SUFFERING from battle stress, former Royal Marine Commando Craig MacLellan walked with his dog to recce the spot where he would take his own life.But as if she knew what he was about to do, Fudge the chocolate Labrador went rigid.Craig, 48, says: “She’d never done anything like it before and I actually said out loud, ‘I’m not going to do anything, girl’ and I kept my promise.”Instead, Craig contacted Combat Stress, which helps former service personnel suffering from mental health problems.The charity’s experts diagnosed Craig, who joined the Royal Marines at 16, as suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder.In 1989 he was at Deal Barracks in Kent when an IRA bomb went off, killing 11 Marines and injuring 21.Craig quit the Marines but later signed up for the Scots Guards, with whom he served in Northern Ireland.Craig says: “I saw horrific things that, even now, I can’t speak of. Friends were involved in … [Read more...] about Dogs like Boo can mean the difference between life and death for veterans
Can we save planet earth
NASA maintains a constant monitoring programme on asteroids, gigantic space rocks that can come close to Earth and even strike the planet.The next asteroid to zoom past Earth is 3200 Phaethon, which is due to brush “quite close” on December 17, Russian astronomers have revealed.It is an asteroid named after a foolhardy Greek god who nearly wiped out all life on our planet is hurtling towards earth.The space rock 3200 Phaethon is due to brush “quite close” on December 17, Russian astronomers have revealed.NASA has described the space rock as a "potentially hazardous asteroid whose path misses Earth’s orbit by only two million miles." Just up the road in space terms.The asteroid is about half the size of Chicxulub - which wiped out the dinosaurs - but was once a lot bigger.It's unusual orbit will see it pass closer to our sun than any other named asteroid.An asteroid is a small, airless rocky mass which orbits the sun, but is too small to be … [Read more...] about What are asteroids, when will 3200 Phaethon fly past Earth and could a meteor strike destroy the planet?
YOU might think that the only people who believe in aliens are forum-dwelling internet conspiracy theorists.But it turns out a lot of Nasa astronauts also think extraterrestrials are real and that they have been in touch with humanity for a long time.At least four celebrated spacemen have become famous for their outspoken beliefs about the existence of extraterrestrials.Some have seen UFOs soaring through the sky, while others claim to have been tipped off about alien contact by military top brass.Here are four Nasa astronauts who believe aliens are real.In 1971, Mitchell became the sixth person to walk on the moon.But he spent the rest of his life convinced that “aliens have been observing us and have been here for some time”.He once claimed that peace-loving aliens had visited Earth on a mission to save humanity from nuclear war and suggested the Vatican knows the truth about the existence of extraterrestrials.Mitchell also alleged that UFOs had been seen above … [Read more...] about Meet the Nasa astronauts who believe aliens are visiting Earth and communicating with humanity
A MASSIVE space rock is swinging by to say hello this Patrick's Day.The "near Earth asteroid" - which was discovered by Nasa earlier this year - will brush past on Friday.Nasa monitors "near Earth asteroids" or NEOs to predict possible collisions.This particular space rock is dubbed 2017 EG3.Potentially Hazardous Asteroids (PHAs) are space rocks larger than approximately 100m that can come closer to Earth than 0.05 AU.None of the known PHAs is on a collision course with our planet, although astronomers are finding new ones all the time.Fortunately for us, today's visitor is just 23m across and expected to come within four lunar distances, before continuing its journey around the Sun.Asteroid collisions have been blamed for extinction level events in the past, and some governments - including the US - have got plans for a potential impact.But it turns out that they could actually save lives.Scientists discovered that the metals in asteroid clay are great at … [Read more...] about Watch as St Patrick’s Day asteroid comes dangerously close to Earth in extraordinary Nasa video
NASA maintains a constant monitoring programme on asteroids, gigantic space rocks that can come close to Earth and even strike the planet.Earlier today (October 12) an asteroid approximately 30-metre-long called Asteroid 2012 TC4 passed close to our planet. But what would happen if one struck Earth.An asteroid is a small, airless rocky mass which orbits the sun, but is too small to be classed as a planet.Most of them are found in the Asteroid Belt - a ring which lies between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter.It's thought that asteroids are debris left over at the formation of the universe about 4.6 billion years ago.Some can be very large, but others can be tiny - even as small as a grain of sand - because of their smaller size, asteroids lack the gravitational pull to shape themselves into a sphere - meaning they usually have a rocky, irregular appearance.The asteroid dubbed 2012 TC4 first flitted past our planet in October 2012 at about double the distance before disappearing from … [Read more...] about What are asteroids, when did Asteroid 2012 TC4 fly past Earth and could a meteor strike destroy the planet?
On January 27, 2017, the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists moved the arms of its doomsday clock to 2.5 minutes to midnight – the closest it has been since 1953. Meanwhile, atmospheric carbon dioxide levels now hover above 400 parts per million.Why are these two facts related? Because they illustrate the two factors that could transport us beyond the Anthropocene – the geological epoch marked by humankind’s fingerprint on the planet – and into yet another new, even more hostile era of our own making.My new book, titled The Plutocene: Blueprints for a post-Anthropocene Greenhouse Earth, describes the future world we are on course to inhabit, now that it has become clear that we are still busy building nuclear weapons rather than working together to defend our planet.I have coined the term Plutocene to describe a post-Anthropocene period marked by a plutonium-rich sedimentary layer in the oceans.The Anthropocene is very short, having begun (depending on your … [Read more...] about Here’s what Planet Earth will be like in the ‘Plutocene’ era following an apocalyptic nuclear war
It's common sight in Germany to see toddlers younger than two rocketing along the sidewalk on a balance bike, a kind of parsed down bicycle without pedals. The kids push themselves along with their feet, often gliding along at considerable speeds. But what many don't realize is that this balance bike is a direct descendant of the world's first two-wheeler, invented in Germany in 1817. "It's ridiculously easy to ride," shouts bicycle enthusiast Martin Hauge as he takes a reproduction of the world's first bike for a spin. "You just need to keep one foot on the ground and kick alternatively with your left and right foot, steer, and you start to roll." The wooden proto-bike clatters loudly down a cobblestone street in the southwest German town of Karlsruhe, the birthplace of the bike's inventor: Baron Karl von Drais. Lacking cushioning rubber tires and weighing around 30 kilograms (66 pounds), it makes considerably more racket than balance bikes. And like the balance bike, the Draisine is … [Read more...] about Happy 200th birthday, bikes! Made in Germany, conquering the world and saving the Earth
In the foothills of snow-capped Mount Kenya, the grassy plains of Ol Pejeta Conservancy are home to an old-timer looking for love. It's a peaceful, if remote, spot. But if you can't get out and about, these days you can always hope to meet someone online. Love knows no boundaries, and a lack of opposable thumbs hasn't discouraged Sudan from getting into the internet dating game. He's 43 years old, six feet tall and close to 2.5 tons in weight. His Tinder profile lists wallowing in mud among his favorite pastimes. "I'm one of a kind," it reads. "No seriously, I'm the last male white rhino on planet earth. I don't mean to be too forward but the fate of my species literally depends on me. I perform well under pressure." The last of his kind Hunting and habitat loss have pushed northern white rhinos to the very edge of extinction. Sudan and two females, Najin and Fatu, make up the world's entire remaining population of their species. "He is the most amazing animal in the … [Read more...] about Swipe right to save the rhino
Research has found that habitat destruction and, to a lesser extent, over-hunting are putting life on earth "under a serious threat," according to a new report issued Thursday by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. The analysis of the Red List of Threatened Species, conducted every four years, comes ahead of an international deadline next year for governments to determine how successful they have been in reducing biodiversity loss. "Considering that only 2.7 percent of the 1.8 million described species have been analyzed, this number is a gross underestimate, but it does provide a useful snapshot of what is happening to all forms of life on earth," the IUCN said in a statement. Nations fail to meet biodiversity goals Nations aren't living up to the promises they made to protect biodiversity At least 16,928 species are threatened with extinction, the IUCN said, calling the number "a gross underestimate" that only provides a "snapshot" of the declining … [Read more...] about Reduced biodiversity puts planet at serious risk
With wisps of morning fog drifting across the surface of the Irrsee, ecologist Harald Ficker lowers a thermometer into the deep blue water to measure the Earth's global warming fever. Since the 1970s, the water has warmed about 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) - twice as fast as the global average. Although that may be nice for early-season visitors to the popular swimming lake near Salzburg, it's not so good for fish. Global warming has been disrupting ecosystems here, and in lakes around the world. As temperatures continue to rise, that will affect fisheries, water supplies, farming, recreation and energy production - prompting scientists to consider how to make lakes more resilient to climate change. Ficker monitors lakes for the Austrian environment ministry. As he takes readings at different depths, he describes the changes. In spring, the ice has been melting a month earlier than in 1975. With the ice gone, the top layer of water heats up. Measurements show that the … [Read more...] about Can we save our lakes from global warming?