8 posts tagged brazil
A brain-to-brain interface (BTBI) enabled a real-time transfer of behaviorally meaningful sensorimotor information between the brains of two rats. In this BTBI, an “encoder” rat performed sensorimotor tasks that required it to select from two choices of tactile or visual stimuli. While the encoder rat performed the task, samples of its cortical activity were transmitted to matching cortical areas of a “decoder” rat using intracortical microstimulation (ICMS). The decoder rat learned to make similar behavioral selections, guided solely by the information provided by the encoder rat’s brain. These results demonstrated that a complex system was formed by coupling the animals’ brains, suggesting that BTBIs can enable dyads or networks of animal’s brains to exchange, process, and store information and, hence, serve as the basis for studies of novel types of social interaction and for biological computing devices.
RIO DE JANEIRO — Communities in remote corners of Brazil’s Amazon jungle are facing repeated assaults and death threats from illegal loggers who want to steal their lands, Amnesty International said Wednesday.
The human rights group said there was no police presence in parts of Brazil’s northwestern Amazonas state and no investigation into illegal activities reportedly taking place there.
“Those living in the region are in danger,” it said in a statement, urging Brazilian authorities to protect local residents and stop the illegal logging.
The target of the invading land-grabbers known as “grileiros” and illegal loggers are small communities living from timber extraction in legally recognized reserves located south of the town of Labrea.
Many residents have fled the region fearing for their lives, Amnesty said.
Dinhana Nink was gunned down in front of her son in a nearby town in Rondonia state where she has sought refuge after her house was set ablaze, the statement said.
Community leader Nilcilene Miguel de Lima, who has denounced the influx of illegal loggers in the reserves, was beaten up, threatened with a pistol and had her house set ablaze. She has been under armed protection by federal agents since October, according to Amnesty.
In April, she had to be evacuated by authorities after her dog was shot in the head and killed, it said.
The police station covering the area is located hundreds of kilometers (miles) north of Labrea and can be reached only by air.
Índio Yanomami. Roraima (by pinterest)
This mostly covers carbon, but you may find it interesting:Climate Change Solutions:Frontline Perspectives from Around the GlobeThe End of Deforestation in the Amazon: Is it Possible?February 16th, 2012 | 12PM - 1PM ESTSpeaker: Dr. Paulo Moutinho, Executive Director, Amazon Environmental Research InstituteRegister Here: https://yaleenvirocenter.webex.com/The Yale Center for Environmental Law & Policy, in partnership with World Resources Institute and Environmental Defense Fund, invites you to participate in the next event in our webinar series: Climate Change Solutions: Frontline Perspectives from Around the Globe.This exciting webinar series highlights the current state of climate change policy actions through speakers who provide unique insight into the latest policy developments in the world’s highest greenhouse gas emitting countries.
This month, the series continues with a discussion of Brazil’s climate policy by Dr. Paulo Moutinho. Dr. Moutinho is the Executive Director of the Amazon Environmental Research Institute (IPAM) and joins us to discuss Brazil’s policies on climate change and deforestation.
The presentation will be followed by a Q&A session with the audience.
A referendum for Scotland’s independence poses serious concerns for the future of the United Kingdom.
Alex Salmond, Scotland’s First Minister, is a major advocate of independence from Britain
Britain once ruled a vast empire from India to Singapore and South Africa, but its own borders are now being threatened.
The Scottish National Party, which won last May’s Scottish election, has pencilled in autumn 2014 as the date for a referendum on independence. Voters will be asked whether Scotland should secede from the UK and become the world’s newest independent state.
It is likely to be the most important democratic decision that many Scots will make.
Scotland’s First Minister, Alex Salmond, on a visit this week to the World Future Energy Summit in Abu Dhabi, told Al Jazeera, “I want Scotland to be independent because independence is the natural state for most nations around the world - not being independent is the exception.”
A concern for Cameron
British Prime Minister David Cameron has good reason to be concerned.
It has become a common joke that his ruling Conservative Party has fewer Scottish MPs than the number of giant pandas in Edinburgh Zoo. (There are two pandas - just one Tory.)
His government’s austere programme of spending cuts is beginning to bite; the Scottish Nationalists are counting on them becoming even more unpopular as the referendum approaches.
If Salmond gets his way and the Scots vote for independence, the UK will lose 90 per cent of its oil and gas reserves in the North Sea and almost half its land mass.
Sir Malcolm Rifkind MP, who served as Britain’s Defence and Foreign Secretary, told Al Jazeera, “I have no doubt that if Scotland became a separate state the perception would be that the UK was a much diminished country.”
Ah, the country of my birth.
Remember the Belo Monte dam that would flood a massive part of the Amazon Rain forest and that would force 40,000 indigenous Brazilians to leave their homelands and how everything seemed lost a while ago?
It’s not lost.
Amazon mega-dam halted
© Survival International
A judge in Brazil has ordered that the construction of the Belo Monte mega-dam in the Amazon be suspended, warning that it would disrupt fishing by the local population.
Thousands of Indians and many other communities living in the area around the Xingu river depend on fishing as a key element of their nutrition.
The judge has forbidden the consortium building the dam, Norte Energia S.A., from implementing ‘any works which will interfere with the natural course of the Xingu river’.
The consortium faces a daily fine of over US$100,000 if it does not comply with the ruling.
If built, Belo Monte would be the third largest dam in the world. As well as drastically affecting fish stocks, it would devastate vast areas of forest upon which thousands of indigenous people, including uncontacted Indians, depend for their well-being.
Sheyla Juruna, of the Juruna tribe which will be affected by the dam, stated, ‘We consider the river our home. We do not want the dam, we do not want this destructive project… we want our rights upheld’.
The Indians have not given their consent for the dam to go ahead, and have warned that if it does, the Xingu could become a ‘river of blood’.
They have held numerous protests against Belo Monte. Last month, thousands of people took to the streets worldwide, calling on the Brazilian government to halt the dam. Survival supporters delivered letters to the Brazilian embassies in Berlin, London, Paris and Madrid expressing their concerns for the Indians.
The Brazilian government issued the construction license for the dam earlier this year, disregarding a request from the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights that the licensing be suspended until the Indians’ rights are respected.