Vitamin D and the Power of the Sun

 

Despite being mid-February, the early morning sun today is strong, illuminating the gold of the witch hazel blossom and the grey-blue of the waters of the Wye. In response to his call, the birds sing loudly in celebration of the light and of life, while frogs and newts begin their annual courtship dances in their ponds.

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Space Debris Equals Human Debris

Researchers are highlighting the impact of space debris on Earth in an important reminder of a serious hidden danger.

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The Future of Humanity

Last night, on the evening news, I saw a large driverless lorry filmed in America speeding along a major highway transporting beer from one city to another. It made me think – hard.

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Stones

 

The mystery of stones is often forgotten, and it is our loss that we allow this to be so.

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How a Pig Proves the Truth of a Greek Myth

In California, a pig whose genes have been manipulated to prevent the development of its normal pancreas has been injected with human cells in an experiment to make it grow an organ suitable for a human transplant. The pig is known as a chimera.

Pigs for Research

Pigs used for University Research

In Greek mythology, a chimera is a female monster with the head of a lion, the body of a goat and the tail of a snake and for me the concept of altering the natural growth of animals in order for them to become part-human is indeed the stuff of nightmares. Where will it end?

Concerns about animal welfare and the possibility of viruses being transferred from creature to man have, rightly, been raised, but it has not prevented the continuation of these animal experiments. It is such a shame that the need for more transplant organs is encouraging scientific curiosity in ways that are cruel and unnecessary when there are other, kinder ways to increase the their supply  – such as requiring people to opt out of organ donation if they do not wish to be a donor, which is the common practice in the UK (except in Wales!) and other countries, and which greatly reduces organ availability, instead of having to opt in if they wish to give.

The practice of creating hybrids from different features of animals, humans, birds and even fish was common in the darker days of our history, culminating in Atlantis when the abuse was so great that God determined that it must stop, and that never again would this experimentation be allowed to occur. Its purpose then was for enslavement, sadistic gratification, and power: while there is apparent altruism in the Californian pig trials, if they are allowed to continue, undoubtedly other uses of animal chimeras will be found, some possibly not so well-intentioned.

The fall of Atlantis ended this exploitation of the weak and defenceless, and it is no coincidence, perhaps, that just as our science now begins to go beyond ethical boundaries, Earth is on the brink of major change. God watches, and when it is necessary, intervenes. This time, our games with life have gone too far.

(Image by George Chriss)

 

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The Gotthard Tunnel, and Ley Lines

 

The Gotthard Tunnel under the Swiss Alps was opened yesterday, linking northern and southern Europe in order to “revolutionise European freight transport”.

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Preparing for Spring

My preparations for Spring are almost done. The nest boxes have been cleaned, repaired and new ones put up; the lawn mower is in for servicing; wild flower seeds are growing in the warmth of the Conservatory; the hedges have been trimmed; and the ponds have been cleared of old lilies and other pond plants. It is very satisfying.

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Knowing our National Treasures

My heart sang when I learned on Wednesday that the Welsh Government has passed a law that puts sustainability at the heart of Welsh decision-making. The protection and enhancement of nature, land, water and air are highlighted, as well as measures to do with waste management and cutting emissions. There is more to be done, but it is an encouraging start.

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Climate Change, and the Spirit of Weather

The tail end of Storm Jonah hit the UK this week, but instead of the heavy snows experienced by the East Coast of the US, we have been deluged by rain and battered by wind. “It is down to climate change”, people say, with resignation – but is that the whole story?

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