In 1993 when I was a first year biology student I first became aware of what is known as the bacterial growth curve. It is a cornerstone theory of microbiology, one that every microbiology student learns probably on their first day. Best described by a simple graph (see figure below) it describes the population trend of bacteria in an enclosed petri dish, with a finite food source (in the form of fortified agar) at constant temperature, and no inputs from exterior environments post inoculation, i.e. nothing further is added to the petri dish once the bacteria of choice are introduced. Continue reading “The Bacterial Growth Curve & Petri Dish Earth”
Proof that there are still many who doubt science backed warnings about impending human influenced catastrophe, despite overwhelming evidence, was apparent recently in the Irish editions of the Sunday Times. It is a reminder that these deniers hold prominent positions in media, politics and business. And they are supported by an army of lay believers in the general population who are misguided and confused. Continue reading “Climate Debate Should Finish. The Case is Closed. The Debate Must Now Solely Focus on Mitigation”
There is a significant moment in history that interests you, one that occurred well before any humans were around to record it by word of mouth, carving in stone, or in cave paint, scrolls, pamphlets, books, lithographs, photographs or iPhones. Wouldn’t it be great if we could invent some machine to reach into time and pull out an image of that exact moment? Continue reading “THE DEATH OF DINOSAURS AND SCRAPPING SCIENTISTS, AND A NEWBIE IN THE MIDDLE”
Every now and then, in music, an album comes along, or I find an old one, that contains songs that seem so perfect in concept, arrangement, execution and delivery, that for the entire package to exist seems so obvious. As in, why didn’t anybody think of that before?. Nirvana’s Nevermind is one example; such a full-on blast-out of messy rock (albeit highly produced) that dealt with young adult alienation so perfectly that the singer, in a fog of an undiagnosed mental illness, succumbed to the misery and despair of his lyrics and committed suicide. Continue reading “Watching Evolution in Real Time”
Apologies for silence for the past while. Work and life are busy, and I bought an electric guitar. There’s nothing like sitting around crunching power chords (badly) when looking to waste time.
Anyway, I digress. Moving away from my usual rants about the science of climate change and biodiversity loss, this post will deal with a scientific theory that I personally find intriguing – horizontal gene transfer, specifically between prokaryotes and eukaryotes. A nice new paper has emerged, though not without contest, that further supports it. Continue reading “The Web of Life”
Image by Jekaterina Saveljeva of FemLens www.femlens.com
To further impress the need for a massive international cooperative effort to drastically change our economic systems, we need to discuss as best we can the role of women in society everywhere.
Specifically, we need to look at the role of education for women in the upcoming fight to reverse a changing climate. As in every other action we need to tackle, this one also requires a swift about-turn in the general mindset of humanity. Continue reading “Step 2 In Our Fight Against Climate Change: It is Time to Replace Outdated Social Attitudes to Gender Roles”
We need new leadership. Immediately, and everywhere where there is a semblance of democracy on the planet. We need a new kind of political party, one that is not bound by any current type of party politics; not left, not right, not centrist, not theological, not anything to the extreme ends of those creeds, and nothing resembling any of the countless political shades in between them. We need, in short, an intellectual and political earthquake. Continue reading “Why We Need to Vote in New Leaders to Tackle Climate Change; Leaders Who Do Not Ascribe to Any Current Political Ideology”
What does this image mean to you?
What about this one?
Or this one?
What those images should do is explain plainly the impact humans are having the biodiversity of life on the planet. As a consequence of our own expanding populations, improved harvesting technology, growing economies, and a continuous expansion of infrastructure – such as that seen in Western Europe and the Chinese Belt and Road Initiative (ref), and the illegal wildlife trade (the fourth biggest illegal trade in the world) – we are fast heading for a calamity that is as bad as climate change – massive and unsustainable biodiversity loss. Continue reading “Human Demand for Unsustainable Food and Superstitious Medicine Must End to Stop Biodiversity Loss – Why We Need to Start Thinking Radically Differently”
Time is against me and I don’t get to write as much here as I would like. I have a full-time job and a social life. And I research and write here for free, but also for the pure enjoyment of writing about these topics. Also, I am enthused about the interest I garner from spammers in my comments sections. Who knew spammers had such a healthy interest in matters of science. So, in light of the many issues coming to my attention that I feel this blog needs to deal with, this post will deal with two separate recent announcements regarding the human impact upon the only home we currently know – Earth. Two birds with one post, as it were. Continue reading “Step One in Halting Climate Change: Introduce Laws to Force Food Businesses to Trade Sustainably.”
The most bracing piece of scientific news lately was clearly the report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) starkly titled “Global Warming of 1.5oC”. (link)
The report is not news to anybody; not to scientists, not to those who read the news, and not to politicians. Although, they may profess other wise. Continue reading “The IPCC climate report 2018 – We need to heed it, but we probably won’t.”