Category Archives: News

news

Saddam’s gold discovered in Iraqi tank by British military restorers

By; Josh Robbins

Coke Hopes No One Notices All The Plastic Bottles Floating In The Ocean 

After a recent controversial Pepsi ad incited outrage on the Internet, an advocacy group is calling on soda drinkers to express the same level of concern over the questionable environmental practices of the soft drink company’s biggest competitor, Coca-Cola.

A new report from Greenpeace UK calls out Coke on a number of points, including its excessive reliance on single-use plastic ― which is damaging to oceans and marine life. Greenpeace also criticized Coke, the world’s largest soft drink company, for its reluctance to set a new industry standard for incorporating recycled plastic into its packaging.

Coke told The Huffington Post in a statement that it’s doing more to tackle the issue of marine litter. But Greenpeace is eager to see the global company take more tangible steps to significantly reduce the amount of plastics it introduces into the environment.

ERIC GAILLARD / REUTERS
According to Greenpeace UK, Coca-Cola sells about 108 to 128 billion plastic bottles every year.

If current pollution rates remain unchanged, there will be more plastic than fish (by weight) in the ocean by 2050. Coke won’t publicly release figures related to the amount of plastic bottles it produces, so Greenpeace conducted its own evaluation of the matter.

Greenpeace estimated that coke sells 108 to 128 billion plastic bottles every year, based on Coke’s annual sales figures of certain product lines and their proportion in the company’s overall packaging mix.

“Coca-Cola needs to accept responsibility for the damage its products are causing to the marine environment,” Greenpeace said in its report.

Coke said PET plastic ― the kind of plastic environmentalists want to see less of ― makes up 58 percent of its total packaging. While Coke’s bottles are recyclable, that’s not enough to prevent them from ending up in the oceans or to protect marine life from ingesting pieces of them.

Recyclable materials still find their way into bodies of water and landfills due to a lack of recycling infrastructure, consumers’ reluctance to recycle and other issues.

TIRC83 VIA GETTY IMAGES
A Coke bottle floats in the Pacific Ocean.

Greenpeace says it wants to see Coke lead the way in the soft drink industry by using recycled plastic in its bottle production. That would reduce the amount of new bottles being made, and cut back on wasted materials. Currently, newly manufactured plastic is cheap, while recyclable plastic, due to a lack of demand, is pricy ― which is why companies aren’t eager to use it.

April Crow, Coke’s senior director of environment and sustainability, told HuffPost last month that the beverage company is making efforts to ramp up its usage of recycled materials when it’s “economically and physically feasible.”

Recycled plastic has been approved for regulatory food-grade use in 44 countries of the more than 200 where Coke operates. In those places, the company buys almost 20 percent of the recycled plastic available.

Coke hasn’t set any global targets for boosting recycled content across its product lines. The company’s European arm, however, has vowed to source two-fifths of its plastic bottle material from recycled or renewable sources by 2020.

Greenpeace also takes issue with the fact that Coke has significantly scaled back on an important green practice. According to the report, the amount of refillable containers it uses dropped from 31 percent of its global product packaging to 25 percent from 2008 to 2015.

“Rather than reducing the number of single-use plastic bottles it produces, Coke is investing in even more throwaway plastic,” Louise Edge, senior oceans campaigner at Greenpeace UK, said in a statement. “We’d love for Coke to come clean on its plastic footprint and provide detailed breakdowns of what it produces annually.”

Via: Coke Hopes No One Notices All The Plastic Bottles Floating In The Ocean

Mercury Retrograde Has Begun! 

STIRR OF ECHOES

Its official, Mercury has gone retrograde and with it comes the possibility of technical communication break downs, misunderstandings, mental sluggishness and travel interferences. Mercury rules communication, and though it doesn’t rule the mind it certainly uses the mind as tool for communication.

In Roman mythology Mercury was a major god controlling financial gain, commerce, travelers, luck, boundaries and trickery. Our contemporary definitions of the planet Mercury come from the ancient mythology of Egypt, Roman and Greek cultures.

Astrology is the study and understanding of the cosmos and its influence in our daily lives. Just as the moon pulls the tides, every planet has an energetic correlation and influence in our lives. What is happening in the cosmos is also occurring within our lives as well. As within so without.

The current Mercury Retrograde season, like every one before it, will offer us the opportunity to review the past several months of our lives, with the intention to course correct, release and reboot. Mercury will be retrograding through the sign of Taurus, a fixed earth sign and Aries, a cardinal fire sign.

What does Mercury Retrograde in Taurus mean?

When Mercury goes retrograde it means we slow down, become more mindful and allow ourselves to recuperate from the accomplishments, stresses and progress of the last quarter of our lives. Mercury retrograding in Taurus, asks us to re-look at our spending habits, how we think and feel about our surroundings and ourselves. And because Taurus is a fixed earth sign, bullish by nature and slow to move, Mercury retrograde will surely impact our material world, the things we use daily and need to feel comfortable and secure in our homes. Oh did I say money? This retrograde season will surely effect influence on our relationship with money and how money impacts how we feel about ourselves.

When Mercury returns to Aries, the energy and intensity will shift from the slow, methodical and deliberate Taurus, to an enthusiastic, hasty, passionate, independent energy of Aries. Aries is the sign that begins the western astrological chart, so you can anticipate delays in new projects, ideas and efforts, which will dampen that Aries fire.

The best way to understand how Mercury Retrograde is relevant to each and every person in unique ways on the planet is to recognize that communication is a cornerstone of everyone’s life. We are beings who rely on our ability and need to communicate in order to survive and thrive. Communication is a function of our mind power which influences our thinking and feelings. When Mercury is in retrograde, our mind can be slower and our communication less effective and clear. And this is why many astrologers suggest waiting until the retrograde is over before signing contracts, starting new jobs or projects. It’s a long-standing feeling that when things begin during a Mercury Retrograde, it’s likely it will not be long lasting.

This belief has generated a great deal of fear for those who follow astrology closely. Therefore, me and my co-creator, Kelly Lynn Prime, designed the Mercury Retrograde Reset program to help participants harness this energy and use it toward flourishing rather than fear and chaos.

Our system instructs participants with daily astrological forecasting and offers tools such as affirmations, meditations, crystals, oils and personal readings to align with the energies. Once aligned with the energies it is easier to slow down, recollect and prepare. It has been my experience that retrogrades slow us down, but when they’re complete, they propel us forward dramatically further along than we were prior to the retrograde season. It’s three steps backward and nine steps forward. Knowing this little secret makes it easy to surrender and allow what needs to be released to go, because one can be assured that new life and new opportunities will be presented when the retrograde is over.

For more information follow us on Instagram @mercuryretrogradereset1 or on Facebook at Mercury Retrograde Reset. You may also email us directly at mercuryretrogradereset@gmail.com or visit our website at Mercuryretrogradereset.com. The days of doom and gloom with Mercury Retrograde are over. Come learn to flow and grow.

Via: Mercury Retrograde Has Begun! 

Watch This Cat Lose Its Mind After Faced With An Optical Illusion 

What could be more entertaining than a cat and a laser pointer? Apparently, a cat and some cleverly applied ink on paper.

A curious cat was filmed absolutely losing its mind after catching sight of an optical illusion, prompting it to declare war on the mesmerizing circles.

The frustrated cat resorted to clawing and tearing the paper with its teeth after laying eyes on the “rotating snakes” design, which appears to move on its own.

YOUTUBE
The cat resorted to biting and tearing the paper after watching the mind-bending illusions.

The cat’s fixation proved to be equally entertaining for humans, as the two-minute video collected more than one million views within two days of its upload.

This is not the first cat to fall victim to such mind-bending illusions, however. A quick search on YouTube reveals a number of other cats that have been hypnotized by the spinning circles, causing them to pounce and swat at the designs.

Want to try this optical illusion for yourself? Check out the entertaining design here as well as some others.

Via: Watch This Cat Lose Its Mind After Faced With An Optical Illusion 

You can buy a copy of the Sex Pistols’ ‘God Save the Queen’ for $10,000 

A copy of the Sex Pistols’ 1977 record fetched more than any other album, according to a recent ranking.

The money vinyl collectors can earn by selling the most expensive record in the world could fuel a rainy-day fund fit for a queen.

A copy of the Sex Pistols’ “God Save the Queen” from 1977 fetches $10,578, more than any other album in the world, according to a list created by online casino MrGamez. Only 25,000 copies of the record were made, and just nine exist with the original sleeve from the now-defunct A&M records. The record itself sold out in six days.

The list was produced based on the auction results of albums on eBayEBAY, -0.73%  in the U.K. Coming in the No. 2 and No. 3 spots were two records from The Beatles: “Please Please Me” ($8,323) and “Introducing…The Beatles” ($7,573). The Beatles’ “Yesterday and Today” also made the top 25, coming in at No. 16 with a price point of $3,351, and Paul McCartney’s “RAM” took the No. 5 spot with a value of $5,048.

 

Other albums have previously fetched higher prices than those on this list. In 2015, Ringo Starr’s personal copy of The Beatles’ “White Album” achieved a world record after selling for $790,000. (The pre-auction estimate, according to Rolling Stone, was between $40,000 and $60,000.) And last year, pharmaceutical executive Martin Shkreli reportedly paid $2 million to buy the only copy of Wu-Tang Clan’s “Once Upon a Time in Shaolin,” dubbed the most expensive album ever created.

Rock music is the most popular genre represented on MrGamerz’s list, with 10 of the 25 albums. Classical music comes in at a close second, with nine records on the list. Other genres featured include jazz, hip-hop, ska and adult contemporary. Many of the records making the list were limited releases. Case in point: Only one or two copies were made of the early hip-hop group Natives in Black’s “Sick of da B******t,” which came in at No. 23 with a price of $2,894.05.

Forty years later, Johnny Lydon, 61, (or “Johnny Rotten” as he is also known) who was the lead singer of the Sex Pistols, is still as outspoken as ever. When Virgin credit cards branded with The Sex Pistols were released in 2015, Lydon told MarketWatch, “How anarchistic can you get? Do you not love irony? I know I do. In many ways it’s an accolade attesting to our history and only misunderstood by fools.”

Via: You can buy a copy of the Sex Pistols’ ‘God Save the Queen’ for $10,000

15 Percent Of The World’s Tree Species Are Under Threat Of Extinction 

GETTY IMAGES
Botanic Gardens Conservation International unveiled the first-ever database of all the world’s tree species this week. 

The planet is on the brink of the sixth mass extinction, an epoch that scientists say could see humans wiping out at least 75 percent of the Earth’s species. Much has already been made of humans’ impact on wildlife. Last year, a damning World Wildlife Fund report revealed that people were on track to killing off two-thirds of the world’s vertebrates.

But it’s not just birds and bears that are facing extinction due to human activity. Thousands of tree species are under threat as well, according to the first global database of the world’s trees, unveiled this week by Botanic Gardens Conservation International.

The UK-based organization, whose members include hundreds of botanical institutions worldwide, said it pulled data from more than 500 published sources to create the online database GlobalTreeSearch, the world’s first “global, authoritative list of tree species.” BGCI, in collaboration with the International Union for Conservation of Nature, identified 60,065 tree species currently living on Earth. Of that number, more than half were found to only occur in a single country, which could suggest an increased vulnerability to threats, said the authors of the database.

60,065 times – that’s how often @bgci asked, “What tree is this?” Take a look at their new database on tree species: http://bit.ly/2nHZ831 

The researchers described their findings in a paper published this week in the Journal of Sustainable Forestry. According to the paper, the conservation status of only about 20,000 tree species, or 30 percent of the world’s trees, are currently known. But of those assessed, almost half ― or 9,600 tree species ― are considered threatened with extinction. This means that around 15 percent of all tree species are under threat.

More than 300 species are critically endangered, with just 50 or fewer individual trees left on the planet, the researchers said. One particular species, the Karomia gigas, or Chinese Hats tree, was found to have only one population of trees still living — just six trees in a remote part of Tanzania. The researchers said the tree had been driven to extinction from over harvesting for construction and furniture-making.

Deforestation and over exploitation were found to be the leading threats facing the world’s trees, according to the paper. 

Compiling the database was a massive undertaking, said BCGI.

“Although it seems extraordinary that it has taken us until 2017 to publish the first global, authoritative list of tree species, it is worth remembering that GlobalTreeSearch represents a huge scientific effort encompassing the discovery, collection and describing of tens of thousands of plant species,” said Paul Smith, BGCI’s secretary general, in a statement this week. “This is ‘big science’ involving the work of thousands of botanists over a period of centuries.”

BCGI said it hopes the database will serve as an important tool for tree conservation. The database ― which lists the geographical distribution of tree species ― could, for instance, help conservationists locate individual species, said Smith.
“Getting location information, such as which countries do these trees occur in, gives us key information for conservation purposes. That is hugely useful for us in prioritizing which ones we need to do conservation action on and which ones we need to do assessments to find out what their status is,” he said.

Via: At Least 15 Percent Of The World’s Tree Species Are Under Threat Of Extinction 

Japan Has Got To Be The Most Beautiful Place On Earth Right Now 

If you didn’t catch any cherry blossoms this year, never fear: Japan’s wisteria season is nearly here, and there’s still enough time to plan a trip before the big bloom.

Japanese wisteria is a flowering plant with cascading blossoms that can grow up to three feet or longer. The flowers bloom between April and May each year, turning gardens and parks into the technicolor Instagram scene of your dreams:

BISCUT VIA GETTY IMAGES
Kawachi Fujien Wisteria Garden

? PETER LOURENCO VIA GETTY IMAGES
A wisteria tree lit up at dusk

HAYASHI KATSUTOSHI / EYEEM VIA GETTY IMAGES
Kawachi Fujien Wisteria Garden

In Japan, there are two wisteria wonderlands travelers adore: Ashikaga Flower Park, reachable by train from Tokyo, will feature more than 350 wisteria trees in full bloom during this year’s Great Wisteria Festival from April 15 to May 22.Be sure to stick around until nighttime for light-up wisteria displays and a plate of wisteria-flavored noodles at Ashikaga’s onsite cafe.

Kawachi Fujien Wisteria Garden, in the city of Kitakyushu, offers ticketed admission from April 22 to May 7.

DREAMNIKON VIA GETTY IMAGES
Ashikaga Flower Park

MASAHIRO NOGUCHI VIA GETTY IMAGES
Ashikaga Flower Park

Via: Japan Has Got To Be The Most Beautiful Place On Earth Right Now