Risk of Volcanic Eruption in Iceland Remains High

Steam rises from a fissure in a road near the town of Grindavik, Iceland Monday Nov. 13, 2023 following seismic activity. (AP)
Steam rises from a fissure in a road near the town of Grindavik, Iceland Monday Nov. 13, 2023 following seismic activity. (AP)
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Risk of Volcanic Eruption in Iceland Remains High

Steam rises from a fissure in a road near the town of Grindavik, Iceland Monday Nov. 13, 2023 following seismic activity. (AP)
Steam rises from a fissure in a road near the town of Grindavik, Iceland Monday Nov. 13, 2023 following seismic activity. (AP)

Seismic activity in southwestern Iceland decreased in size and intensity on Monday, but the risk of a volcanic eruption remained significant, authorities said, after earthquakes and evidence of magma spreading underground in recent weeks.

Almost 4,000 people were evacuated over the weekend as authorities feared that molten rock would rise to the surface of the earth and potentially hit a coastal town and a geothermal power station.

Located between the Eurasian and the North American tectonic plates, among the largest on the planet, Iceland is a seismic and volcanic hot spot as the two plates move in opposite directions.

The Icelandic Meteorological Office said on Monday there was a "significant likelihood" of an eruption in coming days on or just off the Reykjanes peninsula near the capital Reykjavik, despite the size and intensity of earthquakes decreasing.

"We believe that this intrusion is literally hovering, sitting in equilibrium now just below the earth's surface," said Matthew James Roberts, director of the service and research division at the meteorological office.

"We have this tremendous uncertainty now. Will there be an eruption and if so, what sort of damage will occur?" he said.

Thorvaldur Thordarson, professor in vulcanology at the University of Iceland, said most recent data indicated a smaller risk of an eruption in the area around the town of Grindavik.

Inhabitants of Grindavik described being whisked from their homes in the early hours of Saturday as the ground shook, roads cracked and buildings suffered structural damage.

Hans Vera, a Belgian-born 56-year-old who has lived in Iceland since 1999, said there had been a constant shaking of his family's house.

"You would never be steady, it was always shaking, so there was no way to get sleep," said Vera, who is now staying at his sister-in-law's home in a Reykjavik suburb.

"It's not only the people in Grindavik who are shocked about this situation it's the whole of Iceland."

Almost all of the town's 3,800 inhabitants had been able to find accommodation with family members or friends, and only between 50 and 70 people were staying at evacuation centers, a rescue official said.

Some evacuees were briefly allowed back into the town on Sunday to collect belongings such as documents, medicines or pets, but were not allowed to drive themselves.

"You have to park your car five kilometers from town and there's 20 cars, huge cars from the rescue team, 20 policemen, all blinking lights, it's just unreal, it's like a war zone or something, it's really strange," Vera said.

The Reykjanes peninsula is a volcanic and seismic hot spot southwest of the capital. In March 2021, lava fountains erupted spectacularly from a fissure in the ground measuring between 500-750 meters long in the region's Fagradalsfjall volcanic system.

Volcanic activity in the area continued for six months that year, prompting thousands of Icelanders and tourists to visit the scene. In August 2022, a three-week eruption happened in the same area, followed by another in July of this year.



Six-Planet Solar System in Perfect Synchrony Discovered in Milky Way

This illustration provided by the European Space Agency shows an artist's rendering of the Cheops telescope in orbit above Earth. Astronomers have discovered six planets orbiting a bright nearby star in perfect rhythmic harmony. (European Space Agency via AP)
This illustration provided by the European Space Agency shows an artist's rendering of the Cheops telescope in orbit above Earth. Astronomers have discovered six planets orbiting a bright nearby star in perfect rhythmic harmony. (European Space Agency via AP)
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Six-Planet Solar System in Perfect Synchrony Discovered in Milky Way

This illustration provided by the European Space Agency shows an artist's rendering of the Cheops telescope in orbit above Earth. Astronomers have discovered six planets orbiting a bright nearby star in perfect rhythmic harmony. (European Space Agency via AP)
This illustration provided by the European Space Agency shows an artist's rendering of the Cheops telescope in orbit above Earth. Astronomers have discovered six planets orbiting a bright nearby star in perfect rhythmic harmony. (European Space Agency via AP)

Astronomers have discovered a rare in-sync solar system with six planets moving like a grand cosmic orchestra, untouched by outside forces since their birth billions of years ago.

The find, announced Wednesday, can help explain how solar systems across the Milky Way galaxy came to be. This one is 100 light-years away in the constellation Coma Berenices. A light-year is 5.8 trillion miles.

A pair of planet-hunting satellites — NASA’s Tess and the European Space Agency’s Cheops — teamed up for the observations.

None of the planets in perfect synchrony are within the star’s so-called habitable zone, which means little if any likelihood of life, at least as we know it.

“Here we have a golden target” for comparison, said Adrien Leleu of the University of Geneva, who was part of an international team that published the results in the journal Nature.

This star, known as HD 110067, may have even more planets. The six found so far are roughly two to three times the size of Earth, but with densities closer to the gas giants in our own solar system. Their orbits range from nine to 54 days, putting them closer to their star than Venus is to the sun and making them exceedingly hot.

As gas planets, they're believed to have solid cores made of rock, metal or ice, enveloped by thick layers of hydrogen, according to the scientists. More observations are needed to determine what's in their atmospheres.

This solar system is unique because all six planets move similar to a perfectly synchronized symphony, scientists said. In technical terms, it’s known as resonance that's “precise, very orderly,” said co-author Enric Palle of the Institute of Astrophysics of the Canary Islands.

The innermost planet completes three orbits for every two by its closest neighbor. It's the same for the second- and third-closest planets, and the third- and fourth-closest planets.

The two outermost planets complete an orbit in 41 and 54.7 days, resulting in four orbits for every three. The innermost planet, meanwhile, completes six orbits in exactly the time the outermost completes one.

All solar systems, including our own, are thought to have started out like this one, according to the scientists. But it's estimated only 1-in-100 systems have retained that synchrony, and ours isn't one of them. Giant planets can throw things off-kilter. So can meteor bombardments, close encounters with neighboring stars and other disturbances.

While astronomers know of 40 to 50 in-sync solar systems, none have as many planets in such perfect step or as bright a star as this one, Palle said.

The University of Bern’s Hugh Osborn, who was part of the team, was “shocked and delighted” when the orbital periods of this star system’s planets came close to what scientists predicted.

“My jaw was on the floor,” he said. “That was a really nice moment.”


France Reports Bird Flu on Turkey Farm as Disease Spreads in Europe 

A hen stands next to an egg, Jan. 10, 2023, at a farm in Glenview, Ill. (AP)
A hen stands next to an egg, Jan. 10, 2023, at a farm in Glenview, Ill. (AP)
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France Reports Bird Flu on Turkey Farm as Disease Spreads in Europe 

A hen stands next to an egg, Jan. 10, 2023, at a farm in Glenview, Ill. (AP)
A hen stands next to an egg, Jan. 10, 2023, at a farm in Glenview, Ill. (AP)

France has detected an outbreak of highly pathogenic bird flu virus on a turkey farm in the northwest of the country, the agriculture ministry said on Tuesday, as a seasonal wave of infections spreads across Europe.

The outbreak in the Brittany region, France's first farm case this autumn, occurred near where an infected wild bird was found, the ministry said in a statement.

Several cases among wild birds have been recorded in recent days, it said, adding the government had raised its national alert level for bird flu to moderate from negligible.

Poultry flocks in areas particularly exposed to contact with wild birds would now be confined indoors, the ministry said.

Avian influenza, commonly known as bird flu, has led to the culling of hundreds of millions of birds in the past years. It usually strikes in Europe during autumn and winter and has recently been detected on farms in countries including Germany, the Netherlands, Italy, Croatia and Hungary.

To counter the disease, which has disrupted the supply of poultry meat and eggs and sent prices rocketing in parts of the world in recent years, France launched a vaccination campaign against bird flu in early October.

The French program is being initially limited to ducks, which are the most vulnerable to the virus. Ducks accounted for only 8% of total French poultry output in 2022.


Festival of Light and Art 'Noor Riyadh 2023' Returns November 30

Noor Riyadh festival in previous editions won eight Guinness World Records - SPA
Noor Riyadh festival in previous editions won eight Guinness World Records - SPA
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Festival of Light and Art 'Noor Riyadh 2023' Returns November 30

Noor Riyadh festival in previous editions won eight Guinness World Records - SPA
Noor Riyadh festival in previous editions won eight Guinness World Records - SPA

Noor Riyadh 2023, the largest lights and art festival in the world, announced the official launch of the ticket platform for visitors, which returns in its third edition under the slogan “The Bright Side of the Desert Moon” under the supervision of lead artistic curator Jérôme Sans (Lead Curator), and curators Pedro Alonzo, Alaa Tarabzouni, and Fahad bin Naif.

The celebration includes more than 120 artworks introduced by more than 100 artists from more than 35 countries, including 35 from the Kingdom.

The event is held in this year in partnership with the Ministry of Culture, the King Abdullah Financial District (KAFD), and the JAX District as celebration partners, in addition to the Kingdom Center and Al Khozama Investment Company as official partners, the Saudi Research and Media Group (SRMG) as a media partner, the Misk Art Institute as a program partner.

Nova, the Rouh El Saudia, the King Fahd National Library (KFNL), Via Riyadh, and Digital City are supporting partners, and AlTanfeethi is a hospitality partner, SPA reported.

Noor Riyadh festival director Nouf AlMoneef said this year's event is presented in a different and unique formula, inviting all visitors from all over the world to experience fun and amazing experiences in five centers in the capital, which include creative artistic works, in addition to hosting various dialogues and workshops.
She pointed out that the Noor Riyadh festival in previous editions won eight Guinness World Records, including the largest festival of lights in the world, where the number of visitors hit more than 2.8 million people.
This year, we look forward to welcoming art lovers and all members of society in an edition distinguished by its experiences and its various artistic activities, she added.
The Noor Riyadh festival includes 44 dialogue sessions, 122 workshops, 13 creative experiments, more than 1,000 guided tours, and more than 100 activities for families. Visitors can access all the events and reserve tickets allocated to all centers for free through the official website of Riyadh Art www.riyadhart.sa


Royal Commission for AlUla Participates in Saudi Green Initiative and COP28

Royal Commission for AlUla Participates in Saudi Green Initiative and COP28
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Royal Commission for AlUla Participates in Saudi Green Initiative and COP28

Royal Commission for AlUla Participates in Saudi Green Initiative and COP28

The Royal Commission for AlUla (RCU) is participating in the third edition of the Saudi Green Initiative (SGI) and the UN Climate Change Conference (COP28), which will be held in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, from November 30 to December 12.

RCU will showcase major efforts, initiatives and programs within the AlUla Vision and the AlUla Charter, SPA reported.

It will also participate in an exhibition to showcase its efforts. Several experts and specialists from the RCU will participate in the dialogue sessions on related topics.


What’s Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Year for 2023? Hint: Be True to Yourself 

Tesla CEO Elon Musk speaks before unveiling the Model Y at Tesla's design studio March 14, 2019, in Hawthorne, Calif. (AP)
Tesla CEO Elon Musk speaks before unveiling the Model Y at Tesla's design studio March 14, 2019, in Hawthorne, Calif. (AP)
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What’s Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Year for 2023? Hint: Be True to Yourself 

Tesla CEO Elon Musk speaks before unveiling the Model Y at Tesla's design studio March 14, 2019, in Hawthorne, Calif. (AP)
Tesla CEO Elon Musk speaks before unveiling the Model Y at Tesla's design studio March 14, 2019, in Hawthorne, Calif. (AP)

In an age of deepfakes and post-truth, as artificial intelligence rose and Elon Musk turned Twitter into X, the Merriam-Webster word of the year for 2023 is “authentic.”

Authentic cuisine. Authentic voice. Authentic self. Authenticity as artifice. Lookups for the word are routinely heavy on the dictionary company's site but were boosted to new heights throughout the year, editor at large Peter Sokolowski told The Associated Press in an exclusive interview.

“We see in 2023 a kind of crisis of authenticity,” he said ahead of Monday's announcement of this year's word. “What we realize is that when we question authenticity, we value it even more.”

Sokolowski and his team don't delve into the reasons people head for dictionaries and websites in search of specific words. Rather, they chase the data on lookup spikes and world events that correlate. This time around, there was no particularly huge boost at any given time but a constancy to the increased interest in “authentic.”

This was the year of artificial intelligence, for sure, but also a moment when ChatGPT-maker OpenAI suffered a leadership crisis. Taylor Swift and Prince Harry chased after authenticity in their words and deeds. Musk himself, at February's World Government Summit in Dubai, urged the heads of companies, politicians, ministers and other leaders to “speak authentically” on social media by running their own accounts.

“Can we trust whether a student wrote this paper? Can we trust whether a politician made this statement? We don't always trust what we see anymore,” Sokolowski said. “We sometimes don't believe our own eyes or our own ears. We are now recognizing that authenticity is a performance itself."

Merriam-Webster's entry for “authentic” is busy with meaning.

There is “not false or imitation: real, actual,” as in an authentic cockney accent. There's “true to one's own personality, spirit or character.” There's “worthy of acceptance or belief as conforming to or based on fact.” There is “made or done the same way as an original.” And, perhaps the most telling, there's “conforming to an original so as to reproduce essential features.”

“Authentic” follows 2022’s choice of “gaslighting.” And 2023 marks Merriam-Webster’s 20th anniversary choosing a top word.

The company’s data crunchers filter out evergreen words like “love” and “affect” vs. “effect” that are always high in lookups among the 500,000 words it defines online. This year, the wordsmiths also filtered out numerous five-letter words because Wordle and Quordle players clearly use the company’s site in search of them as they play the daily games, Sokolowski said.

Sokolowski, a lexicologist, and his colleagues have a bevy of runners-up for word of the year that also attracted unusual traffic. They include “X” (lookups spiked in July after Musk's rebranding of Twitter), “EGOT” (there was a boost in February when Viola Davis achieved that rare quadruple-award status with a Grammy) and “Elemental,” the title of a new Pixar film that had lookups jumping in June.

Rounding out the company's top words of 2023, in no particular order:

RIZZ: Slang for “romantic appeal or charm" and seemingly short for charisma. Merriam-Webster added the word to its online dictionary in September and it's been among the top lookups since, Sokolowski said.

KIBBUTZ: There was a massive spike in lookups for “a communal farm or settlement in Israel” after Hamas militants attacked several near the Gaza Strip on Oct. 7. The first kibbutz in Israel was founded circa 1909.

IMPLODE: The June 18 implosion of the Titan submersible on a commercial expedition to explore the Titanic wreckage sent lookups soaring for this word, meaning “to burst inward.” “It was a story that completely occupied the world,” Sokolowski said.

DOPPEL GANGER: Sokolowski calls this “a word lover's word.” Merriam-Webster defines it as a “double,” an “alter ego” or a “ghostly counterpart.” It derives from German folklore. Interest in the word surrounded Naomi Klein's latest book, “Doppelganger: A Trip Into the Mirror World,” released this year. She uses her own experience of often being confused with feminist author and conspiracy theorist Naomi Wolf as a springboard into a broader narrative on the crazy times we're all living in.

CORONATION: King Charles III had one on May 6, sending lookups for the word soaring 15,681% over the year before, Sokolowski said. Merriam-Webster defines it as “the act or occasion of crowning.”

DEEPFAKE: The dictionary company's definition is “an image or recording that has been convincingly altered and manipulated to misrepresent someone as doing or saying something that was not actually done or said.” Interest spiked after Musk’s lawyers in a Tesla lawsuit said he is often the subject of deepfake videos and again after the likeness of Ryan Reynolds appeared in a fake, AI-generated Tesla ad.

DYSTOPIAN: Climate chaos brought on interest in the word. So did books, movies and TV fare intended to entertain. “It's unusual to me to see a word that is used in both contexts,” Sokolowski said.

COVENANT: Lookups for the word meaning “a usually formal, solemn, and binding agreement” swelled on March 27, after a deadly mass shooting at The Covenant School in Nashville, Tennessee. The shooter was a former student killed by police after killing three students and three adults.

Interest also spiked with this year's release of “Guy Ritchie's The Covenant” and Abraham Verghese's long-awaited new novel, “The Covenant of Water,” which Oprah Winfrey chose as a book club pick.

More recently, soon after US Rep. Mike Johnson ascended to House speaker, a 2022 interview with the Louisiana congressman recirculated. He discussed how his teen son was then his “accountability partner” on Covenant Eyes, software that tracks browser history and sends reports to each partner when porn or other potentially objectionable sites are viewed.

INDICT: Former President Donald Trump has been indicted on felony charges in four criminal cases in New York, Florida, Georgia and Washington, D.C., in addition to fighting a lawsuit threatening his real estate empire.


Riyadh Season Draws 5 Million Visitors in Less Than a Month

Photo by SPA
Photo by SPA
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Riyadh Season Draws 5 Million Visitors in Less Than a Month

Photo by SPA
Photo by SPA

The number of visitors to Riyadh Season has exceeded 5 million since its launch on October 28, indicating a significant acceleration in the widespread interest in the Season's zones, diverse events, and its unique experiences.
The Riyadh Season stands out with its increasing entertainment momentum and the rising number of visits since its very beginning under the theme "Big Time."

Starting with its opening featuring "The Battle of the Baddest," attended by large numbers of visitors and renowned personalities from around the world, the event marked a unique milestone in the region, SPA reported.

The Season's visits are expected to double in the coming periods, given the increasing activities day by day. The Season organizes several exhibitions, festivals, and boxing matches, in addition to various exhibitions, festivals, and diverse events.
Riyadh Season marks its fourth edition under the theme "Big Time," featuring a diverse array of global entertainment options and experiences.


Heavy Snowfall in Romania, Bulgaria, and Moldova Leaves 1 Person Dead

A man shovels snow, as he tries to clear his car in town of Isperih, Northeast Bulgaria, Sunday, Nov. 26, 2023. (AP Photo/Bulgarian News Agency)
A man shovels snow, as he tries to clear his car in town of Isperih, Northeast Bulgaria, Sunday, Nov. 26, 2023. (AP Photo/Bulgarian News Agency)
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Heavy Snowfall in Romania, Bulgaria, and Moldova Leaves 1 Person Dead

A man shovels snow, as he tries to clear his car in town of Isperih, Northeast Bulgaria, Sunday, Nov. 26, 2023. (AP Photo/Bulgarian News Agency)
A man shovels snow, as he tries to clear his car in town of Isperih, Northeast Bulgaria, Sunday, Nov. 26, 2023. (AP Photo/Bulgarian News Agency)

Heavy snowfall and strong blizzards in Romania and Moldova on Sunday left one person dead and hundreds of localities without electricity, as well as forcing the closure of some national roads, authorities said.

A 40-year-old man in Moldova died on Sunday after the vehicle he was in skidded off the road and crashed into a tree, Moldova’s national police said, adding that six road accidents had been reported by about midday.

“We repeatedly appeal to drivers not to hit the road with unequipped cars and to drive at low speed,” Moldovan police said in a statement posted on Telegram, and warned against driving “without an urgent need.”

In Romania, red weather warnings were issued in the eastern counties of Constanta, Tulcea, Galati, and Braila where winds were forecast to reach as high as 100 kph (62 mph), the National Meteorological Administration said.

Romania's Minister of Energy Sebastian Burduja told The Associated Press on Sunday that more than 400 localities had suffered electrical outages.

Emergency authorities said that both national and local roads in the four counties were closed on Sunday. Officials in the counties of Constanta and Braila reported that at least 69 localities had been left without electricity but that teams had been deployed to fix the outages. Other, less severe weather warnings were also issued to other parts of Romania.

In neighboring Bulgaria, powerful winter storms also brought heavy snowfall and prompted the government to declare a state of emergency on Sunday in large parts of the country. More than 1,000 settlements, mostly in Bulgaria's northeast, were left without electricity on Sunday, according to Prime Minister Nikolay Denkov.

Two people in Bulgaria had died in traffic accidents and 36 were left injured during the stormy weather in the last 24 hours. Strong winds also closed roads, caused traffic accidents and travel delays, and downed trees and power lines, Denkov said.


Heat, Disease, Air Pollution: How Climate Change Impacts Health

Air pollution, such as the extremes seen in India's capital New Delhi, are just one way that fossil fuels affect human health. Arun SANKAR / AFP/File
Air pollution, such as the extremes seen in India's capital New Delhi, are just one way that fossil fuels affect human health. Arun SANKAR / AFP/File
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Heat, Disease, Air Pollution: How Climate Change Impacts Health

Air pollution, such as the extremes seen in India's capital New Delhi, are just one way that fossil fuels affect human health. Arun SANKAR / AFP/File
Air pollution, such as the extremes seen in India's capital New Delhi, are just one way that fossil fuels affect human health. Arun SANKAR / AFP/File

Growing calls for the world to come to grips with the many ways that global warming affects human health have prompted the first day dedicated to the issue at crunch UN climate talks starting next week.
Extreme heat, air pollution and the increasing spread of deadly infectious diseases are just some of the reasons why the World Health Organization has called climate change the single biggest health threat facing humanity.
Global warming must be limited to the Paris Agreement target of 1.5 degrees Celsius "to avert catastrophic health impacts and prevent millions of climate change-related deaths", according to the WHO.
However, under current national carbon-cutting plans, the world is on track to warm up to 2.9C this century, the UN said this week.
While no one will be completely safe from the effects of climate change, experts expect that most at risk will be children, women, the elderly, migrants and people in less developed countries which have emitted the least planet-warming greenhouse gases.
On December 3, the COP28 negotiations in Dubai will host the first "health day" ever held at the climate negotiations.
- Extreme heat -
This year is widely expected to be the hottest on record. And as the world continues to warm, even more frequent and intense heatwaves are expected to follow.
Heat is believed to have caused more than 70,000 deaths in Europe during summer last year, researchers said this week, revising the previous number up from 62,000.
Worldwide, people were exposed to an average of 86 days of life-threatening temperatures last year, according to the Lancet Countdown report earlier this week.
The number of people over 65 who died from heat rose by 85 percent from 1991-2000 to 2013-2022, it added.
And by 2050, more than five times more people will die from the heat each year under a 2C warming scenario, the Lancet Countdown projected.
More droughts will also drive rising hunger. Under the scenario of 2C warming by the end of the century, 520 million more people will experience moderate or severe food insecurity by 2050.
Meanwhile, other extreme weather events such as storms, floods and fires will continue to threaten the health of people across the world.
Air pollution
Almost 99 percent of the world's population breathes air that exceeds the WHO's guidelines for air pollution.
Outdoor air pollution driven by fossil fuel emissions kills more than four million people every year, according to the WHO.
It increases the risk of respiratory diseases, strokes, heart disease, lung cancer, diabetes and other health problems, posing a threat that has been compared to tobacco.
The damage is caused partly by PM2.5 microparticles, which are mostly from fossil fuels. People breathe these tiny particles into their lungs, where they can then enter the bloodstream.
While spikes in air pollution, such as extremes seen in India's capital New Delhi earlier this month, trigger respiratory problems and allergies, long-term exposure is believed to be even more harmful.
However it is not all bad news.
The Lancet Countdown report found that deaths from air pollution due to fossil fuels have fallen 16 percent since 2005, mostly due to efforts to reduce the impact of coal burning.
Infectious diseases
The changing climate means that mosquitoes, birds and mammals will roam beyond their previous habitats, raising the threat that they could spread infectious diseases with them.
Mosquito-borne diseases that pose a greater risk of spreading due to climate change include dengue, chikungunya, Zika, West Nile virus and malaria.
The transmission potential for dengue alone will increase by 36 percent with 2C warming, the Lancet Countdown report warned.
Storms and floods create stagnant water that are breeding grounds for mosquitoes, and also increase the risk of water-borne diseases such as cholera, typhoid and diarrhea.
Scientists also fear that mammals straying into new areas could share diseases with each other, potentially creating new viruses that could then jump over to humans.
Mental health
Worrying about the present and future of our warming planet has also provoked rising anxiety, depression and even post-traumatic stress -- particularly for people already struggling with these disorders, psychologists have warned.
In the first 10 months of the year, people searched online for the term "climate anxiety" 27 times more than during the same period in 2017, according to data from Google Trends cited by the BBC this week.


Saudi Researcher at Harvard University Discovers Uses of Sugammadex to Reverse Neuromuscular Blockade via Non-Surgery

A seal hangs over a building at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts November 16, 2012. REUTERS/Jessica Rinaldi/File
A seal hangs over a building at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts November 16, 2012. REUTERS/Jessica Rinaldi/File
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Saudi Researcher at Harvard University Discovers Uses of Sugammadex to Reverse Neuromuscular Blockade via Non-Surgery

A seal hangs over a building at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts November 16, 2012. REUTERS/Jessica Rinaldi/File
A seal hangs over a building at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts November 16, 2012. REUTERS/Jessica Rinaldi/File

Dr. Shaima Al-Zaidi, a scholarship student from the Faculty of Pharmacy at Taif University, conducted a critical care research study during her Harvard University residency, SPA said on Sunday.
The study found that using “Sugammadex” effectively reverses neuromuscular blockade outside surgical operations.
In a statement to the Saudi Press Agency(SPA), Dr. Shaima said that the drug “Sugammadex” was approved by the US Food and Drug Administration in 2015 for use in surgical operations. She and her research team evaluated the uses of Sugammadex outside operating rooms and disseminated medical practices at Burgham Hospital, the second-largest teaching hospital at Harvard Medical School and the largest hospital in the Longwood Medical Area in Boston, Massachusetts.
The research has been accepted for presentation at the Critical Care Medical Conference, and the results will be published in Arizona in January 2024.
Dr. Shaima also praised the hospital for its excellence, citing how it provided her with opportunities to learn about the latest medical experiments in creating various medicines, thereby enhancing her experience. She expressed gratitude to the Saudi leadership for investing in human resources by enrolling professionals from renowned international universities across different specialties.
Dr. Shaimaa was honored with the Scientific Excellence Award and graduated among the first in the professional Ph.D. program in pharmacy at the Medical University of South Carolina. Subsequently, she joined the general pharmacy residency program at Brigham Hospital, affiliated with Harvard Medical University. Currently, she is completing a specialty residency program in critical care at the same hospital.


New Study: Prehistoric Women Hunted like Men

The limestone cave painting, which was found on the island of Sulawesi, depicts hunters chasing wild animals. Reuters
The limestone cave painting, which was found on the island of Sulawesi, depicts hunters chasing wild animals. Reuters
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New Study: Prehistoric Women Hunted like Men

The limestone cave painting, which was found on the island of Sulawesi, depicts hunters chasing wild animals. Reuters
The limestone cave painting, which was found on the island of Sulawesi, depicts hunters chasing wild animals. Reuters

Historians and anthropologists believed for decades that prehistoric men were responsible for hunting, while women formed groups to collect preys. However, two recent studies found that not only did prehistoric women engage in the practice of hunting, but their female anatomy and biology would have made them better suited for it.

According to the Science Daily website, the two studies, which physiologically evaluated prehistoric women based on fossil remains, found that prehistoric females were quite capable of performing the arduous physical task of hunting prey and were likely able to hunt successfully "over prolonged periods of time."

The researchers found that the female body is better suited for endurance activity, "which would have been critical in early hunting because they would have had to run the animals down into exhaustion before actually going in for the kill."

Two huge contributors are the estrogen and adiponectin hormones, which are typically present in higher quantities in female bodies than in male, and play a critical role in enabling the female body to modulate glucose and fat, a function that is key in athletic performance.

Estrogen, in particular, plays a major role in fat metabolism, helps women going longer and can delay fatigue. Researchers added that with the typically wider hip structure of the female, women are able to rotate their hips, which lengthen their steps.

“The longer the steps they take, the less metabolically costly they are, the greater the distance they can travel, and the faster they can go,” they added.

"When you look at human physiology this way, you can think of women as the marathon runners versus men as the powerlifters," said Cara Ocoboc, co-author of the study from the University of Notre Dame.