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Bill Gates Won’t Save You From The Next Ebola

 Illustration of screens showing patients in a ward for Ebola patients. JI SUB JEONG/HUFFPOST

Image: Illustration of screens showing patients in a ward for Ebola patients. JI SUB JEONG/HUFFPOST

huffingtonpost.com - April 30th 2017 - Robert Fortner, Alex Park

In late August 2014, Tom Frieden, then director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, traveled to West Africa to assess the raging Ebola crisis.

In the five months before Frieden’s visit, Ebola had spread from a village in Guinea, across borders and into cities in Liberia and Sierra Leone. Médecins Sans Frontières, the first international responder on the scene, had run out of staff to treat the rising numbers of sick people and had deemed the outbreak “out of control” back in June.

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What Happens If a Nuclear Bomb Goes Off in Manhattan?

Manhatten skyline. Lucas Jackson / Reuters

Image: Manhatten skyline. Lucas Jackson / Reuters

theatlantic.com - March 15th 2017 - Kaveh Waddell

On a quiet afternoon, two medium-sized nuclear blasts level portions of Manhattan.

If this were a movie, hordes of panicked New Yorkers would pour out into the streets, running around and calling out for their loved ones. But reality doesn’t usually line up with Hollywood’s vision of a disaster scene, says William Kennedy, a professor in the Center for Social Complexity at George Mason University. 

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The Goose-Killing Lake and the Scientists Who Study It

The toxic lake left behind after the Berkeley Pit copper mine shut down.

Image: The toxic lake left behind after the Berkeley Pit copper mine shut down.

theatlantic.com - 13 December 2016 - Sarah Zhang

In late November, a flock of migrating snow geese landed in a lake in Butte, Montana. Soon, they began to die. Because what they landed in was the Berkeley Pit, a Superfund site filled with acidic and metal-laden toxic waste from copper mining. 

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The Mystery of Zika’s Path to the Placenta

A photograph of a baby wearing a diaper. Jerome Scholler / Shutterstock

Image: A photograph of a baby wearing a diaper. Jerome Scholler / Shutterstock

theatlantic.com - August 18th 2016 - Adrienne LaFrance

Among the many mysteries that have vexed scientists about the ongoing Zika epidemic is the question of how, in pregnant women, the virus manages to cross the maternal-fetal barrier.

A woman’s body is usually quite good at protecting her growing baby. There are biological blockades to prevent the transmission of viruses to a fetus through the bloodstream, by way of the placenta; the same path for the nutrients and oxygen that sustain a developing baby.

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Chernobyl's legacy 30 years on

Image: Dr Rachel Furley (centre) with members of the Kartuzovi family, one of the many families her charity helps.

bbc.com - April 26th 2016 - Tom Burridge

Children are still being born with severe birth defects and rare types of cancer in areas near to Chernobyl, according to a British charity, three decades on from the world's worst civil nuclear disaster.

The accident on 26 April 1986 contributed to the downfall of the Soviet Union, changed the way the world thinks about nuclear energy and has affected an unquantifiable number of people in the region.

For British paediatrician Dr Rachel Furley, the "desperately sad" reality is that women who have spent their entire lives exposed to high levels of radiation are now having children. 

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Dr. Campbell: Zika virus much worse than initially feared

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared a Zika emergency. From 2007 to 2016 there are cases in 62 countries and the numbers are only increasing.

Published: April 18, 2016, 5:00 am

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Health needs from humanitarian emergencies at an all-time high

 WHO and partners need US$ 2.2 billion to provide lifesaving health services to more than 79 million people in more than 30 countries facing protracted emergencies this year, according to WHO’s Humanitarian Response Plans 2016 launched today.

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White House to transfer Ebola funds to combat Zika virus

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Obama administration is to announce Wednesday it will transfer leftover money from the largely successful fight against Ebola to combat the growing threat of the Zika virus, congressional officials say.

Roughly 75 percent of the $600 million or so would be devoted to the Centers for Disease Control, which is focused on research and development of anti-Zika vaccines, treating those infected with the virus and combating the mosquitoes that spread it. The rest would go to foreign aid accounts to fight the virus overseas.

The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to publicly discuss the matter before the White House announcement.

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Foreign nationals from Ebola-affected countries can stay 6 more months

The Obama administration said Tuesday it will allow foreign nationals from Ebola-affected countries in West Africa to stay in the U.S. for another six months, even though global health officials said the outbreak that killed 11,000 people abroad is officially over.

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The Geopolitics of Cheap Oil

             

THE WASHINGTON POST VIA GETTY IMAGES

huffingtonpost.com - by John Feffer - January 7, 2016

The market was supposed to save the planet.

That, at least, was the argument of many economists grappling with the problem of climate change. As fossil fuels became scarcer, they pointed out, the price of oil and natural gas would go up. And then other options, like solar and wind, would become cheaper, particularly as investment flowed into that sector and drove down the cost of new technologies.

And voila: The invisible hand would gradually turn down the global thermostat.

It’s a ridiculous argument.

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