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This is How We Got to Zero Ebola Cases in West Africa:

whitehouse.gov - by Amy Pope - December 30, 2015

Summary: The world has now gone over 40 consecutive days without a single reported Ebola case. Here's how we helped make that possible.

For the first time since this outbreak was detected in West Africa in early 2014, the world has now gone over 40 consecutive days without a single reported Ebola case.

The World Health Organization (WHO) announced that Guinea has successfully halted Ebola transmission and now joins Sierra Leone and Liberia in recovering from this devastating disease. This represents a significant milestone for Guinea, West Africa, and the international community.

Today we reflect on what is possible when partners around the world come together to solve a common problem. Through the undaunted courage of local communities and heroes from around the world, West Africa was able to halt Ebola. The United States was proud to offer help along with partners around the world.

Today we remember Ebola’s victims, and embrace the communities, families, healthcare workers, and survivors.

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Preparing for the Next Ebola - The Year In Review

submitted by George Hurlburt

             

Caught off guard in 2014, health care regrouped and reorganized in 2015.  (Photo: Romeo Ranoco/Reuters)

takepart.com - by Hannah Hoag - December 14, 2015

As horrific images of bodies piling up in West Africa and stories of children orphaned by Ebola filled American media over the summer and early fall of 2014, many feared someone with the virus would arrive undetected in the U.S. and spur a major outbreak. But experts considered the risk of that happening to be very low, says Kamran Khan, an infectious disease physician at St. Michael’s Hospital in Toronto and the founder of BlueDot, a social enterprise that uses big data to mitigate the impacts of global infectious disease. . . .

. . . Yet in October 2014, Thomas Eric Duncan was admitted to a Dallas hospital with Ebola shortly after arriving in the U.S. from Liberia.

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From the Ground Up: Building Our Energy Future, One Turbine at a Time

MidAmerican Energy Company

This video explains how a wind farm is built.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=84BeVq2Jm88

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NOAA: Salt Marshes Combat Climate Change

             

Shorebirds feed in the shallows of Estero Bay State Preserve.  In the background are black mangroves, which are part of a salt marsh, which absorbs large amounts of carbon dioxide.  (Photo: File photo by Andrew West)

CLICK HERE - RESEARCH - PLOS One - Living Shorelines: Coastal Resilience with a Blue Carbon Benefit

news-press.com - by Chad Gillis - December 24, 2015

Natural, living shorelines in areas like the Gulf of Mexico absorb a lot of carbon dioxide and will help blunt the effects of climate change.

And coastal wetlands store several times the amount that can be absorbed by mature tropical forests, the research shows.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration studied wetlands in North Carolina and reports that plants, sand and rocks are better for the environment than man-made features like concrete sea walls and high-rise condominiums.

The report, published earlier this month in the journal PLOS One, shows that natural features in coastal areas help keep atmospheric carbon dioxide levels lower.

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A New Weapon in Fight Against Ebola

The team has achieved an unprecedented goal: connecting 12 fullerenes, each one endowed with 10 sugar moieties, to other central fullerene, thus mimicking the presentation of carbohydrates surrounding the Ebola virus.  Credit: N. Martín & B. Illescas / UCM

CLICK HERE - A giant fullerene system inhibits the infection by an artificial Ebola virus

CLICK HERE - STUDY - Synthesis of giant globular multivalent glycofullerenes as potent inhibitors in a model of Ebola virus infection

scitechconnect.elsevier.com - by SPLICE - November 19, 2015

A discovery which may lead to the elimination of Ebola infections was published in Nature Chemistry a few days ago. The investigators reported that giant fullerene system inhibits the cell infection by an artificial Ebola virus.

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Over 1 Million Children Out Of School Due To Boko Haram Attacks: UN

            

Members of the Bring Back Our Girls group campaigning for the release of the Chibok schoolgirls kidnapped by Boko Haram Islamists march to meet with the Nigerian president in Abuja, on July 8, 2015. Members of the BringBackOurGirls campaign group marched on July 8 to meet President Mohammadu Buhari to pressure him to end the deadly Boko Haram insurgency and free 219 schoolgirls held by the group since April 2014.  PHILIP OJISUA VIA GETTY IMAGES

UNICEF has been able to reach 67,000 students by setting up temporary learning spaces and renovating and expanding schools.

huffingtonpost.com - by Eleanor Goldberg - December 22, 2015

As Boko Haram continues to wage targeted attacks against civilians in northeastern Nigeria and its neighboring countries, more than 1 million children have been forced out of school -- a consequence that leaves them more susceptible to violence, poverty and child marriage. 

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The ‘Gene Drive’ That Builds a Malaria-Proof Mosquito

Anopheles stephensi Mosquito (female). David Scharf/Corbis

Image: Anopheles stephensi Mosquito (female). David Scharf/Corbis

wired.com - November 24th, 2015 - Sarah Zhang

On Monday, scientists announced they could cheat the laws of evolution: They had devised a way to force a gene that kills malaria parasites to spread through a whole population of mosquitoes that normally carry the parasite—at least in a lab. No malaria in mosquitoes means, hypothetically, no malaria in people, either. All this is possible thanks to a controversial new technology known as a gene drive.

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Climate Scientists Used to Just Get Angry. Now They’re Taking Action

Climate talks in Paris 2015. Christophe Morin/Bloomberg /Getty Images

Image: Climate talks in Paris 2015. Christophe Morin/Bloomberg /Getty Images

wired.com - December 4th, 2015 - Lizzie Wade

Ken Caldeira liked plenty of things about working in finance in the early 1980s. He had studied applied science as an undergrad, and developing software on Wall Street kept his problem-solving skills sharp. But however interesting he found the day-to-day work, Caldeira couldn’t escape the thought that in the grand scheme of things, all he was really doing was “helping rich people get a little richer.”

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Drowning Megacities

             

interactive.aljazeera.com - 2015

The world is getting warmer, the rain is growing heavier and the oceans are rising. At the same time, the world’s rural inhabitants are migrating to its cities on a massive scale.

Sub-Saharan Africa is the part of the world most affected by the dual pressure of climate change and the rapid, uncontrolled transformation of its cities into megacities.

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Some communities are destroyed by tragedy and disaster. Others spring back. Here’s what makes the difference.

             

Cindy Quinonez, center, whose cousin Aurora Godoy was killed in last week’s shooting rampage, attends a makeshift memorial Tuesday in San Bernardino, Calif. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

washingtonpost.com - by Daniel Aldrich - December 9, 2015

How do people survive and move on from tragedies like last week’s terrorist attacks at home and abroad? When does a tragedy — whether human-made or natural disaster or a combination of the two — destroy a community, and when do they recover and thrive? . . .

. . . The answer is in an often misunderstood concept called “resilience.”

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