Home Blog Page 4

More student and faculty housing at California colleges?

As California’s housing crisis threatens higher education expansion and upends college towns, State Senator Scott Wiener on Tuesday introduced a bill to streamline and spur student housing development and professors on state campuses.

The proposal, Senate Bill 886, exempts certain residential projects proposed by public colleges and universities on their campuses from being blocked under the auspices of the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). Projects would still have to meet state environmental standards, but would not be subject to prosecution under the CEQA, which has been used to block or stifle college and university plans.

Wiener, the San Francisco Democrat and chairman of the Senate Housing Committee, said the housing crisis has left too many students and faculty without stable housing. “It’s real,” Wiener said. “It affects the learning ability of our young students.

The proposal was met with skepticism by a Berkeley neighborhood group leading opposition to UC Berkeley’s long-term campus expansion plan. “It’s not clear to me that this bill solves Berkeley’s problem,” said Phil Bokovoy, president of Save Berkeley’s Neighborhoods. A court ruling on the group’s lawsuit alleging the university failed to properly adhere to CEQA could cut admissions by a third this year.

The state’s housing crisis has hit state and community college students and faculty hard. A 2021 state report revealed widespread homelessness and housing insecurity among students – estimating that more than one million students struggled to find housing while attending college courses.

Wiener said the bill was under consideration long before the court’s recent decision in the UC Berkeley battle. But he thinks it will limit the use of state environmental law to block or throttle new housing projects.

The bill would cover on-campus projects of the University of California (UC), California State University (CSU), and California Community College (CCC) systems. It also requires project developers to pay construction workers the prevailing wage and to use skilled labour, a key provision for gaining support from trade organizations. The exemption does not apply to projects on farms or wetlands, in high fire areas, or redevelopment that demolishes affordable or rent-controlled housing.

Major developments would be subject to ministerial review, but most importantly could avoid lengthy and costly delays caused by environmental challenges.

The bill is backed by pro-housing, student and faculty groups. It has also received key state building and construction trades approval. Jeremy Smith, deputy legislative director for building trades, said the bill would ensure fair treatment for workers on major developments and new projects would provide training for apprentices. “We don’t take CEQA streamlining lightly,” he said.

But slow-growing groups and advocates of local control of development are likely to align themselves against the measure.

Save Berkeley’s Neighborhoods sued the university in 2018, claiming it violated state environmental law by failing to plan for or adequately manage the community impacts of a surge in enrollment. A state appeals court this month upheld a lower court order to freeze admissions to UC Berkeley as the lawsuit continues to be litigated, which could cut 3,050 new students and transfer from their incoming class.

Bokovoy said his group supports new housing for UC Berkeley students and faculty, but wants university administrators to agree to freeze admissions until they find answers to their lack of accommodations. “The solution is within their reach,” he said.

Faculty representatives said on Tuesday that the lack of housing made it difficult for poorly paid lecturers and instructors to teach in California schools. Students said housing insecurity leads to dropout rates, high student debt and poor quality education.

UC Berkeley senior Josh Lewis said the lawsuits and challenges of expanding universities have limited opportunities for a new generation of leaders. “Every admissions denial based on outdated law, every housing project shut down, every student forced to choose between having a home and having an education,” he said, “is preventing our communities from showing leadership. “

The bill will go through several public hearings and will require Governor Gavin Newsom’s signature to become law.

Woman charged with stealing money from Chippewa Falls youth basketball organization


CHIPPEWA FALLS, Wis. (WEAU) — A Chippewa Falls woman is accused of stealing money from a youth basketball organization.

Lisa Johnson, 54, is accused of stealing $83,846.93 from Cardinal Flight Girls Basketball while she was the nonprofit group’s treasurer from September 2014 to August 2021.

According to the criminal complaint, the organization‘s new treasurer found several discrepancies in the books provided by Johnson upon handing over the role of treasurer. The group created a spreadsheet of the alleged fraudulent activity and turned it over to law enforcement. After obtaining more information, such as physical copies of checks deposited in the organization’s bank, investigators determined that Johnson appeared to have withdrawn or spent nearly $84,000 in cash from the organization’s account and deposited $73,919.61. Some of the checks were made payable to Johnson, while debit card purchases and other charges to the account ranged from retail and restaurants to airline tickets and cell phone bills.

When investigators questioned Johnson, she said she tried to pay back the money she had taken from the account, but admitted she was not good with money and did not had no intention of stealing from the organization.

According to online court records, a memo was included in the court documents asking for restitution in the amount of $13,200. Johnson will appear in Chippewa County Circuit Court on April 12 and faces a charge of commercial theft between $10,000 and $100,000.

Copyright 2022 WEAU. All rights reserved.

New Orleans City Council to remap neighborhoods; will he unify the divided neighborhoods? |


As the New Orleans City Council undertakes its once-a-decade review of council district maps, this time on a rush, much of the attention will turn to two contiguous districts where fortunes have swung to the over the past 10 years.

After the 2010 census, District C had the largest population of the council’s five districts. It now has the smallest, well below the ideal range based on the 2020 census. District D, meanwhile, has gone from last to first.

Together, the two neighborhoods cut a vertical slice through the geographic center of the city. Bordering the district along Claiborne Avenue are Treme, the 7th Arrondissement, Saint-Roch and Saint-Claude, culturally significant neighborhoods split between the two.

Below the border is District C, which also includes Faubourg Marigny, Bywater, the French Quarter and Algiers. District D groups the upper parts of the splintered neighborhoods with Gentilly, Desire, the lakeside subdivisions above City Park, and the Downman Road corridor.

Trumpeter James Andrews leads a second line for the late Malcolm “Dr. John” Rebennack, on Claiborne Avenue in Treme on June 7, 2019. The Claiborne Corridor forms a rough boundary between two New Orleans City Council districts, which could be adjusted during Redistricting 2022.

Council members are now set to realign the traditional boundaries of these neighborhoods with political ones, which is one of the criteria council members and their councilors will consider when drafting new maps, according to the site. City Council website.

Population parity is the top priority of the New Orleans Home Rule Charter. The population of the city is 383,997, which means that the ideal municipal district will have 76,799 inhabitants. Map designers generally aim to create district populations within 5% of the ideal.

To achieve this goal, District C must expand by at least 4,850 people and District D must contract by at least 1,100 people.

Eugene Green

Eugene Green, Member of the New Orleans City Council

Public debate on how the boundaries might change will not start until council consultants deliver preliminary maps at a public hearing, which is scheduled for Wednesday. Council members are likely to consider adjustments to the boundary between District C and District D to equalize populations while improving neighborhood integrity.

“I’m not going to spell out where the change needs to take place, but some things are kind of out there and obvious,” said District D councilman Eugene Green.

Public hearings scheduled

Following the release of the draft maps, district-level public hearings for residents are scheduled for March 7-8. The maps will then be revised and the council must approve the final versions by March 16, according to the charter. If council members miss the deadline, they lose their pay until a commission of college presidents completes the job for them.

The 2022 timeline is much more compressed than the last redistricting, in 2011, when board members approved new maps about two months after consultants released draft versions. Redistricting after the 2010 census was more complex, following huge population losses resulting from Hurricane Katrina five years earlier. District B – covering the Warehouse District, the Central Business District, Central City, the Irish Channel and the Garden District – was the only one left with a population in the sweet spot.

At the time, the majority white council split along racial lines to approve the map that is now in effect, following bitter disputes over competing proposals. When the dust settled, the Treme, Saint-Roch and Saint-Claude districts found themselves divided between two municipalities. Treme was divided by Claiborne Avenue and the Interstate 10 overpass, and the new Claiborne Avenue border line continued through St. Roch.

Zigzag limit

Further downstream, Saint-Claude was cut even further, with a zigzag boundary running down from Claiborne to Avenue Saint-Claude. In part of the ward, the boundary places each side of the divided thoroughfare between Claiborne Avenue and Robertson Street in separate council districts.

The new map improved District D while shrinking District C, and population changes over the next decade accelerated what City Council started. District C lost over 3,000 people, with about 70% of those losses in Algiers, while District D expanded almost everywhere; St. Bernard, Filmore, Dillard and several other neighborhoods gained over 1,000 residents.

Kristin Gisleson Palmer, council member for District C during the last redistricting, suggested that part of Treme should now be returned to District C. She also suggested connecting St. Roch and St. Claude by pushing the district boundary C further towards Lake Pontchartrain.

Kristin Gisleson Palmer

New Orleans City Council member Kristin Gisleson Palmer was pictured on June 3, 2021.

“When you look at the council, our primary responsibility is land use. A lot of land use issues come from neighborhoods championing certain issues,” Palmer said. “So I think it’s really important to keep them as together as possible.”

Current District C council member Freddie King III did not respond to an interview request.

Returning the lake portion of Treme to District C and streamlining the border along Claiborne to St. Claude would create two districts of similar size, each slightly below ideal. This would partially unify the divided neighborhoods, although Saint-Roch and Saint-Claude would remain split along Claiborne Avenue.

“Nothing will ever be perfect,” Palmer said.

Purchases made through links on our site may earn us an affiliate commission

Legislation would create resources for climate and environmental education in classrooms — ecoRI News

By ROB SMITH/ecoRI News Team

PROVIDENCE — A bill that would introduce climate change education resources into Rhode Island classrooms is being met with support, though critics say it would overburden already stressed teachers.

Representative Terri Cortvriend, D-Portsmouth, and Senator Valerie Lawson, D-East Providence, introduced the Climate Literacy Act (H7275/S2039) in both houses of the General Assembly. The bill requires the Rhode Island Department of Education (RIDE) to compile resources for educators of all programs to add climate and environmental literacy programs to existing classrooms.

“This is an opportunity for us to provide people who educate people in all of these areas with more resources to do so,” Lawson said. “It’s something we all appreciate as educators, and children too.”

Survey data from the Yale Climate Change Communication Program found that 77% of Rhode Islanders think college students should learn about climate change. Despite the strict curriculum requirements, RIDE does not require educators in the state to include environmental or climate education in the classroom, but advocates want to change that, with a broad-based approach at all levels.

Under the proposed legislation, RIDE would be required to consult with environmental experts and current educators to create a resource bank containing lesson plans and other teaching materials that teachers could use to incorporate environmental or change themes. climate in the classroom. The resources would be available to any public or charter school under RIDE’s jurisdiction. The wording of the legislation would also provide resources for potential career paths in the green economy.

Proponents emphasize the need to tailor resources to both classroom and grade level.

“You don’t talk to a 5-year-old about p-values ​​in research papers, how everything [with climate change] it’s death and destruction,” said Jeanine Silversmith, executive director of the Rhode Island Environmental Education Association. “You get them excited about the natural world, encourage good observation skills, how to argue what they see, debate what they see with another student, or give feedback to their peers. These are all good science skills. It simply uses climate change as an anchor phenomenon.

The bill received broad support at a recent hearing by the House Environment and Natural Resources Committee of Educators and Business Groups. This is the second year in a row that climate literacy legislation has been introduced.

“What we found very appealing about the bill last year was the way it’s structured,” said James Parisi, a union representative for the Rhode Federation of Teachers and Health Professionals. Island. “It’s not adding another ornament to the Christmas tree, it’s not adding additional requirements [for graduation].”

But not everyone agreed with this assessment, and some expressed concern that already time-strapped teachers were being overwhelmed by the demands and professional development overload.

“We passed the Right to Read Act a few years ago and it had major implications for teacher training,” said Tim Ryan, a lobbyist for the Rhode Island School Superintendents Association. “Some teachers have spent over 100 hours training on the right to read.”

A member of the public testified at the House hearing in opposition to the bill. “I think climate literacy is a controversial topic,” said Scituate resident Laurie Gaddis Barrett. “We bring political ideology into the classroom.”

Cortvriend said during his talk that at least one teacher told him they were avoiding the topic because it was too controversial.

“All the more reason we need to teach it, because it really is science,” she said. “If we all understand science, then we can discuss the politics of what we do to meet scientific challenges. [of climate change].”

The bill was retained for further study.

Upside down | People who count birds make a difference every day | Parks-Leisure


“Birds are everywhere, all the time, doing fascinating things!”

That’s what’s so exciting about the great annual backyard bird count, which takes place this weekend. Even in winter the birds are very active and fun to watch.

For 25+ years, people like you from around the world have joined the Great Backyard Bird Count for four days in February to watch, learn, count and celebrate birds. This year, the dates are from February 18 to 21, and your participation counts! Whether you see one bird or hundreds over the weekend, you can share your joy of birdwatching and connecting with nature in your own backyard or in your favorite natural areas.

To enter, count the birds you see for as little as 15 minutes on any of the four days. Then submit your bird list online at birdcount.org be part of a global movement to better understand how bird populations are doing. You help scientists better monitor and protect birds around the world.

Don’t know how to identify birds? We are here to help you ! At the Lake Homer Interpretive Center, join a naturalist on Monday to learn about winter birds and how to identify them. Ornithological walks are at 10:30 a.m. and 2 p.m. ccfpd.org for more information and to register.

Citizen science opportunities like this are a great way to use crowdsourcing and public participation to improve scientific research. They are also a great way to get kids interested in science!

Want even more? Be sure to sign up for our March 5 Frog Call Investigation training. You’ll learn all about how to monitor frog populations – by sound – at one of the seven preserves in the Champaign County Forest Preserve District. It’s a fascinating way to learn about the frogs while having a great excuse to head to one of the reserves in the evening. Choose a site closest to you or a site you want to explore further!

Also watch for more information later this year on a new citizen science opportunity monitoring bat populations on reserves.

There’s always plenty to do in your Champaign County Forest Preserves! Come and visit us quickly to enjoy all that nature has to offer.

Pam Leiter is assistant director of the Department of Museums and Education for the Champaign County Forest Preserve District. She manages the Homer Lake Interpretive Center and oversees environmental programming throughout the district. Email him at [email protected]

CrossFit training fundraiser organized for Change Unchained Organization


PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) — Several CrossFit members from across the region gathered at the Panama City CrossFit site Saturday for a fundraising workout to fight sex trafficking.

“What they’ve done is they’ve created a workout that people are giving money to get involved in. Which goes towards Change Unchained,” said Troy Ulshoeffer, founder of Change Unchained.

Change Unchained is a non-profit organization that works to help trafficked children reunite with their families.

“We are working with law enforcement to perform search and rescue operations for missing, exploited and trafficked persons across the country,” Ulshoeffer said.

The benefits of CrossFit training benefit the organization by enabling them to provide small homes. The homes are on a 21 acre parcel of land on the Gulf Coast.

“In this small village of homes, we will allow survivors to stay there temporarily while they get back on their feet and deal with the healing process with professionals and things of that nature,” Ulshoeffer said.

One participant explained what it meant to train for a new reason.

“It definitely adds a whole new element to practicing a workout. It’s really cool that each of the numbers and repeat patterns and time domains. They were all something important,” said Kassidy Kuykendall.

For Ulshoeffer, there’s a takeaway he hopes for everyone; especially the parents left with the event.

“Be evasive with your children, don’t be your child’s friend. Make sure it’s about the devices they interact with and their online activity. You have to watch that and even if your kid gets upset, in the long run it will be worth it, I promise,” Ulshoeffer said.

For those interested in getting involved with the organization, whether through donations or volunteering, visit their website or call 855-262-2228.

For those interested in Panama City CrossFit, visit their website, FacebookWhere instagram pages.

Copyright 2022 WJHG. All rights reserved.

Change Your Perspective On The World With These Tips For Birdwatching Around Kansas City | KCUR 89.3


This story was first published in KCUR’s Creative Adventure newsletter. You can sign up to get stories like this delivered to your inbox every Tuesday.

Interest in bird watching has increased over the past two years. The activity has an easy entry point but can turn into a lifelong passion. It is also a hobby that welcomes a wide range of participants, who can watch birds casually or pursue their goals with zeal.

The only thing birdwatching requires (after birds, of course) is stillness and observation. Charming, curious, and sometimes aggressive birds offer insight into a world that operates from a completely different perspective and mindset than our own.

Birdwatching also attunes the ornithologist to the environment, linking it closely to the weather, seasons, and time of day, as well as the song, sight, and movement of birds.

Recover this link with nature. There are many places and resources for beginners or experienced birders, including field guides, websites, and clubs. Check out our previous bird adventure and read on to find out how you can connect with our feathered friends.

Birdwatching in the yard

Take part in the Great Backyard Bird Count, which started on Friday and will continue until February 21. It’s a great excuse to spend some time outdoors (however, if you have strategically placed bird feeders, you can participate from the comfort of your window seat) while participating in a global initiative.

GBBC has been in action for 25 years, but if you’ve never participated or even seen birds before, watch the webinar and check out the suggested Merlin Bird ID app, via the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. eBird (also from Cornell) is another popular app to help you identify and record the birds you see.

Record your sightings and submit your results to help capture (metaphorically, of course!) bird populations around the world. If you don’t have a backyard, you can observe from another accessible space, such as a nearby city park. Join KC Parks at the Trailside Center on Holmes Road to participate in the Great Backyard Bird Count on a one-mile hike along Indian Creek Trail (multiple times Feb. 19-21), led by a Missouri Master Naturalists volunteer .

As you get to know your local birds, visitors will stand out. Many birders keep lists of the birds they observe. According to the US Fish & Wildlife Services, there are about 500 species of birds that live in or visit the Midwest, just 5% of the estimated 10,000 species in the world.

Another important counting day is Global Big Day, which coincides with World Migratory Bird Day. Last year, GBD broke records for participants and bird sightings. This year, it takes place on Saturday May 14, from midnight to midnight.

While most birds prefer wilder spaces, many have adapted to human environments and made them their own.

Urban Bird Watching

Just because you might be stuck in the city doesn’t mean you’re devoid of birds. While most birds prefer wilder spaces, many have adapted to human environments and made them their own.

Rock pigeons, robins and crows are ubiquitous and easy to identify. Peregrine falcons have found respite in the crevices of skyscrapers. Cliff swallows build mud nests under bridges. Canada geese occasionally bring traffic to a halt near Brush Creek, red-tailed hawks are often seen riding the updraft above the UMKC Volker campus, and red-headed vultures frequent the skies above highways.

Although starlings are considered pest birds, there is no denying the mysterious beauty of a whisper, seeming to float and move against the city skyline. In reality, the herd is trying to escape a predator, but it’s still a sight to behold. See this video taken near the River Market.

It might be cheating, but you don’t need to travel to Antarctica to add penguins to your roster. Join the Kansas City Zoo for their March of the Penguins, February 19-20 and 26-27. You can also observe penguins almost anytime via the KC Zoo Penguin Cam. (If you check in at night, you’ll see them sleeping, which is legitimately cute.)

021922_CreativeAdventure_eagles_Greg Zenitsky_Flickr.jpg

About an hour from the city, nature reserves and wildlife refuges provide safe environments for migrating birds to rest and refuel.

In nature

If you want to see a wide variety of birds, you can travel to different biomes: wetlands, grasslands, forests and more. Avid birders travel the world, but there’s plenty of variety close to home, especially with Kansas City located along many species’ flyway.

Between March 1 and June 1 in the spring, and August 1 and November 15 in the fall, check BirdCast to see which migratory birds pass through the area.

You do not know where to start ? KC Birding Walks shares likely birding locations, organized by region, and some of the types of birds you might see in that area.

Within an hour of town, nature reserves, conservancies and wildlife refuges provide safe environments for birds to rest and refuel, including the Swan Marsh National Wildlife Refuge (south of Louisburg, Kansas ), the Baker Wetlands (Lawrence, Kansas), Green Hills of Platte Wildlife Preserve (Parkville, Missouri), Smithville Lake (Smithville, Missouri), and Loess Bluffs National Wildlife Refuge (north of St. Joseph, Missouri).

Some places, like the Marais des Cygnes, provide checklists for the types of birds known to frequent their acres, what time of year to see them, and how common or rare they are – including the Great Heron, Giant Egret, plus a variety of warblers, woodpeckers and more.


Interest in bird watching has increased over the past two years. The activity has an easy entry point but can turn into a lifelong passion.

Positive environment

Unfortunately, many bird species are endangered, mainly due to human encroachment. According to the American Bird Conservancy, a leading conservation group, 11 bird species were added to the extinction list in 2021 by the USFWS, and nearly three billion birds have been lost since 1970. .

For local birds and annual visitors, there are ways to improve the environment and attract a variety of birds. Join the Missouri River Bird Observatory at the Burroughs Audubon Society of Greater Kansas City at Lake Jacomo for a series of free outdoor seminars on “Seven Simple Actions to Help Birds.” The next one is March 19.

The Eastern Bluebird is Missouri’s state bird, but for decades it was endangered. Mill Creek Streamway, a 17-mile trail in Johnson County, is part of the National Bluebird Trail, with more than 60 birdhouses. From Nelson Island at the north end of the trail, you can also spot bald eagles fishing in the Kansas River during the winter.

Lakeside Nature Center in Swope Park rehabilitates injured animals and exhibits a variety of birds that cannot be released back into the wild. They also have instructions for encouraging and protecting Chimney Swifts, if you are lucky enough to have their nest in your chimney.

You can also help birds that are just passing through on their arduous migrations. The National Wildlife Federation shares the American Bird Conservancy’s top 10 tips. There is also pressure to reduce light pollution in cities, which disorients nocturnal migrants.


There are plenty of tips for getting started with birdwatching, but before you buy an expensive pair of binoculars, spend hours studying a field guide, or download an app, there’s an easier way to start: get outside.

grouped together

Birdwatching is often a solo endeavor, but the best way to learn is to join experienced birders in the field. Local birding clubs organize field trips around the metro, many of which are free. Dedicated bird supply stores can help you with field guides and feeding supplies. There are also online communities, which allow people to share their bird photos, get help identifying an uncommon bird, and alert people to rare birds in the area.

This winter, birders spotted snowy owls in the region, in a rare irruption far south of their arctic climate, though sadly these sightings are becoming more frequent as climate change alters their habitat.

In early March 2021, the Kansas Birding Facebook group alerted members to a colony of blue herons — with 12 nests — along Indian Creek Parkway in Overland Park. Organizations include the Burroughs Audubon Society of Greater Kansas City, the Kansas Ornithological Society, Jayhawk Audubon, and the Missouri River Bird Observatory. Burroughs also houses a Nature Library which is free to visitors for internal use of the collection.

There are plenty of tips for getting started with birdwatching, but before you buy an expensive pair of binoculars, spend hours studying a field guide, or download an app, there’s an easier way to get started. Go outside. Sit quietly. Listen to the birds and try to distinguish the different cries. Pick just one or two prominent birds and study their markings and mannerisms. The more you get to know the birds in your neighborhood, the easier it will be to expand that knowledge as you continue your birding journey.

Want more adventures like this? Sign up for KCUR’s Creative Adventure email.

Decisions taken by the Holy Synod of the Romanian Orthodox Church

The working session of the Holy Synod of the Romanian Orthodox Church was held on Thursday, February 17, 2022, in the Great Hall “Patriarch Theoctist” of the Patriarchate Palace, under the presidency of His Beatitude Patriarch Daniel.

During the meeting, the Holy Synod approved the canonization of Venerable Theophano (Teofana) Basarab, the first known Romanian nun, with the title: Saint Theophano Basarab, as well as her inclusion in the calendar of the Romanian Orthodox Church. , with a Remembrance Day on October 28.

The Holy Synod has decided to transfer Bishop Daniil Stoenescu from the ministry of Bishop of Dacia Felix to the post of Assistant Bishop of the Diocese of Deva and Hunedoara, for health reasons, with the title of Assistant Bishop Daniil of Densuş, since he has his own residence in the territory of this diocese.

The locum tenens of the Diocese of Dacia Felix will be Patriarch Daniel of the Romanian Orthodox Church, who will be remembered at religious services held in places of worship in the Diocese of Dacia Felix as the locum tenens of the Diocese of Dacia Felix.

The Holy Synod appreciated the results of the “Meal of Joy” program, carried out by the social and philanthropic sector of the patriarchal administration in 2021. The total value of goods donated in 2021 was 3,140,866 lei (635,121 euros) .

Two hundred and twenty-two socio-philanthropic institutions of the Romanian Patriarchate have benefited from these goods and provided assistance to 19,824 people, with the number of beneficiaries constantly increasing.

The Holy Synod took note with joy of the launch of the project entitled “Eco-initiatives in the parishes of the Romanian Orthodox Church in Romania and the Republic of Moldova”, which aims to initiate environmental education and identify solutions to increase ecological responsibility in the Romanian Orthodox Church in Romania and the Republic of Moldova.

Regarding the Population and Housing Census in Romania between February 1 and July 17, 2022, the Holy Synod has approved that the Diocesan Centers in the country and abroad send the office staff the recommendation to encourage believers to fulfill this civic duty and to declare their rightful religious affiliation, in particular through self-assessment, between March 14 and May 15, 2022.

The Holy Synod particularly appreciated the socio-philanthropic activity of the dioceses, parishes, monasteries and social centers in 2021, a year marked by a pandemic.

At the beginning of the Solemn Year Consecrated to Prayer, the Holy Synod urges the faithful of the Romanian Orthodox Church, at this beginning of the Solemn Year Consecrated to Prayer (2022), to remain united around the imperative moral to help suffering people and manifest faith in the Lord Jesus Christ through prayer and acts of Christian love.

SOURCE: basilica.ro

Photograph courtesy of Basilica.ro / Mircea Florescu

The Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District celebrates its 50th anniversary


by Linda Hubbard February 18, 2022

Growing up in Menlo Park, my family home was perfectly located to view the Santa Cruz Mountains, which today are home to many reserves managed by the Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District, which is turns 50 this year. My mother, the main observer, would no doubt be surprised – and pleased – to see how the land will forever be protected from development.

Midpen was established by local voters in 1972 following a grassroots effort by community members – primarily Palo Alto resident Nonette Hanko, backed by Palo Alto Times editorials led by Jay Thorwaldson. They were concerned about the impact of rapid development and growth in the region. In 1974, Midpen made its first land purchase – 90 acres in what became Foothills Open Space Preserve.

Since then, Midpen has protected a regional greenbelt of over 65,000 acres of public open space and farmland throughout the greater Santa Cruz Mountains region. Midpen also restores the ecological health and function of the natural environment, encourages the sustainable use of agricultural land in coastal San Mateo County, and provides close access to nature for the community through programs, with nearly of 250 miles of trails in 24 free reserves and Open to the public.

“Given this abundance, newer residents of the peninsula may not realize how much intentional and hard work went into founding the open space district,” says Leigh Ann Gessner, Public Affairs Specialist by Midpen.

“When it was preserved, it was not pristine wilderness. Logging and mining had taken place as well as other uses of the land. MidPen’s goal was to restore the land’s natural functions and restore streams damaged by logging. And to create a healthy, wildfire-resistant plant community.

Leigh Ann points to the varied terrain and location of the reserves, from bay front to grasslands to mountains and says that each reserve has a story. ” There is the tafonis (photo below) in Corte Madre, for example. And while the vast majority of old growth forest has been lost, there are a few old growth stands – one is right on the trail at Bear Creek.

Several community events are planned throughout 2022, including an opportunity to explore the San Francisco Bay Trail and participate in the Bayside Family Festival on April 30 at Midpen’s Ravenswood Preserve; a coastal community celebration at Johnston Ranch near Half Moon Bay in the fall, and an opportunity to engage with Midpen’s current projects and partners at an event held at its administrative office in the summer.

Bike and dog rules vary by reservation, as do trail conditions. Midpen’s website has all the details.

Photo from the top of Bear Creek Redwood Preservesecond picture of Ravenswood Reservethird picture of Honda Creek Reserveby Frances Freyberg; cyclist in Russian crest reserve by Karl Gohl; photo of tafoni at El Corte de Madera Creek Preserve by Robb Most.

LU Environmental Organization will organize a recycling event – The Lawrentian


Lawrence University’s environmental organization will host its first-ever recycling event on Saturday, February 19. The event will take place in the Mead Witter Room at the Warch Campus Center from 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.

According to co-chair and senior Lauren Kelly of the LU Environmental Organization, the recycling event is meant to educate Lawrentians on the importance of recycling, as well as provide information on what can be recycled.

There are compost and recycling bins in every building on campus, but they are often filled with non-recyclable waste. According to Grace Subat, sustainability and special projects advisor for LU Environmental, they receive invoices weekly for contaminated recycling and plastic bags that have been placed in recycling bins.

Kelly said an event to educate Lawrence students about recycling seemed timely given that many Lawrentians want to recycle but don’t know what can be recycled and composted or what really can’t be put in the trash.

According to Kelly, the recycling event will have seven booths and will include recycling-themed games, such as a “Jeopardy!”-inspired game, a recycling toss (similar to a beanbag toss), and an artwork. of collaborative art. There will also be prizes such as reusable water bottles, towels, straws and menstrual pads, as well as recycling bins where Lawrentians can properly dispose of waste such as batteries, used electronics and plastic bags. There will also be raffle events, with prizes such as hot drink kits and plant starter kits. The event will be in person, with mandatory masks and remote activity stalls around Mead Witter.

Kelly stressed the importance of recycling at Lawrence in order to promote sustainable behavior, divert waste from the landfill and avoid landfill fines. She also spoke about the importance of doing our part to protect the environment and reusing the materials we use, such as initiatives to turn plastic bags into benches and that compost into gardens.

As part of its sustainability efforts, LU Environmental Organization has also partnered with the Big Green Box program to recycle batteries and electronics. According to Subat, proper waste management has played an important role in the sustainability movement on campus, as items that are not recycled end up in landfills or pollute waterways, which is harmful to us and for the environment.

Kelly hopes events like these will help make campus environmentalism accessible to everyone, as not everyone can afford reusable products. For example, Big Green Box battery recycling boxes cost between $36 and $65, and large electronics recycling boxes cost between $60 and $80. Since LU Environmental Organization pays for the boxes, students from lower economic backgrounds can recycle batteries and electronics without purchasing the boxes themselves.

Likewise, she said that some students come from places that don’t have good recycling programs and stressed the importance of education on recycling and composting.

“We have more power to change the way things are done here than outside of Lawrence,” Kelly said, “and all of that matters in a way!”

Letter to the Editor: Keep Old City Park Quiet | Opinion


I learned a few days ago of the city’s plan to build pickleball courts at Old City Park. I’m bothered by this choice not because of the game itself, but because OCP is one of the few quiet, low-traffic oases available to Moab residents. Pickleball is loud and growing fast, indeed my dad – who chooses to live in a big, loud metropolitan area – likes to play, but he wouldn’t choose to have courts at OCP. Here he is having a good time with his grandson. It’s not just the noise of the actual game, but also the noise and pollution from the extra traffic.

I love taking my toddler there to play with other kids, play in the water, dance, play in the playground, watch the wildlife that lives in the pond. I see many others coming for similar reasons. When Robin and I go to other parks he tells me that “it’s too much mom”. It has 2 1/2.

This would be a great detriment to the quality of serenity and peace present at Old Town Park, the only park in Moab that maintains this quality. While I support existing pickleball courts in a location in town, such as Spanish Valley Arena, where there is already a lot of concrete and other ambient noise, that location is NOT Old Town Park. Humanity has shown time and time again that it is easy to remove calm and tranquility, and we have shown that it is nearly impossible to restore it. Please keep OCP quiet and precious. A safe and quiet space for the people of this town and the birds and other wildlife that inhabit it.

Thank you.

Rebecca “Inder” Broughton Coppola


Mid-Ohio Valley Master Naturalists Come Back to Life in March | News, Sports, Jobs


PARKERSBURG — The Mid-Ohio Valley Master Naturalists will begin their 10th season on March 12.

Meeting monthly at the Ohio River Islands National Wildlife Refuge, North Bend State Park, and nature preserves in and around West Virginia, 64 hours of workshops will involve experts from the Division of Natural Resources of West Virginia, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, and experts teaching about West Virginia’s plants, animals, and landscapes through field trips and classroom workshops.

Topics include mammals, geology, birds, nature sketches, trees, insects, fungi, fish and more.

All ages, 16+ and all levels of physical ability are welcome.

Among the experts will be Jason White, a local scientist and naturalist with years of internship and volunteering for the Ohio River Islands National Wildlife Refuge, who will lead a fish workshop.

Jim Fregonara, an instructor with the Division of Natural Resources, will teach a course on reptiles and amphibians with lots of hands-on material and living creatures.

Michael Schramm with the Wildlife Refuge and an amazing birder, will teach a unit on birds.

Among the popular events on the program is a day at the Jay and Cindy Burkhart farm on April 23. Participants will discover approximately 80 species of wildflowers and explore ponds and streams for aquatic life.

The mission of the program is to provide sufficiently in-depth exposure to the natural history of Appalachia that students have a basic knowledge of the ecology and wildlife of our region.

By the time a person has completed the program, they will be ready to lead nature walks and introductory classes for adults and children and can continue to learn each year by attending new workshops and any others they wish to see again.

Participants are required to complete 48 hours of core credit and 16 hours of electives. The cost is $125 and can be paid in five monthly installments.

Fees cover the Natural Resources Division manual, speakers’ allowances, and some administrative costs. Participation in the program can last indefinitely as many people take two years to complete the program.

In addition to course work, participants must complete 30 hours of volunteer work to obtain a certificate from the Division of Natural Resources. Volunteer opportunities include monitoring bluebird nest boxes, planting and maintaining pollinator gardens, and volunteering in environmental education programs.

For more information, contact Emily Grafton, [email protected] or 304-906-7846.

Today’s breaking news and more to your inbox

NEA/ARPA Grant Supports Organization for Poets with Disabilities Co-Founded by NMSU Professor


Newsletter Report

As part of the American Rescue Plan, Zoeglossia, “a community of disabled poets” co-founded by a New Mexico State University professor, will receive a $50,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Arts.

“This is the first time that a portion of the Covid emergency funding has provided grants to distribute to arts organizations,” said Zoeglossia co-founder Connie Voisine, who is a published poet and English teacher at the University. NMSU College of Arts and Sciences. “It’s a recognition that the arts are an important part of our economy.

The grant is part of a $57.7 million effort to help the U.S. arts and culture sector recover from the impact of the global pandemic, NMSU said in a press release. Zoeglossia is one of 567 local arts organizations receiving grants.

Zoeglossia was founded by Voisine and fellow poets Jennifer Bartlett and Sheila Black “as an emerging literary organization dedicated to providing an inclusive space for poets who identify as disabled through an annual literary retreat,” the statement said. Press.

Zoeglossia’s third annual retreat, hosted virtually through a partnership with NMSU, will be held May 11-15.

“If you are a writer over the age of 21 who identifies as having a disability, and especially if you are from historically underrepresented communities, please apply,” Voisine said. “We would really like to see your work.”

The NEA grant will provide support to help the organization develop a structure and staff to continue its work promoting the work of Zoeglossia scholars, develop a social media strategy that effectively promotes voices with disabilities in cultural spaces, and develop content video or a “Zoeglossia channel” that provides an accessible video platform for poets and writers with disabilities, NMSU said.

Voisine is the author of “The Bower” and “And God Created Women”. Her work was a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Award and won the Associated Writing Program in Poetry award, according to the Zoeglossa website. She has poems published in The New Yorker, Poetry Magazine and elsewhere. Voisine is a former Fulbright Scholar at Queens University in Belfast, Northern Ireland.

Visit www.zoeglossie.org.

City of Charlotte to close Eastland skate park on March 3 – WSOC TV


CHARLOTTE — A beloved skate park in Charlotte will close for good in a few weeks. The City of Charlotte has informed Charlotte City Council members that the Eastland DIY SkatePark will be closing on March 3 to prepare the ground for redevelopment. The skate park, located east of Charlotte, has been considered an oasis and sanctuary where skaters of all ages and skill levels hang out regularly.

[PAST COVERAGE: City Council approves 3 major projects that will change future of Charlotte]

“Yeah, there’s definitely blood and sweat and tears here,” Stephen Barrett said. “It’s kind of like a family.”

If anyone knows, it would be Barrett. He and six other friends built the skatepark in 2015.

Since then, there have been so many memories created and successful tricks that it is impossible to count them. Even though he knows that day is coming, that doesn’t make the news any easier to handle.

“I just don’t see why something that’s so good and such a great community for people coming out of here, isn’t accepted into the plans for what they’re doing,” he said. .

The skate park is another victim of development in a city full of them. Skateboards were replaced by the wheels and tracks of bulldozers to make way for massive new development.

[PAST COVERAGE: Eastland groundbreaking set for early 2022, city leadership says]

“That’s really all the skaters have in Charlotte,” Ali Mugala said. “Charlotte doesn’t really like building us anything and every time we get something it gets taken down pretty quickly.”

There are not many other skateparks. Skaters prefer Eastland due to its size and location. Naomi Drenan’s skate park requires full body protection and helmets.

“I’m going to miss coming with my friends and skating in the nice weather,” said Noah Totty. “It’s so sad to see it all go away.”

The rides will continue at Eastland for a few more weeks, but Barrett doesn’t know what’s next.

“I would like to say that there is something we can do to save it and prevent it from happening, but if the city sold the property to someone, it is their property now,” a- he declared.


This land may soon look different, but skaters say it won’t replace what’s already there.

“If they want to talk culture, it’s culture,” Barrett said. “It’s a really big mix of cultures coming together to support one thing, which is skateboarding.”

Mecklenburg County oversees parks and recreation.

A county spokesperson said the county is aware there is a need for more skatepark amenities throughout the system. Mecklenburg County is working on its next capital improvement plan for fiscal years 24-28 and a spokesperson said the county will consider adding this equipment to other parks where possible. There is a renovation project for the Naomi Drenan Rec Center which may include renovations to the Grayson SkatePark depending on the budget. A skate park component was also included in the master plan for Bryant Park and Clarks Creek Park.

A limited amount of park space has been set aside for the new Eastland development, but its uses have not been finalized.

(Watch the video below: Keith Hufnagel, skateboarding legend, dead at 46)

For the Love of Critters

Newnan resident Lawrence W. Reed is Chairman Emeritus of the Foundation for Economic Education. His most recent book is “Was Jesus a Socialist?” He can be contacted at [email protected]

If you’re an animal lover like me, you know there’s a lot more to love about animals besides the fact that some of them are tasty.

“Animals are such agreeable friends,” wrote the English poet and novelist George Eliot. “They don’t ask any questions, they don’t criticize.” With a grizzly bearing down on you at 30 mph, you’d think differently, but that’s pretty exceptional.

Yes, we eat them, and sometimes they eat us. But the way animals enrich our lives can be appreciated even by vegetarians (derived from Latin, meaning “bad hunter”).

From guide dogs to monkeys trained to detect seizures in humans, animals play an important role in occupational therapy, speech therapy and physical rehabilitation. Doctors from the National Center for Health Research tout studies showing that “people who have pets have healthier hearts, stay home sick less, have fewer doctor visits, exercise more and are less depressed. Pets still reduce anxiety and blood pressure, at least most of the time. They help us laugh, love and learn.

Animals provide us with milk for nutrition and hair and wool for clothing. They are an indispensable source of certain medicines and vitamins. When they are not eating our crops, they are fertilizing, cultivating or pollinating them.

Although animals have no “rights” in the human sense, good people reject wanton cruelty and unnecessary killing. Parents miss a teaching opportunity when they don’t teach their children about respect for animals, which can lead to a lack of respect for life in general.

Proverbs 12:10 tells us, “The righteous care about the needs of their animals, but the kindest acts of the wicked are cruel.”

I am grateful to Newnan Times-Herald to highlight a protected dog or cat each week who needs a good home, and equally grateful to the good people who provide those homes.

A world without animals – even ones you wouldn’t want to dine with – is simply unthinkable.


Speaking of animals, they’ll be the focus of the Newnan Carnegie Library Foundation’s upcoming Lunch & Learn program on Friday, February 25. Doors open at 11:30 a.m. The program begins at noon and is free with online registration at newnancarnegie.com/nclf .

Norma Lewis and Bobbie Laminack of the Bear Creek Nature Center in nearby Chattahoochee Hills will speak “What you can do for wildlife.”

The goal of the Bear Creek Nature Center is to teach people of all ages about our environment in the hopes that they will cultivate personal awareness, appreciation, and participation in the local ecosystem. Both environmental education veterans, Lewis and Laminack will bring some of the live animals the Center cares for, including a python, if it’s not busy that day. They will talk about how and why these creatures came to live at the Center and what you can do to improve habitat for native wildlife in your own corner of our amazing world.

Attendees are welcome to bring their own lunch to the event or, by special arrangement with Oink Joint, you can pick one up for less than $10.


(Lawrence W. Reed, a resident of Newnan, is chairman emeritus of the Foundation for Economic Education. His most recent book is “Was Jesus a Socialist?” [email protected].)

The OU’s equestrian organizations offer their members experience, friendships


At Ohio University, there are several niche student organizations and clubs that pique the diverse interests of students. For students interested in horses and equestrian pursuits, there are two organizations at OU that demonstrate this hobby: the OU Western Equestrian Team and the OU Hunt Seat Equestrian Team.

The Hunt Seat Equestrian Team is a team of the Interuniversity Equestrian Competition Association, or IHSA, which focuses on participation in various competitions and community service near Athens.

Emma Boczulak, a freshman studying wildlife and conservation biology, started riding horses when she was 3 years old. As Boczulak never had a horse of her own, she said it was beneficial to her experience in Hunt Seat team competitions.

“We compete on the other college’s horses, so when you compete it’s a horse you’ve never ridden before and you’ve never met,” Boczulak said. “So that’s something I did growing up because I never had my own horse.”

OU’s Western Equestrian Team focuses on Western-based riding and lesson opportunities. Team horses are accessible through their partnership with Hocking College, which allows members to get lessons and ride locally. During their ISHA shows, the Western Equestrian Team uses a tactic similar to Team Hunt Seat, as their riders select names from a hat and show off the chosen horse without any prior practice.

Alyssa Wilson, a senior bioscience student, said this strategy can add an extra layer of difficulty to competitions.

“In the past, I have ridden horses that had just been mine; I’ve been practicing for years,” Wilson said. “So riding a horse that (you) don’t even know adds a bit to the equation, (and it) levels the playing field. But it’s fun that way just to see what you’re going to get.

Emma Tremblay, a junior biology student and member of both organizations, said the COVID-19 pandemic had a big impact on the number of members in each of the groups.

“It’s been hard to recruit, so our team has shrunk,” said Tremblay. “But we’re pretty much back to training, and we’re back to the shows, and everything else is as normal as it gets right now.”

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Wilson said the Western Equestrian Team has been engaged for most of the past year. This waste of time, Wilson said, has drastically reduced opportunities to take lessons, ride and show.

“Unfortunately, for a senior like me, it prevented a year from possibly moving to another level,” Wilson said. “But we adapted and we kept the club together, which is a really good thing. We persevered.”

Despite the difficulty of recruiting and returning in person after a year in line, Wilson said his team had shown determination and persistence in their abilities.

“I love seeing the new members coming in and their enthusiasm for the club,” Wilson said. “They were a little hesitant at first…but I’ve definitely seen them become more confident. They put their heart and soul into this club. I love seeing how much of a team they are.

For Boczulak, while the bond she shares with her teammates is important to her, she said her favorite part of the club is still what’s at the heart of it all: the horses.

“I really like having a group of friends who all like to do the same thing I do,” Boczulak said. “But horses have always been the reason I’m in it. I would rather be surrounded by horses than ride horses any day. I think being able to rub shoulders with so many amazing horses every day is the best.

For students interested in joining one of the OU’s equestrian teams and participating in future lessons and competitions, the respective managers can be contacted via Bobcat Connect.


[email protected]

Mankato teacher joins international experts in Antarctica

MANKATO, Minn. (AP) — Julia Battern, professor of wildlife biology and ecology at Mankato East High School, will embark on a learning expedition to Antarctica in mid-March.

During her two-week experience on the frozen continent, she will reflect with an international group of teachers, scientists and representatives of energy companies.

The opportunity is just what she needs to effectively share her passion for environmental education, Battern said.

Much of his time will be spent attending seminars aboard a ship moored in the waters of a peninsula. The group will venture off her decks for short research tours, the Mankato Free Press reported.

Her love of outdoor adventure has often taken her to the wilderness of Boundary Waters in northern Minnesota, but so far never to a remote location thousands of miles from her home.

“I know I have to pack things to help me stay warm and stay dry. Being a Minnesotan, I have most of the basics,” Battern said.

His trip is sponsored by Onward Energy. She won the energy company’s 2021 competition which selected a Mankato-based community educator and a Mankato-based Onward employee to participate in an Antarctic experiment.

The expedition’s host, the 2041 Foundation, is on a mission to engage businesses and communities in climate science, personal leadership and the promotion of sustainable practices.

In 1959 a treaty was signed which included a moratorium on mining or exploitation in Antarctica. This treaty must be reviewed in 2041.

Onward Energy’s Michael Innes, the company’s local plant operations manager, will also be on the trip in March. He sees the expedition as a chance to transfer information and will share how his company is working to reduce emissions and provide clean energy.

“My role will be to collaborate with others. We will communicate about what we can do together to slow this change,” Innes said, referring to global warming.

A naval veteran, he may prove to be the most seaworthy of the entrants; however, he never sailed near icebergs.

“My time was spent in the Persian Gulf,” Innes said.

Innes recently received notice of changes to the trip’s itinerary, prompted by news of a new strain of coronavirus.

“The foundation had to make some changes,” he said. “We will have to be sequestered in Argentina for a while before going to Antarctica.”

His company plans to provide expedition updates on its website throughout the trip. Onward Energy will also cover the expenses of the substitute teacher who will replace Battern during her absence.

Not only will the girls’ basketball teacher and coach be out of her class, but she’ll be spending time away from her husband and their 3-year-old, who knows what a penguin is but has no no idea how far his mother has traveled. .

“We try to explain it by showing him a three-dimensional globe,” Battern said.

Before leaving on the trip, Battern also plans to offer a basic physics lesson to a 5-year-old neighbor who shares his worries.

“He thinks I’m going to spend too much time upside down.”

Battern has described in emails how she is looking forward to building new relationships with fellow expedition participants and looking forward to gaining a more holistic perspective on climate change impacts and solutions.

After returning home, she will share her experiences with the Mankato community.

“The ultimate goal of this voyage and of the 2041 Foundation is the preservation of Antarctica,” Battern wrote.

The founder of the 2041 Foundation, polar explorer Robert Swan, was the first person to walk unaided to the North and South Poles.

“My role in all of this is to bring this Antarctica story to the Mankato community, while sparking conversations about what sustainability and conservation look like in our own lives and in southern Minnesota,” said Battery. “It may seem surprising that the decisions we make in Minnesota can have significant impacts thousands of miles away, but that’s exactly the history and the science we’re trying to bring to light.”

She said the timing for this opportunity was perfect. “…We are currently in the process of implementing new Minnesota Science Standards (K-12). These standards place a strong emphasis on understanding Earth systems and promote environmental awareness…My aim is to build interdisciplinary units around this experience that can become part of our scientific program.

Kris Sack of St. Peter will also be stationed in Antarctica in March. She recently began her third year as a Flight Operations Specialist at McMurdo Research Station. Although she and Battern have not met, they no doubt share an interest in combating the effects of climate change on Antarctica.

“As a teacher, Ms. Battern is an ideal ambassador. His experiences will help foster a sense of global responsibility and adventure in the generations who will be most affected by the expiration of the Antarctic Treaty. This may be his first adventure with ‘The Ice’ but I doubt it will be his last,” Sack said in an email message from McMurdo.

Julie Reed of the Biosimilars Forum shares her key goals for the organization in her new role


Improving access and pushing through major legislative changes for biosimilars are just a few of the many plans that Julie M. Reed, the new Executive Director of the Biosimilars Forum, has for the organization.


What do you hope to accomplish for the Biosimilars Forum and the biosimilars industry in your new position as Executive Director?

Reed: This position is such an honor. I was chosen and invited to represent the industry in the United States. And the Biosimilars Forum is the leading voice of the biosimilars industry. It is the only trade association that focuses solely on biosimilars and we are the go-to for policymakers and regulators and anyone interested in biosimilars. So, for me, it’s an honor. Our members are diverse, they are the leaders of biosimilars in the world. They have the biggest portfolios, the most biosimilars in development. So, it’s an incredible honor for me.

I think with our Board of Directors, our goal continues to be to increase the uptake of biosimilars in the United States. And we have a long way to go and there are a number of things that need to keep progressing and happening. The first is access. We need better access and greater uptake of biosimilars. It’s interesting, when you think that biosimilars are cheaper, but uptake is low, and CMS has to decide whether or not they can cover expensive new drugs and innovations, like Alzheimer’s drugs. , or decisions where we talk about price trading policies. And here we have a biosimilar on the shelf and we’re like, “Guys, you’ve got the solution here. Just use them. Use them more! Facilitate, encourage the use of biosimilars.” And you did that, the savings paper. It was between 38 and 120 billion dollars and in 5 years, it is consistent with all the economic papers. It’s as if lower cost biosimilars and higher utilization lead to savings. And it’s an amazing solution that needs support.

So that’s one of our biggest things. We know from our global experience that policymakers and payers need to encourage the use of biosimilars early on because people are reluctant to switch. So let’s go and we’ll work with our stakeholders and decision makers to continue to proactively push for incentives to change the market. To achieve cost savings, we need a change in behavior.

The other element is to follow through on President Biden’s executive order. We continue to work with HHS and call on them to implement policies, like shared savings or $0 co-payments and things like that, that they can do now and follow to be proactive about presidential decrees for biosimilars. Again, we have a readily available solution to reduce costs. It is competition in the free market. We need our stakeholders and our ecosystem to support it. So this is one of the access rooms.

Outside of government, we seek and continue to work with our payers, private and commercial payers, to ensure and demand forms of equal or equal access to all biosimilars. Exclusive agreements discourage patient choice, physician choice, competition from biosimilars, and the stronger the competition, the lower the prices. So we’d like to see our payer community embrace every biosimilar on the market and put them all on their formularies, not just 1. So that’s a piece.

Next, we offer user fees. Next week will start the third round of BsUFA [Biosimilar User Fee Amendments of 2017], BsUFA III. And so the hearings start next week, but really having a strong, robust biosimilars program from the FDA is key, of course, for our industry and for our members. So making sure the FDA has adequate resources, has the ability to focus on biosimilars, has the ability to do inspections even during a pandemic. They have some great ideas, but we’d like the FDA to implement them because delay in inspection means delay in approval. So we need the agency to look into that.

But we’re also excited about user fees because one of the key user fee initiatives will be a regulatory science program. And this is important for our members because as you know, next year we will see the first adalimumab (that word that kills me) but the first Humira [adalimumab] biosimilars coming to market. And so the agency’s regulatory science agenda is critical to us and we want to see great progress in this area, it will be agency industry that will dialogue and create new policies and processes to move forward and evolve this science in the development of biosimilars. I’ll date myself, but we’re almost 20, over 15, in biosimilars. I think I was at Hospira in 2008 when we launched Retacrit [epoetin alfa-epbx; referencing Epogen/Procrit]. Thus, the science and requirements for the development of a biosimilar have evolved.

We want to make sure that we are also evolving in the United States. Our regulatory science program will help define interchangeability. It’s confusing. And so we want to move forward on that, but also move forward on how we can evolve the science and evolve the development requirements, because if we can reduce the development requirements, we’re going to reduce the cost of development and so biosimilars will be at even lower costs when they come to market.

We will continue to work on misinformation. We continue to see misinformation about biosimilars and are constantly monitoring this at the Forum. And we work very closely with the FDA and the FTC, after our workshop, to make sure that if we see something, they are aware of it, because we think it is very important for patients, doctors and consumers. not to have false information about biosimilars. They should all know that they are safe, high quality and FDA approved. We don’t want to scare. And then we’ll continue to work on all the barriers to access and things like that. So, it’s exciting, to be here from the beginning, to be here now in this new role, it’s just, I’m very excited about it.

A woman died after a van crash in Hover Park, Finley, WA


A woman died after her friends begged her not to get in a van at Hover Park in Finley early Saturday morning, according to the Benton County Sheriff‘s Office.

Jacob M. Reed of Iowa was spinning the tires of a Ford F250 and driving back and forth on Toothaker Road around 1 a.m., according to reports from the sheriff’s office.

Still, the woman, whose name and age were not immediately available, got into the pickup with Reed and it took off at high speed toward South Meals Road.

The truck slid sideways as its tires spun, going off the road near the train tracks. He went into a ditch and rolled over, the sheriff’s office’s Facebook post said.

Neither Reed nor the deceased woman were wearing seat belts, they said.

Reed was taken to Trios Health Southridge Hospital and then airlifted to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle with serious injuries.

This story was originally published February 12, 2022 11:31 a.m.

Related stories from the Tri-City Herald

Senior Writer Annette Cary covers Hanford, energy, environment, science and health for the Tri-City Herald. She was a journalist for over 30 years in the Pacific Northwest.

Strengthening participatory organization launched a campaign

Strengthening Participatory Organization (SPO) launched a campaign on Lahore and our responsibilities.

According to SPO, issues such as the environment, smoke, water pollution and sanitation are an integral part of the campaign. SPO promotes young people from universities through their social action projects and they will play their part to clean up and green Lahore. About 70 percent of Pakistan’s people depend directly or indirectly on groundwater for their livelihoods, the Participatory Strengthening Organization said.

According to Shahnawaz Khan, regional coordinator, more than 60% of the population of Pakistan does not have access to drinking water. The people of Lahore depend on groundwater, unfortunately the groundwater has become polluted. The issue of groundwater is multiple and complex in its nature. He said the groundwater level has dropped to 100 feet. He added that salt water was included in table water due to unplanned pumping. According to him, the Ravi River was only a natural aquifer but it stays dry almost all year round except during the monsoon season. He further added that natural recharge of underground aquifers is almost negligible due to construction activities and road and street paving.

In addition, untreated water had been discharged into the Ravi River, polluting it. He said that solid waste factories contribute a lot to water pollution, the government must take note and these factories should be dumped outside Lahore in landfills. The color of the water has become yellowish and fragrant. He said heavy metals were also found in groundwater samples and the concentration of lead (Pb), nickel (Ni) and a number of levels of E. coli exceeded authorized drinking water quality limits. He said that Lahore is a hub of industrial activities and its groundwater has become polluted. He said a wide range of pollutants generated by natural and human activities contribute to groundwater degradation in the region. Groundwater extraction is increasing as the population grows and overexploitation of the aquifer leads to lower groundwater levels

The regional coordinator added that the metropolitan city in Punjab province is choking with smog, caused in part by smoke from brick kilns and steel mills, burning rice stubble and garbage, growing number of vehicles on the road and large-scale tree losses. as the expanding city makes way for new roads and buildings. Air pollution has increased in the city and could be controlled by reducing vehicles on the roads. He presented a solution that civil servants should use public vehicles and students in schools, colleges and universities should use public transport. He also suggested that in private offices, a pooling system should be adopted to reduce air pollution.

Shahnawaz said sometimes heaps of garbage appeared on the city’s roads. It must be discouraged and requires prompt action. According to him, metropolitan cities should be clean and green all the time. Sanitary workers have to carry garbage everywhere they see, moreover, citizens have to play their part to clean up the city. Citizens of Lahore should not litter the streets. Garbage must be deposited in places set by the government. After that, it has to be taken to dumps.

He said as the world has become technologically advanced, we should learn from their experiences. Electricity could be generated using garbage. He added that it was found that uncollected garbage had been scattered on the roads, especially in popular and medium-sized localities. Garbage was also observed in commercial and residential communities. He said that Lahore Waste Management Company is doing its best to transport garbage and make Lahore clean, but there is a need to strengthen its role and vigilance.

Punjab Environmental Protection Minister Bao Muhammad Rizwan said collective efforts must be made to eradicate the growing problem of environmental degradation. Therefore, there is a need to create awareness at the local level. He said the department recommended giving environmental education to students up to 5th grade and integrating 20 points for higher education students, which contribute to pollution eradication. Professor Dr. Sajid Rashid, Senior College of Earth and Environmental Sciences, PU warned that environmental pollution will be a serious challenge in the next decade, so there is a need to ban the use of plastic bags.

Ex-DRX LCK coach sues organization for wrongful termination


Former DRX LCK coach Jeong-soo “Kim” Kim is suing the organization for wrongful termination.

After a bad start to the split, Coach Kim was fired from DRX seemingly suddenly. After his dismissal from the organization, contextual clues seemed to indicate that there was more to this dismissal than internal synergy issues.

Why was the DRX LCK coach fired?

Coach Kim’s sacking came after DRX’s disappointing 0-3 start to the 2022 LCK Division. players had no problem with Kim and would prefer him to return to the team. The revelation was surprising given mid-term coaching changes are often the result of internal dynamic issues, but the team captain said he had no problem with the former manager.

This revelation implied that the decision was made by management higher up in DRX rather than the team itself. Kim offered to share the details surrounding her firing if DRX allowed her to speak.

DRX did not publicly respond to Kim’s request to speak openly about his experience, but instead held a press conference which brought accusations of inappropriate behavior on Kim’s part. According to the statement made by general manager Byeong-hoon “ccCarter” Choi, Kim failed to meet the obligations outlined in his contract, missed meetings and exhibited unacceptable, although unspecified, behavior during matches. team.

Kim’s agency, Shadow Corporation, announced that the former DRX LCK coach will seek legal redress for his dismissal, which they said was unfair. Kim acknowledged that he may have had some shortcomings as a coach, but cited DRX’s LCK Championship as proof of his ability as a member of the coaching staff.

A message translating the announcement drew the attention of the English-speaking community to Redditwith many fans unsure which side to descend on.

The issue will still take some time to resolve, as court proceedings can take anywhere from several months to several years, depending on the extent of the dispute.

DEC Announces Opening of West New York Segment of Statewide Birdwatching Trail


New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Basil Seggos today announced the grand opening of the Greater Niagara segment of the New York State Birdwatching Trail. New York City to highlight the state’s world-class, high-profile birding opportunities. The Greater Niagara segment includes 36 locations in Erie, Genesee, Niagara, Orleans and Wyoming counties, offering a variety of quality birding experiences for New Yorkers and visitors .

“The state’s birding community continues to grow, and Governor Kathy Hochul understands how important it is to encourage all New Yorkers to connect with nature close to home and in special places like the Buffalo Harbor State Park and DEC’s Reinstein Woods,” said DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos. “DEC is proud to announce today the official opening of the Greater Niagara segment of New York’s Statewide Birding Trail with our partners at State Parks and I LOVE NY. The new Western New York segment of the statewide birding trail, one of many segments across the state, builds on our ongoing efforts to remove barriers to bird watching and encouraging people to go out.

Birdwatching has quickly become one of New York’s fastest growing recreational activities. The New York State Birding Trail is managed by the DEC in conjunction with partners including the Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation. The statewide trail includes a network of promoted birding sites accessible by car or public transportation, providing an inclusive experience for all visitors to enjoy birding in a beautiful natural setting with little or no costs or investment in equipment.

State Parks Commissioner Erik Kulleseid said, “With the growing popularity of birding programs and events across the state, the opening of the Greater Niagara segment of the Birding Trail of New York State provides another resource for accessing and exploring the rich natural habitats of Western New York State for meaningful purposes. and unique birds. I’m thrilled that this new segment is introducing more New Yorkers to the opportunity to take part in this joyful activity and highlight the incredible birding spots offered in state parks.

Empire State Vice President of Development and Executive Director of Tourism, Ross D. Levi, said, “The Greater Niagara Birdwatching Trail segment is the new reason for outdoor enthusiasts in the ‘state, nation and world to plan a visit and be part of everyone there. is to love on a Western New York getaway. As more travelers seek new and enjoyable ways to experience the outdoors, I LOVE NY is excited to promote the Birdwatching Trail to potential visitors around the world.

Mike Burger, executive director of Audubon’s Connecticut and New York State office, said, “Looking at the list of 36 locations on the new Greater Niagara segment of the New York Birding Trail, it’s clear that this will be a fantastic resource for anyone living in or visiting Western New York. I’m especially pleased to see several places listed where we’ve worked with state agencies to improve and restore bird habitat, such as Buckhorn Island, Joseph Davis, and Knox Farm State Parks. So much hard work has gone into these sites to make them a healthy habitat for birds and other wildlife, it’s wonderful that more people can enjoy them.

Western New York Land Conservancy Deputy Executive Director Jajean Rose-Burney said, The Western New York Land Conservancy is thrilled that several of our nature preserves are part of the New York State Birding Trail. This will help showcase the incredible diversity of bird life in our nature reserves that so many in the community have protected.

Ed Sirianno, Executive Director of the Buffalo Audubon Society, said, “The Buffalo Audubon Society is proud to support the opening of the second segment of the New York State Birding Trail. With over 1,000 acres of nature preserves here in Western New York, Buffalo Audubon members are passionate about caring for the birds, wildlife, and places they need. We are thrilled to add our efforts to this worthy cause and believe the Birding Trail will raise awareness of the beauty and importance that birds bring to our delicate ecosystem.

Feminist Bird Club of Buffalo co-chair Molly Dreyer said, “We are pleased that the New York State Bird Trail is creating a network of birding hotspots, particularly in the Greater Niagara. We hope this will raise awareness of birding opportunities while expanding access for all nature lovers across the state.

Marcus Rosten, Buffalo Area Naturalist, Environmental Educator and Ornithological Society Board Member, said, “The Greater Niagara Region is one of the best places in the world for birdwatching and I am thrilled that the trail birding doesn’t just include some of the best spots. to look for birds in the area, but also includes sites that are easily accessible and accessible to new birders. This trail will help remove some of the obstacles faced by those new to the business by pointing them in the right direction and guiding them in what to look for. The diversity of trail locations means that anyone from downtown Buffalo to the Lake Ontario shoreline to rural Wyoming County can easily find a great birding spot closest to home. him !

The Greater Niagara segment of the trail includes 36 locations on a mix of public and private lands in Erie, Genesee, Niagara, Orleans, and Wyoming counties. From the impressive Niagara River Corridor, part of a National Audubon Society-designated Globally Significant Migratory Bird Area, to the 292 acres of forests, ponds and wetlands of the Reinstein Woods, the Greater Niagara region offers multiple opportunities to observe migratory birds. In the summer and fall, visitors can take the Discover Niagara Shuttle to Fort Niagara State Park, Stella Niagara Preserve, ArtPark, and several locations along the Niagara River Corridor. Visit the Tifft Nature Preserve and Buffalo Harbor State Park at the south end of the Niagara River to take in views of Lake Erie and spot more than 200 species of birds. Knox Farm State Park is a prime destination for grassland birds and hosts an exhibit of bluebird nest boxes.

Today’s announcement complements the 2022 Birds on the Niagara (BON) International Festival, a winter celebration of birds, to be held February 10-12. BON celebrates birds and highlights the importance of the International Niagara River Corridor in protecting the flyway’s ecology and habitat. Winter is a good time to see some species of birds, including passerines, woodpeckers, owls and eagles. Wintering eagles arrive in December with peak concentrations in January and February. Bird colonies flock to the Niagara River when nearby lakes freeze over, making it easy to see these birds. Additionally, Tundra Swans can be spotted along the river, as well as thousands of ducks and gulls.

New segments of the Birding Trail are opened in a progressive approach. DEC announced the New York City Trails Segment in October 2021, which includes 33 locations across all five boroughs. When completed, the Statewide Birding Trail will provide birding opportunities for everyone, regardless of age, ability, identity or background, throughout New York State.

To promote the trail as an inclusive experience for everyone, CED and its partners are working to select sites that are welcoming and accessible by public transit. DEC also continues to seek input from a wide range of New Yorkers and organizations that represent Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC) communities and makes information available in English and Spanish. Birdwatching walks will be organized in collaboration with organizations working with BIPOC communities.

The New York State Bird Trail Map is available at www.ibirdny.org and provides valuable information about each site such as location, amenities available, species likely to be seen, directions, etc Additional birding, educational and interpretive information is also available. Digital information on the Birding Trail will be updated periodically, so budding outdoor enthusiasts are encouraged to return often.

In addition to state-owned and state-run sites for the Bird Trail, government and privately run sites can follow a simple self-nomination process to be considered for inclusion on the trail. . The sites all meet the criteria to ensure a positive experience for visitors statewide. In addition, each site will post signage indicating that it is an official location on the birding trail. For more information on the nomination process, see www.ibirdny.org.

DEC encourages birding enthusiasts to visit I Bird NY for more information on where and how to bird watch, upcoming bird walks, a downloadable beginner’s guide to birding (available in Spanish), and additional resources.

DEC manages and oversees nearly five million acres of public lands and conservation easements and plays a vital role in both protecting New York’s natural resources and providing people with opportunities to enjoy the outdoors. Fishing on scenic streams, hiking and rock climbing, swimming and boating, bird watching and nature study, or just relaxing in a tent under the stars , the adventures are endless. Visit http://www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/, connect with us on Facebook, or follow us on Instagram and Twitter.

Get the latest headlines delivered to your inbox every morning? Sign up for our morning edition to start your day. FL1 on the way! Download the free FingerLakes1.com app to Android (all Android devices) Where iOS (iPhone, iPad).

Park City Council to re-engage with arts and culture district and tackle ‘legacy issues’ in coming months


After two days of discussions on everything from affordable housing to water conservation, the Park City Council will now delve into each of these issues individually.

It was decided on Thursday that after this week’s surface discussions, the board will schedule in-depth working sessions on a number of topics over the next four months.

Beginning March 3, the board will hold a two-hour working session on its vision and priorities for 2022. Vision 2020 was the guiding document used by the last board, but the majority of this work was done before the coronavirus pandemic. COVID-19. Three councilors are also new to their duties.

City manager Matt Dias was asked if what he heard from council this week would take the city in a radically different direction. He said that while it’s clear this council wants to look at things from a new perspective, he’s also heard a strong desire to continue working on what he called “legacy issues” – like housing and transportation.

“You want to step back, you want to understand the story, you want to understand the context, you want to assess the decisions,” Dias said. “You don’t come up with the excuse that something was done wrong or they weren’t evaluated, but you want to look at it with new eyes and fresh eyes, but there’s a certain opportunity in the work that you want to do here, and we’re at an inflection point with some of our challenges in the community.”

After working sessions on housing and transport, the council will also revisit one of the city’s most controversial projects in recent years: the arts and culture district.

The city owns the five-acre parcel of land at the corner of Kearns Boulevard and Bonanza Drive and had planned to build an ambitious arts and culture center on the site, complete with transit infrastructure and a significant number affordable housing units.

After initial estimates pegged the project at around $45 million, soaring construction costs amid the pandemic saw projections of up to $100 million, not including the $19.5 million that the city ​​paid for the land in 2017.

Plans were eventually whittled down to around $65 million last summer, but community outrage over a now-abandoned plan for a place to store mining-stained soil from the construction site finally put the out of the way arts and culture district.

Councilor Becca Gerber encouraged her fellow councilors to see the benefits of the land, especially since a funding mechanism was put in place through the city’s transitional housing tax in 2017 to help pay the costs.

“I would ask that instead of focusing on this as an issue, we make sure we recognize the opportunity we have in front of us to do something really wonderful and great for our community and not nickel and dime every aspect of it when we have a funding source dedicated to it,” she said. “Hopefully we can move forward in future discussions and talk about opportunities.

Plans for the Arts and Culture Quarter included housing and transport, but the council said it would reconsider those aspects of the project as well.

The Kimball Arts Center and Sundance Institute also intended to build a new headquarters at the arts and culture site, signing letters of intent with the city in 2017. But the pandemic plunged the industry artistic in turmoil and both organizations have also undergone leadership changes, casting doubt. on these intentions.

Mayor Nann Worel told council she wanted to see where these organizations are at before taking another photo of the arts and culture district.

“We’re hoping those conversations can start in March, because we have to go back to our partners and say, ‘Where are you at? Is this the vision for which you signed a letter of intent in 2017? Your organization is very different today, so is that still a direction you want to be a part of?” Worel said. “If they’re still all on board, we’ve committed to them to sell them land and build their homes there.

A working session on the arts and culture district is scheduled for April 7.

Two elected to the National Academy of Engineering

Two professors from the University of California at Davis have been elected members of the National Academy of Engineering. Professors Kate Scow and Daniel Sperling join 13 other current UC Davis faculty members who are part of the academy. (See the list here.)

Election to the NAE is one of the highest professional honors bestowed on an engineer. Members are selected for their outstanding contributions to the field of engineering, including research, practice, or education, as well as to new and developing fields of technology or innovative approaches to engineering education. engineering.

Kate Scow, professor emeritus at UC Davis.

Kate Scow is Emeritus Professor Emeritus of Soil Microbial Ecology in the Department of Land, Air and Water Resources. The academy honored her for “elucidating the role of soil microbial communities in polluted ecosystems and their responses to agricultural management practices,” according to a NAE statement.

His research focuses on the relationships between native soil microbial communities and critical ecosystem processes such as biogeochemical cycling and biodegradation. It has been applied in low-cost approaches that promote biological solutions for cleaning up contaminated groundwater and for sequestering carbon in soil. Over the past decade, she has collaborated with partners in Uganda and Kenya on participatory research on small-scale irrigation, soil health and integrated soil management.

Scow chairs the UC Davis International Agricultural Development graduate group and was director of the Russell Ranch Sustainable Agriculture Facility, a long-term experiment studying the relationships between agricultural management, belowground biodiversity and the sustainability of row crop agroecosystems. Previously, she was director of the Kearney Foundation of Soil Science during the “Soil Carbon and California Terrestrial Ecosystems” mission.

Scow earned his bachelor’s degree in biology from Antioch College and his master’s and doctoral degrees in soil science from Cornell University.

Dan Sperling, professor at UC Davis

Daniel Sperling is Emeritus Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering and Environmental Sciences. He is founding director of the Institute of Transportation Studies and the Institute for Energy, Environment and Economic Policy at UC Davis.

Sperling is a leading international transportation expert whose work has helped pioneer new areas of study to create more efficient, low-carbon, and environmentally friendly transportation systems. Sperling co-led the 2007 study that designed California’s landmark low-carbon fuel standard. He has testified several times before the United States Congress, and has authored or co-authored over 250 technical articles and 13 books, including two billion cars and Three Revolutions: Leading Automated, Shared and Electric Vehicles into a Better Future.

Since February 2007, Sperling has served on tThe California Air Resources Board, appointed by the governors. Schwarzenegger, Brown and Newsom. In this role, he oversees policies and regulations on climate change, low-carbon fuels and vehicles, and sustainable cities. In 2013, he was chairman of the California Fuel Cell Partnership and, in 2015, chairman of the Transportation Research Board (National Academies). In 2019 he received the prestigious Roy Crum Award from the Transportation Research Board and in 2013 he received the Blue Planet Award.

Sperling received his undergraduate degree in engineering and urban planning from Cornell University and his doctorate. in Transportation Engineering from UC Berkeley.

The newly elected class will be formally inducted at the NAE’s annual meeting on October 2.

Inaugural Arabian Leopard Day kicks off across region with focus on saving the species


Across the region, Arabian Leopard Day is also marked with classroom education initiatives as well as social media outreach throughout the day with the hashtag #ArabianLeopardDay. And in a public show of support, many government entities across Saudi Arabia will incorporate the official Arabian Leopard Day logo on their websites and social media today.

In an important step forward, the Royal Commission for AlUla (RCU) today signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Catmosphere Foundation to strengthen regional efforts to safeguard the future of the Arabian leopard. RCU and Catmosphere will work closely together on a series of sustainable and innovative events, campaigns and research initiatives with the common goal of safeguarding the future of the Arabian leopard, an animal of national pride in Saudi Arabia and around the region.

The first Arabian Leopard Day highlights the plight of the species, which once roamed freely across the Arabian Peninsula but is now restricted to small populations scattered across Saudi Arabia, Oman and Yemen.

His Highness the Prince Badr bin Abdulla bin Mohammad bin Farhan Al-SaudGovernor of AlUla and Minister of Culture, said: “The signing of the MoU supports RCU’s Arabian leopard conservation program, which is at the heart of broad sustainable development plans for the wider AlUla region. This agreement also significantly strengthens existing partnerships. with entities concerned with the conservation of natural fauna and flora, including the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).”

Her Royal Highness Princess Reema bint Bandar Al-Saud, Saudi Arabia Ambassador to United States and founder of Catmosphere, said: “The signing of this new MoU supports Catmosphere’s mission to secure a future for big cats, including the Arabian leopard. the species in the wild.”

Amr Al Madani, CEO, royal commission for AlUlasaid: “The Arabian Leopard is a powerful symbol of RCU’s goal to conserve and safeguard the natural environment of AlUla through far-reaching conservation efforts to protect the natural flora and fauna of AlUla. this incredible part of northwestern Arabia. It is a sad reality that the Arabian leopard is critically endangered. Continuing threats to its natural habitat underscore the urgent need to intensify efforts that are so vital to the long-term survival of the species. We really want people to celebrate Arabian Leopard Day and engage in activities to raise awareness and help protect these majestic big cats.”

The Arabian leopard is emblematic of Saudi Arabia and RCU’s broad ambitions for environmental sustainability. The species occupies a unique place in the collective consciousness and imagination of the region; images of the big cat have been found in ancient rock art, inspired folk tales, and are even used in modern everyday expressions.

With fewer than 200 individuals in the wild, the Arabian leopard is listed as Critically Endangered by the IUCN and is considered to be at extremely high risk of extinction in the wild.

Last year, the birth of a female at the Arabian leopard breeding center in Taif, Saudi Arabia, highlighted the great potential for reintroduction of the species into the wild and the mountains around AlUla and beyond. However, there is still a long and difficult way to go with ongoing efforts to establish protected habitat in order to restore the population.

RCU, which regenerates a 22,561 km2 northwest region Saudi Arabia as a global destination for natural and cultural heritage, is committed $25 million to the Arabian Leopard Fund, an independent organization established to implement conservation projects throughout the leopard’s home range. The RCU has designated five nature reserves covering 12,500 km2 and will work with leading experts such as Panthera and the IUCN to activate, conserve and safeguard these protected areas with a vision that leopards could one day roam free again.

Saudi Arabia The Council of Ministers has designated Arabian Leopard Day on February 10 every year.

Note to editors:
It’s still AlUla.

We will be providing photographs of the landmarks tonight featuring images from Arabian Leopard Day. The cue points will light up simultaneously 7:10 p.m. Saudi Arabia. Also, please find supports including toolkit and FAQ here.

About the Royal Commission for AlUla

The Royal Commission for AlUla (RCU) was established by Royal Decree in July 2017 preserve and develop AlUla, an area of ​​outstanding natural and cultural significance in the northwest Saudi Arabia. RCU’s long-term plan outlines a responsible, sustainable and sensitive approach to urban and economic development that preserves the region’s natural and historic heritage, while making AlUla a desirable place to live, work and visit. This encompasses a wide range of initiatives in the fields of archaeology, tourism, culture, education and the arts, reflecting a commitment to address the priorities of economic diversification, empowerment of local communities and preservation of the heritage of of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia Vision 2030 program.

Media contact:
Joy Jinith
Advisor, Hill+Knowlton Strategies
00971 50 7219369

Video – https://mma.prnewswire.com/media/1744056/AlUla_Elephant_Rock.mp4
Photo – https://mma.prnewswire.com/media/1744054/Royal_Commission_for_AlUla.jpg

SOURCE Royal Commission for AlUla

Delta Gamma sorority ceases operations on campus as national organization withdraws charter


Suites for Delta Gamma and other WU sororities are located in the Ann W. Olin Women’s Building (Student Life Archives)

The Delta Gamma Fraternity National Council voted in January to withdraw the charter of the University of Washington’s Delta Gamma Sorority chapter, ending the organization. almost 108 years old permanence on campus.

While assistant director for sorority and fraternity life James McLendon said there was no singular reason behind the decision, he cited the Abolish the Greek Life movementCOVID-19 and older chapter members graduating as factors that contributed to the national organization‘s choice to remove the charter.

“This chapter was having a little more trouble recovering from some of these things, so the national organization decided they were going to move forward with a process of reviewing their on-campus status,” McLendon said. , characterizing the National’s eventual removal of the organization’s charter as “unfortunate”.

The Abolish Greek Life movement’s Instagram page first went public with the decision in a Publish February 4, centering their movement as the main motivation behind the fate of Delta Gamma. The post said the national organization “voted unanimously to withdraw the charter of the Alpha Epsilon chapter at WashU, citing AGL and campus pressure as the reason for the hiatus and immediate closure of the chapter.”

In Campus Life-reported spring 2021 statistics, Delta Gamma had seven active members and gained nine new members. Two years earlier, in the spring of 2019, the chapter reported 142 members and 47 new members. Delta Gamma isn’t the first chapter to leave campus in recent years, as the Pi Beta Phi and Alpha Omicron Pi the sororities voted to disband and leave campus in the 2020–21 academic year.

Yet, although other Greek organizations have faced similar issues, Delta Gamma was the only one to have its charter withdrawn this year.

“Even our hardest-hit groups really got themselves into trouble last year and avoided something like this,” McLendon said. “So I don’t see any other band going through this at the moment.”

According to McLendon, the decision was made in early to mid-January 2022, but the review process began a few months earlier, in November 2021. Campus Life, along with the Women’s Panhellenic Association (WPA) argued on behalf from Delta Gamma, to “hopefully be able to get the national organization to see that there was something to work with here and that we could do good things with them,” McLendon said. However, advocacy efforts ultimately failed.

According to McLendon, the national ruling will stand for the foreseeable future. “In the short term, yes, it’s permanent,” he said. “There may still be discussions about re-chartering down the line, but at the moment it’s a permanent decision at this time on [the national organization’s] on behalf of.” McLendon said the University would have to approve any charter renewal effort and that “we really don’t see any type of expansion in the next few years.”

As the sorority rush for the remaining six organizations continues this weekend, members of the Delta Gamma Chapter cannot immediately join another Chapter.

“They were initiated and have [Delta Gamma] members,” McLendon said. “There is a process they could go through to that end to be released from the national organization if they so choose.”

National Delta Gamma Organization, WPA President Camilla Maionica and former Delta Gamma President Mackenzie Molina did not respond to requests for comment Wednesday night.

Editor’s note: The Greek Life membership data for visualization in this story comes from the Washington University in St. Louis Fraternity and Sorority Life Academic Report compiled by Campus Life each semester. JHere are some discrepancies in the terminology Campus Life has used to track membership data over the past few semesters, so Student Life has reached out to administrators for clarification. Administrators said that since Campus Life staff who worked with the old reports had left the University, they were unable to clarify reporting terminology until the 2020-21 academic year. For the sake of transparency, here is how we calculated the total number of members:

For spring 2017, we calculated the total number of members by adding “active members”, “new members” and “overseas members”. For Fall 2017, the Campus Life report lists only 1208 “total members” as members of WPA organizations. For Spring 2018, Fall 2018 and Spring 2021, we calculated the total number of members by adding “active members” and “new members”. For spring 2019 to spring 2020, we calculated the total number of memberships by adding “membership” and “new members”. For fall 2020, the Campus Life report lists only 152 among members of WPA organizations.

Editor Matthew Friedman contributed reporting.

#12 Because East Portland was once a park wasteland, but now there’s more green space


Portland’s best view of Mount St. Helens at sunset is from a dump.

Well, technically Thomas Cully Park hasn’t been a dump since 1990. For two decades it sat like another industrial blob off Northeast Killingsworth Street – until Portland Parks & Recreation cleaned up the brownfield site and transforming it into a 25-acre urban park that opened in 2018. From atop a hill on a winter’s afternoon, St. Helens presides over a view that encompasses young ponderosa pines, a suspension bridge leading to slides and oil trains sliding down a railway line. It’s a view that shows how much the neighborhood has changed and how far it still has to go.

Over the past decade, Portland has witnessed extraordinary civic investment in the parks of its easternmost neighborhoods. Since 2013, the Parks Bureau has spent $84 million on parks east of 82nd Avenue. (Because Cully Park is northeast of 72nd Avenue, it’s not even included in that total.) The result is one of City Hall‘s most tangible achievements in decades to make the city more fair to low-income people of color, who disproportionately live on the eastern edge of Portland.

Spurred on by then-City Commissioner Amanda Fritz, city officials decided they had a duty to address what could be called a gap in parks.

“2017 data shows that citywide, 1 in 5 households do not have easy access to a park or natural area within a 15-minute walk, or 20% of all Portland residents,” says Mark Ross, spokesperson for Portland Parks & Rec. “But in East Portland, the access gap jumps to 2 in 5 households.”

The campaign to correct this imbalance has resulted in some works of public architecture that could easily go unnoticed unless you find yourself strolling along Northeast 127th Avenue. There, nestled in a modest residential area, are 16 acres of paradise: Luuwit View Park. (“Luuwit” is a Chinook name for Mount St. Helens – and the view of the summit here makes me re-evaluate my previous award for best view.) Nationally acclaimed firm Skylab Architecture designed the trails, basketball courts, and , the skate bowl, and a geometric, yellow picnic shelter that resembles a newly landed spaceship.

It’s a landscape one would expect to see on a revitalized waterfront or the Nike campus, places built to attract and celebrate capital. Instead, it was planted in one of the most neglected parts of town.

Two years of the pandemic have taught us the importance of common outdoor spaces. Yet East Portland’s parks have only made headlines when they host a gun homicide or a homeless camp. It’s worth taking a moment to consider that the very existence of these places – Gateway Green, Gateway Discovery Park, Leach Botanical Garden – is one of the few signs that Portland is headed in the right direction: east. .

Eco warrior, 10, wins a place on the national environmental education committee

Lester Island

A schoolgirl inspired by Greta Thunberg has joined a national committee developing green education in schools across the country.

Isla Lester, 10, from Dorchester, is one of 22 young members of the first-ever National Eco Committee – which has been tasked with ‘greening’ the national scheme.

The sixth-grader from Dorchester Middle School has been campaigning for the environment since a young age.

As a student at Damers First School, she joined the school’s eco club which fueled her passion for environmental activism, her father Ben said.

“As soon as she got to Isla, she ran with it,” he said.

“She started talking to MPs when she was only six or seven, which was quite surprising because she’s very quiet. She really surprised us all with everything she did.

“I don’t think she realizes at the moment all the things she does and the impact it has had.”

Among Isla’s many accomplishments are being an ambassador for a children’s radio station in Australia and appearing on ITV Meridian News to talk about litter in lockdown, particularly the high number of discarded disposable masks. She also took part in the CPRE Litter in Lockdown study, speaking at an online event attended by MPs.

A future project for Isla will be to ensure that teachers educate their students about the environment with as much passion as possible.

She said: “I think it’s really important that we onboard teachers who are passionate about teaching the environment, so that these lessons can be exciting and fun with lots of hands-on and written learning opportunities. is important that we show children and young people that anyone, regardless of ability, can make a big or small difference.”

Mr. Lester and Isla’s mother, Anna Balistrari, and the teachers at Dorchester Middle School are extremely proud of Isla’s environmental achievements.

Mr Lester said: “Now the eco committee has been launched, Isla will be attending regular meetings.

“She’s very inspired by Greta Thunberg and Sir David Attenborough. It’s hard to keep up with everything she does. Sometimes with everything that’s going on, you feel a bit like her personal assistants!”

Pheasant foster families sought for newborn release program


HUDSON VALLEY, NY – The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation is once again on the hunt for homes for newborn pheasants until they can finally be released back into the wild .

Due to the nature of the program, however, not all newborns are guaranteed happy forever.

Applications are now open for the DEC’s Cooperative Day-Old Pheasant Chick Program, which allows people to participate in raising and releasing pheasants to “enhance fall hunting opportunities”, a announced New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Basil Seggos. The program is a partnership with hunters, 4-H youth and interested landowners.

“Pheasant hunting has a long history in New York City and remains popular among hunters,” Commissioner Seggos said. “The Day-old Pheasant Chick Program is a great way to experience the outdoors and raise pheasants while providing hunters with the opportunity to learn about breeding.”

The Day-Old Pheasant Chick program began in the early 1900s when the state Department of Conservation (a precursor to the DEC) distributed pheasant eggs and chicks to farmers and rural youth. The tradition continues to this day.

Day-old chicks are available free of charge to participants who can provide a brooding facility, a covered outdoor rearing pen and an adequate release site. Successful applicants will receive day-old chicks in April, May or June.

No chicks obtained through the day-old pheasant chick program may be released into private game preserves and all release sites must be approved in advance by the DEC and be open to hunting opportunities. public pheasant.

Applicants are required to provide daily care for fast-growing chicks, monitor bird health, and ensure chicks have sufficient feed and water. Pheasants can be released from the age of eight weeks and must be released no later than December 1.

The program is funded by the state Conservation Fund from license fees paid by hunters, trappers and anglers.

In 2021, DEC distributed over 34,500 day-old pheasant chicks to qualified applicants.

While the program may be part of a long-standing tradition, this year the DEC moved to an online application process.

The app is on the Day-old Pheasant Chick Program webpageas well as a “Pheasant Breeding Guide (PDF)”.

Applications must be submitted by March 25. For questions about the program or eligibility, email [email protected] or call 607-273-2768.

Wicker Park bar owner says city violence, not late hours, is to blame after another shooting at the point


WICKER PARK — A man was shot dead at The Point on Milwaukee Avenue over the weekend, the second shooting to hit the late-night bar in about five months.

Now the bar’s owner, the alderman who represents the area and the local police are scrambling to come up with a security plan that will keep patrons – and neighbors – safe.

The shooting happened just before 5:10 a.m. Sunday, minutes after the bar closed for the night, according to Ald. Daniel La Spata (1st) and Jun Lin, owner of The Point.

RELATED: Bar brawl led to shooting in Wicker Park, police say, as man is charged with attempted murder

Police say a 29-year-old man was inside The Point, 1565 N. Milwaukee Ave., when he “heard gunshots outside and felt pain.” According to the Sun-Times, which obtained an internal police report, the shooter opened fire from across the street, firing at least 10 shots into the bar. Officers found the 29-year-old bleeding on the club floor, the Sun-Times reported.

The victim was taken to Stroger Hospital with a gunshot wound to his right eye, police said. He is listed in serious condition.

La Spata and Lin said the victim was not the intended target of the shooting. He works at a nearby bar and went to The Point for a nightcap, they said.

“It’s really frustrating and disappointing to see this young man – someone who was completely an unintended victim in all of this” … getting shot, La Spata said.

Credit: Colin Boyle/Block Club Chicago
Jun Lin, owner of The Point at 1565 N. Milwaukee, poses for a portrait in Wicker Park on June 3, 2021.

This is the second time in five months that the Wicker Park bar has been the scene of a shooting. One person was killed and four others were injured on October 10 in a shooting outside the bar.

Police said the incident stemmed from a bar fight inside The Point. After the altercation, the workers decided to shut down for the night, which led to people gathering in the street and then gunfire, police said.

Lin, however, denied that an altercation inside led to the bar closing. He told the Block Club in October that he had called 911 several times for help with a commotion on the street before the shooting.

Still, La Spata said he was concerned about the similarities between the two shootings.

“I can’t say The Point was to blame for this, but to have two shootings at least marginally related to this business is truly troubling to residents of Wicker Park and in general,” the alderman said.

RELATED: Wicker Park shooting at busy Milwaukee Avenue intersection leaves 1 man dead, 4 injured

Lin said he had “no idea” what prompted Sunday’s shooting, which was caught on the bar’s surveillance cameras.

Reviewing the footage, Lin said the shooter was part of a group of people who were at the bar earlier that night. All of the group members showed their IDs and drank at the bar as usual, Lin said.

Surveillance footage shows the group later left the bar without incident, Lin said. But minutes after he left, one person from the group returned and threw gunfire inside the bar before fleeing, he said.

Lin said he has been working closely with local police and La Spata to address violence in and around the bar since the October shooting. He said he had tightened security and his staff were diligently checking IDs at the gate. A police car was parked outside the bar for hours that night, he said.

The bar owner said he couldn’t be blamed for what has become a “problem of violence in Chicago”. The city recorded nearly 800 homicides last year, the most in 25 years.

“What could I have done differently?” This is someone who walked in with a valid ID, bought a drink and left, then put bullets in my business,” Lin said.

Credit: Colin Boyle/Block Club Chicago
Aldus. Daniel La Spata (1st) looks on during a town council meeting July 21.

But in the aftermath of the second shooting, a growing number of neighbors are calling on local leaders to work together to prevent more shootings from happening.

La Spata said he intended to meet with Lin and local police soon to reinforce their violence prevention plan. One measure that could help, the alderman said, is to reduce The Point’s opening hours. Currently, the bar is allowed to stay open until 4 a.m. most of the week because Lin holds a late liquor license. On Sundays the bar is allowed to stay open until 5am

The City Council recently approved a permanent overnight parking ban designed to limit public parties and crime on Wicker Park’s Milwaukee Avenue, a plan developed by La Spata in response to violence and commotion in the area. The ban was in effect when the shooting happened on Sunday, La Spata said.

“They have an operation plan. There are steps they have already taken in terms of scanning IDs at the door…but clearly something is going on that isn’t working so I’m sure there are adjustments to be made” , said La Spata.

Lin is strongly against reducing the bar’s opening hours. The only way the bar is able to pay artists and musicians to perform there regularly is if they generate extra revenue during late hours, he said. An earlier closing time won’t stop people from shooting randomly at his business, he argued, it might just lead to earlier shootings.

“We do everything we can to be a company. We were simply victims of two gunshots. It’s violence in Chicago. I don’t think the answer is in my close affairs, as we haven’t done anything wrong,” he said.

Subscribe to Block Club Chicago, an independent, 501(c)(3), journalist-run newsroom. Every penny we earn funds neighborhoods across Chicago.

Click here to support Block Club with a tax-deductible donation.

Our environmental crisis requires political solutions, not technological ones

Whether via the West Coast wildfires that shrouded the New York skyline in smoke or the historic floods in Germany, in 2021 the signs of the climate crisis were everywhere. A group of the world’s most eminent conservationists summed up humanity’s predicament when they recently argued that our main purpose as a species is to “avoid a dreadful future”.

So far, we’ve responded to the threat of environmental collapse mostly by trying to change our technologies, whether that’s moving away from combustion engines or making solar power cheaper and more efficient. Many policy makers, scientists and opinion leaders think we are headed in the right direction. Their main concern is whether we are going to act fast enough to avoid the greatest environmental disasters.

These ideas may seem disconnected from reality. And that’s exactly what I mean: our failure to conceptualize bold change signals a crisis of political imagination that is at the root of what political scientist Karen Litfin calls the “growing socioecological multicrisis.”

And I deliberately refer to the term multicrisis rather than climate change because we are witnessing a multitude of interconnected crises. The public conversation revolves around cutting emissions to slow global warming, but the hard truth is that even if we had a magic button that could stop all emissions overnight, even if we could stay below 1 .5 degrees of warming (now an unlikely outcome), we would still be left with multiple other existential crises. We remain attached to the ideologies that caused this mess in the first place, such as extractivism, the belief that the Earth is ours to exploit, and speciesism, the idea that humans are superior to all other species.

Biodiversity loss and ecosystem collapse are caused by a myriad of reasons other than climate change, from chemical pollutants released into the environment to damming of rivers to invasive species carried around the world through trade and travel. global. The plight of each endangered species is different, and there is no single technological solution that can solve this crisis. In addition, there is the crisis of the phosphate and nitrogen cycles, the overexploitation of water reservoirs, overfishing, deforestation, the list goes on.

Once we grasp this complexity, it becomes clear that we need to rethink our society and our future. Recognizing that climate change is just one facet of a larger multi-crisis can seem paralyzing or even hopeless; but it is, in fact, liberating. It helps us realize that some of our current paradigms just aren’t fit for sustainability and it’s time to get really creative.

Political imagination is powerful because it can turn seemingly radical ideas into achievable goals. We have seen this many times in history: grassroots resistance by political activists helped to wear down the apartheid regime in South Africa. In the 1960s and 1970s, Cold War dissidents first imagined democracy in Eastern Europe in clandestine writings, called samizdats, before their societies began to see it as a realistic possibility. History teaches us that the path to profound change is paved with radical imagination. It also teaches us that while change can happen faster than expected, it rarely happens overnight, which is why we need to start now.

What could the political imagination allow us to do differently today? Instead of an economy driven by the diktat of infinite growth, we could direct our trajectory towards stable economies, while preserving markets and healthy competition between companies. We could pass legislation recognizing the rights of future generations and the rights of other species to autonomy, allowing the judiciary to maintain a much higher standard of environmental protection than is possible within current frameworks.

Last summer, a landmark study suggested we could be seeing the first signs of the Gulf Stream collapsing, and the IPCC issued its sharpest warning yet about the severity of climate change. The urgency could hardly be greater. Embracing radical political imagination as the way forward would have a dramatic impact on how our civilization relates to the natural world and the future, which in turn would bring us closer to resolving the Multi-Crisis.

So how do we facilitate a new way of thinking about politics? Diversify the conversation in the media, giving space to environmental crises other than climate change that are less likely to benefit from linear technological solutions that fit into our current economic frameworks. Talking seriously about marginal solutions like intergenerational justice and degrowth is just as important. In our education system, we can shift the emphasis from ‘development of human capital’ to ‘promotion of imaginative potential’. And we can fight for the right to vote, maybe even try to introduce proportional representation into our politics, to allow pockets of imagination of alternative futures to enter the political mainstream.

Nearly 1,400 Acres in Laurens County Protected by Upstate Forever in 2021 | News


The Greenville and Spartanburg-based conservation organization Upstate Forever protected nearly 3,600 acres of private and public forests, farmland and green space in northern South Carolina in 2021. Other projects where Upstate Forever has been integral to the effort’s success include nearly 900 additional acres.

Conservation projects completed by Upstate Forever in 2021 include:

In the county of Abbeville,

  • 669 acres on two properties containing hardwood and pine forests, wetlands and wildlife habitats that play a role in safeguarding the water quality of the Savannah River, the county’s only source of drinking water. ‘Abbeville. Funding from the South Carolina Conservation Bank (SCCB) has helped make these successful conservation projects possible.

In Greenville County,

  • Spring Park Inn and grounds, a 19and-century home and its surrounding 20 acres in the heart of downtown Travelers Rest. The Travelers Rest Historical Society is currently working to restore the historic property. A grant from the SCCB made possible the conservation easement that protects the land from future development.
  • 300 acres in partnership with the South Carolina Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism (SCPRT). The property, known as the White Tract, was originally purchased by The Nature Conservancy (TNC) following a multi-year campaign to raise over $2.2 million. to obtain this large area. TNC then transferred ownership of the property to SCPRT, which partnered with Upstate Forever to place a conservation easement on the land. Although not currently open to the public for outdoor recreation, future public access is being planned to help meet the growing demand for natural spaces and expanding access to the park. along the Blue Ridge escarpment. Funding from the Daniel-Mickel Foundation helped make this conservation success possible.
  • Calico Vineyard, a 113-acre vineyard and family farm. With currently and planned protected properties located nearby, protecting Calico Vineyard helps safeguard agriculture, scenic views, wildlife habitat and water quality. water in this rapidly developing region. Funding from the SCCB and Greenville Women Giving contributed to the success of this conservation project.

In Greenwood County,

  • Over 400 acres of hunting and woodland land, known as Bent Ear Farms. This property is rich in flora and fauna including mature hardwood forests, native plant species and wildlife. Directly upstream from Greenwood Lake with over 3 miles of frontage on Turkey Creek, its conservation directly contributes to water quality in the area.

In Laurens County,

  • Gobblers Roost, a 1,020 acre timber and hunting property in Laurens and neighboring Newberry County. Funding from the SCCB and the Upstate Land Conservation Fund (ULCF) has made the conservation of this property possible, ensuring the permanent protection of its natural and landscape values.
  • A 415 acre network of waterfront buffers in Laurens and Newberry counties near the town of Cross Hill. The Saluda Mitigation Bank protects riparian buffers and wetlands along Mills Creek, Mudlick Creek and several tributaries of the Saluda River watershed.

In Oconee County,

  • Taychoedah, a 42-acre property near Lake Keowee with habitat for the rare Oconee bell. The protection of properties such as this, located within the known geographic range of its historic distribution and in suitable moist and wooded conditions, is imperative to support the future of this rare and endemic plant. Funding from the Oconee County Conservation Bank (OCCB) supported this conservation project.
  • A 38-acre parcel in the community of Whetstone, a priority conservation area due to its proximity to the Wild & Scenic Chattooga River and Sumter National Forest. This property contains open pasture and nearly ½ mile of frontage along Whetstone Creek, a major tributary of the Chattooga. Funding from the SCCB and the OCCB ensured the success of this project.

And in the county of Spartanburg,

  • 88 acres of land on Lawson’s Fork Creek. Containing wetlands and stream images, and adjacent to Wofford College’s Goodall Environmental Center and Spartanburg Area Conservancy’s Glendale Shoals Preserve, this protected property has significant natural, educational and recreational value. Funding from the ULCF contributed to the protection of this property.

In addition, two amended easements added more than 470 acres to existing conservation lands in Laurens and Anderson counties. The two properties, originally protected in 2009, now protect an additional acreage that includes prime farmland soils, woodlands and wildlife habitats.

Other projects where Upstate Forever’s support has been integral to the success of the effort include seven properties in Oconee County:

  • Historic Crawford Mill, approximately 35 acres along Cherokee Foothills Scenic Highway 11. The property has a significant range of cultural and natural resources including Native American petroglyphs, a bicentennial farm with 20 acres of pasture and frontage on Fair Play Creek . The non-profit organization Foothills Farmstead will manage the property as a public park and educational center. Upstate Forever supported the Oconee Soil and Water Conservation District on this project, and funding from the SCCB and ULCF ensured its success.
  • Whetstone Creek Preserve, 155 acres was recently designated a conservation priority by the U.S. Forest Service in the Sumter National Forest.This conservation project helps eliminate a major source of pollution in the Chattooga River and protects a potential site of a village Cherokee where a trade trail once passed. This partnership project with the Naturaland Trust, the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) and the US Forest Service received funding from the OCCB and the SCCB.
  • 170 acres near the towns of Walhalla and Westminster. A conservation easement on this land helps protect a tributary of the Chauga River, as well as the rural character of the community and a growing footprint of conservation properties in the area. Upstate Forever supported the Oconee Soil and Water Conservation District on this project, and SCCB and OCCB funding helped make it possible.
  • A 463-acre collection of properties known as Oconee Bells Preserves in partnership with Naturaland Trust. These three patches are located near Devils Fork State Park and provide critical habitat for the rare Oconee bell plant. These properties will be included in the SCDNR’s Heritage Preserve program. Protection of this critical habitat was made possible through support from Oconee Forever, the SCCB, and the Keowee-Toxaway Habitat Enhancement Program, a cooperative initiative of Duke Energy.
  • 56 agricultural acres in the “Area of ​​Concern” designated by the Oconee Soil and Water Conservation District for important soil resources. Upstate Forever supported the Oconee Soil and Water Conservation District on this project, and SCCB and OCCB funding ensured the success of this project.

“Despite another year of unprecedented uncertainty and challenges, Upstate Forever’s land conservation team has worked with landowners and partner organizations to permanently protect a record acreage in 2021,” Scott Park said. , Glenn Hilliard, Land Conservation Director of Upstate Forever. “As upstate farmers and landowners face increasing development pressure and demand for accessible green spaces increases, we must act now to protect more special places upstate. that our communities cherish.”

Upstate Forever protects land in partnership with landowners through conservation easements, voluntary contracts that allow the landowner to legally restrict certain land uses on their property, such as the development of residential subdivisions, commercial operations or industries, while allowing traditional rural land uses such as agriculture, grazing, hunting and logging to continue. This agreement is permanent and remains with the land even after it has been sold or bequeathed to heirs.

Since its founding in 1998, Upstate Forever’s nationally accredited land trust has permanently protected nearly 30,000 acres through conservation easements in the ten-county region of Abbeville, Anderson, Cherokee, Greenville, Greenwood, Laurens, Oconee, Pickens, Spartanburg and Union. .

The Krewe of Iberians’ Queen’s organization organizes a tea in honor of debutantes | People


State and National Parks are right out the back door | Outside


Editor’s Note: This is the second in a two-part series on Appalachian state and national parks. The first episode was about parks in northeast Tennessee. Almost anywhere in Southwest Virginia you will find a state or national park.

In the pristine landscape of the Appalachian Highlands, the diversity of scenery is quite impressive, and the parks are one of the best ways to get out and enjoy nature.

Here is an overview of most state and national parks in our immediate area.


The Cumberland Gap is often considered the first great gateway to the West. You can follow the paths of buffaloes, Native Americans, longhunters and pioneers. All traveled this route through the mountains in the Kentucky wilderness in Cumberland Gap National Historical Park.

Modern-day explorers and travelers marvel at this grand gateway and the many miles of trails and scenery found within the park.

You can access this national park either through Lee County in far southwestern Virginia, following the Wilderness Road, or by driving north to Morristown and passing through Harrogate.

There are over 80 miles of hiking trails in the park, ranging from short, easy 1/4 mile hikes to the 21-mile Ridge Trail.

History and the natural world come alive throughout the park. A multitude of historical sites can be seen in the park including: Civil War fortifications, ruins of an old iron furnace, hand hewn cabins and split rail fences at Hensley Settlement.

Wildlife is abundant in the park and includes: deer, beaver, fox, bobcat, bear and over 150 species of birds.

You can learn more about one of the most accessible national parks in our immediate area by visiting https://www.nps.gov/cuga/index.htm.


Wilderness Road State Park in Ewing, Virginia offers picnicking, hiking, nature, and living history programs. The Visitor Center houses a theater showcasing an award-winning docudrama, “Wilderness Road, Spirit of a Nation.”

The center also has a border museum and a gift shop offering unique regional gifts. The park includes the reconstruction of Martin’s Station, an outdoor living history museum depicting frontier life in Virginia in 1775.

Guests also enjoy the park’s picnic shelters, 100-seat amphitheater, ADA-certified playground, sand volleyball court, and horseshoe courts. Visitors can hike, bike, or horseback ride the 8.5-mile Wilderness Road Trail connecting the park to more than 80 miles of trails in Cumberland Gap National Historical Park.


A National Historic Landmark in Big Stone Gap, the museum is housed in an 1890s Victorian stone mansion with an original oak interior. The museum’s collection includes more than 60,000 exhibits and state-of-the-art exhibits telling the story of exploration and development in Southwestern Virginia, from the pioneer era of the 1700s through the of the “boom and bust” of the late 1800s.

The museum also offers many interpretive and special events. The gift shop offers unique items representative of the region’s history and craftsmanship made by regional artisans.

The park offers facilities for meetings, weddings and other special occasions, and the charming Poplar Hill Cottage is available for overnight guests.


Over 850 feet long and 10 stories high, the natural tunnel was naturally carved through a limestone ridge over thousands of years. William Jennings Bryan called it the “eighth wonder of the world”. Other picturesque features include a wide chasm between steep stone walls surrounded by several pinnacles or “chimneys”.

Facilities include two campgrounds, cabins, picnic areas, an amphitheater, visitor center, camp store and gift shop. You’ll also find the Wilderness Road Historic District, a pool with a 100-foot waterslide, and a chairlift to the tunnel floor.

Guests can enjoy cave tours and canoe trips on the Clinch River, as well as the Cove Ridge Center, which offers environmental education, conference facilities, and overnight dorms.

The Daniel Boone Wilderness Trail Interpretive Center in Duffield is a satellite facility of this park. The center has a museum, library, lecture hall, gift shop, and outdoor classroom.


This park is currently under development, with the Sugar Hill unit in St. Paul open for hiking, biking, and fishing. Sugar Hill currently has 8 miles of hiking trails, a picnic shelter, over two miles of river frontage, and significant cultural and historical attributes.

The property contains remains of an 18th century French colony. There is a public boat launch available for boat access to the Clinch River at Artrip in Russell County.

Once developed, Clinch River State Park will showcase the natural, historic and recreational resources of the river. This will be the first Blueway State Park in Virginia. It will consist of several smaller anchor properties (250-400 acres) linked by multiple canoe/kayak access points along a 100 mile stretch of the Clinch River.

Some of the access points will be part of the state park, while other partner agencies and localities will have additional launch access points.


Near Mount Rogers and Whitetop Mountain – Virginia’s two highest peaks – Grayson Highlands offers panoramic views of alpine peaks over 5,000 feet high.

It’s about an hour and a half drive from the Tri-Cities in the great wilderness, but well worth the trip.

Facilities include a visitor center, campgrounds, and hiking trails to waterfalls and viewpoints. Scenic horse trails and a horse camping area with electric and water hookups, stables and trailer parking are available.

The park offers year-round access to the Appalachian Trail and the Virginia Highlands Horse Trail. There is much more that can be explored in the recreation section of the website at https://www.dcr.virginia.gov/state-parks/grayson-highlands#recreation.


One of Virginia’s premier six state parks, Hungry Mother has long been a favorite. It is known for its beautiful woods and peaceful 108-acre lake in the heart of the mountains.

The park has a sandy beach with public baths, boat rentals (canoe, kayak, pedal boats and paddle boards), a boat launch and a universally accessible fishing pier. Guests also enjoy campgrounds, cabins, yurts, gift shops, a visitor center, a six-bedroom family lodge, and hiking and biking trails.

The Hemlock Haven Conference Center, which is available for retreats, conferences, and special events, is also located within the park.


Millions of years ago, in an area that now crosses Kentucky and Virginia in rural Buchanan County, a vast inland sea retreated, leaving in its wake a veritable cradle of botany. Meanwhile, the river that is now Russell Fork set out to carve out a huge and spectacular gorge, reputed to be the largest east of the Mississippi. Here, fractal ferns, galax, coltsfoot, tea berries and a profusion of species of fungi and mosses dot an undergrowth of rich greens with their bright yellows, oranges and pinks.

Hikers, prepare to catch your breath as you look up from the delicate landscape beneath your feet to the wonder of a raptor soaring above you. Boaters, rafters, riders, take a moment to rest in awe of these timeless mountains, as their undulating profiles dissolve into ever fading shades of blue in the distance.

Whether you’re biking, hiking, horseback riding, or rafting through the park, you’ll find yourself exploring, just like those who came here first. Passing through the ancient hunting grounds of the Shawnee and Cherokee, one might as well follow the 18th century legend of John Swift’s lost silver mines.

The park is open to visitors year-round, but the restaurant and some activities are unavailable during part of the low season.

Over 20 miles of hiking trails criss-cross the park, varying from easy to difficult. Most are less than a mile long, but the interconnecting trails give hikers a good choice of longer routes over varying terrain. Maps with descriptions of each trail are available at the Visitor Center.

For more information, visit http://www.breakspark.com/ and don’t forget to visit the five-mile gorge that plunges over 1,600 feet, often referred to as the “Grand Canyon of the South.”

5 Best Hiking Trails in Nashville, TN

Below is a list of the best hiking trails in Nashville. To help you find the best hiking trails near you in Nashville, we’ve put together our own list based on this list of rating points.

Nashville’s Best Hiking Trails:

The top rated hiking trails in Nashville, TN are:

  • Radnor Lake State Park – Ideal for nature lovers
  • Richland Creek Greenway – McCabe Trailhead – offers an outdoor experience
  • Shelby Bottoms Nature Center & Greenway – the park covers more than 1200 acres
  • Harpeth River State Park – Hidden Lake – famous for kayaking, canoeing, fishing and hiking
  • Percy Warner Park – perfect for picnic shelters, dog parks, scenic drives and lookouts, hiking trails, mountain bike trails, equestrian center,

Radnor Lake State ParkHiking in Nashville

Radnor Lake State Park is a 1,368 acre park and is guarded as a Class II Natural Area. It is special because of the abundance of wildlife viewing opportunities, environmental education programs, hiking opportunities, and its location in an urban area. The park is daytime use only, and the 7.75 miles of the trail is literally used for hiking, photography, and wildlife viewing. Pets, joggers, and bicycles are only permitted on the Otter Creek Road Trail. The Lake Trail is convenient for people in all-terrain wheelchairs. The park is ideal for nature lovers to observe owls, herons and waterfowl as well as many species of amphibians, reptiles and mammals such as mink and otter.

Hundreds of species of wildflowers, mosses, fungi, ferns and other plants, as well as trees, shrubs and vines, add to the natural environmental diversity of the area. Several ranger-led programs are scheduled throughout the year, including canoe floats, wildflower walks, nighttime astronomy hikes, nature hikes, snake programs, hikes off-road and birds of prey.


Activities, Souvenir Shops, Hiking


Address: 1160 Otter Creek Road, Nashville, TN 37220
Call: (615) 373-3467
Website: www.tnstateparks.com/radnor-lake


“Radnor Lake Park has beautifully wooded trails that are so well maintained. In my opinion, this park is great to visit in the fall when all the colors are present in the trees. Parking is not so bad at the beginning of the week. It’s hard to find a place to park on weekends, but sometimes you’re lucky and arrive when someone is leaving. If you end up having to wait, it’s worth it. – Kenneth G.

Richland Creek Greenway – McCabe TrailheadBest Hiking Trails in Nashville

Richland Creek Greenway – McCabe Trailhead, The Richland Creek Greenway leads to Richland Creek, an urban reclaiming waterway located in Sylvan Park and the Nations. The Greenway provides an outdoor experience that connects the neighborhoods of Sylvan Park and Cherokee Park. The walking path and scenic creek crossings also connect users to shopping malls, entertainment areas and schools. McCabe Park: 4.1 miles of paved trail connecting McCabe Park and the community of Sylvan Park with shopping centers along White Bridge Pike and Harding Roade, and Nashville State Community College.

Railway history buffs will want to stop at the White Bridge Road trailhead, where it’s a historical landmark for Dutchman’s Curve, the site of the Great Train Wreck of 1918, one of the worst rail crashes of the country’s history.


Bridgeside Dinner, Richland Creek Run, Hike


Address: 4617 Sloan Road, Nashville, TN 37209
Call: (615) 862-8400
Website: www.greenwaysfornashville.org/individual-maps


“Great place to run, walk, walk your dog, cycle or take your kids to play. We took our dogs to the creek to play and cool off. Great place.” -Angie V.

Shelby Bottoms Nature Center & GreenwayNashville Hiking Trails

Shelby Bottoms Nature Center & Greenway is a 300-acre multi-use park just two miles from downtown Nashville along the Cumberland River. Comprising the Shelby Bottom Natural Area, the park spans over 1200 acres. The land that is now Shelby Park (and much of historic East Nashville) belonged to James Shaw, who sold the property to David Shelby in 1788. In 1818, David Shelby deeded the land to his two sons, the Dr. John Shelby and Anthony Shelby as a Christmas present. Before the day was out, Dr. John Shelby bought his brother’s half for $2,500.

Dr. John Shelby became a pillar of the community that was then considered the town of Edgefield (East Nashville). Several places are named after him such as Shelby Street, Shelby Park, and Shelby Street Pedestrian Bridge, now part of the Metro Parks Greenway system.


Shelby Park Attractions, Events, Hiking


Address: 1900 Shelby Bottoms Greenway, Nashville, TN 37206
Call: (615) 862-8539
Website: www.nashville.gov/shelby-park


“Percy has the best quality trails in the Nashville area so far.” – Robert H.

Harpeth River State Park – Hidden LakeGood hiking trails in Nashville

Harpeth River State Park – Hidden Lake is an elongated park that manages nine river access sites along 40 river miles. The sites include several natural, archaeological and historical areas. The park is famous for kayaking, canoeing, fishing and hiking. Entry areas for canoes are located at all sites (except archaeological areas). The Harpeth River is a Class I river. It is suitable for beginner to advanced paddlers. Visitors can bring their personal canoe or kayak. Rentals and trip details are available from local outfitters in and around Kingston Springs. Accessible sites are closed for safety reasons in the event of flooding. Much land around the Harpeth River is privately owned.

Hidden Lake is a naturalist’s paradise with hiking trails, majestic cliffs and abundant wildlife. A one-mile trail wanders around and through a wildflower meadow. Another trail offers a half-mile hike through the forest and with a majestic turn to a small lake with a one-mile trail that climbs to the top of a ridge where the remains of an old dance floor in marble are all that remains of a 1940s resort.


Picnic, Activities


Address: 7851 McCrory Ln, Nashville, TN 37221
Call: (615) 952-2099
Website: www.tnstateparks.com/harpeth-river


“Cool place for family outings, hiking and walking your pets.” – Michael B.

Percy Warner ParkOne of Nashville's best hiking trails

Percy Warner Park is administered by the Metro Nashville Department of Parks and Recreation. Warner Parks is one of the largest municipal parks in Tennessee and together span over 3,100 acres of forest and field, 9 miles from downtown Nashville. Nearly one million people visit Warner Parks each year to enjoy the nature center, picnic shelters, dog parks, scenic drives and lookouts, hiking trails, mountain biking trails, mountain, equestrian center, equestrian trails, running courses, golf courses and sports fields. Warner Parks is also an important historic community resource listed on the National Register of Historic Places.


Special events, picnic, hike


Address: 50 Vaughn Rd, Nashville, TN 37221
Call: (615) 862-8555
Website: www.nashville.gov/warner-parks


“One of Nashville’s most prized possessions. A secret that many are unaware of. A beautiful piece of paradise that can never be destroyed by greedy people.” -Ken J.

Springtime Fleeting Love – River Journal Online – News for Tarrytown, Sleepy Hollow, Irvington, Ossining, Briarcliff Manor, Croton-on-Hudson, Cortlandt and Peekskill

Photo: pexels.com

February is when winter begins to fade ever so slightly. The shelves are filled with Valentine’s Day cards and chocolates. Phil makes an appearance, and we all watch closely to see if the groundhog sees his shadow. Whatever the outcome, spring isn’t here yet; just wait until march 20and.

But there you go, some of our natives fleeting springs start to appear. Some magical flowers bloom as early as February, when the sun can reach them on the forest floor before the trees begin to leaf.

The spring ephemeral season begins in February and ends in May. The flowers are short-lived and fade quickly. I recommend taking a stroll through one of Westchester’s many nature preserves and trying your luck at spotting (but not shooting) them. Here are some of my favorite ephemera blooming in this area to watch.

Spring Beauty Photo flickr

Spring Beauty (Claytonia virginica) – Flowers from February to April

This pinkish-white spring beauty with star petals can sometimes bloom as early as February and only last a week, so keep your eyes peeled. The flowers wait to open until the native solitary bees are ready. In particular, the lesser bee will only collect pollen from the spring beauty; it can only feed on this one plant. And he lays his eggs on that one plant. This is an example of a specialized plant-animal relationship, developed over thousands of years as the two species interacted and lived in the same habitat. It highlights the importance of native plants and their role in a biodiverse food web.

Skunk Cabbage Photo flickr

Skunk cabbage (Symplocarp foetidus) – Flowers from February to April

Skunk cabbage is my absolute favorite ephemeral. I love the provocative shape of the skunk cabbage flower. And the scent is so unique that when it first blooms in the spring, I just have to stop and pick it up. The mottled purple-red flower curls up with a spike in the middle. Beetles and flies are the primary pollinators of skunk cabbage, which is why it gives off a pungent smell of carrion. Somehow the cabbage produces its own heat, hot enough to create flower buds as hot as 70 degrees, melting the snow around it. The next time you walk near a wetland or stream, keep your eyes and nose out.

Dutch Panties Photo flickr

Dutch panties (Dicentra cucullaria) – Flowers from April to May

The most adorable spring ephemera is the Hollandais panties. The little white pants seem to move up and down the center rod. Within each pair of breeches is nectar that only long-tongued bees, such as bumblebees, can access. Here’s another specialized relationship where the flower co-evolved with a type of bee, and it’s the only animal that can pollinate dutch breeches. The plant is poisonous to many mammals, including deer, and makes a great addition to a moist garden with dappled shade. They bloom low to the ground for 2-3 weeks, so be sure to spot them before they fade away and ‘go away’.

Our native spring ephemera are valuable and help enhance the look and function of a landscape rich in biodiversity. While the flowers are each beautiful and incredibly unique, behind the scenes there is a complex set of ecosystem relationships, such as springtime beauty blooming in time for the leaf miner to pollinate it. By planting native plants in our yards, we can help support a diverse and naturally beautiful ecological network.

Amanda Bayley is CEO and co-founder of Plan it Wild, a sustainable land management company bringing native habitats back to the yards of Westchester.

More Nature. Now. www.PLANitWILD.com

Need help shoveling snow? Here’s how a Missouri organization is helping the community


COLUMBIA, Missouri (KMIZ.)

After a big winter storm, not everyone is able to clear their driveway. This is why Columbia offers an organization known as the Snow Angels.

According to National Institute of Health, an average of 1.6 million adults visit the emergency room each year due to fall-related injuries. Studies have shown that the risk of falls in cold weather increases significantly after age 65.

Snow Angels is run by Services for Independent Living, a group that helps people with disabilities, seniors, and veterans. Enable individuals and groups to help their community remove snow and ice.

Shoveling snow is not a problem for everyone. However, Columbia resident Lowell Fish says he’s used to shoveling snow, so he doesn’t need the services, but he will always recommend “Snow Angel” to friends and family.

“I do it all the time, I live here, so it just gives me something to do because I’m so retired,” Fish said.

Fish spent just over an hour and a half shoveling snow between yesterday and today, and he told ABC 17 he helped with snow removal for more than 20 years at his previous job, so this n is not new.

Snow and ice can still be dangerous for anyone walking outside, but they are especially dangerous for older people. According to Comfort Keepers, an organization dedicated to providing elder care at home, sensitivity may decrease when you’re in your 60s and 60s, which can make falls easier.

The site also says older people can take medications that have side effects that could also make falls easier.

Fortunately, when it’s cold and there’s a lot of snow to clean up. The Snow Angels seek to help disabled and elderly people who wish to live independently.

You can find more information and a phone number to the organization by by clicking here.

Ephrata raises construction fees to fund parks


EPHRATA — It will cost a little more to build a house in Ephrata.

In a regular meeting on Wednesday, the Ephrata City Council voted 5-1 to raise the city’s park fee to $1,800 per residential lot — and will be paid by a developer when a final subdivision flat is submitted for approval by the city – unless the developer secures side land dedicated to a park in the subdivision.

The new fee is intended to help Ephrata create and maintain new city parks, which almost every council member agreed the city needs.

However, councilman Matt Moore – the only one to vote against the fee increase – said he was concerned the city was raising fees for the wrong people and levying them at the wrong time in the development process. , which would make Ephrata a less attractive place. to construct.

“I think there’s a pretty strong consensus on the board that we’re trying to improve our funding apparatus for parks,” Moore said. “I’m afraid that’s actually quite a substantial change from standard practice for how these developments play out.”

Moore said he thinks it would make more sense to charge fees when building permits are approved, rather than when developers submit final plans for housing estates.

“I don’t want to get to where we disrupt future residential development,” Moore said. “That’s something they won’t encounter, at least in our immediate competing communities.”

However, Ephrata Community Development Manager Dan Leavitt told council members that the fee schedule – upon final approval of the dish – has not changed and is not significantly different from neighboring communities. .

“It is necessary right now that it be collected before recording on the final set,” he said.

City attorney Anna Franz also said comparisons with neighboring communities are difficult, given that each town in Grant County faces very different circumstances, and developers rather than builders are often more informed about what needs to be done to make a development profitable.

“The more you defer to the owner of the individual lot, the more likely they are not to know about this until they come and try to file their planning permission, and now they have to pay all these costs. And you will get a lot of complaints about it,” she said.

Franz also said developers often have access to financing, while individual builders don’t.

Council’s approval of the new fees means the city is now accepting new subdivision applications. Late last year, the city council approved a moratorium on new housing estate applications as it considered raising park fees.

PSU-led team to study microplastics through Co

Microplastics can be found everywhere – from the air to the ocean – but there is still much to learn about the sources and how they move through the landscape. With the help of a one-year planning grant from the National Science Foundation, a Portland-led research team will take a closer look at the cycle of microplastics in the Columbia River Basin, one of largest river basins in the United States, with the goal of obtaining a larger research grant in the future.

The Columbia River Basin covers 258,000 square miles and includes parts of seven states and one Canadian province. In its 1,200 mile oceanward course, the river crosses four mountain ranges and drains more water to the Pacific Ocean than any other river in North or South America.

Environmental science and management professor Elise Granek said sources of plastics in these waters can range from agriculture to septic systems to dryer vents.

“Some sources emit microplastics that are in the air,” she said. “Some of them settle on land, some get washed away in stormwater by precipitation or washed away in the river, and some get re-aerosolized. We want to better understand the sources of microplastics and how they differ between inland rural and urban areas before they reach coastal areas.”

The project will involve sampling various sources of microplastics in rural and urban interior areas and conducting a series of workshops with scientists, sanitation officials, industry representatives, educators, tribes, fishers and non-governmental organizations.

Geography professor Heejun Chang said engaging with a diverse group of stakeholders early on to co-identify the problem and co-generate knowledge is key to tackling microplastic pollution.

“If we don’t change behaviors and change policy, we won’t be able to solve this problem,” he said.

The group will also develop a course, Plastics in the Environment, for K-12 educators who can then take lesson plans back to their classrooms. The course will provide students with a comprehensive understanding of the global problem of plastic pollution covering the life cycles and production of plastic, the global environmental plastic cycle, known environmental sources and uncertainties, physical and biological consequences of plastic in the environment, as well as sample processing and analysis in their schools.

The research team includes Chang; Graneck; Janice Brahney, associate professor of watershed science at Utah State University; Jodryn Wolfand, assistant professor of civil engineering at the University of Portland; Sarah Carvill, senior environmental science teacher at PSU; and Nancee Hunter, director of the Center for Geography Education in Oregon at PSU.

Warning: AAAS and EurekAlert! are not responsible for the accuracy of press releases posted on EurekAlert! by contributing institutions or for the use of any information through the EurekAlert system.

List of sector organizations and school closures for Thursday


Closures / Delays for Thursday

Companies / Organizations

Porter-Starke Services will delay the opening of its outpatient offices in Valparaiso, Portage and Knox on Thursday, February 3, 2022 until 10 a.m.. Appointments scheduled during the period of physical closure of the practice can be given by telemedicine or postponed. Our admissions and emergency department, the hospital care center and the two recovery center sites (Valparaiso and La Porte) will remain open. Emergency services are also always accessible by calling 219.531.3500.

Marram Health Center will be delay the opening of its outpatient offices in Gary and Hebron to Thursday February 3, 2022 until 10 a.m. Scheduled appointments can be delivered via telemedicine or rescheduled. Emergency services are also still accessible by calling 219.806.3000 (Gary) or 219.996.2641 (Hebron).

Paladin facilities will be closed on 03/02/22. No transportation.

LaPorte County Buildings to stay firm Thusday

Michigan City City Hall is closed 2-3-22. City hall staff are working from home and the public can still send emails to the respective departments.

Transit service will continue to be closed Thursday with no bus service.

the Garbage service will not operate on Thursday due to closure of Kingsbury transfer station. “Pickup is expected to resume on Friday, with Thursday pickup being done on Friday and Friday pickup to be picked up on Saturday.

An additional statement from the city says “Customers whose garbage is usually picked up on Thursdays and Fridays are asked to put their bins a day later. Thursday’s garbage will be picked up on Friday and Friday garbage will be picked up on Saturday, February 5, 2022.

all La Porte County Public Library locations are firm Thursday

All HealthLinc sites remain closed until 12:00 p.m. on Thursday

La Porte County Meals on Wheels – No Thursday Meal Delivery February 3, 2022. Using BLIZZARD BOX

-Michigan City Police Department Archives Division is firm Thusday

-La Porte Civic Auditorium COVID testing closed Thursday.


-La Porte Community Schools make a Thursday elearning day 03/02/2022 due to current weather conditions.

-Michigan City Area Schools done Thursday elearning 2/03/2022

– Queen of All Saints School (Michigan City, IN) February 3 is an online learning day.

– Valparaiso Community Schools – Classes canceled on Thursday, February 3, 2022 – This is again a traditional “snow day” without eLearning. Make-up days for February 2 and 3 will be announced early next week.

More information can be found at lpcsc.k12.in.us

-Duneland School Corporation – eLearning day Thursday February 3, 2022. Teachers will post their assignments on Canvas no later than 10:00 a.m.

Students will follow the posted due dates as determined by their teachers.

A decision on extracurricular activities will be made in the afternoon.

-Westville Schools closed and have an eLearning day on Thursday February 3rd. please contact your teacher or principal with any questions.

-New Prairie United School Corporation is hosting an online learning day on Thursday, February 3, due to weather.

-Tri-Township – eLearning day Thursday 2/3/22.

-East Porter County School Corporation CLOSED Thursday, February 3, 2022. This is an e-learning day.

– Portage Township School Corporation – Thursday, February 3 is an online learning day for all PTS students.

Students must log into their online learning platform on Thursday to complete their assignments for the day. Teachers are available by email to answer questions.

“We encourage our Portage Township residents to clear driveways and sidewalks, if you are able to do so. When we resume classes, our students waiting for the bus or walking to school will greatly appreciate your efforts.

Porter Township School Corporation – Online Learning Day Thursday, February 3, 2022 for all PTSC schools due to inclement weather.

-South Central Schools – eLearning Day Thursday – South Central Schools are CLOSED again on Thursday 3rd February. All assignments will be posted on Canvas by 9:00 a.m.

-Both Northwestern Campus of Purdue University at Hammond and Westville continue to operate remotely on Thursday, February 3, 2022. Classes will be held virtually. Students should check Brightspace for information from their instructors. Faculty and staff who can work remotely should do so.

“All services, events and on-site activities scheduled at the Hammond and Westville campuses for February 3 are cancelled. For updates on the status of PNW campus operations, please monitor pnw.edu/alerts.

The campus of the Ivy Tech Community College in Valparaiso remains closed on Thursday, February 3. That means all campuses in Valparaiso, Michigan City and La Porte remain closed. Virtual services will be offered and students are encouraged to check their IvyLearn dashboard for assignments.

Music museum opens amid Hungary’s culture wars


BUDAPEST — A polarizing project by the government of Hungary’s far-right prime minister Viktor Orban to turn the city’s historic park here into a museum district has produced its first building: the House of Music, Hungary.

Designed by Japanese architect Sou Fujimoto, the cultural center, which opened on January 23, offers exhibitions, training and concerts. A permanent interactive show guides visitors through the historical development of Western music; celebrates the contribution of Hungarian composers like Liszt, Bartok and Kodaly; and traces the tradition of Hungarian folk music back to its Central Asian roots. A room, painted in the colors of the Hungarian flag, presents videos on the political history of the country and famous athletes, with the national anthem in soundtrack.

Yet beyond the glass walls of the Maison de la Musique, which are enlivened by reflections of construction elsewhere in the park, this new building is mired in controversy.

Critics said government plans to turn the 200-year-old city park into a museum district are disrupting the natural environment, depriving residents of much-needed public spaces and raising concerns about corruption. But those behind the project say the site has always been more than a public park and the venture is Europe’s biggest urban development project. In a speech, Orban described the transformation as an “unfinished work of art”.

In 2012, Orban’s government announced an ambitious plan to transform the park, in poor condition after decades of neglect, into a five-museum district. The estimated cost at the time was around $250 million, but it had ballooned to almost five times initial projections by 2017.

There had been a virtual consensus that the park needed work, but the government and park conservationists disagreed on the fate of the park’s natural features.

A special legal designation allowed the project to circumvent existing development rules, meaning the Budapest municipality had little say in the government’s plans. And legislation passed by Orban’s party placed the park under the responsibility of a newly created state corporation controlled by its allies. Sandor Lederer of K-Monitor, an anti-corruption watchdog, said public records indicate the House of Music alone cost Hungarian taxpayers up to $100 million.

“The project is a good example of how public investment worked under Orban,” Lederer said. “There are no real needs and impact assessments; citizens and affected parties are excluded from consultations and planning.

He added that poor planning and corruption have benefited companies widely seen as Orban’s clientele, saying: “Not only present generations, but also future generations will pay the costs of yet another pet project in the future. ‘Orban’.

Laszlo Baan, the government commissioner overseeing the project, declined to be interviewed, but a spokeswoman said in a statement that the government had so far spent 250 billion Hungarian forints, or around 800 million dollars, for the project. Fujimoto’s office did not respond to an interview request.

In 2016, private security guards clashed with park wardens over the future site of the Maison de la Musique. Gergely Karacsony, an opposition politician who was elected mayor of Budapest in 2019, did not attend the unveiling of the House of Music on January 22, which took place on Hungarian Culture Day, a national celebration . The building, he wrote on social media, was not born of culture, but of violence.

In a radio interview, Karacsony recently compared building in a public park to urinating in a holy water porch: “You can do it, but it ruins why we’re all here.

Orban, however, has sought to frame the Museum Quarter as a legacy project, and he has used it as a cudgel in his own war against what he sees as the cultural decline of the West. In unveiling the House of Music, he attacked critics of the park’s transformation as leftists opposed to beauty.

“The Hungarian nation never forgets the names of those who built the country,” Orban said in a speech at the ceremony, adding that critics do not remember, “because the Hungarian nation simply kicks them out of its memory”.

He added that the national elections in April would be “a period” that would end the debate on the future of the park.

Since returning to power in 2010, Orban and his allies have taken over state media, as well as most of the country’s private media, to promulgate far-right conspiracy theories, attack critics of the regime and advance Orban’s culture war (which has also reached academia and the arts.) Hungarian cities are currently covered in political advertisements featuring Orban’s main political opponent as Mini-Me from the Austin Powers films.

Orban’s political machine interprets culture as “something to be occupied or conquered”, said Krisztian Nyary, an author who grew up near City Park. “They are only able to think in terms of political logic, but the culture is different.”

He added: “Do we need a House of Music? I do not know. I see it’s a beautiful building, and I’m sure they’ll have some exciting events, but he doesn’t belong there. The park’s repurposing transforms its function, he said, jeopardizing a valuable natural environment that served as the “lungs” of surrounding neighborhoods.

The park is bordered by the sixth and seventh districts, which according to Gabor Kerpel-Fronius, deputy mayor of Budapest, have the least green space in the city. The Museum Quarter, he added, could have been planned elsewhere, such as in a rusty run-down area nearby.

Imre Kormendy, an architect, was president of the Hungarian Town Planning Society when the Museum Quarter project began. He quickly learned that the government had no intention of seriously consulting stakeholders, he said.

“Naïve professionals like me had no idea that this project had already been decided,” he said. “Even the Guggenheim wasn’t built inside Central Park. Why should an urban park be burdened with such development? »

Still, Eszter Reisz, who raised his family in the area, said the park’s development was “fantastic” compared to its previously neglected state.

For Klara Garay, a 71-year-old biology professor who has lived near the park for decades, the repurposing of the park epitomizes the general climate in Hungary. She has been protesting the redevelopment of the park since it began.

“I feel hopeless,” she said. “This country is morally at such a low point.”

Although the House of Music aims at community building and education, the conflict surrounding its genesis is a reminder of why many of Hungary’s most famous musicians – such as Bartok and Gyorgy Ligeti – left the country.

“Hungary’s political past has been very problematic in certain phases of its history,” said musicologist Felix Meyer, who heads the Paul Sacher Foundation in Switzerland. Many talented musicians in the country, he added, have chosen to live in the West.

“It’s as simple as that,” Meyer said. “Hungary was a small country and could be very repressive, and not everyone felt appreciated. They are great minds, very liberal minds, people who needed space and opportunity, so it’s only natural that they had great careers outside of Hungary.

Renowned Hungarian pianist Andras Schiff, who went into exile for more than a decade to protest Orban’s policies, said over the phone that “the way Orban supports culture is very selective”. Schiff added that Orban “will support whatever follows him, anyone who joins the bandwagon.”

Orban’s government, Schiff said, tried “very hard to change history and change facts, but it would be better to work on that, to admit faults and mistakes.”

Asked if he would consider returning to Hungary if Mr Orban was ousted in April, Mr Schiff replied: “Yes, definitely.”

“I would love to come back,” he said. “This is where I was born, it’s my mother tongue and I deeply love Hungarian culture.”

Turtle conservation in Guyana’s Rupununi raises awareness of sustainable wildlife management

Yellow-spotted river turtle (Podocnemis unifilis). CAM

As in many parts of the world, in Yupukari, a small village in the Rupununi region of northern Guyana, Christmas has always been a time of celebration.

The Christmas dish here, however, was not turkey or ham, but turtle. And not just any turtle, but the yellow-spotted river turtle (Podocnemis unifilis) found in the rivers of Guyana and other countries of the Amazon basin.

“We used to eat a lot of turtles at Christmas and other holidays, but now a lot of us have stopped. The population was declining rapidly and we know we have to protect them,” Merissa Samuel said.

Samuel, now 21, started defending turtles as a young girl, telling her grandfather not to hunt them. Becoming more adamant as a member of a local wildlife club for village youths, she eventually managed to convince him to stop hunting reptiles.

In 2020, in a lucky twist of fate, she landed what she considers the perfect job – working with turtles at Caiman House, a community-based ecotourism and research center in partnership with the Guyana Chapter of the Management Program Sustainable Wildlife Management (SWM), which works towards improving wildlife conservation and food security in 13 countries.

The turtle conservation project in Yupukari began in 2011, when researcher Jeff Slocum sparked the interest of a few locals in turtle conservation. An early convert to conservation benefits, local resident Anthony Roberts is currently director of the project. Several members of the community quickly became involved, as well as the village council.

However, a turning point for the project began in 2020 when the partnership with SWM began to support a scale-up of activities. Caiman House now monitors more beaches, they have increased their hatching facilities and they also monitor the consumption of turtle meat and eggs. The partnership is perfect, as SWM provides financial and technical support, and the community contributes with local knowledge.

“Our project has become a model for other communities in Rupununi,” Roberts said. “Sand Creek, another upstream community, has also embarked on a similar project. We give them advice because we have learned a lot from our experience.

Watch out for the first rains

While the Caiman House team is now well experienced in the hatching process, climate change still makes it difficult to predict the seasons.

“We are starting to see dramatic changes; the conditions in the Rupununi River are different and that means the beaches the turtles depend on are changing,” he said. It is increasingly difficult for us to predict the hatching season. And we have to collect the eggs before the river overflows again. The amount of rain this year was just insane!

The first rains alerted project members to an impending problem, as the level of the Rupununi River rose during the hatching season.

Roberts and his team moved quickly to collect the eggs and protect them from the floodwaters that rolled into their new hatching facilities. The beaches remained covered in water well past the hatching season, meaning there were no turtle hatchlings in the wild this year in Yupukari.

The project had better luck. Its hatching success rate has increased to 65%, with 560 turtles hatched and about 460 surviving. They released 200 and kept 260 to release at the next turtle festival. when they are older. Now that some of the turtles are mature, there is also a plan to see if they will mate in captivity.

Photo by Lucien Chauvin/FAO.
Photo by Nathalie Van Vliet/FAO.

Turtle talks and environmental education

The village hosts a turtle festival every year, usually in late March or early April. Now a major event in northern Rupununi, it attracts locals from nearby villages and media attention from the capital, Georgetown.

Although the pandemic interfered with the festival in 2020, it didn’t stop the project from releasing hatchlings into the river.

The turtle party remains an excellent way to raise awareness, but other activities are also gaining interest. One of the newest ideas is the “turtle talk” with wildlife club members. The Yupukari Animal Club is an after-school program restarting now that schools are reopening after the pandemic-induced hiatus.

“We teach children about turtles, their scientific name, their name in Macushi (the local language), what they eat, and biological facts about breeding and nesting,” he said.

From turtles to more wild animals

The success of the yellow-spotted river turtle project has locals calling for the protection of other species of turtles, endangered fish, such as the arapaima (Arapaima gigas), and the other Guyana giants, Roberts said.

SWM program camera traps provided to the Wildlife Club recently captured a giant armadillo (Priodontes maximus), something the village hadn’t seen in years. Much remains to be done to conserve wildlife in the region.

Sustainable wildlife management is a key component of Yupukari village livelihoods. Caiman House Conservation Projects contributes to a community cottage, born out of the village’s historic commitment to research and conservation.

“Tourism was born out of conservation,” he said. “We were able to create an industry and now people come here for the turtles, the caimans but also to observe the birds and other animals. It is a circle, research attracting tourists, tourism contributing to our lives and providing more resources for conservation.

The SWM program is an initiative of the Organization of African, Caribbean and Pacific States, funded by the European Union with co-funding from the French Global Environment Facility and the French Development Agency. It is implemented through a consortium partnership, which includes the Center for International Forestry Research, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, the French Center for Agricultural Research for International Development and the Wildlife Conservation Society.

(Visited 1 time, 1 visits today)

Copyright Policy:
We want you to share content from Forests News, which is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-SA 4.0) license. This means that you are free to redistribute our material for non-commercial purposes. All we ask is that you give Forests News the proper credit and link to the original Forests News content, indicate if edits have been made, and distribute your contributions under the same Creative Commons license. . You must notify Forest News if you republish, reprint or reuse our materials by contacting [email protected]

Dana Point Suing Nature Center on Blufftop Trail


The article you are about to read comes from our journalists doing their important job – investigating, researching and writing their stories. We want to provide informative and inspiring stories that connect you to the people, issues and opportunities within our community. Journalism requires a lot of resources. Today, our economic model has been interrupted by the pandemic; the vast majority of our advertisers’ activities have been impacted. This is why the PD time now looks to you for financial support. Learn more about our new Insider Program here. Thank you.

By Breeana Greenberg

The town of Dana Point is suing the Canter for Natural Lands Management (CNLM) for restricting access to a public trail it has managed on a 29-acre coastal reserve since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.

In a lawsuit filed Jan. 21, the town of Dana Point argued that the center, a nonprofit organization charged with protecting west coast reservations, illegally restricted public access to the summit of the Cliff Nature Trail and Dana Point Preserve.

“Put simply, the Center for Natural Lands Management is trying to keep the public out,” Dana Point Mayor Joe Muller said in a news release. “When we agreed to development on the headlands, we demanded, in return, public access to these beautiful trails and coastline for our residents and visitors.”

In a statement regarding the city’s lawsuit, the CNLM defended its decision to continue restricting access to the trail, citing scientific studies that have concluded that the sights, sounds and smells of visitors can harm protected species, especially when visitors go off the trail.

“We understand the public interest in walking the trail and intend to continue to provide public access,” CNLM said. “But it is also our responsibility to protect the sensitive natural resources along the coast, including endangered species which, unlike us and other hikers, have no other options for their well-being.”

Since its opening in April 2010, the Nature Trail has been accessible to the public from 7 a.m. to sunset, seven days a week. In response to the pandemic in March 2020, the city closed the public trails it manages and the CNLM closed nature trail at bluff summit for public safety.

In mid-May 2020, the City of Dana Point reopened its public trails in accordance with state and county health guidelines.

Beginning in mid-October 2020, the CNLM allowed limited public access from 9 a.m. to noon on Tuesdays and Thursdays, the lawsuit says. The lawsuit added that the city informed CNLM that the hours did not meet the requirements set out for the nonprofit organization for public use and requested that the trail’s operating hours return to 7 a.m. at sunset, seven days a week.

In mid-June, the CNLM increased the hours of operation of the trail to 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays. On June 18, 2021, the City of Dana Point issued CNLM a Notice of Violation to encourage the organization to resume normal trail hours of operation.

According to CNLM, the city fined the center $500 for each day the reserve is not open.

“Trying to protect these species while allowing the public to access them for their enjoyment has been a challenge for the Center,” the CNLM said in its statement. “When the trail on the reserve was closed in March 2020 due to COVID-related public health guidelines, center staff took the opportunity to review the volume of public access, impacts on the reserve and its resident species, and the growing scientific literature that has revealed the impacts of public trail use on natural areas.

In early September 2021, the CNLM filed a lawsuit, appealing city citations for the trail closure. The lawsuit filed by the Town of Dana Point is a counterclaim against CNLM.

CNLM argues instead that opening the trails from 7 a.m. until sunset puts the species that reside in the reserve at unnecessary risk when they are most vulnerable, at dawn and dusk.

The city’s lawsuit claims that any changes to the trail’s operating hours would require a coastal development permit.

The lawsuit also says the California Coastal Commission asserted in November 2021 that CNLM needed to apply for a Coastal Development Permit (CDP) from the city of Dana Point specifically for the purpose of changing hours of operation.

The Coastline Commission, according to the city’s lawsuit, said that without obtaining a CDP to set times that restrict public access to the trail, the CNLM is in violation of the Coastline Act.

“People want and need access to the outdoors and fresh air for walking, hiking, jogging and birdwatching,” Muller said. “This entire network of trails is essential to our city’s commitment. Although the city has issued numerous citations against CNLM over the past few months, CNLM was unwilling to honor our original agreement, which is why we are now forced to take this final step.

The town of Dana Point is seeking the maximum penalty allowed by coastal law: $15,000 per day that trail access was restricted. The lawsuit says the city is seeking a total of $9.18 million, reflecting 612 days and counting that the trail did not resume pre-COVID hours of operation.

In its press release, the CNLM said it is “considering adjusting hours of operation to provide more public access, and in this regard is consulting with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the California Department of Fish and Wildlife to refine its analysis of public access.”

Breeana Greenberg is the city reporter for the Dana Point Times. She graduated from Chapman University with a Bachelor of Arts in English. Prior to joining Picket Fence Media, she worked as a freelance journalist for the Laguna Beach Independent. Breeana can be reached by email at [email protected]

Trustworthy, accurate and reliable local news is more important than ever. Support our newsroom by making a contribution and becoming a subscriber today.

Mansfield Energy Announces Organization of Mansfield Service Partners


GAINESVILLE, Ga., February 1, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Mansfield Energy today announced the creation of Mansfield Service Partners, its national division of local service providers.

“Mansfield Service Partners brings together all of our fuel and lubricants businesses under one common brand,” said Rocky Dewbre, President and Chief Operating Officer of Mansfield Service Partners. “Our customers and suppliers will benefit from field service stations and Mansfield trucks on the roads in their markets, providing local service across a large and growing North American footprint.”

Situated at Houston, TX, Mansfield Service Partners consists of three operating regions: MSP South, MSP Midcon and MSP Rockies. Each region will utilize its own fleet of transportation assets and equipment services while leveraging Mansfield’s national supply network and logistics technology.

Mansfield Service Partners South, LLC, formerly O’Rourke Petroleum, is a distributor of lubricants, fuels and environmental services to land and marine customers. MSP Rockies and MSP Midcon complement MSP South’s service footprint and together these business units deploy hundreds of trucks to provide a competitive advantage to customers.

“Our growing portfolio of energy solutions and operations centers positions Mansfield as the partner of choice for customers of all sizes, geographies and service needs,” added Michael Mansfield, Sr., CEO of Mansfield Energy Corp. “The formation of Mansfield Service Partners assures customers in the central United States of local 24/7 service, backed by Mansfield’s scale and buying power.”

About Mansfield Energy

Since 1957, Mansfield Energy has provided innovative solutions to the nation’s most demanding energy supply and logistics challenges. Mansfield’s portfolio of products and services covers fuels, natural gas, diesel exhaust fluids, data management and price risk management tools. Supplying more than three billion gallons of fuel and related products each year, Mansfield operates an unparalleled network of suppliers, distributors and salespeople in every US state and Canadian province.

Zack’s wall
[email protected]

SOURCE Mansfield Energy Corp.

Iowa City Parks and Recreation in the early stages of the city’s recreation improvement plan


Iowa City Parks and Recreation’s Gather Here Recreation Master Plan will use public input to assess the public needs of certain facilities.

Grace Kreber

A playground sits in the snow at City Park in Iowa City on Monday, Jan. 27, 2022.

The Iowa City Department of Parks and Recreation is seeking public input on future improvement projects, as part of the Iowa City Gather Here Parks Recreation Master Plan.

The purpose of these Iowa City Parks and Recreation actions is to ask the community, through a survey, if the recreation facilities are still meeting their needs.

Iowa City Parks and Recreation is currently waiting to receive all public input to create the final plan.

One of the facilities that Iowa City Parks and Recreation wants to renovate is the city park pool, which was built in 1949 and is showing signs of deterioration.

Currently, Iowa City Parks and Recreation does not know what will happen to the pool, Parks and Recreation Director Juli Seydell Johnson said during an Iowa City Council business session Jan. 12.

“Pools don’t usually last that long and there are a number of behind-the-scenes issues that we put on some band-aids,” Iowa City Recreation Superintendent Brad Barker said. “It looks great for the public, but mechanically, behind the scenes, there are different issues, and so we need to start thinking about the future of what this pool looks like.”

Barker said another facility Iowa City Parks and Recreation wants to renovate is the aging Robert E. Lee Community Recreation Center.

“The public will use these resources, so I think we want to hear from them what we need and what will serve best,” Iowa City Councilwoman Laura Bergus said.

The Iowa City Council heard updates from Iowa City Parks and Recreation on the Gather Here Recreation Master Plan during their budget business sessions in January.

“We have received updates that they are currently in this evaluation process and are working with a consultant to engage the public and get the necessary feedback to help guide these renovations,” said Bergus said.

The Gather Here Recreation Master Plan, which was established last fall, will conduct a study of the current state of Iowa City’s parks and recreation facilities, such as the Robert E. Lee Recreation Center.

“We are trying to develop a roadmap for the future direction of our recreation facilities, programs and events,” Barker said.

Iowa City Parks and Recreation has used focus groups and community engagement events, Barker said, to try to gauge public opinion about what should be done for the facilities.

The Gather Here Recreation Master Plan has been in the works for some time, but had to be properly budgeted from Iowa City Parks operating funds before it could be implemented.

“We can start using it as a guide for how we handle programming and planning for special events and budgeting for facility upgrades,” Barker said.

The Iowa City Department of Parks and Recreation is writing a report and will officially adopt the plan this summer.

Why This American Girl Doll Inspires Environmental Activism | At the Smithsonian

Last September, the American Girl Company introduced the world to its new “World by Us” dolls, Latina soccer player Maritza Ochoa, fashion lover Makena Williams, who traces her heritage to Kenya, and rising activist Evette Peeters, who lives in the Washington, DC neighborhood east of the Anacostia River. In the dolls’ accompanying novels, Maritza, Makena, and Evette, all of whom live in the nation’s capital, work to address critical social issues including racism, immigration, and environmentalism.

I heard about the new dolls a year ago when the company contacted me to participate as an advisor. “We are beginning an exciting new project to support social justice and environmental activism related to the Anacostia River,” they wrote to me in an email.

Having heard about the environmental work being done at the Smithsonian’s Anacostia Community Museum (ACM), the American Girl team wanted to know if I would be willing to share some of the research and documentation done over the years and review two drafts of manuscripts. Pre-teen Evette Peeters lives with her mixed-race family and finds her life cut in half by the Anacostia River. Through her passionate activism, Evette strives to heal the place and the people she holds dearly, creating new friendships and mending strained relationships.

Why This American Doll Is Inspiring Environmental Activism

Characters Maritza Ochoa, Makena Williams and Evette Peeters all live in the nation’s capital and work to address critical social issues including racism, immigration and environmentalism.

Courtesy of American Girl

I didn’t need introductions; I still remember my first encounter with the American Girl doll experience. When I was eight, my mother left me with my grandmother in Barbados after moving to New York in search of a job. I remember the thrill of opening a care package she sent me containing the book about the experiences of Molly McIntire, a girl growing up on the American home front during World War II. I read it with delight. This first book became a collection after I moved to the United States a year later. I spent hours leafing through the American Girl catalog and after much pleading and pleading with my mother, who was hesitant to buy a doll that cost nearly $100, I raised enough money for my own doll from the Edwardian era, Samantha Parkington.

For me, consulting on the project was a careful balance. I weighed the nostalgia and memories of a naïve recently naturalized child against my personal and professional experiences as an adult, and the complexities and contradictions inherent in portraying and engaging with the American narrative. In other words, it was complicated.

A constant of public history work is the ongoing negotiations between cultural institutions and the communities they are meant to serve. We always make hard choices. What stories and experiences are reflected in these civic spaces? How? Why is this important?

American Girl sought to emphasize to its young audience the importance of being able to see themselves as part of the larger American story; and that vision requires more accessible stories, as well as models of civic engagement.

Children in a boat on the Anacostia River

The Anacostia River flows from suburban Maryland to the mouth of the Potomac River in downtown Washington, D.C., and has long separated neighborhoods of color from centers of power in the federal city, where the nation’s leaders have lived and governed.

Susana Raab, Anacostia Community Museum Archives

For more than half a century, ACM has maintained a deep connection with its surrounding neighborhood. The museum has been at the forefront of working with local and national communities to understand and address issues that underlie the complexities of identity, injustice and agency while helping its youngest visitors to understand their role in improving the community.

Founded in 1967 as the first federally funded community museum, the Anacostia Neighborhood Museum (as the ACM was then known) served as an extension of the community, a civic space in which visitors encountered their past, reflected honestly on their present, while working towards a more equitable future. This notion of the museum in total service to its community has been central to all of ACM’s subsequent work.

Why This American Doll Is Inspiring Environmental Activism

Anacostia Community Museum’s popular 2012 exhibit, “Reclaiming the Edge: urban waterways & civic engagement,” engaged local neighborhoods in their ongoing efforts to protect the river.

Susana Raab, Anacostia Community Museum Archives

In 2010, against the backdrop of the city’s restoration of the Anacostia River and development of its waterfront, ACM Senior Historian Gail S. Lowe decided to investigate this body of water, which has been, in many ways, a psychological and physical barrier in the city. The river, which flows from suburban Maryland to the mouth of the Potomac River in downtown DC, has long separated neighborhoods of color from the centers of power in the federal city where the nation’s leaders lived and governed. Some of the neighborhoods east of the river struggle with income inequality, food insecurity, housing shortages and environmental challenges.

The author of Evette’s story is Sharon Dennis Wyeth, a DC native who grew up east of the Anacostia River, a stone’s throw from Frederick Douglas’ house and across from his grandparents. Much like her characters, Evette and her grandmother, character “Gran E”, Sharon shared a close relationship with her “Nanna”. Sharon also has a deep connection to the river and its ecosystem. “The Anacostia River has been my most constant contact with nature. The river was powerful and beautiful; changing but always the.

“The Anacostia made me feel peaceful and also sparked my imagination. It was a reminder that there was a bigger world. My family also loved the river. We took our family photos there on special occasions. My grandfather used to fish there and I’m pretty sure he and my grandmother swam in one of the tributaries. This family tradition entered my book, as did my own love for the Anacostia River”.

Exploring how the Anacostia became the city’s “forgotten river” quickly became the focus of Lowe’s Urban Waterways project, which became the museum’s next bold challenge, exploring the psychological, social, economic, environmental costs and policies for people living along its banks, and dig into the history of these neighborhood communities. “When my character Evette discovers that the tributary her grandmother swam in has become polluted, she initially feels helpless,” Wyeth explains. “But when she discovers a group dedicated to cleaning up the river, she hires them to help organize a cleanup event.”

This same passion for the river fueled our first two years of research and culminated in the museum’s popular exhibition in 2012, “Reclaiming the Edge: Urban Waterways and Civic Engagement.” Ongoing work has since fostered the creation of workshops, community forums, a national symposium, an urban gardening program and a project newsletter.

Sharon Dennis Wyeth

Sharon Dennis Wyeth, the author of Evette’s story, is a DC native who grew up east of the Anacostia River, a stone’s throw from Frederick Douglas’ house and across from his grandparents.

Courtesy of Sharon Dennis Wyeth

“When they read Evette’s story, young people can feel empowered knowing that they too can make a difference.”

I became aware of the dynamic work of women across the United States, making contributions on topics ranging from environmental justice, advocating for the creation of city parks, creating more STEM pathways, and highlighting the practice culture as a form of defense of the environment. What if we could get these national activists to talk to local leaders?

In March 2018, with support from the Smithsonian’s American Women’s History Initiative, the Women’s Environmental Leadership (WEL) initiative was launched. With the aim of building capacity for the next steps in environmental leadership and guided by the themes of mentorship, education, training and leadership, 60 participants, representing over a century of environmental leadership, came together for a one-day summit, where they met not only as professionals, but also as representatives of an intersection of communities affected and engaged in environmental issues.

This powerful female-centric meeting helped foster the narrative goals Wyett was seeking for Evette Peters’ story. Through her love of family and concern for places along the Anacostia that have special meaning to them, Evette exemplifies the agency that was at the heart of the summit.

The group leaders saw the reason for a second gathering, and through discussions, workshops, and a series of oral histories, their work helped develop a publication for middle school audiences, titled Women, ecologist and justice, which aims to empower young girls.

Women's Environmental Leadership Summit

Seeking to empower young girls, the Women’s Environmental Leadership (WEL) initiative, launched in 2018 (above), developed the publication aimed at college audiences Women, ecologist and justice.

Susana Raab, Anacostia Community Museum Archives

“The cleanup event I describe in the book, featuring Evette and her friends with the rest of the team,” Wyett explains, “was inspired by what I had learned about current efforts at DC from on the part of large organizations as well as community environmental groups to restore the Anacostia to full health.

Even though Wyett grew up in DC, she hadn’t lived there for years. It was through ACM’s research that she was able to get an update on the river and its community. “The work of the museum alerted me to the organizations involved in the restoration of the Anacostia, the goals for cleaning up the river and the progress that had been made. An introduction to neighborhood environmentalist Dennis Chestnut, who had his own connection to ACM, was also key. Dennis has worked on behalf of the river since his own childhood. Having a real conversation with someone who was “walking the right path” was both informative and affirming.

Ultimately, Wyett sees Evette’s story as a model for young readers to take action and find a common cause that can unite all communities. “A river unites different places and different people. When they read about Evette’s story and how she is making a difference, some of these young people might feel empowered knowing that they too can make a difference.

Learn Your Trees on a Hike in the Lake Katharine Preserve in Jackson County

Learn Your Trees on a Hike in the Lake Katharine Preserve in Jackson County

The Chillicothe region is full of public parks, but have you ever visited those in neighboring Jackson Country?

Lake Katharine State Nature Reserve home to over 60 tree species…including the Umbrella and Bigleaf magnolias, at the northern edge of their ranges.

This Saturday, check out your trees on a guided hike there, just northwest of the town of Jackson. Join Natural Areas and Preserves Division staff with Dave Apsley (Forester with OSU Extension) and Roger Donaldson (Jackson City Library Director) for a guided hike discussing the basics of tree identification in the field.

You are encouraged to bring binoculars and you will receive a document for the moderately difficult hike.

Meet at the main Lake Katharine parking lot at 10am on February 5th. Registration is requested by emailing the reserve manager at [email protected] or by calling 740/286-2487.

The address is 1703 Lake Katharine Rd. Jackson, Ohio 45640.

Botanists report that the Umbrella and Bigleaf magnolias are at the northern limit of their range on the Allegheny Plateau.

Their distribution in Ohio conforms very well to the preglacial drainage lines of the Teays River and its major tributaries. The plant most likely reached Ohio in preglacial times by seeds carried along this river.

They have interesting adaptations to ensure cross-pollination. They are pollinated by beetles, which feed on various parts of flowers.

Local childhood cancer organization plans run and walk for February


A local organization hopes to support families and children battling childhood cancer with a superhero-themed run in late February.

The Smiles From Heaven, led by the Bella Strong organization, organizes a 5K run and walk to raise awareness and funds for children battling childhood cancer. One of the group’s founders and leaders said that as they prepare to host, they are also looking for sponsors and ways to motivate the community to attend the event.

“The SFH Superheroes 5K, taking place in North Central Park on February 26, will be our first-ever annual 5K,” said Ray Sanchez, co-founder and president of Smiles From Heaven. “We will join forces with the community to save our children from cancer, because no child should fight cancer alone. There’s a saying carved into my heart that goes, “Sometimes real superheroes live in the hearts of little kids fighting big battles,” and I agree 100%. Kids battling cancer are the real superheroes.

For Sanchez, his personal superhero is his daughter Bella Sanchez, who died of childhood cancer in April 2019. Ultimately, her death is what inspired the Sanchez family to create the Bella Strong organization as well as SFH. They have become very active over the past year organizing events to bring the community together to raise awareness and funds for childhood cancer.

Their main goal is to hopefully one day see the establishment of a pediatric cancer hospital in the city.

“My personal superhero Bella is now in heaven, but I am committed to continuing her mission here on earth fighting alongside other little superheroes through our work with Smiles From Heaven,” Sanchez said. “This walk/run is about showing our local cancer warriors that they are not alone and that the community is there to fight with them.”

Runners who attend the race and show their support will not only be able to show they are there, but will also be able to earn a medal if they place in the top three.

“Not only will the community be able to show their support, but the top three race times from each division will have a chance to win an awesome SFH Superhero Medal,” Sanchez said.

Sanchez also says that 150 superhero shirts and capes will also be distributed on a first-come, first-served basis to children and people who attend. He hopes the event will be a success like others they have held in recent months.

The SFH president says all proceeds raised will go directly to funding some of the basic needs of parents whose children have childhood cancer. He also mentions that people attending the run and walk can go in their superhero attire, which would be greatly appreciated for anyone who shows up.

“All proceeds from the event will go to our programs to continue to help children and their families affected by childhood cancer and blood disorders,” Sanchez said. “I also want to mention that local superheroes/cancer warriors will be at the event with their awesome costumes. We encourage the community to also come in superhero attire.

Sanchez says the event is still less than a month away, he’s also looking for active sponsors who would like to be part of the event and support the cause. He says these sponsors will be able to showcase their brand and logo while helping to facilitate funds for the good cause.

“All of our sponsors will be on our t-shirts, banners and photo backgrounds,” Sanchez said. “SFH is a 501c(3) non-profit organization that is qualified to receive tax-deductible donations.”

Ultimately, however, Sanchez wants people to attend the event and show their support, as childhood cancer is a serious and persistent problem for various families in the cities who often have to deal with the problem alone and out of town. He hopes the support will extend to this march as there have been many other events where people turn up in large numbers.

“Finally, I want to thank everyone who supported Smiles From Heaven,” Sanchez said. “Thanks to you, we’ve officially been serving children and families for two years now, and were recently rated a ‘Top Nonprofit’ by Great Nonprofits, the leading nonprofit community story platform. Thank you and hope to see everyone at the event.

The five-kilometre run and walk is scheduled for Saturday, February 26 in North Central Park starting at 6 a.m. for early registrants. Right now the early bird fee is $20 and people can do it by go to their site and register.

Sanchez says anyone interested in becoming an official sponsor of the event can do so by contacting Sanchez at [email protected] He can also be contacted there for more information about the event and others that the SFH hosts or participates in.

[email protected]

Winter storm Kenan dumps over a foot of snow in parts of New York


Winter storm Kenan hit New York on Friday and Saturday, dumping more than a foot of snow in parts of the city.

The heaviest snowfall had left the tri-state area by 7 p.m. Saturday night as the storm moved north and battered parts of eastern New England.

Most snowfall in the Big Apple was between 7 and 10 inches, such as Central Park which saw 8.3 inches, according to Accuweather meteorologist Alan Reppert. Some neighborhoods in Queens, however, saw more than 12 inches, he said.

Bayside had one of the biggest accumulations, with 13.1 inches recorded at 7 p.m. Saturday night. Middle Village was hit with 12.7 inches and JFK Airport saw a measured total of 12.6 inches, according to Accuweather totals.

In Brooklyn, the heaviest accumulation was recorded at Bay Ridge, which came within a foot at 11 inches.

The National Weather Service chart shows total snowfall across the East in areas affected by Winter Storm Kenan.
National Weather Service

Woodrow in Staten Island measured a peak accumulation of 9.9 inches in the borough.

In the Bronx, 9.1 inches were recorded at Throgs Neck.

Long Island was hit hardest by Kenan as it moved up the Atlantic coast, with accumulations of more than 20 inches recorded in parts of Suffolk County, with Deer Park measuring 21 inches of snow.

The Jersey Shore was also hard hit, with 19.5 inches recorded at Beachwood in Ocean County.

According to FlightAware, 4,831 flights were canceled across the United States on Saturday. Nearly 2,000 flights were grounded for travelers on Sunday.

Reppert told the Post that the main concerns for Saturday night remained wind gusts to 40 mph.

“The winds will remain quite strong throughout the night, we still expect to blow and redirect the snow that has fallen,” he said. “There may be a few showers around…but it looks like the majority of the storm is over.”

Vidhur Senthil: Teaching students to take care of the environment is essential

This year, approximately 50 million students will attend elementary and secondary school in the United States. Every morning, when I and millions of others struggle to get out of bed, wondering if it’s really necessary to wake up so early, it’s obvious that we have no other choice.

School is the one thing we all have in common. It’s where we learn fascinating subjects, meet new people, and most importantly, prepare ourselves with skills and habits that we hope to use for the rest of our lives.

If school plays such an important role in our childhood, shouldn’t our government, which makes our education compulsory, do its best to teach us what we need to become better citizens?

If the answer is yes, what does it mean to be a “better citizen”? I’m sure there are many criteria, but for me and a growing number of people, having knowledge about the environment is one of them.

Future generations will be the ones facing serious climate-related issues, and if schools don’t teach it properly now, there will be a significant learning disparity in the future when these issues become more apparent.

In a world where environmental issues are so controversial, wouldn’t an educated generation help alleviate the chaos while empowering those who are threatened by environmental dangers? Yes, but it depends on how it’s done.

Many people think that environmental education can be too extreme. Some schools teach children pessimistic views about their interactions with the environment. The idea that “we must act now” creates more panic than learning. Many parents, especially those working in fields that contribute to global emissions, are concerned about this environmentalist bias. Others think our environmental interactions are normal and shouldn’t be a concern.

The challenge of teaching students about the environment has become more important than ever. Our goal shouldn’t be to scare them away, but rather to help them understand a need for improvement.

To do this, students need to have a thorough understanding of their ecological footprint. Teaching concepts such as reducing, reusing, recycling, decreasing the use of single-use plastics and the impact of food on global emissions will empower them to decide what they can do to be more eco-friendly. the environment.

When dealing with controversial topics, it is crucial to allow students to develop their own perspectives. Take fracking, for example. Instead of starting with the negatives, the topic should be introduced by talking about how almost all of us depend on it to heat our homes, generate electricity and power our vehicles. Then the discussion can move on to the question of why hydraulic fracturing cannot be a long-term solution for sustainable energy production.

Suppose one day we can provide students with multiple perspectives, facts, and rationales for understanding our environmental interactions. So what merit will those who oppose environmental education have in asserting their claims?

In 2020, New Jersey became the first state to make climate change education mandatory for K-12 students. As Pennsylvania and other states develop their action plans, I hope they work hard to create a program that works – one based on facts, not opinions. Only then will we have succeeded in producing a generation ready to face the problems that are yet to come.

New York State man leads police in chase that ends on airport runway


it’s like something straight out of a movie. CBS reports that one of the craziest police chases in recent memory has ensued after a man with three active warrants allegedly robbed a local Macy’s department store on Thursday. Apparently he’s got quite a history, including a few run-ins here in the Hudson Valley.SCS says the suspect was charged with bank robbery in the city of Ulster as recently as May 2021. How do these people keep getting out of jail?

Shortly after, this brazen suspect led police on a senseless chase that saw him flee in a vehicle he allegedly stole from a Stewart’s parking lot. But it continues to improve.

Police say it all started after the 27-year-old Colonie robbed a jewelry counter at a nearby Macy’s. On leaving the store, he even allegedly threatened an employee with a knife, who allegedly tried to stop him from shoplifting. Officials say the suspect jumped into the stolen sedan and attempted to drive away. When police attempted to arrest him, the suspect did the unthinkable by crashing the stolen vehicle through one of the Albany International Airport fences and rolling down one of the runways.

We don’t know if he suddenly thought he was 007 and hoped to somehow take this sedan into the air? Was he thinking of jumping on one of the flights? CBS says the chase continued after he crashed through another fence on the other side of the airport, before abandoning his ride at the Pepsi Beverage Company. Police say they later found him in another company’s parking lot, so his foot pursuit didn’t take him too far. He was eventually arrested, ending this alleged jewelry theft and attempted escape.

As you might expect, the suspect faces multiple charges.

Discover the must-see roads in each state

LET’S GO: America’s Most Popular Historic Sites

KEEP READING: Here are the best places to retire in America

UP NEXT: Find out how much gas cost the year you started driving

25 Hudson Valley Locations Featured In Movies

The Hudson Valley or the New Hollywood? The Hudson Valley has been featured in many movies over the years, and it doesn’t stop. Recent hits like A Quiet Place (2018) to modern classic movies like The Departed (2006), The Hudson Valley has been an understated hotspot for locations. Thanks to tax incentives, beautiful locations, and the growth of independent cinema, the Hudson Valley will continue to thrive as a valuable destination for filmmakers.

So we’ve compiled a list of 25 Hudson Valley locations featured in the film. This list also includes blockbuster hits and independent films. We hope you enjoy reading and learning more about the Hudson Valley and the movies!

What are the emblematic drinks of each state?

Faith-Based Organizations and Nonprofits in Montgomery County Receive Funding to Improve Safety | WDVM25 and DCW50


MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Md. (WDVM) – Montgomery County is stepping up to help faith-based organizations and nonprofits at risk of committing hate crimes by providing $700,000 in grants to improve their safety.

Montgomery County is the only jurisdiction in the state that now provides funding to faith-based and nonprofit organizations to improve their security needs to protect against hate crimes.

“It’s important that people feel that going to a place of worship or going to a nonprofit doesn’t mean you’re putting your life at risk,” County Executive Marc Elrich said.

Faith leaders say they come in particular on the heels of the horrific hostage-taking at a synagogue in Texas, the recent vandalism at a mosque here in the community and acts of violence against Asian Americans across the country, ensuring security is their top priority.

“It confronts the trend evident in America today to inhibit self-radicalized hateful individuals who feel compelled to act violently against various groups in our society, which is a direct attack on our national values,” Ron said. Halber, executive director of the JCRC of Greater Washington.

The county also offers courses, training and police security assessments so organizations know how to respond to threats.

“Our congregation needs the support, the support systems that we can provide a wonderful and safe environment for our children,” said Dr. Rajwant Singh, chairman of the Sikh Council on Religion and Education.

County Executive Marc Elrich says this program will also be included in their next budget and will continue for years to come.

Artistic design for Abolitionist Place in Brooklyn moves forward


New York City is moving forward with an artwork to celebrate the abolitionist movement that some critics say is too abstract in a city where so few monuments honor black people with figurative sculptures.

The city plan features a design by artist Kameelah Janan Rasheed that incorporates social justice messages into the benches and curbs of a new $15 million park in Brooklyn named Abolitionist Place.

The site belongs to a corner of downtown Brooklyn that adjoins 227 Duffield Street, which was given landmark status last year for its connection to anti-slavery advocates of the 1800s.

The city’s Public Design Commission said it filed the design plan discussion last January, after a group of conservationists and activists said they believed the plan should feature the statuary of abolitionists. But in September, the city said it was moving forward with the design, prompting a legal challenge filed that month by critics who asked a judge to review the city’s approval process.

“We’re frustrated,” said Jacob Morris, the historian challenging the decision of the Public Design Commission, which reviews all permanent monuments on city property. He said the agency violated its own rules by refusing to hear additional public testimony before voting for concept approval of the $689,000 project at a meeting in September.

“It’s our last resort,” Morris added.

For several years, Morris and others worked to erect a figurative sculpture called “Sisters in Freedom” at the same location in downtown Brooklyn. It would honor historically significant black women like investigative journalist Ida B. Wells and educator and abolitionist Sarah J. Garnet.

When he was Brooklyn Borough President, New York City Mayor Eric Adams backed the traditional monument that Morris would like to see built. In 2019, Adams penned a letter to city officials saying the artwork would “further elevate these wonderful, empowered women in our consciousness.”

A spokeswoman for the mayor, Amaris Cockfield, did not respond to questions about her position on the decision to carry out a more abstract effort at Abolitionist Place.

City officials said the installation plan for Rasheed’s work is not yet final and announced the artist began hosting online community engagement sessions this week to hear thoughts. on its design. Additionally, the Public Design Commission said it would continue to review the design and solicit public comment.

“We plan to have another public hearing on this when he returns for a preliminary review,” Keri Butler, the agency’s executive director, said by email.

An expert on the city’s public design approval process said she thinks the court challenge to the commission’s approval last fall faces an uphill battle.

A legal challenge to return the monument to open court “seems a little extreme,” said Michele H. Bogart, an art historian who specializes in the city’s public works. “He’s trying to force them to change the way they operate, to make room for more public comment.”

Shawné Lee, whose family fought to preserve the neighborhood’s abolitionist history, supports the lawsuit. “I would like to see the Public Design Commission change its process and become more inclusive for the community,” she said. “Art is a form of expression, but do you allow us to express our concerns?”

The park in which the abolitionist works will be presented is managed by the city’s economic development agency and the design has been validated by the Department of Cultural Affairs.

Rasheed, a former public school teacher whose text banners adorned the facade of the Brooklyn Museum, penned a project that includes a freestanding sculpture, mosaic reliefs and social justice messages spread across the park.

Kendal Henry, assistant commissioner for public art in the city’s Department of Cultural Affairs, called the artist’s vision “deeply rooted in collaboration.”

“We welcome input from anyone in good faith who wishes to work with their neighbors to create a monument,” Henry added in a statement.

Earlier this week, Rasheed, in one of his online sessions, spoke to the public and explained that community input will determine many essential elements of his installation, such as the texts. “We can only do this if we can respect each other,” she said.

She later sent The New York Times a statement in which she said, “I want to be mindful of creating something that invites conversation, rather than stating historical facts.”

She said Morris and others were misrepresenting her work.

The questions and texts that will be used in the work “are designed to spark discussion,” Rasheed said. “And I’m thrilled that this project isn’t and never will be the only abolition project in Brooklyn.”

MAGA contestant Kimberly Lowe filmed threatening Texas border butterfly sanctuary

Marianne Wright was halfway through a conference call on Jan. 21 when she received a startling message from her son.

Two women were on their property and asked her son to open a door so that they could go and see “illegals crossing on rafts”. The women, Wright later claimed in an affidavit, said they were a congressional candidate and a Secret Service agent.

“Immediately we knew what it was,” Wright told The Daily Beast on Thursday. “It was an echo and reiteration of the lies Steve Bannon’s ‘Rebuild The Wall’ campaign published and promoted against us for years.”

Wright is the executive director of the National Butterfly Center, a private nature preserve in the Rio Grande Valley in Texas. The center is a sanctuary for hundreds of butterfly species and a frequent target for conspiracy theorists after Wright and his colleagues opposed plans by the Trump administration to build a border wall in the middle of the property.

But after last week’s bizarre showdown with congressional candidate Kimberly Lowe, the National Butterfly Center is closing Jan. 28-Jan. including Lowe’s) on a border excursion.

Although the National Butterfly Center is located in Texas, Donald Trump’s proposed wall would stretch two miles north of the US-Mexico border, bisecting protected land. In 2019, the center filed a restraining order against the construction project. This court record has made the center a far-right fixation.

A Trumpist group, the Bannon-backed “We Build the Wall” campaign, has targeted the center with conspiracy theories. Brian Kolfage, a leader of the group, tweeted several times that the National Butterfly Center housed an illegal sex trade and dead bodies.

“The only butterflies we saw were swarming over a rotting body surrounded by tons of rotting trash left behind by illegals,” he tweeted in 2019. Kolfage was not party neutral. His “We Build the Wall” raised over $25 million claiming he would build Trump’s border wall. (The federal government says the scheme was illegal. Kolfage and his business associates have since been charged with conspiracy to commit wire fraud and conspiracy to launder money.)

In late 2019, conspiracy theorists were circulating memes falsely accusing the National Butterfly Center of being a front for sex traffickers. Wright and his colleagues were threatened in person by members of militias like the Oath Keepers and the Three Percenters, as well as threatening phone calls and emails from a man who turned out to be a Texas police officer.

So when Wright’s son, Nicholas, called her about two women who had trespassed on National Butterfly Center property on January 21, Wright guessed they were affiliated with the conspiracy theory.

Nicholas “stated that one of the women claimed to be running for Congress and the other claimed to be from the Secret Service,” Wright wrote in an affidavit, reviewed by The Daily Beast. “I asked him to get their names. He came back to tell me I could find her on “Kimberly Lowe for Congress” on Facebook. I started looking for her and the first thing in her Facebook feed was a Facebook Live video of the two women, streaming with kids in the car, driving down Scheurbach Road, south of Military, on what is officially ‘Butterfly Park Dr.'”

“Get out of my way. jesus christ”

— Congressional candidate Kimberly Lowe

Although Lowe, a longtime congressional candidate from Virginia, deleted some Facebook videos of her trip to the butterfly center, one remaining video shows her driving near the center and announcing her intention to drive through a gate. In a video, early on the 21st, Lowe and his colleague “Michelle” watch as Border Patrol agents detain migrants, while Lowe describes himself as armed.

“I have my 9mm just sitting right here,” she says in a video.

In her affidavit, Wright said she approached Lowe and Michelle and informed them that they were trespassing on private property. An audio recording, shared with The Daily Beast, reveals part of the confrontation.

“You are here to promote your agenda, and your agenda is not welcome here,” Wright says on the recording.

“You are not to keep illegals out?” Michelle replies.

“So you’re not for helping all these poor people in the humanitarian crisis? Lowe adds. “You are okay with children being sex trafficked, raped and murdered.”

When Lowe asks the couple to leave, Michelle claims the Border Patrol told them they could enter the property and that “I’m Federal – I work for the Secret Service, so nothing’s off limits for me.”

As Wright mocks Michelle’s claim, Lowe appears to start narrating a video. “So we’re here with a woman who’s not a very nice person who’s okay that kids—”

The audio cuts out when Wright knocks or takes Lowe’s phone. “You didn’t take my fucking phone,” Lowe said.

In his affidavit, Wright said, “Lowe had his phone up and appeared to be filming me. Since Bannon, Kolfage, the Neo-Nazi, Hardy Lloyd and their various media published and broadcast images of me and threats against the center, me and my children, I panicked. I moved to stop him from doing this, either punching or taking his phone away from him and retreating inside the building to wait for the police.

According to Wright’s affidavit and audio recording, someone pushed her to the ground. “Fuck you, bitch,” one of the visiting women shouts. A fight ensues, after which Wright accuses the women of taking his phone and refusing to return it. The women leave as another Butterfly Center worker says to call 911.

In Lowe’s now-deleted Facebook Live video reviewed by The Daily Beast, Lowe and Michelle return to their car, where Michelle claims to have Wright’s phone. In his affidavit, Wright said his son went to close the door to the center to prevent the couple from leaving with the device. She says Lowe almost hit her son while speeding towards the door.

In his deleted video, Lowe appears to be heading towards someone, presumably Wright’s son.

“Get out of my way,” the congressional candidate said. “Get out of my fucking way. Get the hell out of my way. Jesus Christ.”

Contacted for comment, Lowe denied Wright’s account of events.

“In short, this woman verbally and physically abused us,” Lowe wrote in an email, “stole my phone, kidnapped us and tried to stop us from leaving, and filed a false police report that the police have already found it wrong and when they couldn’t make me understand anything because it’s purely a political attack they are now making up more stories saying that I tried to hit her son when he ran towards the door to lock us in and blocked the exit with his outstretched arms. I didn’t try to hit him!

Lowe offered to send the Daily Beast her footage of the incident, but later said she was unable to, citing too large a file size.

Asked about Michelle’s claims to be a Secret Service agent, Lowe wrote, “I think the woman [Wright] Michelle didn’t tell. (Michelle speaks in a southern accent, distinct from Wright’s. On the audio recording, Wright can be heard calling Michelle’s claim “hilarious.”)

Lowe also accused Wright of making her social media followers. But although Wright alluded to the incident in a recent newsletter, in which she announced the temporary closure of the Butterfly Center, she did not name Lowe or provide identifying details about him.

Instead, the Butterfly Center attributed its upcoming closure to the three-day “We Stand America” rally, which Lowe promoted on Twitter. The event, which will take place near McAllen, Texas, will feature far-right speakers like former national security adviser Mike Flynn. The rally runs from Friday to Sunday and culminates in a “caravan to the border,” where participants will stage a four-hour rally.

Wright said the event puts the Butterfly Center in the crosshairs.

She said she consulted a friend, who is involved in local Republican politics, who warned her to “be armed at all times, or better yet out of town; that we shouldn’t even be in the center because they had planned caravans to go to the border.

The National Butterfly Center will be closed for the weekend. But Wright said the temporary closure was part of a long-term toll taken from a facility that should be focused on protecting wildlife.

“It’s become very difficult to focus on our conservation and environmental education efforts,” she said.

This sneaky Microsoft Excel malware could put your organization at risk of attack


Although Microsoft Excel has long been the go-to program for distributing malware among professionals, a new campaign uncovered by experts at HP Wolf Security has gone even further.

Based on an analysis of data from “several million endpoints running HP Wolf Security”, the past 12 months has seen a 588% increase in the use of Excel add-ins (.xll) to distribute malware.

Researchers say this technique is particularly dangerous because victims only need one click to compromise their devices.

Clear availability

Advertisements for an .xll dropper and malware builder have also started appearing in underground markets, according to the report, making it easy for low-level attackers to launch campaigns with devastating consequences.

To distribute the malware, some attackers have resorted to a particularly devious method: hijacking ongoing chat threads. After compromising an email account, they won’t just send a new email to the contact list – they’ll just share a malicious Excel file in an already running thread, greatly improving the chances of success.

Italians attacked

Furthermore, Excel files were also used in the recent distribution of the Ursnif banking trojan among Italian-speaking users.

In this campaign, the attackers impersonated the Italian courier service BRT. Additionally, new campaigns have been spotted delivering Emotet via Excel, rather than JavaScript or Word.

To ensure their premises remain secure, IT teams should refrain from relying exclusively on detection and antivirus solutions, warns Alex Holland, Principal Malware Analyst, HP Wolf Threat Research Team Security, HP Inc.

“Attackers are continually innovating to find new techniques to evade detection, so it is vital that companies plan and adjust their defenses based on the threat landscape and the business needs of their users. Threat actors have invested in techniques such as email thread hijacking, making it harder than ever for users to tell friend from foe.

  • You can also consult our list of best firewalls at present

Santa Ana Park Welcome Program to provide rent-free housing in Thornton Park

SANTA ANA, Calif. (KABC) — Four dozen candidates are being considered to be the person or family to live rent-free in a 5th-wheel RV at a Santa Ana park.

The city’s parks hospitality program will begin with a trial at Thornton Park.

Lisa Rudloff, executive director of parks and recreation and community services, said it was something she had seen working with the city of Encinitas, where she previously worked.

“Free utilities, they can have a job, but in exchange, we’d like them to be the ambassador for the park, you know, to create those relationships with the community,” Rudloff said.

Additionally, the host could address some of the issues found in city parks. “There’s vandalism, there’s graffiti and not very positive things happening in the parks,” Rudloff said.

MORE ABC7 SOLUTIONS | One city’s approach to helping the homeless could be a model for other neighborhoods

If the pilot program works, Santiago, Centennial and two other parks will follow.

The department has five nearly new fifth wheels to use, thanks to federal funding. They were previously used in homeless shelters to isolate people who tested positive for COVID-19.

“We’re going to deep clean them before somebody comes in and uses them, we’re going to go out there and we’re going to set it up,” Rudloff said.

Along with plans for new amenities and events at Santa Ana parks, city staff said they want someone to keep tabs on things and help keep parks active to deter crime.

Rudloff said the host will have access to park security, rangers and police, when they see fit.

Some of the fifth wheels can expand to accommodate families with multiple children and immigration status will not be in question.

Copyright © 2022 KABC Television, LLC. All rights reserved.

Shirley Griffin Obituary (1946 – 2022) – Lancaster, MA

Dr. Shirley Libby Griffin, 75

Oakmont Regional Science Educator and Environmental Education Consultant

LANCASTER – Dr. Shirley Libby Griffin, of 252 Fort Pond Inn Road Lancaster, MA died Jan. 19 at home after a long battle with endometrial cancer.

Dr. Griffin was born on November 4, 1946 in Ayer, MA, the daughter of Vernon Harcourt Griffin and Shirley Hatch Griffin. She is survived by her husband of 34 years, Thomas J. Christopher, her daughter-in-law Kelly C. Christopher and her husband Robin Bloodworth of Decatur, Georgia. She also leaves behind many “Hatch cousins”; Rhonda, Timothy, William, Clifford, “Hap”, David, Jimmy, Norma and Harriet.

Dr. Griffin was educated at Shirley and Ayer schools. She graduated from Fitchburg State College with a major in science education (biology) in 1968, and also earned a master’s degree in guidance education in 1970. She completed her doctoral studies in environmental science education at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst in 1982. Prior to her doctoral studies, she attended advanced courses at Syracuse University immersed in courses in ecology and forestry.

Dr. Griffin taught at Oakmont Regional High School in Ashburnham-Westminster, MA for fifty years in a distinguished career that has spanned beyond and influenced more than three generations of students. While at Oakmont, she was one of the pioneers of environmental education in New England, developing the award-winning “Environmental Survival” program. For ten years, she and her students traveled and lived in the Florida Everglades during spring school breaks to study the impacts of development on sensitive South Florida ecosystems. Its curriculum expanded when Dr. Griffin created additional courses that included land use planning, environmental science, ecology, global environmental issues, field botany, and wildlife management.

By helping her students understand why the environment matters in land use decisions, the critical thinking skills developed in her class have facilitated their ability to make good choices for their cities and their world. Its students have been successful in many environmental careers. Others stayed in their communities to serve on boards and commissions making decisions shaping the future of their community. She left a legacy of environmental stewardship to all of her students.

Public service was an important part of Dr. Griffin’s life. Ms. Griffin was a member of the Shirley Town Conservation Commission for fifteen years, serving as Chair for five years and her leadership permanently protected over 600 acres of open space in her community. She was director of the MA. Association of Conservation Commissions for nine years and volunteer with the MA Department of Environmental Affairs developing programs and activities for teachers using Geographic Information System technology. Dr. Griffin and other professionals have worked with the MA’s Executive Office of Environmental Affairs to establish statewide standards for environmental education. She has also served as a trustee on the board of the MA Environmental Education Society. In her early community environmental work, Shirley also worked with Marion Stoddard and others for the protection of the Nashua and Squannacook rivers.

Taking a year off, in 1987 Dr. Griffin worked with the environmental consulting firm IEP Inc. to develop a training manual titled Clearwater Estates for the MA Dept. of Environmental Protection. This publication has helped members of Conservation Commissions across Massachusetts understand the application of the Wetland Protection Act. She worked with other specialists during her time at IEP to gain field skills in identifying wetland plants. Dr. Griffin has participated in programs at Tufts University Lincoln-Filene Center for Citizenship and Public Affairs Environmental Leadership Training Institute.

Based on his government, professional, and community environmental work, in 1992 Dr. Griffin authored and published Ecolands, a land use and planning curriculum for use by educators involved in teaching the environmental curriculum. She was a frequent keynote speaker, guest speaker, and consultant at a multitude of environmental conferences throughout New England for many years.

In 1988, Dr. Griffin was named a “Lucretia Crocker Fellow” by the MA Dept. of Education in recognition of his outstanding service and contributions to education in Massachusetts and spent a year with other selected teachers traveling to other schools to share his environmental program and other teacher programs with d other educators. In 1999, Dr. Griffin received the “Christa McAuliffe Fellowship Award” named in honor of the teacher/astronaut who lost her life in the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster, and the following year as part of the “Christa McAuliffe Fellowship Program”, was presented with the “McAuliffe Certificate of Honor” from the Massachusetts and US Dept. of Education in Washington, D.C.

Dr. Griffin’s knowledge and expertise was not limited to the classroom, and as a land-use consultant in the private sector, she was a pioneer in introducing developers and builders to the concept of in clusters” to preserve open spaces, protect sensitive environments and reduce the cost of roads and infrastructure. Land use and subdivision plans were used in her classroom to help students understand the importance of land use choices and their effects on communities.

Dr. Griffin especially enjoyed the time spent traveling with her husband and together they hiked trails in Maine, Cape Breton Island, Italy’s Abruzzo National Park, Yellowstone and all over the United States. She had a passion for nature photography and wildlife observation, and her photographic perspective was unique in its subject choice and presentation. Together with Tom, they designed and built their home in Fort Pond and continued to enjoy the beauty and sounds of nature that surrounded their sanctuary.

Shirley has always said her greatest achievement in life was sharing her love of the environment with high school kids. She loved working with students and found it to be the most inspiring and fulfilling part of her life… introducing them to the intricacies of the natural world.

Throughout her life and career, Dr. Griffin has demonstrated a love for the environment and a passion for teaching her students to understand the natural world around them. Her service and commitment to environmental education has been recognized by the MA’s Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs and she was honored in 1999, 2001 and 2007 with “Excellence in Environmental Education” awards. Certificate of Merit” and “First Honours”. As a cornerstone of her education career, in 2016 Dr. Griffin was inducted into the Massachusetts Science Teacher’s Hall of Fame, and her class was dedicated to “Dr. Shirley Griffin Lab & Greenhouse” for her contributions to students at Oakmont Regional High School.

A celebration of life will take place in the spring when the weather is warm. The burial will be private.

As a lover of all animals, donations in her memory may be made to: Ahimsa Haven Animal Rescue 381 Baldwinville Road, Templeton, MA 01468. www.richardsonfuneralhome.net

View the online memorial for Shirley L. Griffin

Published by Sentinel & Enterprise on January 27, 2022.

Group lobbying for more mountain bike trails in the Beaufort region


Members of a new group pushing for more mountain bike trails in the Beaufort region say a Beaufort County-owned passive park on Lady’s Island would be ideal — but the county doesn’t think so.

“We’re just trying to get the county interested,” says Joe Mac, owner of University Bikes on Boundary Street in Beaufort and a member of the Beaufort Trailblazers.

The request comes as Beaufort County prepares to launch a major study of its recreational facilities and gather input from the public. But at this time, the county says it hasn’t planned mountain bike trails in passive parks such as Pineview Preserve, which Beaufort Trailblazers favors for bike trails.

Beaufort Trailblazers collected 100 signatures supporting a single-track mountain bike trail in Pineview. Off-road singletracks, which are 2 to 6 feet wide, are less intrusive to the environment and wildlife and don’t require a mountain of dirt, Mac says.

Mac would like to see a local mountain bike trail system similar to the well-designed and popular Whitemarsh Reservation in Savannah. This 145 acre park includes 6 miles of single track trails.

Whitemarsh, Mac says, is extremely popular with hikers, runners and cyclists.

“If you build it,” Mac said, “they will come.”

mountain bike Joe Mac.jpg
Joe Mac, owner of University Bikes in Beaufort, has formed a new mountain bike group whose goal is to see mountain bike trails built in Beaufort County. “If they build it, they’ll come,” Mac says. Karl Puckett

Pineview Reserve is 108 acres between Sam’s Point Road and Rock Springs Creek. Beaufort County purchased Pineview in 2020 for $2.98 million, using funds from the Rural and Critical Lands Program which preserves land with taxpayer dollars. At the time, officials touted the land as a place for kayaking, hiking and horseback riding.

Beaufort County is set to launch a recreation needs study, and public meetings to get input from the public are scheduled for the first week of March, said Chris Ophardt, a county spokesperson. .

Mountain biking is allowed in passive parks, such as Pineview, with the exception of Widgeon Point Preserve, but the county will not build improved trails in a passive park, Ophardt said.

However, Ophardt said, a mountain bike trail and groomed trail is one of the projects under consideration for an active park, which are more developed than passive parks.

A 2020 Forbes story said the number of mountain bike trails across the United States showed increases of 100% to over 500% from the same period in 2019, with bike manufacturers seeing a sales increase. He cited the pandemic for the renewed interest in connecting with local trails.

“April 2020, I will never see monthly sales like this again,” Mac said. “I almost sold a new bike every day.”

Mac says mountain biking is a growing sport and one of the top five most popular outdoor activities.

Trail building, he adds, would capitalize on the skyrocketing popularity of mountain biking.

mountain bike pine view.jpg
Pineview Preserve spans 110 acres of upland forest and wetlands with scattered freshwater depression marshes. It is located off Sams Point Road on Lady’s Island, next to Rock Springs Creek. A Beaufort mountain bike group would like the county to consider a mountain bike trail here. Karl Puckett

Beaufort Trailsblazers is looking for a professional trail builder to plan the installation of single track mountain bike trails in Pineview. Members of the group say they would work voluntarily to maintain it.

Area bike trails are located in Hunting Island State Park, Pinckney Island National Wildlife Area, and Hilton Head Island. But the options are limited, says Shannon Butler, another Beaufort Trailblazers member.

“My kids love single track trails,” says Butler. “We need to get out of town.”

Many cities in South Carolina have more than one mountain bike trail location, Butler said.

the South Carolina Interscholastic Cycling League was founded in 2018 as a non-profit organization to help develop high school and college teams/clubs for students in grades 6-12, he noted.

Children, Mac says, need “more than just looking at the leaves.” At the same time, he adds, it’s not uncommon to see people over 70 going out on mountain bikes.

“Mountain biking is fun,” Mac says, adding that a mountain bike trail also lets people run and hike in nature. “It’s a good exercise. It’s good for you.”

Hilton Head Island Packet Related Stories

Karl Puckett covers the town of Beaufort, the town of Port Royal and other communities north of the Broad River for The Beaufort Gazette and Island Packet. The Minnesota native has also worked at newspapers in his home state of Alaska, Wisconsin and Montana.
Support my work with a digital subscription

Here’s where the Texans could face the last stand as an organization


There’s a lot to do – and nothing to do – lately in the endless drama of Deshaun Watson and his future in football.

Rumors recently started by “NFL insiders” have Watson as a forfeit with highly sought-after coach Brian Flores, Watson to the Minnesota Vikings, Watson to the New York Giants, Watson to the Carolina Panthers.

Some samples:

“Developing Story: Deshaun Watson and Brian Flores have been in constant communication trying to navigate a storyline where they go on the same team, per sources.”

“Sources tell me the biggest sleeper in the Deshaun Watson contest was the Minnesota Vikings.”

“As the Panthers continue to search for their quarterback of the future, a trade (for) Deshaun Watson remains an option.”

“After extensive research into the situations of Coach Flores and Deshaun Watson, sources familiar with the situation say that Flores and Watson have had no contact. Flores and Watson do not have phone numbers either. the other.

That’s a few sources you have there. A better way to put it, we’re back at Square One with the prospect of Watson going nowhere and doing nothing for another increasingly possible year. Again, sources.

There’s still the matter of 22 civil lawsuits filed by masseuses accusing Watson of sexual misconduct. Additionally, a grand jury is considering the case, which could expose Watson to criminal charges and a trial. The grand jury’s decision is expected soon.

Here’s what we know for sure, and by sure we mean anyone’s guess how it goes.

Tony Buzbee, attorney for the 22 women who filed civil lawsuits against Watson, said he will depose Watson over several days in February and March. Sessions are scheduled for February 24 and 25, February 28, March 1, March 8 and 9, and March 22 and 23. The interrogation will begin at 10 a.m. each day in Buzbee’s downtown office. The deposition must not exceed 48 hours in total and will be videotaped.

Buzbee, chomping at the bit for this deposition, will make Watson nostalgic for when he was tackled by the Chicago Bears for a safety. I went there, dropped off at a law firm. It is an excruciating experience. The newspaper I worked for was being sued and the plaintiff wanted to know what I knew. I was groomed, told that opposing counsel would try to anger me into cracking under the pressure and saying something stupid. I was grilled for about four hours, during which the same question was asked 1,000 times in 1,000 different ways. I did my best Sgt. Imitation of Schultz, “I don’t know anything”, which turned out to be the truth. I was closer to a typist in the court reporter pool than a boardroom manager in that newspaper.

Given the case’s high publicity, laughable security measures, and wacky stunts on both sides, I expect the videotapes of Watson’s deposition to be released on YouTube at 6 p.m.

Recently, a detailed copy of a $100,000 settlement offer by Watson to one of the accusers last October was leaked. Who leaked it? Suspects are limited to all actors in this B-movie, straight-to-cable drama.

Like those “NFL insiders” speculating on Watson’s future, I too have my sources. I don’t mean to brag, but my sources are just as unreliable as theirs.

Here’s a scenario: The grand jury says the charges against Watson are worthy of a trial. Watson is found guilty of some sort of misdemeanor and pays a heavy fine. The NFL places him on the commissioner’s exemption list and waives Watson for part, most or all of the 2022 season. Other teams drop trades for Watson and he remains with the Texans who are expected to pay him for 2022 .

Either Watson is innocent, the grand jury says there is not enough evidence for a trial to proceed, the women drop their civil lawsuits, and Watson is free and clear to pursue his career.

It’s a draw, and you know how much football fans love draws these days.

Highland Park City Council extends proof of vaccination order – NBC Chicago


Highland Park City Council decided on Monday to extend a temporary order requiring proof of vaccination.

The order requiring proof of vaccination for the “on-site dining establishment” began Jan. 7 and was extended to Feb. 14 at Monday night’s council meeting.

“It’s January, so we’re not setting any records, but at the same time, we’re losing 15 to 30 people a day,” said Bluegrass restaurant owner Jim Lederer.

Lederer and other restaurateurs say the mandate hurts their bottom line and drives many customers to eat elsewhere.

“Since Highland Park is the only community outside of Cook County in the State of Illinois, leave it on a level playing field. No one else is. So why should we ?”

Currently, restaurants that do not comply with the order first receive a warning. If another complaint is received, an inspector visits the property and a Notice of Violation may be formally issued. A citation can be issued to businesses that do not comply, up to $750, depending on the city.

“I don’t understand their purpose in trying to do this to corporations. It’s mind-boggling to me. And it’s upsetting,” said Jeff Gorbena, owner of Tamales a Mexican Joint.

“Since the start of the pandemic, we’ve been down at least 50% overall. It’s brutal here,” Gorbena said.

According to the Illinois Department of Public Health, 82.39% of Highland Park residents are fully immunized. And in Tamales, there are signs on the tables that say their staff are fully vaccinated. But, says Gorbena, it comes down to freedom and choice.

“I 100% believe it plays a big role in people going elsewhere for their dining cravings and needs,” he said.

“I’ve had people specifically reach out and say they feel bad, sorry they’re not coming. They’re only going to what they would call a ‘free village’ or a ‘free town’. Highland Park just sees it differently.”

Alabama Power Foundation is accepting applications for Students to Stewards scholarships

The Alabama Power Foundation accepts applications for the annual Students to Stewards scholarship program.

As part of the foundation’s ongoing environmental and sustainability initiatives, Students to Stewards will be offering grants of up to $3,500 this year to schools in financial need. Grants support conservation education, including classroom courses, field learning, and teacher training.

“Students to Stewards provides hands-on, informative educational programs to educate schools about our state’s incredible natural resources and biological diversity,” said Susan Comensky, vice president of environmental affairs for Alabama Power. “Working with schools and teachers across the state, Students to Stewards helps expand understanding of our natural world and how we can all work together to protect it.”

Since its inception in 2014, Students to Stewards has awarded over 50 scholarships totaling over $100,000. Grants have helped provide resources for a variety of conservation education projects, from building outdoor classrooms to developing lesson plans. Students to Stewards also helps younger generations better understand the many rewarding career opportunities related to science and the environment.

For a school to be eligible for a Students to Stewards scholarship, at least 50% of its full-time student population must receive free or reduced-price lunches. The deadline to apply for a Students to Stewards scholarship is February 11. To learn more about Students to Stewards and the grant criteria, click here.

The Alabama Power Foundation is committed to empowering communities and improving the quality of life for all Alabamians. Funded by shareholder dollars, the foundation provides philanthropic support to Alabama communities, nonprofits, and educational institutions.

To learn more about the Alabama Power Foundation, its grant programs and initiatives, please visit https://powerofgood.com/.

Wendel will acquire ACAMS, the world’s largest non-profit organization dedicated to the fight against financial crime



Wendel will acquire ACAMS, the world’s largest non-profit organization dedicated to the fight against financial crime

Wendel (Euronext: MF.FP) today announces that it has entered into an agreement with Colibri Group, a Gridiron Capital company, to acquire the Financial Services segment of Adtalem Global Education (NYSE: ATGE). As part of the transaction, Wendel will acquire the Association of Certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialists (“ACAMS” or the “Company”), and Colibri will separately acquire Becker Professional Education and OnCourse Learning. Scott D. Liles, currently President and CEO of ACAMS, will become the Company’s Chief Executive Officer upon closing of the transaction.

The acquisition of ACAMS by Wendel values ​​the Company at approximately $5001 million and envisages an equity investment by Wendel of approximately 355 million dollars, for a c. 99% interest in the Company. The transaction is expected to close in the first half of 2022, subject to customary conditions and regulatory approval.

ACAMS is the global leader in training and certifications for anti-money laundering (“AML”) and financial crime prevention professionals. ACAMS has a large worldwide membership base with more than 90,000 members in 175 countries, including more than 50,000 professionals holding an ACAMS certification, the maintenance of which drives the annual consumption of ACAMS continuing education content, including including webinars and conferences. The Company has approximately 275 employees primarily located in the United States, London and Hong Kong who serve its global customers.

For the twelve-month period ended September 30, 2021, ACAMS had revenue of $83 million and, under Wendel’s usual definition, estimated unaudited standalone EBITDA would be approximately $18 million. .2

André François-Poncet, CEO of the Wendel group, and David Darmon, Deputy Chief Executive Officer of Wendel noted: We are excited to invest in ACAMS, a global leader in training and certifications for financial crime prevention. ACAMS is a successful morganization by mission aligned with Wendel’s values. As a provider of services that ultimately reduce the financing of terrorism and human trafficking (among other nefarious activities), this aligns well with Wendel’s CSR values. The investment represented a New Milestone in our 2021-24 roadmap, and our stated goal of accelerate the redeployment of our capital towards companies with higher growth rates.

Adam Reinman and Harper Mates of Wendel North America, added: We are excited to partner with the ACAMS team and continue to build on the momentum the company has built under from Adtalem ownership. the The company’s shared mission and its trusted partnership with financial crime prevention professionals from all over the world positions it for continued growth as customers increasingly rely on ACAMS support to deal with the complex threat and regulatory environment. Wendel’s shared values ​​and experience with CPI, a similar world, mission-driven certification and membership organization, makes us an ideal partner and adds another market leader to our portfolio Business with attractive long-term growth prospects. We are delighted to join Scott and all ACAMS employees like us Support this iconic brand and of the society transition to self-employment.”

Scott Liles, ACAMSCEO of, declared: We looking forward to being a partner with Wendel in this next phase of ACAMS the story. Wendel’s long-term investment philosophy and shared values are Good adapted at Support The mission of ACAMS, our people, and our commitment to our global members. We appreciate the support and investment Adtalem provided during the last years and look forward to working with Wendel as we are moving to a stand-alone business and seek to any further extend our reach and impactyou.

Macquarie Capital acted as financial advisor to Wendel and Kirkland & Ellis LLP acted as legal advisor on the acquisition of ACAMS.

On Adtalem Global Education

Adtalem Global Education (NYSE: ATGE), a leading workforce solutions provider, partners with organizations in the healthcare and financial services industries to address critical workforce needs works by expanding access to education, certifications and development programs at scale. With a focus on delivering strong outcomes that increase workforce readiness, Adtalem empowers a diverse learner population to achieve their goals and make inspiring contributions to the global community. Adtalem is the parent organization of ACAMS, American University of the Caribbean School of Medicine, Becker Professional Education, Chamberlain University, EduPristine, OnCourse Learning, School of Medicine from Ross University, Ross University School of Veterinary Medicine and Walden University. Adtalem has over 10,000 employees, a network of over 275,000 alumni and serves over 82,000 members in 200 countries and territories. Adtalem was named one of America’s Most Responsible Companies 2021 by Newsweek and one of America’s Best Diversity Employers 2021 by Forbes. Follow Adtalem on Twitter (@adtalemglobal), LinkedIn or visit adtalem.com for more information.

About the Colibri Group

Colibri Group is building the future of vocational training. Today, millions of licensed professionals start and advance their careers with the company’s online and in-person learning solutions for licensing, continuing education, test preparation and professional development. Based in St. Louis, Missouri, Colibri Group provides a holistic learning experience for students and professionals to achieve greater success and fulfillment throughout their careers in real estate, financial services, employee education teachers, health, appraisal and real estate services, among other professions. Visit colibrigroup.com for more information.


Parks Superintendent to Request Funds from ARPA for Additional Lead Study in La Crosse River Marsh | Government and politics


Another study is needed to find a possible solution to lead contamination in the La Crosse River marsh, and the director of the city’s parks, recreation and forestry department hopes to use COVID relief money to finance it.

That’s the update Superintendent Jay Odegaard gave the park’s Board of Commissioners on Thursday, describing that the contamination control process is currently at an “impasse.”

The swamp was contaminated by lead left by the La Crosse Gun Club, which was housed at Myrick Park from 1929 to 1963 and fired at targets above the swamp. A 2015 study found that 50,000 lead pellets per square meter remained embedded in the seabed and left high levels of lead and PAHs, or polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons.

Finding solutions has been complicated, however, as any kind of cleanup could do more harm to the swamp.

People also read…

“What we’re planning to do is complete another study,” Odegaard said. “What this study will allow us to do is continue negotiations with the (Department of Natural Resources) on how we are going to address certain hot spots related to the marsh.”

The Board of Public Works, which is the engineering group that oversees the marsh (though Parks Department staff manage it), approved the additional survey to be carried out last fall, Odegaard said. But at the time, there was no funding.

Now, city funding through the American Rescue Plan Act could be the answer.

The city recently presented a plan that calls for spending about 60% of ARPA’s remaining $18.5 million on water, sewer, and broadband infrastructure, and this new study could potentially fall into that category. .

Odegaard said he wanted to let the park board know about the request partly because of the importance of the swamp, but also to get it on board members’ radar.

“While we saw resolutions regarding ARPA funding before the board last month, there is still a bit of hesitation as to how this source of funding looks,” Odegaard said.

This study would hopefully connect the final dots for the city and state as they have juggled the responsibility of finding a solution for the past few years. Odegaard said the city wanted to choose a solution with DNR support.

Those solutions will themselves be a delicate balance, Odegaard pointed out, and there are quite a few options on the table that range from minimal to “much more substantial” impact on the swamp.

“But the point I want to drive home to the park board tonight is that this next piece of the swamp project is critical in its timing,” Odegaard said. “That we are able to go ahead and complete this study, which will paint the picture of the solution.”

The park board took no action regarding the study and were only informed of the plans. Odegaard said the item would then be brought back to the Public Works Board. The city council has implemented that all expenditures of ARPA dollars will have to be approved by them.

Flora Prairie celebrates its 54th anniversary with the love of volunteers | News


More than three dozen Stateline volunteers got their hands dirty at an anniversary celebration for a historic prairie. Why cleaning up nature keeps wildlife alive.

ROCKFORD (WREX) — For three dozen volunteers, it was a day of service and celebration for one of Illinois’ last remaining grasslands.

It may have taken a total team effort, but for them it was worth it.

Today was a day to light the candles at Flora Prairie in Boone County.

As the 10-acre meadow celebrates its 54th anniversary, it is part of the Boone County Conservation District.

“It’s one of the biggest and best meadows in the state,” said volunteer Jack Shouba.

And so that the meadow knows another 54 years, the volunteers give him a little love for his birthday.

“Winter is a great time to come and cut down overgrown shrubs and woody plants that grow,” said Amy Doll, director of Friends of Illinois Nature Preserves. “Because we can walk here on this frozen ground and not trample the fragile plants because the ground is frozen.”

As one of the last dry grasslands in Boone County and all of Illinois, now is the time to preserve its history.

“These nature reserves contain our biodiversity reserves and once we lose these things they are gone forever,” Doll said.

But even in freezing temperatures, volunteers like Shouba don’t hesitate to get their hands dirty to keep the historic site alive for future generations of Stateline natives.

“Scarcity is something that appeals to me,” Shouba said. “It’s been a really special place for me for over 50 years.”

And during this period, the grassland became a place of comfort for Shouba during each month of a given year.

“The grassland changes with the seasons,” Shouba said. “If you come back every week or every two weeks, it’s a whole different prairie.”

Another year, another season and another reason to celebrate.

The Boone County Conservation District regularly offers volunteer opportunities for anyone who wants to lend a hand.

EXCLUSIVE US opposes World Health Organization boost plans


The World Health Organization logo is pictured at the entrance to the WHO building, in Geneva, Switzerland, December 20, 2021. REUTERS/Denis Balibouse

Join now for FREE unlimited access to Reuters.com


  • Major financing reform supported by Europe, Africa, South Asia
  • The White House offers a separate fund for health emergencies
  • Biden administration skeptical of WHO, sources say

BRUSSELS, Jan 21 (Reuters) – The United States, the World Health Organization‘s biggest donor, is resisting proposals to make the agency more independent, four officials involved in the talks have said, raising doubts on the Biden administration’s long-term support for the UN. agency.

The proposal, made by the WHO’s Task Force on Sustainable Financing, would increase each member state’s permanent annual contribution, according to a WHO document posted online and dated January 4.

The plan is part of a wider reform process galvanized by the COVID-19 pandemic, which has highlighted the limits of the WHO’s power to intervene at the onset of a crisis.

Join now for FREE unlimited access to Reuters.com


But the US government opposes the reform because it worries about the WHO’s ability to deal with future threats, including from China, US officials told Reuters.

Instead, it pushes for the creation of a separate fund, directly controlled by donors, which would finance the prevention and control of health emergencies.

Four European officials involved in the talks, who declined to be named because they were not authorized to speak to the media, confirmed the American opposition. The US government had no immediate comment.

The published proposal calls for member states’ assessed contributions to increase gradually from 2024 so that they represent half of the agency’s $2 billion base budget by 2028, up from less than 20% currently, according to the document.

WHO’s core budget aims to fight pandemics and strengthen health systems around the world. It also raises about an additional $1 billion annually to address specific global challenges such as tropical diseases and influenza.

Proponents say the current reliance on voluntary funding from member states and charities such as the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation forces the WHO to focus on priorities set by donors and makes it less adept at criticizing members when things go wrong.

An independent pandemic panel that was appointed to advise on WHO reform had called for a much bigger increase in mandatory fees, to 75% of the core budget, deeming the current system “a major risk to the integrity and independence” of the WHO.


The WHO itself responded to a question by saying that “only flexible and predictable funds can allow the WHO to fully implement the priorities of Member States”.

Major European Union donors, including Germany, support the plan, along with most African, South Asian, South American and Arab countries, three of the European officials said.

The proposal is due to be discussed at the WHO executive board meeting next week, but the divisions mean no agreement is expected, three of the officials said.

The WHO confirmed that there was currently no consensus among member states and said talks were likely to continue until May’s annual meeting of the World Health Assembly, the main decision-making body of the the agency.

European donors, in particular, favor empowering rather than weakening multilateral organizations, including the WHO.

A European official said the US plan “causes skepticism in many countries”, and said the creation of a new structure controlled by donors, rather than the WHO, would weaken the agency’s ability to fight against future pandemics.

Washington has been criticizing the WHO for some time.

Former President Donald Trump withdrew the United States from the WHO after accusing it of defending China’s initial delays in sharing information when COVID-19 emerged there in 2019.

The Biden administration joined soon after taking office, but officials told Reuters they believe the WHO needs significant reform and raised concerns about its governance, structure and its ability to deal with growing threats, particularly from China.

One of the European officials said other major countries, including Japan and Brazil, were also hesitant about the published WHO proposal.

A Brazilian official familiar with the discussions said Brazil agreed that funding for the WHO should be looked at, but said it opposed the proposal to increase contributions because it had ran up deficits to fight the virus and was now facing a fiscal crisis.

Instead, the official said the WHO should look for other ways to raise funds, such as charging for its services, cutting costs or relocating operations to cheaper countries.

“Increasing contributions should be the last resort,” said the official, who was not authorized to speak publicly about the talks.

Two of the European officials said China had yet to clarify its position, while a third official cited Beijing among critics of the proposal.

The governments of Japan and China had no immediate comment.

Join now for FREE unlimited access to Reuters.com


Reporting by Francesco Guarascio @fraguarascio in Brussels and Trevor Hunnicutt in Washington; Additional reporting by Stephanie Nebehay in Geneva, Andreas Rinke in Berlin and Anthony Boadle in Brasilia; Editing by Josephine Mason, Kevin Liffey and Daniel Wallis

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

City approval moves Winrock project forward


ALBUQUERQUE, NM (KRQE) – People have been waiting more than a decade for the promised Winrock Town Center to be completed. After countless challenges and delays, the developers say the project is about to take off. The estimated completion date has been repeatedly pushed back, now the owners have obtained city approval to move forward with one of the biggest attractions.

The vision is an open-air shopping district, complete with a hotel, IMAX theater, parks, condos, and offices. In 2015, the developers told us that the project would be completed by 2018. Since then, the completion date has been pushed back again and again. “It’s a very complicated project, unlike anything done in Albuquerque,” said Darin Sand of the Goodman Realty Group.

Some progress has been made over the years, the theater opened in 2013. A few more restaurants and stores have moved in, and New Mexico Orthopedics has also made Winrock Town Center its home. But it still doesn’t look like what was promised.

“Winrock is not a project,” explained Sand. “You can think of it as five or six different projects, each with its challenges,” Sand said.

Now Sand says they are close to delivering on that promise. “Construction will start this year and continue for a few years,” he told KRQE.

On Wednesday, a planning commission approved plans for a park that will go between the two Dillards. The park will include a lake in the middle, an amphitheater for outdoor entertainment and a children’s play area. Sand says it will transform the outdoor space. “A lot of competitive cities and big cities have equipment like this,” Sand said. “That’s something we want to bring to Albuquerque,” he told KRQE.

Sand says he expects construction on the park to begin this summer, he says if all goes according to plan, the park should be finished by the summer of 2023. Construction of a 150-room hotel rooms and a 200-unit apartment complex is also expected to begin this year. .

Stem: US Adds 22 New Fields of Study to International Student Program

To enhance nonimmigrant student contributions in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) fields and support the growth of the economy and innovation, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced Friday that 22 new subjects have been added to the STEM Optional Practical Training (OPT) program for international students.
International students on F-1 visas at US universities are eligible for the OPT, which is a temporary employment opportunity in the applicant’s primary field of study. While all international students can apply for up to 12 months of OPT employment authorization before completing their university studies (pre-completion) and/or after completing their studies (post-completion), the STEM OPT program allows F-1 students to earn a bachelor’s degree. , masters, or doctorate in certain fields to stay in the United States for up to 36 months to work in their field of study. The OPT is a very popular route for Indian students to work in the United States after their studies and, according to an Open Doors survey in November 2020, which tracks the number of international students, 81,173 Indian students were enrolled in the OPT program . The November 2021 Open Doors report, however, did not track the latest figures from Indian students on OPT.
The addition of 22 fields of study will ensure that the U.S. economy benefits from students earning degrees in the United States in competitive STEM fields, according to a DHS statement.
Information about new areas of study will be communicated to schools and students through a Federal Register Notice. The 22 new fields of study are bioenergy, general forestry, forest resource production and management, human-centered technology design, cloud computing, anthropozoology, climate science, earth systems science, economics and computer science, environmental geosciences, geobiology, geography and environmental studies. , Mathematical Economics, Mathematics and Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, General Data Science, General Data Analysis, Business Analysis, Data Visualization, Financial Analysis, Other Data Analysis, Industrial and Organizational Psychology and Social Sciences, Research Methodology and Quantitative Methods .
“STEM innovation allows us to solve the complex challenges we face today and make a difference in how we secure and protect our country,” said DHS Secretary Mayorkas. “Through STEM education and training opportunities, DHS is increasing the number and diversity of students who excel in STEM education and contribute to the American economy.”
DHS is also updating and issuing new guidance to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Policy Manual. USCIS updates guidance to clarify how certain STEM graduates and entrepreneurs can use the national interest exemption for immigrant visa classification based on employment as a noncitizen or noncitizen professional graduate in the United States. exceptional abilities. Some non-citizens with an advanced degree or exceptional ability may apply for an employment-based immigrant visa classification on their own, without labor market testing and obtaining certification from the U.S. Department of Labor, if USCIS determines that waiving the labor market test is in the national interest. Updated guidelines clarify how to use the program, allowing non-nationals with the necessary skills, such as STEM graduates and entrepreneurs, to embark on a path to obtaining lawful permanent resident status in the states -United.
USCIS is also releasing an updated O-1A Nonimmigrant Status Policy Handbook for Noncitizens of Extraordinary Ability in the Sciences, Arts, Education, Business, or Law. ‘Athletics. This update explains how USCIS determines the eligibility of O-1A applicants and, for the first time, provides examples of evidence that might meet the criteria, including for people working in STEM fields.

A new nursery promotes the improvement of biodiversity


A new site is set to help grow the green shoots of Denbighshire County Council’s work to improve biodiversity across the county

The Council has set up a nursery of locally sourced trees at Green Gates Farm on the edge of St Asaph.

This new site aims to produce 5,000 trees and 5,000 native wild plants per year, with the hope of expanding in the future.

Following the Council’s declaration of a Climate and Ecological Emergency in 2019, this project is part of an ongoing commitment to improve biodiversity across the county,

In Denbighshire there are now almost 60 Wildflower Meadows project sites, including motorway shoulders, path edges, cycle paths and amenity meadows with more sites planned for inclusion this spring

These sites, along with the 11 roadside nature preserves, are equivalent to about 30 football fields of grassland managed as native wildflower meadows.

As well as protecting wildflowers, the grasslands also improve the well-being of Denbighshire’s native insects.

The Council has also set up a plan to create four new forests in Denbighshire and plans to plant almost 5,000 trees before March this year.

All seeds and cuttings are from plants in Denbighshire which means they are much more suited to our climate and conditions than plants from other parts of the UK. Choosing a local provenance also reduces the risk of introducing foreign diseases and pests to the area and preserves local genetics and regional variation within plant species.

Plants and trees grown at the nursery will be used to help boost biodiversity in the county, providing more wildflowers for our pollinators and more trees for our birds and other wildlife.

Some are used to improve communal lands for wildlife, such as planting wildflowers on roadsides that have become depleted of wildflowers over time due to regular mowing.

Through the road shoulder project, the council has reduced mowing on suitable shoulders, making them more suitable for wildflowers.

As well as boosting biodiversity on council-owned land, the trees and wildflowers will be made available to local groups and landowners who wish to encourage wildlife on their properties.

Cllr Tony Thomas, Housing and Communities Council Senior Member, said: ‘We are proud to have such an important facility in St Asaph which helps us achieve our aim of maintaining and enhancing biodiversity throughout the county.

“The nursery will also be used to grow less common species. Currently, the nursery grows junipers, wild corteges and black poplars, all of which have declined sharply over the past century.

“St Asaph is fortunate to have a group of black poplars already, but in many areas there are few left, and in particular very few females, as they are often culled due to the amounts of fluffy seed they leave. produce.

“If you are a local landowner who has black poplar on your land, we would love to come and take cuttings to grow. Alternatively, if you would like to plant black poplar on your land, please contact us.

Cleveland-based organization dedicated to the changing black infant mortality rate


CLEVELAND (WJW) — The death rate for black infants is more than double that of white infants, according to the CDC, and health care disparities for African Americans are the main cause.

In the continuation of our Black History Month series, FOX 8 takes a look at a Cleveland-based organization dedicated to changing these startling statistics one healthy baby at a time.

The non-profit association, Birth of beautiful communities, is a growing community of birth attendants, primarily providing social support to pregnant women most at risk of infant mortality during the perinatal period.

The BBC was established in 2014 by African American-trained Perinatal Support Persons, or PSPs, in the Glenville neighborhood of Cleveland. Since its inception, the organization has served as an agency for the training, certification and employment of PSPs.

The organization is expanding, with the goal of building a brand new headquarters in the Glenville neighborhood within two years.

Learn more about the organization and the women it has helped in the video above.

Dayton Family Opposes Changes to Orono’s Summit Beach Park


10:00 p.m. weather reportTimes will hit the single digits on Thursday, and more snow will arrive on Friday.

Discover Minnesota: Whitewater Snowshoe TourAt Whitewater State Park in Winona County, it doesn’t matter if it’s 30 degrees below or 30 degrees above – people show up for a particular snow activity.

Metro hockey team honors assistant coach after tragedyA junior hockey team and its fans honored their assistant coach and his wife with a mid-game tribute on Wednesday night.

Dayton Family Opposes Changes to Orono’s Summit Beach ParkOne of Minnesota’s wealthiest families fights to stop a Twin Cities suburb from developing an urban park.

Pond hockey, snow sculpture to bring onlookers outsideOur local pride in banding together to go out in the cold is attracting international attention this week.

Why Most St. Paul Diners Won’t Need to Show Vax StatusChange is on the menu at many Twin Cities restaurants, with requirements starting Wednesday for customers to have a vaccine or test negative for COVID. However, a little-known rule adds to the confusion for St. Paul spots.

Trampoline Park aims to help action sports athletes hone new skillsThe facility is only open to action sports athletes looking to improve their skills.

6:00 p.m. weather reportMeteorologist Chris Shaffer indicates how long this cold spell will last.

Stillwater Snow Carving ChampionshipsNine teams from five countries will spend three days carving snow blocks into creative workers.

Minnesota sues 2 companies over COVID testingMinnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison said the two companies took too long to return test results and falsified information.

Hennepin County Workers File Plan to StrikeThousands of social service and office workers say they want better wages, remote work benefits and COVID protections.

What Wastewater Reveals About Omicron in MinnesotaThe researchers say the data suggests Omicron’s peak may have already been reached in the Twin Cities.

Restaurants make changes as vaccine rule takes effectSome restaurants said they had to change their entire business model to make things work.

5:00 p.m. weather reportCold temperatures are here to stay for a few days, according to WCCO meteorologist Chris Shaffer.

Emergency medical teams arrive in Minnesota for COVID reliefMinnesota hospitals continue to face a care crisis, with too many patients and too few staff.

Twin Cities businesses adapt to vaccine rulesWednesday is the first day you must prove you have been vaccinated against COVID-19 or show a negative test result before you can enter certain locations in Minnesota and St. Paul.

Federal civil rights trial set to begin Thursday for 3 former MPD officers in George Floyd deathOn Thursday, the federal civil rights trial of three former Minneapolis police officers in the death of George Floyd begins in St. Paul.

WCCO Digital Update: Afternoon of January 19, 2022Here are Minnesota’s latest headlines.

Midday weather reportMeteorologist Lisa Meadows reports a freezing wind chill and when Minnesotans could see snow later this week.

MnDOT’s Name A Plow Contest ReturnsSome of this year’s names include “Betty Whiteout” and “Plowin’ In The Wind”.

Man arrested in connection with St. Paul homicideA 31-year-old man was arrested for the fatal shooting Tuesday night in the Frogtown neighborhood.

Vaccine rules go into effect in Minneapolis, St. PaulThose visiting bars and restaurants will need to present proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test.

How to Eat Burgers for a Good CauseCities 97’s Paul Fletcher explains.

New book shares ‘celebration of Nordic skiing’Ryan Rodgers talks about his new book, “Winter’s Children.”

New Lodge Opening at Fall Creek Falls State Park – Cityview

Fall Creek Falls State Park officially opened its new $40 million pavilion this month with a ceremony led by Governor Bill Lee. When fully open, the lodge will offer 85 rooms, conference space and a restaurant and lounge. A limited number of rooms are currently available and the restaurant is open with limited hours and menu. No date is currently set for the lodge to fully open, Kim Schofinski said., Deputy Director of Communications for the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation.

The rooms, as well as an outdoor pool, overlook the Fall Creek Falls lake, and all rooms have balconies with lake views. The restaurant offers indoor and outdoor dining space by the lake. For more information on booking rooms, click here.

Lodge in Fall Creek Falls | attic fire photography

Fall Creek Falls State Park is one of the largest and most visited state parks in Tennessee. One hour from Chattanooga and less than two hours from Knoxville, the park spans over 29,800 acres on the Cumberland Plateau. It features towering waterfalls, spectacular viewpoints, 30 cabins and 222 campsites, as well as backcountry camping. Over 56 miles of trails are accessible.

Last year, the park opened a $2.7 million, 4,800 square foot park. visitor center as part of the $184 million investment in Tennessee State Parks. And the Fall Creek Falls Nature Center offers hands-on environmental education through a variety of naturalist-led programs. The park also includes the Fall Creek Falls Golf Course and the Canopy Challenge course, featuring swings and ziplines. Paddle boards and kayaks are available for rent.

Governor Lee called the new lodge “an example of why Tennessee has one of the best state park systems in America. We look forward to welcoming the many visitors who will stay at the lodge and continue to make Fall Creek Falls State Park a year-round destination.

More protected areas will not save biodiversity, experts warn


France Media Agency

January 19, 2022 | 5:20 p.m.

PARIS, France — Expanding nature reserves won’t be enough to stem a rising tide of extinctions, a panel of experts warned Wednesday, aiming for a draft treaty to save Earth’s animal and plant life.

Setting aside at least 30% of land and oceans as protected areas is the fundamental goal of the so-called global biodiversity framework due to be finalized in May at UN negotiations in Kunming, China.

But a report from more than 50 top experts said the draft plan was still far short of what was needed.

“We are in the midst of a biodiversity crisis, with one million species threatened with extinction,” lead author Paul Leadley, a professor at Paris-Saclay University, told AFP.

“There is good evidence that we will again fail to meet ambitious international biodiversity targets if too much focus is placed on protected areas at the expense of other urgent actions.”

The plan, being negotiated by nearly 200 countries, sets a score of targets for 2030 and aims by 2050 to reverse biodiversity loss and “live in harmony with nature”.

The world has almost entirely failed to meet a similar set of 10-year goals set a decade ago at UN talks in Aichi, Japan.

“We keep trying to treat a critically ill patient with dressings – this needs to stop,” Leadley said.

Echoing a similar warning issued by the UN’s scientific advisory group on climate change, Leadley and colleagues said reversing damage to nature will require “transformative change” in society, starting with how we produce and consume food.

Several pilots

Policy makers must also realize that all drivers of extinction – habitat loss and fragmentation, overhunting for food and profit, pollution, the spread of invasive species – must be tackled at the same time. .

“Biodiversity loss is caused by multiple direct drivers in almost all cases, meaning that actions on just one or a few will be insufficient to halt continued loss,” the report said.

Climate change is also rapidly emerging as a major threat to many animal and plant species on land and in the oceans, exceeding their capacity to adapt.

Limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels – “essential” to protect nature – is not sufficiently reflected in the draft targets, according to the authors.

The Earth’s surface has already warmed by 1.1°C, enough to trigger a crescendo of climate-enhanced storms, heat waves, droughts and floods.

And it works both ways, the report warns: “The protection and restoration of biodiversity is essential to achieving the climate change mitigation and adaptation goals of the Paris Agreement.”

Nature-based solutions

As with the climate, there is no time to waste.

“The sooner we act, the better,” said co-author Maria Cecilia Londono Murcia, a researcher at the Humboldt Institute in Colombia.

“The time lags between action and positive outcomes for biodiversity can take decades.”

The report also criticizes the draft treaty for not specifying how the objectives will be achieved and applied.

Goals are all well and good, he suggests, “but it’s how those goals are implemented…that will determine success.”

Other targets set for 2030 include:

  • reduce by 50% the rate at which alien species spread across the world;
  • reduce nutrients such as fertilizers that leach into the environment by at least half and pesticides by at least two-thirds;
  • eliminate the discharge of plastic waste;
  • use nature-based solutions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by at least 10 billion tonnes of CO2 or its equivalent;
  • cut subsidies that harm biodiversity by at least $500 billion (€440 billion) a year.

“For every euro we spend around the world to help biodiversity, we spend at least five on things that destroy it,” said co-author Aleksandar Rankovic, a researcher at the Paris Institute of Political Studies.

The nations will gather in Geneva in March for technical meetings ahead of critical talks in April and May.

COVID-19 health emergency could be over this year, says World Health Organization


GENEVA >> The worst of the coronavirus pandemic – deaths, hospitalizations and lockdowns – could be ended this year if huge inequities in vaccinations and medicines are addressed quickly, the World Health Organization’s emergencies chief said today.

Dr Michael Ryan, speaking at a roundtable on vaccine inequality organized by the World Economic Forum, said that “we may never end the virus” because these pandemic viruses “eventually do part of the ecosystem”.

But “we have a chance of ending the public health emergency this year if we do the things that we’ve been talking about,” he said.

The WHO has denounced the imbalance in COVID-19 vaccinations between rich and poor countries as a catastrophic moral failure. Less than 10% of people in low-income countries have received even one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.

Ryan told the virtual gathering of world and business leaders that if vaccines and other tools are not shared fairly, the tragedy of the virus, which has so far killed more than 5.5 million people worldwide, will continue. .

“What we need to do is achieve low levels of disease incidence with maximum vaccination of our populations, so no one has to die,” Ryan said. “The problem is this: it is death. These are hospitalizations. It was the disruption of our social, economic and political systems that caused the tragedy, not the virus. »

Ryan also jumped into the growing debate over whether COVID-19 should be considered endemic, a label some countries like Spain have claimed to better help people live with the virus, or even a pandemic. – involving intensified measures that many countries have taken to combat the propagated.

“Endemic malaria kills hundreds of thousands of people; endemic HIV; endemic violence in our inner cities. Endemic in itself does not mean good. Endemic just means it’s here forever,” he said.

Public health officials have warned that COVID-19 is highly unlikely to be eliminated and say it will continue to kill people, albeit at much lower levels, even after it becomes endemic.

Panelist Gabriela Bucher, executive director of poverty relief organization Oxfam International, cited the “huge urgency” for more equitable distribution of vaccines and the need for large-scale production. She said resources to fight the pandemic were “hoarded by a few companies and a few shareholders”.

John Nkengasong, director of the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, denounced the “total breakdown of global cooperation and solidarity” over the past two years, saying it was “totally unacceptable” that few people in Africa have been vaccinated. His agency says only 10% of Africa’s 1.2 billion people are fully immunized.

He also sought to quell the belief among some that vaccine hesitancy is widespread in Africa, citing studies that 80% of Africans would be willing to get vaccinated if vaccines were available.

The comments came on the second day of the online alternative to the World Economic Forum’s annual gathering, which was postponed due to pandemic-related health concerns.

In speeches at the event, world leaders like Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett discussed approaches to the pandemic. He said his country, which quickly rolled out a large-scale vaccination campaign, has a strategy to be “at the forefront of drugs and vaccines” against COVID-19.

Israel’s Health Ministry says 62% of people there are fully vaccinated, including with boosters.

Citing advanced research in Israel, Bennett said, “We want to be the first in the world to know how vaccines and new variants respond to each other.”

Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said his country has high levels of vaccination because society values ​​protecting the elderly and vulnerable. He plans to keep strict border controls in place until the end of February.

He said he was trying to balance restrictions with keeping the economy open, but a “zero COVID policy against the omicron variant is neither possible nor appropriate.”

In a separate press briefing today, WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said the omicron variant “continues to sweep the world”, adding that 18 million new cases of COVID-19 have been reported. last week.

A mayor and the challenge of making the city safer


Hello. A death at a subway station over the weekend highlighted the challenges Mayor Eric Adams faces in delivering on his promise to make the city safer. We will also look at new efforts to generate electricity from offshore wind projects.

A death at a subway station over the weekend highlighted the challenges Mayor Eric Adams faces in delivering on his promise to make New York City safer.

Michelle Alyssa Go, a 40-year-old Asian woman who worked for consulting firm Deloitte, was shoved to death on Saturday in front of a train entering a Times Square station. The man who confessed was homeless and has a history of mental illness, police said.

The violence beyond the subway caught Adams’ attention on his first day as mayor, when a bullet hit an off-duty police officer who was napping in a car between shifts. And last week, a 19-year-old woman was fatally shot in a failed robbery at an East Harlem Burger King. Adams and other officials announced the arrest of a 30-year-old man who police say pulled a gun on the woman, Kristal Bayron-Nieves, as she cowered behind the counter and searched for a key to open the cash register.

Such widely reported incidents have heightened the fears of many New Yorkers about the direction of the city as it struggles through the pandemic. Go’s death has reignited conversations about public safety, a defining issue of Adams’ campaign last fall. But as my colleague Katie Glueck writes, there is a difference now: as mayor, he will be held accountable.

“That’s the biggest challenge he’s really facing,” said Kathryn Wylde, president and CEO of the business-aligned organization Partnership for New York City. “It’s one thing when you’re on the campaign trail, but it’s another when you actually have to make political decisions.”

She stressed that business leaders “support the mayor and his commitment to restoring public safety.”

Asked about the issue on Monday, Adams said, “I want expectations to be high.” He added: “The stakes are high.”

Officials need to “make sure we don’t have these incidents where an innocent person is murdered,” he said. “And we also have to struggle with the fact that there’s a feeling that our system is unsafe and out of control based on what’s going on every day.”

Even before the subway murder on Saturday, Adams and Gov. Kathy Hochul said they would assign more police to patrol the system and work with homeless outreach teams — proof of Adams’ determination to find a balance between, as he puts it, “intervention and prevention”.

“Our recovery depends on public safety in this city and in this subway system,” he said Sunday. “We can do that with the right balance, a balance of safety and a balance of proactively giving people the help they need when they’re in a mental health crisis.”

Officials to Adams’ left note politically that there has long been a significant police presence in Times Square; two officers were on the platform when Go was pushed, transit officials said.

“This notion that just adding more police is going to solve something, that notion is proven to not work in a place like Times Square,” said Jumaane Williams, public defender for the City of New York and Democratic candidate for governor. “That doesn’t mean law enforcement doesn’t have a role to play.”


It’s a windy day, mostly sunny in the mid 30’s. The evening is partly cloudy, with temperatures reaching 20 degrees.

alternative parking

Valid until January 31. (Lunar New Year).

Last week, officials including Jennifer Granholm, the US Secretary of Energy, and Governor Kathy Hochul, said contracts had been finalized for two offshore wind projects. They said it was a milestone in the development of wind power in New York State. I asked Anne Barnard, a Metro reporter who covers climate and the environment, to put the ad into context.

What is the importance of the two projects?

New York State’s goal is to generate 9,000 megawatts of electricity from offshore wind turbines by 2035, keeping in mind that the primary goal is to get all of our electricity from zero-emission sources by 2040. This is a big step forward.

When we talk about 9,000 megawatts, that’s enough to generate 30% of the electricity New York State needs, enough to power six million homes. Currently, only about 5% of the state’s electricity comes from renewables, even though the state has been talking for at least a decade about developing this sector.

The idea of ​​two large offshore wind projects sounds impressive. Is it?

On the one hand, yes, because the United States does not have offshore wind power as such. There are only two offshore wind farms in operation so far, one off Block Island, RI, the other off Virginia Beach, so all to get us started.

On the other hand, if you ask any climate or renewable energy expert, they will tell you that wind power needs to be developed quickly and massively. These projects are just the beginning.

You can’t just order a ready-to-use wind turbine and have it delivered the next day. Where will the wind turbines for the two projects be built?

Large towers are to be built in Albany and floated in pieces down the Hudson River on barges. They will go to a terminal in Sunset Park in Brooklyn, where the blades and generators will be attached. Then, everything must be loaded onto a specialized ship in the Atlantic Ocean, where it will be planted at the bottom of the ocean.

The ships are amazing. To put the turbines in place, the ship puts down stilts to stabilize itself while an onboard crane lifts the huge and heavy turbines into place.

One of the problems is that there are not enough ships. I think there is only one who can do the offshore installation and who is available to work in those waters. The others are in Europe.

The announcement of the two projects wasn’t the only wind energy development in New York last week. The Department of the Interior, along with Hochul and Governor Philip Murphy of New Jersey, announced they would lease 488,000 acres for offshore wind development in the New York Bight. What will it bring?

Eventually, more wind turbines and more electricity. The turbines will be installed in the New York Bight, the triangular-shaped section of the continental shelf between the New Jersey shore and the south coast of Long Island. The reason they put them further out to sea was because the winds are stronger and more consistent there.

New York and New Jersey hope there will be a coordinated offshore wind supply chain centered in New York Harbor – architectural and engineering firms and other businesses with the blue and white collar jobs necessary to provide this effort.

The Sunset Park, Brooklyn community has been a big supporter of this. They have been pushing for two decades to revitalize the maritime industry. They want the community to have industrial jobs, so they are excited for those industries to take hold. Uprose, a longtime community group in Sunset Park, has been at the forefront.

One of the concerns is that Sunset Park is what is called an environmental justice community, disproportionately affected by environmental issues over the decades – factory smokestacks, then BQE and whatever gets thrown into a working area. Sunset Park wants to see that when the ships come in to service the turbines, the ships themselves will be green and not bring diesel fumes into the area.

Camp Fire Comes Home to North Long Beach at DeForest Park – Press Telegram

Camp Fire will return to North Long Beach, with a 20-year lease to operate the town’s community center at DeForest Park, as well as some of the open space nearby.

The lease will be presented to City Council on Tuesday, January 18.

It is the culmination of more than four years of negotiation and planning. Camp Fire Angeles has been offering after-school programs and center enhancements since 2018.

The 15-acre park has the Los Angeles River to the west. There is also a 34-acre county flood retention pond to the south. This pond was a city-operated nature trail – overgrown with non-native plants and weeds until DeForest Wetlands was completed. The Long Beach Conservation Corps is building a small facility there and will maintain the wetland trails.

This new lease gives Camp Fire responsibility for the facility and planned discovery trails in a 3-acre northern section of DeForest Park. The campfire would be needed to allow the public and other groups to use the facilities when there are no regular campfire activities and to manage the schedule.

Under the 20-year lease, the annual rent is $24,570. But Camp Fire will receive a rent credit in consideration of the public benefit provided and the utility payments Camp Fire will make. The lease amount will increase every five years and there is an option for a 10 year extension.

Camp Fire has already made extensive repairs to the community center, according to executive director Georgia Stewart. The group received grants from the Port of Long Beach and the San Gabriel and Lower Los Angeles Rivers and Mountains Conservancy to renovate the center just before the coronavirus pandemic hit in March 2020.

“Just when we had to close there was a rain storm,” Stewart said in October 2020. “There was a leak and some of the tile started lifting.

“I had it checked, and sure enough, there was asbestos,” she added.

In addition to paying to have the asbestos removed, Camp Fire added a new roof, doors and windows to the building. More grants pay for building the trail.

“The vision for DeForest Park and the Nature Center is to create a safe space for families to recreate and experience the natural habitat of the Lower Los Angeles River and wetlands,” said Vice Mayor and Councilman of the Ninth District, Rex Richardson, in an email. “This exciting partnership with Camp Fire, alongside the new Conservation Corps Environmental Education Center, will help bring new programs, new resources, and ultimately a camping experience that will benefit the youth of our community.”

The lease also means Camp Fire’s operations in Long Beach have come full circle.

Camp Fire, then known as Camp Fire Girls, was established in Long Beach in 1925. The group got its start in North Long Beach at Camp Suanga, a day camp near Artesia Street and Long Beach Boulevard . In 1969, construction of Highway 91 closed the camp and operations were moved to DeForest Park. A second camp, Shiwaka, opened the same year at Carson Street and Studebaker Road.

Activity gradually moved to Camp Shiwaka and by 1983 there were no more Camp Fire activities at DeForest.

This time, however, it is no longer necessary to choose between one or the other. Programming will continue at Camp Shiwaka even as activities ramp up at DeForest Park.

Sign up for The Localist, our daily email newsletter with handpicked stories relevant to where you live. Subscribe here.

Events Honor Martin Luther King Jr. Day 2022 in the Chicago area – NBC Chicago


Several events will take place in the Chicago area on Monday for Martin Luther King Jr. Day, as many honor the holiday with acts of service.

Here’s a look at what’s planned around Chicago:

Cradles to Crayons

Cradles to Crayons will collect donations of new or like-new children’s clothing, including coats, boots, hats, gloves, scarves, pajamas, winter clothes and more. There will be 34 contactless drop-off sites that will be open from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday.

The event would be the organization‘s biggest day of volunteering during the coronavirus pandemic. Drop-off locations include:

• Acorn Library – 15624 Central Ave, Oak Forest, IL 60452
• Alcott Center – 530 Bernard Dr, Buffalo Grove, IL 60089
• Alternatives, Inc. – 4730 N Sheridan Rd, Chicago, IL 60640
• Aw Yeah Comics – 7925 Lincoln Ave, Skokie, IL 60077
• Bank of America – 1301 E. Ogden Ave., Naperville, IL 60563
• Bank of America – 1300 North Arlington Heights Rd., Buffalo Grove, IL 60089
• Buffalo Grove Park Community Arts Center – 225 McHenry Rd, Buffalo Grove, IL 60089
• North Center Chicago Children’s Lighthouse – 2600 W Irving Park Rd, Chicago, IL 60618
• Cloud and Rabbit – 1600 W Montrose Ave, Chicago, IL 60613
• Creative Scholars Preschool – 1735 N Elston Ave, Chicago, IL 60642
• East Shore Storage – 429 W Ohio St, Chicago, IL 60654
• Edgewater Playhouse – 1048 W Bryn Mawr Ave, Chicago, IL 60660
• Flying High Sports and Recreation Center – 5400 East Ave, Countryside, IL 60525
• Fry Family YMCA – 2120 W, 2120 95th St, Naperville, IL 60564
• Highwood Public Library – 102 Highwood Ave, Highwood, IL 60040
• Indian Boundary YMCA – 711 59th St, Downers Grove, IL 60516
• Jewett Park Community Center – 836 Jewett Park Drive, Deerfield, IL 60015
• Lake View YMCA – 3333 N Marshfield Ave, Chicago, IL 60657
• Little Beans Café – 430 Asbury Ave, Evanston, IL 60202
• Ravenswood Mathnasium – 1754 W Wilson Ave, Chicago, IL 60640
• McGuane Park – 2901 S Poplar Ave, Chicago, IL 60608
• Moonwalker Café – 4101 W Belmont Ave, Chicago, IL 60641
• Quilter’s Trunk – 10352 S Western Ave, Chicago, IL 60643
• Reebie Storage and Moving Co – 2325 N Clark St #300, Chicago, IL 60614
• Soul 2 Sole Dance Inc. – 799 Central Ave, Highland Park, IL 60035
• YMCA South Side – 6330 S. Stony Island Ave., Chicago, IL 60637
• StudioUs – 4806 N Clark St, Chicago, IL 60640
• The Giving Factory – 4141 W. George St. Chicago, IL 60641
• Timeless Toys – 4749 N Lincoln Ave, Chicago, IL 60625
• Tiny Tots Incorporated – 2603-2611 N Halsted St, Chicago, IL 60614
• Ultimate Ninjas Chicago – 2915 W Montrose Ave, Chicago, IL 60618
• Universal Wellness Source – 1902 W Belmont Ave, Chicago, IL 60657
• West Cook YMCA – 255 S Marion St, Oak Park, IL 60302
• Windy City Fieldhouse – 2367 W Logan Blvd, Chicago, IL 60647
• Kangaroo Kids – 4161 N Damen Ave, Chicago, IL 60618

More information can be found here: https://www.cradlestocrayons.org/chicago/mlk2022/

Cook County Forest Reserves

The Chairman of the Cook County Forest Reserve will host a day of service MLK: Giving Back to the Land in Honor of the Legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Volunteers will clean up litter and begin ecological restoration activities in several forest reserves in the region. Activities will also include things like the removal of invasive species.

“The lessons Dr. King left us on the need for fairness and the power of community are a transcendent gift for every American. Every day we can choose to make a difference,” Cook County Council Chairman Toni Preckwinkle said in a statement.

Forest reserves will provide bags and gloves for volunteers at the following locations:

Sand Ridge Nature Center
15891 Paxton Ave
South Holland, IL 60473 (see Sand Ridge Nature Center web map)
January 17, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. Includes ecological restoration and invasive species removal and a self-guided walk on the Poetry Trail.

Crabtree Nature Center
3 Stover Road
Barrington Hills, IL 60010 (see Crabtree Nature Center web map)
January 17, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center
9800 Willow Springs Road
Willow Springs, IL 60480 (see Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center web map)
January 17, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.

River Trail Nature Center
3120 Milwaukee Ave
Northbrook, IL 60062 (see River Trail Nature Center web map)
January 17, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Sagawau Environmental Learning Center
12545 West 111th Street
Lemont, IL 60439 (see Sagawau Environmental Learning Center web map)
January 17, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Trailside Natural History Museum
738 Thatcher Avenue
River Forest, IL 60305 (see Trailside Museum of Natural History web map)
January 17, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Dan Ryan Woods Visitor Center
S Western Ave and W 87th St
Chicago, IL 60620 (see Dan Ryan Woods Visitor Center web map)
Jan. 17, 12 p.m. – 3 p.m. Meet at the Dan Ryan Woods Pavilion. Includes a self-guided storytelling trail, treetop walk, and activity bags to learn at home.

Caldwell Wood
W Devon Avenue and N Nagle Avenue
Chicago, IL 60646 (see Caldwell Woods web map)
January 17, 1 p.m. – 3 p.m.

Miller Meadow South
1st Ave, south of Roosevelt Rd
Cook County, IL 60130 (see Miller Meadow-South web map)
(near the forest park)
January 17, 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. Go to Grove #6.

Sauk Trail Woods North
W 26th St, west of Euclid Ave
South Chicago Heights, IL 60411 (see Sauk Trail Woods-North web map)
January 17, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m.

City Year Chicago

City Year Chicago comes together to spruce up a school.

This year, AmeriCorps members and a small number of volunteers will travel to Kellman Corporate Community School in North Lawndale.

“For 28 years we have come together to serve in honor of the legacy of Dr. King and in these turbulent times, serving a cause and mission greater than oneself is more important than ever,” said the vice-president. Executive Chairman and Director of City Year Chicago. director Myetie Hamilton said in a statement.

Groups of voting rights

A Chicago coalition of suffrage and civil rights groups are holding a rally followed by a car caravan to pressure lawmakers to honor King’s legacy by immediately passing legislation on the right to vote.

Groups included in the rally and caravan include: Chicago Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression, Black Lives Matter – Chicago, SEIU Healthcare IL IN, Southsiders Organizing for Unity and Liberation (SOUL), NAACP, Indivisible Chicago, Indivisible Chicago South Side, Rainbow Push Coalition, Justice for Nick, Make Noize for Change, Arab American Action Network, US Palestinian Community Network, National Alliance for Filipino Concerns.


ChiGivesBack will host an MLK Jr. Day of Service supporting a local Chicago Public School. Volunteers, we will organize rooms, repaint walls and paint murals throughout Tanner Elementary School on Chicago’s South Side.

“This program was launched in 2019 as part of our #Teach2Give initiative to support CPS teachers, professors and students,” the group said.

Chicago History Museum

The Chicago History Museum will commemorate MLK Day with a free family event.

The event will focus on the life and works of Martin Luther King Jr., particularly in Chicago, including the Chicago Freedom Movement. It will include special activities and shows for families, including poetry workshops for young people, musical performances and more.

“We strive to make Dr. King’s accomplishments known to all members of the community in and around Chicago,” the museum said in a statement.

A computational account of topographic organization in the high-level visual cortex of primates



We introduce the Interactive Topographic Network (ITN), a computational framework for modeling the cortical organization of high-level vision. Through simulations of ITN models, we demonstrate that the topographic clustering of domains in the inferotemporal cortex of primates can result from the demands of visual recognition under biological constraints on wiring cost and the modulating sign of neural connections. The model’s learned organization is highly specialized but not entirely modular, capturing many organizational properties in higher-order primates. Our work is important for cognitive neuroscience, by providing a general developmental account of the field of topographic functional specialization, and for computational neuroscience, by demonstrating how well-known biological details can be incorporated into neural network models to account for empirical results.


The inferotemporal (IT) cortex in humans and other primates is topographically organized, containing multiple hierarchically organized areas selective for particular domains, such as faces and scenes. This organization is usually thought of in terms of domain-specific evolved visual mechanisms. Here, we develop an alternative, general and developmental domain account of computational cortical organization. The count is instantiated in Interactive Topographic Networks (ITNs), a class of computational models in which a hierarchy of model computational areas, subject to biologically plausible connectivity constraints, learns high-level visual representations optimized for multiple domains. We find that minimizing a wiring cost on the spatially organized feedforward and lateral connections, alongside realistic constraints on the sign of neural connectivity within the computational model, results in a hierarchical topographic organization. This organization replicates a number of key properties of the primate computational cortex, including the presence of domain-selective spatial clusters preferentially involved in the representation of faces, objects, and scenes; columnar responses through separate excitatory and inhibitory units; and a generic spatial organization in which the response correlation of pairs of units decreases with their distance. We therefore argue that topographic domain selectivity is an emergent property of a visual system optimized to maximize behavioral performance under generic connectivity-based constraints.


    • Accepted November 30, 2021.
  • Author contributions: research designed by NMB, MB and DCP; NMB has done research; NMB provided new analytical reagents/tools; NMB, MB and DCP analyzed the data; and NMB, MB and DCP wrote the article.

  • Assessors: MA, University of Pennsylvania; TK, Radboud University; and PS, Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

  • The authors declare no competing interests.

  • This article contains additional information online at https://www.pnas.org/lookup/suppl/doi:10.1073/pnas.2112566119/-/DCSupplemental.

Mayor Gloria and city leaders cut the ribbon for the $5 million North Park Mini-Park

Aerial view of North Park mini-park. Photo via Facebook by North Park Business & Neighborhood Foundation

The City of San Diego will officially open the North Park Mini Park to residents of the North Park community at 10 a.m. Sunday with speeches from elected officials followed by a free community event.

Mayor Todd Gloria will cut the ribbon for the new park, which was approved in 2012. He will be joined by Assemblyman Chris Ward, D-San Diego and Councilman Stephen Whitburn. After the inauguration, there will be food trucks, a children’s music program and other concerts.

The $5 million, 21,780 square foot mini-park and plaza transforms a parking lot behind the site of the former historic North Park Theater, now known as the Observatory. Space upgrades include a musical play area, performance stage, seating areas with tables, chairs and benches, improved lighting, wayfinding pylons, bike racks, a fountain drinking water and improved landscaping and irrigation.

The park was approved a decade ago, and the city began soliciting construction bids in 2019.

Two other mini-parks have been developed in San Diego in 2021: the La Paz mini-park – which will turn a vacant land lot into green space in Valencia Park and is expected to be completed in mid-2022 – started in May; and the J Street Mini Park in the Stockton district reopened in October after extensive upgrades.

Last year, Gloria launched the “Parks for Us All” initiative, updating the city’s parks master plan to prioritize park improvements in parkless and historically underserved communities, aimed at help fund more projects like this in the future.

City News Service contributed to this article.

Show comments

Architects submit heritage bid to thwart Griffith Uni demolition plan

“It was hemmed in by other, in my opinion, rather poor and insensitive buildings,” said the award-winning architect.

“My brainchild [to lure students into new ways of thinking] was totally destroyed. »

Mr. Simpson is furious with the university’s upper management for his building plans.

“If Griffith University itself is doing what it is doing, then clearly it has no idea of ​​the value of the buildings and the potential heritage value of the buildings they started ages ago. many years.”

The university’s vice-chancellor and president, Professor Carolyn Evans, said she was aware of the heritage request to protect the original environmental science building.

The original Australian Environmental Studies building was designed to blend in with its bush surroundings.Credit:Jim Gall

She said the university has reviewed the heritage aspects of the building and will go through the process of applying for heritage listing before plans for the new building are finalized.

“Staff and students are very excited about the new building, as it means they are learning and working in a world-class facility that will replace more outdated accommodation,” Professor Evans said.

“We have spent a great deal of time in the design phase of this project to ensure that the building will meet the needs of our staff and students supporting globally recognized research, teaching and learning.”

She said the move was part of a billion-dollar infrastructure plan — announced in 2019 before COVID-19 — to close her Mount Gravatt campus and focus on the Nathan campus and a new CBD campus. for 3,500 students above the new Roma Street station by 2027.

The two architects who filed the heritage application say the original Australian Environmental Studies building should be added to Queensland’s heritage list because it has developed a sense of ‘sustainability’ for cost-benefit analysis and decision-making. decision.

Laurie Jones and Jim Gall – both former students – say the original building marks a shift from ‘sandstone universities’ to ‘flat glass universities’.

“As a base facility on a campus planned for the state’s third university and home to Australia’s first interdisciplinary studies in environmental science, it marks a turning point in the 1970s in traditional ideas of ‘universities of sandstone” into “flat glass universities,” where teaching styles align with modernist architecture,” their submission reads.

A Change.org petition has also been launched in support of the legacy app.

“Is the teaching of environmental science and sustainability at Griffith University of value when the university cannot move away from materialism, consumerism and a craze for new things? , the technologies that will soon be outdated? it says.

UND responds to Catholic organization’s concern over possible gender-inclusive policy


BISMARCK, ND (KFYR) — The president of the University of North Dakota hosted a press conference on Friday to discuss concerns about a proposed policy raised by the Catholic Conference of North Dakota earlier this week.

UND administrators say there are good reasons for the school to implement a new gender-neutral policy.

“Every student or employee has the right to be protected from harassment or discrimination. The draft policy is intended to affirm our support for our LGBTQ+ members, and in particular our transgender and non-binary members,” said UND President Andrew Armacost.

The Catholic Conference of North Dakota sent a letter to Catholic high school students urging parents to consider the proposed policy when looking for colleges.

Part of the letter read:[The proposed policy] embraces and demands acceptance of a particular gender and language ideology that is contrary to Catholic teaching and infringes on freedom of expression and religious rights.

The Catholic Conference agrees with the University on the issue of prioritizing student safety from harassment. However, they believe that the proposed policy is too broad.

“The intention was to draw attention to the constitutional issues as they move forward on this project so they can resolve it. Because, if the intent of (the policy) is to prevent student harassment on campus, that’s laudable. But politics went way beyond that,” said NDCC executive director Christopher Dodson.

One of the concerns in the letter relates to accommodation: the Catholic Conference has expressed concern that students may be forced to share a room with a student of the opposite sex. But, according to President Armacost, this is not the case.

“That is not true. The draft policy does not address the specifics of the housing allocation process. The wording of the draft policy is intended to provide assurance that trans and gender non-conforming students will have access to a accommodation consistent with their gender identity,” Armacost said.

President Armacost says the housing office will work with students whose legal sex is different from their gender identity, and this will enable a lifestyle where they will do best.

After the press conference, the NDCC said that while they appreciated clarification on the issue of housing, “students should not, however, have to rely on obtaining an exemption from the on-campus housing policy or on the request for a change of roommate to ensure that the student is placed with a person of the same sex.

According to Armacost, the policy will not be implemented for several months.

After Friday’s press conference, the NDCC said in a statement that its original letter was not addressed to UND, its students or parents of students. Rather, it was intended to inform Catholic high school students as they made decisions about college plans.

Copyright 2022 KFYR. All rights reserved.