Wednesday, April 08, 2015

ECO ApriGeo News (April 2015 - Β)

The removal of hundreds of thousands of tons of water containing tritium, a relatively harmless radioactive isotope left behind in treated water, is one of many issues facing Tepco as it tries to clean up the wrecked plant.......Tepco may evaporate tritium-laced Fukushima water instead of ocean release

(April 2015 - A)


  1. EU approves support to 20 offshore wind farms in Germany ...

    The European Union (EU) found that German plans to support the building of 20 offshore wind farms were in line with EU state aid rules, said the European Commission on Thursday.

    Seventeen wind farms would be located in the North Sea and the other three in the Baltic Sea, according to a press release by the Commission.

    The Commission assessed the projects under its guidelines on state aid for environmental protection and energy that entered into force in July 2014, and concluded that the project would further EU energy and environmental objectives without unduly distorting competition in the single market.

    Germany notified plans to support the construction and operation of several offshore wind farms in October 2014. Aid would be granted to operators in the form of a premium paid on top of the market price for electricity. All wind farms planned to start producing electricity by the end of 2019 at the latest.

    In total, they are expected to generate 28 terawatt-hours of renewable electricity per year, amounting to almost 13 percent of Germany's 2020 scenario for renewable energy given in the National Renewable Energy Action Plan.
    Xinhua -

  2. Russia to Launch National Orbital Station by 2023 - Putin...

    Russia's plan to build a new space outpost was confirmed December 2014, by Oleg Ostapenko, head of Roscosmos space agency at the time. He said the new space station would also serve as a base for Russia's lunar program.

    President Putin said:

    "By 2023 we are going to create our own national orbital station in orbit… We will definitely bring this project to fruition, and, no doubt, it will be under our control."

    The president added that planning a decade into the future is necessary. Russia actively participates in the use and maintenance of the International Space Station (ISS) in scientific and economic ways despite the fact that only five percent of Russian territory can be seen from the ISS.

    “From the national station, of course, we will be able to see the whole territory of our vast country.".........

  3. Egypt completes dry digging in new Suez Canal...

    Egyptian workers have finalized dry digging work on the new Suez Canal project, a military official overseeing the scheme said Thursday.

    The route is now ready for furnishing work after 230 million cubic meters were dug along 35 kilometers, Gen. Kamel al-Wazir, head of Egypt's Armed Forces Engineering Corps, told reporters.

    Last August, Egypt began digging a 72-kilometer waterway parallel to the Suez Canal at a total cost of $8 billion to facilitate maritime traffic and reduce the time needed for ships to cross from the Red Sea to the Mediterranean Sea.

    The new waterway is part of Egypt's ambitious Suez Canal Corridor Development project.

    The project aims to boost traffic through the strategic waterway and bring more foreign currency to Egypt, the economy of which has been battered by three years of post-Arab Spring turmoil.

    A number of factories and service projects are expected to be created in the area, with a view to tapping fresh sources of foreign currency.

  4. Cinq cents astéroïdes menacent potentiellement la Terre...

    Environ 500 astéroïdes menacent potentiellement la Terre, mais des solutions, relevant pour le commun des mortels de la science-fiction, sont envisagées par les experts de l'Agence spatiale européenne (ESA), réunis cette semaine à Frascati, près de Rome.

    "Nous avons environ 500 "Objets proches de la Terre" (Near Earth Objects - NEO) identifiés qui pourraient, dans un délai de 100 ans, éventuellement toucher la Terre, même si la probabilité est très faible, dans certains cas de 1 sur 1 million", explique Detlef Koschny, chef de secteur NEO à l'ESA. "Nous suivons leurs trajectoires, nous essayons de prévoir ce qu'elles pourraient être et si elles représentent éventuellement un risque", explique-t-il depuis le centre opérationnel des NEO, au cœur du grand campus abritant le centre de recherches sur la Terre de l'ESA, dont le siège est à Frascati. "En cas de danger réel, nous avons deux solutions actuellement envisageables", poursuit l'expert. "La première est "l'accident de circulation cosmique"", dit-il. "Imaginez un véhicule, qui est l'astéroïde, puis un autre véhicule, qui est notre outil, qui le tamponne et le repousse de sa trajectoire. A force de le repousser petit à petit, on parviendrait probablement à le dévier de la Terre", dit-il. "La deuxième solution est de détruire l'astéroïde à l'aide d'une explosion nucléaire", ajoute M.

  5. US Envoy Hails India's Decision to Taper Use of Greenhouse Gas ...

    India's surprise decision to agree to phase down the use of a potent greenhouse gas after years of opposition is a "significant step'' toward global action to address climate change, the U.S. State Department's climate change envoy said Friday.

    India on Thursday proposed an amendment to the United Nations' Montreal Protocol, which calls on countries to phase out their use of HFCs — gases used in refrigerators, air conditioners and insulating foams that are a highly potent form of greenhouse gas emissions.

    India's amendment calls for a 15-year transition period for developing countries to phase down their use of HFCs in appliances.

    For years, India has opposed a phase-out of HFCs under the protocol, which focuses on curbing the use of ozone-depleting substances. It has argued HFCs should be handled instead under the Kyoto Protocol, which places the responsibility only on developed countries to make greenhouse gas

  6. California gas pipeline explosion, fire injure up to 15 people ...

    A construction crew on Friday accidentally ruptured a natural gas transmission line in Fresno, California, sparking an explosion and fire that injured up to 15 people, four of them critically, officials said.

    The 12-inch pipeline, belonging to Pacific Gas & Electric Corp, was struck by a backhoe near state Highway 99, unleashing a fireball that injured members of the construction team and a jail inmate crew nearby, Fresno Fire Department spokesman Peter Martinez said.

    The accident forced closure of the highway in both directions, along with an adjacent railroad line, Martinez said. Rail traffic was halted to check for possible damage to a railway bridge over a river, he said.

  7. Αποστολή στον Άρη με κόστος 15 εκατ. ετοιμάζει η Ρωσία...

    Περίπου 776 εκατομμύρια ρούβλια (δηλαδή περίπου 15 εκατομμύρια δολάρια με την τρέχουσα συναλλαγματική ισοτιμία) ετοιμάζεται να ξοδέψει η Ρωσία για την προετοιμασία και την έναρξη της αποστολής ExoMars από κοινού με την Ευρωπαϊκή Υπηρεσία Διαστήματος, ανακοίνωσε η ρωσική διαστημική υπηρεσία Roscosmos.

    «Η τιμή της κρατικής σύμβασης ορίζεται σε 776.300.000 ρούβλια», δήλωσε ο οργανισμός. Έχει προγραμματιστεί να δαπανήσει 239.900.000 ρούβλια ( 4.6 εκατ. δολάρια) το 2015 και τα υπόλοιπα 536,4 εκατομμύρια ρούβλια (10,3 εκατομμύρια δολάρια) το 2016.

    Η αποστολή ExoMars Gas Orbiter έχει προγραμματιστεί να εκτοξευθεί στον πύραυλο μεταφορέα Proton-M από το κοσμοδρόμιο του Μπαϊκονούρ, τον Ιανουάριο του

  8. Two ships run aground in Suez Canal, delaying traffic...

    A container ship ran aground in Egypt's Suez Canal in dense mist on Saturday morning, the canal authority said, delaying traffic through a vital global trade route for several hours.

    A Maersk Line spokesman told Reuters the Danish-flagged Susan Maersk sustained no damage or casualties when it ran onto a sand bank while heading north. He said the vessel remained seaworthy and was waiting to be pulled off the sand.

    Sources in the canal authority said another ship in the same convoy, the Liberian-flagged Margaret Oldendorff, had also ran aground. The two incidents delayed traffic for several hours, they said.

    Other sources in the authority had earlier said that the two ships had collided, leading to a small puncture in the Margaret Oldendorff above the water's surface which did not prevent it from continuing its journey.

    Reuters was not immediately able to reach that ship's operator for

  9. Earthquake M 4.6 - SOUTHERN GREECE - 91 km SE of Sparta - local time: 19:46....

    Magnitude M 4.6
    Date time 2015-04-18 16:46:49.7 UTC
    Location 36.49 N ; 23.15 E
    Depth 13 km

    173 km S of Athens, Greece / pop: 729,137 / local time: 19:46:49.7 2015-04-18
    132 km SE of Trípoli, Greece / pop: 26,561 / local time: 19:46:49.7 2015-04-18
    91 km SE of Sparta, Greece / pop: 15,497 / local time: 19:46:49.7 2015-04-18
    24 km SE of Géfyra, Greece / pop: 1,465 / local time: 19:46:49.7 2015-04-18

    1. Σεισμική δόνηση 4,7 βαθμών της κλίμακας Ρίχτερ σημειώθηκε στη θαλάσσια περιοχή ανοιχτά της Νεάπολης Λακωνίας στις 19.46 το βράδυ του Σαββάτου...

      Σύμφωνα με την αυτόματη λύση του Γεωδυναμικού Ινστιτούτου του Εθνικού Αστεροσκοπείου Αθηνών, το εστιακό βάθος υπολογίστηκε στα 5 χλμ.

      Κάτοικοι του Γυθείου επικοινώνησαν με το και τόνισαν ότι ταρακουνήθαν αρκετά.

  10. La Russie construira sa nouvelle station orbitale à partir de fragments de l'ISS...

    Selon un responsable de l'Agence fédérale spatiale russe (Roskosmos), Moscou peur construire sa future station spatiale à partir de modules de l'ISS après 2024.
    La Russie peut construire sa nouvelle station spatiale sur la base de trois modules en voie de construction pour la Station spatiale internationale (ISS), a annoncé Iouri Koptev, directeur du conseil scientifique et technique de l'Agence fédérale spatiale russe (Roskosmos).

    "Le programme fédéral spatial russe prévoit la possibilité de créer une station orbitale russe après 2024 sur la base de trois modules de la Station spatiale internationale. Nous pouvons construire une station orbitale nationale sur la base de trois modules qui seront arrimés à l'ISS après 2017. Ce sont le module scientifique polyvalent MLM, le Module UM et le Module scientifique et d'énergie NEM. Les entreprises de Roskosmos sont en train de fabriquer ces modules pour élargir le segment russe de l'ISS", a indiqué M.Koptev au journal Izvestia........

  11. Magnitude 6.8 earthquake strikes off Japan's Okinawa...

    School children were evacuated to higher ground on some islands and buildings swayed in Taipei after a strong earthquake struck Monday in seas east of Taiwan and south of Okinawa.
    Japan's Meteorological Agency issued an advisory for a tsunami of up to 1 metre, but it was cancelled just over an hour later. The public broadcaster NHK said there were no initial reports of damage.
    The epicenter of the magnitude 6.8 quake was at a shallow point near the Yonaguni islands, the agency said. It said no tsunami was detected.
    Television footage of the area showed calm seas, but as a precaution school children in some low-lying areas of islands in the area were evacuated to safer locations.
    In Taiwan's capital, Taipei, CCTV footage from a television broadcaster, TBS, showed signs and lights swinging from the ceiling of a newsroom, and some residents rushing into the streets after the quake struck.

  12. A tsunami as large as one metre was reportedly forecast to hit islands in Japan's far south on Monday after a 6.6-magnitude earthquake struck off eastern Taiwan...

    National broadcaster NHK said waves were possible on several islands in the southern Okinawa chain after a very shallow quake centred on Yonaguni in the southwest, near Taiwan.
    Witnesses said buildings swayed in Taipei but there was no visible damage in the Taiwan capital.
    "We are issuing warnings via the radio," Satoshi Shimoji of Japan's Miyako City government told NHK.
    "We want residents to get as far as possible from the sea," he said.
    NHK said the tsunami - an irregular wave that alters the sea level and not necessarily a huge event - is believed to have already arrived at remote Yonaguni, although no details were yet available.
    Live footage from coastal cameras showed sea levels had apparently not risen in several harbours within the warning

  13. Conférence moConférence mondiale sur le climat : un accord n'est pas garanti, selon Hollande...

    Le président de la République, qui clôturait lundi une conférence sur la "croissance verte", a mis en avant des "obstacles", notamment financiers.
    La Cop 21 ne se fera pas sans embûches, a averti lundi François Hollande. La France accueillera du 30 novembre au 11 décembre prochains la 21e Conférence des parties de la Convention-cadre des Nations unies sur les changements climatiques (Cop 21), qu'elle espère voir déboucher sur un accord universel et contraignant visant à maintenir le réchauffement en deçà de 2°C.
    François Hollande a déclaré lundi qu'un accord mondial à l'issue de cette conférence n'était pas garanti, notamment en raison des obstacles financiers. "Chacun pense que ce sera une réunion où nous trouverons facilement un accord. Je ne le pense pas", a déclaré le président dans un discours en clôture d'une conférence sur la "croissance verte" réunie à l'Elysé

  14. Gazprom CEO Alexei Miller will pay a working visit to Greece on Tuesday, company spokesman Sergei Kupriyanov said Monday...

    During the visit, Miller is expected to meet with Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras.
    After Tsipras's visit to Moscow last week, Russian President Vladimir Putin said that joint projects could become a financial lifeline for Greece, a country with heavy debts to the international community. One such project is Russia's new Turkish Stream gas pipeline that could turn Greece into a gas hub for Europe.
    On Friday, German newspaper Der Spiegel reported that Athens and Moscow would soon sign a bilateral agreement stipulating a Russian prepayment of 3-5 billion euro [$3.2-$5.3 billion] for a gas pipeline from Turkey. The report was rejected by Kremlin.
    The Turkish Stream is set to have an annual capacity of 63 billion cubic meters of gas. Turkey would use around one fifth of the volume, and the rest would be pumped to a hub on the Turkish-Greece border for European Union customers....

    1. Στην Αθήνα ο επικεφαλής της Gazprom Αλεξέι Μίλερ...

      Οι ενεργειακές σχέσεις Ελλάδας - Ρωσίας, με επίκεντρο τον αγωγό φυσικού αερίου που θα μεταφέρει ρωσικό αέριο από τα ελληνοτουρκικά σύνορα προς την Κεντρική Ευρώπη, μέσω Ελλάδας, θα βρεθούν στο επίκεντρο των συζητήσεων που θα έχει στην Αθήνα σήμερα Τρίτη ο επικεφαλής της Gazprom Αλεξέι Μίλερ.

      Ο κ. Μίλερ πρόκειται να συναντηθεί στις 4 το απόγευμα με τον πρωθυπουργό Αλέξη Τσίπρα ενώ θα προηγηθεί, στις 2 το μεσημέρι, συνάντηση με τον υπουργό Παραγωγικής Ανασυγκρότησης, Περιβάλλοντος και Ενέργειας Παναγιώτη Λαφαζάνη.

      Ο νέος αγωγός, σύμφωνα με τον υπάρχοντα σχεδιασμό, αποτελεί συνέχεια του λεγόμενου Turkish Stream που ξεκινά από τα ρωσικά παράλια της Μαύρης Θάλασσας και καταλήγει στα ελληνοτουρκικά σύνορα και αποσκοπεί στην τροφοδοσία της ευρωπαϊκής αγοράς με παράκαμψη της Ουκρανίας. Η επένδυση για το ελληνικό τμήμα του αγωγού, από τα ελληνοτουρκικά σύνορα έως την ΠΓΔΜ εκτιμάται σε 2 δισ. ευρώ ενώ στα οφέλη για την ελληνική πλευρά περιλαμβάνονται η βελτίωση της ασφάλειας εφοδιασμού, η αύξηση του ανταγωνισμού στην αγορά φυσικού αερίου, η δημιουργία θέσεων εργασίας και η γεωπολιτική αναβάθμιση της χώρας.

      Στο πλαίσιο των συζητήσεων αναμένεται να τεθεί και η τρέχουσα σύμβαση προμήθειας φυσικού αερίου από την

  15. EU to charge Russia's Gazprom with market abuse...

    (Reuters) - The European Union will launch a legal attack on Russian gas giant Gazprom (GAZP.MM) this week, ramping up tensions with Moscow, when antitrust agents will accuse it of overcharging buyers in eastern Europe, EU sources told Reuters on Monday.

    Russia's state-controlled biggest company, a vital supplier of energy to Europe despite frequent political disputes, could receive a full charge sheet from European Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager on Wednesday, one source said.

    More than two years after Brussels started investigating Gazprom, the move comes just a week after the new EU antitrust chief charged U.S. tech giant Google (GOOGL.O) with abusing its market power after five years of hesitation by her predecessor.

    Vestager seems determined to challenge big corporate powers since taking on the internationally powerful post in November, despite past offers of compromise from both Google and

  16. Fierce storm lashes southeast Australia; 3 feared dead...

    A fierce storm lashing Australia's southeast destroyed homes, left dozens stranded in swirling floodwaters and may have led to the deaths of three people, officials said Tuesday.

    The storm, which has been pounding Sydney and other parts of New South Wales state since Monday, has dumped more than 30 centimeters (a foot) of rain in some areas, with wind gusts more than 100 kilometers (60 miles) per hour.

    People were trapped in cars and homes and stuck on rooftops amid flash flooding. Emergency officials received 4,500 calls for help and rescued nearly 50 people from floodwaters, New South Wales premier Mike Baird said.

    The worst-hit area was the town of Dungog, about 200 kilometers (125 miles) north of Sydney, where three people were found dead and at least one home was swept away.

    Police said they were trying to determine how the two men and one woman

  17. Japan train sets new speed record...

    A Japanese magnetic levitation train has broken its own world speed record, hitting 603km/h (374mph) in a test run near Mount Fuji.

    The train beat the 590km/h speed it had set last week in another test.

    Maglev trains use electrically charged magnets to lift and move carriages above the rail tracks.

    Central Japan Railway (JR Central), which owns the trains, wants to introduce the service between Tokyo and the central city of Nagoya by 2027.

    The 280km journey would take only about 40 minutes, less than half the current time.

    However, passengers will not get to experience the maglev's record-breaking speeds because the company said its trains will operate at a maximum of 505km/h. In comparison, the fastest operating speed of a Japanese shinkansen, or "bullet train" is is 320km/

  18. Outage hits pumps at Fukushima plant; toxic water leaks into ocean...

    Tokyo Electric Power Co. on Tuesday reported that a power outage has shut down all eight water transfer pumps at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power station and that radioactive water is again leaking into the Pacific Ocean.

    The pumps are being used to pump tainted water from a drainage channel to another channel leading to a fence-enclosed artificial bay facing the station. The beleaguered utility said it was checking into what happened and how much water had leaked.

    The pumping had begun last Friday, in response to a finding in late February that highly radioactive water in the channel was reaching the ocean. They were confirmed to be working Monday afternoon but found stopped at 8:45 a.m. Tuesday.

    The utility said earlier this year that water samples from the drainage channel last May contained concentrations of radioactive materials that surpassed the legal

    1. Pumps at Fukushima plant halted, toxic water leaking into ocean - TEPCO...

      All the eight water transfer pumps at the Fukushima 1 nuclear power station have been shut down due to a power outage, leading to a leak of radioactive water into the Pacific Ocean, the plant’s operator said.

      Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO) reported a power outage on Tuesday, according to Kyodo news agency. It follows the line of the toxic leaks that were reported in February, when at one point around 100 tons of highly radioactive water leaked from one the plant’s

  19. Des dizaines d'oeufs de dinosaures retrouvés sur un chantier en Chine...

    La ville chinoise de Heyuan, qui détenait déjà le record du monde du plus grand nombre d'oeufs de dinosaures retrouvés sur son territoire, a encore agrandi sa collection après la découverte de dizaines d'autres oeufs sur un chantier, a rapporté mercredi l'agence de presse officielle Xinhua. Sur les 43 oeufs de dinosaures retrouvés dimanche dans le nid, 19 sont intacts, a indiqué Du Yanli, le conservateur du musée de Heyuan, commune située dans la province de Guangdong (sud), qui ne sait toutefois pas de quelle espèce ces oeufs sont issus. "Ces oeufs sont gros, l'un d'eux avait même un diamètre de 13 centimètres", a expliqué M. Du à l'agence Xinhua lundi dernier. Tous les oeufs ont été envoyés au musée pour les préserver et les examiner. Près de 17.000 oeufs de dinosaures ont déjà été retrouvés sur la commune de Heyuan depuis

  20. Evacuation as Calbuco volcano erupts in Chile...

    The Calbuco volcano in southern Chile has erupted for the first time in more than four decades, sending a plume of smoke and ash several kilometres high.

    Emergency services declared a red alert and about 1,500 people were evacuated from a 20km (12 mile) radius as a precaution, authorities said.

    The nearby city of Puerto Montt has already been blanketed in a cloud of ash.

    Mayor Gervoy Paredes said residents were "very, very frightened".

    Neighbouring Argentina also put emergency measures in place for the city of Bariloche - about 100km from Calbuco - where ash clouds were expected.

    Residents there have been warned to stay indoors.

    Authorities said no hot rocks or lava had been seen so far, only ash. However, experts warned that local rivers could be flooded by melting snow and

  21. Tocosh, la milenaria penicilina natural de los Andes que no pasa de moda en Perú ...

    El tocosh, producto de conserva preparado a partir de la papa andina data de la época pre inca, y por sus beneficios nutricionales y medicinales se la conoce como la "penicilina natural del Perú".

    "[El tocosh] es una creación nuestra, es una biotecnología que hemos heredado de nuestros antepasados", señaló a RPP Noticias el doctor Alberto Salazar Granara, integrante del Centro de Investigación de Medicina Tradicional y Farmacología.

    El tocosh es bueno para el sistema inmunológico y el tratamiento de problemas gastrointestinales, osteoporosis, afecciones respiratorias y otras enfermedades. Este tesoro natural de Perú aporta grandes cantidades de carbohidratos y también aceites polisaturados buenos para la salud.

    El olor penetrante de la "penicilina natural del Perú" se debe al proceso de fermentación de la papa, que es colocada durante unos 6 meses en un pozo profundo de entre 2 y 6 metros cerca de un riachuelo. El médico explicó que gracias a la fermentación se genera la presencia de "antibióticos naturales".

  22. Russia’s Gazprom to participate in joint field development in Argentina...

    Russia’s gas giant Gzprom may participate in the joint development of natural gas fields in Argentina, President Vladimir Putin said Thursday.

    "Gazprom is involved in preparation of a general scheme of Argentina’s gas sector development and considers the possibility of joint hydrocarbon field development in Argentina," President said.

    He added that Russia’s Uralmash plans to set up a joint venture with Argentinian partners on the production of oil equipment in the country.

  23. Tokyo finds high levels of radiation in children's park...

    Authorities in the Japanese capital have cordoned off a playground where high levels of radiation were detected this week, reviving concerns about nuclear contamination four years after the Fukushima disaster.

    Nuclear regulators measured elevated radiation levels on Thursday in a children's park in central Tokyo, city officials said, more than 250 km (155 miles) from the crippled Fukushima nuclear plant in northeast Japan.

    One area of the park registered 480 microsieverts per hour, or nearly half the recommended annual limit of exposure.

    That compares with radiation levels ranging from 0.7 to 23.2 microsieverts per hour measured this month in the air in Okuma, a town less than 20 km from the Fukushima plant.

    It was not immediately clear why radiation levels were high in the park, which opened two years after the 2011 disaster. It has now been fenced off with an orange barricade, the city said.

    "We are still checking what caused these elevated radiation levels and what type of radioactive substance it is," said park representative Kyoko Tsujimura, adding that radiation elsewhere in the park remained

    1. An unusually high level of radiation was recorded in a Tokyo park Thursday afternoon...

      A high level of radiation was detected at a Tokyo park, the Toshima Ward Office said Thursday, according to the Japan Times.

      The incident caused speculations that hazardous materials were buried in the area. The ward office banned access to the park, which is in Ikebukuro area.

      The radiation level was over 480 microsieverts per hour, recorded on a sport near a playground Thursday afternoon, the municipality said.

      The park was opened in March 2013. Previously, the area was used as a parking space for garbage collection vehicles.

    2. Park in Ikebukuro closed after hot spot detected in playground...

      An unusually high level of radiation has been detected at a park in Tokyo’s Ikebukuro area, the Toshima Ward Office said Thursday, prompting speculation that hazardous material has been buried there.

      The ward office has banned entry to the municipal park, which is right next to Tobu Railway Co.’s Shimoitabashi Station in the Ikebukuro-honcho district and surrounded by residences.

      The name of the park is Ikebukuro Honcho Densha no Mieru Koen.

      On Thursday afternoon, a radiation level of up to 480 microsieverts per hour was recorded at a spot on the ground near playground equipment, the municipality said.

      That is nearly half the permitted annual dose of 1 millisievert and far in excess of the ward’s decontamination standard of 0.23 microsievert.

      “Because the area in which we detect radioactivity is very limited, and readings in the surrounding areas are normal, we suspect radioactive materials of some kind are buried there,” Toshima Mayor Yukio Takano said in a statement.........Kyodo

  24. L’UE autorise la commercialisation de 19 OGM...

    Onze sont produits par la firme américaine Monsanto, les huit autres sont des produits de la firme américaine Dupont et des groupes allemands Bayer et BASF

    L’Union européenne a autorisé vendredi l’importation et la commercialisation de 19 OGM, parmi lesquels 11 produits de la multinationale américaine Monsanto -plusieurs variétés de soja, maïs, colza et coton-. Les huit autres sont des produits de la firme américaine Dupont et des groupes allemands Bayer et BASF. Dix-sept de ces OGM sont destinés à l’alimentation animale et humaine, deux sont des fleurs coupées. « L’innocuité de tous les OGM approuvés aujourd’hui a été établie avant leur mise sur le marché dans l’Union », veut rassurer la Commission européenne dans un communiqué

  25. Les cendres du volcan Calbuco, brusquement réveillé par une double éruption, recouvraient vendredi les régions touristiques du sud du Chili et de l'Argentine, entraînant l'annulation de vols internationaux au départ et à l'arrivée de Buenos Aires...

    Une épaisse fumée blanche s'échappait vendredi du volcan Calbuco dans le sud du Chili, presque deux jours après sa double éruption, son nuage de cendres touchant les pays voisins dont l'Argentine, qui a vu son trafic aérien perturbé.

    Apparue dans la matinée, la colonne de fumée, immense, a redoublé les craintes d'une troisième éruption du volcan, situé sur la côte Pacifique, à 1.300 kilomètres au sud de

  26. "En la Tierra está sucediendo algo colosal" ...

    Últimamente se registran en diferentes partes del mundo varios cataclismos ambientales. El más reciente ocurrió en Nepal y la India, donde un devastador sismo se cobró la vida de centenares de personas. Según Dominique Bourg, experto en la protección del clima, la gente, al cambiar el medio ambiente cambia la vida de toda la humanidad.

    Durante una conferencia que brindó Dominique Bourg, filósofo francés, profesor de la Universidad de Lausana y experto en protección del clima, habló sobre el antropoceno, un nuevo periodo geológico también conocido como 'la edad del hombre', que se caracteriza por un aumento del dióxido de carbono. En ese sentido, recordó que el antropoceno continúa y que "cada década estamos viendo algo nuevo".............

  27. Windstorm, Heavy Rains Kill 25 People in Pakistan’s Peshawar...

    According to Afridi, strong winds and heavy rain destroyed the roofs and the walls of several clay houses in the suburbs of Peshawar. Wind tore the trees out of the ground in some areas.

    The injured, including women and children, were hospitalized. Search and rescue operations, which are currently hampered by heavy rain, are continuing in the disaster area, the channel said.

    Geo TV warned that more heavy rains with windstorm could take place in Malakand, Hazara and Peshawar within the next 24 hours, according to the Meteorological Department.

    1. At least 20 people were killed and around 100 injured Sunday after heavy rain and flooding in Pakistan's northwest city of Peshawar caused dozens of buildings to collapse, senior police official Mian Syed told AFP...

      Riaz Khan Mehsud, a senior local government official, confirmed the toll and said the number of dead was expected to rise.

    2. Pakistan 'mini-cyclone' death toll rises to 44: officials...

      A severe storm in northwest Pakistan, dubbed a "mini-cyclone," has killed 44 people and injured more than 200, officials said Monday, raising their previous death toll.

      Intense rain and strong winds buffeted the city of Peshawar and adjacent districts late Sunday, felling trees, causing dozens of roofs and walls to collapse and blocking many roads.

      The injured include nearly 100 children, according to officials, while farmers have seen their produce badly affected.

      "At least 44 people have been killed and 202 wounded. The storm followed by heavy rain and hailstorm has severely damaged wheat crops and orchards," Provincial Information Minister Mushtaq Ghani told

  28. Wildfire-hit area in Russia’s Siberia continues to grow...

    Strong winds have increased the forest fire spread in Russia’s Siberia, including in Buryatia where the area hit by blaze has grown from 68 hectares to 5,000 hectares and in the Trans-Baikal Territory, where fires are burning the area of 172,000 hectares.

    The main cause of the disaster is human factor, local forestry department officials say. The fires were started when the farmers began burning the dry grass in their fields.

    Since mid-April, a state of emergency has been declared in the forests of Buryatia, except for two northern districts. In the Trans-Baikal Territory, which has been hit by the disaster from March 19, there are now a total of 60 forest fires.

    The fire-fighting effort involves 1,500 people, including 481 paratroopers. The fire has destroyed more than 200 houses in 18 settlements of the region. Four people died and another 813 have been injured.

  29. Quake warnings of minutes, not hours, are possible, but pricey...

    Nepal's record of earthquakes dates to at least the 13th century, with significant temblors striking every 75 years or so. And through all that time, in Nepal as in most seismically active areas, there has been one constant: people in the path of destruction have had no idea when the shaking would start.

    Even after decades of research, "our ability to predict earthquakes is still non-existent," said seismologist Peggy Hellweg, of the Berkeley Seismological Laboratory at the University of California, Berkeley.

    The area around Kathmandu suffered damaging quakes in 1934 and 1988, but when disaster experts met in Nepal's capital earlier this month, all they could forecast was that the next one would probably come in the next couple of decades.

    Policy makers have, in at least one case, reacted harshly to seismologists' limited foresight. In 2012, an Italian court found six scientists guilty of manslaughter because they failed to predict and warn residents in advance of the 2009 L'Aquila earthquake, which was preceded by months of minor rumblings and killed just over 300 people. The verdict was overturned in 2014.

    But if predictions, meaning alerts days or weeks ahead, are still a distant goal, progress has been made on early warnings of earthquakes, giving precious seconds that can save lives. But the world is divided into haves and

  30. Ψήλωσαν τα Ιμαλάια από τον ισχυρό σεισμό στο Νεπάλ...

    «Ψήλωσαν» τα ...Ιμαλάια από τον μεγάλο σεισμό των 7,9 βαθμών Ρίχτερ που έπληξε το Νεπάλ το περασμένο Σάββατο. Σύμφωνα με τον ομότιμο καθηγητή Γεωφυσικής στο ΑΠΘ, Βασίλη Παπαζάχο, το γεωλογικό αυτό φαινόμενο εξελίσσεται εδώ εκατομμύρια χρόνια και οφείλεται στη σύγκρουση δύο πλακών - της Ινδικής με την Ασιατική.

    Οπως εξήγησε ο κ.Παπαζάχος, μιλώντας στο Αθηναϊκό πρακτορείο, με απλά λόγια, η Ινδία «σπρώχνει», προς τα επάνω και «συμπιέζει» την υπόλοιπη Ασία, η οποία μετατοπίζεται με τη σειρά της, ετησίως, κατά 10 εκατοστά περίπου, με αποτέλεσμα να αυξάνεται, αντίστοιχα, κατά μερικά εκατοστά και το υψόμετρο των Ιμαλαΐων.

    «Οι συγκλίσεις και οι συγκρούσεις των δύο αυτών πλακών είναι πολύ μεγάλες, και κατά συνέπεια στην περιοχή αυτή σημειώνονται πολύ μεγάλοι, σε μέγεθος, σεισμοί. Στο Αιγαίο, για παράδειγμα, η αφρικανική πλάκα συγκρούεται με την ευρασιατική και βυθίζεται κατά 4 περίπου εκατοστά το χρόνο, ενώ στην περίπτωση του Νεπάλ ξεπερνά τα 10 εκατοστά», υπογραμμίζει ο κ. Παπαζάχος

  31. 52 missing feared dead in Afghanistan landslide: Officials...

    At least 52 people are missing, feared dead after a landslide swept through a village in Afghanistan's remote mountainous northeast on Tuesday, officials said.

    At least 25 women and 22 children are among those missing in the landslide in Khwahan district of Badakhshan province, deputy provincial governor Gul Mohammad Beidar said.

    "We have asked Kabul for help and they have said they are sending two helicopters to assist with the rescue operations," Beidar told AFP.

    "This is a remote area on the border with Tajikistan and the road to this district remains closed for six months of the year," he added, highlighting the challenges facing the relief effort..........afp....

  32. Un sismo de magnitud de 5,8 ha sacudido el suroeste de Ecuador, según el Instituto Geofísico de Ecuador.

    Magnitude mb 5.3
    Date time 2015-04-28 11:19:52.8 UTC
    Location 2.06 S ; 79.67 W
    Depth 100 km
    Distances 28 km NE of Guayaquil, Ecuador / pop: 1,952,029 / local time: 06:19:52.8 2015-04-28
    6 km N of Yaguachi, Ecuador / pop: 27,947 / local time: 06:19:52.8 2015-04-28

    1. El epicentro se ubica a una profundidad de 71 kilómetros....

      El Servicio Geológico de EE.UU. sitúa la magnitud del fenómeno en 5,3.

      Testigos reportaron un fuerte temblor en la ciudad de Guayaquil. El movimiento sísmico también se sintió en Durán, Riobamba, Quito y Bahía de Caráquez, según reportes en redes sociales......

  33. Russian officials said Tuesday an unmanned Progress spacecraft carrying supplies to the International Space Station had suffered a glitch, after a successful launch earlier in the day...

    "The ship reached orbit but the full volume of telemetry (data transmissions) is not being received," a spokesman for the mission control told AFP.

    As a result, the controllers had opted to change the flight plan and extend the vessel's journey to two days instead of six hours, he added.

    A Soyuz rocket carrying the Progress M-27M supply craft launched successfully from Russia's Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan earlier Tuesday.

  34. Les glissements de terrain, le nouveau danger qui menace le Népal...

    Alors que le bilan du séisme qui a frappé samedi le Népal pourrait atteindre 10 000 morts selon les autorités, un nouveau danger menace le pays : les glissements de terrain avec le risque de voir des camps de réfugiés engloutis par la terre.

    Le dernier bilan provisoire du tremblement de terre est aujourd'hui passé à plus de 4300 morts et 8000 blessés. Et selon le Premier ministre népalais, il pourrait atteindre les 10 000 victimes.

    Si tout le monde se mobilise, l'arrivée des secours reste compliquée, dans la capitale, Katmandou, mais surtout dans le pays où de nombreuses vallées et villages demeurent difficilement inaccessibles.

    Or, un nouveau danger menace ces vallées. Un tremblement de terre peut aussi à court terme accélérer des glissements de terrain. La terre pourrait alors engloutir des camps de réfugié

  35. Συναγερμός από πυρκαγιά κοντά στο Τσερνόμπιλ...

    Δασική πυρκαγιά στη βόρεια Ουκρανία απειλεί σήμερα να επεκταθεί προς τον εγκαταλειμμένο πυρηνικό σταθμό του Τσερνόμπιλ, αναφέρει σε καταχώρισή του στο Facebook ο υπουργός Εσωτερικών Αρσέν Αβάκοφ.

    "Στις 18:30 (τοπική ώρα και ώρα Ελλάδας) κλιμακώθηκε η κατάσταση με τη δασική πυρκαγιά γύρω από το σταθμό του Τσερνόμπιλ. Οι φλόγες κατέκαψαν για μια ακόμη φορά το δάσος προς την κατεύθυνση του σταθμού του Τσερνόμπιλ. Η φωτιά στις κορυφές των δένδρων και οι ισχυρές ριπές ανέμου απειλούν σοβαρά να επεκτείνουν την πυρκαγιά στη ζώνη των 20 χλμ. γύρω από το σταθμό", ανέφερε ο υπουργός.

    Το 1986 μια πυρκαγιά σε αντιδραστήρα προκάλεσε έκρηξη στο Τσερνόμπιλ, με αποτέλεσμα τη χειρότερη πυρηνική καταστροφή στον κόσμο. Ραδιενεργά υλικά παραμένουν στον σταθμό, καλυμμένα από μια τσιμεντένια σαρκοφάγο που οι ουκρανικές αρχές σχεδιάζουν να αντικαταστήσουν το 2016.

    1. Ukraine: incendie de forêt près de Tchernobyl, "pas de danger"...

      Un incendie de forêt s'est déclaré mardi en Ukraine à proximité de la centrale de Tchernobyl, théâtre de la pire catastrophe du nucléaire civil, en 1986, ont indiqué des responsables du service d'Etat des Situations d'urgence.

      "Le feu est à 15-20 kilomètres", a précisé à l'AFP une porte-parole du site, Maïa Roudenko, ajoutant qu'il n'y a "aucun problème là-bas".

      Selon le service d'Etat des situations d'urgence, l'incendie s'est déclaré en début d'après-midi heure locale (vers 09H15 GMT), se propageant sur plusieurs centaines d'hectares.

      Mais plusieurs heures plus tard il n'était toujours pas maîtrisé malgré l'envoi de près de 200 hommes, de plusieurs véhicules d'urgence, un hélicoptère et deux avions An-32.

      Néanmoins le chef des services des Situations d'urgence, Zorian Chkiriaka, a affirmé que "la situation est sous contrôle", sur sa page

  36. Earthquake-hit Nepal at high risk of landslides in coming weeks, scientists warn..

    The threat of landslides and mudslides remains high in the earthquake-hit Nepal in the coming weeks, and the risk is likely to increase when the monsoon rains arrive this summer, scientists have warned.

    The region at highest risk for landslides and mudslides is the mountainous area along the Nepal-Tibet border, north of Kathmandu and west of Mount Everest, directly above the fault rupture, according to researchers at the University of Michigan (UM).

    UM geomorphologist Marin Clark and two colleagues have assessed the landslide hazard in Nepal following Saturday's 7.9-magnitude earthquake....

  37. China builds 57-storey skyscraper in 19 days...

    A Chinese construction company is claiming to be the world's fastest builder after erecting a 57-storey skyscraper in 19 working days in central China.

    The Broad Sustainable Building Co put up the rectangular, glass-and-steel Mini Sky City in the Hunan provincial capital of Changsha using a modular method, assembling three floors per day, company vice president Xiao Changgeng said.

    The company, which has ambitions to assemble the world's tallest skyscraper at 220 floors in only three months, worked on Mini Sky City in two spurts separated by winter weather. Its time-lapse video of the rapid assembly has become popular on Chinese video-sharing sites since it was first uploaded on YouTube.

    "With the traditional method, they have to build a skyscraper brick by brick, but with our method, we just need to assemble the blocks," company engineer Chen Xiangqian said.....AP.....

  38. NASA spacecraft to slam into Mercury on Thursday...

    NASA's Mercury-orbiting spacecraft, Messenger, is going out with a bang this week, adding a hefty crater to the little planet closest to the sun.

    The first spacecraft to circle Mercury, Messenger is expected to slip out of orbit and slam into Mercury on Thursday following a successful four-year tour of the rocky planet. The spacecraft will be travelling 14,081 kph when it hits, fast enough to carve out a crater 16 metres wide. The spacecraft itself stretches 3 metres solar wingtip to wingtip.

    Messenger has run out of fuel, but ground controllers managed in recent weeks to eke out some extra life, raising Messenger's orbit by dipping into helium gas reserves not originally intended for use as fuel. But now that's all gone and Messenger is at the mercy of

  39. Pollution de l'air : l'UE menace la France de poursuites judiciaires...

    La pollution aux particules fines en France est trop élevée, selon l'Union européenne, qui a rappelé Paris à l'ordre mercredi. Si la France ne réagit pas dans les deux mois, elle risque d'être poursuivie devant la Cour de justice européenne.

    La Commission européenne a menacé la France, mercredi 29 avril, d'un renvoi en justice si elle ne prenait pas des "mesures ambitieuses, rapides et efficaces" pour limiter la pollution aux particules fines dans dix agglomérations, dont Paris, Lyon et Grenoble, et ce, dans un délai de deux mois.

    "Les chiffres des autorités françaises les plus récents montrent que le problème de pollution de l'air persiste et que les limites maximales journalières pour ces particules sont dépassées dans 10 zones : Paris, Lyon, Grenoble, Marseille, Martinique, Rhône-Alpes (Vallée de l'Arve), PACA-ZUR (Zone urbaine régionale), Nice, Toulon, Douai-Béthune-Valenciennes", selon la Commission européenne.

    "La Commission européenne a demandé à la France de respecter la législation de l'UE exigeant que les États membres limitent l'exposition de leurs citoyens aux particules fines", a-t-elle indiqué dans un communiqué

  40. Chinese scientists discover 'batman dinosaur' ..

    Chinese scientists have discovered a "batman dinosaur" – a small dinosaur that lived 160 million years ago and had featherless wings like bats.

    The research, conducted by scientists from the Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology in Beijing as well as Linyi University in Shandong Province, was published by Nature magazine on Friday.

    Scientists restructured the image of the small dinosaur named "Qiyi", which means fantastic wing in English, after scanning a specimen with CT devices and electron microscopy.

    Qiyi has a unique look with stubby head, long fingers and threadlike feather, which is quite different from the feather of any existing bird.

    The most eye-catching feature of Qiyi is a rod-like bone, a wrist commonly found with flying tetrapods like bats, but had never been found on dinosaur


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