$10bn pledged in new commitments to protect the world’s oceans

first_imgRepresentatives of governments, the private sector, civil society groups and philanthropic organizations have pledged billions of dollars to protect vast swaths of the world’s oceans.The impacts of illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing and climate change on the world’s oceans were a focus of recently concluded Our Ocean Conference in Bali, Indonesia.Cooperation between governments is needed to prevent the world’s oceans from experiencing devastating damage from an onslaught of factors led by climate change. NUSA DUA, Indonesia — Global participants in the fifth Our Ocean Conference have pledged the highest amount of funding yet for new initiatives and commitments on the protection of a combined expanse of ocean eight times the size of Alaska.The event, hosted by the Indonesian government on the island of Bali, generated 287 pledges in bilateral and multilateral agreements between governments, the private sector, civil society organizations and philanthropic foundations. The pledges were valued at more than $10 billion to protect some 14 million square kilometers (5.4 million square miles) of the world’s oceans, according to Luhut Pandjaitan, Indonesia’s coordinating minister for maritime affairs.To date, the Our Ocean Conference has raked in commitments totaling $28 billion and covering 26.4 million square kilometers (10.2 million square miles) of ocean.“These numbers are beyond our expectations,” Luhut said in his closing remarks on Oct. 30. “We are thankful for your collective contributions and making our ocean healthier and (more) sustainable.”Heads of government and representatives from the private sector, civil society organizations and philanthropic foundations took part in the fifth edition of the Our Ocean Conference in Nusa Dua, Bali, Indonesia. Image courtesy of the Our Ocean Conference.The impacts of illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing and climate change on the world’s oceans were the key focuses during the two-day conference. Data from the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) showed that the value of fish captured illegally was about 26 million tons, or up to $23 billion annually. The world’s maritime resources are valued at around $24 trillion.“Illegal fishing globally still decimates fisheries at an unsustainable pace,” said former U.S. secretary of state John Kerry in his speech on Oct. 29.“Illegal fishing continues on an unmitigated, unsustainable pace and almost one-third of the world’s fisheries are still overexploited,” he said. He added that the remainder of fisheries “are either at peak or nearly at peak with more and more people in the middle class, more and more people with money, more and more people demanding fresh fish on their table in their restaurants in their country.”Kerry said a billion people worldwide depended on fish as their primary source of protein. If the world fails to do more to protect the oceans, there would be “an unrecognizable fishing industry which will pit country against country and promote even more money-driven decision-making than we face today,” he said.“Protecting the ocean doesn’t hurt jobs, it is jobs,” he added.Indonesian President Joko Widodo called for a “mental revolution,” a concept recycled from his 2014 election campaign, to address the challenges facing the world’s seas and to manage them in a sustainable manner.“The ocean’s health is very concerning,” he said in his speech on Oct. 29. “We are aware of plastic waste, water pollution, destruction of coral reefs, warming of sea temperature, the rise of sea levels, and so forth.”He also warned of increases in maritime piracy, human trafficking, drug smuggling and slavery.“The OOC must be the driving engine behind a global mental revolution to nurture our oceans,” Widodo said.Indonesian President Joko Widodo has called for a global “mental revolution” to protect and conserve the world’s oceans. Image courtesy of Our Ocean Conference.Both Kerry and Widodo also called on other world leaders to step up the fight against climate change to protect the oceans. Kerry said cooperation between governments to address climate change impacts would require the same kind of efforts it took to prevent nuclear clashes during the Cold War.“In the 1950s and ’60s, what brought me into public life was the nuclear freeze and arms control, the issues of peace,” Kerry said. “But now, folks, we need to face up to the fact that we’ve got to treat the issue of the oceans, and the protection of the oceans, and the protection of the planet, with the same urgency that we treated arms control and nuclear weapons.“We need a non-proliferation treaty for pollution in the oceans, we need a global agreement where everybody is agreeing on how we’re going to enforce in the high seas, how we contribute. We had to do it in the United Nations, and we do through separate entities, but we need to do that,” Kerry added.Former U.S. secretary of state John Kerry says the fight against climate change requires the same kind of commitment that it took to prevent nuclear clashes during the Cold War. Image courtesy of Our Ocean Conference.He said rising temperatures had changed the basic chemistry of the oceans faster than in the last 50 million years, threatening marine life. Kerry said the damage had reached such extreme levels that there could soon be more plastic than fish in the oceans, short of governments addressing the pressing issues.“You can’t protect the ocean without solving climate change. And you can’t solve climate change without protecting the ocean,” Kerry said.Citing last month’s report by the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which warned of a mass die-off of coral reefs as soon as 2040, Kerry said he remained optimistic that countries would act to solve the problems.“Twelve years is the target for the governments to become responsible. For leaders to lead,” he said.He urged better collaboration to achieve goals in marine conservation and protection.“It’s a shared responsibility that affects the $500 billion global economy and the livelihoods of 12 percent of the world’s population,” he said. “It’s about the next generation being able to count on the oceans the same way our generation took it for granted until sometimes pushing it to the brink of breaking.”However, Kerry said there were still more than 400 unresolved maritime boundary disputes that had unfortunately compounded the problem of ungoverned spaces.“This is not the time to rest on laurels, not when all over the globe there’s too much money still chasing too few fish, not when [on] the high seas there’s still too little enforcement,” he said.To improve global cooperation, Widodo also called for the enforcement of international law to resolve territorial disputes between countries.“Overlapping maritime claims that if not resolved through negotiations and based on international law may pose a threat to stability,” he said. “International law must be the guidance in the settlement of maritime claims.”More than 90 percent of world trade by volume, and 40 percent by value, goes through the ocean. Similarly, 61 percent of the world’s crude oil production is distributed through the ocean.“No single country can resolve the challenges that we face alone,” Widodo said. “No single country can optimize the benefits of the oceans for the benefit of the entire world alone. Not even the government can solve everything.”Banner image of Layang Layang Atoll, Spratly Islands, South China Sea. Image by Greg Asner/Divephoto.org. FEEDBACK: Use this form to send a message to the author of this post. If you want to post a public comment, you can do that at the bottom of the page. Article published by Basten Gokkon Climate Activism, Climate Change And Conservation, Conservation, Environment, Environmental Activism, Global Warming, Happy-upbeat Environmental, Marine, Marine Conservation, Marine Crisis, Marine Ecosystems, Marine Protected Areas, Ocean Warming, Oceans, Oceans And Climate Change center_img Popular in the CommunitySponsoredSponsoredOrangutan found tortured and decapitated prompts Indonesia probeEMGIES17 Jan, 2018We will never know the full extent of what this poor Orangutan went through before he died, the same must be done to this evil perpetrator(s) they don’t deserve the air that they breathe this has truly upset me and I wonder for the future for these wonderful creatures. So called ‘Mankind’ has a lot to answer for we are the only ones ruining this world I prefer animals to humans any day of the week.What makes community ecotourism succeed? In Madagascar, location, location, locationScissors1dOther countries should also learn and try to incorporateWhy you should care about the current wave of mass extinctions (commentary)Processor1 DecAfter all, there is no infinite anything in the whole galaxy!Infinite stupidity, right here on earth.The wildlife trade threatens people and animals alike (commentary)Anchor3dUnfortunately I feel The Chinese have no compassion for any living animal. They are a cruel country that as we knowneatbeverything that moves and do not humanily kill these poor animals and insects. They have no health and safety on their markets and they then contract these diseases. Maybe its karma maybe they should look at the way they live and stop using animals for all there so called remedies. DisgustingConservationists welcome China’s wildlife trade banThobolo27 JanChina has consistently been the worlds worst, “ Face of Evil “ in regards our planets flora and fauna survival. In some ways, this is nature trying to fight back. This ban is great, but the rest of the world just cannot allow it to be temporary, because history has demonstrated that once this coronavirus passes, they will in all likelihood, simply revert to been the planets worst Ecco Terrorists. Let’s simply not allow this to happen! How and why they have been able to degrade this planets iconic species, rape the planets rivers, oceans and forests, with apparent impunity, is just mind boggling! Please no more.Probing rural poachers in Africa: Why do they poach?Carrot3dOne day I feel like animals will be more scarce, and I agree with one of my friends, they said that poaching will take over the world, but I also hope notUpset about Amazon fires last year? Focus on deforestation this year (commentary)Bullhorn4dLies and more leisSponsoredSponsoredCoke is again the biggest culprit behind plastic waste in the PhilippinesGrapes7 NovOnce again the article blames companies for the actions of individuals. It is individuals that buy these products, it is individuals that dispose of them improperly. If we want to change it, we have to change, not just create bad guys to blame.Brazilian response to Bolsonaro policies and Amazon fires growsCar4 SepThank you for this excellent report. I feel overwhelmed by the ecocidal intent of the Bolsonaro government in the name of ‘developing’ their ‘God-given’ resources.U.S. allocates first of $30M in grants for forest conservation in SumatraPlanet4dcarrot hella thick ;)Melting Arctic sea ice may be altering winds, weather at equator: studyleftylarry30 JanThe Arctic sea ice seems to be recovering this winter as per the last 10-12 years, good news.Malaysia has the world’s highest deforestation rate, reveals Google forest mapBone27 Sep, 2018Who you’re trying to fool with selective data revelation?You can’t hide the truth if you show historical deforestation for all countries, especially in Europe from 1800s to this day. WorldBank has a good wholesome data on this.Mass tree planting along India’s Cauvery River has scientists worriedSurendra Nekkanti23 JanHi Mongabay. Good effort trying to be objective in this article. I would like to give a constructive feedback which could help in clearing things up.1. It is mentioned that planting trees in village common lands will have negative affects socially and ecologically. There is no need to even have to agree or disagree with it, because, you also mentioned the fact that Cauvery Calling aims to plant trees only in the private lands of the farmers. So, plantation in the common lands doesn’t come into the picture.2.I don’t see that the ecologists are totally against this project, but just they they have some concerns, mainly in terms of what species of trees will be planted. And because there was no direct communication between the ecologists and Isha Foundation, it was not possible for them to address the concerns. As you seem to have spoken with an Isha spokesperson, if you could connect the concerned parties, it would be great, because I see that the ecologists are genuinely interested in making sure things are done the right way.May we all come together and make things happen.Rare Amazon bush dogs caught on camera in BoliviaCarrot1 Feba very good iniciative to be fallowed by the ranchers all overSponsoredlast_img read more

Some local forest areas reopen after fire

first_imgANGELES NATIONAL FOREST – U.S. Forest Service officials are slowly reopening the areas in the Angeles and Los Padres national forests burned in September’s 163,000-acre Day Fire. Some closures remain in force because of ongoing fire control measures, rehabilitation activities and concerns about potential new fires in extremely dry areas of northern Ventura and southern Kern counties, according to Kathy Good of the Los Padres National Forest. In the Angeles National Forest, the east side of Pyramid Lake, including Emigrant Landing, reopened Friday after being closed for more than a month. Several areas of the Angeles remain closed, including Piru Ponds, the Frenchman’s Flat day-use area, along Highway 99 and sections of the west shoreline of Pyramid Lake. (661) 257-5252160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREThe joys and headaches of holiday travel: John PhillipsAreas of the Los Padres that reopened Friday include all lands west of Highway 33; all forest lands west of and including the Gene Marshall-Piedra Blanca National Recreation Trail between the Piedra Blanca Trailhead near Rose Valley and Haddock Camp on Pine Mountain Ridge; the Rose Valley recreation area and roads and campgrounds along Pine Mountain Ridge to Reyes Peak Trailhead. Closures that remain in effect in the Los Padres include Nordhoff Ridge Road; all areas of the Sespe Wilderness except lands west of the Gene Marshall-Piedra Blanca National Recreation Trail and all areas south and east of and including Pine Mountain Road and Reyes Peak Road, as well as Reyes Peak Trail. Hunters will be affected by the continuing closures in the Los Padres. To accommodate this weekend’s opening of deer season, the California Department of Fish and Game will honor tags for zone D13 in zones D11 and D15. Details are available at www.inciweb.org or by calling the Ojai Ranger office at (805) 646-4348 or the Santa Clara-Mojave Rivers Ranger office at (661) 296-9710. carol.rock@dailynews.com last_img read more

Why Google Plus Could Be a Minus for Chrome

first_imgAsk any power user, blogger, or journalist which PC web browser is the fastest or the most secure, and the answer will almost always be, “Google Chrome.” That’s because Google has done a masterful job positioning Chrome as the high-performance, secure browser.But a bumper crop of poorly performing, quickly coded Google Plus extensions for Chrome threatens to damage the reputation Google engineers and marketers have worked so hard to establish.Sergei Sokolov is a Director of Product Management for Test and Performance tools at SmartBear Software. In his more than fifteen years in the software industry, Sergei has held positions in every part of the software lifecycle, from QA to engineering and engineering management, to professional services, pre-sales and product management. His passion in software is the holy grail of achieving high quality with the least effort.Right now, Chrome has a well-deserved reputation for speed and reliability. When Chrome launched in September 2008, it was the fastest web browser by a country mile. Google made sure everyone knew that performance – defined as speed, reliability, and security – were reasons why they should choose Chrome as their new browser.Chrome’s blazing fast speed is why Microsoft and Mozilla invested in performance optimization for Internet Explorer and Firefox, respectively. They’ve caught up In the three years since. But in speed test after speed test, Chrome still places first or a close second against competing browsers in key performance categories.Chrome also regularly emerges unscathed from honeypot hacking competitions. Google has gone so far as to offer a $20,000 bounty to any hacker who could crack Chrome’s code.Google’s engineering and PR work is paying off. Chrome’s position as “the fastest, safest browser” is the reason why Microsoft’s Internet Explorer, Mozilla’s Firefox, Apple’s Safari and other browsers continue to cede market share to Google in the PC browser wars.The Opposite of Mission-CriticalChrome’s success is due, in large part, to Google’s positioning of the browser in consumers’ minds as the best of the bunch for the central mission of browsing the Web. But that positioning is under threat by a growing crop of user-generated add-ons that extend the functionality of Chrome while also destabilizing it.With applications such as Google Plus, Google Apps, and Google Docs, Chrome becomes more of a platform and less of a simple web browser. Google wants to give users a rich experience, with a variety of open source extensions developed by third parties. But there is growing frustration among users related to low quality or poor performance of these add-ons.In many cases, these free extensions, which any developer of any skill level can promote in the official Chrome Web Store, are not subjected to the rigorous, professional quality assurance and performance testing that Chrome itself benefits from. The reputation risk posed to the Chrome brand from this fast-growing ecosystem of free extensions became evident when Google launched Google Plus a few weeks ago.Developers from around the world rushed to create Chrome extensions that filled gaps or added functionality to Google Plus. They paid attention to Plus user complaints and in short order loaded up the Chrome Web Store with hundreds of new extensions (I counted 172 at the time of this writing).Word of these extensions spread rapidly across the Google Plus social network and several became “must have” tools. One of the first to go viral was Surplus. It was also one of the first to regularly slow down, destabilize or crash Chrome. Another is G+ Me, which is now taking Google Plus by storm. It too gained a reputation for slowing Chrome to a crawl or causing bizarre behavior while users were using Google Plus.Watching the stream of posts on the Google Plus social network, it became clear that many users were unaware their extensions were bombing the browser. Some users gave up and switched to Firefox or another web browser. Others became annoyed and even angry, blaming Google Plus or Chrome for the instability. Some users, of course, deduced the root cause and either spread the word or contacted the developer of the errant extension.With applications such as Google Plus, Google Apps and Google Docs, Chrome becomes more of a platform and less of a simple web browser. Google wants to give users a rich experience, with a variety of open source extensions developed by third parties. But there is growing frustration among users related to low quality or poor performance of these add-ons.Extensions can have performance problems of their own (e.g., inefficient, quickly hacked together code) that affect the perceived user experience. Or they may have some hard-to-anticipate dependencies on external data streams, web services or servers and affect overall Chrome’s performance indirectly. All of these issues can and do result in substantially reduced browser performance and a degraded user experience. And that takes some of the shine off the Chrome brand.A Call for Quality for Extension DevelopersHere’s my plea (on my bended knee) to the talented guys and gals who build extensions for Chrome: Please performance-test them before releasing to the web-wide world. Don’t force unsuspecting Chrome’s users to be your alpha-version crash test dummies.Performance is one of those non-functional requirements, or qualities, that takes you beyond the commonly expected effort of getting the code to work. It is also an aspect that could make or break an otherwise cool idea cast in software. In the end, just as a finding a different website to shop from when a user’s first selection is too slow, switching to another browser they perceive as faster and more reliable is just as simple. And that hurts everything you’re trying to accomplish by supporting the Chrome ecosystem.Here’s my plea (on my bended knee) to the talented guys and gals who build extensions for Chrome: Please performance-test them before releasing to the web-wide world. Don’t force unsuspecting Chrome’s users to be your alpha-version crash test dummies.Chrome extensions can be performance tested in at least two ways: on their direct performance and impact on the browser.Direct performance analysis of an extension can be performed by an application profiler. Considering the nature of the application in question, the profiler must be able to profile a collection of many components simultaneously: the browser itself (which, in the case of Chrome, implies C and/or C++), the extension code (which might be a mix of HTML, JavaScript, PHP, Java, etc.) and any dynamic code executing within the browser itself.Indirect impact will be an effect of an extension on rendering a web page originally unrelated to the extension. The end user impact, or lack thereof, can be measured by recording a few use cases on a few representative web pages with a performance monitoring tool. Look at page load timings before and after installing the extension, or set some thresholds. Replay the use cases to analyze whether the performance changed. (This can also be thought of as performance regression testing.)There are several free and commercial tools available to extension developers for conducting direct and indirect impact testing, so there’s no excuse for not testing code early and often.Google built a better, faster browser, and the rest of the industry followed suit. The result: the web experience improved for everyone overall (and that, by the way, is Google’s true objective: a faster web is better for people using SaaS apps, cloud solutions, and search).As developers, lets show our appreciation for what Google has wrought for users everywhere. Lets ensure the extensions we build to improve the user experience actually do, in practice, make it better. Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Related Posts 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Tags:#Browsers#Google#web center_img A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… sergei sokolov 1last_img read more

first_imgThe week of May 16 saw the introduction of a House resolution to censure IRS Commissioner John Koskinen. In addition, lawmakers presented a number of tax reform proposals, including one that is meant to simplify how derivatives are taxed, and a bill intended to limit two corporate tax loopholes. The Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) issued a report finding that the IRS has made very little improvement in reducing improper Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) payments. The IRS announced that it will begin beta testing a new authentication and access process for its Get Transcript Online tool. The IRS also released finalized regulations for disbursements from designated Roth accounts to multiple destinations.CongressHouse. The House passed the Stolen Identity Refund Fraud Prevention Bill of 2016 (HR 3832), sponsored by Rep. James Renacci, R-Ohio, by voice vote on May 16 (TAXDAY, 2016/05/17, C.1). HR 3832 is a bipartisan measure that provides for a number of changes related to IRS administration regarding identity theft.An IRS spokesperson told Wolters Kluwer on May 16 that Commissioner John Koskinen “remains focused on serving the nation’s taxpayers” after the House Judiciary Committee announced it will review Koskinen’s performance as chief of the agency (TAXDAY, 2016/05/17, C.2). On May 13, the Judiciary Committee revealed it will hold two hearings in coming weeks about Koskinen’s leadership at the IRS. The first is scheduled for May 24.The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz, R-Tex., on May 18 introduced a resolution to censure Koskinen. (TAXDAY, 2016/05/19, C.2). The resolution seeks Koskinen’s resignation or removal, and requires the forfeiture of his pension, Chaffetz said in a statement.House Ways and Means Committee ranking member Sander Levin, D-Mich., introduced the Protecting the U.S. Corporate Tax Base Bill of 2016 on May 17 (TAXDAY, 2016/05/18, C.1). According to Levin, the bill is intended to limit two so-called “corporate tax loopholes.”Senate. The Senate Finance Committee (SFC) on May 17 examined the strengths and weaknesses of an integration of the corporate and individual tax systems. (TAXDAY, 2016/05/18, C.1). Chairman Orrin G. Hatch., R-Utah, announced that he will introduce a proposal in the next several weeks that will eliminate double taxation of corporate income by providing a dividends paid deduction. This deduction would reduce the current favoritism toward debt-financed investment, as well as reduce inversions and the “lock-out effect,” he noted.The Senate Small Business and Entrepreneurship Committee held a hearing on May 18 to discuss the impact of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) (P.L. 111-148) on small businesses (TAXDAY, 2016/05/19, C.4). Lawmakers examined various tax implications of the healthcare law and how IRS regulations have affected small business growth.SFC ranking member Ron Wyden, D-Ore., released a tax reform proposal on May 18 focused on simplifying how derivatives are taxed (TAXDAY, 2016/05/19, C.1). According to Wyden, there would be a mark-to-market requirement for treatment of derivatives and ordinary tax treatment on resulting gains and losses. This requirement would also apply to combinations of derivatives and their underlying investments, implementing a capital hedging limitation.TreasuryEITC Improper Payment. TIGTA issued a report finding that the IRS has made little improvement in reducing improper payments of the EITC (Ref. No. 2016-40-036; TAXDAY, 2016/05/20, T.1). TIGTA found that the IRS failed to report an overall EITC improper payment rate of less than 10 percent.IRSGet Transcript Authentication. The IRS is scheduled to begin testing a new authentication and access process for its Get Transcript app, as part of efforts to evaluate and improve its cybersecurity measures (TAXDAY, 2016/05/20, I.2). More information about the new authentication and access process and full re-launch of the app will be made available once testing has concluded.Code Secs. 45 and 48 Guidance Updated. The IRS released corrected guidance addressing the extension and modification of Code Sec. 45 and 48 that resulted from the Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes Act of 2015 (PATH Act) (P.L. 114-113; Notice 2016-31; TAXDAY 2016/05/19, I.1). The guidance is applicable to any project for which a taxpayer claims the renewable electricity production tax (PTC) credit or the energy investment credit in lieu of the PTC under Code Sec. 45 and 48 that is placed in service after certain dates.Military Personnel. The IRS reminded members of the U.S. military and their families about potential tax benefits available to them (TAXDAY, 2016/05/20, I.1). Publication 3 (2015), Armed Forces Tax Guide, provides information and tips to help service members and their families take advantages of all tax benefits allowed by law.Roth Accounts. The IRS issued finalized regulations that eliminate the requirement that each disbursement from a designated Roth account that is directly rolled over to an eligible retirement plan be treated as a separate distribution from any amount paid directly to the employee and subject to the pro rata rule for allocating pre-tax and after-tax amounts to each distribution (T.D. 9769; TAXDAY, 2016/05/18, I.1). Under the final regulations, if disbursements are made from a taxpayer’s designated Roth account to the taxpayer and also to the taxpayer’s Roth IRA or designated Roth account in a direct rollover, the pre-tax amounts will be allocated first to the direct rollover, as opposed to being allocated pro rata to each destination.Memorial Day Systems Shutdown. The IRS has scheduled the annual Memorial Day Systems Shutdown for the Modernized e-File (MeF) Systems to begin Saturday, May 28 at 11:59 a.m. and end on Tuesday, May 31 at 6 a.m. (TAXDAY, 2016/05/18, I.7). As the Production and ATS MeF Systems will not be operational during this timeframe, users are asked to refrain from accessing the systems to transmit business/individual/state tax returns, retrieve acknowledgments or submit any other service requests.Enrolled Agents. The IRS has begun its annual enrolled agent (EA) clean-up (TAXDAY, 2016/05/16, I.3). Over 5,000 EAs who did not renew during the 2016 cycle will be moved to inactive status, while more than 2,000 EAs who did not renew during the 2013 and 2016 cycles will be moved to terminate status.Offers in Compromise. The IRS notified tax professionals that, effective immediately, the Service will return newly filed Offer in Compromise (OIC) applications in cases where the taxpayer has not filed all required tax returns (TAXDAY, 2016/05/16, I.3). Fees will also be returned.By Jalisa Mathis and Jessica Watkins, Wolters Kluwer News Stafflast_img read more

SDC Assists Communities to Undertake Wealth Creation Projects

first_imgThe Social Development Commission (SDC) has been making gains in developing the nation’s communities, assisting them to access approximately $30 million to date, to undertake various wealth creation projects.According to Executive Director of the SDC, Dr. Dwayne Vernon, the agency has helped communities to access these monies, “by virtue of being trained, completing a community priority plan, and submitting a project proposal for a myriad of community issues.”He was speaking to JIS News following the SDC’s 12th staging of its islandwide Participatory, Accountability and Responsibility (PAR) session at the Mandeville Parish Church Hall in Manchester, on March 25.“It is clear that we are making gains, especially in the area of helping communities identify wealth creation projects and many of the communities have identified ingenious ways of surviving. The whole issue of agriculture at the local level has been boosted, persons are doing a number of greenhouse projects, working in terms of goat rearing, pig rearing, and small community projects dealing with some domestic type issues,” Dr. Vernon said.He noted that it is also evident that the communities are becoming more resilient and citizens are recognising the importance of being a part of community-based groups.The Executive Director said that based on the feedback from the PAR sessions, which provide stakeholders with updates on the work and achievements of the Commission, it is also clear that citizens appreciate the work of the organisation and welcomed the opportunity to openly criticize the work of the SDC, while giving suggestions and recommendations.“Today, we have had a lot of testimonies about the impact the work of the entity has had on their lives. Many mention the fact that their capacity has been so built, that individuals and communities have been able to apply for funding from different sources. We have heard the testimony of youth groups talking about how involved they have become in their communities and how they themselves are trying to help others in their community,” he added.Meanwhile, Mayor of Mandeville, Councillor Brenda Ramsay thanked the SDC for its work with various local entities to support the development the parish of Manchester.“We have always noted your presence at our council meetings, parish safety and security meetings, the Manchester parish development commission meetings, the inter-agency meetings, our face to face meeting, among other civic and community organizations,” she said.During the PAR sessions, information is provided on matters, such as the SDC’s organisational targets, programmes, expenditure and relevant operational matters. The sessions also allow for the development of new and/or refined strategies influenced by the input of stakeholders.Sessions have been held in all parishes except St. James. The SDC team will head to St. James for its final forum for this year, on March 27.By Alecia Smith-Edwards, JIS Reporterlast_img read more

The Who To Donate Song Royalties To Teen Cancer America

first_imgOn April 7, The Who will release a collectible blue vinyl 7″ of their latest classic ‘Be Lucky’ from ‘The Who Hits 50!’ album backed with the band’s very first single from 1965 ‘I Can’t Explain.’‘Be Lucky’ is The Who’s first new material in eight years and in keeping with their ongoing support for Teenage Cancer charities, the band have donated their royalties from the song to Teen Cancer America, a charity founded in 2011 by Roger Daltrey and Pete Townshend.The Who will also bring “THE WHO HITS 50!” tour to North America this year. “THE WHO HITS 50!” tour will kick off its spring run on April 15 in Tampa, FL and will include 21 stops throughout the east before wrapping on May 30 in Forest Hills, NY. The fall leg will launch September 14 in San Diego, CA and begin with West Coast dates throughout the U.S. and across Canada before concluding November 4 in Philadelphia, PA. Tickets are on sale now; more information can be found at thewho.com/tour. In addition, $1 from each ticket sold on “THE WHO HITS 50!” North American tour will benefit Teen Cancer America.last_img read more

UPDATE Police seek Vancouver burglary suspect

first_imgVancouver police searched for a burglar Monday afternoon in the 2800 block of Grand Boulevard. Area residents were advised to stay inside while officers canvassed the area with a K-9 team. A woman came home just before 3 p.m. and saw a man running in her backyard. Police confirmed that a window was broken and someone had gained access to the home, said Kim Kapp, spokeswoman for the Vancouver Police Department. CRESA sent out a reverse-911 call to residents of the area, telling people to stay inside for about half an hour. People who had registered mobile phones, VoIP phones and email addresses on CRESA’s notification website also received a notification.“Obviously, we don’t want anyone to come into contact with a K-9” or leave their home unsecured, Kapp said. The suspect, described as a man in his early 20s wearing a gray hoodie and blue pants, was not found. They suspended the search around 4:15 p.m.,according to CRESA. Officers did locate a different man, with outstanding warrants, and took him into custody.To receive emergency community alerts by phone, register online at http://cresa911.org/be-informed.last_img read more

Indian Stocks Plunge After RBI Keeps Key Rates Unchanged Lowers Growth Estimate

first_imgIndian stock markets ended lower for the fifth straight session on Tuesday after the central bank left its key rates unchanged in its first quarter monetary policy review and cut its growth forecast for the fiscal year.The benchmark BSE Sensex plunged 1.20 percent, or 235.85 points, to 19,357.43. The 50 share NSE Nifty declined 1.21 percent, or 70.75 points, to 5,760.90.The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) kept its policy repo rate and the cash reserve ratio (CRR) unchanged as widely expected at 7.25 percent and 4 percent, respectively. The central bank also revised the Asia’s third largest economy’s growth projection for 2013-14 to 5.5 percent, down from its prior estimate of 5.7 percent provided in May, citing global growth concerns. RBI also said that the recent liquidity tightening measures will be rolled back in a calibrated manner.”The policy statement is slightly more dovish than what we had expected. We expect that within two months, the cash tightening steps will be faded out, and monetary easing will resume. We are expecting another 50 basis points cut in the repo rate in 2013,” Sujan Hajra, chief economist at Anand Rathi in Mumbai, told Reuters.All the 13 BSE sectoral indices, except IT, ended with losses. Realty, oil and gas, power and PSU sectors experienced selling pressure.Realty sector plunged 3.84 percent to 1344.52. DLF tumbled 7.22 percent and HDIL plunged 4.36 percent while Unitech declined 3.79 percent.In the Midcap space, Havells India tumbled 13.31 percent and Punj Lloyd slumped 9.96 percent while Raymond declined 9.48 percent.The overall market breadth is negative with 1542 declines against 724 advanced on the BSE.Meanwhile, Asian markets mostly advanced on Tuesday as investors’ exercised caution ahead of the US Federal Reserve’s policy decision later this week. Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 surged 1.53 percent and China’s Shanghai Composite gained 0.70 percent, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng advanced 0.48 percent and South Korea’s KOSPI gained 0.90 percent.last_img read more

Study shows crayfish exhibit anxietylike behavior when stressed

first_img Play Spontaneous behavior of unstressed crayfish in the aquatic dark/light plus-shaped maze. Credit: Pascal Fossat. In another part of the experiment, the researchers examined the stressed crayfish and found they had elevated levels of serotonin, the same neurotransmitter that has been found to be elevated in stressed humans. The team found that they could cause the same types of protective behavior in the crayfish just by injecting them with serotonin. They also found that they could calm the crayfish by injecting them with chlordiazepoxide, a drug used to treat anxiety in humans—afterwards the stressed subjects ventured into the well-lit parts of the tanks in much the same ways as the unstressed crayfish. Explore further © 2014 Phys.org PausePlay% buffered00:0000:00UnmuteMuteDisable captionsEnable captionsSettingsCaptionsDisabledQuality0SpeedNormalCaptionsGo back to previous menuQualityGo back to previous menuSpeedGo back to previous menu0.5×0.75×Normal1.25×1.5×1.75×2×Exit fullscreenEnter fullscreen More information: Science 13 June 2014: Vol. 344 no. 6189 pp. 1293-1297 DOI: 10.1126/science.1248811 A new tiny species of crayfish from the swamps of coastal eastern Australia Citation: Study shows crayfish exhibit anxiety-like behavior when stressed (2014, June 13) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2014-06-crayfish-anxiety-like-behavior-stressed.html PausePlay% buffered00:0000:00UnmuteMuteDisable captionsEnable captionsSettingsCaptionsDisabledQuality0SpeedNormalCaptionsGo back to previous menuQualityGo back to previous menuSpeedGo back to previous menu0.5×0.75×Normal1.25×1.5×1.75×2×Exit fullscreenEnter fullscreencenter_img (Phys.org) —A team of researchers working in France has found that when stressed, crayfish tend to exhibit anxiety-like behavior. In their paper published in the journal Science, the team describes how they conducted experiments involving crayfish behavior under stressful conditions and found that in addition to changes in behavior, the crustaceans also had elevated levels of a neurotransmitter also found in stressed humans. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Stress and anxiety are common problems in modern life as people try to fulfill expectations that arise from their jobs, family life and friends. Prior research has shown that stress is hard on people, both mentally and physically. For that reason, scientists have been searching for many years for ways to alleviate the stress that people feel—they’ve come up with many solutions, from advocating exercise to administering pharmaceuticals. None have been found to be the ultimate cure, however, so the search continues. In this new effort, the researchers in France studied anxiety behavior due to stress in crayfish to gain a new perspective on the condition and perhaps ways to treat it.To find out how crayfish respond to stress, the researchers subjected several of them to mild electric shocks then placed them into a specially designed tank of water—it was shaped like a cross, with two wings well lit, and two left in the dark. The researchers found that when the stressed crayfish were placed into the tank, they tended to avoid the well lit wings—a protective sort of behavior. Unstressed crayfish placed in the tank were tentative but did eventually explore the well-lit parts of the tank as they searched for food. Play This AAAS animation describes a primitive form of anxiety in crayfish, which is controlled by serotonin and treatable with anxiolytic drugs. Credit: Science/AAAS. The researchers note that their findings do not indicate that crayfish feel stress or anxiety in the same ways as we do, but instead suggest that the mechanism behind both is clearly similar, which hints at a shared evolutionary origin. A crayfish entering a light arm. Credit: Jean-Paul Delbecque. Journal information: Sciencelast_img read more

Netflix has launched in Switzerland – the fourth E

first_imgNetflix has launched in Switzerland – the fourth European country in which the service has debuted this week, following launches in France, Germany and Austria.The subscription video-on-demand provider has adopted a variegated pricing model in Switzerland, with the standard-definition version of the service available for CHF11.90 (€9.83). Access via two displays with HD streaming costs CHF12.90, while access via four devices with HD or UHD streaming costs CHF17.90.The service is available via tablets, smartphones, game consoles and computers, offering a mix of Hollywood movies, TV series, documentaries, independent movies, comedy and kids programming.Series available at launch include Netflix originals Orange is the New Black and Bojack Horseman. Other series include Fargo, Penny Dreadful and From Dusk Till Dawn. Titles expected soon include Marco Polo, Daredevil and Sense8.Netflix Switzerland will also show the first two seasons of House of Cards as well as new seasons of Netflix original Hemlock Grove and the fourth season of The Killing. German series to be shown include Stromberg, Pastewka and Tatortreiniger. The streaming video service will also show German language films including Keinohrhasen and its sequel Zweiohrkueken and the forthcoming film version of Stromberg.last_img read more