August 10, 2010
By: Ethan A. Huff
A recent report issued by the European Union has revealed that biofuels, or fuel made from living, renewable sources, is not really all that beneficial to the environment. Rather than reduce the net carbon footprint as intended, biofuels can produce four times more carbon dioxide pollution than conventional fossil fuels do.
Common biofuels like corn ethanol, which has become a popular additive in gasoline, and soy biodiesel, which is being used in commercial trucks and other diesel-fueled vehicles, are often considered to be environmentally-friendly because they are renewable. But in order to grow enough of these crops to use for both food and fuel, large swaths of land around the world are being converted into crop fields for growing biofuels.
In other words, millions of acres of lush rainforests are becoming corn and soy fields in order to provide enough of these resources for their new uses. The net carbon footprint of growing crops for fuel is far higher than what is emitted from simple fossil fuel usage.
According to the report, American soybeans have an indirect carbon footprint of 340kg of CO2 per gigajoule (GJ), while conventional diesel and gasoline create only 85kg/GJ. Similarly, the European rapeseed, a plant similar to the North American canola, indirectly produces 150kg/GJ because additional land in other nations has been converted to grow rapeseed for food in order to replace the native crops that are now being grown for fuel.
Ironically, the amount of direct and indirect resources used to grow food for fuel is quite high compared to that of conventional fossil fuels. Biofuels also do not burn as efficiently and can be rough on the engines they fuel. Ethanol-enriched gasoline can also reduce gas mileage efficiency by upwards of 25 percent, depending on the vehicle.
Growing food for fuel ends up increasing the price of food for consumers. It also puts additional strain on families, many of whom are already having difficulties making ends meet in current economic conditions.
When all is said and done, biofuels seem to be a whole lot of hype with not a lot of benefit. Environmentally, fiscally and practically, biofuels are a disaster. Fossil fuels may not be an ideal form of clean energy, but at this point in time, they make a lot more sense than biofuels.
June 10, 2010
By Mike Adams
(NaturalNews) Most people are familiar with type-1 diabetes and type-2 diabetes, but did you know researchers have discovered a third type of diabetes? Type-3 diabetes, as they are calling it, affects people who are extra sensitive to electrical devices that emit “dirty” electricity.
Type-3 diabetics actually experience spikes in blood sugar and an increased heart rate when exposed to electrical pollution (“electropollution”) from things like computers, televisions, cordless and mobile phones, and even compact fluorescent light bulbs.
Dr. Magda Havas, a PhD from Trent University in Canada, recently published the results of a study she conducted on the relationship between electromagnetic fields and diabetes in Electromagnetic Biology and Medicine. In it, she explains how she and her team came to discover this about why electropollution is so dangerous for many people.
Blood sugar goes haywire
One of the most interesting finding in her study was that electro-sensitive people whose blood sugar decreases when they go for a walk outdoors actually experience an increase in blood sugar when walking on a treadmill.
Treadmills, you see, are electrical devices that emit electrical pollution. But interestingly, even the physical exertion of walking on the treadmill did not make up for the blood sugar spiking effect of the EMFs emitted by the treadmills. Despite the exercise, in other words, type-3 diabetics experienced significant spikes in blood sugar when walking on the treadmill.
Dirty electricity is bad for everyone, but it is especially bad for people who are type-3 diabetics. And Dr. Havas explains in her study that even having an electrical device plugged into the wall near someone who is type-3 diabetic can cause them problems.
September 10, 2009
By Leslie Cauley
Some cellphones emit several times more radiation than others, the Environmental Working Group found in one of the most exhaustive studies of its kind.
The government watchdog group on Wednesday releases a list ranking cellphones in terms of radiation. The free listing of more than 1,000 devices can be viewed here.
Concerns about radiation and cellphones have swirled for years. Scientific evidence to date has not been able to make a hard link between cancer and cellphones. But recent studies “are showing increased risk for brain and mouth tumors for people who have used cellphones for at least 10 years,” says Jane Houlihan, senior vice president of research at the Washington-based group.
CTIA, the wireless industry lobbying association, disagrees. In a statement it noted that “scientific evidence has overwhelmingly indicated that wireless devices do not pose” a health hazard.
That’s why the American Cancer Society, World Health Organization and Food and Drug Administration, among others, “all have concurred that wireless devices are not a public health risk,” the CTIA statement says.
Houlihan acknowledges that “the verdict is still out” on whether cellphones can be linked directly to cancer.
“But there’s enough concern that the governments of six countries” — including France, Germany and Israel — “have issued limits of usage of cellphones, particularly for children.”
Houlihan says her group is “advising people to choose a phone that falls on the lower end of the (radiation) spectrum” to minimize potential health problems. The Samsung Impression has the lowest: 0.35 watts per kilogram, a measure of how much radiation is absorbed into the brain when the phone is held to the ear.
The highest: T-Mobile’s MyTouch 3G, Motorola Moto VU204 and Kyocera Jax S1300, all at 1.55 W/kg.
The Apple iPhone, sold exclusively by AT&T in the USA, is in the middle of the pack at 1.19 W/kg.
The Federal Communications Commission, which sets standards for cellphone radiation, requires that all devices be rated at 1.6 W/kg or lower.
The Environmental Working Group says the FCC’s standard is outmoded, noting that it was established 17 years ago, when cellphones and wireless usage patterns were much different. The group wants the government to take a “fresh look” at radiation standards.
The FCC currently doesn’t require handset makers to divulge radiation levels. As a result, radiation rankings for dozens of devices, including the BlackBerry Pearl Flip 8230 and Motorola KRZR, aren’t on the group’s list.