News In Brief

New evidence shows pollution has "contributed substantially" to global warming and the earth is likely to become hotter than previously predicted, a UN panel of scientists declared. They concluded that the average global temperature could increase by 2.7 degrees to as much as 11 degrees F. by the end of this century if trends related to heat-trapping gases continue. Five years ago, the panel put the projected increases between 1.8 and 6.3 degrees F. The conclusions by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the most authoritative scientific voice on the issue to date, are expected to widely influence climate debate over the next decade.

Despite well-publicized occurrences of school violence in recent years, the number of such incidents is falling, a report by the Education and Justice Departments found. Schoolchildren, in fact, were twice as likely to be victims of serious crime away from school. Between 1993 and 1997, the proportion of high-schoolers bringing in weapons dropped 25 percent, and the percentage of students who reported they were victims of crime at school dropped from 10 percent in 1995 to 8 percent in 1999, the study said.

Goodyear dismissed as misleading a published report that said tread-separation problems, similar to those surrounding Bridgestone/Firestone, have contributed to eight deaths. The company said it plans no recall. The Los Angeles Times reported that Goodyear became aware of design problems with its light-truck tires five years ago and made a design change to strengthen them. But millions of the earlier models remain on the road, including the popular Goodyear Wrangler AT and HT, the newspaper said.

Scientists were to release small amounts of a safe gas on downtown Salt Lake City as part of a ninth and final experiment aimed at preparing for the possibility of a terrorist attack. The researchers, who are funded by the Energy Department and the Pentagon's Defense Threat Reduction Agency have been trying to understand the risk of chemical or biological attacks on urban areas. Salt Lake City, site of the 2002 Olympic Winter Games, was chosen because its mountain-rimmed basin is conducive to weather patterns that trap pollutants near the ground.

A corporate-turnaround artist hired nine months ago to overhaul the US Olympic Committee announced his resignation, saying he couldn't carry out his plans. Norm Blake cut staff, proposed slashing money for sports in which Americans rarely win medals, and tied USOC funding for national sports governing bodies to how many medals are won. He took over the USOC after a bribery scandal enveloped the Salt Lake City Games, and he was expected to make the not-for-profit organization more like a professional sports league.

Some Floridians were still complaining about the demeanor of crews cutting down their trees to battle citrus canker, despite the workers having undergone sensitivity training earlier this week. The bacterial infection is a major concern for central Florida's $8.5 billion citrus industry, and the state is waging a five-year battle to remove affected trees and those nearby. Some residents said the workers were too intrusive and uncooperative in explaining aspects of the situation.

(c) Copyright 2000. The Christian Science Publishing Society

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