June 13, 2013

    Photo: Courtesy of Whitney Dreier

Maine Passes GMO Labeling Bill

Goes to governor to sign

A new Maine law that would require companies to label food that contains genetically modified organisms will only go into effect if five contiguous states passed similar bills. The bill, which passed the state senate unanimously and now heads to governor Paul LePage, is designed to defray legal costs should Montsanto follow through on a threat to sue states that pass similar laws.

The state is the second to give the nod to GMO labeling legislation, following Connecticut's passage of a similar law this month. Like Maine, Connecticut's law won't go into effect unless other states pass similar measures.

Via New York Daily News

0 Comments

    Photo: Sergey Dubrov/Shutterstock

Ship Cook Survives Underwater For 2 Days

Survived in an air bubble

A Nigerian cook sat in darkness, breathing through a four-foot-high air pocket, for almost 60 hours after his tugboat capsized off Nigeria’s coast. Divers were shocked to find him alive in the wreck, which had plunged almost 100 feet under the water.

Harrison Okene, 29, said he had been in the toilet on May 26 when the vessel overturned in heavy swells. He was swept into another room containing an air bubble as fellow crewmembers were sucked into the sea. Okene says he cried and prayed for two days as water seeped in around him. “The fish came in and began eating the bodies,” he said. “I could hear the sound. It was horror.”

Okene was able to get the attention of a diving team sent to search the wreck, and after reaching the surface he spent 60 hours in a decompression chamber. His body had absorbed potentially fatal amounts of nitrogen remaining at a depth at which most recreational divers would spend no more than 20 minutes. “To survive that long at that depth is phenomenal,” said a representative from the Professional Association of Diving Instructors. Though Okene says he still suffers from nightmares, he has made a remarkable recovery.

0 Comments

    Photo: Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

Facebook Opens Arctic Circle Data Center

Using freezing air to cool servers

Want to build a massive data center but don’t want to pay the environmental costs of cooling your super-heated servers? Head to the Arctic Circle. That’s what Facebook is doing with its new data center in Luleå, Sweden, where temperatures have been known to get as low as -41.8 degrees Fahrenheit.

Facebook says they will use the freezing air to cool the thousands of servers within the building while harnessing any excess heat to keep the offices themselves warm. The company claims that the power usage efficiency at the facility is averaging 1.07 on the power usage effectiveness score, lower and greener than Google, which runs between 1.08 and 2.12.

In addition to the facility’s green cooling method, Facebook claims that all the equipment is powered by locally generated hydroelectric power. They have also praised the local community, saying: "Since we first announced our plans to come here, the local community has been amazingly supportive."

0 Comments

    Photo: Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

Condo Starts Dog Poop DNA Database

Facing a feces crisis

A York County, Pennsylvania, condo complex is turning to extreme measures to combat an overflowing tide of animal refuse. With parents unwilling to let their children play in the grass for fear of dog poo, the complex plans to implement the "Poo-Prints" program, which will use DNA testing to spot the serial offenders.

The condo association will collect DNA samples from all dogs on site and then store them in a system. Once enforced, any dog feces found matching a resident's pet will result in fines: $120 for the first offences, $240 for the second, and $360 for the third.

"It's an investment, Lee March, a resident and the board's president, told CBS 21 News. "It's an investment to get our property clean. We would not have to do this if all of our owners cleaned up."

CBS 21 News reports—using confidential sources—that residents have regularly stepped in feces, only to track it indoors and onto their carpets. According to a video from Poo-Prints, the DNA testing is scientific and used in home associations across the country.

0 Comments

Comments