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US: Los Angeles Lakers harness solar power on training facility
22 September 2018 - The Los Angeles Lakers [an American professional basketball team] have set up a new 171 kW LG solar installation on their headquarters at the UCLA Health Training Center [University of California, Los Angeles], a project expected to provide the site with 245,000 kWh of electricity each year. The system ... is predicted to save the facility around $38,000 each year ... which [California firm Vaha Energy] says would pay back installation costs in four years. (more)

NASA satellite launched to measure Earth's ice changes
21 September 2018 - A NASA satellite designed to precisely measure changes in Earth's ice sheets, glaciers, sea ice and vegetation was launched into polar orbit from California early Saturday (15 September). NASA Earth Science Division director Michael Freilich says that the mission in particular will advance knowledge of how the ice sheets of Greenland and Antarctica contribute to sea level rise. ... In addition to ice, the satellite's other measurements, such as the tops of trees, snow, and river heights, may help with research into the amount of carbon stored in forests, flood and drought planning, and wildfire behavior, among other uses. (more)

More evidence exercise may be good for your mood
20 September 2018 - People who exercise may experience symptoms of mental health disorders less often, a U.S. study suggests. That may be true even when the exercise involves doing household chores, researchers found. (more)

Eat, pray, farm: U.S. churches turn faith lands into food
19 September 2018 - Across the United States, more than 200 faith groups are members of an emerging Christian Food Movement, which promotes more sustainable food systems by growing their own crops, bringing idle land into use, and feeding the poor and hungry. (more)

Agrovoltaics: a solar-powered safety net for Massachusetts farmers
18 September 2018 - The long-term, steady income of solar power complements the higher revenue, but harder work of traditional farming. The Massachusetts SMART program looks to increase this trend with 'agrovoltaic' incentives for solar co-located with crops. (more)

US: Harvest of Ideas forum to explore how Univ of Wisconsin-Madison can support organic agriculture in Wisconsin and beyond
18 September 2018 - Agricultural researchers at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and members of Wisconsin's agricultural community are invited to attend the upcoming Harvest of Ideas forum to explore how the UW-Madison can best leverage its strengths to contribute to the advance of organic agriculture locally, nationally, and globally through the university's education, research, and outreach activities. (more)

He served 3.6 million free meals after Hurricane Maria. Now he's feeding people hit by Florence
17 September 2018 - When disaster strikes, the Red Cross and the National Guard are always there to help. And these days, so is Jose Andres. The renowned chef, equipped with a team of cooks and volunteers and a ton of food, is feeding people in the Carolinas who were hit by Hurricane Florence. Andres and his nonprofit World Central Kitchen team arrived in North Carolina a week ago -- days before the storm arrived . . . The team served more than 3.6 million meals in Puerto Rico in the aftermath of 2017's Hurricane Maria and stayed on the island through an entire year to make sure people weren't left hungry. (more)

New sleep study shows its importance for academic performance
11 September 2018 - College students who want good grades may want to skip the all-nighters ... because a new study suggests lack of sleep is at least as bad for academic success as binge drinking or doing drugs. 'When you're approaching school work well rested, you can accomplish work and complex problem solving much more efficiently,' said study co-author J. Roxanne Prichard, scientific director of the Center for College Sleep at the University of St. Thomas in Saint Paul, Minnesota. (more)

US: California Governor commits to 100 percent clean energy
10 September 2018 - California Governor Jerry Brown on Monday (10 September) signed a bill requiring the state to source electricity from exclusively carbon-free sources by 2045, a move aimed at combating climate change. The law makes California the largest global economy to commit to 100 percent clean energy. Hawaii is the only other U.S. state to set a similar goal. The law sends a message that California supports the global Paris agreement to fight climate change, Governor Brown said. (more)

A floating trap catches plastic in the Pacific Ocean
9 September 2018 - A multimillion-dollar floating boom designed to corral plastic debris littering the Pacific Ocean deployed from San Francisco Bay on Saturday (8 September) as part of a larger high-stakes and ambitious undertaking. The 2,000-foot-long unmanned structure ... aims to trap up to 150,000 pounds of plastic during the boom's first year at sea. (more)


Success of Maharishi's Programmes
Short Summaries of Top Stories


September is Self-Improvement Month: How TM can help improve mind, body, emotions, and behaviour
13 September 2018 - 'There is a simple way to do one-stop shopping to accomplish self-improvement,' writes Janet Hoffman, executive director of TM for Women Professionals in the USA. Her suggestion for 'how to improve your mind, body, emotional life, behaviour, and job performance in one stroke: learn the Transcendental Meditation technique. TM is an effortless method that allows your mind to settle inward to the most silent and peaceful level of experience, your authentic innermost Self. . . . Almost 400 peer-reviewed studies have shown that regular TM practice improves our life through a wide range of personal benefits - decreased anxiety and depression, improved memory and clearer thinking, reduced high blood pressure, decreased illness, longer lifespan and more harmonious relationships.' (more)

Maharishi University of Management graduate promotes innovation in education
10 September 2018 - 'Teaching is not what you do, it's who you are,' says Barbara Hays, who graduated this year as Valedictorian at Maharishi University of Management in Fairfield, Iowa, USA and received the Outstanding Student Award in Education. Barbara moved to Fairfield in 1996, so that her three children could attend Maharishi School. After 14 years of teaching science and math there, she decided to obtain her education degree at MUM. She says, 'The number one thing I learned at Maharishi School and MUM is that if you are well-rested, children are delightful. . . . I don't know how public school teachers teach without being able to practise Transcendental Meditation. It's such an essential tool. Especially for teachers.' (more)

Fatherly: Transcendental Meditation makes me a calmer, more present Dad
6 September 2018 - In Fatherly.com's weekly 'How I Stay Sane' column, fathers talk about the things that help them keep grounded in all the other areas of their lives. Zack, a club owner in Miami, says, 'I practise Transcendental Meditation. . . . It's so incredibly helpful. There are times where, especially with two kids, chaos exists - obviously - and it's very easy to get upset. So I use meditation as a tool to excuse myself for 15 minutes, gather myself, and make sure that I'm composed. . . . It helps me be the best version of myself that I can be - a better dad, person, friend, colleague - everything.' (more)

Transcendental Meditation produces significant reduction in drug and alcohol abuse: Elephant Journal
3 September 2018 - Today there is a crisis in drug addiction care: 23 million Americans suffer each year from drug and alcohol abuse; yet only one in five gets treatment. One effective, evidence-based approach for drug abuse reduction is Transcendental Meditation. Over 10 peer-reviewed studies show that TM produces a very significant reduction in drug and alcohol abuse. Comedian Russell Brand comments, 'Transcendental Meditation will give you access to peace. . . . It will give you sanctuary and serenity. That is what it's done for me. An integral part of my life as a recovering drug addict is TM.' (more)

Why self-love is not selfish
31 August 2018 - Research has found that women of any age are more prone to self-criticism than men, and chronic self-criticism can impair mental and physical health. Health writer Linda Egenes explores how treating oneself with 'compassion instead of criticism' can improve health and well-being - but how to calm the negative mind-chatter? Learning Transcendental Meditation, she writes, has allowed her to experience of 'a state of deep rest and relaxation, . . . infinite joy and inner happiness. You could call it my deep self, my essential self. . . . As I effortlessly settled into my true self - that reservoir of universal love that is inside me and inside everyone - I found myself spontaneously acting in a more loving way to myself and others.' (more)

Tom Hanks on how TM helps him overcome 'the afternoon slump'
22 August 2018 - The Afternoon Crash. The 3 O'clock Slump. The Post-Lunch Syndrome. Whatever you call it, we've all experienced that point in the afternoon where energy seems to evaporate and productivity plummets. International film star Tom Hanks says that learning the Transcendental Meditation technique helped him regain and maintain his energy, focus, and productivity at that time of the day: 'I crumbled between 3 o'clock in the afternoon and 7. I mean I was no good for anything. I couldn't read; I couldn't talk on the phone; I couldn't do any work. It was really an unproductive four hours. And now, with meditation, it is the most productive hours of my day.' (Includes video) (more)

Psychology Today: The power of inner silence
14 August 2018 - Psychologist and bestselling author Elaine Aron, PhD, writes in Psychology Today about the value of accessing quieter levels of the mind - not only for 'Highly Sensitive Persons' (HSPs), her field of expertise - but for anyone seeking to be wiser, more creative and effective in daily life. Describing various methods of 'turning inward to find that deeper quiet', Dr Aron writes, 'And there is meditation, the route I have used for 46 years. I chose Transcendental Meditation, partly because its goal is the deepest possible rest and inner silence. . . . Whatever the tradition, those committed to these deeper levels of inner silence and calm report at its deepest the same satisfying state, perhaps best called ''pure consciousness'' because it can be without thoughts, feelings, or perceptions, yet you are wide awake inside.'  (more)

TM for Women: Fulfilling the pursuit of happiness at the deepest level of our self
10 August 2018 - 'While all Americans in principle have the liberty that allows for the pursuit of happiness, women struggle to fulfil this goal,' writes Janet Hoffman, executive director of TM for Women Professionals in the USA. Research shows that depression is twice as likely in women than in men. A 2010 study by researchers at University of California Los Angeles shows that depressive symptoms decreased by almost 50% over a 12-month period among people practising Transcendental Meditation. 'Our mission in TM for Women is the full empowerment of women as independent, self-sufficient, happy human beings,' Hoffman writes, '. . . . realizing ourselves as the immeasurable being we are - with no lack, no boundary, nothing missing or needed.' (more)

Wide awake: Katy Perry on Transcendental Meditation
7 August 2018 - Ever-evolving music icon Katy Perry shares her enthusiasm for the benefits of her Transcendental Meditation practice, while delivering a message of empowerment and hope for young people. In a conversation with her TM teacher Bob Roth, CEO of the David Lynch Foundation, she says, 'I noticed when I meditate that my whole brain kind of opens up . . . and it's like I'm clearing out the cobwebs of my neural pathways and finding new neural pathways to ignite. It's some of the most incredible stillness. And I would also say it brings some of the best, most creative ideas to the surface for me, especially when I come out of it. . . . Recharging, having the mental strength, the physical strength and immune strength, to be able to take on this big, technical, technological world.' (more)

American Nurses Association's 'Healthy Nurse, Healthy Nation' campaign blog features Transcendental Meditation
4 August 2018 - The American Nurses Association's (ANA) Healthy Nurse, Healthy Nation blog recently published an article by Amy Ruff, RN, BSN, WOCN, US National Director of Transcendental Meditation for Nurses. In 'Meditation 101: Know Your Options', she writes, 'One common misconception is that all meditation procedures are more or less ''the same''. But this is incorrect - meditation procedures often differ in their purpose, practice and the results they give.' Ruff learned TM as a new graduate RN in 1973 - tired, stressed, and full of anxiety after months in the high-stress environment of the Intensive Care Unit (ICU). 'What appealed to me was the science behind [TM]': research showing physiological indications of decreased stress and improvements in health. 'After the first 20 minute meditation I felt rejuvenated, clearer and happier.... TM saved my nursing career.' (more)


Flops
Short Summaries of Top Stories


Almost one in 11 U.S. tweens and teens vape cannabis
17 September 2018 - Roughly one in 11 American middle and high school students have used cannabis in e-cigarettes, a study suggests. Nearly one in three young e-cigarette users said they had tried cannabis with e-cigarettes at least once, survey results showed. Overall, almost 9 percent of students had vaped marijuana, including 4.5 percent of students in middle school and 12.4 percent of students in high school. (more)

US: Rains from Hurricane Florence cause collapse at NC coal ash landfill
16 September 2018 - Duke Energy said Saturday (15 September) night that heavy rains from Hurricane Florence caused a slope to collapse at a coal-ash landfill at a closed power station near the North Carolina coast. ...The coal-fired Sutton plant was retired in 2013 and the company has been excavating millions of tons of ash from old waste pits and removing it to safer lined landfills constructed on the property. The gray ash left behind when coal is burned contains toxic heavy metals, including arsenic, lead, and mercury. There are at least two other coal-fired Duke plants in North Carolina that are likely to affected by the storm. (more)

US: Swollen North Carolina rivers swamp dumps, raising water pollution fears
16 September 2018 - As rain from Hurricane Florence continued to lash the Carolinas, the region's swollen rivers were beginning to swamp coal ash dumps and low-lying hog farms Sunday (16 September), raising pollution concerns. Such farms typically have large pits filled with hog urine and feces that can cause significant water contamination if breached or overtopped by floodwaters. State environmental regulators said Sunday they had not yet received any reports of spills. Duke Energy said the collapse of a coal ash landfill at the L.V. Sutton Power Station near Wilmington, North Carolina, is an 'on-going situation,' with an unknown amount of potentially contaminated storm water flowing into a nearby lake. The gray ash left behind when coal is burned contains toxic heavy metals, including arsenic, lead, and mercury. At a different power plant near Goldsboro, three old coal ash dumps capped with soil were inundated by the Neuse River. (more)

Documents: University deal with Foxconn largely confidential
13 September 2018 - The University of Wisconsin-Madison and Foxconn Technology Group will manage their new research partnership largely behind closed doors, documents detailing the agreement show. Foxconn and UW-Madison announced plans in August to create a technology institute on campus as well as a research facility in Mount Pleasant, where the Taiwanese electronics giant is constructing a massive flat-screen manufacturing facility with the help of up to $3.2 billion in state incentives. ... 'The UW is a public institution that is supposed to represent the public interest,' [Bill Leuders, president of the Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council,] wrote in his email. 'Creating layers of secrecy over what it is doing under contract with Foxconn is contrary to that ideal.' (more)

Severe delivery complications on the rise among U.S. pregnant women
5 September 2018 - An increasing proportion of U.S. women are experiencing serious and potentially life-threatening complications while giving birth, government researchers report. Between 2006 and 2015, rates of severe complications rose by 45 percent overall, according to a report released by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality's Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project (HCUP). (more)

US: Children taking multiple medications at risk for severe reactions
28 August 2018 - Nearly one in five American children use at least one prescription medication, and roughly one in 13 kids takes more than one prescription drug, according to a new study. And among the children taking more than one medication, one in 12 is at risk of a harmful drug interaction, researchers report in Pediatrics. Adolescent girls are most at risk of adverse reactions, including a potentially deadly heart condition, the researchers found. (more)

Depression in pregnancy may alter babies' brains
27 August 2018 - Women with depression and anxiety during pregnancy may be more likely to have babies with altered brain development that might be linked to behavior problems later in childhood, a small study suggests. In the current study, researchers found maternal depression and anxiety linked to changes in what's known as white matter microstructure in the brain, which is involved in communication between different regions of the brain. (more)

General surgeon shortage growing in U.S.
24 August 2018 - The shortage of general surgeons in the U.S. is projected to get worse as the number of these doctors entering the workforce each year fails to keep pace with population growth, a U.S. study suggests. By 2050, there will be a deficit of 7,047 general surgeons nationwide, researchers calculated. (more)

Microsoft uncovers more Russian hacking ahead of midterms
21 August 2018 - Microsoft has uncovered new Russian hacking efforts targeting U.S. political groups ahead of the November midterm elections. The company said Tuesday, August 21, that a group tied to the Russian government created fake websites that appeared to spoof two American conservative organizations: the Hudson Institute and the International Republican Institute. Three other fake sites were designed to look as if they belonged to the U.S. Senate.

The hacking attempts mirror similar Russian attacks ahead of the 2016 election, which U.S. intelligence officials have said were focused on helping to elect Republican Donald Trump to the presidency by hurting his Democratic opponent, Hillary Clinton. (more)

Get more sleep, Arianna tells Elon. It's not an 'option,' he tells her in 2:30 a.m. tweet.
20 August 2018 - An apparently overworked, under-rested Elon Musk rejected Arianna Huffington's recent suggestion that he get more sleep -- and he did so in a tweet in the middle of the night. It prompted Huffington, a longtime sleep advocate who co-founded the HuffPost, to reach out and offer her fellow entrepreneur some tips. 'It's like trying to launch us into our clean energy future (or into space) with a coal-fired steam engine. It just won't work,' [she tells him]. Huffington said that she wrote to Musk in an open letter because the issue does not pertain to only him. (more)

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