River as a living entity – Frontline

Recognising river ecosystems or other entities of nature as having rights offers the possibility of managing and governing habitats based on the ecological realities of a region. When a river is recognised as a legal person, it has a right to maintain its spirit, identity and integrity.
— Read on frontline.thehindu.com/environment/photo-essay-river-as-a-living-entity/article36984037.ece

UN Committee Finds Violation of Indigenous Peoples’ Right to Traditional Lands | ASIL

The community complained that the process killed their animals and plants, and had an adverse impact on the environment. The Committee found that Paraguay failed to prevent contamination in violation of the their right to traditional lands, and recommended that Paraguay complete the relevant criminal and administrative proceedings. This decision affirms that the term “home” in the context of the indigenous community should be interpreted “within the context of the special relationship between them and their territories including their livestock, crops and their way of life such as hunting, foraging and fishing.”
— Read on www.asil.org/ILIB/un-committee-finds-violation-indigenous-peoples-right-traditional-lands

Outrage as Texas school District Considers Holocaust Denial Books in Response to Anti-Racism Crackdown

Republican Texas Governor Greg Abbott signed a bill into law earlier this year that is intended to combat the teaching of critical race theory. A recording obtained by NBC News captures an administrator from Carroll Independent School District—which serves the wealthy, predominantly white Dallas-Fort Worth suburb of Southlake—last week instructing teachers to comply with the new law by offering alternate opinions on topics like the Holocaust, despite mainstream views on the Holocaust not being opposed in any substantial or credible manner.

Gina Peddy, the school district’s executive director of curriculum and instruction, can be heard in the recording telling teachers to “try to remember the concepts of” the new law while planning their lessons. She then tells teachers that if they “have a book on the Holocaust” they should also include a book that has “opposing” views or “other perspectives.” The exchange prompted strong reactions on Twitter, with many prominent figures outrage that Abbott’s law could promote Holocaust denial.
— Read on www.newsweek.com/outrage-texas-school-district-considers-holocaust-denial-books-response-anti-racism-crackdown-1639213

Weird Dreams Train Our Brains to Be Better Learners – Facts So Romantic – Nautilus

Neural networks need to “dream” of weird, senseless examples to learn well. Maybe we do, too.
— Read on m.nautil.us/blog/weird-dreams-train-our-brains-to-be-better-learners

Women and Social Security: How to Get the Biggest Check – The New York Times

Women tend to live longer than men, so they need as much retirement income as possible. Whether you’re 30 or 60, here’s what you need to know.
— Read on www.nytimes.com/2021/06/28/business/retirement/women-social-security-retirement.html

Empty Homes, Shattered Dreams: China’s “Ghost Castles” – NHK WORLD PRIME – TV | NHK WORLD-JAPAN Live & Programs

A curious sight has emerged in the economically flourishing cities of China: Apartment buildings in which construction halts midway. Locals refer to them as “ghost castles.” Residents of one such building in Wuhan live in rooms without water or electricity, struggling under the financial weight of repaying the mortgage for an unfinished home. This program examines the shadow behind real estate development through the turmoil faced by the residents who have become victims of a ghost castle.
— Read on www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/tv/worldprime/20210911/3016103/

BBC World Service – The Inquiry, Is China’s economy in trouble?

For decades China’s economic growth has been the envy of the western world. But current signs suggest all is not well.
Regulations brought in by government to curb businesses reliance on debt have badly hit the its second largest real estate developer, Evergrande and manufacturing output has been hit by power shortages.
So is China’s economy in trouble?

Experts:
Sara Hsu, visiting scholar at Fudan University in Shanghai
Michael Pettis, Finance Professor at Peking University and a Fellow at the Carnegie Endowment
Iris Pang, ING’s Chief Economist for Greater China
Travis Lundy, independent research analyst in Hong Kong
— Read on www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/w3ct1z2l

A C.I.A. Admission – The New York Times

In a top secret cable, the agency said it had lost dozens of informants. How did this happen?
— Read on www.nytimes.com/2021/10/08/podcasts/the-daily/cia-informants-compromised.html

Volcanic Grit, Water Shortage Threaten La Palma’s Banana Crop

Once the ash lands on the bananas, it is almost impossible to remove.

And it causes further damage in the handling, transport and packing, with the huge bunches, which are known as “pineapples” and can weigh up to 70 kilos (150 pounds), carried on the shoulders.

“You have to blast it off with water or something — to be honest, I don’t know how to do it,” said Sanchez, 60, who owns a small plantation. “When the dew forms overnight, it really makes the grit stick, and in the morning it just won’t come off.”

Can’t be sold

The skin blackens in the form of a scratch but nothing like the brownish-black markings that show the fruit is ripe.

And although the banana is perfect, it is rejected and cannot be sold.

“European quality regulations ban the sale of bananas with more than four square centimeters of scratches per fruit, even if they are perfect inside and can be eaten without risk,” said Esther Dominguez of ASPROCAN, which represents banana producers in the Canary Islands.

The volcano’s eruption has predominantly hurt the Aridane valley on the western flank of La Palma, although the problem caused by volcanic ash and grit has affected a much wider area.
— Read on www.voanews.com/a/volcanic-grit-water-shortage-threaten-la-palma-s-banana-crop/6263865.html

Scientists create their own GPS by spying on internet satellites | Science | AAAS

Scientists create their own GPS by spying on internet satellites | Science | AAAS
— Read on www.science.org/content/article/scientists-create-their-own-gps-spying-internet-satellites