Tuesday, 11 March 2008


So far the global warming by an estimated 0,7 degrees Celsius has given effects to plant life on a global level. According to estimates the vegetation has increased with 6% between 1982 and 1999. This is expected as carbondioxide is one essential part of the photosyntesis process that is feeding plant growth.

As an effect it is expected that already dry areas will become drier in many cases, as well as the opposite many rainy countries will get wetter. And some countries will be even wetter due to rise in sea levels. Furthermore, the effects will have the largest negative impact tin development countries and the most positive effects in industrialised countries. Obviously third world countries will require help from richer and more developed countries. Not only in the form of money, but also in the form of a commitment to battling the cause of the problem, the emissions causing climate change.

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Sunday, 9 March 2008


This is a testimony of the backside of ethanol, a fuel which is sold as a environmental friendly alternative to oil and gasolin. In reality ethanol creates emissions comparable to those of gasolin.

The image is showing a ethanol plant. It indicates that ethanol is not a solution, maybe not even an improvement...

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Saturday, 8 March 2008

Bush wants torture

Bush has now put in his veto against a law banning torture methods that has been used in interrogation of suspected terrorists in US prison camps. Examples of methods in use include drowning of prisoners as a part of interrogation. Bush claims this is a vital part of the war on terror and refuses to ban it.

Yet again Bush has shown no respect to human right and international conventions. Hopefully the next president will stop this. If McCaine wins, a pro-war republican, I am however not confident this will be stopped. But if a democrat wins this law is very likely to be imposed.

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A brand new heart

A major biomedical break through has been done lately, scientist at University of Minnesota has succesfully created a mouse heart in a lab. It has been done from the extra cellular matrix of an old heart, meaning that the cells of the heart has been removed leaving only the parts holding the cells together. Thereafter new heart cells have been translated into this template, which has succesfully grown to create a new heart.

This creates new opportunities for heart transplants, although it is still a long way until it will be available to humans. By doing a transplant in this manner the patients on cells can be used, meaning that problems with rejection and immune system will be decreased. The immune system will attack a foreign object within the body, such as a transplanted heart, but with this method the new heart will not be foreign and thus avoid immune system attacks. The dream is to be able to use the extra cellular matrix an animal cadavre and the patients own cells to create a new functioning heart for persons with severe cardiac diseases.

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Thursday, 6 March 2008


Just to spoil the US election the winner has already been revealed. Well maybe not for real, but anyways...

The results of the US election

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Tuesday, 4 March 2008

Noah's vault

On the Norwegian islands of Spitsbergen (Svalbard) a vault has been constructed with the purpose to store seeds to ensure biological diversity. Blasted out of icy rock 1,000 km (600 miles) from the North Pole, the air-locked vaults would stay frozen for 200 years even in the worst-case scenario of global warming and if mechanical refrigeration were to fail, officials said.

The vault is constructed deep inside a mountain and protected by concrete walls, designed to withstand earthquakes, nuclear warfare, and floods resulting from global warming. At the opening ceremony on February 27th 100 million seeds from 268,000 samples were placed in the vault, which has capacity to store around 2 billion seeds. This initiative is more important now than ever, with the overhanging threat of global warming and chnages to ecosystems as a result of it. The vault will act as a bank allowing countries to use their deposited seeds and also serve as a "backup" for local seed banks.

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Monday, 3 March 2008

...Medvedev and Putin

No surprises here, Medvedev won as expected and foreign power will surely come with critique regarding the election and the way it was carried out. With large companies forcing their employees to vote a certain way, media that is almost totally controlled by the ruling party and other pressure on the public to vote a certain way.

One can only wonder how loyal Medvedev will be to Putin and how long he will follow in his footsteps.

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Sunday, 2 March 2008

And the winner is...

As opposed to the US election, which is still looks quite even and undecided, there is the Russian election. The outcome of the election has been clear for a long time, Medvedev will take over after Putin. After being ruled by the strong leader Putin, Russia has reclaimed some of its former glory, but also create large inequalities and a tightly controlled society.

The question is what will Putin do. It would be hard to believe that he would leave power; rather he would seek alternative position from which he can influence the outcome. Especially, since Medvedev is a long time coleague of Putin. Putin has created a growing economy with huge more or less state controlled corporations, such as Gazprom. The power structure he has created has several of his closest men in high positions, giving him an enormous power.

What will happen now after th election? Will anything change?

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