Saturday, August 24, 2019

Protesters in Hong Kong destroying smart lamp posts

And more China-related news:

"Inside China's attempt to boost crop yields with electric fields"
Over the past few years, greenhouses like this have sprouted up across China, part of a government-backed project to boost the yield of crops by bathing them in the invisible electric fields that radiate from power cables. From cucumbers to radishes, the results are, apparently, incredible. “The overall quality is excellent,” says Liu Binjiang, the lead scientist on the project. “We’re really entering a golden age for this technology.”

Using electricity to boost plant growth – not by powering heaters or sprinkler systems, but simply by exposing plants to an electric field – is an old idea. It is also controversial. Electroculture was tested in Europe many decades ago and found wanting, with the results too inconsistent to be any use. The mechanism was also mysterious: no one knew how or why electric fields might boost growth. So what exactly is going on in China’s new greenhouses? Can you really improve agriculture through the power of electric fields – and if so, how?
As the Chinese state zeroes in on individuals suspected of supporting ongoing protests against Beijing’s influence in Hong Kong, it has singled out Cathay Pacific


“We are panicked,” said one flight attendant who has worked for the airline for seven years.

Airline staff describe a climate of fear and mistrust in their ranks, as Chinese officials target flight crews with thorough searches of their luggage and personal devices — including deleted files and secure messaging apps — for any signs of protest sympathies. Some have had their phones’ content downloaded by Chinese authorities. Others have seen their private information published in public messaging groups, their anti-
government inclinations laid bare.

A train station in the heart of Hong Kong could soon become a symbol of Hong Kongers' worst fears about China, after the detention of a UK consulate employee.

Simon Cheng, a Hong Kong citizen working for the British consulate, has not been heard from since August 8, when he told his girlfriend he had boarded a high-speed train, traveling from the Chinese city of Shenzhen to Hong Kong. "Pray for me," he texted her as he approached Chinese immigration, according to screenshots seen by CNN.
Beijing confirmed Wednesday that Cheng had been detained by police under a sweeping security law, but did not specify why -- the law cited for his detention applies to numerous broad offenses.


Fan won't be the only person in Hong Kong who fear that Cheng's case confirms their suspicions about the shared station. The decision to effectively cede part of Hong Kong to China in order to allow Chinese officials to operate in West Kowloon station was roundly criticized by pro-democracy lawmakers and legal groups in the city before it came into effect late last year.
The government defended the arrangement as necessary for the smooth operation of the $10.7 billion station, which linked Hong Kong to China's vast high-speed rail network.