Today on Planet 100: Super Mosquitoes Fight Dengue (Video)
Today, on Planet 100, genetically engineered mosquitoes are put to use fighting dengue fever, London plans to fight pollution with a spray-on paste, and the search for the next green "it" girl begins.GM Mosquitoes
Swarms of genetically modified mosquitoes could be released into the wild to combat dengue fever around the world.
Scientists are using sterile males to mate with infected females in the fight to curtail spread of disease that kills 25,000 people a year. A small-scale trial of the strategy, which was carried out in the Cayman Islands, had cut mosquito numbers by an impressive 80% in six months.
The World Health Organization estimates there are 50m cases of dengue fever a year. About 2.5 billion people are at risk, mostly in Africa and south-east Asia.
Read more about mosquitoes and dengue:
Malaysia Messes With Mosquito Genes to Fight Dengue Fever
Novel Dengue Fever Control Strategy: Adult Mosquitos Deliver Poison To Offspring
Climate Change Too Abstract For You? Dengue Fever Could Spread to 28 U.S. States
London Mayor, Boris Johnson, recently embarked on an ambitious plan to spray city streets with a pollution paste.
The "dust suppressant" acts as an adhesive to paste particulate matter to the streets instead of re-circulating in the air. Transport of London will spray the suppressant at two traffic-heavy spots over the next six months during the pilot phase. The city hopes the move will curb concentrations of particulate matter by 10 percent to 20 percent, similar to results from other pilot tests in Europe.
London is close to exceeding European Union limits for particulate matter, which complicates the respiratory systems of children and seniors.
The Next Green "It" Girl
The second annual Project Green Search competition is underway with the aim of discovering the next "green it girl." The winner gets an offer of representation from a modeling and talent agency, a green make-over and eco shopping spree. After a public voting round, the 10 finalists with compete in a series of challenges in LA.