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Japanese whale hunters kill 122 pregnant minke

Japanese whale hunters kill 122 pregnant minke

Science
Japanese hunters caught and killed 122 pregnant minke whales as part of its Antarctic summer "field survey".A report sent to the International Whaling Commission (IWC) reveals hunters caught 333 minkes in total.The team left Japan in November 2017 for the Southern Ocean and returned in March 2018.Japan says its whaling programme is for scientific purposes, despite a 2014 UN ruling against its "lethal research" and widespread condemnation.In a new research plan published after the UN ruling, Japan said it was "scientifically imperative" to understand Antarctica's ecosystem through collecting and analysing animals.How many whales did Japan catch?The country's New Scientific Whale Research Program in the Antarctic Ocean (NEWREP-A) s...
Hawaii volcano: How many people do volcanoes kill?

Hawaii volcano: How many people do volcanoes kill?

Science
Media playback is unsupported on your device With its red-hot rivers of lava and clouds of ash, Hawaii's Kilauea volcano has captured the world's attention. But how dangerous are such eruptions?Every year about 60 volcanoes erupt. Some take us by surprise but others are regular offenders.Kilauea is one of the world's most active - its present eruption began 35 years ago, but there has been an increase in activity in recent weeks. Its lava flows have quite literally been erupting in people's backyards, but thankfully only one serious injury has been reported - a man hit by projectile molten rock as he sat on his balcony.This could appear to suggest that volcanoes aren't all that dangerous, but much of the world's population lives close to an ac...
Dust storms kill nearly 100 in northern India

Dust storms kill nearly 100 in northern India

World
At least 95 people have died and scores more injured in fierce dust storms that hit the northern Indian states of Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan. The storms on Wednesday disrupted electricity, uprooted trees, destroyed houses and killed livestock. Many of the dead were sleeping when their houses collapsed after being struck by intense bursts of lightning.Dust storms are common in this part of India during summer but loss of life on this scale is unusual. Sixty-four people died in Uttar Pradesh, 43 of them in Agra district which is home to the Taj Mahal monument. Officials say the death toll could increase. Falling trees and walls killed many people in the state. The state Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has directed officials to personally monitor relief operations.Relief commissioner Sanjay K...
Syrian-allied airstrikes kill at least 27 in rebel-held Douma

Syrian-allied airstrikes kill at least 27 in rebel-held Douma

World
April 6 (UPI) -- At least 27 people were killed Friday in airstrikes by allies of the Syrian government on the rebel-held area of Eastern Ghouta, following a breakdown of talks, a monitor reported.At least five of those killed were children, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported, adding that the 40 airstrikes in two hours were believed to be carried out by Russian fighter planes.The airstrikes Friday on the Damascus suburb were the first attacks since negotiations over a possible civilian withdrawal began 10 days ago. The Syrian government has bused willing evacuees from the area since March, but members of the Jaish al-Islam resistance group have refused to go.Syria and Russia threatened to resume bombing the town if the group failed to leave. Negotiations broke down on Thursda...
UV light can kill airborne flu virus, study finds

UV light can kill airborne flu virus, study finds

Science
Feb. 9 (UPI) -- Experiments prove low doses of far ultraviolet C light, or far-UVC light, can wipe out airborne flu virus without harming humans.Researchers at the Columbia University Irving Medical Center suggest far-UVC lamps should be installed in hospitals, doctors offices, schools, airports and other public places.Currently, ultraviolet light is used to decontaminate surgical equipment, but the light isn't safe for human exposure."Unfortunately, conventional germicidal UV light... can lead to skin cancer and cataracts, which prevents its use in public spaces," David J. Brenner, a professor of radiation biophysics and director of the Center for Radiological Research at CUIMC, said in a news release.Traditional UV lamps feature a broad spectrum of light wavelengths between 200 to 400 na...