World News for Schools:Thu 17 Mar

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Hi there, I'm Ore from the BBC World News for Schools. It's Thursday the 17th of March.

Coming up:

  • Helicopters dump water on damaged Japanese nuclear plant.
  • Chelsea clinch a place in the quarter finals.
  • And old lady elephants fight off predators.

First, military helicopters have been dumping tonnes of water on the damaged nuclear plant in Japan. Without the water, crucial parts of the plant can get too hot and if that happens dangerous radiation could leak out.

People living near the plant have been told to leave, but the Japanese authorities say radiation levels beyond the exclusion zone don't pose a danger to human health. One resident who lives outside of this zone, about 60 kilometres away from the plant, said people were carrying on with their daily business...

CLIP: "Generally people are still here, they're not panicking. It's very normal. We had rubbish collected yesterday and there are salesmen and things driving around, people going about their business, people going to work..."

Despite this, American and French governments are sending special planes to bring their citizens home. Britain is telling UK citizens in Tokyo to consider getting out.

Now to New Zealand, another country still coping after the effects of an earthquake. It's been announced that quake-struck Christchurch won't be able to host the seven Rugby World Cup matches due to be held there in September. Officials say too much damage has been done to safely hold the events...

CLIP: "There's been too much structural damage to the stadium and in addition to that the playing surface is going to need complete replacement. Whilst all that can be repaired, the problem was that no one could understandably give any sort of assurance that it could be prepared by the start of the World Cup. The reality is, the risks were too high."

At least one of the matches will now be held in Auckland, but it's not been decided where the others will be.

Prince William has been visiting Christchurch as well to see for himself the aftermath of last month's earthquake.

Next, we don't usually think of grandmothers as being really tough - but in the elephant world it seems older females play a vital role in fighting off predators. New research has found that when a group of elephants hear the roars of male lions, the groups with older females in them react most effectively. Here's the noise the scientists played the animals...

CLIP: LION SOUNDS USED BY RESEARCHERS

The researchers watched the groups with the oldest females distinguishing the sound of a male lion from a female, before bunching together to form a defence against what they thought was a predator. It shows the vital role the older females have in the group and the importance of conserving and protecting them.

And today's question is all about elephants. We want to know how long a female elephant carries their baby before giving birth? Yesterday, we asked you where the Olympics began? And the answer is ....ancient Greece!

Finally, to the Champions League. Chelsea have earned themselves a place in the quarter finals of the competition. A nil-nil draw against Copenhagen was enough to take them through to the last eight.

That's all from the World News for Schools team. We're back tomorrow.




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