Archive for the 'Science' Category

Racism’s chronic stress likely contributes to health disparities

Monday, November 13th, 2017

NPR Health News: You, Me And Them: Experiencing Discrimination In America. “Scientists Start To Tease Out The Subtler Ways Racism Hurts Health.”

“Both studies investigated the impacts of specific, dramatic events — and the results were consistent.

“You could time exactly when it happened,” says Geronimus. “We could measure before and after.”

But she views such events as merely slivers of insight into patterns that may quietly be happening on a much larger scale among many populations. Patterns that are harder to tease out and measure — like the effects of centuries of racism against black Americans, or a persistent series of incidents involving police brutality against minorities.

Maybe, Geronimus says, the cascade of stress that such events initiate sets the stage for health disparities in a generation of children — before they even enter the world.”

Erhöhte Ruthenium-Werte – kein Unfall in einem Kernkraftwerk

Sunday, November 12th, 2017

Deutsche Welle: Französischer Bericht über Nuklear-Vorfall: Erhöhte Radioaktivität kam aus Russland oder Kasachstan. “Ende September hatten Wetterstationen in Westeuropa erhöhte Werte von radioaktivem Ruthenium-106 gemessen. Pariser Experten glauben nun eine Erklärung gefunden zu haben.”

Bericht vom 09.10.2017: Was ist Ruthenium-106? “Seit Tagen werden in Europa winzige Mengen Radioaktivität in der Luft gemessen. Das Ruthenium-106 soll irgendwo aus dem Ural stammen. Einen Atomunfall schließen Experten aus. Es soll harmlos sein. Und sonst?”

Näheres zu Ruthenium und der Immission im September/Oktober bei Wikipedia.

Hintergrund:

Die Zeit: Ruthenium: Leicht erhöhte Radioaktivität aus dem Ural. “Rätselhaft, aber wohl harmlos. Seit Tagen werden in Europa winzige Mengen Radioaktivität gemessen. Strahlenexperten vermuten, dass das Ruthenium-106 aus dem Ural kommt.” Meldung vom 08.10.2017.

“Von den Partikeln gehe keine Gefahr aus. Ihre Konzentration in der Luft sei sehr gering. “Selbst bei konstanter Einatmung über den Zeitraum von einer Woche ergibt sich daraus eine Dosis, die niedriger ist als die, die durch die natürliche Umgebungsstrahlung in einer Stunde aufgenommen wird”, heißt es in einer Mitteilung des Umweltministeriums. Die gemessene Dosis ist 100.000 mal kleiner als jene, ab der Maßnahmen zum Schutz der Bevölkerung notwendig seien.”

“Life isn’t about having food on the table. It’s about fulfilling your destiny.”

Monday, November 6th, 2017

The Atavist Magazine: Promethea Unbound. “A child genius raised in poverty, she wanted to change the world. Then a horrific act of violence nearly destroyed her.” By Mike Mariani.

Link via MetaFilter.

“Extremely likely” means a probability between 95 and 100%

Friday, November 3rd, 2017

If baffles me that there are still people denying the human influence on climate even though many studies show that it is extremely likely. I mean, if it is extremely likely that you will sustain serious injuries or die when jumping out of a third floor window, would you take the chances and jump?!

Part of the problem seems to be that many people don’t know enough about statistics, and that some politicians don’t trust the scientific method.

NPR The Two-Way: Massive Government Report Says Climate Is Warming And Humans Are The Cause.

“It is “extremely likely” that human activities are the “dominant cause” of global warming, according to the the most comprehensive study ever of climate science by U.S. government researchers.

The climate report, obtained by NPR, notes that the past 115 years are “the warmest in the history of modern civilization.” The global average temperature has increased by about 1.8 degree Fahrenheit over that period. Greenhouse gases from industry and agriculture are by far the biggest contributor to warming.

The findings contradict statements by President Trump and many of his Cabinet members, who have openly questioned the role humans play in changing the climate.

“I believe that measuring with precision human activity on the climate is something very challenging to do,” EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt said in an interview earlier this year. “There’s tremendous disagreement about the degree of impact.”

That is not consistent with the conclusions of the 600-plus page Climate Science Special Report, which is part of an even larger scientific review known as the fourth National Climate Assessment.
[…]
The report states that the global climate will continue to warm. How much, it says, “will depend primarily on the amount of greenhouse gases (especially carbon dioxide) emitted globally.” Without major reductions in emissions, it says, the increase in annual average global temperature could reach 9 degrees Fahrenheit relative to pre-industrial times. Efforts to reduce emissions, it says, would slow the rate of warming.
[…]
The report has been submitted to the Office of Science and Technology Policy at the White House. Trump has yet to choose anyone to run that office; it remains one of the last unfilled senior positions in the White House staff.”

“The good news is the void is there.”

Thursday, November 2nd, 2017

NPR The Two-Way: Scientists Say They’ve Found Hidden Space In Great Pyramid Of Giza.

“Tayoubi explains that his team installed sheets of muon-detecting film in a lower-level room of the pyramid known as the Queen’s Chamber. The goal was to test whether they could use muons to accurately discern two well-known rooms located above: the King’s Chamber and Grand Gallery.

They saw those rooms but, to their surprise, they found an additional large space as well.”

Deutsche Welle: Hohlraum in Cheops-Pyramide entdeckt. “Seit zwei Jahren durchleuchten internationale Forscherteams mit Strahlungsdetektoren die Cheops-Pyramide. Jetzt feierten sie den Durchbruch: Sie entdeckten einen riesigen Hohlraum in der größten Pyramide in Gizeh.”