Other stories below: Increases in avalanches may foreshadow the future; China Sets up First Renewable Energy Think Tank
Most people view immigration, education and jobs as the Latino electorate’s key issues.
Environmentalists want to add climate change to the list.
“It’s a no-brainer for the Latino community,” said Adrianna Quintero of the National Resources Defense Council Thursday at a teleconference including Latino advocates, climate change activists and an environmental scientist.
Recent scientific research backs her up.
Already this winter, 19 people have been killed by avalanches in the Western U.S, with the most recent loss of four skiers and snowboarders in Washington State on Feb. 19. Colorado alone has recorded six fatalities — its average annual total — in just the past month.
As counterintuitive as it may sound, less snow and thinner snowpacks may lead to more avalanches in some years. While it may seem like more snow would lead to more avalanches, experts say that in many areas, the high avalanche danger this year is tied to the thin, weak snowpack that was established earlier this winter, and is now failing to hold on to new snow that falls.
President Obama said Thursday that there are no “quick fixes” for rising gasoline prices that are threatening the economic recovery and providing fodder for attacks from his political rivals.
Gas prices have risen 29 cents per gallon since December, with regular-grade gas now averaging $3.64 a gallon in the Washington region at a time of year when consumers usually enjoy a respite from price hikes.
The high cost at the pump could turn into an election-year mess for the president, whose approval ratings have surged recently as the economy improved. Republicans, sensing an opportunity, have blamed Obama for not giving oil companies greater freedom to drill for new U.S. supplies that might ease prices.
Global warming 50 million years ago caused the first horses, already tiny in stature compared with present-day animals, to shrink 30 percent to about 8.5 pounds, the size of a house cat today, a study suggests.
Later, as the climate cooled, the horse called Sifrhippus began to grow in size, according to research in the journal Science. Scientists the University of Michigan’s Museum of Paleontology used fossilized teeth to make the size estimates.
China has established its first national think tank on renewable energy to conduct research and develop programs and policies, as part of the country’s effort to deal with climate change and carbon emissions.
The China National Renewable Energy Center, launched on Thursday, will also draft industry standards and carry out international cooperation programs.
The center was established by the National Energy Administration with the support of the National Development and Reform Commission.
The center also draws on previous cooperation with Denmark, which established a renewable development program in 2009. The Scandiavian country is providing financial and technology support for the center.