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2017-08-01 NEWS Plus Special English
   2017-07-28 12:59:16    CRIENGLISH.com      Web Editor: Du Lijun

This is Special English. I'm Ryan Price in Beijing. Here is the news.
China has agreed to expand bilateral trade in services with the United States during the first China-U.S. Comprehensive Economic Dialogue.
A Chinese delegate said that despite a huge deficit in services trade with the United States, China nevertheless believed that trade in services between China and the United States is mutually beneficial, and is willing to engage in mutually-beneficial and win-win cooperation in trade in services.
Given the differences between China and the United States in the size and structure of their service industries, it is possible to exploit their own comparative advantages and complement each other. The Chinese official said expanding bilateral trade in services can also promote balanced trading relations between the two sides.
The two countries discussed trade in services in the high-level economic dialogue, and the United States expected China to further open up its services market.
The official said China agreed to further open up, deepen its cooperation with the United States, and forge new areas of growth in bilateral commercial cooperation.
The State Council, China's Cabinet, has approved a pilot plan to open up Beijing's service industry by removing some restrictions on the sector. Local governments will ease restrictions on foreign investments, streamline regulations and encourage innovation.
This is Special English.
Two decades after the Asian financial crisis which tipped nations into economic and political turmoil, China now finds itself a major financial power capable of better global contribution.
Latest progress in the financial sector includes global recognition of Chinese shares. Recently, equity index provider MSCI finally included a number of Shanghai and Shenzhen listed stocks in one of its most traded indices, after three years of stalling.
China's Xinhua News Agency says the path has been neither smooth nor straight.
When the crisis quickly enveloped most of the Asian economies including Hong Kong, China's GDP and export growth slowed down markedly. However, China made great efforts to protect its currency from devaluating, which contributed to stabilizing the regional and, in fact, the global economy.
Lessons have been learned. The crisis could be traced to the premature opening up of capital accounts before domestic financial systems and regulations were ready.
China has been steadfast on pursuing sound economic and financial policies as well as effective regulation and supervision over the past two decades, aiming to build a more open and competent financial system and fulfill its WTO commitments.
From the banking sector reshuffle years ago to the current tight financial regulation, reforms never stop despite emerging problems especially in recent years.
You're listening to Special English. I'm Ryan Price in Beijing.
The world's largest "dark market" on the Internet, Alpha Bay, has been shut down.
The U.S. Justice Department said in a statement that the so-called dark web marketplace AlphaBay has been used to sell deadly illegal drugs such as fentanyl and heroin, stolen and fraudulent identification documents and access devices, counterfeit goods, malware and other computer hacking tools, firearms, and toxic chemicals since its creation in 2014.
In order to hide the locations of its servers and the identities of its administrators, moderators, and users, the website operated as a hidden service on the Tor network and utilized crypto currencies including Bitcoin.
Attorney General Jeff Sessions said at a press conference announcing the takedown that it is likely one of the most important criminal investigations of this entire year.
Sessions said the forces of law and justice face a new challenge from the criminals and transnational criminal organizations who think they can commit their crimes with impunity by "going dark".
Alpha Bay serviced over 200,000 users and 40,000 vendors. Around the time of takedown, there were over 250,000 listings for illegal drugs and toxic chemicals on the website, and over 100,000 listings for stolen and fraudulent identification documents, counterfeit goods, as well as computer hacking tools and firearms.
This is Special English.
Brendt Christensen, the accused kidnapper of a Chinese scholar, has pleaded not guilty to charges against him during his arraignment at a federal court in Midwest U.S. state of Illinois.
The arraignment in the federal courthouse in Urbana of Illinois lasted not more than five minutes, and Christensen broke his silence, speaking some time during the proceeding.
As expected, Christensen pleaded not guilty in his third appearance in less than three weeks in U.S. Magistrate Judge Eric Long's crowded courtroom.
In a statement, Christensen's attorney said his client has demanded a jury trial and he plans to persist in his plea of not guilty.
He said the case could go on a year or more.
A U.S. lawyer who has been offering legal support to the victim's family on a voluntary basis said outside the court that the result is not unexpected and the case entered into another stage.
Christensen's next pretrial hearing was set for August 28, and his trial date is set for Sept. 12.
FBI officials also say they don't believe that the kidnapped scholar is alive at this point. Law enforcement agencies are still searching for her location.
You're listening to Special English. I'm Ryan Price in Beijing.
Stanford University sociology Professor Doug McAdam argues that while there is significant support from Americans for action on climate change, the issue is still not seen as an immediate threat by many.
His argument in a recent article appearing in the Annual Review of Political Science is based on a review of 40 years of research and theory on social movements in an attempt to determine why a sustained grassroots movement on climate change has not developed in the United States.
Numerous public opinion polls show that Americans believe climate change is a major problem that needs to be dealt with. However, there is a relative lack of grassroots climate change activism in the country. U.S. President Donald Trump decided in early June to withdraw from the Paris Agreement on climate change.
McAdam blames a host of factors that help to account for the lack of grassroots activism, notably the relentless denial of the reality of climate change by anti-climate change forces; the increasing gridlock in U.S. Congress, making bipartisan action on any issue difficult; and the lack of "ownership" of the issue by any significant segment of the American public.
This is Special English.
People who drink coffee appear to live longer. That's according to two new studies published in the U.S. journal of Internal Medicine, providing further confirmation on the health benefits of coffee consumption.
The first study, conducted in 10 European countries and the largest ever of its kind, found that compared to non-coffee drinkers, those who consume the most coffee have a significantly lower risk for death.
The second study found that higher coffee consumption was associated with lower risk for death in whites and also in non-white populations and that the mortality benefit was the same for caffeinated and decaffeinated coffee.
The finding of the second study, done by researchers at the University of Southern California, is important because different races have different lifestyles and disease risks.
It is increasingly evident that moderate coffee intake up to three to five cups per day or caffeine intake up to 400 milligram per day is not associated with adverse health effects in adults and can be incorporated into a healthy diet.
You're listening to Special English. I'm Ryan Price in Beijing. You can access the program by logging on to crienglish.com. You can also find us on our Apple Podcast. Now the news continues.
Most animals depend on a beating heart to pump blood and oxygen, but sea spiders do this mostly with their unusual guts.
A new study found that unlike humans with their centrally located guts that are all confined to a single body cavity, the guts of sea spiders branch multiple times and sections of the gut tube go down to the end of every leg.
Lead author Arthur Woods of the University of Montana said in a statement that in effect, sea spiders guts are "space-filling" and ubiquitous in their bodies in the same way that the human circulatory systems are space-filling and ubiquitous.
The study, published in the U.S. journal Current Biology, found that sea spiders, which take in oxygen directly through their cuticles, use gut peristalsis to move fluids.
Woods and colleagues made that discovery after an Antarctic mission to explore a phenomenon known as "polar gigantism".
Scientists had long observed that polar species, including giant sea spiders, have larger bodies than their more temperate or tropical relatives.
That trend raises a lot of intriguing questions about how the polar species manage basic life processes, including how to get enough oxygen into their bodies.
This is Special English.
With recording devices affixed to humpback whales, Stanford University researchers have observed the whales flapping their fore flippers like penguins or sea lions, completely unlike anything seen before in whales.
The unexpected novel movement, caught on video footage of the whales feeding in groups and detailed in Current Biology, helps the researchers understand more about the abilities and anatomy of these mysterious animals and could also inform bio-inspired design.
A lead author of the paper said that whales power their swimming by using their muscular tails. However, in this case, scientists have documented the first example of a whale flapping its flippers to move forward, using a motion similar to a bird flapping its wings.
The fore flippers of humpbacks are bumpy and slender compared to the much shorter, smoother front flippers of other whales. They are so distinctive that the scientific name for humpback whales means "big-winged New Englander". As their fore flippers were thought mainly to be involved in steering, it makes sense that the unusual flipper shape could explain the humpback's skillful maneuvering.
Video tagging technology is relatively new, so researchers have only recently had the opportunity to test and expand on this hypothesis.
This is Special English.
Huge pulses of volcanic activity are likely to have played a key role in triggering the Triassic mass extinction some 200 million years ago, which set the scene for the rise and age of the dinosaurs.
A new study suggested that one of Earth's most severe known extinction events, the Triassic extinction resulted in the widespread loss of land and sea species, including large crocodile-like reptiles and several marine invertebrates, as well as huge changes in land vegetation.
While it remains a mystery why the dinosaurs survived this event, they went on to fill the vacancies left by the now extinct wildlife species, alongside early mammals and amphibians.
This mass extinction is suggested to have coincided with and been caused by one of the largest known episodes of volcanic activity in Earth's history, which might have occurred in pulses and covered a huge area, across four continents, representing the Central Atlantic Magmatic Province.
In the new study, researchers from the Oxford University worked in collaboration with the Universities of Exeter and Southampton to examine sediments deposited at the same time as the Province from four continents for fluctuations in mercury, which is emitted as a gas from volcanoes.
The mercury gas was spread globally through the atmosphere, before being deposited in sediments. Any sediments left during a large volcanic event would therefore be expected to have unusually high mercury content.
This is the end of this edition of Special English. To freshen up your memory, I'm going to read one of the news items again at normal speed. Please listen carefully.
This is the end of today's program. I'm Ryan Price in Beijing, and I hope you can join us every day, to learn English and learn about the world.


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