Population genetics of three sympatric springtail species (Hexapoda: Collembola) from the South Shetland Islands: evidence for a common biogeographic pattern

first_imgThree sympatric springtail species, from the South Shetland Islands archipelago in the maritime Antarctic, are analysed here in a common biogeographic and evolutionary framework. This study was designed to compare their population genetic structure using the same molecular marker. Haplotype data for the mitochondrial cox1 gene have been obtained for seven populations of Folsomotoma octooculata and are compared with the data obtained, in previous studies and the current one, for the sympatric species Cryptopygus antarcticus antarcticus, and Friesea grisea. Molecular data obtained are consistent with the hypothesis that all species have been present in the archipelago since well before the last glacial maximum (around 20 000 ybp) and that their early diversifications appear to be linked with known interglacial periods in the region. These springtails may have survived the last glacial cycle in local refugia, from which they dispersed subsequently to ice-free ground re-exposed during the current interglacial period. The populations of the different species diversified at different times, although all of them are within the Pleistocene epoch. We propose that the earliest diversification of haplotypes in all three springtails in this archipelago occurred from local refugia in Livingston I., with subsequent spread of some haplotypes throughout the South Shetland Islands.last_img read more

Brasenose leads Veggie Pledge

first_imgOver 1,000 people have signed up to participate in this year’s Veggie Pledge, with Braesnose taking an early lead in the college league.The Veggie Pledge is an annual scheme organised by the Oxford Student Union aiming to encourage people to reduce their meat intake throughout the month of November.Colleges are encouraged to promote Veggie Pledge through a league table. As of last Sunday, Braesnose College is currently in the lead with 119 students, 20% of the college, signed up. Wadham is in second place, with 95 college members signed up. The college has also recently passed a motion to have an additional meat-free day provided by the catering department.VP Charities and Community Officer, Rosanna Greenwood called the Pledge “the flagship campaign” for environmentalism.Greenwood told Cherwell: “Now in its 3rd Year, Veggie Pledge is bigger than ever – smashing 1000 pledges! “It’s the flagship campaign encouraging students to be more environmentally and sustainably conscious throughout the month of November.“Everyone can be involved in Veggie Pledge in some way whether reducing meat intake, taking Tupperware to Gloucester Green Market or using less palm oil.“Pledging is open until Wednesday 7th, so make sure you join the Facebook group and take part!”Last year’s winner, St Hugh’s College, have passed a motion to only provide vegetarian food at JCR meetings throughout the month.The motion noted the college’s “strong legacy of commitment to the November Veggie Pledge”, with 282 pledges made last year.A number of eateries in Oxford are also offering discounted for those participating in the scheme this month, with Bill’s offering 20% discount on all vegetarian and vegan food and Crisis Cafe on George Street offering a 15% discount.last_img read more

EPA Releases PFAS Groundwater Guidance for Federal Cleanup Programs

first_imgU.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued Interim Recommendations for Addressing Groundwater Contaminated with Perfluorooctanoic Acid (PFOA) and Perfluorooctanesulfonate (PFOS) under federal cleanup programs, a priority action under EPA’s PFAS Action Plan. Aggressively addressing per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) is an active and ongoing effort for the agency.“Today, we are delivering on one of our most important commitments under the PFAS Action Plan,” said EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler. “The interim recommendations will provide clear and consistent guidance for federal cleanup programs and will help protect drinking water resources in communities across the country. This is a critical tool for our state, tribal, and local partners to use to protect public health and address these chemicals.”“We welcome the EPA’s release of the Interim Recommendations for Addressing Groundwater Contaminated with PFOA/PFAS under federal cleanup programs,” said the Association of State and Territorial Solid Waste Management Officials (ASTSWMO).  “Our members are working every day to address this important issue across the country and we look forward to reviewing the just released document, which we hope provides clear and consistent guidance on this evolving national issue.”Federal agencies and states have asked EPA to provide guidance on this issue, and EPA is following through on its commitment. After reviewing public comments on the agency’s April 2019 draft guidance, EPA is finalizing these interim recommendations based on the available data and scientific information on PFAS toxicity. EPA acknowledges that the scientific information on these compounds continues to evolve. As part of the PFAS Action Plan, EPA is continuing to develop and assess toxicity information, test methods, laboratory methods, analytical methods, exposure models, and treatment methods, among other research efforts to improve our knowledge about this class of chemicals. As new information becomes available on other PFAS chemicals, the agency will consider additional recommendations as the agency advances its knowledge of these other substances.Today’s ActionWith these interim recommendations, EPA is prioritizing public health impacts by focusing on addressing groundwater that is a current or potential source of drinking water. The guidance recommends:Using a screening level of 40 parts per trillion (ppt) to determine if PFOA and/or PFOS is present at a site and may warrant further attention.Screening levels are risk-based values that are used to determine if levels of contamination may warrant further investigation at a site.Using EPA’s PFOA and PFOS Lifetime Drinking Water Health Advisory level of 70 ppt as the preliminary remediation goal (PRG) for contaminated groundwater that is a current or potential source of drinking water, where no state or tribal MCL or other applicable or relevant and appropriate requirements (ARARs) are available or sufficiently protective.PRGs are generally initial targets for cleanup, which may be adjusted on a site-specific basis as more information becomes available.FacebookTwitterCopy LinkEmailSharelast_img read more

State Champs: O.C. Wins Girls Soccer Title

first_imgBy LESLEY GRAHAMThe Ocean City High School girls soccer program won its first ever Group 3 state title Saturday morning, and Head Coach Kelly Halliday summed it up perfectly in three words: “Best. Day. Ever.”The Red Raiders defeated Ramapo High School 3-0 on a blustery morning at Kean University, the site of the New Jersey state playoffs. The win brought the Red Raiders season record to a near-perfect 24-1-1, while Ramapo ended its run with a 19-2 overall record.Ocean City posted its 19th shutout on the year, pairing its high-powered offense with a dominant defense that allowed only nine goals all season long. The Red Raiders’ offense led the state in scoring, demolishing the previous scoring records for both goals and assists during a season for the team.In the championship game, Hannah Keane got on the scoreboard early for the Red Raiders, finding the back of the net in the 10th minute of play in what would be the winning goal for Ocean City.“That first goal was pure grit,” Halliday said. “When that first goal went it, I just knew it was our game.”The Ocean City players let their emotions loose following their championship victory.But with a state-leading 114 goals scored this season, the Red Raiders weren’t about to rest on their laurels with a 1-0 lead.Ocean City was aware that Ramapo could easily close the gap and make it a game, posting a number of shots on goal in the first half that Red Raider senior goalkeeper Abbey Fenton was able to ward off thanks to the strong play of the defensive backs, including senior Delaney Lappin.“Our girls went out there and played that game like it was any other game, like they have all season long,” Halliday said. “We executed our game plan, worked together and never doubted that we deserved to be there.”Carrying a “State Champs” banner, Ocean City High School supporters greet the girls soccer team as it arrives back in town.Sophomore Summer Reimet scored twice – once in the first half to give Ocean City a little bit of a cushion, and once again in the second half to add the icing on the cake.Faith Slimmer, a junior, added one assist, on Reimet’s first goal. The combination of Reimet and Slimmer was lethal this season, as the two rewrote the record books for Ocean City, each with 35 goals on the season and six and 27 assists, respectively.As the clock dwindled down and the realization was starting to set in that Ocean City was about to capture its first ever state championship, the team celebrated and relished the victory just like they have all season – as a team.“This team has been special from day one, and for us to be able to end this season with a championship trophy just goes to show how special they are,” Halliday said. “And what makes them so special is their desire to win not for themselves, but for each other. That’s how state champions are made.”The Red Raiders pile up on the field in a post-game celebration. The Red Raiders celebrate their state title. (Photos courtesy of Kathleen Moran)last_img read more

Conservation workshops

first_imgUniversity of GeorgiaFarmers, landowners or anyone interested in finding out more about conservation programs should attend one of the two remaining Conservation, Wildlife and Farmland Protection Workshops scheduled March 4 in Tifton, Ga., and March 11 in Statesboro, Ga. “Most people don’t realize there are all types of programs available to encourage and reward conservation,” said Curt Lacy, an economist with the UGA Cooperative Extension. “These workshops help them understand which programs they need to be looking at.”Questions will be answered by experts with the UGA College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Georgia Department of Agriculture, the Georgia Soil and Water Conservation Commission and other federal, state and private organizations.Registration is $25 in advance or $35 less than one week before the workshop. This includes materials, notebooks, lunch and breaks.To find out more or to register, call 229/386-3416. Or go to the Website www.ugatiftonconference.org.last_img read more

China targets uneconomic coal-fired capacity in three-year trial program

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Bloomberg:China is pursuing a three-year pilot program, led by five of its biggest utilities, to integrate and cut some coal-fired power capacity to help the debt-saddled industry, state media reported. The pilot, which runs through 2021, will seek to consolidate coal-power assets within five northwestern regions and reduce their capacity by up to one-third, according to Shanghai Securities News, citing sources it didn’t identify.The state-owned Assets Supervision & Administration Commission, which oversees the utilities, did not immediately respond to a faxed request for comment. Calls went unanswered to the media offices of the five companies — China Huaneng Group Co., China Datang Corp., China Huadian Corp., State Power Investment Corp. and China Energy Investment Corp.The five firms had a combined 520 gigawatts of coal-fired capacity at the end of last year, according to the Shanghai Securities News report, adding that those coal power units had total combined liabilities of 1.1 trillion yuan ($156 billion) and assets worth 1.5 trillion. China’s coal plants are distributed across 30 provinces and territories, of which 15 saw losses in the coal and power business last year, according to the report.Coal plants nationwide ran at only 49% of their capacity during the third quarter, BloombergNEF analyst Hanyang Wei said in a report Tuesday, citing slower overall demand growth as the trade war with the U.S. impacts the economy, as well as competition from nuclear and hydropower.The plan to retire capacity is expected to boost profitability of some power companies, China International Capital Corp. analyst Liu Jiani said in a note. The entire industry could benefit if the program is extended to other provinces, Liu said.Under the trial program, each of the five state utilities will be tasked with leading asset consolidation and capacity reductions in one of the five provinces or territories: Huaneng in Gansu; Datang in Shaanxi; Huadian in Xinjiang; SPIC in Qinghai; and CEIC in Ningxia, the report said. The program could be expanded in the future, it added.More: China plans coal-power revamp to help ailing generators China targets uneconomic coal-fired capacity in three-year trial programlast_img read more

Honduras: Medical Teams Work Hand in Hand

first_img Honduran surgeons and their U.S. counterparts have worked side by side for years bringing medical assistance to the people of Comayagua, Honduras. In October 2011, Joint Task Force-Bravo Medical Element and Honduran surgeons completed highly needed surgeries in local hospitals. The six-person Joint Mobile Surgical Team worked together three times a week, averaging between two to five surgeries a day. “We’ve being doing this for 18 years and I’ve been on hundreds of these trips,” said Dr. Wilmer Amador, Joint Task Force-Bravo medical liaison officer. “It’s a win-win for everybody.” The JTF-Bravo Medical Element also supports military missions and humanitarian assistance and provides lifesaving surgical capability at Soto Cano Air Base. Source: Joint Task Force-Bravo By Dialogo January 01, 2012last_img read more

McWatters testifies before Senate Banking today on economic growth

first_img 11SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr NCUA Acting Chairman J. Mark McWatters is set to testify today before the Senate Banking Committee as part of the panel’s series of hearings focused on fostering economic growth.NAFCU will attend today’s hearing, which is slated to begin at 10 a.m. Eastern. The Senate Banking Committee will also hear from Federal Reserve Gov. Jerome Powell, FDIC Chairman Martin Gruenberg, Acting Comptroller of the Currency Keith Noreika and Texas banking Commissioner Charles Cooper, on behalf of the Conference of State Bank Supervisors.Earlier this month, NAFCU witness Steve Grooms, president and CEO of 1st Liberty Federal Credit Union of Great Falls, Mont., appeared before the committee and said that NAFCU stood ready to work with Congress on meaningful regulatory relief for the credit union industry.Grooms said that if Congress wants to foster economic growth, it is vital to enact relief for credit unions, including: relaxed field-of-membership restrictions; modernized credit union capital standards; exemptions from rules targeting banks and larger institutions (including Home Mortgage Disclosure Act rules); more freedom for member business lending; and a total credit union exemption from the CFPB’s rulemaking. continue reading »last_img read more

What one Binghamton organization is doing to help recovering addicts as isolation takes its toll

first_imgThe organization is also collecting used microwaves to ensure that all individuals in their recovery program are able to heat up the meals provided in the care packages. “It causes a person to sit alone with their thoughts and it might be harder for them to be distracted from cravings and their desire to use,” said Alexis Pleus, Executive Director of Truth Pharm, an addiction resource center in Binghamton. “We’re encouraging people to stay away from others to practice social distancing, but on top of that we know that substance use disorders and mental health are often co-occurring,” said Marissa Knapp, Opioid Overdose Prevention Coordinator for the Broome County Health Department. One activist says this puts addicts who are in recovery at risk of relapse and overdose. “A lot of times in those conversations people are expressing concern for a loved one they can talk about the things they’ve seen and the issues they’ve had,” she said. “We’ve gone virtual with our Narcan training and we will connect people with a person who can do Narcan training either with face time or facebook live,” she said.center_img Pleus says often times Narcan training is about more than just learning how to administer the life saving drug. Pleus says with the risk of overdose or relapse heightened, her organization decided to take action. “We’re reaching out to all of them to figure out what their specific needs are and we’re creating care packages with the hope that it will help them stay home for two weeks,” she said. BINGHAMTON (WBNG) — The isolation that comes with social distancing can be difficult for anyone but experts say it’s especially difficult for addicts in recovery who rely on community support. last_img read more

All H2N2 flu virus samples destroyed, CDC says

first_imgEditor’s note: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention told CIDRAP News on May 4 that the total number of laboratories that received test kits containing H2N2 virus samples from Meridian Bioscience Inc. was 4,614, rather than more than 6,000, as stated in this story.May 3, 2005 (CIDRAP News) – All samples of a potentially dangerous influenza virus that were sent to thousands of laboratories in 18 countries in recent months have been accounted for and destroyed, federal health officials announced today.Samples of the influenza A(H2N2) virus, which caused the flu pandemic of 1957-58, were sent to more than 6,000 labs for use in testing the labs’ ability to identify flu viruses. Most of the labs were in the United States.The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said the organizations that administer proficiency testing reported that all the samples had been destroyed. No reports of illness have been linked with possible exposure to the samples, the CDC said. The virus has not circulated since 1968, which means that most people now would have little or no immunity to it.”Certification of the destruction of the H2N2 samples contained in the proficiency testing kits effectively ends the immediate risk associated with distribution of these kits, but it is only the first step of the public health response,” the CDC said. A multiagency task force will investigate what caused the inclusion of H2N2 in the test kits, the statement added.Also today, the CDC and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) recommended that labs use stricter safety precautions when handling H2N2 virus samples. The agencies released a recommendation that labs use Biosafety Level 3 (BSL-3) instead of BSL-2 precautions when working with the virus. A similar recommendation was made for highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) viruses and for reverse-genetics research on the 1918 pandemic flu virus.Starting last fall, samples of the H2N2 virus were sent to labs in 18 countries for routine testing that usually involves more benign flu strains. Meridian Bioscience Inc. of Cleveland sent the kits on behalf of the College of American Pathologists (CAP) and three other US organizations that administer lab proficiency testing. Why the H2N2 virus was used has not been fully explained. But the virus was classified as BSL-2 at the time, which meant it could legally be used in the kits, CAP officials have said.In the testing, labs have to determine if a virus is influenza and whether it is type A or B, without identifying the subtype. But Canadian government researchers discovered in March that the virus they had been sent was H2N2, which led the World Health Organization on Apr 12 to urge labs to destroy all the samples. Most laboratories quickly did so, but a few samples were missing, which triggered an urgent search.CDC officials reported on Apr 21 that 99% of the samples had already been destroyed. News reports on Apr 25 said the last samples outside the United States had been destroyed at the American University of Beirut in Lebanon, after they were found at the Beirut airport.Earlier reports said H2N2 samples were sent to 3,747 labs under CAP auspices and to about another 2,700 labs certified by other organizations. All but about 75 labs that received the CAP samples were in the United States, reports said. How many of the other labs were in the United States has not been made clear.The biosafety recommendations released today are part of a new edition of guidelines for biomedical labs that will be published in full this fall, the CDC said. In BSL-3 labs, agents are handled with equipment designed to prevent any airborne contamination and resulting respiratory exposure for lab workers and others.With regard to the 1918 pandemic virus, the recommendations state, “Any research involving reverse genetics of the 1918 influenza strain should proceed with extreme caution. The risk to laboratory workers is unknown at the present time but the pandemic potential is thought to be significant.”In recent studies, researchers have engineered viruses similar to the 1918 pandemic strain, H1N1, and exposed mice to them in an effort to learn what made the virus so deadly. The 1918 pandemic is estimated to have killed between 50 million and 100 million people around the world.See also:CDC update on H2N2 virus situationhttp://www.cdc.gov/flu/han050305.htmCDC’s interim safety recommendations for laboratories working with H2N2 and certain other influenza viruseshttp://www.cdc.gov/flu/h2n2bsl3.htmNov 24, 2004, CIDRAP News story, “Recreated gene sheds light on lethality of 1918 flu virus”last_img read more