Too much of a good thing: sea ice extent may have forced emperor penguins into refugia during the last glacial maximum

first_imgThe relationship between population structure and demographic history is critical to understanding microevolution and for predicting the resilience of species to environmental change. Using mitochondrial DNA from extant colonies and radiocarbon-dated subfossils, we present the first microevolutionary analysis of emperor penguins (Aptenodytes forsteri) and show their population trends throughout the last glacial maximum (LGM, 19.5–16 kya) and during the subsequent period of warming and sea ice retreat. We found evidence for three mitochondrial clades within emperor penguins, suggesting that they were isolated within three glacial refugia during the LGM. One of these clades has remained largely isolated within the Ross Sea, while the two other clades have intermixed around the coast of Antarctica from Adélie Land to the Weddell Sea. The differentiation of the Ross Sea population has been preserved despite rapid population growth and opportunities for migration. Low effective population sizes during the LGM, followed by a rapid expansion around the beginning of the Holocene, suggest that an optimum set of sea ice conditions exist for emperor penguins, corresponding to available foraging area.last_img read more

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ROK Navy receives first FFX II frigate ROKS Daegu

first_img February 1, 2018 The Republic of Korea Navy has received the first of eight Daegu-class (FFX II) frigates, ROKS Daegu (FFG-818), South Korea’s Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA) announced on Thursday.Daegu is expected to become operational in the second half of 2018.The frigate was built by Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering (DSME) and launched at DSME’s Okpo shipyard in June 2016.The second ship is also being built by DSME while ships three and four will be built by Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI) under a $586 million contract DAPA contract from December 2016.FFX II frigates are improved Incheon-class (FFX) frigates. At 2800 tons, Daegu-class ships displace 500 tons more than their predecessors and measure 122 meters in length.The second batch frigates are being equipped with a 16-cell Korean vertical launching system for defense against air threats and six torpedo tubes for anti-submarine warfare. Powered by Rolls-Royce’s MT30 gas turbines, the frigates are capable of reaching speeds of 30 knots, according to DAPA.Daegu and sister ships will carry a towed array sonar system (TASS) in addition to naval guns and a Phalanx close-in weapon system.The frigates are intended for a variety of missions including anti-submarine warfare, anti-air warfare, patrol, surveillance, search and rescue and exclusive economic zone protection. View post tag: DSME Authorities Republic of Korea Navy receives first FFX II frigate ROKS Daegu Share this article View post tag: ROK Navy Back to overview,Home naval-today Republic of Korea Navy receives first FFX II frigate ROKS Daegu View post tag: FFX II View post tag: ROKS Daegu View post tag: DAPAlast_img read more

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New car bans planned for Oxford city centre

first_img“We want to express again our long term support forintegrated measures (bus gates, parking charges and improvements to publictransport and walking and cycling) to reduce congestion, improve air qualityand enhance the sustainability of the City of Oxford.” The University of Oxford supports the gates, but has concerns that they could harm the operation of the University if implemented in isolation.   Oxford Brookes University and the Oxford University StudentUnion have joined residents in supporting the bus gates. Charlie Hicks from Build Back Better Oxford told Cherwell: “Bus gates are key to a better Oxford. By cutting congestion massively through the city centre, we will be able to redesign the public spaces for people, air will be cleaner, more people will cycle and walk, we can have more open-air markets, trees, benches – you name it” Councillor Tom Hayes said: “Oxford’s narrow medieval streets are routinely clogged up with stop-go traffic, with vehicles cutting through, using the city centre as a permanent rat run. The Council has asked for residents’ views through an online consultation. What Oxford could look like, proposed by Build Back Better’s #BetterOxford The Oxford branch of Build Back Better, a Coronavirus Recovery Campaign, has backed the measures and called for a total of seven bus gates in a petition to the council. A City Council Residents Panel found that 80% of residentssupported restricting private vehicle movements in the city during the daytime. The bus gates will be in operation between 7.30 am and 6.30 pm. The City Council says: “Bus gates do not prevent access to areas of the city, however aim to redirect traffic through a different route and aims to reduce the use of the city centre as a through-route.” Only 10% of residents surveyed travelled into the city bycar, and a 2017 survey found that 70% of shoppers arrived by bus. The proposed bus gates come as part of wider measures to aid economic recovery after the pandemic. Oxfordshire County Council has committed to investing almost £3 million to support safe pedestrian and cycle spaces in cities, whilst the City Council is working to allow pedestrians and cyclists to maintain social distancing. “Colleagues across the university are concerned about how they will get to work as the new term starts and we believe this will be made more difficult – and that it could adversely affect the operation of the University – unless mitigating measures are taken in parallel with the introduction of the new bus gates,” said David Prout, Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Planning and Resources). Build Back Better Oxford has also created a series of photos of a car-free Oxford. “Broad St. and St Giles could be some of the most beautifulstreets in Europe, if they were not car parks!” The Councils have not set a duration for the bus gates, but Experimental Traffic Regulation Orders have a maximum time limit of 18 months and full public consultation is required before they can be made permanent. Ben Farmer, VP Charities and Community, Oxford SU said: “We…welcome the proposed temporary bus gates in Oxford City centre, as a good measure to reduce traffic in central Oxford and provide safer streets for walking and cycling.” One bus gate will be located on either Hythe Bridge Street or Worcester Street, and the other on St Cross Road or South Parks Road. A third bus gate will be kept under review and implemented at a later date. They will only be accessible to buses, taxis, blue badge holders, disabled tax class vehicles, and emergency services. Oxford is set to implement two temporary bus gates, restricting cars from entering certain parts of the city centre. Backed by both Oxford City Council and Oxfordshire County Council, the measure aims to reduce congestion and support Oxford’s recovery from the coronavirus pandemic. “Right now we need to support businesses and support people to shop in thecity centre, and supporting travel by buses, cycling, and walking is how we canachieve this. We can’t afford to have vehicles cutting through that don’t stop,don’t spend, and don’t support local jobs and businesses during the toughesttime they’ll ever know.” The temporary bus gates will be installed at the end of September at the earliest, but the timescale will reflect the consultation with stakeholders and the public, government guidance, and the spread of COVID-19 in Oxford. The city centre already has bus gates at High Street, GeorgeStreet, and Castle Street. Images provided by Build Back Better UK – Oxford.last_img read more

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“IS IT TRUE” JANUARY 14, 2019

first_imgTodays“Readers Poll” question is: Who was the most effective Mayor of Evansville? We hope that today’s “IS IT TRUE” will provoke honest and open dialogue concerning issues that we, as responsible citizens of this community, need to address in a rational and responsible way?IS IT TRUE that Bill Schirmer, President and CEO of Evansville Teachers Federal Credit Union, was recently honored by the Indiana Credit Union League as its Professional Achievement Award winner?  …we congratulate Mr. Schirmer for his receiving this prestiges award?IS IT TRUE we are told that a couple of local taxpayers are considering asking the city to start a $250 million dollars “GO FUND ME” account to help some struggling Eastside, Westside, Northside and Center City businesses to help them make needed improvements to their properties, sidewalks and streets in order for them to attract new customers? …they feel whats good for Downtown and North Main Street properties owners should be good enough for the business owners of other areas of the city?IS IT TRUE that the Evansville Thunderbolts have gotten nearly halfway through the season and are sitting in last place in the league they play in?…after 28 games the Thunderbolts have won exactly 4 games for a record of 4-24?…the crowd at the Saturday night loss to Peoria by a score of 6-1 was estimated to be nearly 2,000 hockey fans but pictures taken in the Ford Center and posted on a recent Facebook page make it looK like it was way less than 1,000 fans and that is being generous? …we wonder why the main stream media aren’t challenging the Thunderbolts attendance figures put out by the officials at the Ford Center?IS IT TRUE it’s a known fact that the taxpayers of Evansville tax dollars are being used to subsidized the Thunderbolts Hockey team?  …the taxpayers have a right to see the Evansville Thunderbolts financial performance numbers for the season so far?IS IT TRUE one of our posters overheard a City Council member say that Mesker Amphitheater is gonna be rebuilt, and MEXICO is going to pay for it?IS IT TRUE that after all of these years that started with the admonition by Evansville City Councilman Dr. Dan Adams at the downtown Evansville Rotary Club, Evansville is still one of the only medium sized cities in the nation not to have imposed a smoking ban indoors?…that was cowardice of the highest order and showed a government addiction to tax money from places where smokers gather?…several City Council members over the years have called upon the State of Indiana to bail them out from the albatross of a smoking ban and it has never happened?…perhaps this $2 tax will help?…high taxes on cigarettes have helped reduce smoking everywhere with or without bans and it is about time that Indiana joined the modern world?…our elected officials have hid from this issue like a child hides from a ghost?…the option to save ourselves has been squandered time and time again in the name of keeping the tax dollars flowing and the graveyards growing?IS IT TRUE that the “GoFundMe” campaign that was raising money to build a wall along the US-Mexico border did not meet its $1 billion goal, meaning the platform will begin refunding donors?IS IT TRUE it has only been almost 8 years since former Mayor Jonathan Weinzapfel proclaimed that a new downtown JW Marriot would be built with no public incentive? …that it never happened? …right after Weinzapfel left office Mayor Winnecke stepped up and made a new downtown Hotel a reality?IS IT TRUE that were told that Mayor Winnecke gave a $29 million dollar taxpayer funded incentive to an out of town Developer/Builder to build the new downtown Doubletree Hotel? …we are told right after the Hotel was opened the Mayor Winnecke give the keys of the Hotel to the out of town-of-state Developer/Builder without charging him one dollar?IS IT TRUE we wonder when Evansville Mayor Winnecke and Ivy Tech-Evansville Chancellor Jonathan Wienzapfel are going to publicly demand that newly built IU Medical School will include Ivy Tech 1,500 Medical Tech schools in their plans?  …that the taxpayers Evansville pledged $59 million dollars to insure that the new Downtown IU Medical School will house Ivy Tech Community College Medical Tech students? …could this be called a breach of contract and also a breach of the public trust?IS IT TRUE that in 2017 DMD purchased two lots located behind Gelhausen Paint on West Iowa street for the grand total of $63,000.00 in exchange for letting the public park on it when this lot was paved? …that this lot is now a first class paved public parking lot that is currently being used to park a Church bus? … we been told that the cost to turned this vacant lot into first class paved public lot to park a church bus costs the taxpayers well over $100,000? FacebookTwitterCopy LinkEmailShare We understand that sometimes people don’t always agree and discussions may become a little heated.  The use of offensive language, insults against commenters will not be tolerated and will be removed from our site.center_img Any comments posted in this column do not represent the views or opinions of the City-County Observer or our advertisers. Please go to our link of our media partner Channel 44 News located in the upper right-hand corner of the City-County Observer so you can get the up-to-date news, weather, and sports.If you would like to advertise on the CCO please contact us at City-County [email protected]: City-County Observer Comment Policy. Be kind to people. No personal attacks or harassment will not be tolerated and shall be removed from our site.last_img read more

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Freaks Action Network Announces Dave Harrington & More For Freaks Ball XIX

first_imgExperimental rock musician Dave Harrington will be just one of the featured performers at the upcoming Freaks Ball XIX at The Bell House in Brooklyn, New York next month. The one-night event will take place on February 9th, with a portion of ticket proceeds going to benefit the Rodney Speed Scholarship Fund at the Berklee College of Music.Dave Harrington’s musical arrangement at the event is being branded as “Drums -> Space,” in relation to the highly psychedelic instrumental portion of Grateful Dead concerts back in the day. Drummer Kenny Wolleson (Sean Lennon, Norah Jones) and self-taught multi-instrumentalist Shahzad Ismaily will also take part in the experimental set, along with more artists to be announced closer to February 9th. The show will also feature late-night performances by local Afrobeat group Kaleta & Super Yamba Band, and Brooklyn-based western swing band Smokey’s Round-Up. Attendees who are hoping for more of a psychedelic experience to go with the night’s performances will be able to wander into the visual abyss with a light show courtesy of Macrodose.The Freaks Action Network has been one of the active leaders in utilizing live music and (mostly) jam-based artists to help raise awareness for good causes. Proceeds raised at the recent Freaks Action Network Holiday Jam in Brooklyn last month (which tied into a fan-friendly silent auction) went to benefit cancer research organizations including METAvivor and Cycle for Survival. Items which fans were able to bid on ranged from dinner with Joe Russo’s Almost Dead guitarist Scott Metzger, to a “Let Oteil Sing” shirt signed by Dead & Company bassist Oteil Burbridge.Speaking of Dave Harrington, the improvisational guitarist and his band shared a new single earlier this week with“Belgrade Fever”. The track will appear on their forthcoming studio album, Pure Imagination, No Country, which is scheduled to arrive on February 1st via Yeggs Records.Dave Harrington Group – “Bellgrade Fever” – Official Audio[Video: Various Artists]Inquiring music fans can click here to purchase tickets to the February 9th show.last_img read more

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Plant diseases

first_imgBeautiful plants often don’t live up to their potential. Getting to the root of problems like disease and wilt sometimes starts with a look in the mirror, says University of Georgia experts. “A lot of how people grow their plants can lead to disease,” said Elizabeth Little, a UGA plant pathologist with the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences. “Improper siting and overwatering are the biggest issues we see… most of what I see can be alleviated by people making decisions that are better for the plant.”In order for disease to occur, a plant must be susceptible, the disease-causing pathogen must be present and the environment must be favorable for growth. Environmental factors like heat, drought, light and air circulation can affect a plant’s susceptibility to disease. “Disease is everywhere. It’s always present in soil and the atmosphere,” said Bob Westerfield, a horticulturist with UGA Cooperative Extension. “Disease clings onto something that is in a weakened state.” Stressed plants are more susceptible to disease. Before planting, get a soil test, and adjust the soil for optimum plant growth. Instead of crowding plants, use proper spacing to allow for air circulation and plant growth. Waterlogged or drought-stricken? “The most common occurrence of disease we see is through the mismanagement of water,” Westerfield said. “In most cases the soil was never prepared properly so it is soggy and doesn’t allow the water to drain off the roots.” Plants suffering from too little or too much water often exhibit the same symptoms: yellowing leaves, shedding of older leaves and wilting. Soil-borne fungi like Pythium, phytophthora and rhizoctonia are a few threats to wet soils. To lessen the odds of developing root rot and to increase drainage, add organic matter, install drains and don’t plant too deeply. Humid hostAnother common disease in Georgia is powdery mildew, characterized by white fungal growth on the surface of leaves, stems and flowers. The disease thrives in humid environments and is common on woody plants like roses, crape myrtles, dogwoods and oaks. Reduce humidity – and the likelihood of developing this disease – by increasing air circulation around the plant and removing plant debris. And irrigate cautiously. “If irrigating with a sprinkler, apply water once a week in the morning,” Little said. “If not, fungal or bacterial problems may set in.” Choose plants that work If trying to grow a non-native plant, help the plant adapt to the hot-dry Georgia climate by mulching around the base. Mulch will help hold moisture at the roots. “Gardening is a learning experience,” she said. “I’ve tried a lot of things I thought I could grow here to learn what to do.” Putting plants in the right place can limit the threat of disease, too. “People get off base on where a plant should be planted,” Westerfield said. “A plant like a Leyland cypress looks unassuming in a two-gallon pot, but when planted too close to the house, the tree can grow 20 feet in a few years, becoming stressed and crowded and susceptible to canker disease.” Too many chemicalsChemicals sprayed on lawns can drift and spread to trees, shrubs and flowers planted nearby and inadvertently kill them. “A lot of herbicides are being used in lawns, and we do get a lot of injury on plants from drift and uptake,” Little said. Little warns homeowners to use caution when applying chemicals to their landscape. “Homeowners assume chemicals are safe because they are being sold, and that is not the case,” she said.last_img read more

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McWatters questions vendor authority, reg relief

first_img ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr NCUA Board Member Mark McWatters, quoted in Credit Union Times, strongly criticized the agency for “asking for more regulation,” referring to NCUA’s push for third-party vendor oversight in testimony for a Senate Banking Committee earlier this month.McWatters said such authority would cause an NCUA budget increase and called the episode “embarrassing.”At the hearing, NCUA Director of Examination and Insurance Director Larry Fazio said obtaining examination and enforcement over third-party vendors – credit union service organizations and others – is NCUA’s “top legislative priority.”NAFCU continues to oppose giving NCUA direct authority over third-party vendors; it believes such authority is unnecessary since NCUA already requires credit unions to ensure the vendors with which they maintain working relationships provide reports directly to the agency.“What little political capital credit unions have on Capitol Hill was squandered by going to a regulatory relief hearing and asking for more regulation,” McWatters told CU Times. “Now, I know NCUA tried to say, ‘well, if you give us vendor authority, it will really decrease the regulations on individual credit unions.’ But, I don’t know anyone who really believes that.” continue reading »last_img read more

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CFO Focus: The economic skies are darkening

first_img ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr continue reading » As we enter the final fiscal quarter of 2019, the skies are darkening on the U.S. economy and I believe will only get worse as the quarter progresses.Key segments of gross domestic product, primarily business investment (not only capital spending but also in the hiring of labor) and government spending have been operating with a great deal of leverage. This leverage greatly enhanced GDP growth over the past two years and now will exacerbate economic decline. While I do not believe the Fed will ease at its Oct. 30 meeting, the board will all but say that it will ease at their Dec. 11 meeting. I think the 10-year Treasury will challenge its all-time low in yield of 1.36 (set July 2016) before the year is out.U.S. business capital spending had been strong up until the last few months. Much of this investment was supercharged by the sharp cut in corporate taxes at the end of 2017. Additionally, before 2017, there was historically cheap and plentiful funding for businesses, both investment grade and non-investment grade, afforded by the high yield bond and loan markets.Regarding the above mentioned cheap and affordable funding, the high yield leveraged loan market has ballooned to $1.3 trillion over the last three to four years. Rates have been historically low for non-investment grade credits and protective covenants, normally found in loans to lower-credit borrowers, have been loosened or abandoned all together. Covenants protect lenders by establishing triggers that warn lenders if cash flow or capital gets below established levels. If covenants are triggered, lenders can stop borrowers from embarking on additional expenditures. The lack of covenants increases the risk for the lenders.last_img read more

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‘It was very quiet’: Team members recall Wuhan evacuation mission

first_imgIt was on Friday evening, Jan 31, when the Health Ministry’s crisis center head Budi Sylvana received the order to join a rescue team to be dispatched to China’s coronavirus-hit Hubei province, just as he was leaving office that day.He said that, before he got the order, he had heard the announcement by Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi about the evacuation of some 245 Indonesian nationals from Wuhan to be conducted within 24 hours but had not expected to be directly involved. Unlike Budi, Tony Wibawa from the Foreign Ministry’s directorate of citizen protection said he had worked on a plan for the evacuation since Jan. 23, when the Chinese government announced a lockdown in Wuhan.Since then, he said, the directorate had worked with the Indonesian Embassy in Beijing to collect data on citizens in Wuhan.“So, to a certain extent, we already had a plan once we received the order for the evacuation,” he said.On Jan 30, President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo ordered the immediate evacuation of all Indonesian citizens.On the ground, a so-called “team of five” consisting of embassy officials in Beijing was tasked with going to Wuhan to prepare the evacuation.One of the team members, Arianto Surojo, said the team went to Changsha on the morning of Jan. 31 and traveled to Wuhan by car.“After arriving in Wuhan, we immediately coordinated with the students, and that night we got the landing permit for the plane the next day,” he said.The biggest challenge was the fact that the students were widely dispersed, with some located as far as 500 kilometers from Wuhan.“We had to gather them all at the airport in the evening before leaving at night,” he said.He said the whole process was very fast because of the negotiations conducted at all levels, from the Foreign Minister to the director level as well as from the ambassador’s office in Beijing and with the foreign affairs office at the provincial level.“We were facing an abnormal situation and all of us needed to get permits, including a landing permit and flight clearance, while facing the lockdown situation on the ground,” he said.Retno said she had barely got any sleep for at least two nights before and during the evacuation, starting on Jan. 31 when the advance team went to Wuhan.“I get goose bumps just thinking about it now. When the team reached the border, I asked Ari how much further [before reaching Wuhan], and also when they finally met with the citizens in Wuhan. I called them to give them some encouragement, because they had to be fit for the evacuation,” she said.Meanwhile, two days before the evacuation, Batik Air captain Destyo Usodo was notified about the assignment, and he said he was very hesitant.“But I was reassured that all the mitigation and hazard identification had been assessed and that we already had a mitigation plan. I was also told that we would only bring the healthy citizens home, and that made me more confident,” he said.The plane took off from Soekarno-Hatta International Airport in Tangerang, Banten, on Feb. 1 at approximately 1:10 p.m. Destyo said he had been in close communication with the mission controls of Batik Air and the Indonesian Air Force.“When I landed at Wuhan Tianhe International Airport, it was very quiet, even though the lights were all on, there was no activity in sight,” he said, adding that the only other aircraft was one from Air India, which landed 10 minutes after Batik Air for the Indian evacuation mission.In the end, the plane only carried 238 Indonesians and one foreign national home, as four people refused to be evacuated, while three others had high fever at the time of departure.“When we [finally] entered [Indonesian airspace], I welcomed all Indonesian citizens back to Indonesia, our beloved country,” the captain said.Topics : “I knew the whole system was already in place, so I was relaxed. I did not think I was going to be assigned to go to Wuhan, because we were only responsible for preparing the evacuation needs. At the last minute before I was going home, the Health Minister ordered us to go. As a human being and someone who understood the nature of the virus, I was really shocked,” he said at a welcoming event in Jakarta on Tuesday.Budi was among several officials on the team tasked with repatriating Indonesian nationals and one foreign spouse of an Indonesian citizen from Wuhan, the epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak, as well as other cities in Hubei province, in early February.They all had to undergo a 14-day quarantine in Natuna from Feb. 2 to Feb. 15, and all have been declared free of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).The evacuation team consisted of 42 people, including nine cabin crew members, a pilot, a copilot and representatives of the Foreign Ministry, the Health Ministry and the Indonesian Military (TNI).last_img read more

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Norwegian oil fund ups real estate exposure via US spending spree

first_imgNorges Bank Investment Management (NBIM) has increased its exposure to real estate as it targets office and retail properties in established markets.In its 2013 results presentation today, the bank said investments for its real estate portfolio accounted for 1% of its fund at the end of 2013, up from 0.7% a year earlier.The mandate to invest in real estate was broadened from 1 January 2013 to include countries outside Europe – with the US first stop.A first property investment in the US was made at the start of last year via the $600m (€438m) acquisition of a 49.9% stake in a five-asset portfolio in Boston, New York and Washington. A further $684m was spent on a 45% stake in a New York office building in the fourth quarter, coinciding with the $238m purchase of a 47.5% stake in a Boston office building.The US now accounts for 18.7% of the bank’s real estate portfolio.The UK and France account for 27% and 22.5%,, respectively of investments made by NBIM.The investor has typically taken half stakes in the real estate it has acquired in both Europe and more recently the US.Last year, it paid €388m for 50% of two buildings in Germany.A 50% stake in a portfolio of 195 European logistics properties was bought for €1bn at the start of 2013.NBIM’s real estate investments returned 11.8% last year.Measured in local currency, rental income contributed 4.6% of the return, while changes to the value of properties and debt and currency fluctuations both contributed 3.8%.However, transaction costs for real estate purchases resulted in a 0.4% hit.Investment in property is, it added, being gradually increased to as much as 5% of the value of the overall fund.last_img read more

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