Life-Saving Golden Rice Finally Gets to Poor Farmers Despite Environmentalist Opposition

By Ronald Bailey – Re-Blogged From Reason

Bangladesh announces that it will allow its farmers to plant this genetically improved crop

Golden Rice which has been genetically engineered to have higher levels of the vitamin A precursor beta-carotene is finally about be to approved for planting by poor farmers in Bangladesh. This a big step toward improving the health of some of the poorest people on the planet. Vitamin A deficiency causes blindness in between 250,000 and 500,000 children each year, half of whom die within 12 months, according to the World Health Organization. A study by German researchers in 2014 estimated that activist opposition to the deployment of Golden Rice has resulted in the loss of 1.4 million life-years in just India alone.

Environmentalist ideologues have fought fiercely for two decades to prevent this crop from being offered to poor farmers in developing countries. Among other things, they hired thugs to rip up test fields of the grain at the International Rice Research Institute in the Phillippines.

GoldenRiceIRRI

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Tilting at Windmills – a Brief Update

By Andi May – Re-Blogged From WUWT

About this time last year, I wrote a light-hearted review of New Zealand’s love affair with Wind Generation.

Since then I’ve become interested in seeing just how effective these things really are. Where I live adjacent to a string of Turbines, we get some pretty impressive winds – 150Kph is not that unusual. But we also get days of complete calm – usually at times when electricity demand is at its highest.

Nonetheless, our green-biased Government elected just over a year ago are still pushing so-called renewables as the way of the future. Interestingly New Zealand already produces more than 80% of its energy from Renewables, with Geothermal and Hydro way ahead of Wind.

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Syria Threatens To Attack The Golan Heights And Israel Prepares For War

By Michael Snyder _Re-Blogged From Freedom Outpost

The winds of war are blowing once again, and it isn’t going to take much to spark a major conflict in the Middle East.  This week is the eighth anniversary of the beginning of the civil war in Syria, and after the nightmare that the people of Syria have been through, you would think that the Assad regime would be eager for peace.  But instead, Assad appears to be ready to go for broke.  If Syria can spark a Middle East war that results in the complete destruction of Israel, Assad would be remembered as a hero in the Islamic world forever.  Instead of a legacy of civil war and crushing poverty, Assad’s legacy would be one of wartime leader that brought total victory over Syria’s most hated enemy.  But of course, such a conflict would be a huge risk because if it went badly the city of Damascus would be completely flattened and the nation of Syria as we know it today would be entirely destroyed.  And considering how overwhelmingly powerful the Israeli military is, it would seem to be a very foolish risk to take.  Unfortunately, Assad does not appear to be thinking rationally.  On Thursday, Syria officially threatened “to attack Israel unless it withdraws from the Golan Heights”.  The following comes from the Jerusalem Post

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How More Cooling Generates Global Warming

Re-Blogged From WUWT

From the “we’ll fix that in post” department comes this from down under courtesy of Dr. Jennifer Marohasy.

COOLING the past relative to the present has the general effect of making the present appear hotter – it is a way of generating more global warming for the same weather.

The Bureau of Meteorology has rewritten Australia’s temperature in this way for the second time in just six years – increasing the rate of warming by 23 percent between Version 1 and the new Version 2 of the official ACORN-SAT temperature record.

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Will The Fed Cut Its Interest Rate Forecast

By Arkadiusz Sieroń – Re-Blogged From Gold Eagle

Some important pieces of the US economic reports, including the latest nonfarm payrolls, have disappointed recently. May indicators (including the leading ones) have hit a soft patch it seems. Will that push the Fed to downgrade its dot-plot or fine-tune the monetary policy mix anyhow? Can gold jump in reaction to the Wednesday’s FOMC policy meeting?

February Payrolls Disappoint

U.S. nonfarm payrolls plunged in February, falling way short of expectations. The economy added just 20,000 jobs last month, following a rise of 311,000 in January (after an upward revision) and significantly below 172,000 forecasted by the economists. The number was the smallest increase since September 2017, as one can see in the chart below. On an annual basis, the pace of job creation increased slightly last month to 1.8 percent.

Chart 1: Monthly changes in employment gains (red bars, in thousands of persons) from February 2014 to February 2019

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US Pulling Last Diplomats from Venezuela Amid Power Crisis

By The Associated Press – Re-Blogged From Newsmax

The U.S. said late Monday that it is pulling its last remaining diplomats from Venezuela, saying their continued presence at the country’s embassy in Caracas had become a “constraint” on U.S. policy as the Trump administration aggressively looks to oust socialist President Nicolas Maduro.

The announcement came from Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in a tweet shortly before midnight comes as Venezuela struggles to restore electricity following four days of blackouts around the country.

The U.S. has led an international effort to replace Maduro with opposition leader Juan Guaido, who vows to hold a new presidential election. Guaido is backed by some 50 countries, while Maduro maintains support from countries such as China, Russia and Cuba.

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Chinese Data & Global Equities Markets (PART III)

In the previous two segments of this research post PART I, PART II, we’ve hypothesized that the recent Chinese economic data and the resulting global shift to re-evaluate risk factors within China/Asia are prompting global traders/investors to seek protective alternative investment sources.  Our primary concern is that a credit/debt economic contraction event may be on the cusp of unfolding over the next 12~24 months in China/Asia.  It appears that all of the fundamental components are in place and, unless China is able to skillfully navigate through this credit contraction event, further economic fallout may begin to affect other global markets.

One key component of this credit crisis event is the Belt Road Initiative (BRI) and the amount of credit that has been extended to multiple foreign nations.  We don’t believe China will run out money by the end of March and we don’t believe any crisis event will come out of nowhere to land in China within a week or two.  Our concern is for an extended downturn to decrease economic opportunity by 5~12% each year for a period of 4~7+ years.  It is this type of extended economic slowdown that can be the most costly in terms of political and economic opportunity.  An extended downturn in the Chinese and Asian economies would create revenue, credit, debt, and ongoing social servicing issues.

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