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Encephalitis spreads beyond Muzaffarpur: to Vaishali, Samastipur, Sheohar…

  Acute Encephalitis Syndrome : mystery unsolved Patna: Acute Encephalitis Syndrome (AES), so far limited to Muzaffarpur district, has now spread to neighbouring districts of Vaishali, Samastipur, Sitamarhi, Sheohar and East Champaran as 33 cases were reported from these districts recently. Confirming the spread of the disease, Principal Secretary of Health Department, Deepak Kumar, said, “Cases have been reported from adjoining districts of Muzaffarpur. We are providing all facilities for treatment of the ill children.” The spread of AES has put the state government on its toes,... 

Environmental activist Ramesh Agrawal awarded Goldman Environment Prize

  Environmental activist Ramesh Agrawal Environmental activist Ramesh Agrawal, who helped villagers stop a massive coal mining project, is among six people around the world to be awarded the prestigious Goldman Environment Prize, the organisation said. The annual prize honours outstanding grassroots environmentalists for their sustained and significant efforts to protect and enhance the natural environment, often at great personal risk. The individual cash prize of $175,000 makes it the largest award of its kind. “With a small internet cafe as his headquarters, Ramesh Agrawal organised... 

Why ancient Indus Civilizations declined: monsoon cycle stopped for 200 years?

  undeciphered Indus script: stories unread Scientists in the past have explained the decline of Bronze-Age civilizations in Egypt, Greece and Mesopotamia by a long-term drought that began around 2000 BC. Now paleoclimatologists propose that a similar fate was followed by our own Indus Valley Civilization, at about the same time. Based on isotope data from the sediment of an ancient lake, the researchers suggest that the monsoon cycle, which is vital to the livelihood of all of South Asia, essentially stopped there for as long as two centuries. The Indus Valley, in present Pakistan and northwest... 

Post–Phailin, Bihar faces heavy rains, floods, Dussehra washout!

  2013 Bihar rainfall: first scant then too much! Patna: the unceasing rainfall in the aftermath of the cyclone Phailin has created considerable alarm in Bihar. This is apart from the rains having successfully dampened the Durga Pooja festival. Roads in Patna remained largely empty during the peak of the festival, except for those ready to brave the rains – a most unusual sight in Bihar when even walking on the roads can be a difficult task during the pooja. Thousands of vendors of eatables, toys and fancy items who invested in the event are now left with heavy losses. The moderate rains... 

BHU scientists to study climate change impact in South Asian countries

  global warming: time for alarm! Varanasi: In view of the rampant weather change and risk factors involved with it in south Asian countries, researchers at Banaras Hindu University (BHU) are contributing in implementation of the Thimpu Statement on Climate Change in collaboration with United Nations office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) and SAARC Disaster Management Centre (SDMC). RK Mall of Institute of Environment and Sustainable Development, BHU has been given a task to prepare a comprehensive study of the policy, institutional landscape and resource allocation for climate... 

Docu-films on Uranium mining hazards shown in Ranchi

  Jaduguda: affected by Uranium mining! Ranchi: a three-day festival, which kicked off at Central University, Brambe, on Tuesday, travelled to the RIMS campus on Wednesday. Students and teachers of the premier medical college, film lovers and social activists watched six documentaries and short films that highlight the ill effects of uranium mining. The films screened were Michael Madsen’s Into Eternity, Ranchi-based film-maker Sriprakash’s Buddha Weeps in Jadugoda and Jadugoda: The Black Magic, Galina Laskova Sanderson’s (Belarus) To Whom It May Concern, When the Dust Settles by Australian... 

Sunrise in Bihar: Two new solar power projects for Bihar

  Catching the sun power! Schanti Partners, New York Patna: A US-based agency, Schanti Partners, New York, has expressed its keen interest in investing Rs 580 crore for a solar energy project in Kaimur district of Bihar. Initially, a 10MW unit would be set up. The agency has already submitted its proposal to the Bihar State Electricity Board (BSEB) and received approval from the Bihar State Investment Promotion Board as also no-objection letter from Bihar Renewable Energy Development Agency (BREDA). The agency intends to enter into a 25-year Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with BSEB. The proposed... 

Photo Documentary- Making charcoal water filters from Husk

Eklavya Prasad By Eklavya Prasad   Viengphila (La) Vaiyakone is the manager for Namngum Ecovillage and Agriculture Research Community and a trainer for Abundant Water.  She manages the operation in Pakanyung (Name of the province) to support the efforts of AW in filter production. She has been experimenting with various methods and materials to make the burn out material used in the clay/charcoal water filters. La added the updraft tube and the fresh air inlet at the bottom to create the more intense heat allowing the husk to char faster without burning out to ash. Previously, the fire... 

Undergrad Yale researchers find plastic-eating fungus in the Amazon

Undergrad Yale researchers find plastic-eating fungus in the Amazon   Pestalotiopsis microspora New Haven, USA: There’s a course at Yale University in which undergraduates travel to the Amazon rain forest to collect fungi. One of them, however, which will be featured in a paper accepted by a scientific journal, might solve the problem of polyurethane building up in our landfills. The fungus basically eats the plastic and breaks it down into carbon. That’s just one discovery being studied in the Rainforest Expedition and Laboratory course taught by Professor Scott A. Strobel. “We take... 

Farewell Dear Prof. Wangari Muta Maathai!

Farewell Dear Prof. Wangari Muta Maathai! By Dr. Shobha Raghuram   Greenbelt movement logo Farewell Dear Prof. Wangari Muta Maathai—Yesterday in India I heard the news from mutual friends that you have left all of us around the world, your family, your country women and men, thousands of development workers around the world and the women of this earth for whom you worked tirelessly. I can never forget what it was like meeting you…the strength, the dignity and the love you brought to your work, casting hope and clarity of purpose everywhere you went. In a world increasingly careless about... 
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