... We’re trying to harness photosynthesis. A key part of photosynthesis is what happens when the sun goes down. Cells convert CO2 into sugar and fat molecules. And they store the fat to burn as energy to get them through the night ... We’re trying to coax our synthetic cells to ... store far more fat than they actually were designed to do, so that we can harness it all as an energy source and use it to create gasoline, diesel fuel, and jet fuel straight from carbon dioxide and sunlight. This would shift the carbon equation so we’re recycling CO2 instead of taking new carbon out of the ground and creating still more CO2. But it has to be done on a massive scale to have any real impact on the amount of CO2 we’re putting into the atmosphere, let alone recovering from the atmosphere.
... We envision facilities the size of San Francisco. And 10 or 15 of those in this country. We need sunlight, seawater, and non-agricultural land, but you need a lot of photons to drive this. You need a lot of surface area of sunlight to do that. It’s a great use for Arizona. Lots of sunlight there.
... If we can’t get some key scientific breakthroughs within the next couple of years, it probably won’t happen in 10 years. So it’s something that’s really dependent on fundamental science. But we’re already able to do things that were once seen as impossible.
... I think the new anti-intellectualism that’s showing up in politics today is a symptom of our not discussing these issues enough. We don’t discuss how our society is now 100 percent dependent on science for its future. We need new scientific breakthroughs—sometimes to overcome the scientific breakthroughs of the past. A hundred years ago oil sounded like a great discovery. You could burn it and run engines off it. I don’t think anybody anticipated that it would actually change the atmosphere of our planet. Because of that we have to come up with new approaches. We just passed the 7 billion population mark. In 12 years, we’re going to reach 8 billion. If we let things run their natural course, we’ll have massive pandemics, people starving. Without science I don’t see much hope for humanity.
GOP Anti-vaxxer: Rep. Barry Loudermilk, a Georgia Republican.....chair of a key congressional subcommittee on science and technology...responding to a woman who asked whether he'd be looking into...if the (CDC) had covered up information linking vaccines to autism. He responded with a rather unscientific personal anecdote: "I believe it's the parents' decision whether to immunize or not…Most of our children, we didn't immunize. They're healthy."
The culture wars continued: Avijit Roy, whose Mukto-Mona (Free-mind) blog championed liberal secular writing in the Muslim-majority nation, attacked along with his wife in Dhaka...Roy, said to be around 40, is the second Bangladeshi blogger to have been murdered in two years and the fourth writer to have been attacked since 2004. Hardline Islamist groups have long demanded the public execution of atheist bloggers and sought new laws to combat writing critical of Islam....
Medical X Press has a good summery of the findings. The plague made it's way from Asia to Europe along the silk road when fleas hitch hiked a ride. The rodents in Central Asia carried the plague and would die out during droughts. The fleas would then jump on other animals and people and then the outbreak would occur 16 years later in Europe.
This could be the next food fight in Congress. Families in states like Florida that turned down Medicaid expansion, depend on chip to cover their kids. They pay a small monthly premium for the coverage. Funding is running out on this program.
The program serves children from families that earn too much to qualify for Medicaid. Unlike Medicaid, it’s not an open-ended entitlement program, so states have more flexibility to limit eligibility, which ranges from 100 percent of the federal poverty line to about 400 percent.