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Posts Tagged ‘US’

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Oil and Coal Could Cost US $30 Trillion By 2030 Says Study

Oil WellAmerica’s economy and quality of life as we know it is at risk, according to a new study released by Environment America. The study claims that “big oil and dirty coal” could cost the United States $30 trillion dollars by 2030, four times the earnings of American workers in 2007 alone. According to the study, 85 percent of America’s energy is supplied by fossil fuels. American consumers and businesses spent 7 percent, or $921 billion, of the nation’s GDP on fossil fuels, more than the total spent on education or the military. Full Story : DigitalJournal.com….

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Have Chinese Spies Hacked into the U.S. Power Grid?

electric-gridThe electric-utility industry is planning a pilot initiative to see whether Chinese spies have infiltrated computer networks running the power grid, according to people familiar with the effort. Officials of the North American Electric Reliability Corp., an industry regulatory group, are negotiating with a defense contractor for the job of searching for breaches by cyberspies, according to people familiar with the plans. NERC is completing plans for the pilot program as it launches a separate, broader initiative to evaluate power companies’ ability to withstand cyber attacks. The industry has sought to bolster computer-system security as public and congressional scrutiny of its potential vulnerability has grown. Full Story : WSJ.com….

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US obesity problem ‘intensifies’

ObesityObesity rates in the US have surged over the last year, a report shows. The Trust for America’s Health (TFAH) and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation found adult obesity rates rose in 23 of the 50 states, but fell in none. In addition, the percentage of obese and overweight children is at or above 30% in 30 states. Obesity is linked to a range of health problems, including heart disease, stroke and type 2 diabetes. Full Story : BBC.co.uk….

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U.S. combat troops to withdraw from Iraq cities

iraq-flagU.S. combat troops prepared to leave the last of Iraq’s cities on Tuesday, a move hailed by Iraqi authorities as restoring sovereignty and applauded by Iraqis even though they fear it may leave them more vulnerable. By midnight on Tuesday, all U.S. combat units must have withdrawn from Iraq’s urban centres and redeployed to bases outside, according to a bilateral security pact that also requires all U.S. troops to leave Iraq by the end of 2011. The last U.S. combat troops left central Baghdad on Monday, withdrawing to two large bases near the capital’s airport, and withdrawals from other cities were underway. Some troops tasked with training and advising Iraqi forces will stay behind. Full Story : Reuters.com….

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Detroit gains some ground in auto quality

gm-auto makerThe marketing and consulting company J.D. Power and Associates’ closely watched annual study of vehicle quality found Monday that Ford, General Motors and Chrysler made strides last year but still lag behind their foreign competitors. The survey measures mechanical and design problems that show up in the first 90 days of ownership. The 2009 models turned out by the Detroit Three improved by an average of 10 percent, compared with an industry average of 8 percent. Full Story : WashingtonPost.com….

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Study Indicates Wind Speeds Are Slowing in the U.S.

offshore-windfarmThe wind appears to be dying down across the United States, according to a first-of-its-kind study that indicates that average and peak winds have been slowing since 1973, particularly in the Midwest and the East. The study‚Äôs lead author, Sara Pryor, an atmospheric scientist at Indiana University, also noted in the article that there has been a jump of low or no wind days in the Midwest. Full Story : Environmentalleader.com….

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US House clears $106 bln war funding, Senate next

dollar-stack cashThe $106-billion war funding bill, approved 226 to 202, posed the toughest test yet of President Obama’s ability to rally his party’s left wing, which views his foreign and military policies as too hawkish. Most of the money, $80 billion, will go to the Pentagon for military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. The bill also includes $400 million for helping train Pakistani military personnel in counterinsurgency tactics. More than $2 billion was included in the bill for eight additional Boeing C-17 cargo planes, despite efforts by the Obama administration to end production. Full Story : LATimes.com….

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CIA chief believes Cheney almost wants US attacked

Dick CheneyCIA director Leon Panetta says it’s almost as if former vice president Dick Cheney would like to see another attack on the United States to prove he is right in criticizing President Barack Obama for abandoning the “harsh interrogation” of terrorism suspects. “I think he smells some blood in the water on the national security issue,” Panetta said in an interview published in The New Yorker magazine’s June 22 issue. “It’s almost, a little bit, gallows politics. When you read behind it, it’s almost as if he’s wishing that this country would be attacked again, in order to make his point.” Full Story : Reuters.com…

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Obama Launches US Ocean Protection Plan

Under Sea CableThough it’s in the early stages of development, Obama announced he’s creating an Ocean Protection Plan that will provide a comprehensive national policy for protecting seas, coastal areas, and the Great Lakes. Here’s how he’s going to do it. It’s been called one of Obama’s biggest environmental challenges, but evidently he feels up for the task. With a water crisis looming, making efficient use of our oceans is more important than ever. Full Story : Treehugger.com….

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US cities may have to be bulldozed in order to survive

us-cityDozens of US cities may have entire neighbourhoods bulldozed as part of drastic “shrink to survive” proposals being considered by the Obama administration to tackle economic decline. The government looking at expanding a pioneering scheme in Flint, one of the poorest US cities, which involves razing entire districts and returning the land to nature. The radical experiment is the brainchild of Dan Kildee, treasurer of Genesee County, which includes Flint. Full Story : Telegraph.co.uk….

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Global arms spending rises with US, China leading the way

gunsWorld governments spent a record $1.46 trillion on upgrading their armed forces last year despite the economic downturn, with China climbing to second place behind top military spender the United States, a Swedish research group said Monday. Global military spending was 4 percent higher than in 2007 and up 45 percent from a decade ago, the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, or SIPRI, said in its annual report. Full Story : Taragana.com….

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Medical Bills Are Found Linked to Most Bankruptcies

pills-medicineSome 62% of all bankruptcies filed in 2007 were due in part to medical expenses, according to a new study. Even more striking: 78% of those individuals had insurance. Most people hit by such bankruptcies were considered middle-class, college-educated and owned homes, according to the study published online by the American Journal of Medicine. By the time they filed bankruptcy, those without insurance reported average medical bills of $26,971 and those with insurance, expenses of $17,749. Full Story : WSJ.com….

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U.S. Accidentally Releases Secret List of Nuclear Sites

iran-nuclear-plantThe federal government mistakenly made public a 266-page report, its pages marked ‚Äúhighly confidential,‚Äù that gives detailed information about hundreds of the nation‚Äôs civilian nuclear sites and programs, including maps showing the precise locations of stockpiles of fuel for nuclear weapons. The publication of the document was revealed Monday in an online newsletter devoted to issues of federal secrecy. Full Story : NYtimes.com….

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African-Americans are more vulnerable to welfare penalties

African Americans are significantly more likely to be sanctioned by the United States welfare system than whites, according to research published in the June issue of the American Sociological Review, the flagship journal of the American Sociological Association. In a study led by sociologist Sanford F. Schram, a team of researchers conducted a multi-pronged analysis to determine how and why race influences sanctioning under welfare reform in the United States. The study combined real-life data from the Florida Welfare Transition program and experimental data from a survey in which case workers were asked to make sanctioning decisions based on hypothetical scenarios. Full Story : EurekaAlert.org…..

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New poll: Obama is up, Congress way down

obamaPresident Obama has more than double the approval ratings of Democratic congressional leaders, and triple the positives of the Republican Party, according to a new National Research 2000 poll. The poll was taken during a week when Obama made his most important appointment to date, the nomination of U.S. Court of Appeals Judge Sonia Sotomayor to the U.S. Supreme Court. It found 67 percent of Americans with a favorable opinion of Obama with just 29 percent in the unfavorable category, a figure that has remained largely unchanged for weeks. Full Story : Seattlepi.com……

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North Korea may launch long-range missile in weeks

dong-feng-missileNorth Korea may this month test a missile designed to fly as far as U.S. territory and may also be gearing up for skirmishes with the South around their disputed sea border, South Korean news reports said on Monday. Last week, North Korea conducted a nuclear test that put it closer to having a working atomic bomb, test-fired a barrage of short-range missiles and threatened to attack the South, raising tension to one of its highest levels since the 1950-53 Korean War. Full Story : YahooNews…..

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China to Impose Stricter Gas Mileage Rules Than U.S

beijing-trafficThe president of China’s Innovation Center for Energy and Transportation has said that Chinese officials are drafting new mileage standards that would require an 18 percent improvement in fuel economy by 2015. New cars in China already average about 35.8 mpg and under the new rules, would be required to get 42.2 mpg by 2015. The new U.S. standards require an average mgp of 35.5 by 2016. Full Story : EcoGeek.com…..

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Californians traveling to Mexico for healthcare

mexico flagNearly a million Californians seek cheaper medical care, dental care, and prescriptions in Mexico each year according to research by UCLA. The research showed that both immigrants and lifetime residents alike cross into Mexico for their healthcare. The study, published in the journal Medical Care, reported that an estimated 952,000 adult Californians cross the border each year; 488,000 are Mexican immigrants. Full Story : Vdailypress.com…..

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Iran’s Ahmadinejad invites Obama to debate at UN

ahmadinijad-iranMonday, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad invited U.S. President Barack Obama for a debate at the United Nations. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, said “Earlier, I had invited U.S. ex-president George W. Bush to participate in a live debate with him in the United Nations. If I am elected by the great Iranian nation (as president in the upcoming presidential elections), I will repeat my invitation to Mr. Obama to have a debate in the UN to study the origin of the global issues and the management of the world for international peace.”What he will not debate, however, is Iran’s nuclear program. Ahmadinejad said discussion on that issue is over.Full Story : Xinhua.net…..

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Microsoft blocks Messenger in US-embargoed countries

Microsoft this week decided to turn off its Windows Live Messenger service for five countries: Cuba, Syria, Iran, Sudan, and North Korea. All five of these countries have a few things in common, but the one that apparently concerns Microsoft is that the US has put embargoes on each of them. Users in these countries get the following error: “810003c1: We were unable to sign you in to the .NET Messenger Service.” Full Story : ArsTechnica.com….

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