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Mother's heart health tied to breastfeeding
22 June 2017 - A woman's risk of suffering a heart attack or stroke later in life may be influenced by how long she breastfed her children, according to a new study from China. Women who reported having breastfed for any amount of time were about 9 percent less likely than mothers who never breastfed to have signs of coronary heart disease, like a heart attack, in middle age and later and about 8 percent less likely to have a stroke. (more)

Solar, wind surpassed 10 percent of U.S. electricity in March: EIA
22 June 2017 - Wind and solar accounted for more than 10 percent of U.S. electricity generation for the first time in March, the Energy Department's Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday, 14 June. Wind and solar power capacity has been growing in the United States, accounting for an average of up to 7 percent of electricity in 2016. (more)

International Yoga Day celebrated across the globe ‎
21 June 2017 - Hundreds of thousands of men, women and young people of almost every age took to the mat across the globe on Wednesday for a yoga session to mark the 3rd International Yoga Day. Rains failed to dampen the spirits of about 50,000 who joined an outdoor yoga [asana] session, June 21, with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in a park in Lucknow, capital of the northern state of Uttar Pradesh. 'Yoga has connected the world with India,' Modi told a cheering crowd. 'Yoga is about health assurance. It is not even expensive to practice,' said Modi who was instrumental in getting the United Nations declare the International Yoga Day in December 2014. (more)

More playtime with dad linked to lower obesity risk for young kids
21 June 2017 - Fathers who get more involved in raising their children may be helping to lower their kids' risk of obesity, a U.S. study suggests. By age 4, kids were 30 percent less likely to be obese if their fathers increased the amount of time they spent taking children outside for walks and play, compared to those whose dads remained more hands-off or even reduced their involvement between their kids' second and fourth birthdays. (more)

India: Navy officers perform asanas onboard ships on International Yoga Day
21 June 2017 - On the third International Yoga Day, Navy officers and personnel onboard INS Jalashwa and INS Kirch in the Bay of Bengal performed yoga asanas this morning. Yoga festivities were conducted on INS Vikramaditya and even on the deck of aircraft carrier INS Viraat in Mumbai's Naval Dock Yard. Prime Minister Narendra Modi also took part in International Yoga Day celebrations at Uttar Pradesh's Ramabai Ambedkar Ground with over 60,000 participants. 'Yoga is binding the world together. Practising it will eventually lead to better health for people,' he said. (more)

Pictures of Indian Armed Force officials doing yoga asanas on INS Viraat will inspire you to take up yoga today!
21 June 2017 - Over the past couple of days, many across the country -- and the world -- have been celebrating the third International Day of Yoga (which falls on June 21), which included stretching into various yoga asana poses at unusual and scenic locations. Now, those in the Indian Armed Forces were found taking part in World Yoga Day celebrations by practising the ancient system of exercise on the the Naval aircraft carrier INS Viraat, anchored in Mumbai. Photos taken by Indian Express photographer Pradip Das show Indian Armed Forces personnel take part in a yoga asana session early in the morning on June 21 . . . (more)

Yoga asanas as good for low back pain as physical therapy
21 June 2017 - Chronic lower back pain is equally likely to improve with yoga [asana] classes as with physical therapy, according to a new study. Twelve weeks of yoga [asanas] lessened pain and improved function in people with low back pain as much as physical therapy sessions over the same period. Physical therapy is the most common non-drug treatment for low back pain prescribed by doctors, according to lead author Dr. Robert Saper, of Boston Medical Center and colleagues. Yoga is also backed by some guidelines and studies as a treatment option, but until now no research has compared the two. (more)

Heart healthy lifestyle tied to lower drug costs
21 June 2017 - People with heart disease spend a lot less on medications when they take steps to lower their risk of complications by doing things like getting enough exercise, avoiding cigarettes, and keeping their blood pressure in check, a U.S. study suggests. (more)

UK Queen's Speech: Petrol stations to go electric
21 June 2017 - Petrol stations and motorway services will be required to install electric charge points, under plans outlined in the Queen's Speech. The measure forms part of a government push to increase the number of electric vehicles on UK roads. (more)

Central African Republic, armed groups sign deal in Rome
20 June 2017 - Representatives of most of the armed groups in Central African Republic on Monday [19 June] signed an agreement to honor an immediate cease-fire, after more than three years of sectarian conflict that have left thousands dead. The announcement in Rome followed negotiations between Central African Republic's nascent government and 13 of the 14 armed groups currently active in the country . . . (more)

On World Refugee Day, UN urges support, solidarity for displaced people
20 June 2017 - United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres today called on the international community to provide support and solidarity for the record number of refugees. 'We reflect on the courage of those who fled and the compassion of those who welcome them,' the Secretary-General said in his video message for World Refugee Day, marked annually on 20 June. Despite the hardships of fleeing with nothing, 'they never lose their dreams for their children or their desire to better our world,' he said. (more)

Refugee Food Festival expands to 13 European cities in six countries
20 June 2017 - After last year's successes in Paris and Strasbourg, the 2017 Refugee Food Festival is going international, with events in 13 European cities in six countries between 15 and 30 June. The 2017 festival will take place . . . as part of the events marking World Refugee Day on June 20. In June last year, more than 1,000 people enjoyed food prepared by refugee chefs from India, Iran, Ivory Coast, Russia, Sri Lanka, and Syria in 11 Paris restaurants, which opened their kitchens and changed their menus for the occasion. (more)

Viet Nam: Organic product demands keeps rising
20 June 2017 - Demand for organic farm and other products has increased significantly both in Viet Nam and globally, and this is good news for businesses investing in the field, according to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development. Deputy Minister Trần Thanh Nam said many countries had begun to adopt organic agricultural practices, and the area under organic farming is increasing. (more)

New South Korean President vows to end use of nuclear power
19 June 2017 - South Korea's new president, Moon Jae-in, has vowed to phase out the country's dependence on nuclear power . . . Moon, who won last month's presidential election by a landslide . . . said he would increase the role of renewable energy and lead South Korea towards a 'nuclear-free era'. (more)

India: Catching the sun at Bhadla solar park
18 June 2017 - Bhadla, an arid sprawl in Rajasthan spread over 45 sq km, is where over a million glistening silicon panels fuel India's ambitious plan to generate 1,00,000 MW of solar energy by 2022. The Indian Express [newspaper] visits the plant that is on its way to becoming the country's biggest solar park. (more)

China, ADB launch green financing platform to fight pollution
16 June 2017 - China and the Asia Development Bank (ADB) have launched a green financing platform to support efforts by small- and medium-sized enterprises to cut pollution in the smog-hit Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region, ADB said on Friday [16 June]. China selected five regions this week to take part in pilot government green financing schemes, the cabinet said on Wednesday. (more)

US: How Father's Day started 107 years ago
16 June 2017 - Sunday is the 107th Father's Day celebrated in the U.S. since Sonora Smart Dodd created the holiday in 1910. It's a tradition Dodd decided to start as she sat in a Spokane, Washington, church on Mother's Day 1909, listening to a sermon about -- what else? -- Mother's Day. 'And it bugged her,' Dodd's ... great-granddaughter recalled with a laugh ... 'She thought, 'Well, why isn't there a Father's Day?' Dodd spent the next 62 years lobbying everyone from Presidents to retailers for support. Finally, in 1972, President Richard Nixon declared the third Sunday of June a federal holiday honoring dads. Dodd, who died at age 96 in 1978, had lived to see her dream come true. (more)

Tilos, Greece: the first island in the Mediterranean to run entirely on wind and solar power
15 June 2017 - Tiny Tilos, in the Dodecanese, is a pioneering nature reserve. Now, Greece's 'green island' is set to be powered by renewable energy. Tilos owes its extraordinary biodiversity to a network of underground springs that feed five wetlands -- but also to the late mayor, Tassos Aliferis, a committed environmentalist who earned Tilos its reputation as 'Greece's green island'. The current mayor, Maria Kamma, continues to champion sustainable development, and human rights. She has extended an open invitation to refugee families to settle on Tilos, working with the NGO SolidarityNow and the UNHCR to establish sheltered accommodation, language classes,and mentoring schemes to help asylum-seekers set up organic farming businesses in partnership with locals. (more)

Solar power will push out coal faster than you think
15 June 2017 - Solar power, once so costly it only made economic sense in spaceships, is becoming cheap enough that it will push coal and even natural-gas plants out of business faster than previously forecast. That's the conclusion of a Bloomberg New Energy Finance outlook for how fuel and electricity markets will evolve by 2040. The research group estimated solar already rivals the cost of new coal power plants in Germany and the U.S. and by 2021 will do so in quick-growing markets such as China and India. (more)

U.S. youth tobacco use in 2016 fell by largest amount in 6 years
15 June 2017 - Youth tobacco use in the United States fell to historic lows in 2016, leading public health experts to speculate that a smoke-free generation may be within reach. The number of high school students who smoked cigarettes in the 30 days prior to being surveyed fell to 8 percent from 9.3 percent in 2015, the data shows. In 2011 the number was 15.8 percent. The decline in e-cigarette use was even greater . . . (more)

US: Teen vaping falls dramatically, study says
15 June 2017 - Teen vaping, which has been skyrocketing, fell dramatically last year in the United States. A government survey released Thursday suggests the number of high school and middle school students using electronic cigarettes fell to 2.2 million last year, from 3 million the year before. It's the first decline CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) has reported in teen vaping since the agency began tracking it in 2011. The findings echo a recent University of Michigan survey, which also detected a decline in 2016. (more)

US physicists win Spanish prize for work in gravity waves
14 June 2017 - Astrophysicists whose work led to the ground-breaking detection of cosmic gravitational waves first predicted by Einstein have been awarded Spain's Princess of Asturias 2017 scientific research. Prize organizers said Wednesday (14 June) the award went to American physicians Rainer Weiss, Kip Thorne, and Barry Barish and to the LIGO Scientific Collaboration group of international astrophysicists. (more)

Global demand for coal falls in 2016 for second year in a row
13 June 2017 - Global demand for coal has fallen for the second consecutive year, according to a BP study, helped by the US and China burning less of the dirtiest fossil fuel. The UK was described as the 'most extreme example' of the trend away from coal, which has resulted in use of the fuel returning to levels not seen since the start of the industrial revolution. China's decreasing reliance on the fuel, large population, and enormous investment in renewables mean it is increasingly being seen as a global leader on climate change . . . (more)

Apple issues $1 billion green bond
13 June 2017 - Apple Inc (AAPL.O) offered a $1 billion bond dedicated to financing clean energy and environmental projects on Tuesday (13 June) . . . Last year, Apple allocated $442 million to 16 different projects from renewable energy to recycling from its first bond offer. One of the projects it funded was a robotic system called Liam to take apart junked iPhones and recover valuable materials that can be recycled, such as silver and tungsten -- an attempt to address criticism that Apple's products ... Although green bonds comprise a small fraction of the overall bond market, demand has grown significantly as investors seek lower-carbon investments. (more)

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