Science

Zimbabwean Girls Venture into Technological Innovation

For 22-year-old Moselyn Muchena, a final year computer science student at the University of Zimbabwe, it seemed obvious to create a mobile application offering easy access to services in the local catering industry, largely because of the huge number of female entrepreneurs in that sector.


Where Would You Like Your New Glacier?

The idea sounds like harebrained science-fiction, but the accelerated retreat of glaciers due to global warming and the effects of mining is leading scientists to seek to restore or recreate these valuable reservoirs of fresh water.

Q&A: Mutant Fruit Trees to Grow in Saline Soils in Cuba

During some parts of the year, a layer of salt can be seen on the ground in eastern Cuba, which makes it difficult, and sometimes impossible, to farm. Since agronomist Orlando Coto saw this with his own eyes, he has been searching for salt-tolerant fruit trees.

Argentina Will Try to Double Number of Engineering Graduates

An educational stimulus programme launched in Argentina is aimed at doubling the number of engineering graduates by 2021, in an attempt to fulfil unmet growing demand from industry.

Phytoplankton is a vital component in the ocean's food chain, and generates at least half of the oxygen we breathe. Credit: NOAA/public domain

Climate Change Threatens Crucial Marine Algae

Without major reductions in the use of fossil fuels, sunlight is to kill an unknown number of ocean phytoplankton, the planet's most important organism, a new study reports this week.

OP-ED: Carbon Doxide Emissions on the Rise as the Kyoto Era Fades

At the Mauna Loa Observatory in Hawaii, the latest on-site measurements of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere by the Scripps Institute of Oceanography reveal that global atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) concentrations reached 391.3 parts per million (ppm) in 2011, up from 388.56 ppm in 2010 and from 280 ppm from pre-industrial times.

Malaria Adds to Myanmar’s Woes

Political reforms unfolding in Myanmar (or Burma) are giving health workers a chance to address a resurgence of drug-resistant falciparum malaria in the war-torn ethnic minority enclaves along the country’s eastern borders.

A recent study found that "zero percent" of federal funding of synthetic biology was going into risk assessment. Credit: Horia Varlan/CC By 2.0

In New U.S. “Bioeconomy”, Industry Trumps Environment

The White House on Thursday announced the formulation of the National Bioeconomy Blueprint, aimed at shoring up the U.S. commitment to bioscience-related research.

Seedbed of Technology Flourishes in Guatemala

"We're making a three-dimensional educational video game. The idea is to create virtual worlds where children can explore and interact with other people and objects," said Carlos Villagrán, seated at a computer in the Campus Tecnológico in the Guatemalan capital.

About 60 percent of Kenya’s power is hydroelectric, however, the supply is unsteady.  Credit: Isaiah Esipisu/IPS

Kenya “Becoming Economic Heartbeat of Africa”

When Kenya’s newly announced geothermal power generation project comes online, it will turn the East African country into an economic powerhouse in the region.

The current Vogtle nuclear power plant in Georgia. Lawsuits have been filed against approved proposals to build two more reactors. Credit: Blatant World/ CC by 2.0

Legal Challenges Counter Plans for New Nuclear Reactors

Until this past February, the last time new nuclear power construction was approved in the United States was in 1978. But when the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) approved two proposed nuclear reactors at Plant Vogtle near Augusta, Georgia, on February 9 in a four to one vote, it took less than a week for the legal action to begin.

Cloning – Lifeline for Cashmere Shawl Industry

After scientists in Kashmir successfully cloned the pashmina goat, that produces the famous ‘cashmere’ wool, hopes are running high for the revival of the traditional shawl-making industry in this Indian state.

Farmer Selinah Mncwango is proud of her traditional sorghum seeds.  Credit: Kristin Palitza/IPS

South Africa’s Smallholders Lose Battle for Seed Security

In an almost ceremonial manner, Selinah Mncwango opens her big plastic bag and pulls out several smaller packets, each filled with different types of seeds: sorghum, bean, pumpkin, and maize. They are her pride, her wealth, the "pillar of my family," says the farmer from a village in South Africa’s KwaZulu-Natal province.

Mexican Seeds, the New Spoils for Food Corporations

Biodiversity and small and medium farms are threatened in Mexico by the looming approval of a reform of the law on plant varieties that will extend patent rights over seeds, activists and experts warn.

On Jul. 20, 2011, the peaceful country of Malawi broke out into nationwide anti-government protests. Credit: Katie Lin/IPS

Social Media Activism Takes Root in Malawi

As Malawians celebrate Joyce Banda’s appointment as president on sites, like Facebook and Twitter, the increased use of social media in Malawi comes full circle as her new government takes office.

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