Tuesday 29 April 1997
You thought nuclear power was dead? Not so. According to the International Atomic Energy Authority, five new plants with a combined capacity of 5,717 megawatts came on stream in 1996, bringing the total number currently operating around the world to 443. Nuclear power provides an average of 17 per cent of the world's electricity - though significantly more in Lithuania, which tops the list by relying on fission for 86 per cent of its power. France, which has 57 reactors - second only to the US, with 110 - is next, using it for 77 per cent of output. Ukraine, site of the world's worst nuclear accident at Chernobyl in 1986, has 16 reactors in operation, providing almost 44 per cent of its electricity.
A significant step for genetic testing: Any couple in the United States planning to have children should be offered a test for cystic fibrosis, said a panel of experts there convened by the National Institutes of Health. It is the first time in any country that such a genetic test for a disease has been recommended for the general population, not just those specifically known to be at risk. CF is the most common inherited disease among American Caucasians, with about 1 in 30 people there carrying the recessive gene for the disease. The panel did not push for routine screening of newborn children.
Perhaps it was the clothes. Greenpeace activists dressed in tomato costumes last week got the Greek government to say that it would consider scrapping private research into genetically altered tomatoes. The Greek government already opposes the production, import and use of genetically engineered food, but it may now rescind a permit granted in March to the British company Zeneca to experiment with tomatoes to extend their ripening time and give them a longer shelf-life in stores. Ministry officials said they were prepared to cancel the research permit if presented with new evidence that it was dangerous. Although Zeneca is keeping the tomatoes in a greenhouse, Greenpeace said there was no way of preventing the results of the work reaching the environment outside via insects and pollen.
Simon Calder looks at communities fighting back against the poachers
Arsenal 1 Everton 1: Substitute equalises with six minutes to go
booksGeese, gorillas, grandads... and growing up
Guide dog mauled while helping owner deliver Christmas cards
The poorest pay the price for austerity: Workers face biggest fall in living standards since Victorian era
Nelson Mandela’s complex bond with Britain
Deadly ice storm sees US temperatures drop to -29C
10 stone five-year-old taken into care
- 1 A forgotten episode in Russian history leaves links with the Philippines
- 2 Turning up the voice of America
- 3 The man who made Femen: New film outs Victor Svyatski as the mastermind behind the protest group and its breast-baring stunts
- 4 Mass murder in the Middle East is funded by our friends the Saudis
- 5 Japan cracks down on leaks after scandal of Fukushima nuclear power plant
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