Archive by category | International Relations

Stephen Hawking’s ‘boycott’ of Israeli conference not due to health reasons

Physicist Stephen Hawking’s confirmation that he will not be attending a conference in Israel has re-ignited long-simmering debate over boycotts of the country by some researchers. But the University of Cambridge insists the decision was taken on medical grounds.  Read more

US frees Iranian scientist accused of illegal trade

Sayed Mojtaba Atorodi, a professor of electrical engineering at Teheran’s Sharif University of Technology who was held in prison in the United States since 7 December 2011, was released and returned to Iran on 27 April, according to the Iranian government-funded PressTV.  Read more

Political thaw raises hopes for refrigerant regulations

Political thaw raises hopes for refrigerant regulations

This week China budged. Depending on one’s perspective, it wasn’t much of a concession. The country agreed, in essence, to do what it and everybody else had already agreed to do back in 2007: accelerate the phase out of a common class of ozone-eating refrigerants that double as powerful greenhouse gases. But rather than haggling over prices each step of the way, China made it simple and cut a single deal – worth up to $385 million – to eliminate hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs) between now and 2030.  Read more

Scientists voice support for student to mark two years of his jailing in Iran

Scientists voice support for student to mark two years of his jailing in Iran

Scientists and students at the University of Texas in Austin released a short documentary about Omid Kokabee, a doctoral student at that university, on 30 January to mark his second year of detention in Iran on a controversial conspiracy sentence.  Read more

India may go to the Moon alone

BANGALORE — The Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO), which had planned to put a rover on the lunar surface on its second moon mission sometime in 2015, will be doing it all by itself and not as a joint venture with Russia as was originally proposed.  Read more

Research beagles released as pets

Beagle dogs at the Chennai quarantine facility await transfer to rescue groups.

Seventy beagle puppies originally intended for pharmacology research were released to adoptive families in India on Saturday, several weeks after activists alerted the Indian government that the animals had been falsely described as “pets” by the contract research organization seeking to import them.  Read more

Bosch quits Desertec

The world’s most ambitious renewable energy project suffered another blow yesterday when the Germany technology supplier Bosch announced it was pulling out of the DESERTEC solar project. Stuttgart-based Bosch, the world’s biggest supplier of car parts, said it will quit the Desertec Industrial Initiative (Dii) by the end of the year.  Read more

Japan’s nuclear sun to set?

Japan's nuclear sun to set?

A week can be a long time in politics, so today’s announcement by the Japanese government that it intends to phase out its 50 remaining nuclear reactors by around the 2030s is perhaps much less of a certainty than it might at first appear. Under the plan, existing reactors would be phased out when they reach 40 years of age so causing a gradual fall in nuclear’s share of electricity generation in Japan, as no new reactors are built to replace them.  Read more