Bees have become big business in California: Bees have become big business in California because they are an essential ingredient in the state’s yearly almond harvest, and three-quarters of America’s domesticated supply is trucked into the state each winter and rented out. The state’s total almond acreage has nearly tripled in the past 20 years, due in large part to foreign demand. Such growth has driven a near-manic demand for honeybees, which are crucial for what has become the largest managed annual pollination event in the world. The growth has also attracted bee thieves. READ MORE
Nearly half world’s population lives on $5.50 a day: Despite progress in reducing extreme poverty, nearly half the world’s population lives on less than $5.50 a day, with a rising share of the poor in wealthier economies, the World Bank said Wednesday. At the $5.50-a-day threshold, global poverty fell to 46 percent from 67 percent between 1990 and 2015. The bank reported last month that extreme poverty had fallen to 10 percent in 2015. READ MORE
How about fake fish? You’ve heard of veggie burgers and tofu dogs. Chances are you’ve even heard vegetarians and vegans mulling the relative benefits of choice meat substitutes such as Beyond Meat and the Impossible Burger. Fake fish options have remained much scarcer — at least until now. A new Wall Street Journal story looks at the rise of imitation tuna, shrimp, and even smoked salmon. The surprise conclusion: It’s pretty convincing to the tastebuds. READ MORE
Trump visits farmers whose crops were wiped out: President Donald Trump has heard from Georgia farmers whose crops were wiped out by Hurricane Michael. Trump on Monday visited a farm near Macon where fourth-generation farmer Kevin Rentz grows cotton and peanuts. Rentz said he lost 100 percent of his cotton crop. He says they’re still digging up peanuts but the problem is finding someplace to take them, given the power outages. READ MORE
Radioactive water: Water that the Japanese government is planning to release into the Pacific Ocean from the crippled Fukushima Dai-Ichi nuclear plant contains radioactive material well above legally permitted levels, according to the plant’s operator and documents seen by The Telegraph. The government is running out of space to store contaminated water that has come into contact with fuel that escaped from three nuclear reactors after the plant was destroyed in the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami that struck northeast Japan. READ MORE
Gene editing produces TGEV-resistant pigs: A team of researchers has successfully produced pigs that are genetically resistant to the deadly Transmissible Gastroenteritis Virus (TGEV), which infects the intestines of pigs and causes almost 100 percent mortality in young pigs. Researchers from the University of Missouri, Kansas State University and Genus plc used gene editing to breed the virus-resistant pigs. READ MORE
Vaccine will protect against anthrax, plague: A team of researchers has engineered a virus nanoparticle vaccine against Bacillus anthracis and Yersinia pestis, the pathogens that cause anthrax and plague. As tier 1 agents, they pose serious threats to national security of the United States. Using bacteriophage T4, scientists developed the vaccine by incorporating key antigens of both pathogens into one formulation. READ MORE
CDC investigates rare condition: A rare condition causing weakness in the arms or legs — and sometimes paralysis — has been confirmed in 62 children so far this year, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Tuesday. One child has died of the condition, called acute flaccid myelitis, or AFM. At least 65 more cases are under investigation. Read more HERE, HERE and HERE.
Brawl erupts outside a McDonald’s: Over a dozen juveniles were arrested and cited after police say a large brawl involving up to 200 school students erupted outside of a McDonald’s in the Hunting Park section of Philadelphia. Police say 14 juveniles were arrested or cited in the incident. Three officers were injured in the brawl. READ MORE
More than 1,000 still missing: More than a thousand people were still missing on Wednesday a week after Hurricane Michael flattened communities across the Florida Panhandle, killing at least 27. Major utilities say it will still take weeks to repair downed lines and poles and reconnect customers — and that’s only for the homes and businesses in good enough shape to “take electrical service.” The utilities also face a daunting challenge reassembling the shattered grid. Read more HERE and HERE.