Wednesday, December 31, 2014

12/30/2014 -- Iceland's Bardarbunga volcanic eruption covers 35sq miles in lava

Dutchsinse | Dec 30, 2014

The ongoing large volcanic eruption at Bardarbunga Holuhran fissure, has now covered over 35 square miles in fresh lava.

(had to image stabilize this video due to hand camera shake from the person holding the camera inside the helicopter - as it is not an outside mounted cam )

This newest flyover (from December 24, 2014) shows the rift as still being majorly active.

Large volumes of lava are being forced to the surface via a split which occurred on the flank of the Bardarbunga volcanic complex.

The fissure has spread over the past few months.

The reason the crack at the surface has spread, is due to the movement of the magma chamber deep below. Also, the entire area is confirmed to have SUBSIDED (collapsed) by over 120feet. As the magma chamber is moving it is also collapsing due to loss of magma in the chamber below.

This subsidence could reach a critical mass, in which case the ground above will collapse below into the chamber (depending on the depth of the magma chamber below , this could be quite an issue in the future).

More information here , as well as multiple videos of the caldera:

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

How The Elite Stay In Power

We Are Change | Dec 30, 2014

In this video we break down in simple terms a very complex game that is happening behind the scenes that many do not notice. A complex game played by the very few against everyone else.

Monday, December 29, 2014

French Alps hit by massive snowfall, thousands of cars stranded (PHOTOS)

A car is stuck in the snow on December 27, 2014
on the road to Les Saisies ski resort in Savoie,
central-eastern France. (AFP Photo / Jean-Pierre Clatot)
RT | Dec 28, 2014

Massive snowfall, aggravated by strong winds and ice in the French Alps, has trapped thousands of holidaymakers, with up to 15,000 people forced to spend Saturday night in emergency accommodation centers in the Savoie region in southeastern France.

Conditions remained difficult on Sunday, a spokesman for the Savoie prefecture said. Authorities set up shelters in a dozen towns for stranded tourists in the area.

The chaos on Saturday left nearly 2,000 passengers stranded at Chambery airport in southeastern France. A spokesman for the Savoy region, which comprises roughly the territory of the Western Alps between Lake Geneva in the north and Dauphiné in the south, said: "We have not estimated the number of people who spent the [Saturday] night in their cars."

According to the prefecture, a number of travelers were taken care of in emergency shelters that became almost 100 percent full. "There were 83 shelters open," Transport Minister Alain Vidal said on Sunday on Europe 1.

Snow fall as vehicles move bumper-to-bumper along the motorway near Albertville, on December 27, 2014 as they make their way into the Tarentaise valley in the heart of the French Alps, home to many of the famous French ski resorts. (AFP Photo / Jean-Pierre Clatot)
Neighboring departments, Hautes-Alpes and Haute-Savoie, also opened several hundred beds in Gap, Briançon, Annecy and Cluses under emergency accommodation plans over Saturday and Sunday nights, Le Dauphiné Libéré reported.

Early Saturday morning, the traffic along the Tarentaise Valley, a key path into a number of popular resorts, was disrupted.

People walk at the Les Saisies ski resort in Savoie, central-eastern France, as snow falls on December 27, 2014. (AFP Photo / Jean-Pierre Clatot)
Thousands of cars were blocked because of the terrible weather. "We just made 130 km in 10 hours," Kevin Clavel told told Le Dauphiné Libéré, as he was stuck in his vehicle with four other passengers on A410 highway between Albertville and Chambery.

Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve and Secretary of State for Transport Alain Vidal praised "the coolness and sense of responsibility" of drivers, asking all those, who still can, to postpone their trips and to exercise "the utmost caution."

People put snow chains on their tires as snow falls on December 27, 2014 on the road to the Les Saisies ski resort in Savoie, central-eastern France. (AFP Photo / Jean-Pierre Clatot)

"Getting to the ski stations is still pretty tricky and snow chains are mandatory. The advice is that all those who can should delay their journey," the Transport Ministry also said in a statement.

Due to heavy snow and significant wind gusts, 19 departments were placed on the country's second-highest "orange alert" in northeast France and the Northern Alps on Saturday.

In northern France, wind gusting at nearly 160 km/h led to the closure of the port of Calais, interrupting ferries to England, and traffic restrictions on the A16 motorway along the coast. In Ile-de-France, the gardens of the Château de Versailles also had to be closed to the public because of the high wind, Le Monde reported.

A man uses a snow plow to clean the road as vehicles drive past on December 27, 2014 on the road to the Les Saisies ski resort in Savoie, central-eastern France. (AFP Photo / Jean-Pierre Clatot)
Heavy snow and ice caused the greatest disruption in the east of the country. At midday on Saturday, a 27-year-old man was found dead in his car after his vehicle slid into a gorge in the Belledonne mountain range in the Isère region. The accident was "probably due to snow," the police said. The car did not have snow tires, Le Figaro reported. A female passenger in the car was slightly wounded and taken to hospital in Grenoble.

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Sleepy Hollow: Unsolved mystery of slumbering village (RT Documentary)

RT | Dec 28, 2014 

They call it Sleepy Hollow. A small village in Kazakhstan (see map here) which has succumbed to a mysterious ailment – its dwellers keep falling asleep for no apparent reason. The indiscriminate illness has no cure. Episodes begin without warning, and those affected never know if they will wake up again. Some blame ghosts, others the closed uranium mines located nearby. But despite multiple attempts by medics and scientists to solve the riddle, the causes and consequences of the disease remain unknown. Now the RTD team goes to Kalachi village to undertake its own investigation.

Saturday, December 27, 2014

6 months of Earth in 6 mins: Astronaut shares ISS voyage in stunning time-lapse video

Screenshot from youtube video
by European Space Agency, ESA
RT | Dec 26, 2014 

A German astronaut has made a Christmas gift for all space lovers by combining thousands of photos he took during his ISS mission into one 4K-quality video. The six-minute clip captures the drama and beauty of planet Earth viewed from orbit.

European Space Agency (ESA) astronaut and social media celebrity Alexander Gerst returned from a six-month mission on the International Space Station, where among his other duties he took 12,500 photos of Earth and space.

The photos included images of the Milky Way, the auroras, lightning, cities at night, and twinkling lights following the path of the river Nile in Egypt.

Some of the video action highlights include a robotic space arm extending to grab hold of a Cygnus spacecraft (1:35) and then releasing its capture for its homeward journey at 4:50. The video wraps up with one last incredible aurora – one of the many the astronaut observed.

Read more..

Quantum Physics and Romanesque Art - Lothar Schäfer, Ph.D.

scienceandnonduality | Dec 26, 2014

Deep Truths Are Eternal. They constantly return and engage the Human Mind. The discovery of Quantum Physics that there is an invisible part of the world, which doesn't consist of things, but of non-material forms, is such a truth. We find it, for example, in the work of the European Romanesque Artists, between 1000 – 1120 CE. the artists at that time believed that the basis of reality is an invisible mystery, and they wanted to reveal that mystery in their art. In this lecture the parallels between the world view of Quantum Physics and that of the Romanesque Artists will be described, which suggest that our mind is connected with a Cosmic Mind, which expresses its principles as thoughts in our mind and as material structures in the external world.

Lothar Schäfer is Distinguished Professor (emeritus) of Physical Chemistry at the University of Arkansas. His research in physical chemistry, electron diffraction, applied quantum chemistry, and computational chemistry led to developing the first real-time gas electron diffraction instrument in which data is recorded online, enabling the first pulsed-beam, timeresolved studies of laser-excited molecules, and to performing the first quantum chemical geometry determinations of peptide molecules, predicting structural trends in proteins a decade before experimental observation. Author of Infinite Potential and In Search of Divine Reality.

Poverty and Fear Still Rankle, Ten Years After the Tsunami

Common Dreams | Dec 26, 2014 | Amantha Perera, Inter Press Service

Men walk past destroyed buildings in the
Hambantota town in southern Sri Lanka.
Reconstruction in this town subsequently
moved at a rapid pace.

(Photo: Amantha Perera/IPS)
It took just 30 minutes for the killer waves to leave 350,000 dead and half a million displaced. Less than one hour for 100,000 houses to be destroyed and 200,000 people to be stripped of their livelihoods.

For many thousands of people in South Asia, the Christmas holidays will always double as a memorial for those who suffered tragic losses during the 2004 tsunami, which rushed ashore on Dec. 26 leaving a trail of tears in its wake.

The island nation of Sri Lanka was one of the worst hit, with three percent of its population affected and five percent of its gross domestic product (GDP) lost in damages.

According to the Disaster Management Center (DMC), over a million people, mainly poor families from the coastal areas, had to be evacuated.

The Northern and Eastern provinces – already struggling in the grip of the protracted civil conflict that at the time was showing no signs of abating – bore the lion’s share of the destruction.

Weary from years of war, the population caught up in the fighting between government forces and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) were battered further by the waves: according to government data, 60 percent of the tsunami’s impact was concentrated on the northern and eastern coasts.

Read more..

Friday, December 26, 2014

Russia battles to contain Black Sea oil spill

Phys | Dec 25, 2014

Russian Emergency Ministry personnel
clean a section of the Black Sea
shore in Tuzla Spit November 13, 2007
A Russian Black Sea city declared a state of emergency Thursday after a burst pipeline spewed oil into the landlocked water body, with stormy weather hampering cleanup efforts.

The pipeline near the city of Tuapse burst late Tuesday, according to ChernomorTransneft, a subsidiary of Russia's main oil transport company Transneft.

"The wall of the pipeline broke due to... a landslide," the company said in a statement, adding that the rupture caused 8.4 cubic metres to leak out into the Tuapse river, which empties into the Black Sea.

Environmentalists warned however that the volume of the spill could be nearly 100 times greater than claimed by Transneft.

The oil transport company said the damaged section of the pipeline—about nine kilometres (five miles) from the Black Sea coast—was under construction by a subsidiary of oil giant Rosneft and was not yet in use by Transneft.

Rosneft also operates a major refinery in Tuapse.

Russia's sea and river transport agency said a cleanup mission was launched on Wednesday afternoon, though precluded the use of boats.

By Thursday, the declared a state of emergency in Tuapse and more than 300 workers were at the scene, according to the Krasnodar regional government website.

"There is a state of emergency for Tuapse city," a statement on the Krasnodar regional government website said. "Work is complicated by a storm, with waves two to three metres (up to 10 feet) high," it said.

World Wildlife Fund said Thursday that the spill already polluted 15 kilometres of the Black Sea shore, and accused Rosneft and Transneft of failing to act quickly and understating the real extent of the damage.

"According to WWF's information regarding the surface area and characteristics of the spill, the volume of the spill could be 500 to 700 tonnes (nearly 800 cubic metres)," WWF said Thursday.

The organisation said the consequences could have been avoided if the energy company alerted local authorities about the accident immediately instead of delaying its response for many hours.

Tuapse borders the resort city of Sochi, where Russia hosted the Winter Olympic Games in February.

‘Strip of ruins’: Witness to 2004 Indian ocean tsunami & aftermath

An aerial shot taken from a helicopter shows debris of
houses destroyed by tsunamis in the Galle district in the
southwestern coast of Sri Lanka,
27 December 2004.(AFP Photo / Jimin LAI)
RT | Dec 26, 2014

The scenes after the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami presented a “surrealistic picture” of ruins alone the devastated seashore, recalls a witness to perhaps the biggest natural catastrophe of the 21st century, 10 years ago today.

“It was a surealistic picture. We saw an entire strip of ruins along the seashore. We had an impression that we are moving along a dump of construction waste. This dump stretched out for dozens of kilometers,” Sam Klebanov, a Russian film industry professional, told RT.

Sam Klebanov, a Russian film industry professional (Photo by Sam Klebanov)
Klebanov found himself in the epicenter of one of the biggest disasters when he arrived in Sri Lanka on December 26. However, he didn’t evacuate, but decided to organize help for those affected by tsunami.

Aftermath of 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami ((Photo by Sam Klebanov)
At first, he and his friends bought water and necessary aid at their own expense, and then they managed to raise about $55,000 via the internet.

“Nobody knew if it was safe for us [to travel] along the devastated areas. We heard that the first humanitarian convoys didn’t reach their destinations and were robbed on their way,” he said.

Klebanov asked British High Commission in Colombo, the capital of Sri Lanka, for security assistance. They were escorted by four British servicemen. However, during their mission no one attacked them or their trucks.

The convoy made it some 120km along the devastated coast. Klebanov said they saw only one official aid station for those who survived the tsunami, adding that neither UN, nor Red Cross were working in the first days after the disaster.

Aftermath of 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami (Photo by Sam Klebanov)
“People were burning the tires. They thought that by this they may scare away the infections. Everything was in smoke, in the darkness we saw lost figures of people on the ruins,” recalls Klebanov.

He spent about a month in the devastated areas and managed to help dozens of people who lost everything because of disaster, the region’s most powerful in 40 years.

Aftermath of 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami (Photo by Sam Klebanov)

“People were burning the tires. They thought that by this they may scare away the infections. Everything was in smoke, in the darkness we saw lost figures of people on the ruins,” recalls Klebanov.

He spent about a month in the devastated areas and managed to help dozens of people who lost everything because of disaster, the region’s most powerful in 40 years.

Aftermath of 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami (Photo by Sam Klebanov)

First of all they were delivering water, but later, when the Red Cross took over management of the water supply in the affected areas, Kebanov and his friends decided to bring clothes and toys.

“[The victims’] houses were all swept away. [The kids] didn’t have any toys… We had a touching moment when in one camp we arranged the distribution of toys. It was wonderful,” he recalls with a smile.

Aftermath of 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami (Photo by Sam Klebanov)
 The tsunami was triggered by a 9.1-magnitude earthquake the morning after Christmas, on December 26. A 17-meter-high wave crashed over dozens of countries, including Indonesia, Sri-Lanka, India and Thailand, wiping away entire coastal communities.

Aftermath of 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami (Photo by Sam Klebanov)
 At least 227,898 of people were confirmed dead and thousands remain missing. The survivors saw a dreadful picture of corpse-filled waters in the days after the tragedy. Indonesia’s Aceh province alone saw a death toll of about 168,000 people.

Apart from a large number of local residents killed in the disaster, there were about 9,000 foreign tourists (mostly Europeans) dead or missing.

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Rosetta Mission Update | Jets of Comet 67P -- Failed "Explanations" Continue

Thunderbolts Project | Dec 24, 2014

It seems that the puzzle of cometary jets continues to haunt comet science. The mystery has been stated and re-stated for decades.

But it’s possible that a resolution is now within reach, through the Rosetta Mission to comet 67P?Churyumov Gerasimenko?

This video is the third in a series of reports on the Rosetta Mission. First two updates:
Comets May Not Be What We Thought
Oops! No Water on Comet 67P?

Subscribe to Thunderbolts Update newsletter:
The Thunderbolts Project Home:
Essential Guide to the Electric Universe:
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Monsanto implicated in “fraud and abuse of patent law”

© Farm Wars
Farm Wars | Dec 22, 2014

After opposition: Monsanto patent on tomatoes revoked

Monsanto implicated in “fraud and abuse of patent law”

Christoph Then

No Patents on Seeds

22 December 2014 / Munich. Patent EP1812575 held by the US company Monsanto has been revoked by the European Patent Office (EPO) after the international coalition No Patents on Seeds! filed an opposition in May 2014. A further opposition was filed by Nunhems / Bayer CropScience. In November 2014, Monsanto requested that the patent be revoked in its entirety and the EPO complied with this request. The patent covered conventionally bred tomatoes with a natural resistance to a fungal disease called botrytis, which were claimed as an invention. The original tomatoes used for this patent were accessed via the international gene bank in Gatersleben, Germany, and it was already known that these plants had the desired resistance. Monsanto produced a cleverly worded patent in order to create the impression that genetic engineering had been used to produce the tomatoes and to make it look ‘inventive’.

“Revoking this patent is an important success. It was more or less based on a combination of fraud, abuse of patent law and biopiracy. The patent could have been used to monopolise important genetic resources. Now breeders, growers and consumers have a chance of benefiting from a greater diversity of tomatoes improved by further breeding”, says Christoph Then, a coordinator of No Patents on Seeds!. “The intended resistance is based on complex genetic conditions, which are not known in detail. So genetic engineering is clearly not an option in this case.”

The EPO has already granted more than a hundred patents on the conventional breeding of plants even though “essentially biological processes for the production of plants and animals” and “plant varieties” are excluded from patentability. Altogether, the EPO has granted around 2400 patents on genetically engineered plants many of them owned by Monsanto, which already controls around 25 percent of the international seed market. The coalition of No Patents on Seeds! has filed further oppositions against patents held by the US company covering broccoli which can be harvested mechanically (EP 1597965), melons that are resistant to plant viruses (EP1962578) and a selection of plants for breeding soybeans (EP 2134870) adapted to climate change.

As a recently published “No Patents on Seeds!” report shows, the EPO is granting more and more patents in this field and intentionally undermining existing prohibitions. The coalition is calling on the European governments to take the EPO under political control to ensure a correct interpretation of patent law and enforce prohibitions effectively. No Patents on Seeds! is also calling for a revision of European Patent Law to exclude breeding material, plants and animals and food derived thereof from patentability.

The organisations behind the coalition of No Patents on Seeds! are concerned that patents on plant and animal breeding will foster further market concentration, making farmers and other stakeholders of the food supply chain even more dependent on just a few big international companies and ultimately reduce consumer choice. The coalition of No Patents on Seeds! is organised by Bionext (Netherlands), The Berne Declaration (Switzerland), GeneWatch (UK), Greenpeace, Misereor (Germany), Development Fund (Norway), No Patents on Life (Germany), Red de Semillas (Spain), Rete Semi Rurali (Italy), Reseau Semences Paysannes (France) and Swissaid (Switzerland). They are calling for a revision of European Patent Law to exclude breeding material, plants and animals and food derived thereof from patentability. The coalition is supported by several hundred other organisations.


Christoph Then, phone: 0049 15154638040 ,

No Patents on Seeds report

Text of the opposition and the patent

Fukushima and the institutional invisibility of nuclear disaster

Black smoke at Fukushima
Daichi, 24th March 2011.

Photo: deedavee easyflow via Flickr.
The Ecologist | Dec 20, 2014 | John Downer

Speaking at press conference soon after the accident began, the UK government's former chief science advisor, Sir David King, reassured journalists that the natural disaster that precipitated the failure had been "an extremely unlikely event".

In doing so, he exemplified the many early accounts of Fukushima that emphasised the improbable nature of the earthquake and tsunami that precipitated it.

A range of professional bodies made analogous claims around this time, with journalists following their lead. This lamentation, by a consultant writing in the New American, is illustrative of the general tone:

" ... the Fukushima 'disaster' will become the rallying cry against nuclear power. Few will remember that the plant stayed generally intact despite being hit by an earthquake with more than six times the energy the plant was designed to withstand, plus a tsunami estimated at 49 feet that swept away backup generators 33 feet above sea level."

The explicit or implicit argument in all such accounts is that the Fukushima's proximate causes are so rare as to be almost irrelevant to nuclear plants in the future. Nuclear power is safe, they suggest, except against the specific kind of natural disaster that struck Japan, which is both a specifically Japanese problem, and one that is unlikely to re-occur, anywhere, in any realistic timeframe.

An appealing but tenuous logic

The logic of this is tenuous on various levels. The 'improbability' of the natural disaster is disputable, for one, as there were good reasons to believe that neither the earthquake nor the tsunami should have been surprising. The area was well known to be seismically active after all, and the quake, when it came, was only the fourth largest of the last century.

Read more..

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Mounting Evidence Exposes Dangers of Energy Drinks

© Prevent Disease
Prevent Disease | Dec 22, 2014 | Natasha Longo

Two research papers, each published separately, suggest that concerns over levels of caffeine and sugar in energy drinks, and their effects on young people who drink them, are mounting.

Energy drinks are beverages that claim to "make you more alert and give you energy." Most have ingredients like caffeine, sugar, taurine, vitamins and herbs. They can be found anywhere you buy beverages beside the pop, juices and sports drinks.

The amount of caffeine in energy drinks is more than what is recommended for children. Most government public health agencies say that children under 12 years of age should have less than 85 mg of caffeine per day depending on their age. This means that one energy drink can easily put children over their caffeine limits.

Energy Drinks have previously been found to cause irreversible damage to tooth enamel and detrimentally affect the contraction of the heart. A study published in the issue of General Dentistry, the peer-reviewed clinical journal of the Academy of General Dentistry, found that an alarming increase in the consumption of sports and energy drinks, especially among adolescents, is causing irreversible damage to teeth--specifically, the high acidity levels in the drinks erode tooth enamel, the glossy outer layer of the tooth.

The FDA says they are powerless to change formulation of energy drinks. "We have no guidance or regulations that govern the formulation of energy drinks," said FDA spokeswoman Susan Cruzan. The agency does not have the authority to do that.Cruzan said. "Under current law, the manufacturer is responsible for ensuring that its products are safe and such products do not require FDA premarket review or approval."

"There's a tremendous amount of caffeine in these drinks," Jeanna Marraffa, a clinical toxicologist at the Upstate New York Poison Center told USA TODAY. "I would say: know what's in these products, have a sense of how much you're consuming and realize they are not safe. Certainly you can have toxic effects from them."

Patrice Radden, a spokeswoman for Red Bull, said the company is confident in the safety of its products and does not see the need for warning labels.

All energy drinks including Nos, Red Bull, Rockstar, Monster, Full Throttle and several others all contain many toxic sweeteners such as sucralose, aspartame and high-fructose corn syrup.

3 Times Higher Caffeine

Noting that caffeine levels in energy drinks are up to three times higher than in other caffeinated drinks including coffee or cola, Dorner said known side-effects included a rapid heart rate, palpitations, a rise in blood pressure "and in the most severe cases, seizures or sudden death".

Manufactured by the chemical industry, synthetic caffeine is big business in many drinks that contain the drug.

NATURAL CAFFEINE: Natural, real caffeine comes from various plant species. Caffeine content within these plants will vary throughout the year depending on weather, soil conditions, time of year harvested, etc. So caffeine content is impossible and impractical to determine for labeling on products like coffee or tea. They have constantly changing amounts. Naturally caffeinated products will not have caffeine as an ingredient or measurement on the label.

SYNTHETIC CAFFEINE: The first sign the caffeine in your drink is synthetic is it is listed on the label & has an exact measurement. This is the cheapest & most common added caffeine source. The processes & compounds may vary between chemical companies, but they are all disturbing.

FORTIFIED CAFFEINE: Still usually synthetic, caffeine can be obtained from the coffee decaffeination industry, although it is substantially pricier & rarely used. This will also note caffeine on the label with a measurement. Caffeine supplies from this industry use methylene chloride, formaldehyde or ethyl acetone for it's removal. There is no such thing as removing the caffeine with just water.

Two Studies Expose Dangers

The first study - a study of 10-35 year olds Danes' intake of energy drinks conducted by the National Food Institute of Denmark - shows that when children aged 10-14 consume energy drinks, one in five consumes too much caffeine.

Indeed, when their caffeine intake from other sources such as cola and chocolate is included, every second child, and more than one in three adolescents aged 15-17 consume too much caffeine, said the report.
The Danish report also found that 42% of energy drink consumers have experienced adverse effects such as insomnia, restlessness and heart palpitations.

"It is worrying that so many have experienced adverse effects from drinking energy drinks," said Jeppe Matthiessen, senior adviser from the National Food Institute.

The report also suggests that 10-14 year olds have 'limited knowledge' of the ingredients in energy drinks, the side effects of drinking them and the recommendation that children, pregnant women and breastfeeding mothers should not consume energy drinks.

"It seems as if there has been a change in the perception of the types of drinks that people consider normal to drink," said Matthiessen. "Among younger consumers energy drinks now have the same status as soft drinks had previously."

"Both the use of and attitudes towards energy drinks give us reason to be concerned that the intake will increase in the coming years and we therefore suggest that more information will be made available about energy drinks aimed at children and adolescents as well as their parents."

Sugar and caffeine?

A second study, published in the Journal of Caffeine Research, adds to the debate on caffeine and energy drinks by evaluating whether the effects of caffeine differ with or without sugar.

The results the research show that the physiological responses to caffeine with and without sugar 'varied widely' between individuals.

Elaine Rush and her colleagues from Aukland University measured the heart rate and carbon dioxide production (as a measure of respiration) of individuals for 30 minutes before and after they consumed a defined quantity of sugar, caffeine, or sugar and caffeine.

The team said that the wide range of responses may be due to the effects of caffeine phenotype, physical activity level, habitual intake and metabolic responses, including markers of de novo lipogenesis -- adding that further research is needed.

Natasha Longo has a master's degree in nutrition and is a certified fitness and nutritional counselor. She has consulted on public health policy and procurement in Canada, Australia, Spain, Ireland, England and Germany.

Monday, December 22, 2014

Spy drones expose factory farming's disgusting environmental devastation they don't want us to know about

© Natural News
Natural News | Dec 20, 2014 | Kali Sinclair

We've known the horrific conditions animals endure when raised in factory farms. One could only hope we have all seen some footage that shows chickens, cows, or pigs crammed into tiny spaces so filled that the animals cannot turn around or lay down. One thing we haven't seen until now are the cesspools created by factory farming.

Mark Devries, director of the documentary Speciesism, the Movie, explores the cultural belief that "our species is more important than the rest." His exposure of factory farming as "one of the greatest evils in our history" should give us pause. After all, animal cruelty laws are widely upheld when it comes to the treatment of cats, dogs, and horses. For some reason they don't apply to factory raised animals.

Factory farms are tucked away and hidden from prying eyes. In his film, Mark crawls through bushes, flies over factory farms, and even uses a drone to videotape the landscape. In a clip (see video below) his drone reveals a cesspool the size of three football fields. The cesspool is simply a giant trench filled to the brim with pig feces and urine. The metal buildings beside the cesspool hold pigs crammed nose to tail. Waste is flushed under each building to the cesspools and then sprayed into the air.

Now here's the interesting part. The animal waste is not pumped into a treatment facility. It is not pumped into a septic tank. It is not treated in any way. It is sprayed into the air.

From there, where does it go? While giant factory farms make an effort to hide away in rural settings, they still have neighbors. Their practice of spraying waste into the air causes it to drift onto their neighbors' property. The odor alone is unimaginable. At times, it rain animal feces onto the neighbors' yards and houses. Asthma rates, especially for children, are high. Runoff from factory farms contaminates waterways and groundwater.

Animals raised under these conditions are highly susceptible to disease. Initial reports regarding the Swine flu epidemic identified patient zero as a child who lived near a factory farm, but these reports were quickly squashed.

If you need a more reasons to stay away from factory farmed meat, check out, Food for Naught.


About the author:
Kali Sinclair is a copywriter for Green Lifestyle Market, and a lead editor for Organic Lifestyle Magazine. Kali was very sick with autoimmune disease and realized that conventional medicine was not working for her. She has been restoring her health by natural means and is interested in topics including natural health, environmental issues, and human rights.

Amazing Facts: Termites produce more CO2 each year than all living things combined

Ice Age Now | Dec 20, 2014

Termite and Carbon Dioxide (CO2) Facts:

Scientists have calculated that termites alone produce ten times as much carbon dioxide as all the fossil fuels burned in the whole world in a year.

Pound for pound, the weight of all the termites in the world is greater than the total weight of humans.

Scientists estimate that, worldwide, termites may release over 150 million tons of methane gas into the atmosphere annually. In our lower atmosphere this methane then reacts to form carbon dioxide and ozone.
It is estimated that for every human on Earth there may be 1000 pounds of termites.

On the average Termites expel gas composed of about 59% nitrogen, 21% hydrogen, 9% carbon dioxide, 7% methane, and 4% oxygen.

It is thought “There are 2,600 different species of termites, and it is estimated that there are at least a million billion individual termites on Earth, that they emit two and four percent of the global carbon dioxide and methane budget, respectively-both mediated directly or indirectly by their microbes.

Thanks to E Stephens for this link

Sunday, December 21, 2014

How One Indigenous Woman Took On a Multinational Mining Corporation... And Won

Common Dreams | Dec 19, 2014 | Sarah Lazare

Acuña de Chaupe at her property in front
of the Blue Lagoon (Photo: Jorge Chávez Ortiz)
Indigenous Peruvian farmworker Maxima Acuña de Chaupe withstood violent eviction attempts, beatings, and a legal battle to protect her land from being turned into an open-pit gold mine

For over three years, indigenous Peruvian farmworker Maxima Acuña de Chaupe has refused to allow a U.S.-based multinational corporation to turn her land into an open-pit gold mine, withstanding multiple violent eviction attempts by corporate and state agents.

On Wednesday, Acuña de Chaupe finally saw victory when a Peruvian appeals court struck down a lawsuit levied by the Yanacocha mine—which is 51 percent owned by Colorado's Newmont Mining Corporation—that had sought to expel and imprison the family for "invading" their own land.

The ruling is an important win in a case that has become a rallying point for local resistance to multinational plunder.

In 1994, Acuña de Chaupe and her family built their home in Tragadero Grande in the region of Cajamarca next to the Blue Lagoon of Celendin. This lake was sought after for the building of the open-pit Conga gold mining project—an extension of the one at Yanacocha.

This mine is widely opposed by peasant, worker, and indigenous peoples in the region, who have protested its resource extraction, exploitation, displacement, and environmental harm with with mass marches and general strikes.

When Yanacocha sought to buy Acuña de Chaupe's land in 2011, she refused, in a bid to protect the environment and her family's home.

"I may be poor. I may be illiterate, but I know that our mountain lakes are our real treasure," Acuña de Chaupe told New Internationalist Magazine two years ago. "From them, I can get fresh and clean water for my children, for my husband and for my animals!"

"Yet, are we expected to sacrifice our water and our land so that the Yanacocha people can take gold back to their country? Are we supposed to sit quietly and just let them poison our land and water?" Acuña de Chaupe continued.

What ensued, according to Acuña de Chaupe, was a corporate intimidation campaign, orchestrated by the mining company with the aid of private security and the Peruvian state.

Acuña de Chaupe says she and her family have faced at least three violent eviction attempts by the company, aided by Peruvian police and soldiers. One beating left Acuña de Chaupe and her daughter unconscious and landed her son in the hospital.

The plight of Acuña de Chaupe and her family sparked outrage and support from regional and international organizations, including the Women's Movement of Peru and World March of Women. At the recent People's Summit in Lima, Peru, climate justice advocates held a large rally in solidarity with Acuña de Chaupe.

Here is a video of Acuña de Chaupe telling her story:

La Jalqueñita - english
from Alexander Luna on Vimeo.

When Acuña de Chaupe refused to give in, Yanacocha sued her and her family on charges they were illegally occupying their own land. In August, a judge sentenced four members of her family to "to two years and eight months of suspended imprisonment for not vacating the land," Telesur reports. "The judge also ordered the family to pay close to US$2,000 in penalties."

Wednesday's ruling, however, tosses out all of these sentences.

"I want to thank the judges of the court of justice of Cajamarca for being impartial and applying justice and for not permitting that we the farmworkers suffer at the hands of Yanacocha," Acuña de Chaupe declared following her acquittal. "I pray to God to take care of them. During the four years this process has lasted, many authorities tortured me, defamed me, and persecuted me. But here we have good authorities."

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Florida City Mandates Non-GMO Vending Machines

© Natural Society
Natural Society | Dec 20, 2014 | Christina Sarich

Non-GMO, Healthier Snack Choices

The Mayor of Hollywood, Florida is every working person’s hero for mandating that all city-owned vending machines offer non-GMO, healthier snack choices.

This decision made by Mayor Peter Bober will positively affect all 45 city vending machines and thousands of people who work in government offices every day. As most of us are aware, grabbing a quick snack at the office is an all too frequent necessity, even when we would prefer to sit down to a healthy meal.

At least 30% of the products in each machine will meet the American Heart Association’s recommended standards for food and beverages offered in the workplace. Another 20% will meet at least one of the recommended standards, and at least some of the options are to be non-GMO.

Hollywood, Florida is part of a growing trend to make food and beverages sold through vending machines healthier. In Washington, DC, they will soon require that at least half of the offerings meet healthy nutrition standards based on existing federal guidelines. Many other cities are looking to do away with GMO-laden snacks as well.

Healthy vending companies have developed ready-made menu planograms that meet USDA nutrition requirements created by Registered Dieticians. Additionally, they can work with interested citizens to meet specific needs including offering Gluten-Free, Nut-Free, Dairy-Free and Non-GMO selections.

Victory: City in Florida to Declare Mandatory Labeling

This is a positive step toward eradicating the junk-food habit in America. In fact, more and more Americans are saying no to sugar, empty calories, and GMO foods.

Happily, companies like Coca-Cola and McDonald’s will need to make major changes to their menus if they want to stay in business. Coca-Cola saw 14 percent less profit in its recent quarter as global soda sales remain flat. McDonald’s said it needs to make major changes to its business to survive. Shares have fallen more than 5 percent this year.

Healthier ‘fast-food’ options like Chipotle, are gaining market share. They have been big supporters of alternatives to Big Ag farming methods, and they are moving toward using even more organic ingredients than they already do.

By adding healthy vending machines to the mix, we can expect health statistics to improve across the nation, and health-care costs to fall. Now – if we could just get companies to offer free yoga at lunch.

Movement against Fracking Wins as New York Bans Hydraulic Fracturing

Global Research | Dec 19, 2014 | Kevin Zeese

In a major victory for people who have been working to stop hydraulic fracturing for gas, known as fracking, Governor Andrew Cuomo of New York announced a ban on fracking in New York State.

This would not have occurred had it not been for the consistent and ongoing educating, organizing and mobilizing by groups like New Yorkers Against Fracking and We Are Seneca Lake, among others. This has been a six year campaign of creative protests, civil resistance, direct action and local communities voting to ban fracking, a power upheld by New York’s highest court.  One opponent of fracking, Walter Hang, an environmental mapping consultant wrote:

This stupendous victory was won by an unrelenting grassroots citizen campaign powered by amazing press coverage that systematically highlighted the public health and environmental concerns of shale fracking. That effort has won a victory unparalleled in the annals of the American environmental movement.

Tom Wilber who writes Shale Gas Review which covers gas development in Marcellus and Utica shales, noted the power of the anti-fracking movement and how it related to the science on fracking:

Science is part of the calculus. But despite what Cuomo would like us to believe, scientists don’t make these kinds of decisions. The full equation is Science + politics = policy. Cuomo finally got tired of being hounded on the issue by his political base. The movement in New York against shale gas was relentless and it was focused on him.

People rising up and saying ‘no’ to fracking made it impossible for the government to ignore the health, safety and environmental problems caused by fracking. See this December 2014 compendium of the research. This victory is one that will spur the anti-fracking movement throughout the country and puts in question the fracking infrastructure being built, e.g. pipelines, compressor stations and export terminals, currently being pushed throughout the country by Big Energy.

Inside Climate News reports that Sandra Steingraber, an environmental health expert and fracking activist in New York, told them from the parking lot of a sheriff’s office where she was bailing out 28 musicians arrested in an ongoing protest against a fracked gas storage facility in the Seneca Lakes region of New York that when she told the activists the news, they picked up their instruments and there was “singing and dancing in the streets.” She added “Fracking is able to roll over so many communities because people are told it is inevitable. This decision emboldens us all. It shows this fight is winnable.”

At a meeting in Calvert County last night where Dominion Resources is building a fracked gas export terminal, Tracey Eno of Calvert Citizens for a Healthy Community, a member ofWe Are Cove Point, mentioned the Cuomo decision to inspire people to realize that we can defeat big energy.

Yesterday morning we received an email message urging people in New York to prepare to protest as Governor Cuomo was expected to announce three pilot fracking projects in New York, instead the governor decided to continue the moratorium on fracking. This reminds us that we often do not realize how close we are to victory, indeed people often feel like they are failing or cannot win, when in fact victory is within reach and much closer than they realize.

Cuomo spoke briefly at a press conference after his cabinet meeting announcing the fracking ban and saying he was following the advice of experts. He then turned the press conference over to them to explain the decision.

The New York Times reports that the state health commissioner expressed concerns about the health impacts of fracking:

In a presentation at the cabinet meeting, the acting state health commissioner, Dr. Howard A. Zucker, said the examination had found “significant public health risks” associated with fracking.

Holding up copies of scientific studies to animate his arguments, Dr. Zucker listed concerns about water contamination and air pollution, and said there was insufficient scientific evidence to affirm the safety of fracking.

Dr. Zucker said his review boiled down to a simple question: Would he want his family to live in a community where fracking was taking place?

Zucker said that in other states where fracking is already happening, he found that state health commissioners “weren’t even at the table.”

At the same time, Joe Martens, the environmental commissioner described the economic stimulus from fracking was not as great telling a press conference that the prospects for fracking in New York are “uncertain at best” and describing economic benefits as “far lower than originally forecasted.”  As The Times reported:

Martens noted the low price of natural gas, the high local cost of industry oversight and the large areas that would be off-limits to shale gas development because of setback requirements, water supply protections, and local prohibitions. He said those factors combine to make fracking less economically beneficial than had been anticipated.

Chip Northrup, a former oil and gas investor who writes the No Fracking Way blog that opposes drilling in New York, wrote about the views of commissioners Zucker and Martens:

Both of them cited the greatly reduced area where fracking would actually take place in New York – since most upstate towns ban it.

And the only towns that might allow it are in an small area by the Pennsylvania border that is not currently economic.  So, frankly, simply not worth fracking fooling with.

Which makes perfect sense from all standpoints: environmentally, economically and politically.
At the press conference Cuomo said  “I think it’s our responsibility to develop an alternative … for safe, clean economic development.”

We urge advocates and the governor to now put in place a strategy to make New York the first state to put in place a carbon-free, nuclear-free energy economy by 2025. This is not an impossible fantasy but an achievable goal. Here is one example of how New York could achieve a clean energy economy.  Putting in place a clean energy policy is the kind of leadership that could revive Cuomo, who had a very difficult re-election, as a viable presidential candidate in 2020.

Kevin Zeese is co-director of Popular Resistance which is a member of We Are Cove Point which seeks to stop the development of a fracked gas expert terminal at Cove Point in Maryland.

Source: Popular Resistance

Friday, December 19, 2014

The Fukushima Endgame: The Radioactive Contamination of the Pacific Ocean

Global Research | Dec 17, 2014 | Prof Michel Chossudovsky

Nuclear radiation resulting from the March 2011 Fukushima disaster –which threatens life on planet earth– is not front page news in comparison to the most insignificant issues of public concern, including the local level crime scene or the tabloid gossip reports on Hollywood celebrities.

The shaky political consensus both in Japan, the U.S. and Western Europe is that the crisis at Fukushima has been contained. 

The truth is otherwise. Known and documented, the ongoing dumping of highly radioactive water into the Pacific Ocean constitutes a potential trigger to a process of global radioactive contamination. 

This water contains plutonium 239 and its release into the Ocean has both local as well as global repercussions.  A microgram of plutonium if inhaled, according to Dr. Helen Caldicott, can cause death:
Certain isotopes of radioactive plutonium are known as some of the deadliest poisons on the face of the earth. A mere microgram (a speck of darkness on a pinhead) of Plutonium-239, if inhaled, can cause death, and if ingested, radioactive Plutonium can be harmful, causing leukemia and other bone cancers.

“In the days following the 2011 earthquake and nuclear plant explosions, seawater meant to cool the nuclear power plants instead carried radioactive elements back to the Pacific ocean. Radioactive Plutonium was one of the elements streamed back to sea.” (
It would appear that the radioactive water has already penetrated parts of the Japanese coastline:
Environmental testing of shoreline around the nuclear plant (as well fish, especially Tuna) showed negligible amounts of Plutonium in the seawater. The Plutonium, from what little is reported, sank into the sediments off the Japanese coast.”  (Ibid)
Read more..

Rosetta Mission Update | Oops! No Water on Comet 67P?

Thunderbolts Project | Dec 18, 2014

The comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko will be in the news for several months. And it has the potential to spark extensive controversy.  Issues could range from electric fields in space, to solar system history and the history of earth itself.

See Segment 1:

Executive Producer: Gerald Simonson
Script and Narration: David Talbott
Chief Science Advisor: Wal Thornhill
Animation and Editing: Brian Talbott
Executive Assistant: Susan Schirott
Music: Softsound (Nancy Holt)

Subscribe to Thunderbolts Update newsletter:
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Thursday, December 18, 2014

Stormy Planet: Signs of Change December 2014

HawkkeyDavisChannel | Dec 17, 2014

#10 in series of documenting extreme weather events...

Out of Control Fracking Well Forces Evacuations

Efforts Tuesday to regain control of a fracking
well Tuesday failed.  (Photo: bill baker/flickr/cc)
Common Dreams | Dec 17, 2014 | Andrea Germanos

Official said Tuesday blowout at Monroe County, Ohio well remained a threat

An out-of-control natural gas fracking well in Monroe County, Ohio forced more than two dozen families from their homes and may pose the threat of an explosion.

The blowout at the Triad Hunter-operated well on the Utica Shale happened at approximately 2:00 p.m. EST on December 13, 2014, according to a statement released Sunday by the operator's parent company, Magnum Hunter Resources Corporation.

According to reporting by the Columbus Dispatch, the well had been temporarily plugged a year ago.
The company states that "despite numerous precautionary measures taken in connection with the temporary plugging and abandonment operation, the well began to flow uncontrollably while recommencing production operations. Triad Hunter personnel were removing the well's night cap flange when a pressure disruption occurred. They attempted to bolt back down this equipment but were not able to safely do so prior to natural gas flowback."

Bethany McCorkle, a spokeswoman for the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, the agency which regulates the gas and oil industry, told the Dispatch Tuesday: "There’s still a steady stream of natural gas coming from the wellhead," and though there is no fire, the gas being emitted could be explosive.

No injuries have been reported in the incident so far.  Over twenty-five families in the area were evacuated, though they now have daytime access to their homes.

According to reporting by Wheeling, West Virginia's WTRF, the first attempt to regain control of the well failed on Tuesday.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Medieval City's Underground Ruins Discovered in England

Archaeologists have uncovered the layout
of a medieval city near Salisbury, England.

Credit: English Heritage
Live Science | Dec 16, 2014 | Kelly Dickerson

Archaeologists have uncovered the network of a medieval city in England that dates back to the late 11th century.

The settlement, which includes a cathedral and a castle, is located at the historic site of Old Sarum, near Salisbury. In its heyday, the city thrived for about 300 years, but eventually declined in the 13th century, with the Roman conquest and the rise of New Sarum, the researchers said. Archaeologists have long known that the medieval city existed in Old Sarum, but this is the first detailed layout of the city ever created.

"Our survey shows where individual buildings are located and from this we can piece together a detailed picture of the urban plan within the city walls," Kristian Strutt, an archaeologist from the University of Southampton who is working on the site, said in a statement.

Strutt and the team discovered a series of huge structures that line the southern edge of the city's outer wall. The archaeologists think the structures are remnants of large defensive buildings that were designed to protect the city.

The team also found evidence of residential homes clustered in the southeastern and southwestern corners, between the outer and inner city walls. Old mineral deposits scattered throughout the site may be remnants of kilns or furnaces. Some evidence suggests the city may have been lived in again for a brief period after the 1300s.

The Old Sarum site belongs to English Heritage, an organization that advises the English government on historical sites. Because English Heritage wants to preserve the site, Strutt and the team of researchers didn't rely on traditional, Indiana Jones-style excavation tools. Instead, the researchers scanned the site using a series of noninvasive, high-tech survey techniques.

Archaeology tools have grown increasingly more sophisticated, and archaeologists are even using 3D-printed drones to explore sites now. For the Old Sarum survey, the team started by using magnetometry, a method that measures patterns in magnetic field strength. Magnetometry can create a map of features lying just below the Earth's surface, since every material has a unique magnetic property that leaves its own distinct signature on a magnet reader. The researchers also used ground-penetrating radar (GPR), which fires Earth-penetrating microwaves at the ground and measures signals that reflect off structures lying below the surface.

The team also used a method called electrical resistivity tomography (ERT). ERT is a noninvasive way to get a picture of structures that might be buried deeper than magnetometers or GPR can detect. The method involves strands of electrodes lowered into deep boreholes. The electrodes can pick up the electrical resistance of currents that pass through materials buried below the surface.

Follow Kelly Dickerson on Twitter. Follow us @livescience, Facebook & Google+. Original article on Live Science.

Canada pressures US to pass Keystone XL as falling oil prices threaten project

Joe Raedle / Getty Images / AFP
RT | Dec 15, 2014

The Keystone XL pipeline may no longer make economic sense to build, thanks to falling global oil prices. However, Canada's natural resources minister is in Washington to push hard for the project’s construction.

On Friday, the price of crude oil dropped below $60 a barrel, down from a high of $116 in June. Oil demand growth for 2015 was slashed by 230,000 barrels per day, and is set to only increase by one percent, or by 900,000 barrels to 93.3 million barrels per day. In 2014, that number was 92.4 million barrels per day.

The plummeting oil prices are a good thing for environmentalists opposed to the Keystone pipeline extension.
“Oil prices going low gives the president a landing place to reject the pipeline because Canada needs cheap and big infrastructure,” Jane Kleeb, founder of the anti-Keystone group Bold Nebraska, told Politico. “When oil prices are high, producing the expensive and high-carbon tar sands makes sense. But now that oil is low, the only way tar sands will continue to expand is if Canada gets big pipelines.”

The proposed extension would have allowed the transport of crude oil from Canada's tar sands to the Gulf of Mexico, traveling from Hardisty, Alberta in Canada to Steele City, Nebraska in the US. There, it would join the already-built Keystone pipeline, traveling to Patoka, Illinois or Nederland, Texas via Cushing, Oklahoma, through a newly completed extension.

By some estimates, the price of oil has already dropped below what investors in Keystone would need to break even, and some analysts believe further drops are in store, the Los Angeles Times reported.

"The recent decline in [oil] prices has to give the sponsors some pause," Chris Lafakis, a senior economist at Moody's Analytics, told the paper.

A recent State Department study found that when oil is selling for $65-$75 per barrel, it is a "potential danger zone" for oil production in western Canada – the point where transportation costs driven higher by failing to build the pipeline could "have a substantial impact" on the industry's growth, according to Politico.

The price of oil has lost 20 percent since the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries’ (OPEC) last meeting on November 27, when the consortium ‒ heavily influenced by Saudi Arabia ‒ decided not keep the market over-supplied in an attempt to drive out more high-cost producing nations, such as Russia, Venezuela, Iran, Iraq, the US, and Canada.

United Arab Emirates Energy Minister Suhail Al-Mazrouei says OPEC will maintain output at 30 million barrels of oil a day, and wants to monitor the price for three months before even considering a meeting about possible changes.

“We are not going to change our minds because the prices went to $60 or to $40,” Mazrouei told Bloomberg on Sunday at a conference in Dubai.

Within the US, the project faces an uphill battle for approval. In mid-November, the lame-duck US Senate failed to fast-track the Keystone XL pipeline project, falling one vote short of breaking a filibuster against the bill. The Nebraska Supreme Court is expected to rule as early as Friday on ongoing litigation in that could ultimately affect the pipeline route in that state.

It is amid this global setting that Canadian Natural Resources Minister Greg Rickford is in Washington, DC to meet with his American and Mexican counterparts, US Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz and Mexican Secretary of Energy Pedro Joaquin Coldwell. Much of the agenda will focus on energy data and Mexico’s regulatory reforms for its oil and energy sector, but the three “will surely discuss energy infrastructure” as it pertains to the Keystone project, Global News reported.

Rickford told reporters at a Monday press conference that the project to carry oil sands from Alberta to Gulf of Mexico refineries would help the US end its dependence on unreliable sources of oil in the Middle East and elsewhere.

The US Congress is expected to take up the proposed legislation in the new year, once all the newly elected members are in office..