Why The World Is Starting To Panic Over Climate – Analysis

By Robin Russell-Jones Scientific background Climate change is the biggest threat that humanity has ever faced. Warming of the troposphere as a result of releasing man-made greenhouse gases into the atmosphere was predicted as long ago as 1896. Levels of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the atmosphere have been measured continuously since 1958 at the Mauna Lao Observatory in Hawaii. CO2 has risen from a pre-industrial level of 280 parts per million (ppm) to 415 ppm (2021). Methane is the second most important greenhouse gas and has risen from a pre-industrial level of 722 parts per billion to 1,866 (2019). Methane levels … Continue reading Why The World Is Starting To Panic Over Climate – Analysis

Panpsychism, the idea that inanimate objects have consciousness, gains steam in science communities

DNA, Atoms and particles (Getty Images/Yuichiro Chino) An expanding notion of what “consciousness” is could have profound repercussions By MATTHEW ROZSA Dr. Martin Picard is an associate professor of behavioral medicine at Columbia University Irving Medical Center, specializing in both psychiatry and neurology. Together, expertise in these two fields suits one well to understanding the essence of what makes one human. Picard is particularly knowledgable about mitochondria, a structure found within nearly all cells that have a nucleus. They provide most of the chemical energy that cells use in their various biochemical tasks, and are sometimes likened to batteries. Picard sees something else in mitochondria, too. Last year, he … Continue reading Panpsychism, the idea that inanimate objects have consciousness, gains steam in science communities

Earth Temperature Could Reach ‘Tipping Point’ Within Five Years, Study Warns

A study by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) suggests Earth’s temperature could reach its ‘tipping point’ within the next five years.  BY : EMILY BROWN  Last year marked one of the three warmest years on record, with the global average temperature being 1.2°C above pre-industrial levels, but the WMO has warned the worst could be yet to come as the chances of the temperature reaching 1.5°C are increasing with time. The UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has established 1.5°C as a key tipping point for the Earth’s temperature, beyond which the risks of disasters such as extreme drought, fires, floods and … Continue reading Earth Temperature Could Reach ‘Tipping Point’ Within Five Years, Study Warns

Your brain has limits. Here are some simple ways to extend your mind, according to science

Acclaimed science writer Annie Murphy Paul says that in order to think the intelligent, informed, original thoughts we’re capable of, we can’t rely on the brain alone. Read on to learn how you can extend your mind. BY BOOK BITES Annie Murphy Paul is an acclaimed science writer whose work has appeared in the New York Times, the Boston Globe, Scientific American, TIME magazine, and the Best American Science Writing. She is currently a fellow in New America’s Learning Sciences Exchange. Below, Annie shares five key insights from her new book, The Extended Mind: The Power of Thinking Outside the Brain. Listen to the audio version—read by … Continue reading Your brain has limits. Here are some simple ways to extend your mind, according to science

How to Unlearn a Disease

Medicine’s latest cure is forgetting you’re sick. BY KELLY CLANCY My father, a neurologist, once had a patient who was tormented, in the most visceral sense, by a poem. Philip was 12 years old and a student at a prestigious boarding school in Princeton, New Jersey. One of his assignments was to recite Edgar Allan Poe’s The Raven. By the day of the presentation, he had rehearsed the poem dozens of times and could recall it with ease. But this time, as he stood before his classmates, something strange happened. Each time he delivered the poem’s famous haunting refrain—“Quoth the Raven … Continue reading How to Unlearn a Disease

Protein in deadly spider venom blocks “death signal” after heart attack

By Nick Lavars As unlikely as it may seem, the venom of the deadly funnel web spider could prove a valuable source of a number of life-saving medicines, including drugs that kill skin cancer and reduce brain damage in stroke victims. Adding to these possibilities is new research demonstrating how a drug candidate built off a molecule in this spider venom can stop the “death signal” that results from a heart attack, potentially providing first responders with a powerful new way to intervene. The work was carried out by scientists at the Australia’s University of Queensland and actually builds off a previous study in which … Continue reading Protein in deadly spider venom blocks “death signal” after heart attack

Study: Alcohol Linked to More Than 700,000 Cancer Cases Worldwide Every Year

Though heavy drinking was most strongly linked to cancer, even light to moderate drinking contributed to over 100,000 cases a year, the researchers estimated. By Ed CaraYesterday New research this week is the latest to find that alcohol use is a major cancer risk, one that people aren’t necessarily too aware of. The study estimated that over 700,000 cases of cancer worldwide can be attributed to alcohol annually. The research, published in Lancet Oncology, was conducted by scientists in North America, Europe, and Africa. It’s meant to be an update to previous estimates of the cancer burden linked to alcohol use. For … Continue reading Study: Alcohol Linked to More Than 700,000 Cancer Cases Worldwide Every Year

NASA predicts a “wobble” in the moon’s orbit may lead to record flooding on Earth

BY SOPHIE LEWIS Every coast in the U.S. is facing rapidly increasing high tide floods thanks to a “wobble” in the moon’s orbit working in tandem with climate change-fueled rising sea levels. A new study from NASA and the University of Hawaii, published recently in the journal Nature Climate Change, warns that upcoming changes in the moon’s orbit could lead to record flooding on Earth in the next decade.  Through mapping the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) sea-level rise scenarios, flooding thresholds and astronomical cycles, researchers found flooding in American coastal cities could be several multiples worse in the 2030s, when … Continue reading NASA predicts a “wobble” in the moon’s orbit may lead to record flooding on Earth

Our brains “read” expressions of illusory faces in things just like real faces

“For the brain, fake or real, faces are all processed the same way.” by JENNIFER OUELLETTE  Human beings are champions at spotting patterns, especially faces, in inanimate objects—think of the famous “face on Mars” in images taken by the Viking 1 orbiter in 1976, which is essentially a trick of light and shadow. And people are always spotting what they believe to be the face of Jesus in burnt toast and many other (so many) ordinary foodstuffs. There was even a now-defunct Twitter account devoted to curating images of the “faces in things” phenomenon. The phenomenon’s fancy name is facial pareidolia. Scientists at the University of … Continue reading Our brains “read” expressions of illusory faces in things just like real faces

The Delta Variant Isn’t Just Hyper-Contagious. It Also Grows More Rapidly Inside You

by MICHAELEEN DOUCLEFF After months of data collection, scientists agree: The delta variant is the most contagious version of the coronavirus worldwide. It spreads about 225% faster than the original version of the virus, and it’s currently dominating the outbreak in the United States. A new study, published online Wednesday, sheds light on why. It finds that the variant grows more rapidly inside people’s respiratory tracts and to much higher levels, researchers at the Guangdong Provincial Center for Disease Control and Prevention reported. On average, people infected with the delta variant had about 1,000 times more copies of the virus in their respiratory tracts … Continue reading The Delta Variant Isn’t Just Hyper-Contagious. It Also Grows More Rapidly Inside You