Quick Hits: The last Caribou

first_imgFortnite billionaire is saving forests in Western North CarolinaTim Sweeny, owner of North Carolina-based Epic Games, which produces mega-hits such as Fortnite, is quietly using his fortune to conserve the mountains in Western North Carolina. Since 2008, Sweeny has spent millions to preserve and protect nearly 40,000 acres of land, making him one of the largest private landowners in North Carolina. Sweeny has used his money to purchase 1,500 acres to expand Mount Mitchell State Park and spent $15 million to protect 7,000 acres of the Box Creek Wilderness. Sweeny also purchased 193 acres in Alamance County, guaranteeing that the land would not be developed. Just last year, he purchased a 1,500 acre tract of land known as Stone Hills which had been slated to be turned into two championship golf courses, a hotel and spa, over 1,000 homes and up to 90,000 square feet of retail, dining and office space. Sweeny plans to hold the land until he can find a permanent nature conservation home for it. The last caribou in the contiguous United States has been removed from the wildThis week a team of biologists captured a mountain caribou in the Selkirk Mountains just north of the U.S.- Canada border. The female caribou is believed to be the last member of the last herd to regularly cross into the lower 48 states from Canada. The captured caribou was moved to a captive rearing pen. In about a month, biologists plan to release the caribou, along with two other caribou from a different endangered herd, back into the wild into a larger and more stable Canadian herd. The fate of the animals is unclear and biologists cannot say if there will ever be caribou in the continental United States again. US offshore drilling rule revisions will likely be challenged by statesRevisions to a US offshore drilling safety rule are being held up because of the government shutdown, but when the changes are finalized they will likely be challenged in court by multiple states. The revisions make changes to the Blowout Preventer Systems and Well Control Rule that was implemented in 2016 in response to the Deepwater Horizon explosion and spill. The current rule requires better performance of the blowout preventers that act as a last line of defense for an out-of-control offshore well. Opponents of the rule revision have criticized the administration for weakening offshore safety regulations. The most likely case against the revisions was laid out in August letter to the director of the Interior’s Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement. Ten state attorneys general, including those from North Carolina and Virginia, signed the letter.last_img read more

DIY virus protection: Hong Kongers making own masks amid shortages

first_imgSome are turning to DIY solutions — albeit of questionable quality.Judy, a 73-year-old out shopping in the district of Wanchai, was spotted in a homemade mask.”I found the material — my handkerchief, and some non-woven fabric — and I combined them and used some wire for the top, and some elastic,” she told AFP, declining to give her surname.While Hong Kong’s economy reels, business has been brisk on one street in the working-class Sham Shui Po district that boasts many fabric and tailoring shops. A colorful array of cloth masks hangs outside many of the cramped storefronts as shoppers haggle over the din of whirring sewing machines.Elase Wong, a tailor, said she was giving away her face mask sewing design.”Some people couldn’t buy any masks… So if they can make them themselves, that would be great,” she told AFP. “I hope everyone can achieve self-sufficiency.”Pop-up assembly lineThe cost of masks has skyrocketed with scarcity and the government resisting price controls or rationing, as in nearby Macau and Taiwan.A set of 50 simple surgical masks can sell for up to HK$300 (US$40), while the top of the range N95 variety is going for as high as HK$1,800 a box.A film director surnamed Tong was this week putting the finishing touches to a face mask assembly line in an industrial building.”I was shocked by the price of face masks,” he told AFP.”I did some research and realized that masks are not that difficult to make. Why do people have to bear such a high cost? Because there is no production line in Hong Kong”.With the help of an investor he managed to import a machine from India, and plans to ship more. Currently in the testing phase, the device will produce 60-80 surgical masks per minute from Saturday in a dust-free room. Tong said the masks will be sold online for HK$1-2 each, limited to one box per person. The administration of chief executive Carrie Lam says it is doing all it can to secure new supplies of face masks amid a global shortage.Output has been ramped up on a prison labor production line and there are plans to set aside HK$1.5 billion to support the creation of domestic factories.The lack of stockpiles has sparked criticism of Lam, even from among her pro-Beijing political allies.Many have expressed surprise that a city which suffered 299 deaths during the 2003 SARS outbreak was not better prepared.Since SARS, which Beijing initially covered up, Hong Kongers have embraced higher communal hygiene standards and face masks have long been a common sight, especially during the winter flu season.Joseph Kwan, a public health expert from the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, said widespread mask use during SARS also lowered cases of the common cold that year.In a tightly packed city like Hong Kong, new viruses will “spread like wildfire if nobody wears a mask”, he said. “It would be a public health disaster”. Topics :center_img With chronic face mask shortages in the midst of a virus outbreak, Hong Kongers have started making their own — with a pop-up production line and seamstresses churning them out on sewing machines.In one of the most densely populated cities on earth, face masks have become hot property as people scramble for protection against the new deadly coronavirus.Long queues — sometimes thousands strong — routinely crop up outside pharmacies when supplies are in, and there is anger at the government’s failure to have stockpiled.last_img read more

Premier League title race: Sergio Aguero surrenders to Liverpool

first_img Loading… The Reds have dropped only two points this season and re-established their 13-point lead over second-placed Leicester on Sunday. Sergio Aguero does not believe it will be possible for Manchester City to catch Liverpool at the top of the Premier League.Advertisement Promoted ContentTop 7 Best Car Manufacturers Of All TimeThe Funniest Prankster Grandma And Her GrandsonBest Car Manufacturers In The World10 Risky Jobs Some Women DoThese Guys Are Turning 50 This Year. Feeling Old Yet?What Happens To Your Brain When You Play Too Much Video Games?8 Things You Didn’t Know About CoffeeTop 10 Historical Mysteries That Still Haven’t Been SolvedCan Playing Too Many Video Games Hurt Your Body?The Models Of Paintings Whom The Artists Were Madly In Love WithRidiculously Expensive Things The Rock Spends His Money On12 Flicks That Almost Ended Their Stars’ Careers City are a point further back despite their 2-0 victory over Sheffield United at the Etihad Stadium.Pep Guardiola’s side have won the title in each of the last two seasons but Aguero does not think they will make it three in a row.“Now, Liverpool is too hard. We have to focus just on winning because we need to play Champions League next season,” the striker, who scored his 10th league goal of the campaign on Sunday, said. “We have to play the same way and see what happens.”Guardiola echoed the thoughts of the Argentinian in his own post-match comments, insisting that City should turn their focus to 2020/21.The Catalan has previously dismissed rumours that he could walk away from Manchester at the end of the season, having never completed more than four seasons in charge of the same club.“No. It’s unrealistic to think about that [catching Liverpool],” he said.“A team which has the numbers of Liverpool, why should we think about that? It’s just preparing, play good and better to be as close to the top of the league as we can, prepare for the knockout competitions and for the next season.Manchester City striker Sergio Aguero admits defeat in Premier League title #SUFC #twitterblades #FNH https://t.co/zqyJraMxvY— Blades News Hound (@BladesFNH) December 30, 2019Read Also: EPL: Aguero, De Bruyne net as Man City see off Sheffield United“Every game helps us to improve for next season. Hopefully we can do better.“The motivation is to improve because when we improve we win games and that is the way to live better. That is the best motivation for all of us. Even in the past.“Now we recover for three days, thank you for three days to recover, and prepare for the next game against Everton. That is what you have to do.”FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmail分享 last_img read more

Dhoni resigns as India ODI and T20 captain

first_img(REUTERS) – Mahendra Singh Dhoni has stepped down as India’s limited-overs captain but will still be available for selection, the Indian cricket board (BCCI) said yesterday.“Mahendra Singh Dhoni has informed the BCCI that he wishes to step down as the captain of the Indian Cricket Team from the One-Day Internationals and the T20 Internationals formats of the game,” the BCCI said in a statement.Dhoni not only holds the record for most matches as captain of an international side, with 331 games across all formats, but also is the only captain to have won all three ICC Trophies — ODI World Cup, World Twenty20 and Champions Trophy.Considered India’s most successful ever captain, Dhoni stunned everyone when he announced his decision to quit Test cricket in the middle of an Australian tour in 2014, handing the mantle to Virat Kohli who is likely to be also given the reins in the shorter formats.The BCCI, however, did not immediately name a successor.The 35-year-old Dhoni, who was named captain in 2007, led the cricket-crazed country to the top of the world Test rankings and is the only player to captain in more than 50 matches in each of the three formats.Having made his international debut in 2004, Dhoni, whose life inspired a Bollywood biopic in 2016, quickly rose up the ranks in Indian cricket.After being named captain of the Twenty20 side in 2007, Dhoni achieved immediate success as he guided India to the World Twenty20 title in South Africa.One of Dhoni’s most iconic moments came in 2011 when he hit a massive six to end the country’s 28-year wait for the ODI World Cup.“On behalf of every Indian cricket fan and the BCCI, I would like to thank MS Dhoni for his outstanding contribution as the captain of the Indian team across all formats,” BCCI chief executive Rahul Johri said in a statement.“Under his leadership, the Indian team has touched new heights and his achievements will remain etched forever in the annals of Indian cricket.”Dhoni led India in 199 ODIs, of which he won 110 and lost 74, and was captain in 72 Twenty20s, of which India won 41 and lost 28. His last series as captain came against New Zealand at home, where he led the Indian side to a 3-2 series win.Dhoni will be available for selection for the ODI and Twenty20 series against England, starting January 15.last_img read more

Allicock chides “dependency syndrome” of Indigenous communities

first_imgJunior Minister of Indigenous Peoples’ Affairs Valarie Garrido-Lowe has posited that more should be done to foster the growth of the cassava producing sector. She made these comments at a recent meeting with executives of the National Toshaos Council (NTC), where the minister indicated that such diversification would improve the livelihoods of Indigenous peoples.Garrido-Lowe suggested that derivative products of cassava, an Amerindian staple, are ideal due to its financial and health benefits: “[There are] financial benefits of cassava; we can explore cassava snacks like cheesy cassava, garlic cassava, curio cassava; we should explore these things so that well packaged snacks into our supermarkets from the cassava here that is so healthy, because it doesn’t have gluten.”Junior Indigenous Peoples’ Affairs MinisterValarie Garrido-LoweShe noted that communities are capable of producing value-added products and have a more modernised cassava industry, pointing out that there are intentions to engage the University of Guyana on developing the industry: “We could talk with IAST (Institute of Applied Science & Technology) and try to get something going.”She further added that the rights of Indigenous peoples are likely to be better advocated as the NTC will see the establishment of its Secretariat, which she explained, will be given financial support from the Inter-American Development Bank.“People expect so much from us because we have promised so much but we will fulfil promises but we will go so many at a time and I am sure that you will get your secretariat from where you will be able to function properly with staff and I am happy to hear that IDB will be supporting financially,” she noted.Meanwhile, Minister of Indigenous Peoples’ Affairs Sydney Allicock told the NTC that subventions aside, they should think “outside the box” in attaining finance from other avenues. He suggested that the NTC could solicit funds from Indigenous Communities, in rotation, to fund its work in advocating its causes.“If the NTC gets itself really organised, I am certain that every month, each one of these villages could contribute $10,000 to your purse,” he noted, adding that the NTC can then go into negotiations with the bank in development projects relating to cottage industries that will sustain livelihood of the Amerindian communities.“If you have cassava – 6 bottles of casreep every month, you add 6 families, change them every month, you will get $10,000 coming into your coffer… what we would like to move away from, is that dependency syndrome…when you work and sweat for what you need, you have more value for it,” Allicock noted.He also noted that Indigenous communities should assume responsibility of many vehicles which were allocated in the past are currently in need of repairs. He however added that his government and ministry would continue efforts in supporting: “economic development, respect to ourselves, and to have an education system that would allow other Guyanese to understand how we live,” Allicock said.Meanwhile, the many concerns raised at the recently concluded National Toshaos Conference will be addressed at the upcoming NTC executive meeting in October.last_img read more