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Today’s news: coral reefs to go extinct and glow-in-the-dark cats

September 14, 2011

Here are some fascinating articles that the humans (and animals ) at Current Instincts are reading today. Did we miss something major? Let us know below or send us an email.

1. Blue whales spotted in Southern California. Well the title pretty much says it all, but listening to Brian Williams explain that blue whales – the largest mammal on earth – have been spotted in the waters off Southern California makes the video even better. (MSNBC)

2. Coral reefs will be extinct by the end of the century. A leading United Nations scientists claims that coral reefs are on course to become the first ecosystem destroyed by humans, and it will probably happen by the end of the current century. Now there’s a depressing thought. The author of the study researched the Great Barrier Reef for 20 years, and the projection is based on current climate change and ocean acidification trends. (The Independent)


3. Glowing cats to combat AIDS research. A new strain of green-glowing cats developed by scientists may be a huge step forward in combating the AIDS virus in cats – and could eventually finding a cure for humans as well. The cells that make the cats glow resist infection from the virus. Cats, humans, and some chimpanzees are the only mammals known to suffer from AIDS. (MSNBC)

4. Oil palm plantation puts African rainforest at risk. A U.S. company is planning on building a massive oil palm plantation, claiming it will help local villagers. However, critics argue that the plantation will actually destroy key areas of forest in Cameroon, and leave many species homeless. Many fear that while increased business in Africa will help the economy there, they could also be subjected to deforestation, increased greenhouse gas emissions, biodiversity loss, and more. (Yale 360)

5. Greening the high seas. A company in Japan has started putting all the sunshine and wind out on the ocean to good use by installing solar and wind panels on ships. They ships would be able to use the power while out at sea, or even while sitting in the harbor. (Discovery News)

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