Monday, April 19, 2010

Happy Birthday, Israel

I stand with IsraelTonight at sundown Jews around the world will begin celebrating the 62nd birthday of the modern nation of Israel. On the Hebrew calendar, Israel's Independence Day was the 5th day of Iyar (May 14, 1948) which this year falls on April 20th on our calendar.

It is difficult to overestimate the importance of Israel. Never again will our national survival depend on the kindness of strangers.

Am Yisrael chai!

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Jerusalem to Join Lights Out for Planet Earth Campaign

Planet EarthJerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat and Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin are scheduled to take part in a ceremony on April 22 to turn off lights on the walls of the capital's Old City and the Tower of David as part of an annual event on behalf of energy conservation. Fourteen other Israeli cities are taking part.

The lights on the landmarks will be turned off between 8:10 and 9:10 p.m. Residents are being asked to turn off lights in their homes, businesses, offices and public buildings as well.

Source: Israel National News

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Organic Approach To Pest Control

An insect
Israeli researchers are trying an organic approach to pest control by releasing super-sexed but sterile male insects.

The principle is to rear millions of individuals of the species you seek to control, separate the sexes, sterilize the males and release them into the field. If the sterile males copulate with wild females, the females will be unable to lay fertile eggs, thus reducing the pest populations.

Prof. Boaz Yuval of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem's Robert H. Smith Faculty of Agriculture, Food and Environment is working on upgrading this veteran approach, known as the sterile insect technique. The method is currently employed against several dozen insect species.

Since the process can adversely affect the male insects' sexual competitiveness, Yuval and his fellow researchers are formulating a high-protein, bacteria enhanced "breakfast of champions" for the males which should significantly improve their sexual performance when released in the field. Their work is described in the International Society for Microbial Ecology Journal.

Yuval believes that this approach can be applied to a variety of plant and animal pests, as well as to organisms that transmit human disease.

The scientists hope to offer an efficient and promising avenue for supplying produce to the market by eliminating pests without negatively impacting human health or the environment.

Source: Israel21c