Links for 2nd July 2009

Fresh from the clogged tubes of teh intarwubs…

  1. Sea level rise: It’s worse than we thought

    "The oceans are already rising. Global average sea level rose about 17 centimetres in the 20th century, and the rate of rise is increasing. The biggest uncertainty for those trying to predict future changes is how humanity will behave. Will we start to curb our emissions of greenhouse gases sometime soon, or will we continue to pump ever more into the atmosphere?

    Even if all emissions stopped today, sea level would continue to rise. "The current rate of rise would continue for centuries if temperatures are constant, and that would add about 30 centimetres per century to global sea level," says Stefan Rahmstorf of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research in Germany. "If we burn all fossil fuels, we are likely to end up with many metres of sea level rise in the long run, very likely more than 10 metres in my view."" Eeeesh. At least it makes the setting for my perpetually-unwritten stories more plausible.

    Tagged with: scienceenvironmentglobal-warmingsea-levelicenew-southsea

  2. U.S. soldier sold to Afghan militant clan, official says

    " This soldier and three Afghan soldiers were captured by low-level militants and then quickly "sold" to the clan and network led by warlord Siraj Haqqani — believed to be deeply involved in the action.

    The Haqqanis — who operate on both sides of the Afghanistan-Pakistan border and are well known to the U.S. military — are assembling shuras, or local councils of leaders, to talk and try to "legitimize" what they have done, the official said." As John Robb points out, that's how to run an efficient military machine; outsource to skint locals. Instead of hearts and minds, maybe the US military should be aiming for their wallets.

    Tagged with: warinsurgencyterrorismnetworksmonetizeoutsource

  3. Promises of immortality

    "Even if such treatment eventually becomes available on the NHS, it raises profound questions. Should people's lives be extended indefinitely? If not, should society or the individual choose when to pull the plug? Should a 250-year-old physical teen be treated as an adult and served alcohol or not? Would society take long-term threats, such as the environment, more seriously because people will actually live to see the consequences? Does living so long rob future generations of their right to life? Would you like to live in a society without death?" The more sf-nal the times get, the more sf-nal the questions that journalists ask become. Maybe I should just try to be a journalist…

    Tagged with: scienceimmortalityageingdeathAubrey-De-Greyregeneration

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