AutoNation CEO Tesla Delivery Hell Issue Could Be Avoided With Dealerships

Last week, Tesla CEO Elon Musk tweeted that his company had shifted from production hell to delivery logistics hell. While Mike Jackson states that Musk should be free to run his business however he wants, he didn’t resist taking a jab at the electric carmaker and its recent growing pains.“For a boutique-y model, what he’s doing is fine,” Jackson said of Musk in an interview on Bloomberg Radio. “As soon as he wants to do volume, it’s gonna be an issue. Well, here we are, we’re now at the issue. It is hell.”For Elon Musk, the main problem with traditional dealerships is commitment and cost. After all, most of these dealerships have spent decades selling ICE (Internal Combustion Engine) vehicles. Nobody knows how committed they would be in selling fully electric vehicles. Furthermore, the cost of selling the car through your website and through company-owned stores is minimal when compared to franchise dealerships. The company, in the end, gets to keep a large chunk of change in its pocket by effectively cutting out the middleman.However, the decision to circumvent the franchise model has put Tesla on a collision course with dealer associations in several states, including Connecticut and Michigan, but also, it put the company in a bit of a bind in markets such as Canada as well. While Tesla managed to win several court cases elsewhere, Tesla and other carmakers face restrictive laws that prevent them from delivering or servicing vehicles.But ultimately, Mike Jackson may be right. These are still low production numbers (though 7,000 deliveries in 7 days is surely impressive) compared to legacy carmakers. If Tesla is to survive the upcoming onslaught from the likes of Audi, Mercedes-Benz, BMW or VW, it will need to address the rising concern regarding delivery capabilities.But, in the end, we’re sure that Musk is on the right path to solving this conundrum as well. Meanwhile, with the growing number of Tesla vehicles being delivered, it seems some future owners (Model 3, especially) will have to stay put, hold tight and wait a bit longer, which is likely not a concern, seeing as how dealing with dealerships can be among the most frustrating experiences.Source: Auto News See Loads Of Tesla Model 3 Vehicles Ready To Roll Out For Delivery Bay Area Bonanza: Tesla Insider Leaks Model 3 Delivery Extravaganza Tesla Model 3 Delivery Push In Full Ramp Mode This comes right in the middle of Tesla’s shift from production hell to delivery logistics hell.For those of you that have been hiding under the rock for the recent few years, Tesla doesn’t do dealerships. The automaker does Tesla Delivery Centers and Tesla Stores. However, it seems that just that might be hurting the company’s long-term success. Mike Jackson, the CEO of AutoNation, America’s biggest auto dealership group, claims that if Tesla hadn’t insisted on handling its own retailing, the automaker could have avoided the recent delivery struggles the company is facing.More about Tesla deliveries Source: Electric Vehicle News Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on September 21, 2018Categories Electric Vehicle News read more

Geely GE11 Electric Car To Be Sold In Singapore Next Month

first_img Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on March 18, 2019Categories Electric Vehicle News Geely Auto Adds Geely New Energy To Automotive Lineup Geely Unveils GE11 Compact Electric Car: Will Be Sold Globally Following the “Xingyue” coupe SUV, which is named after a main-belt asteroid between Mars and Jupiter, Geely did a new naming creation by using a mathematical term. The new BEV model will go on sale on April 11 in Singapore and may be priced between RMB150,000 and RMB170,000, according to previous reports.From the official photos exposed before, we can see that the “Jihe A” adopts a “closed-off” front face, which features a new logo officially named “quantum silver shield”. The lack of a grille suggests that the GE11 is a pure electric vehicle that has no internal combustion engine under the hood.As to the side profile, smarter aerodynamics is characterized by sharp body lines and “hidden” door handles that helps reduce the air resistance—drag coefficient for the car is 0.2375Cd.The new vehicle measures 4,736mm long, 1,804mm wide and 1,503mm tall with a wheelbase that spans 2,700mm.Featuring a fastback design, the rear end adopts flat taillights that are connected by a chrome trim. Besides, there are two charging ports at the right-front wheel eyebrow and the left-rear wheel eyebrow respectively.With a minimalism design, the interior largely covered by gray materials. The dual-spoke flat bottom accentuates a sense of sports. In addition, many key presses are integrated in the auxiliary instrument panel and the center console that carries a large-sized touch screen. Under the 12.3-inch high-definition LCD is a 1.6-meter ambiance light bar that is available for 7 colors.The new vehicle is able to run at a top speed of 150km/h powered by a 177hp (130kW) electric motor and a lithium-ion power battery pack offered by CATL. It will provide users with two range options—410km and 500km.Source: Gasgoo More Details On The Geely GE11 Global Electric Car Source: Electric Vehicle News Singapore first, with other global markets to follow later.Geely is now set to test international waters with an all-new compact BEV model code-named GE11. Recently, the automaker announced the name of the GE11—“Jihe A”, meaning “Geometry A” in Chinese.More From Geelylast_img read more

The Top Ten Most Listened To FCPA Flash Podcast Episodes

first_imgThe FCPA Flash podcast was launched in February 2016 and quickly become a leading podcast devoted to Foreign Corrupt Practices Act issues. Published twice a month, FCPA Flash provides in an audio format the same fresh, candid, and informed commentary about the FCPA and related topics as readers have come to expect from written posts on FCPA Professor.The strength of FCPA Flash includes its high-quality, sophisticated guests who offer informed and candid assessments about FCPA and related issues.Set forth below are the top ten most listened to FCPA Flash podcast episodes. If you are looking to elevate your FCPA knowledge and haven’t yet listened to these podcasts, you may want to check them out. (All FCPA Flash podcast episodes are available here).Paul PelletierIn this episode, Paul Pellletier (former Principal Deputy Chief of the DOJ’s fraud section) discusses the long time periods often associated with FCPA inquiries, FCPA investigative costs, and how the DOJ can best allocate its resources to fight bribery.Paul CalliIn this episode, Paul Calli (an FCPA practitioner who has successfully defended individuals in FCPA trials) discusses the DOJ’s rather dismal FCPA trial court record and what it says about the DOJ’s modern FCPA enforcement program and how the DOJ measures success.Colby SmithIn this episode, Colby Smith (the co-chair of the Securities Litigation Practice at Debevoise & Plimpton) discusses the prominence of disgorgement in SEC FCPA enforcement actions, the questionable use of disgorgement in FCPA enforcement actions that did not charge or find anti-bribery violations, and other notable issues in SEC FCPA enforcement actions.Jonathon PickworthIn this episode, Jonathan Pickworth (a lawyer in the London office of White & Case) discusses various aspects of the U.K. Bribery Act including the still lack of clarity regarding the so-called “failure to prevent bribery” offense as well as the “adequate procedures” defense.Billy JacobsonIn this episode, Billy Jacobson (Orrick and a former Assistant Chief in the DOJ’s FCPA Unit) discusses the DOJ’s FCPA “pilot program” announced in April 2016, his policy suggestions for more effective FCPA enforcement, an FCPA compliance defense and what the FCPA might look like if it was passed today (instead of 1977), and whether a business organization should put the DOJ to its burden of proof.Homer MoyerIn this episode Homer Moyer (Miller & Chevalier) discusses whether the FCPA has been “successful,” the pros and cons of recent FCPA enforcement trends, various aspects of the DOJ’s FCPA “pilot” program, the typical length of FCPA scrutiny, and the costs of investigating potential FCPA violations.Matt EllisIn this episode Matt Ellis (Miller & Chevalier and founder and editor of the FCPAmericas Blog) discusses anti-corruption developments in Brazil; common barriers and distortions in Latin America that often serve as the root cause of bribery; and other anti-corruption developments in Latin America.Anthony MirendaIn this episode, Anthony Mirenda (Foley Hoag) discusses international arbitration – a seldom explored corner of the general FCPA space. In addition to best practices in dealing with foreign third parties, Mirenda specifically discusses how a business organization, acting consistent with best practices in dealing with foreign third parties, can nevertheless expose itself to arbitration claims by the third party and thus find itself between a rock and a hard place.Thomas Gorman In this episode, Thomas Gorman (Dorsey & Whitney and a former SEC enforcement attorney who also runs the SEC Actions blog) talks about the FCPA’s books and records and internal controls provisions, expansive SEC theories of liability thereunder, and whether the time has come for an issuer to put the SEC to its burden of proof in an FCPA enforcement action.David OgdenIn this episode, David Ogden (WilmerHale and a former DOJ Deputy Attorney General) elaborates on a speech (see herefor the prior post) in which he criticized the DOJ’s “leverage based” enforcement approach. Specifically, Ogden discusses a wide range of negative consequences which flow from the DOJ’s enforcement approach. FCPA Institute – Boston (Oct. 3-4) A unique two-day learning experience ideal for a diverse group of professionals seeking to elevate their FCPA knowledge and practical skills through active learning. Learn more, spend less. CLE credit is available. Learn More & Registerlast_img read more

Hormone lab tests not necessary for most teens with gynecomastia

first_img Source:https://wolterskluwer.com/ Jun 30 2018Routine assessment by an endocrinologist and laboratory tests to measure hormone levels aren’t necessary in most adolescent boys with gynecomastia (male breast enlargement), concludes a study in the July issue of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery®, the official medical journal of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS).The cause of adolescent gynecomastia can usually be identified without endocrine testing, according to the study by Jugpal S. Arneja, MD, MBA, and colleagues of University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada. They propose an “evidence-based rationale for evaluation and workup” for the distressing problem of breast enlargement in adolescent males – including referral for male breast reduction surgery if the problem persists beyond age 16.Lab Tests Contribute Little to Gynecomastia Diagnosis and Treatment in Teens The researchers analyzed 197 adolescents with gynecomastia seen at British Columbia Children’s Hospital from 1990 through 2015. Although adolescent gynecomastia is a common issue that usually resolves with time, it has been standard practice to send these teens for evaluation by an endocrinologist: a specialist in diseases of the glands and hormones.Median age was 11.5 years when the patients developed gynecomastia and 14.2 years at their first endocrinology visit. About 70 percent of patients had psychological distress due to their breast enlargement. The study focused on the “utility and diagnostic yield” of routine endocrinology assessment and hormone laboratory testing.Most patients had known risk factors for adolescent gynecomastia – especially obesity/overweight, present in about 50 percent of patients. Another 15 percent had a family history suggesting an increased risk of gynecomastia, such as the father having breast enlargement as an adolescent.In only eight percent of patients, some “secondary” cause of gynecomastia was diagnosed. Most of these involved drugs linked to male breast enlargement, including marijuana, the antidepressant drug fluoxetine, or anti-seizure drugs used to treat epilepsy. Some patients had medical causes of breast enlargement – most commonly (three patients) the inherited chromosomal disorder Klinefelter syndrome.Related StoriesLong term opioid medications impacts production of important hormonesCombination of radiotherapy and anti-hormone treatment can prevent recurrence of hormone-driven breast cancerHigher levels of sex hormones in older men related to lower biological ageMost patients underwent laboratory testing to measure levels of hormones, such as testosterone and estradiol (a form of estrogen). Importantly, these tests had abnormal results in just three patients: a rate of 1.7 percent. Dr. Arneja and colleagues write, “Endocrinological investigations did not yield new clinical information in 99.4 percent of cases.”Despite their low diagnostic value, these evaluations carried considerable costs. Based on ASPS data on breast reduction surgery for adolescent gynecomastia, a rough estimate of these costs was nearly $5 million for in 2016 alone. The authors note that unnecessary endocrinology referrals may carry an additional opportunity cost in Canada, where patients may face long waiting lists for specialist visits.Overall, 51 percent of patients received no medical treatment, other than “watchful waiting” or diet and exercise to lose weight. In this group, gynecomastia resolved over time (median age 14.6 years). Five percent of patients were treated with medications. The remaining patients, about 44 percent, underwent plastic surgery to treat their gynecomastia. Median age at surgery was 16.5 years.Since breast enlargement often resolves with time, “reassurance and monitoring is the mainstay of early management,” Dr. Arneja and coauthors write. They suggest that surgery be considered if gynecomastia has persisted for two years or beyond the age of 16, or for patients who are severely distressed.Dr. Arneja and colleagues discuss the implications for evaluation and management of adolescents with gynecomastia. They highlight the importance of obtaining a thorough medical history – especially since most cases of secondary gynecomastia are medication-related. They conclude, “We do not suggest routine endocrinology workup, as it adds little value.”last_img read more

Phase 3 study of tanezumab in patients with osteoarthritis pain meets all

first_imgJul 19 2018Pfizer Inc. and Eli Lilly and Company today announced that a 16-week Phase 3 study in patients with osteoarthritis (OA) pain evaluating subcutaneous administration of tanezumab, an investigational humanized monoclonal antibody, met all three co-primary endpoints. The study demonstrated that patients who received two doses of tanezumab separated by eight weeks experienced a statistically significant improvement in pain, physical function and the patients’ overall assessment of their OA, compared to those receiving placebo. Tanezumab is part of an investigational class of pain medications known as nerve growth factor (NGF) inhibitors and in addition to OA pain, is being evaluated for chronic low back pain (CLBP) and cancer pain (due to bone metastases).Related StoriesBioventus and MTF Biologics collaborate to develop placental tissue product for knee osteoarthritisCannabis users could be more tolerant to anesthesia agentsUsing gene therapy strategies to rejuvenate aging cells and treat osteoarthritis”There is a substantial need for innovative new treatment options for osteoarthritis, as many patients are unable to find relief with currently available medicines and continue to suffer,” said Ken Verburg, tanezumab development team leader, Pfizer Global Product Development. “We are encouraged by these results, which speak to the potential of tanezumab as a non-opioid treatment option for pain reduction and improvement in physical function in people living with osteoarthritis pain.”Preliminary safety data showed that tanezumab was generally well tolerated, with approximately 1% of patients discontinuing treatment due to adverse events. Rapidly progressive osteoarthritis was observed in tanezumab-treated patients at a frequency of less than 1.5%, and was not observed in the placebo arm. There were no events of osteonecrosis observed in the trial. No new safety signals were identified.”Worldwide, millions are living with osteoarthritis, a progressive disease that can significantly impact people’s everyday lives,” said Christi Shaw, senior vice president, Eli Lilly and Company and president, Lilly Bio-Medicines. “We look forward to continuing to advance tanezumab in our ongoing global Phase 3 development program, which includes six studies in approximately 7,000 patients with osteoarthritis, chronic low back pain and cancer pain.”In June 2017, Pfizer and Lilly announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) granted Fast Track designation for tanezumab for the treatment of OA pain and CLBP. Tanezumab is the first NGF inhibitor to receive Fast Track designation, a process designed to facilitate the development and expedite the review of new therapies that treat serious conditions and fill unmet medical needs. Source:https://www.pfizer.com/news/press-release/press-release-detail/pfizer_and_lilly_announce_positive_top_line_results_from_phase_3_trial_of_tanezumab_for_the_treatment_of_osteoarthritis_oa_painlast_img read more

SBPH enhances patient safety with Xenex LightStrike room disinfection robot

first_imgReviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Aug 28 2018St. Bernard Parish Hospital is enhancing patient safety and reducing the risk of healthcare-associated infections with a Xenex LightStrike™ room disinfection robot. SBPH is the only healthcare facility in Louisiana east of New Orleans with this germ-fighting technology, which has been proven to quickly destroy the most common as well as the most dangerous pathogens that can cause infections.LightStrike Germ-Zapping Robots™ help hospitals reduce their infection rates by killing microscopic germs and superbugs through use of pulsed xenon, an environmentally friendly noble gas, to create intense ultraviolet (UV) light. The UV light quickly destroys harmful germs in less than five minutes. The device is being used in addition to existing routine cleaning procedures as an extra level of protection against the microorganisms that can cause infections.Related StoriesRaw meat can act as reservoir for bacteria associated with hospital infectionsBordeaux University Hospital uses 3D printing to improve kidney tumor removal surgeryStudy looks at impact of hospital readmissions penalties on targeted surgical conditionsSBPH is inviting patients, employees and community members to submit name ideas for the robot via email at SBPHrobotcontest@ochsner.org. Visitors to the hospital can also submit names at the information desk. The naming contest ends on September 20; the winning name will be announced on September 21.”The safety of our patients is top priority. Parish residents deserve, and will be provided, an experience that is worry-free in a safe environment at St. Bernard Parish Hospital,” said Kim Keene, CEO of St. Bernard Parish Hospital. “The Xenex robot is just one example of many best practices happening at the facility right now to bring a higher level of quality to this community.”Hospitals using Xenex devices have published outcome studies in peer-reviewed journals showing 50-100 percent decreases in Clostridium difficile (C.diff), MRSA and Surgical Site Infection rates after the robots were used for room disinfection. In addition to the new LightStrike robot at St. Bernard Parish Hospital, Ochsner currently has 18 robots at its Jefferson Highway campus, where it saw a 49 percent decrease in infection rates in the first four months after adding LightStrike room disinfection to its cleaning protocol.”We are always looking for opportunities to enhance the quality of care we provide patients,” said Sandra Kemmerly, MD, System Medical Director of Hospital Quality, Ochsner Health System. “Adding LightStrike Robots to our room disinfection process improves our ability to destroy dangerous pathogens and reduce the risk of infections. It creates a safer environment, for our patients, our employees, and the communities we serve.”St. Bernard Parish Hospital is owned by the Hospital Service District of the Parish of St. Bernard, State of Louisiana, a political subdivision of the State, and managed by Ochsner Health System. For more information about St. Bernard Hospital or to schedule an appointment, visit www.ochsner.org/sbph or call 866.624.7636.​ Source:https://www.xenex.com/last_img read more

Ultralaser treatment reduces pain in patients with fibromyalgia

first_img Source:http://agencia.fapesp.br/28572 Reviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Aug 30 2018A new device that combines low-intensity laser light and therapeutic ultrasound considerably reduces the pain experienced by patients with fibromyalgia.A scientific study has shown that application to the palms instead of to tender points on different parts of the body has better analgesic and anti-inflammatory effects. As a result of pain reduction, patients also sleep better and are able to perform daily tasks with less discomfort. Their overall quality of life also improves.In an article published in the Journal of Novel Physiotherapies, researchers at the Optics and Photonics Research Center (CEPOF), one of the Research, Innovation and Dissemination Centers (RIDCs) supported by the São Paulo Research Foundation – FAPESP, describe the concomitant application of low-intensity laser light and therapeutic ultrasound for three minutes to the palms of the hands of patients diagnosed with fibromyalgia. The treatment consisted of ten twice-weekly sessions.”The study describes two innovations: the device and the treatment protocol. By emitting laser light and ultrasound simultaneously, we succeeded in normalizing the patient’s pain threshold. Application to the palms differs from the focus on tender points found practically everywhere today in fibromyalgia care,” said Antônio Eduardo de Aquino Junior, a researcher at the University of São Paulo’s São Carlos Physics Institute (IFSC-USP) in Brazil and a coauthor of the article.The research was also funded by the National Council for Scientific and Technological Development (CNPq) and the Brazilian Innovation Agency (FINEP).The principal investigator for the project was Vanderlei Salvador Bagnato, Full Professor and Director of IFSC-USP.In the study, 48 women aged 40-65 and diagnosed with fibromyalgia were divided into six groups of eight at the Clinical Research Unit run by IFSC-USP in partnership with the Santa Casa de Misericórdia hospital in São Carlos, São Paulo State.Three groups received applications of laser or ultrasound separately or combined in the region of the trapezius muscle. The other three groups received applications only to the palms.The results showed that treatment involving application to the palms was more effective regardless of the technique, but the laser-ultrasound combination significantly improved the patients’ condition. Assessments were performed using the Fibromyalgia Impact Questionnaire (FIQ) and the Visual Analogue Scale for Pain (VASP).A comparison of the groups showed a difference of 57.72% in functionality improvement and of 63.31% in pain reduction for the ultrasound-laser group in the case of application to the trapezius. Ultrasound-laser application to the palms produced a 73.37% difference in pain reduction compared with application to the trapezius.Related StoriesVitamin D supplementation may not reduce the risk of heart diseaseBritish boys to receive HPV jabsCreating a physical and genetic map of Cannabis sativaTender pointsThe idea of testing the effects of the new device in application to the palms of the hands arose from a review of the scientific literature.”Previous studies showed that patients with fibromyalgia had larger numbers of neuroreceptors near blood vessels in the hands. Some patients even had red points in this region. We therefore changed focus to test the direct action of the technique on these sensory cells in the hands rather than just so-called pain trigger points, such as the trapezius, which is typically very painful in fibromyalgia patients,” said Juliana da Silva Amaral Bruno, a physical therapist and first author of the study.The study showed that application to the hands affects all pain points in the patient’s body. The same FAPESP-funded center group had previously published an article in the Journal of Novel Physiotherapies describing a case study in applying the device to pain points. Although the results of this first study were satisfactory, global pain reduction proved impossible.”Combined application of ultrasound and laser to pain points such as the trapezius was highly effective but did not succeed in reaching the other main innervations affected by the disorder,” Bruno said. “Application to the palms of the hands had a global result, restoring the patient’s quality of life and eliminating her pain.”According to the study, the optimization of peripheral and brain blood flow via the activation of sensitive areas of the hands during the sessions normalized the patient’s pain threshold.”It’s important to bear in mind that this isn’t a cure but a form of treatment that doesn’t require the use of drugs,” Aquino said.Fibromyalgia is a chronic disease that involves widespread nonarticular high-intensity pain lasting longer than three months. It affects 3% to 10% of the adult population, with a higher prevalence in women. Although patients experience pain in practically the entire body, they do not present with injuries, inflammation or tissue degeneration. Two other mysteries are associated with fibromyalgia: its cause is unknown, and no cure has been found so far.The standard treatment comprises physical exercise, anti-inflammatory and analgesic medication, and psychotherapy, as patients typically complain of extreme fatigue, difficulty concentrating, dizziness, depression and anxiety.According to Aquino, the new device that combines ultrasound and laser therapy should come to market in early 2019. It is currently being tested for other pathologies by researchers at the FAPESP RIDC.”We’re testing it for osteoarthritis, knees, hands and feet, and the results have been interesting. Other projects are being designed for other diseases,” Aquino said.​last_img read more

One hundred and one monarch genomes reveal surprising history of this longdistant

first_imgEach fall, when the first migrating monarch butterflies fluttered past his 11th-floor window in Washington, D.C., Science’s recently retired earth science writer, Dick Kerr, would call us other writers and editors in to watch these harbingers of the coming cold wing their way southward. He’ll appreciate this advance. By sequencing 101 monarch genomes, biologists have rewritten the evolutionary history of the species, discovering what makes the monarch’s wings orange and its muscles well suited for the long flight to boot.”It is a wonderfully complete application of genomics to elucidating a well-known puzzle of natural history,” says Lawrence Gilbert, an evolutionary ecologist at the University of Texas, Austin. “It explains the pattern of migratory and sedentary populations on the globe and probably refines hypotheses on many aspects of monarch biology.”The fall journey takes the monarch, Danaus plexippus, thousands of kilometers south to the mountains of Mexico for the winter. Come spring, the butterflies begin their trek northward, following the blooming of the caterpillar’s host plant, milkweed. Adults stop and reproduce when they encounter the plant; then the next generation heads north as the season progresses to find more milkweed, so it can take several generations for the insects to make it back to Washington, D.C., and beyond to Canada. Females lay eggs on milkweed and their caterpillars feed on this plant, acquiring compounds that make the butterflies toxic to potential predators, as they warn with the striking orange and black pattern on their wings. Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe Many of the monarch’s close relatives call the tropics home and don’t migrate, so evolutionary biologists had proposed that the North American migrants descended from nonmigratory South or Central American ancestors, much as temperate songbirds originated in the tropics, spreading northward to find food but forced to return south each winter because of the cold weather. Not so, says Marcus Kronforst, an evolutionary biologist at the University of Chicago in Illinois. “The data said a totally different thing.”Kronforst and his colleagues had previously studied another butterfly, Heliconius, and found the key gene involved in determining the color patterns of the various species in this group. So when the monarch genome was first sequenced 2 years ago, he wondered whether there might be a single gene largely responsible for migration behavior in the monarchs.Joining forces with monarch experts, Kronforst obtained DNA from 92 monarchs and nine other closely related butterflies. The samples came from different parts of North America, from places in South and Central America where the local monarchs stayed put all year round, and from elsewhere around the world. Shuai Zhan, now at the Shanghai Institutes for Biological Sciences in China, sequenced all of these genomes. He and his colleagues grouped the genomes by how similar they were to build a family tree. That tree revealed that, contrary to expectations, all the monarchs arose from a population in the southern United States or northern Mexico. The species expanded in three waves, one south into South and Central America, one east across the Atlantic, and a third west across the Pacific. Butterflies in those waves settled down and ceased migrating. Kronforst, Zhan, and their colleagues matched up the DNA from migratory and nonmigratory populations. About 500 genes were different, many of them subtly so. But one muscle gene, called collagen IV alpha-1, stood out sharply. Many other creatures share the gene. Fruit flies with mutations in it have atrophied muscles, and in people, similar mutations lead to frequent muscle cramps. The researchers expected that to make their long trips North American monarchs would need a lot more collagen than their South American counterparts and that the gene would therefore be more active. Instead, the gene was less active in the migrants, they report online today in Nature. Somehow, less collagen in the migrants’ flight muscles made them more efficient.”It’s the first genetic change that’s been shown to be associated with migration,” says Richard Ffrench-Constant, an entomologist at the University of Exeter in the United Kingdom, who was not involved with the work. But the study is “just a first step,” he adds. These are the sorts of genes “that equip [the monarchs] to migrate, but not the genes that make them fly.” He hopes that next the researchers will find genes involved in turning on the migration behavior.Kronforst and Zahn’s team also sequenced genomes from Hawaiian monarchs, which come in white and orange forms. From breeding experiments, other researchers learned that a single gene was responsible for the color loss. Zahn and Kronforst expected that this gene would be involved in pigment-generating pathways. But instead, their analysis shows it was a gene that codes for myosin, a protein essential for muscle contraction. The butterfly myosin gene resembles a myosin gene that is mutated in a mouse strain that has light instead of dark fur. In the mouse, this myosin helps transport pigments into the hair, so Kronforst thinks the white morph’s myosin may fail to transport orange pigment into the wing scales.Ffrench-Constant says the data are compelling. But he wonders how well the new evolutionary scenario will hold up once more monarch relatives—many of them tropical and nonmigratory—are sequenced. The addition of those genomes to the monarch extended family tree may lead to another revision of this butterfly’s history. Nevertheless, the genetic analysis should reinforce interest in conserving migrating monarchs, whose numbers have dwindled in recent years. “Based on the paper’s findings,” Gilbert says, “sedentary populations cannot easily restore migrating monarchs once the latter are lost.”center_img Email Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*)last_img read more

Icebergs off Miami

first_imgIf the cruise industry had existed between 10,000 and 20,000 years ago, ships headed in and out of Miami would have had to dodge icebergs. As the last ice age waned and climate warmed, immense lakes of glacial meltwater that accumulated behind natural ice dams occasionally burst forth from the mouth of Canada’s Hudson Bay and the Gulf of St. Lawrence. When those iceberg-laden outburst floods—some of them carrying more than 1 million cubic meters of water per second and lasting several months—reached the open sea, they took a right turn and flowed south along the coast as far as the Florida Keys, a new study suggests. The torrent-driven icebergs, some of them hundreds of meters thick, plowed troughs in the sea floor all along the continental shelf (like those found in 170- to 380-meter-deep waters off the coast of South Carolina; one such berm-edged trough extends from lower left to top center of the image). Sea levels have risen more than 100 meters since most of these troughs were formed, which has helped preserve them from surface waves that could roil and smooth seafloor sediments. Whereas the troughs off South Carolina measure up to 100 meters across and 20 meters deep, those off the central Florida Keys (now found in waters between 215 and 280 meters deep) typically are no more than 50 meters wide and 5 meters deep—as expected, because the bergs would have melted to smaller size as they drifted south, the researchers report online today in Nature Geoscience. Some of the iceberg scours off Miami Beach, probably created by icebergs the size of those setting sail from Greenland today, lie less than 12 kilometers offshore.last_img read more

Video How spiderwebs stay tense

first_imgWhen compressed, most fibers sag if they are soft and buckle if they are hard. But the silken webs of some spiders do neither: They remain taut no matter how far they are stretched or compressed. Now, scientists say they have figured out just how these webs maintain their tension. Using a microscope and a nanoscale positioning system, a team of scientists artificially stretched and compressed a single-capture thread from a golden orb weaving spider. They found that the capture thread—used to build the sticky spirals of the web—behaves like an elastic solid when stretched. But when compressed, droplets of liquid silk that dot the fiber cause the solid silk to spool like a liquid (see video above). This keeps the silk taut even when it is compressed up to 95%, the researchers report today in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Using this new insight, the team decided to build their own “liquid wire”: a hybrid material made from droplets of silicone oil on a polyurethane thread. The synthetic fiber displays the same properties as spiders’ capture silk, switching from liquidlike to solidlike behavior as tension across the thread changes. Any sufficiently thin fiber surrounded by a droplet should show these properties, the researchers say, which could one day be applied to robotics, artificial muscles, and even flexible, stretchable electronics.(Video Credit: Science/AAAS)last_img read more

North Koreas millennium eruption flooded the skies with sulfur but left little

first_img Email Clive Oppenheimer, a volcanologist at the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom and a co-author on the new paper, examines exposed ash at Mount Paektu from the millennium eruption. To estimate that missing sulfur, Iacovino and her co-authors had to model the crystallization of the magma as it cooled in its reservoir. Certain elements form crystals relatively easily, whereas others, like uranium, resist crystallization. After estimating sulfur’s crystallization rate, they could then compare how much was preserved in the glassy blobs with the amount of uranium. The difference indicated how much sulfur gas had already percolated out—fully 42 megatons, as the team reports today in Science Advances.Iacovino and her colleagues offer a few reasons why this huge amount of sulfur didn’t seem to cool the planet—or leave much of a mark in Greenland’s ice cores. Paektu is a high-latitude volcano, which means emissions from eruptions tend to stay within the same hemisphere and, thus, have a smaller global cooling effect. The sulfate particles from high-latitude volcanoes also tend to fall out of the stratosphere more quickly than those from tropical eruptions like Tambora. Finally, there is evidence that Paektu blew its top in winter, which would have damped its climatic effect because there would have been less sun for its sulfate particles to reflect.These explanations aren’t convincing, says Alan Robock, a climate scientist at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, New Jersey, who specializes in stratospheric sulfates. “With the large sulfur emissions they claim, there would certainly be deposition in Greenland even if the eruption was in the winter,” he says. A simpler explanation might be that the sulfur slowly burped up before the eruption, leaving the emissions from the main blast closer to earlier projections, says Ralf Gertisser, a volcanologist at Keele University in the United Kingdom.But if the study’s higher estimate holds, it should prompt concern about how the evidence from ice cores is used to measure past eruptions, Iacovino says. Rather than automatically assuming that a core gauges an eruption’s emissions, it might be better to take it as a measure of its climatic effect. “People modeling the ancient atmosphere of Earth should think about that.”The study, which resulted from a 2013 visit organized by AAAS (the publisher of Science), was no typical collaboration. With her North Korean colleagues, Iacovino collected pumice dated to before and after the 946 eruption—a time that saw the rise of the Goryeo dynasty, which united the Korean peninsula and gave the modern country its name. Iacovino knew little about Asia, let alone Paektu, at the time. But volcanology brought the groups together. “When we were together in the field, we were talking about the science,” she says. “We forgot about everything else.”But when it came to drafting the paper, things were not so simple. If Iacovino had a question for Kim Ju-Song, her co-author at North Korea’s Earthquake Administration, she couldn’t just pick up the phone. Instead she’d send an email to James Hammond, a volcanologist at the University of London who coordinated the project. Hammond would email the Chinese nongovernmental organization that connected the scientists to North Korea, and this nongovernmental organization would in turn contact Ju-Song. But most of their work still got done in person, which included one trip to London for the North Korean researchers.Although this first round of work is nearing its end, Iacovino is convinced it’s the start of a sustained collaboration with North Korea’s volcanologists. After all, Paektu’s not done either. Although it hasn’t erupted since 1903, it started grumbling again this past decade. Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe Iacovino and her co-authors returned to Paektu’s pumice for their new estimates. Scientists have done this elsewhere by measuring the gas content of globs of magma that are preserved, like time capsules, in crystals right before an eruption and comparing it with the gas content of rocks hardened out of magma following the blast. This technique allows scientists to estimate the amount of liquefied gasses—including sulfur—spewed into the air. But it also misses any sulfur that had already shifted into a gas phase in Paektu’s magmatic stew before the eruption. And volcanoes rich in silica like Paektu, which tend to have chunky, viscous magmas, seem to hold a lot of gas. “Imagine a ball of peanut butter, and trying to inject gas into it,” Iacovino says. “It’s going to be pretty easy for the peanut butter to hold on to it.” Richard Stone Straddling the border between China and North Korea, the massive Mount Paektu volcano has long been an enigma. In 946 C.E., Paektu (called Changbai in China) erupted with a force matched by few volcanoes over the past 2000 years. Yet curiously, Paektu’s “millennium eruption” is not thought to have had the same devastating climatic effects as Indonesia’s Mount Tambora, whose 1815 explosion poured 28 megatons of sulfur into the atmosphere, cooling the planet by 1°C and causing the famed “year without a summer.” Now, a new analysis of rocks from Mount Paektu suggests its eruption actually put out 45 megatons of sulfur—far more than Tambora and more than 20 times past estimates based on ice cores in Greenland.”The amount of potential sulfur is huge,” says Kayla Iacovino, a volcanologist at Arizona State University in Tempe who led the study, a rare collaboration between North Korean, U.K., and U.S. scientists. The results, she adds, make Paektu’s apparently weak climactic effect all the more mysterious.Researchers typically estimate the climate effects of ancient eruptions using a mix of rock, ice, and tree-ring records. Sulfur, which turns into sun-reflecting, planet-cooling sulfate particles once it hits the stratosphere, eventually settles around the globe, where it is often preserved in ice cores. But cores in Greenland corresponding to 946 C.E. don’t hold much sulfur, and there is little evidence in the cores and tree rings for a dip in global temperatures at the time. That has led many volcanologists to believe that, although Paektu packed a local punch, it left little in the way of a global legacy. Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Countrylast_img read more

Trump taps Georgia health director to lead CDC

first_img Trump taps Georgia health director to lead CDC Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country TEDx Atlanta/Flickr (CC BY 2.0) Fitzgerald—a one-time adviser to then-Representative Newt Gingrich, herself a two-time Republican candidate for Congress, and formerly a major in the U.S. Air Force—has been in her current position since 2011. She will succeed Tom Frieden, who stepped down this past January after leading CDC for 8 years.Fitzgerald is the second key public health appointment made by Trump in recent days. On 29 June, Trump nominated Jerome M. Adams, an anesthesiologist who is Indiana’s health commissioner, to be the U.S. surgeon general.”Very proactive”Fitzgerald gets good reviews from the health and research community. “I’ve been impressed with her energy. She’s been very proactive on access to family planning in Georgia and promoting early childhood development,” Frieden says.“I’m optimistic that she will be an effective CDC director,” said James Curran, who once led CDC’s HIV/AIDS efforts and is now the dean of the Rollins School of Public Health at Emory University in Atlanta. Curran has worked with Fitzgerald for several years in his role as a member of the board of the Georgia Department of Public Health. “She has great respect for science,” he added.As state public health commissioner, Fitzgerald made access to long-acting contraceptives easier for women on Medicaid, by obtaining a waiver that improved incentives for physicians to provide such contraceptives immediately after delivery of a baby. Fitzgerald was also a key architect of a model Ebola screening program at the Atlanta airport, which laid the groundwork for later Zika screening in the state. Concerned by a high rate of early elective deliveries in Georgia, Fitzgerald had state data analyzed; they showed a significant difference in third-grade school test performance between children who had been delivered at 37 weeks of pregnancy compared with those delivered at 39 weeks. When hospitals and obstetricians got the information, Georgia’s rate of elective deliveries before 39 weeks plummeted from 65% to 3% over about 2 years.Fitzgerald is a “solid choice” to head CDC, Donna J. Petersen, chair of the Association of Schools and Programs of Public Health in Washington, D.C., and dean of the College of Public Health at the University of South Florida in Tampa, said in a statement.  Tony Mazzaschi, ‎senior director for policy and research at the group, says that Fitzgerald’s commitment seemed total when she attended a recent Atlanta roundtable on population health organized by his group. “She not only came, she was 100% there,” he says.Importantly for her upcoming role, Fitzgerald is president-elect of the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials, a position reflecting a vote of confidence from a key CDC constituency—state public health workers.Fitzgerald has gotten embroiled in the politics of abortion. At the direction of Georgia Governor Nathan Deal (R), Fitzgerald’s department ran an investigation of Planned Parenthood Southeast and four other Georgia abortion providers, after abortion opponents released covertly filmed videos in the summer of 2015 that showed senior Planned Parenthood officials frankly discussing their provision of fetal remains for medical research, a practice legal under U.S. law.  Fitzgerald found no evidence of wrongdoing. However, the Atlanta Journal Constitution reported that the Department of Public Health wrote to Planned Parenthood Southeast the day after Deal called for the inquiry, “saying the state was canceling a program that provided Planned Parenthood with free test kits for sexually transmitted diseases.” Planned Parenthood and the department soon reached a compromise under which the state continued to provide the test kits but Planned Parenthood paid for them.Fitzgerald is a cook, a gardener, and a runner who begins her days with “sun salutation” yoga and green tea and loves to vacation in the south of France. “I practice what we preach in public health—I eat healthy foods and I make sure to include physical activity in my schedule every day,” she said in a recent interview that is packed with personal detail.Frieden, however, emphasized his concern for the agency no matter how competent or devoted the new director. In late May, The Washington Post reported that the agency has nearly 700 staff vacancies. Trump’s 2018 budget proposal would cut the agency by $1.2 billion, or 17%.“She can succeed by listening to and supporting the staff at CDC,” Frieden says. “Supporting means making sure that CDC has the budget it needs to protect Americans.”Surgeon general pickIf confirmed by the U.S. Senate, Adams, the surgeon general nominee, will replace Vivek Murthy, whom Trump ousted in April. Adams has been Indiana State Health Commissioner since October 2014. He was hired by then-Governor Mike Pence, now the vice president. Early in 2015, Adams confronted an HIV epidemic in rural Scott County in southeastern Indiana, fomented by needle-sharing among prescription opioid users; 158 cases of the disease were diagnosed by May 2015 when Adams urged citizens to practice safe sex and, “If you’re injecting drugs, don’t share needles.”It was, however, Pence’s reluctant decision, 2 months after the outbreak began, to implement a needle-exchange program that put the brakes on the epidemic.  In this New York Times depiction of Pence’s conversion to the idea, Adams is quoted defending Pence’s weeks of inaction. “The governor wanted to make sure if we went this route it was absolutely necessary,” Adams said. “I believe he was praying on it up until the final decision.”Late last month, Adams touted the now-2-year-old needle exchange program in a Department of Health press release. “Syringe exchanges aren’t pretty,” he wrote, “but the opioid epidemic is far uglier.”As an undergraduate in the summer of 1996, Adams was a Howard Hughes research scholar at the University of Colorado in Boulder lab of Thomas Cech. There, Adams studied the structure of the Tetrahymena group I intron that had won Cech the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1989 for his discovery of its catalytic properties. “I’m thrilled that Jerome’s research experience … in my lab helped propel his career,” said Cech, now a distinguished professor in the department of chemistry and biochemistry at the university.Adams later earned a master’s degree in public health from the University of California, Berkeley, and an M.D. from Indiana University. He completed a residency in anesthesia in 2006 and has been a practicing anesthesiologist since then. President Donald Trump has tapped two state health commissioners to fill key posts in his administration. Today, Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price announced the selection of Brenda Fitzgerald, an obstetrician-gynecologist who is commissioner of the Georgia Department of Public Health , to direct the $12.1 billion Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta.“Having known Dr. Fitzgerald for many years, I know that she has a deep appreciation and understanding of medicine, public health, policy and leadership—all qualities that will prove vital as she leads the CDC in its work to protect America’s health 24/7,” Price said in a statement. Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwecenter_img Brenda Fitzgerald at a TEDx event in Atlanta in 2014. By Meredith WadmanJul. 7, 2017 , 12:00 PM Email Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*)last_img read more

Natural Disasters – The Ring of Fire and the next Big One

first_imgJust about everyone has heard of the San Andreas Fault running through California. Scientists have been studying the fault line for years, trying to predict the next major earthquake. In 1970, another major fault line running for 700 miles, just 40 to 80 miles off the coast of the Pacific Northwest in the U.S. and Canada was discovered with the potential to cause an earthquake much more powerful than the San Andreas could, along with a tsunami that could travel as far as Japan and Southeast Asia.Aerial photo of the San Andreas Fault in the Carrizo Plain. Photo by Ikluft CC BY-SA 4.0The Cascadia Subduction Zone covers the area between Northern Vancouver Island and Cape Mendocino in California.It is part of the Ring of Fire, a seismic belt that runs in a horseshoe-shape from the south of Australia up through the Philippines to the easternmost part of Russia, then directly east to Alaska’s Aleutian Islands, and down the west coast of Canada, the United States, Mexico, Central America, South America and west back toward Australia.According to Encyclopaedia Britannica, most of the world’s strongest earthquakes and about seventy-five percent of the volcanoes on Earth are located in the Ring of Fire.Area of the Cascadia subduction zone, including the Cascade Volcanic Arc (red triangles) Ring of Fire.The Cascadia Subduction Zone is where the Pacific tectonic plate meets the Juan de Fuca tectonic plate which is moving westward and being pushed under the Pacific plate, and can eventually cause an earthquake which in turn can cause a tsunami. The larger the earthquake, the larger the tsunami.In January 1700, that scenario actually took place when an earthquake believed to have reached from 8.7 to 9.2 on the Richter scale ripped through the entire Cascadia Zone. The resulting tsunami created ten-foot waves in Japan that, according to ScienceDaily lasted eighteen hours.Cascadia earthquake sources.Written and oral history refer to a major earthquake on the west coast of the US and a tsunami in Japan, but no one knows exactly when the event occurred.  During the 1980s and 1990s, scientists tested the “ghost forests” along the coast of Washington and Oregon.These are stumps of western red cedar trees and other plant life that were destroyed all at one time as told by carbon dating and dendrochronology, the study of tree rings. All evidence shows the plant life stopped growing about the end of 1699.  Soil samples from the ocean floor also attest to a major ecological event at this time.Neskowin Ghost Forest in August 2017. Photo by Chrahp CC BY-SA 4.0Scientists like Chris Goldfinger, a paleoseismologist at Oregon State University, and his colleagues predict that the chance of a major earthquake along the Cascadia Zone within the next fifty years is one in three.According to an article in The New Yorker written by Pulitzer Prize winning author Kathryn Schulz in 2015, Goldfinger predicts that the next earthquake will begin with compressional waves, fast-moving, high-frequency waves that are audible only to dogs and some other animals.Grjotagja fault, Iceland.If such a scenario were to take place, the intensity of the quake would cause open chasms in the ground and walls of ocean water to flood in from the sea. Coastal towns and cities from southern Canada to southern California would be in danger. Many theories already exist that the next “Big One” could actually cut off California from the rest of the country. According to USA Today California is overdue for the next big earthquake. “There is a 99.9% chance that there will be a damaging quake (magnitude greater than or equal to 6.7) somewhere in California in the next 30 years,” said Peggy Hellweg, a seismologist at the University of California, Berkeley.Read another story from us: Sea Serpent – Can the Giant Oarfish Predict Earthquakes?The Ring of Fire covers some of the most populated places on Earth. The Pacific coast of the Americas are frequently rocked by earthquakes, open fissures in the heavily populated Hawaiian Islands are belching out lava, hurricanes plague the Gulf of Mexico, thousands live near Mt. St. Helens and over two million people live in the shadow of Mt. Vesuvius. Humans seem to have a habit of being attracted to dangerous locations.last_img read more

HUSD strives to provide ways for students to excel

first_imgJanuary 2, 2019 HUSD strives to provide ways for students to excel By Linda Kor       As Holbrook Unified School District continues to focus on Helping Unique Students Develop, which is the mission of the district, one specific program that will be implemented is the AVID programSubscribe or log in to read the rest of this content. Bottom Adlast_img

Arrest made in 2016 Winslow homicide case

first_imgMay 28, 2019 Arrest made in 2016 Winslow homicide case         Last week on May 16, U.S. Marshals apprehended Brandi Mattox, 39, of Winslow in Mesa in connection with a homicide investigation from 2016.         The Winslow Police Department has been investigating the homicide ofSubscribe or log in to read the rest of this content. Bottom Adlast_img

Democrats strike deal with an obstruction witness but a court fight looms

first_img Related News United States, Robert Mueller, Mueller report, Donald Trump,Donald Trump inquiry, Trump inquiry Trump campaign, Trump-Russia campaign ties, Russian interference in presidential election, 2016 U.S. presidential election, United States House Of Representatives, White House, World news, Indian Express news.  Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.), left, chairman of the Judiciary Committee, during a hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington. (The New York Times)Written by Nicholas Fandos The House Judiciary Committee reached a deal with a key source of information for Robert Mueller’s obstruction of justice investigation that will allow her to delay public testimony that had been scheduled for Monday but require her to answer written questions as the committee waits.Democrats who control the committee said they were willing to take those steps because the witness, Annie Donaldson, is in her third trimester of pregnancy and lives in Alabama. They said she would still be required to testify in person in the coming months before the committee, which is investigating whether President Donald Trump obstructed justice when he tried to thwart the special counsel’s examination of his campaign’s ties to Russia.The White House is expected to intervene to try to block Donaldson, a former White House lawyer, from answering any questions about her government service. The White House will most likely cite a Justice Department opinion that close aides to the president have “absolute immunity” from congressional subpoenas. Planned Parenthood, seeking more political tack, removes its president Leana Wen Post Comment(s) After heated exchanges, US House condemns tweets by Donald Trump as racist Republicans offer little criticism of Trump’s comments on Democratic Congresswomen By New York Times |Washington | Updated: June 25, 2019 9:47:03 am Advertising The House, in turn, is preparing to file a lawsuit as early as next week to try to get the federal courts to strike down the administration’s immunity theory, which has been advanced by presidents of both parties but has never been fully tested in court. Even though the suit will probably take aim at Donaldson’s former boss, one-time White House counsel Donald F. McGahn II, a ruling in the Democrats’ favour could effectively force Donaldson and other witnesses who have defied the Judiciary Committee to take the witness stand.Donaldson, as chief of staff to McGahn, witnessed or was privy to some of the most explosive moments detailed by Mueller’s investigators, including the firing of James Comey as FBI director and attempts by Trump to gain control of the investigation. Donaldson kept detailed notes of those episodes and others, which are referenced frequently in Mueller’s 448-page report.A lawyer for Donaldson, Sandra Moser, said she was pleased with the accommodation.Under the terms of her accord with the Judiciary Committee, Donaldson agreed to appear in person to testify sometime after Nov. 1 and will provide written answers to lawmakers’ questions in the meantime. The committee will most likely deliver those questions this week, a committee aide said. The White House, which declined to comment Monday, could intervene thereafter. Advertisinglast_img read more

Project Second Innings In Dahod new chapter for retired teachers — and

first_img Karnataka trust vote today: Speaker’s call on resignations, says SC, but gives rebel MLAs a shield Karnataka trust vote today: Speaker’s call on resignations, says SC, but gives rebel MLAs a shield Best Of Express After Masood Azhar blacklisting, more isolation for Pakistan Cabinet asks finance panel to consider securing funds for defence education, education poverty, indias poor education, dahod, dahod niti aayog, niti aayog education projects Retired teacher Natha Barjod at the primary school in Kalia Valunda village, Dahod. (Express Photo by Bhupendra Rana)UNTIL LAST year, Surya Bhabhor had the odds stacked against him. His parents were away, working as migrant workers, and he was with his grandmother in Gujarat’s Dahod, struggling to cope at school, finding it “difficult to read and write English”. Today, the 11-year-old breezes through the alphabet, and is happy to write his name in English and read out from a Class 5 textbook at the primary school in Vadela village. Advertising Written by Aishwarya Mohanty | Vadodara | Published: July 15, 2019 12:43:42 am After Masood Azhar blacklisting, more isolation for Pakistan center_img Cabinet asks finance panel to consider securing funds for defence Advertising District Development Officer, R K Patel, says migration is “one of the key” factors that has led to lower learning outcomes in Dahod, a tribal district. Labour records show that over 30,000 people migrate every year on an average in search of work, mostly from February to July. Of them, about 15,000 return during the monsoon but leave again by August-end.“We realised that once students go home, they don’t get help because their parents are mostly out for work. With the experience and expertise of retired teachers, they get extra attention in school itself,” he says.Vinod Rao, Secretary, Education Department, Gujarat, says the “major challenge” in the district is attendance. “Against the state performance of 57% students with attendance above 80%, Dahod has only 17%. All these initiatives are directed towards reviving attendance,” he says. Until last year, all that 59-year-old retired teacher Lakshman Chauhan wanted to do was spend time at his “small farm” near his home in Vadela. Today, he is back in front of the blackboard at the school, happy to be conducting remedial sessions for students in need.What has brought Bhabhor and Chauhan together is Project Second Innings, launched by the Dahod administration under the NITI Aayog’s Transformation of Aspirational Districts programme. Dahod is among 117 districts identified by NITI Aayog, with education as one of the core areas of focus.The project was launched in 2018 to help improve learning outcomes in primary and upper primary classes, specifically in reading, writing and Maths. And Chauhan is among 517 retired teachers who have voluntarily signed up, so far.“I still believe in the traditional system — read, write, practise and learn. If they can learn the language well, they can read and understand other subjects, too. I continuously conduct dictations and sessions where students read out from their textbooks,” says Chauhan. Top News Then, there’s 78-year-old Natha Barjod, the “Master ji” at the primary school in Kalia Valunda village. “I retired as a school principal in 1999, and was approached by the district last year to volunteer as a tutor in my village. I get about Rs 20,000 in pension, and both my sons are working, so I don’t have anything else to worry about. I help the students here with Gujarati and Maths,” he says.The results are showing. At last year’s Gunotsav, an annual evaluation in government primary schools, 58,639 students from classes 6 to 8 in Dahod were graded below 5 on a scale of 1-10 in reading, 66,133 in writing and 67,666 in Maths. Of these students, 27,598 improved their grades this year to above 6 in reading, 28,664 in writing and 32,827 in Maths.Dahod has also climbed one rung from the bottom among 33 districts in the Secondary School Certificate (SSC ) results — from last in pass percentage (37.35%) in 2018 to one step higher (49.18%) this year.According to District Collector, Vijay Kharadi, 285 more retired teachers are being drafted, with a target of 1,000 by the year-end. “We are also looking at retired government officials based in their villages who can devote time for the project,” he says.Nodal Education Officer (Aspirational District), Janak Patel, says they pick volunteers from an updated database. “As soon as teachers retire, we approach them to teach in their own villages. If they agree, we organise classes for an hour before or after normal school hours,” says Patel. Post Comment(s)last_img read more

US Senate Republicans hold rare climate hearing and more might be coming

first_imgSenators Lisa Murkowski (R–AK, right) and Joe Manchin (D–WV, left), the senior members of the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, confer during a hearing yesterday on climate change. Email U.S. Senate Republicans hold rare climate hearing, and more might be coming By Mark K. Mathews, E&E NewsMar. 6, 2019 , 12:15 PM Originally published by E&E NewsIt’s been some time since the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee has held a hearing on climate change, so naturally its top two lawmakers felt compelled to get a couple of things out of the way during yesterday’s roughly two-hour meeting.Global warming is “directly impacting our way of life,” said Senator Lisa Murkowski, the Alaska Republican who leads the panel. Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia, the top-ranking Democrat, added, “There’s no doubt that humans have made a tremendous impact on what we’re dealing with.”It’s a baseline of understanding that, by now, seems obvious to most climate scientists.But it was a milestone moment for the Senate panel.Manchin said yesterday was the first time since 2012 the committee had held a hearing on climate change. (In response, a Republican aide pushed back with the argument that climate change is a frequent topic of discussion on the panel.)Irrespective of the timeline, Manchin and Murkowski both represent states that lean heavily on the energy industry, and their simple acknowledgement of the climate crisis yesterday was enough to draw small applause from some corners.“It is significant that we even had the hearing—particularly when you have two leaders on the committee, both of whom come from fossil fuel states,” Sen. Angus King (I-ME) said in an interview afterward. “There were some differences on the level of urgency, but I think the underlying premise is that this is something we have to deal with.”Melinda Pierce, legislative director for the Sierra Club in Washington, D.C., had a similar takeaway. The “hearing was notable because it actually occurred,” she said. “It is a good day when a Republican-led committee actually listens to experts about real climate impacts, clean energy and innovation.”But Pierce added this caveat: “This wasn’t revolutionary in terms of setting an agenda for bold action, but it was a start.”Indeed, the committee mostly skimmed over potential solutions—touching on ideas such as microgrids, carbon capture technology and better energy efficiency for buildings. As the main thrust of the hearing was about climate change and the electricity sector, Murkowski made sure to note also that a reduction in carbon emissions is only part of her committee’s responsibility.“As more renewables come online … our committee will focus on maintaining grid reliability and resiliency,” she said. “We’ll prioritize keeping energy affordable, [and] we’ll be working to advance cleaner energy technologies that can help reduce greenhouse gas emissions.”Manchin wanted to make clear, too, that he was skeptical of efforts to dramatically shrink the United States’ carbon footprint in the near future. “Solutions must be grounded in reality, which requires the recognition that fossil fuels aren’t going anywhere anytime soon,” he said.At another point in the hearing, he noted the vast reserves of natural gas beneath his home state. “We have an ocean of gas under us in West Virginia—an ocean of gas,” he said.Neither of these comments is likely to assuage the concerns of climate hawks, but they do suggest there could be a window for Congress to make small changes to energy policy in the short term.“Responsible Republicans and Democrats are considering realistic, durable solutions to the issue,” said Alex Flint, executive director of the conservative Alliance for Market Solutions in Washington, D.C., which backs the idea of using a carbon tax to fight global warming. “They represent the evolving state of climate change politics.”It’s unlikely, however, that any recommendation from the Senate committee will approach the scale of something like the Green New Deal, which supporters argue is the only way to head off the worst effects of climate change.Murkowski said, “We do have a considerable role to play in developing reasonable policies that can draw bipartisan support that I think will be a pragmatic contribution to the overall discussion.”She specifically cited topics such as new research and energy efficiency. “I think you’ll likely see these as subjects of further discussion,” she added.Reprinted from Climatewire with permission from E&E News. Copyright 2019. E&E provides essential news for energy and environment professionals at www.eenews.net. 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Animal underpasses on Maharashtra highway a lifesaver tigers turning out to be

first_img International Tiger Day: We need new age Tiger champions The study found animals displaying “peculiar behavioural patterns” that could help in devising mitigation measures required to be undertaken in other similar projects. For instance, between March and May, the study undertaken with the help of 74 trap cameras showed that T1 used Animal Under Pass (AUP) 9 at least twice. In another case, the study showed, a sloth bear took two months to decide that it would use the underpass.The study found that while some animals passed through the underpasses, some used them for playing or resting. Most animals used the underpasses during night, it showed. The study showed 27 events involving 11 individual tigers using AUPs 3, 4, 7, 8 and 9 — they used AUP 8 the most, frequenting it on 20 occasions.“These are the first-ever wildlife mitigation measures in the country and the world’s biggest. Our study has found that 17 species have started using them… Tigers have been preferring the AUPs, which is very reassuring,” says Habib.Other animals found using the AUPs were: leopard (1), chital (237), gaur (20), hare (30), jungle cat (50), mongoose (16), bluebull (15), palm civet (15), porcupine (1), sambhar (6), small Indian civet (2), sloth bear (1), wild dog (five) and wild pig (41). Langurs (6,255) and rhesus macaques (2,315) were found to have used the AUPs. London Zoo: First date for 2 rare tigers ends in death In their long legal battle demanding adequate mitigation measures, in the Nagpur bench of the Bombay High Court, activists accused the WII of succumbing to pressure from the NHAI and allowing smaller underpasses than originally suggested.After the recent video of T1, the High Court directed the litigants and their lawyers to visit the underpasses along with officials from the Forest Department and NHAI to assess the situation. The team visited the spot Saturday.On T1 using the underpass and the road above, Habib says: “That’s a question of behaviour. Maybe, he found crossing the road on that occasion possible due to no traffic in sight. Every animal has its own calculation and response to a situation.”Habib says the WII team has “suggested raising fencing on the road in stretches between AUPs” to deter animals from crossing. “Over the next few years, traffic will be much higher, increasing animal mortality on the road,” he says.Udayan Patil, a member of Srushti Paryavaran Mandal, which first opposed the four-laning in court and pressed for mitigation measures, says: “There are some issues, like stacking of construction material and accumulation of water inside the AUPs. The guiding walls, too, have to be of appropriate height. As for the validity of the WII’s claims on the utility of the structures, we need to have other independent agencies cross-check with their own data.” More Explained Advertising Written by Vivek Deshpande | Nagpur | Updated: July 16, 2019 11:27:22 am Best Of Express Karnataka trust vote today: Speaker’s call on resignations, says SC, but gives rebel MLAs a shield After Masood Azhar blacklisting, more isolation for Pakistan Related News Taking stock of monsoon rain Madhya Pradesh loses 17 tigers in 2017: NTCA animal underpasses, animal underpasses maharashtra, tigers, tigers in india, maharshtra, pench reserve, pench wildlife reserve, wildlife, wildlife conservation, india news, indian express T1 spotted using an underpass at night. (Image Courtesy: WII)LAST WEEK, travellers on the newly four-laned NH-44 in Maharashtra recorded a startling video. It showed T1, a tiger from the Pench reserve, crossing the highway in daylight. Pench officials said T1, a male of about 11 years, had already been hit once by a vehicle in February. Pench Tiger Reserve (PTR) Field Director Ravikiran Govekar says that “overall, the mitigation measures have started bearing fruit”. But he is quick to add that it’s too early to arrive at a conclusion. “The Wildlife Conservation Trust (WCT) has also been asked to do their own assessment. We will have to do a study for about a year to be able to fully understand the pluses and minuses of the mitigation measures,” he says. Post Comment(s) Advertising Two days after that video was shot, two people died on the highway after their car hit a truck while swerving to avoid a wild boar.Last week, travellers on the newly four-laned NH-44 in Maharashtra recorded a startling video. It showed T1, a tiger from the Pench reserve, crossing the highway in daylight.Read full story here | https://t.co/YqD5u3E7qJ pic.twitter.com/hwOgSZCvwB— The Indian Express (@IndianExpress) July 16, 2019Wildlife activists have cited these incidents to underscore the inadequacy of the nine underpasses built by the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI), on the directions of the Bombay High Court, for animals to avoid the highway.However, a report by Wildlife Institute of India (WWI) scientist Bilal Habib and his team shows that over March, April and May, 17 different species of animals started using these underpasses along the 16-km patch of forest on the Maharashtra side of the highway — including T1.Tigers have been among the most frequent users of at least one of these underpasses, says the report that is part of a study titled ‘Ecological impact assessment of existing and proposed road infrastructure in important wildlife corridors in India’. Advertising However, 10,493 people and 264 livestock also used the AUPs during the same period. “We need to restrict non-wildlife movement to exploit the full potential of these structures,” says Habib.According to Habib, two specific developments have been encouraging:-11 individual tigers have started using these underpasses. “This could well be the entire tiger population residing in the vicinity of NH 44 that needs to cross the road,” says Habib.-Around 10 am last Sunday, AUP 8 witnessed a first-of-its-kind event: a pack of 5-6 wild dogs killing a chital (spotted deer). “This is very exciting since it means the dogs have started treating the AUPs as part of their habitat and are feeling at home there,” says Habib.The underpasses, which are essentially the space beneath elevated portions of the highway, are 50-750m wide — AUPs 7 and 8 are the largest at 750m. They were constructed about a year ago, at sites most frequently used as crossing points by animals in a survey conducted by Habib in 2015, and were ready for use early this year. Cabinet asks finance panel to consider securing funds for defence last_img read more