Oltmanns of Germany’s GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research in Kiel. But because the background temperature is higher, more of this moisture is falling as rain rather than snow.The impacts of this rain on the ice sheet extend beyond the moment drops are falling, says study co-author Marco Tedesco of Columbia University. Rain in Greenland is typically delivered by warm, moisture-laden winds from the south. These clouds linger, trapping the warm air they rode in on like a blanket, driving increased melting for days after the rain subsides.The wintertime rain could have even more lasting consequences. Rain-induced melt in winter may quickly refreeze, but the rained-on snow forms a crusty layer that absorbs more sunlight than fresh powder. After decades of increasingly frequent winter rain, the snowpack contains so many of these layers that they accelerate melting when exposed to the sun in the summer, Tedesco says.The surface melting caused by rain could even be accelerating the flow of glaciers, increasing the quantity of ice they deliver into the sea, Oltmanns says. If further work shows meltwater seeping beneath the glaciers does speed their march to the sea, it could lead to even more ice loss than the rain itself, she says.Greenland holds enough ice to deliver 7 meters of sea level rise—enough to submerge much of lower Manhattan in New York City—but predicting how fast that rise occurs requires work like this, detailed the mechanisms behind the melt.“These systems have the potential to cause big changes,” Oltmanns says. “How little we understand about them is frightening.” Rising global temperatures are making Greenland feel a bit more like the United Kingdom—and that’s bad news for the ice sheet that covers the massive arctic island. Rain is becoming more frequent, melting ice and setting the stage for far more melt in the future, according to a new study. Even more disturbing, researchers say, is that raindrops are pockmarking areas of the ice sheet even in the dead of winter and that as the climate warms, those areas will expand.“This is what climate change looks like, it’s the ‘Atlantification’ of the Arctic,” says climate scientist Ruth Mottram of the Danish Meteorological Institute in Copenhagen, who was not involved in the study. “This paper identifies a really important mechanism and we need to figure out how it plays into our predictions of sea level rise.”Each year, the hot knife of climate change excises 270 billion tons of ice from Greenland’s more than 1.7-million-square-kilometer ice sheet. Between 1992 and 2011, all that lost ice raised global sea level roughly 7.5 millimeters. Roughly half of the ice loss in that period occurred at the ice sheet’s edge in the form of icebergs cleaving from glaciers and thundering into the sea. But in recent years, satellite monitoring has revealed that 70% of Greenland’s contributions to sea level rise has come from meltwater, not ice. Kevin Krajick/Earth Institute, Columbia University center_img Email By Alex FoxMar. 7, 2019 , 9:00 AM Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwelast_img read more

Moving DNA to a different part of the nucleus can change how

first_img Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe Researchers demonstrated that the technique worked by shifting several gene pairs from central locations (above right) to the edge of the nucleus (above left). They also used the technique to move stretches of DNA known as telomeres—the tips of chromosomes implicated in aging. When they moved the telomeres to the inner edge of the nucleus, the cell grew much more slowly, if at all. But when they put telomeres close to cajal bodies, aggregations of proteins and genetic material that process RNA, the cell perked up: It grew faster and divided sooner than usual. Thus, the researchers conclude, the positioning of the telomeres is very important to keeping a cell healthy and productive.Other researchers say they are impressed with the new CRISPR-GO technique. (GO stands for “genome organization.”) That’s because it opens up a whole new way of altering the organization of the genome, which could pave the way toward a better understanding how the nucleus works and possibly lead to finer control over gene activity to slow aging or prevent disease. Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country By Elizabeth PennisiOct. 11, 2018 , 11:00 AM Email H. Wang et al., Cell 10.1016 (2018) Though the 3 meters of DNA inside the nuclei of our cells looks like a jumbled pile of spaghetti, the genome is, in fact, pretty well organized. Now, scientists have discovered—using a modified version of the gene-editing tool CRISPR—that the location of DNA, not just the order of its base pairs, can make a critical difference in how certain parts of the genome work.The nucleus is dynamic, with everything—the chromosomes, the nucleolus, and so on—swirling around seemingly randomly. But in the past decade, researchers have realized that DNA on chromosomes inside can reposition itself in specific ways, ways that may alter the activity of the genes being moved. But, until now, they had no good way of proving that hypothesis.Enter CRISPR: Bioengineers have retooled the gene-editing technique to move specific stretches of DNA from one place to another inside the nucleus itself, they report today in Cell. First, they attach the DNA to a protein that, when prompted by the plant hormone abscisic acid, selectively links up with another protein found only in the target location. The second protein then “snags” the attached DNA, holding it fast in the desired spot. Removing the abscisic acid loosens the connection, freeing the DNA. Moving DNA to a different part of the nucleus can change how it workslast_img read more

Man charged with intent to cause grievous bodily harm granted bail

first_imgShareTweetSharePinJavid Alfred from Wall House, who was arrested and charged last week for shooting Akenton Mohammed at Fond Cole, has been granted a bail in the sum of EC$30,000. He was charged with intent to cause grievous bodily harm.Alfred appeared in court on Tuesday, 23rd April 2019 and as part of his bail conditions, was asked to report to police headquarters every Wednesday, between the hours of 7 am and 7 pm. The accused has also been ordered not to change his address in Wall House without informing the court and not to interfere with witnesses in the case.The trial is set for September 20th, 2019.last_img read more

HJHS Site Council members are sought

first_imgSeptember 12, 2017 Holbrook Junior High School officials are looking for parents and interested community members to serve on the HJHS Site Council. The role of the council is advise the school on such matters as student learning,Subscribe or log in to read the rest of this content. Bottom Ad HJHS Site Council members are soughtlast_img

Winslow Grand Prix set for this weekend

first_imgMay 1, 2018 By L. Parsons Thin Air Off-Road is hosting the first ever Winslow Grand Prix to be held this Saturday and Sunday, May 5 and 6. The event is expected to bring in 2,000 spectators andSubscribe or log in to read the rest of this content. Bottom Ad Winslow Grand Prix set for this weekendlast_img

India reduces tariff on US motorcycles by 50 Trump says it is

first_imgTrump said the United States, under his leadership, is a country that can no longer be fooled.“We’re not the foolish country that does so badly. You look at India, very good friend of mine, Prime Minister (Narendra) Modi, you take a look at what they’ve done, 100 per cent tax on a motorcycle. We charge them nothing,” Trump told CBS news in an interview Monday.Trump was referring to the import tariff on the Harley Davidson motorcycles, an issue that has been close to his heart and wants India to reduce it to zero. trump, donald trump, harley davidson, trump harley davidson, trump harley india, us india trade Trump wants India to reduce the import tariff on the Harley Davidson motorcycles to zero. (Source: Reuters)US President Donald Trump said that even though India has reduced its import tariff on American motorcycles from 100 per cent to 50 per cent, it is still too high and not acceptable to him. US House rejects Saudi weapons sales; Trump to veto Advertising Advertising 10 Comment(s) Unbowed, Trump intensifies attacks on four Democratic congresswomen Related News Hold the applause until Hafiz Saeed is convicted: US committee to Donald Trump “So, when Harley sends over there, they have 100 per cent tax. When they (India) send in — they make a tremendous number of motorcycles — when they send them in, no tax. I called him. I said it’s unacceptable,” Trump said, referring to his conversation with Prime Minister Modi.“He (Modi) reduced it by 50 per cent with one phone call. I said it’s still unacceptable because it’s 50 per cent versus nothing. It’s still unacceptable. And they’re working on it,” he said, indicating that the two countries are still in talks to resolve the issue of import tariffs on American motorcycles.“But if I didn’t, if we didn’t have the power of what we have, and if we weren’t the bank–well, if we weren’t the bank we wouldn’t even be talking about it because nobody would care. But we’re the bank that everybody wants to rob, and that’s what they’ve been doing for a long period of time. USD 800 billion we have in trade deficits with other countries. So you tell me who made those deals,” he said in response to a question. By PTI |Washington | Published: June 11, 2019 8:27:06 amlast_img read more

Pig disease spreading in Asia as nations struggle to stop it

first_img Advertising Thailand and other countries still free of infections have taken strong preventive actions, including banning importation of pork, sausages, ham, or bacon. Sorawit Taneeto, director-general of Thailand’s Department of Livestock Development, urged people to cooperate with soldiers at checkpoints in border provinces and quarantine areas. Airports are using more dogs like beagles to help in luggage inspections. Farmer Nguyen Van Hoa lamented that only three pigs had died from the fever but authorities culled 40 of his pigs. They were among 14,000 hogs buried in My Duc district in the past month. About 2.4 million Vietnamese households engage in small-scale pig farming, a large share of the 30 million hogs raised in an industry worth $18 billion, one of the world’s largest.In Cambodia, more than 2,400 pigs have died or were culled since April in an eastern province bordering Vietnam, FAO said.Still, Sem Oun, a 58-year-old farmer and father of two in Ta Prum, a village near the capital Phnom Penh, frets that the illness could spread from Vietnam.“I don’t have any other job and my income that provides for my entire family relies solely on these pigs. If they die because of swine flu then everybody in the family will die too,” he told The Associated Press. Swine fever toll in China may be twice as high as reported, industry insiders say As swine fever roils Asia, hogs are culled and dinner plans change More Explained Advertising With pork supplies dwindling as leading producer China and hard-hit Vietnam destroy huge numbers of hogs and tighten controls on shipments, prices have soared by up to 40% globally and caused shortages in other markets.“This is the largest animal disease outbreak in history,” said Dirk Pfieffer, a veterinary epidemiologist at the City University of Hong Kong. “We’ve never had anything like it.”In South Korea, where diets rely heavily on pork, there is concern an outbreak could hurt an industry with 6,300 farms raising more than 11 million pigs. African swine fever is harmless to people but fatal and highly contagious for pigs, with no known cure. Karnataka trust vote today: Speaker’s call on resignations, says SC, but gives rebel MLAs a shield Hong Kong authorities have killed 10,700 pigs in two outbreaks, including one triggered by an animal imported from the mainland that was found to be infected. Two dead pigs infected with a virus similar to those in mainland Chinese were found in Taiwan, the FAO says.Epidemic fighting efforts have gotten entangled in regional geopolitics.North Korea scaled back cooperation with South Korea after the collapse of a February summit between North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and President Donald Trump, hampering joint work on stemming the spread of the disease following an outbreak near North Korea’s border with China.South Korea’s agricultural ministry said that blood tests of pigs from some 340 farms near the border with the North were negative. Fences and traps have been installed near farms to protect hogs from being infected by wild boars that roam the inter-Korean border. The North’s official Rodong Sinmun newspaper said quarantine efforts were focused on disinfecting farms and transport vehicles, restricting visitors, and banning the distribution of food products containing pork. Its references to nationwide quarantine efforts suggest the disease may have spread beyond regions near China. Pig disease spreading in Asia as nations struggle to stop it A photo provided by Raymond Zhong of pigs in China. (Raymond Zhong via The New York Times) Asian nations are scrambling to contain highly contagious African swine fever, with Vietnam culling 2.6 million pigs and China reporting a million dead in an unprecedentedly huge epidemic some fear is out of control. Smaller outbreaks have been reported in Hong Kong, Taiwan, North Korea, Cambodia and Mongolia after cases were first reported in China’s northeast in August. The U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization reported in its weekly update on Thursday the infections had reached Laos. Advertising Since last August, 1 million pigs have been culled in China. It has reported 139 outbreaks in all but two of its 34 provinces, the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization says. The US Department of Agriculture forecasts China’s total hog herd will shrink by 18% this year to 350 million animals, the lowest since the 1980s. This year’s Chinese pork output might fall by up to 35%, according to Rabobank, a Dutch bank.Vietnam reported in mid-May that 1.2 million pigs, or about 5% of its total herds, had died or been destroyed. FAO said Thursday that the number has risen to 2.6 million, and Vietnam said military and police officers were mobilized to help contain the outbreak. Rabobank expects Vietnamese pork production to fall 10% this year from 2018. The mass culling in Vietnam could sink many farmers deeper into poverty, said Wantanee Kalpravidh, a regional coordinator of FAO’s Emergency Center for Transboundary Animal Disease.Last month, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc urged authorities to prevent the disease, which has spread to 58 of 63 provinces, from escalating into an epidemic. Vietnam’s farm ministry reports it has so far culled 8% of its 30 million pigs. In My Duc, a suburb of Hanoi, disinfecting lime powder has been scattered around empty pig farms and checkpoints set up to control shipments.“We have to prevent and fight this disease like fighting an enemy,” Phuc told Cabinet officials. After Masood Azhar blacklisting, more isolation for Pakistan Taking stock of monsoon rain Manipur: 18-year-old youth dies of swine flu in Imphal Best Of Express Virat Kohli won’t have a say in choosing new coach Post Comment(s) Related News By AP |Hanoi (vietnam) | Published: June 21, 2019 9:15:26 amlast_img read more

Pesticides used in food tobacco products place children and smokers in potential

first_img Source:https://sciencepod.net/ Reviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Oct 3 2018Pesticides used in food, tobacco and marijuana production are placing children and smokers in potential risk, a study has found.Farmers across the world use pesticides to keep bugs and weeds at bay during the growing process. However, this often means these potent chemicals find their way into our bodies and can build up over time. An analysis of data from the US suggests that children and smokers of tobacco are being exposed to the highest levels of pesticide residues.The dangers are highlighted in a report from Irish data science and analytics company Creme Global, which was commissioned by emerging biotech company Microbide, based in Dublin, Ireland. The findings are due to be presented at the Predict Conference in Dublin, on 2nd October 2018. “If new pesticides could be developed that biodegrade and reduce these exposures we could certainly expect a significant reduction in exposure levels,” suggests Giulia Vilone, who co-authored the Creme Global analysis.The findings come amid mounting concerns about some specific pesticides, particularly the weed-killer glyphosate and the insecticide chlorpyrifos.Despite the assurances of governmental safety agencies, many consumers remain greatly concerned about pesticide residues in their foods. The huge market for organic produce, even with its price premium, testifies to that concern.In August 2018, a US court ordered chemicals giant Monsanto to pay US$289 million in damages to a school groundskeeper who said his cancer was a result of using Roundup weedkiller, which contains glyphosate as its active ingredient. Monsanto now plans to appeal the verdict. Moreover, recent research found significant levels of glyphosate in many breakfast foods aimed at children.Also in August, a court ordered the US Environmental Protection Agency to ban the sale of the widely-used pesticide chlorpyrifos due to links with developmental disorders, including autism, and other medical concerns. This compound is already banned in the European Union.Concerns about chlorpyrifos are validated and increased by a recent study showing that low doses can interfere with brain development in frogs. Lead author Sara McClelland of Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, PA, USA, concluded the study shows that chlorpyrifos affects vertebrate brain development, even at low doses.The Creme Global analysis used models largely developed by the US Environmental Protection Agency and the chemical industry to estimate the exposure of people in the US to the most commonly used pesticides.Children at riskOne concern is that children are being exposed to around twice the level of the studied pesticides compared to adults. This is due to the fact that their food consumption per unit body weight is more than twice that of adults. On average, children eat similar quantities to the typical adult, though their bodyweight is significantly lower. This takes the dietary exposure of children up to the level found in adults who also smoke tobacco.The Creme Global analysis also suggests that tobacco smokers risk exposure to pesticide residues at about twice the level of non-smokers. This is due to chemicals entering the body through the smoke.Out of the ten chemicals analysed, the main exposure risk in children is to chlorpyrifos, a compound that is the focus of some of the most significant medical concerns.Pesticide levels in the foods were taken from the publicly available US Pesticide Data Program, while dietary habits were gleaned from the US National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. Focusing on five specific foods—tomatoes, apples, lettuce, strawberries and rice—the analysis covered about 15% of the total diet. The estimated exposures were far below regulatory limits, but Vilone and her colleague Iwona Hawryluk emphasise that overall exposure, including the remaining 85% of the diet, will be significantly higher than the totals found in the study.Complex cocktailThe presence of pesticide residues in food, tobacco and other consumer products is not disputed, and governmental regulatory agencies set limits that they deem to be acceptable. However, these limits generally treat each compound in isolation, when in reality we all take in a complex cocktail of residues.Related StoriesResearchers identify gene mutations linked to leukemia in children with Down’s syndromeDaily intake for phosphates in infants, children can exceed health guidance valuesRevolutionary gene replacement surgery restores vision in patients with retinal degenerationThe regulatory limits also tend to reflect typical levels of consumption, whereas some people consume specific products at levels well in excess of the average intake. “The lack of complete data makes understanding the full picture very difficult,” says Hawryluk, while highlighting some specific causes for concern.An animal study at the University on Toulouse in France, published in June 2018, highlights the significance of the residue mixture to which we are exposed. Professor Laurence Gamet-Payrastre and his colleagues exposed mice to a low dose “cocktail” of pesticide residues at levels chosen to model realistic human exposure. They observed troubling metabolic changes in the mice, including those promoting obesity, diabetes and abnormal sexual development. They claim their work is the first to observe such changes in response to a “common mixture of pesticides,” suggesting studying individual pesticides in isolation could lead to problems being missed.MarijuanaThe Microbide-commissioned body of work that Creme Global conducted also included an investigation of data and data-gaps on pesticide residues in marijuana, which raises some specific issues due to both its wide-scale recreational use and ever-increasing interest in and adoption of marijuana-derived products in healthcare applications. Previous studies demonstrate that the pesticide residues present in cannabis transfer directly into the mainstream smoke and ultimately into the smoker’s body via inhalation. The report includes sources suggesting that “pesticide residues present in marijuana are a particular danger”, however, Creme Global did not have enough data to run quantitative analysis to support this conclusion.In healthcare applications, marijuana products treat people already suffering from health problems, who are therefore more vulnerable to toxic chemicals. Recreational users, on the other hand, often smoke marijuana without any filters, meaning they have less protection from pesticide residues than with most tobacco cigarettes. Much of the marijuana crop comes from less regulated conditions than traditional crops.New concepts in agricultureThese study findings are in line with previous work in the field. “The analysis conducted by Creme Global is a continuation of the advancement in using modelling in combination with real-world pesticide residue and food consumption data to produce refined yet conservative exposure assessments,”says Jason Johnston, senior scientist at Bergeson & Campbell PC in Washington D.C., USA, who is a human health risk assessment specialist with extensive experience in pesticide regulatory issues. “Such modelling is essential to improving our understanding of the relative sources of potential pesticide exposures in children and adults.”The Creme Global analysis comes amid increasing scientific attention focused on the risks of pesticide residues in foods, and exposure to pesticides during their application. In a wide-ranging review entitled “Pesticides, the environment and food safety,” Fernando Carvalho of the University of Lisbon, Portugal,emphasises the problems with current practice. “Future increase in food production must go along with the production of food with better quality and with less toxic contaminants,” he concludes.In a similar vein, Polyxeni Nicolopoulou-Stamati of the University of Athens, Greece, with co-authors, draws attention to research emphasizing that the regulatory “safe limits” of pesticides “may underestimate the real health risk as in the case of simultaneous exposure to two or more chemical substances, which occurs in real-life conditions and may have synergistic effects.” The authors add that “pesticides residues have also been detected in human breast milk samples, and there are concerns about prenatal exposure and health effects in children.” As the authors conclude, it is clear that there is an urgent need for a “new concept” in agriculture “based on a drastic reduction in the application of chemical pesticides.”​last_img read more