Archive for March 28th, 2011

March 28, 2011

The earth is shaking as strong earthquakes reported worldwide in the past 48 hours

[Anthony Smith, Natural Disasters Contributor]

Digital Journal: In the last 48 hours earthquakes measuring from 6.0 to 7. 0 magnitude have been experienced worldwide from Japan, Fiji, Papua New Guinea to Alaska to the region of Russia-Japan.

Monday 28th March 27th 2011

Japan: A 2nd earthquake shook Japan. It measured 6.5 and occurred in the the port of Sendai.  No casualty, or damage reports have been given by the authorities.

Sunday March 27th 2011

Fiji: Yesterday earthquakes of 4.5 and 4.8 magnitudes at an average depth of 450 km shook the ocean floor near Fiji followed by a subsequent 4.4 earthquake that occurred in the Savu Sea at a depth of 65.8 km which was succeeded by a 5.9 magnitude earthquake which shook the coast of Fiji at a depth of 13.4km.

Greece: Earthquakes of 2.1 and 2.7 in magnitude struck Athens and the Dodecanese Islands of Greece on Sunday. No casualties, or damage reports have been given.\

Mexico: An earthquake of magnitude 5.7 struck the coast of southern Mexico along the Cocos plate, according to the US Geological Survey.  No casualties, or damage has yet been reported.

Alaska, USA – March 23rd 2011: Last Wednesday, an earthquake of 6.3-magnitude shook Alaska. Before that two earthquakes, one in Fiji of 6.0 magnitude, the other in Papau New Guinea of 6.4 magnitude were experienced.

In addition to the above events, in recent weeks, strong earthquakes have hit: Thailand, Afghanistan, Burma, Dominican Republic, Japan and Russia.

March 28, 2011

Radioactivity is not all that bad for us, says Oxford nuclear medicine expert

[Robert Cassa, Nuclear Energy News Contributor]
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BBC News reports that according to Wade Allison, a nuclear and medical physicist at the University of Oxford, there is far too much negative hype around about the dangers of radiation.
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The expert says that whilst nuclear radiation is dangerous when levels are quite elevated, the majority of emissions do not cause life-threatening events.  He goes on to say that nuclear technology heals many cancer patients on a day, by day basis and each radiation dose for the cure in hospitals is similar to doses received by us in the environment.
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He points out that in the Three Mile Island event, no known deaths have been reported. Even in Chernobyl, according to the most recent UN report of 28th February, only around 43 deaths have been confirmed most of which would have been avoided if iodine tablets had been taken as is now being done in Japan.
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Wade points out that we all worry far too much about radiation because it is invisible to us.  But we should not worry too much, as recent research has found that our cells can replace and heal themselves in many ways to rid themselves of the effects of radiation dosages.  However, where our cells are overloaded, they will fail – for example dosages of over 4,000 mSv will cause death.

March 28, 2011

Video shows UK’s Bobby Roberts Super Circus beating chained elephant

[Patricia Clarque, Animal Care News Contributor]

Guardian.co.uk: A shocking video is serving as a fatal condemnation of the lack of care in Britain’s circuses which promotes situations that allow cruelty against the helpless animals that give their owners a good living.

To see the video, please click on the photo. However, please be warned that his video is shocking and for some it will be quite disturbing.

The secret video, taken by Animal Defenders International (ADI), shows a 57-year-old Asian elephant being hit  with a pitchfork by an attendant and being kicked several times whilst harnessed with chains at the Bobby Roberts Super Circus in England.  Although the circus’ owner says that the incident is an ‘isolated’ one, the video shows the depraved actions taking place whilst the owner apparently watches on.

UK police have started a joint investigation with the country’s Royal Society for the Protection of Animals (‘RSPCA‘) and ADI is requesting that the elephant, called Annie, to be taken from the custody of the Bobby Roberts Super Circus.

ADI says the video was shot between 21 January and 15 February in a barn in Polebrook, Nothamptonshire.

March 28, 2011

New 6.5 earthquake shakes Japan – tsunami feared

[Michael Nitta, Japan Nuclear Disaster News Contributor]

BBC News: The north-east coast of Japan this Sunday was shaken by a new earthquake measuring 6.5 and covering 109km east of the port of Sendai which has been already damaged by the last earthquake.

The authorities had warned of a tsunami, but this has not yet materialised. No damage and casualty reports are yet available.  The quake took place at 22.23 GMT on Sunday.

March 28, 2011

The UK is the place for start-ups, say 39 top British investors

[John Bringham, Investments Contributor]

Telegraph: In a letter to the Telegraph, 39 of the UK’s top venture capitalists say that the country’s recent budget is a ‘shot in the arm’ for business and as such it will enable them to put more money into start-up projects.

The investors signing the letter include:-

Will Adderley, CEO, Dunelm Group
Robert Bensoussan, Chairman, L.K. Bennett
Andy Bond, Chairman, ASDA
Ian Cheshire, Chief Executive, Kingfisher
Gerald Corbett, Chairman, SSL International, moneysupermarket.com, Britvic
Peter Cullum, Executive Chairman, Towergate
Tej Dhillon, Chairman and CEO, Dhillon Group
Philip Dilley, Chairman, Arup
Charles Dunstone, Chairman, Carphone Warehouse Group, Chairman, TalkTalk Telecom Group
Warren East, CEO, ARM Holdings
Gordon Frazer, Managing Director, Microsoft UK
Sir Christopher Gent, Non-Executive Chairman, GlaxoSmithKline
Ben Gordon, Chief Executive, Mothercare
Anthony Habgood, Chairman, Whitbread
Chairman, Reed Elsevier, Aidan Heavey
Chief Executive, Tullow Oil
Neil Johnson, Chairman, UMECO
Nick Leslau, Chairman, Prestbury Group
Ian Livingston, CEO, BT Group
Ruby McGregor-Smith, CEO, MITIE Group
Rick Medlock, CFO, Inmarsat; Non-Executive Director lovefilms.com, The Betting Group
John Nelson, Chairman, Hammerson
Stefano Pessina, Executive Chairman, Alliance Boots
Nick Prest, Chairman, AVEVA
Nick Robertson, CEO, ASOS
Sir Stuart Rose, Chairman, Marks & Spencer
Tim Steiner, CEO, Ocado
Andrew Sukawaty, Chairman and CEO, Inmarsat
Michael Turner, Executive Chairman, Fuller, Smith and Turner
Moni Varma, Chairman, Veetee
Paul Walker, Chief Executive, Sage
Paul Walsh, Chief Executive, Diageo
Robert Walters, CEO, Robert Walters
Joseph Wan, ,Chief Executive, Harvey Nichols
Bob Wigley, Chairman, Expansys, Stonehaven Associates, Yell Group
Simon Wolfson, Chief Executive, Next.

The investors are particularly complimentary about the UK Chancellor’s decision to increase tax relief on new business investment from 20% to 30% which they consider to be an excellent lift-up for start-up funding.

March 28, 2011

NATO takes over in Libya

[Jens Alamasian, Middle East & Africa Contributor]

Sify News: On Sunday, NATO formally took over all UN-articulated military interventions in Libya. This means that the current predominantly US-led coalition forces will cede command to NATO.

The organisation proposes to enforce the no-fly zone in Libya and has pledged to take:  ‘all necessary action’ to stop civilian attacks by the incumbent regime and: “.. to implement all aspects of the UN resolution. Nothing more, nothing less,” according to the organisation’s Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen.

NATO members, according the the rules of the organisation, need to decide now whether they will participate in the military operations and if so, their level of involvement. Only Germany so far has chosen to opt out of any military operations.

What is NATO

The North Atlantic Treaty Organization or NATO, is an international governmental military group which came into being as a result of the North Atlantic Treaty of 4 April 1949. It is headquartered in Brussels.

The essence of NATO is that all member states agree to a system of collective defence which means that if an external party attacks any member, then all members will join in its defence. In that regard, it would seem that its role in Libya presents a somewhat exaggerated extension of its remit especially as the Libyan regime did not attack any of of its members.

NATO has 28 members: Albania, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Turkey, the United Kingdom, and the United States.