Charity says Ebola epidemic ‘out of control’


Al Jazeera English

Published on Jul 31, 2014

The organisation that represents the world’s major airlines, IATA, says there are no plans to impose travel restrictions because of the Ebola outbreak in West Africa. It says the risk of contracting the virus from a fellow passenger is low. At least 672 people have now died from the disease. Al Jazeera’s Dominic Kane reports.

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BBC News – Africa ‘missing out on biotech green revolution’

24 July 2014 Last updated at 21:20 ET
By Mark Kinver Environment reporter, BBC News
Biotechnology could help improve African agriculture’s resilience to future climate changes
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Sub-Saharan Africa’s agricultural sector needs to harvest the fruits of biotechnology in order to establish sustainable development, says a report.

A key challenge is to attract funding for biotechnology projects on staple crops, such as cassava, it added.

These crops were often ignored by commercial funders because they had a limited market, the authors suggested.

Africa missed out on the previous green revolution that boosted food output in many Asian and Latin American nations.

The report, On Trial: GM Crops in Africa, published by think tank Chatham House, said: “Increasing agricultural productivity and adapting farming to climate change are central to Africa’s development prospects.”

It added that there were opportunities to boost yields and increase resilience by improving existing crop varieties, and that “in some cases, biotechnology, and in particular genetic modification (GM), offers advantages over conventional plant-breeding approaches”, such as drought, pest and disease resistance.

….(read more).

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BBC News – Ebola: Liberia shuts schools to tackle outbreak

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-28576010
30 July 2014 Last updated at 18:50

Liberia’s government has announced that it is closing down all schools across the country to stop the spread of the deadly Ebola virus.

Some communities would be placed under quarantine as well, President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf said.

Non-essential government workers will be sent home for 20 days and the army deployed to enforce the measures.

The number of people killed by the virus in West Africa has now reached 672, according to new UN figures.

The BBC’s West Africa correspondent Thomas Fessy says treatment facilities have reportedly been overwhelmed in the Liberian capital Monrovia.

Some wards have already filled up, forcing health workers to treat some patients at their homes.

….(read more).

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BBC News – Call for ‘radical action’ on drug-resistant malaria

http://www.bbc.com/news/health-28569966
30 July 2014 Last updated at 17:28 ET
By Helen Briggs Health editor, BBC News website

Malaria-infected red blood cells
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Drug-resistant malaria is spreading in South East Asia, and has now reached the Cambodia-Thailand border, according to a study.

“Radical action” is needed to prevent further spread of malaria parasites resistant to key drugs, say scientists.

The spread could undermine recent gains in malaria control, they report in the New England Journal of Medicine.

No evidence was found of resistance in three African sites – Kenya, Nigeria and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The study analysed blood samples from more than 1,000 malaria patients in 10 countries across Asia and Africa.

…(read more).

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Thom Hartmann on Science & Green News: July 28, 2014


Published on Jul 28, 2014

Thom Hartmann on Science & Green News for the week of July 28, 2014.

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