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Is This $13 Billion Food Security Crisis Intrexon's Next Big Opportunity?

Is This $13 Billion Food Security Crisis Intrexon's Next Big Opportunity? A single invasive agricultural pest is laying waste to African crops.


Chinese scientists stuck a mouse gene into pigs to make 12 low-fat piglets

Chinese scientists stuck a mouse gene into pigs to make 12 low-fat piglets Chinese scientists in Beijing say they’ve successfully created a dozen low-fat piglets using gene-editing technology. The researchers rejiggered the piglets’ genes using Crispr-Cas9 to help the animals regulate their body temperatures by burning fat. It’s an application of the technology that could one day help farmers save millions of dollars in pork-production costs. Current agricultural…


Attention, parents: Hackers are now targeting kids at school

Attention, parents: Hackers are now targeting kids at school The Wall Street Journal says more than three dozen school districts across the country have been hit by cyber-thieves who are stealing students' personal information and other data then demanding ransom to get it back.


When Baby Genes Are for Sale, the Rich Will Pay

When Baby Genes Are for Sale, the Rich Will Pay Gene editing could have far-reaching consequences.


Chef John Besh Stepped Down From His Restaurant Company Amid Sexual Harassment Allegations

Chef John Besh Stepped Down From His Restaurant Company Amid Sexual Harassment Allegations 'I alone am entirely responsible for my moral failings.'


We've Already Encountered Alien Intelligence

We've Already Encountered Alien Intelligence Want a glimpse of truly alien intelligence? Watch what happens when machines learn from themselves.


Is Recess Important for Kids or a Waste of Time? Here’s What the Research Says

Is Recess Important for Kids or a Waste of Time? Here’s What the Research Says Parents are fighting back as schools reduce recess to make more time for classes


The Final JFK Assassination Documents Are About to Drop. Here's What to Know

The Final JFK Assassination Documents Are About to Drop. Here's What to Know By law, the last documents on the JFK assassination are to be processed for release by Oct. 26, 2017


Statue of Egyptian Queen Unearthed Near Giza Pyramids

Statue of Egyptian Queen Unearthed Near Giza Pyramids More than 4,000 years ago, ancient Egyptian artisans carved the likeness of a queen into a wooden statue and even bejeweled her highness with wooden earrings, according to a new discovery announced today (Oct. 18) by Egypt’s antiquities ministry. The newly discovered wooden head likely portrays the sixth-dynasty ruler, Queen Ankhnespepy II (also spelled Ankhesenpepi II), the ministry said. The life-size, 12-inch-tall (30 centimeters)wooden head was found in a disturbed layer of Earth near the queen's temple in the Saqqara necropolis by a French and Swiss archaeology team from the University of Geneva.


Extremely Rare Case: Man's Artificial Hip Infected with 'Rabbit Fever'

Extremely Rare Case: Man's Artificial Hip Infected with 'Rabbit Fever' A severe pain in one man's artificial hip joint turned out to be caused by an extremely rare bacterial infection, according to a new report of the man's case. The 77-year-old man's right artificial hip joint was infected with the bacterium Francisella tularensis, which is responsible for a disease called tularemia, according to the case report, published Oct. 11 in the journal BMJ Case Reports. Tularemia is also known as "rabbit fever" or "deer fly fever," because the bacterium can be spread by handling an infected rabbit or being bitten by a deer fly.


VR Experience Takes You into Famed WWII Shipwreck

VR Experience Takes You into Famed WWII Shipwreck A new online, virtual-reality experience will bring you face to face with one of the most famous shipwreck-diving sites in the world: the British freighter SS Thistlegorm. Since the 1990s, the Thistlegorm, with its spectacular sunken cargo, has become one of the most famous wreck-diving sites in the world, said Jon Henderson, a marine archaeologist at the University of Nottingham in the United Kingdom. Henderson is the coordinator of the Thistlegorm Project, a virtual reality tour of the wreck that was released online Oct. 6, exactly 76 years to the day after German bombers sunk the ship.


America's 1,200 Mountain Glaciers Are Shrinking Dramatically, Disturbing Images Reveal

America's 1,200 Mountain Glaciers Are Shrinking Dramatically, Disturbing Images Reveal David Shean, a researcher at the University of Washington in Seattle, has developed a new technique to measure glacier thickness that involves using high-resolution satellite images to track elevation changes. Using this tool, Shean was able to track elevation changes in 1,200 glaciers in the U.S.


When Winter Hits, Tiny Shrews Survive by Decreasing Head Size

When Winter Hits, Tiny Shrews Survive by Decreasing Head Size According to new research, shrews change their size in accordance with the season. The tiny gray mammals can lose 20 percent of their body size in the cold winter months, possibly to conserve energy. Scientists have long known that shrews are bigger in the summer than in the winter, and any careful observer could spot the difference.


CRFB President: Trump Tax Cuts Could Cost Your Kids Dearly

CRFB President: Trump Tax Cuts Could Cost Your Kids Dearly The Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget estimates Trump's tax cuts could add $17,500 per household, $2.2 trillion total, to the debt


The Internet Is Loving That George W. Bush Made Barack Obama Laugh During Bill Clinton's Speech

The Internet Is Loving That George W. Bush Made Barack Obama Laugh During Bill Clinton's Speech "Bush pulling a dad move, cracking a joke to Obama"


Fighting a deadly banana disease

Fighting a deadly banana disease Scientists in Australia are using genetic engineering to try and save the world's banana industry.


‘I Had a Very Respectful Conversation.’ President Trump Denies Forgetting Slain Soldier’s Name While Consoling Widow

‘I Had a Very Respectful Conversation.’ President Trump Denies Forgetting Slain Soldier’s Name While Consoling Widow Trump says he "spoke his name from beginning, without hesitation"


More than 1.3 million demand EU weedkiller ban

More than 1.3 million demand EU weedkiller ban Activists on Monday handed the EU a petition signed by more than 1.3 million people calling for a European ban on the weedkiller glyphosate, produced by chemicals giant Monsanto and others, over fears it causes cancer. The petition was given to the European Commission, the executive of the 28-nation EU which has recommended the license for the herbicide be renewed for ten years in mid-December. "The first action is for the European Commission not to reauthorise glyphosate," Greenpeace EU director Jorgo Riss told reporters after handing the petition to commissioners.


50 Years Ago This Week: Washington's Biggest Peace Protest

50 Years Ago This Week: Washington's Biggest Peace Protest Also in this issue: long hair and KGB spies


Dozens of Packaged Vegetable Products Recalled Amid Listeria Fears

Dozens of Packaged Vegetable Products Recalled Amid Listeria Fears It affects more than 30 products


These two brains both belong to three-year-olds, so why is one so much bigger?

These two brains both belong to three-year-olds, so why is one so much bigger? Take a careful look at the image of two brains on this page. The picture is of the brains of two three-year-old children. It’s obvious that the brain on the left is much bigger than the one on the right. The image on the left also has fewer spots, and far fewer dark “fuzzy” areas. To neurologists who study the brain, and who have worked out how to interpret the images, the difference between these two brains is both remarkable and shocking. The brain on the right lacks some of the most fundamental areas present in the image on the left. Those deficits make it impossible for that child to develop capacities that the child on the left will have: the child on the right will grow into an adult who is less intelligent, less able to empathise with others, more likely to become addicted to drugs and involved in violent crime than the child on the left. The child on the right is much more likely to be unemployed and to be dependent on welfare, and to develop mental and other serious health problems. What could possibly cause so radical a divergence in brain development? The obvious answer is that it must have been some illness or terrible accident. The obvious answer is wrong. he primary cause of the extraordinary difference between the brains of these two three-year-old children is the way they were treated by their mothers. The child with the much more fully developed brain was cherished by its mother, who was constantly and fully responsive to her baby. The child with the shrivelled brain was neglected and abused. That difference in treatment explains why one child’s brain develops fully, and the other’s does not. Neurologists are beginning to understand exactly how a baby’s interaction with their mother determines how, and indeed whether, the brain grows in the way that it should. Professor Allan Schore, of UCLA, who has surveyed the scientific literature and has made significant contributions to it, stresses that the growth of brain cells is a “consequence of an infant’s interaction with the main caregiver [usually the mother]”. The growth of the baby’s brain “literally requires positive interaction between mother and infant. The development of cerebral circuits depends on it.” Prof Schore points out that if a baby is not treated properly in the first two years of life, the genes for various aspects of brain function, including intelligence, cannot operate, and may not even come into existence. Nature and nurture cannot be disentangled: the genes a baby has will be profoundly affected by the way it is treated. The details of how the chemical reactions that are essential to the formation of new brain cells and the connections between them are affected by the way a mother interacts with her baby are extremely technical. Suffice it to say that there is now a very substantial body of evidence that shows that the way a baby is treated in the first two years determines whether or not the resulting adult has a fully functioning brain. The damage caused by neglect and other forms of abuse comes by degrees: the more severe the neglect, the greater the damage. Eighty per cent of brain cells that a person will ever have are manufactured during the first two years after birth. If the process of building brain cells and connections between them goes wrong, the deficits are permanent. This discovery has enormous implications for social policy. It explains two very persistent features of our society. One is the way that chronic disadvantage reproduces itself across generations of the same families. There is a cycle of deprivation – lack of educational attainment, persistent unemployment, poverty, addiction, crime – which, once a family is in it, has proved almost impossible to break. The way that the development of a child’s brain is dependent on the way that the child is treated by its mother explains why this depressing cycle happens. Parents who, because their parents neglected them, do not have fully developed brains, neglect their own children in a similar way: their own children’s brains suffer from the same lack of development that blighted their own lives. They, too, are likely to fail at school, to be liable to get addicted to drugs, to be unable to hold down a job, and to have a propensity to violence. The second persistent feature is the dismal failure of rehabilitation programmes that aim to diminish the rate at which persistent young offenders commit crimes. Many different approaches have been tried, from intensive supervision to taking young offenders on safaris, but none has worked reliably or effectively. Recent research indicates that a large majority – perhaps more than three quarters – of persistent young offenders have brains that have not developed properly. They have, that is, suffered from neglect in the first two years of life, which prevented their brains from growing. As a consequence, they may be incapable of responding to the same incentives and punishments that will steer those with more fully developed brains away from crime. That result may lead you to conclude that nothing can be done about the social problems that result from childhood neglect. But that would be wrong. There is a way to break the cycle, and it is not terribly difficult to achieve. It consists in intervening early and showing mothers who neglect their children how to treat them in a way which will lead their babies’ brains to develop fully. “Early intervention”, as the policy is called, has been tried in parts of the US for more than 15 years. It consists in ensuring that mothers identified as “at risk” of neglecting their babies are given regular visits (at least once every week) by a nurse who instructs them on how to care for the newborn child. Data from the city of Elmira in New York State, where such programmes have been in place longest, show that children whose mothers had received those visits did much better than children from a comparable background whose mothers were not part of the programme: they had, for instance, 50 per cent fewer arrests, 80 per cent fewer convictions, and a significantly lower rate of drug abuse. Graham Allen, the Labour MP for Nottingham North, has been a fervent advocate of introducing early intervention programmes into the UK since at least 2008. That year, he collaborated with Iain Duncan Smith, now Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, on Early Intervention: Good Parents, Great Kids, Better Citizens, a report for the Centre for Social Justice which set out evidence that the neglect of children in the first two years of life damages the development of their brains. The report also looked at the social problems that resulted, and examined the effects that early intervention could have in helping to solve those problems. Mr Allen’s own constituency is one of the most deprived in England: it has the highest rates of teenage pregnancy in Europe, and one of the lowest rates of participation in higher education. “There is no doubt that early intervention can make a tremendous contribution to improving our society,” Mr Allen says. “Not the least benefit is the financial one. The amount it saves taxpayers, by reducing benefits, by cutting care home places for kids who would otherwise have to be taken from their parents, by reducing prison places, and so on, is staggering.” Andrea Leadsom, the Conservative MP for South Northamptonshire, agrees. She is a passionate advocate of early intervention programmes. “I know they work because I have seen them in operation”, she says. “I helped to run an early intervention centre in Oxford, one of the first early intervention programmes in England. I have helped to institute such programmes in Northamptonshire. I can bear witness to the astonishing benefits. "The biggest problem at the moment is that the programmes are far too small. In Oxford, the centre sees perhaps 300 babies a year. But there are 17,000 babies born in Oxford every year, which means there are 34,000 babies in Oxford in the first two years of life who might benefit from the programme. "We need central Government to get behind early intervention so that it happens on a big enough scale everywhere.” Frank Field, the Labour MP for Birkenhead, is another passionate advocate of early intervention. He has also introduced small-scale schemes in his own constituency, and is working hard to find ways to get such schemes adopted more widely. There is a remarkable cross-party consensus that early intervention is a vitally important policy which needs to be supported nationally. Both David Cameron and Ed Miliband have endorsed early intervention, and insisted that it should be implemented. But nothing is happening to make sure that it is. “Quite the opposite,” notes Mr Allen. “The funding I thought was earmarked for it is being taken away. The plans that I have put forward are being hollowed out.” “It’s crazy,” adds Mrs Leadsom. “This is a policy that has the potential to transform our society, to mean that the next generation of babies will grow into more responsible, less crime-prone, and better educated adults. "We know what needs to be done to get those results: we need to ensure that mothers who are at risk of neglecting or abusing their babies in the first two years of life are instructed how to care for them and interact with them properly. But no one in central government is pushing it. In fact, they’re taking away the early intervention grant in order to pay for the pupil premium for two-year-olds.” Frank Field is just as depressed about the prospects of getting early intervention adopted by the Government. “The Prime Minister asked me to write a report on early intervention,” he says. “My hopes were up when I delivered it several weeks ago. But as far as I can tell, he hasn’t even read it.” What explains the failure to adopt early intervention programmes nationally? The greatest obstacle may simply be that the biggest benefits will not be obvious for 15 years. The babies who benefit from early intervention today will take more than a decade to grow into teenagers who do not commit the crimes they would have perpetrated had their mothers not been helped by an early intervention programme. Elections, however, are every five years. That means the benefits will not accrue to the politicians in power now, but to their successors – which could be why those in power now are reluctant to expend effort and money on early intervention programmes. “I hope that isn’t true,” says Graham Allen. “Because if it is, it would mean we are politically incapable of implementing the one policy that will certainly make our society immeasurably better. And what more profound condemnation of our political system could there be than that?”


Scientists find blood molecule that attracts wolves, repels humans

Scientists find blood molecule that attracts wolves, repels humans The faintest whiff of a molecule from mammal blood known as E2D sends some animals into a predatory frenzy but frightens others -- including people -- into retreat, scientists have discovered. Never before has the same molecule been known to provoke diametrically opposite behaviours in creatures ranging from horse flies to humans, hinting at deep evolutionary roots, they reported in the journal Scientific Reports. "The odour of blood is characterised by a rare universality," senior author Johan Lundstrom, a biologist at the Karolinska Institute in Sweden, told AFP.


Three Star Trek technologies about to become reality will help us leapfrog our biggest limitations

Three Star Trek technologies about to become reality will help us leapfrog our biggest limitations When you were young, what did you dream of when you looked to the future? Did it have anything to do with the exploration of the unknown? Of pushing back the frontiers and limits of our knowledge? Of discovering new worlds, new forms of life, or even entirely new civilizations? When the original Star Trek…


China Is Creating a Database of Its Citizens' Voices to Boost its Surveillance Capability: Report

China Is Creating a Database of Its Citizens' Voices to Boost its Surveillance Capability: Report The move coincides with a broad clamp down on dissent


Fusion Energy: How Scientists Are Creating Plasma Hotter Than the Sun in Quest for Limitless Clean Energy

Fusion Energy: How Scientists Are Creating Plasma Hotter Than the Sun in Quest for Limitless Clean Energy In a study published in Nature Physics in June, John Wright, from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and colleagues showed how they had developed a new way to heat fusion plasma in tokamaks. Fusion energy uses the same principles as how the sun is powered. The technique involves three ion species—hydrogen, deuterium and helium-3.


Japan's Shinzo Abe Conjures Stunning Election Victory in a Boost for Donald Trump

Japan's Shinzo Abe Conjures Stunning Election Victory in a Boost for Donald Trump The Japanese prime minister bonded with Trump over reining in North Korea


Ports, Pipelines, and Geopolitics: China's New Silk Road Is a Challenge for Washington

Ports, Pipelines, and Geopolitics: China's New Silk Road Is a Challenge for Washington China's Belt and Road Initiative stands to boost Beijing's geopolitical clout as the U.S. retreats from its global leadership role


John McCain Takes a Veiled Swipe at Donald Trump's Medical Exemption From the Vietnam War

John McCain Takes a Veiled Swipe at Donald Trump's Medical Exemption From the Vietnam War The president's medical deferrals from the war have been frequently criticized


Rex Tillerson Seeks Help From Arab Nations in the U.S. Effort to Isolate Iran

Rex Tillerson Seeks Help From Arab Nations in the U.S. Effort to Isolate Iran In visits to Saudi Arabia and Qatar, Tillerson denounced Iran's "malign behavior"


The Spanish Prime Minister Has Moved Aggressively to Crush Catalonia's Independence Bid

The Spanish Prime Minister Has Moved Aggressively to Crush Catalonia's Independence Bid A previously untapped section of the constitution allows Madrid to intervene in the running of a region if its leaders have broken the law


Japanese Prime Minister Abe Wins Big In National Elections

Japanese Prime Minister Abe Wins Big In National Elections The prime minister's gamble on snap elections paid off in a big way: a two-thirds majority in parliament


Technology takeover in the kitchen

Technology takeover in the kitchen Has artificial intelligence gone too far?


'It was going to eat her' - Aussie teen survives shark scare

'It was going to eat her' - Aussie teen survives shark scare An Australian teenager has survived a terrifying encounter with a great white shark, with her harrowing screams alerting her father who was certain it was about to "eat her". Sarah Williams, 15, was fishing for squid from a kayak off the South Australian coast near Normanville on Sunday when the shark struck. "This shark has just rolled and all I saw was the dark side and the white belly and just huge fins and just white water everywhere," he told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation on Monday.


Transgender fish filmed changing sex for BBC’s Blue Planet II

Transgender fish filmed changing sex for BBC’s Blue Planet II Mating is never easy when you have an unsightly bulbous appendage protruding from your head. But the male Asian Sheepshead Wrasse has even greater problems to contend with. The female wrasse is endowed with the extraordinary ability to unexpectedly switch gender, a change which not only scuppers any burgeoning relationship with the male but also creates another headache for him - a new love rival. The gender-bending ability of the wrasse has been captured in detail for the first time for BBC Blue Planet II which airs on Sunday. The female kobudai (left) becomes even bigger than the male after transforming  Credit:  Tony Wu Scientists believe the female wrasse makes the switch because she can pass on more genes as a male, although it is unclear why some change while others remain female. It is just one of dozens of filming and scientific firsts captured over four years by the production team who also recorded huge flying fish which snatch birds from the sky, boiling seas, and  armour clad octopuses. A giant trevally leaps from the water to catch a tern in flight  Credit: BBC  Sir David Attenborough, who narrates the new series, said he was most impressed with new footage showing the efforts of the male anemone fish. “There have been a lot of really important scientific discoveries,” he told The Telegraph. “There’s a little anemone fish off the reef living in the sand that is surrounded by dangers but it finds refuge in the tentacles of an anemone, because it alone is immune to their poison. “But the female has to lay eggs, and she can’t do that on the soft tentacles of an anemone. So the little male goes around trying to find something where she could lay safely. “He finds an empty coconut shell, but the trouble is it’s miles away from the safety of the anemone. So he decides he’s going pull the thing all the way back. So he struggles with it, and the triumph on his little face when he does.” Filming The new series comes sixteen years after the original Blue Planet aired, and filmmakers have taken advantage of the latest marine science and cutting-edge technology to mount 125 expeditions across 39 countries, and spent more than 6,000 hours diving. The crews managed to film animal behaviour that until now has been rejected as just sailors myths. Two minutes with legendary nature presenter Sir David Attenborough 02:12 Mark Brownlow, Series Producer, said: “What’s exciting is we are working with scientists and we are helping them further their science. “Often the logistics is too massive for them to independently launch their own expedition but by collaborating we work together. “A really good example is the common octopus near Cape Town and when this octopus feels threatened it picks up stones, and shells on the seabed and wraps them around itself and it seems to be a protective coat. “Not only does it camouflage but it actually seems to be using the shells as a shield and we filmed that for the first time.” Blue Planet II : The Prequel 05:06 The team said the programmes were the most authentic ever, after the BBC Natural History Unit has faced criticism in the past for filming footage in zoos rather than in the natural world. Sir David said: “To say that we are distorting natural history would be absurd. However we wouldn’t do that now, I don’t think, because we are being very very meticulous to be correct and not in anyway misleading. “We do our best to be as honest as we can, and the Natural History Unit is extremely careful about constructing stories from too many sources.” False Killer Whales travelling with a pod of oceanic Bottlenose dolphins off the coast of the North Island, New Zealand Credit: Richard Robinson BBC  James Honeybourne, Executive Producer, added: It’s very important to us that we are true to nature. “We are very honest about all the techniques we use to create that, to tell as story. If you film something that’s microscopic you have to put added light on it, that’s just the simple laws of physics. “We don’t want to point that out in every episode you don’t want to break the spell, but we want to be upfront about that.” Blue Planet IIstarts Sunday 29 October 8pm on BBC One.


Elon Musk wants to whisk you from NYC to DC in 30 minutes with a new Hyperloop

Elon Musk wants to whisk you from NYC to DC in 30 minutes with a new Hyperloop Elon Musk revealed in July that he had received verbal government approval for The Boring Company to build an underground system that will take commuters from New York to Philadelphia to Baltimore to Washington, D.C.


NASA decides to hang out at dwarf planet Ceres just a little while longer

NASA decides to hang out at dwarf planet Ceres just a little while longer With its hardware already right where it needs to be, NASA has decided it wants to extend its Dawn mission, which will bring its spacecraft extremely close to the surface of one of the most interesting objects in our Solar System that isn't a planet. NASA has so many spacecraft making groundbreaking discoveries around the solar system that it can actually be hard to keep track of them all, so you'd be forgiven if the name Dawn sounds new. The space agency's Dawn mission began in earnest in early 2015 when its observational spacecraft reached Ceres, the large dwarf planet hanging out in the asteroid belt situated between Mars and Jupiter. Now, the spacecraft is going to perform its most daring move. In its extended mission, the Dawn craft may get the opportunity to get up-close-and-personal with Ceres. NASA is considering different flight plans that could bring the machine within 120 miles from the surface of the dwarf planet, which is incredibly close. During this extra mission time, the Dawn team plans to capture lots of images of the rocky world in the visible light spectrum in order to study its geology. Likewise, the craft's various instruments will continue to capture and send back valuable data that researchers will no doubt be excited to examine. "The Dawn team is currently refining its plans for this next and final chapter of the mission," NASA says. "Because of its commitment to protect Ceres from Earthly contamination, Dawn will not land or crash into Ceres. Instead, it will carry out as much science as it can in its final planned orbit, where it will stay even after it can no longer communicate with Earth. Mission planners estimate the spacecraft can continue operating until the second half of 2018."


Astronomers measure Milky Way with radio waves

Astronomers measure Milky Way with radio waves ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — A collection of radio telescopes that spans thousands of miles and is remotely operated from central New Mexico has measured a span of 66,000 light-years (one light-year is equal to 6 trillion miles) from Earth across the Milky Way's center to a star-forming area near the edge of the other side of the galaxy.


Einstein's theory of happy living emerges in Tokyo note

Einstein's theory of happy living emerges in Tokyo note A note that Albert Einstein gave to a courier in Tokyo, briefly describing his theory on happy living, has surfaced after 95 years and is up for auction in Jerusalem. The year was 1922, and the German-born physicist, most famous for his theory of relativity, was on a lecture tour in Japan. A Japanese courier arrived at the Imperial Hotel in Tokyo to deliver Einstein a message.


Coral reefs in Florida Keys hit hard this hurricane season, but there are signs of recovery

Coral reefs in Florida Keys hit hard this hurricane season, but there are signs of recovery Out on the water's surface, floating above the site of a coral nursery was the first sign of trouble: a tangled mass of line, buoys, lobster traps, and debris.  A coral restoration team from Florida's Mote Marine Laboratory was checking on its underwater nursery for the first time since Hurricane Irma brought 140-mph winds to the Keys, and things didn't look promising. The team of scientists grows coral, which is then planted out on reefs decimated by global warming and other human abuses. SEE ALSO: Before and after photos show Hurricane Irma's devastation in the Caribbean "Right off the bat we thought, 'Oh it's going to be completely destroyed," said Erich Bartels, a Mote staff scientist. While the infrastructure, including the PVC trees where corals hang like drying laundry, survived the storm, much of the vibrant coral within the 60-by-80 meter site did not. Whipped up sand and tangled fishing gear had harmed the delicate coral. A staghorn coral tree prior to Irma.Image: Joe Berg / Way Down Video via Mote Marine Labaratory  A coral tree post-Irma.Image: Erich Bartels/Mote Marine Laboratory The Category 4 storm left the Florida Keys bruised and battered in early September, but it's not just the land, and its buildings, roads, and trees, that took a beating. Under the sea, the depleted coral reefs are also worse for wear, along with the underwater nurseries conservationists are growing in hopes of replenishing the Keys' once healthy reefs. The reefs are vital for the Florida coastline because the calcium carbonate structures act as a buffer from powerful waves. They're also important for the economy, as the sea life the reefs support helps feed the state and reel in tourists.  Globally, restoring coral reefs is taking on new urgency as more frequent and severe coral bleaching events kill reefs that are less tolerant of unusually high water temperatures.  "We can only begin to imagine how much more severely Irma would have damaged the Florida Keys without our coral reef shield," Mote's public relations manager Shelby Isaacson wrote in an email. Significant amounts of lobster trap lines got tangled in the Mote Marine Laboratory's coral trees, snagging other debris such as uprooted mangrove roots.Image: Erich Bartels/Mote Marine LaboratoryRestoration groups like Mote and the Coral Restoration Foundation (CRF), which had evacuated the area before landfall, are just starting to get back to work and do preliminary assessments of their nurseries and the reefs they support.  "It’s been tough to go back and see some of the reefs, because they’ve just been completely changed," said Jessica Levy, reef restoration program manager at the Coral Restoration Foundation (CRF). "The sites that we’ve seen are pretty barren, they've lost out-planted corals, they've lost natural corals, a lot of the soft corals. We’ve seen the ledge of the reef just collapse." A coral tree entangled in debris.Image: Erich Bartels/Mote Marine Laboratory The distinct line of bright, white reef was exposed during the hurricane.Image: Jessica Levy/Coral Restoration Foundation While the coral at the Mote nursery off Big Pine Key saw high mortality, two of CRF's underwater nurseries off Tavernier and Key Largo fared better. Still, CRF doesn't know the fate of two other production nurseries farther south because weather conditions have made it difficult to check.  Coral restoration groups have been working for years in Florida to combat decades of damage to the reefs, some of it, like coral bleaching, caused by climate change, some by overfishing, anchoring, polluting, and pathogens. Similar restoration projects are happening around the globe, and perhaps the most well-known is set along Australia's Great Barrier Reef, large swaths of which have been left bone-white and stricken with disease due to rising water temperatures. This was the first time both Mote and CRF's nurseries faced such a powerful storm. They had weathered tropical storms before, but nothing like Irma. The fact that their infrastructure survived, even if all the corals didn't, was heartening. "We were in the direct path of the eye, we were in what they call the 'dirty side.' It was about as big of a test that we could be given," Bartels said.  Mote scientists and volunteers planted 500 Staghorn Coral on Hope Reef on June 27, 2017, a few months before Irma hit.Image: Conor Goulding/Mote Marine LaboratoryAnother bright spot for Mote was its Summerland Key land-based nursery and gene bank, which opened this year and was built to resist Category 5 storms. The Elizabeth Moore International Center for Coral Reef Research & Restoration protected 30,000 coral fragments from the storm.  The coral living in shallow, long water tanks called raceways outside the facility were brought indoors just before Irma. Generators helped control the temperatures so the coral did not get exposed to hot water that could cause coral bleaching. While equipment left outside got beat up, the building — and coral sheltered inside — survived. A tray of coral fragments growing in one of Mote's outdoor raceways.Image: Mote Marine Laboratory Damage seen outside Mote's land-based nursery.Image: Mote marine laboratory David Vaughan, executive director of Mote's Elizabeth Moore International Center for Coral Reef Research & Restoration, dives in a tank fixing coral fragments after Irma.Image: Mote Marine LaboratoryMote had aimed to plant 25,000 of its nursery corals on reefs this year, while CRF planned for 10,000. Both projects may be delayed a bit due to the hurricane, but the organizations are still optimistic about accomplishing their goals.  "I think at this point this work is needed now more than ever because we’ve seen what storms like this can do," Levy said. "This isn’t like we took a hit, we’re gonna stop. It's we took a hit, and we’re gonna keep going." Both Mote and Coral Restoration Foundation are fundraising to rebuild after Irma.  WATCH: 5-foot robotic snake is designed to find the source of pollution in contaminated water  


China Races to Catch Up to SpaceX

China Races to Catch Up to SpaceX But how do you beat a company that launches half the world's satellites?


L.L. Bean rebuffs boycott over granddaughter’s big Trump donation

L.L. Bean rebuffs boycott over granddaughter’s big Trump donation A man wipes off the headlights of the L.L. Bean Bootmobile in the parking lot at the facility where the famous outdoor boot is made. L.L. Bean is pushing back against a boycott led by a group urging consumers not to shop at retailers that support President-elect Donald Trump after it was revealed that Linda Bean, heir of the Maine-based company’s founder, had donated to a political action committee that helped elect Trump. “We are deeply troubled by the portrayal of L.L. Bean as a supporter of any political agenda,” Shawn Gorman, L.L. Bean’s executive chairman, said in a statement posted to Facebook late Sunday.


Union leader who says Trump lied about Carrier deal refuses to back down

Union leader who says Trump lied about Carrier deal refuses to back down Trump tours a Carrier factory in Indianapolis, Dec. 1, 2016. Chuck Jones, the union leader who claims President-elect Donald Trump lied to Carrier employees while touting a deal to keep jobs in the U.S., says he started receiving harassing phone calls a half hour after Trump slammed him on Twitter. “I’ve been doing this job for 30 years,” Jones, president of the United Steelworkers Local 1999, told CNN on Thursday morning.


Working, eating and sleeping at the office

Working, eating and sleeping at the office The sight of workers sleeping on the job is common in China, where a surplus of cheap labor can lead to downtime and employees at startup companies work long hours.


Obama seeks ‘irreversible’ opening to Cuba

Obama seeks ‘irreversible’ opening to Cuba This story is part of a weeklong Yahoo series marking one year since the opening of relations between the United States and Cuba.


The Last Days Of Streit's, New York's Jewish Willy Wonka Factory

Photographer Joseph O. Holmes photographs the last days of the 90-year-old Manhattan matzo factory. Located on Rivington Street on Manhattan's Lower East Side, Streit's Matzo Factory has been pumping out as much as 900 pounds of matzo an hour to feed New York's Jewish community for almost a century. After 90 years, though, Streit's is closing-up shop, shutting down its Manhattan factory and ...

Propeller kills factory worker

A 26-year-old factory worker was killed when he was hit by a propeller when the machine he was cleaning reportedly got switched on unintentionally.

Union might postpone vote seeking to organize Boeing's South Carolina plant

By Alwyn Scott NORTH CHARLESTON, South Carolina (Reuters) - Labor union officials say they could postpone a vote seeking to organize 3,000 workers at Boeing Co's factory here in South Carolina if their campaign fails to gain enough traction against fierce opposition from the company and local politicians. Organizers for the International Association of Machinists (IAM) are going door-to-door ...

Union might postpone vote seeking to organise Boeing's South Carolina plant

Labour union officials say they could postpone a vote seeking to organise 3,000 workers at Boeing Co's factory here in South Carolina if their campaign fails to gain enough traction against fierce opposition from the company and local politicians.     Organizers for the International Association of Machinists (IAM) are going door-to-door this week to gauge backing for the April 22 vote, and to ...

Film industry hopes Wednesday rally makes government ‘rethink’ tax credit cut

A film industry rep is expecting one of the biggest rallies in the province’s history Wednesday as talks between the industry and government on the film tax credit continue. Screen Nova Scotia chair, Marc Almon, and other industry members met … Continue Reading

Nova Scotia film industry hopeful about tax credit after meeting with government

Nova Scotia's film industry maintained pressure Tuesday on the provincial government over a change to its film tax credit, although the sides emerged from a meeting with different interpretations over a potential compromise. Key industry players expressed some optimism, describing a two-hour meeting with Finance Minister Diana Whalen and her officials as productive. Screen Nova Scotia chairman ...