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West Nile virus outbreaks

first_imgSouthern house mosquitoes often develop in storm drains, which make better homes when they’re not flooded with storm water. When there’s not much rain, these mosquitos thrive in the puddles and basins of standing water left in slow moving drainpipes. The Georgia cities that have seen the most West Nile virus activity over the years are those with older storm sewer systems, like Albany, metro Atlanta and some of the older parts of Savannah and Augusta, Gray said. Birds — the southern house mosquito’s favorite prey and the main carriers of West Nile virus — also crowd around water sources during a time of drought. A more concentrated bird and mosquito population means the virus can spread from birds to mosquitoes to people more quickly, Gray said. While southern house mosquitos are more prevalent in some regions than in others, Gray warns that everyone in the state should take precautions against being bit by mosquitos and possibly contracting West Nile virus. Wearing light-colored clothing will help keep mosquitos at bay, but the most effective thing people can do to protect themselves is use insect repellent whenever they’re outside in a mosquito-prone area — like on a ball field, out in the yard or out in the woods, Gray said. Gray prefers products with DEET because they have been tested and proven safe for children as young as two months old. There are several other commercially available, EPA approved repellents, like picaridin, lemon eucalyptus oil and IR3535. “I don’t recommend trying a homemade repellent,” Gray said. “Mosquito-born diseases are serious. They cause encephalitis — an inflammation of the nervous system. People need to take this seriously.” In addition to repelling the pests, people can help cut down on the mosquito population by getting rid of anything around their home that could hold standing water and provide the insects with an additional breeding habitats. They can also purchase larvacidal briquettes to use in fishponds, rain barrels or rain gardens that can’t be emptied. Homeowners also need to make any needed repairs to window screens to keep mosquitoes from coming inside the house. For more information about West Nile virus, visit Georgia’s Public Health website at http://health.state.ga.us. West Nile virus usually peaks between Aug. 15 and Sep. 15 in Georgia, but this year doctors are seeing an earlier start. Entomologists and public health officials are worried that a near record number of Georgians will be sickened with West Nile virus this year. “Having 14 human cases (in Georgia) by mid-August is very unusual,” said Elmer Gray, a public health entomologist with the University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences. “We’re just entering peak mosquito season — and certainly peak West Nile virus season — and it will keep going on until the days start cooling off and getting shorter.” Nationwide, public health officials have reported 693 West Nile virus diagnoses in almost 40 states, with Texas bearing the brunt of the outbreak with 537 cases and 19 deaths as of Aug. 22, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Public health officials in Dallas County, Texas, have declared a public health emergency as they grapple with the mosquito-born, flu-like illness, according to a news release issued by Dallas County. Older people and people with suppressed immune systems are particularly vulnerable to the disease, but it has seriously sickened some healthy people, too. About 1 in 5 of the people exposed to the virus through a mosquito bite will show symptoms, but most of those will be minor. Many people assume they have a summer cold or flu and will go undiagnosed, Gray said. Since West Nile virus was first recorded in Georgia in 2001, the state’s reported caseload has varied from as few as six cases to as many as 55 in 2003 and 2007, respectively. In 2011 Georgia saw 25 cases. The severity of this year’s outbreak has to do with the weather. “The species that transmits West Nile virus — the southern house mosquito — actually does well when it is drier,” Gray said. last_img read more

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Australia’s Suncorp to stop financing, insuring oil and gas industry by 2025

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享The Guardian:Major Australian insurer Suncorp will end any financing or insuring of the oil and gas industry by 2025, adding to the group’s existing ban on support for new thermal coal projects.The insurer revealed on Friday it had already stopped insuring, underwriting or directly investing in new oil and gas projects and would phase out underwriting and financing existing oil and gas businesses by 2025. All direct investing in the oil and gas sector would end by 2040, the company said in a report.Suncorp said the move built on its commitment last year to end any backing of thermal coal projects.At the end of June, the company said fossil fuel extraction and generation made up less than 0.1% of its general insurance business. Among its insurance and shareholder investment assets, exposure was below 0.5%, and was less than 1.5% of all the investments it managed.“Suncorp will continue to underwrite, lend to and invest in companies whose business is clearly consistent with the transition to a net-zero emissions economy by 2050,” the report said. Current investments in low carbon industries stood at $236m at the end of June, the company said.Insurance companies globally are introducing internal guidelines restricting their exposure to fossil fuels. At least four insurers of Australia’s controversial Adani coal mine have backed away from the project. In 2019 Suncorp said it would not finance or insure new thermal coal mines and power plants and would not underwrite existing thermal coal projects after 2025.[Graham Readfearn]More: Insurance giant Suncorp to end coverage and finance for oil and gas industry Australia’s Suncorp to stop financing, insuring oil and gas industry by 2025last_img read more

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Colombia Trains Guatemalan Marines in Anti-Narcotics River Operations

first_imgBy Manuel Ordoñez/Diálogo August 15, 2016 Colombian Marine (COLMAR) troops spent two months training Guatemala’s Naval Infantry Brigade on intercepting narcotics shipments on rivers as part of the U.S. Colombia Action Plan (USCAP) sponsored by U.S. Southern Command (SOUTHCOM) and executed by U.S. Marine Corps Forces South (MARFORSOUTH) in this case. The training took place on the waters of the Dulce River in the northern department of Izabal, according to Lieutenant Colonel Karen Pérez, spokesperson for the Guatemalan Ministry of Defense. Between April 4th and June 2nd, seven COLMAR teaching assistants and one officer trained 14 Guatemalan Marines in daytime and nighttime environments in military swimming, small boat maneuvering, river combat, tactical shooting, first aid, survival in water, procedures for leading a river combat team, and riverine operations, Lt. Col. Pérez explained. “The purpose of the training is to give naval infantry units techniques and skills for the fight against drug trafficking in riverine operations,” Lt. Col. Pérez said. USCAP program The USCAP is a regional security cooperation program by which SOUTHCOM Service Components and National Guard Bureau facilitate Colombian Military-led “Countering Transnational Criminal Organizations Building Partner Capacity” mobile training, subject matter expert exchanges, and military academic instruction in the region. “Colombia is a key U.S. partner that is instrumental in SOUTHCOM’s mission to counter transnational organized crime. Colombia’s military is professional, tactically capable, and able to export their counter narcotics training amongst the U.S. partner nations in Latin America,” said U.S. Marine Corps Forces South Captain Hector Infante, South and Central American desk officer. In addition to sponsoring the event, SOUTHCOM, also provided MARFORSOUTH personnel who supervised the Colombian sailors during their stay. “The partnership between the Colombian Marines and MARFORSOUTH is an example of the close relationship between Colombia and the United States. Together, they enhance the capacity of Guatemala’s Marine Brigade through mobile training teams combined with U.S. Marine Corps Security Cooperation teams,” added Capt. Infante. “The goal of the mission is to export Colombian training so that others can use their experience in confiscating narcotics and in riverine operations. This is so that they can later transfer this knowledge to other countries in Central America,” said U.S. Marine Corps Captain Joseph Thiel, officer in charge of the MARFORSOUTH team in Guatemala. Capt. Thiel added that SOUTHCOM collaborates with regional-level training to allow regional partner nations to support each other in any training they may need. Lieutenant Manuel Alejandro Calderón Ramírez, member of the Colombian Marine Corps who was part of the team that trained their Guatemalan counterparts, said that the intention of the river operations course is for the Guatemalan Navy to be able to apply the training to all of the country’s navigable rivers. “For us to be able to deny the enemy or criminals the use of the nation’s rivers and to make Guatemala one of the countries free of drug trafficking.” Colonel Nelson Guillermo Tun Cortez, Commander of the Marine Corps Brigade in Guatemala, said that the training is extremely important for the young brigade, created just three years ago. “This training has been very important because it helps us fulfill our vision of being the most well-trained strategic brigade of the Guatemalan Army,” he said. Guatemalan Army fights against drug trafficking Jorge Chinchilla, spokesperson for Guatemala’s National Civil Police (PNC), said, “The Army supports us in two ways: through the Special Naval Force, since neither the PNC nor the Public Prosecutor’s Office has the ships to pursue drug traffickers in open sea, and they also collaborate with patrols through the Chortí and Tecún Umán task forces.” Chinchilla stated that the Army’s collaboration in seizures of drug shipments has been important, especially on the country’s coasts and rivers. The Army’s naval forces are collaborating with anti-narcotics forces in finding and seizing drug shipments in the high seas. According to Chinchilla, they have carried out operations and found drugs at a distance of up to approximately 50 nautical miles offshore. According to official data from the General Department of Anti-Narcotics Information and Analysis (SGAIA) of the National Civil Police, as of July 11th, the Guatemalan security forces have confiscated 5,777.5 kilograms of cocaine transported through Guatemalan territory. This quantity constitutes an increase in comparison with 2015, when only 6,000 kilograms of the substance was confiscated that entire year.last_img read more

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This is the biggest money worry in your state…

first_imgThe financial worries that keep Americans up at night differ depending on where they live (and sleep).More than 10,000 Americans were asked to choose their “biggest financial challenge” from seven options: Planning for retirement, saving for a home, saving up an emergency fund, sticking to a budget, building an investment portfolio, paying for higher education, and paying off credit cards. Residents of more than half of all states named retirement planning as the biggest challenge, while one-third of respondents said they struggle most with sticking to a budget, the survey found — but there was sharp contrast between both coasts, and the Midwest. It was conducted by personal finance site GoBankingRates.com.Among the findings: Only six places named paying for higher education their No. 1 challenge, including California, Hawaii and Washington, D.C. Also notable: Around 60% of those surveyed in Western states said they were most concerned with sticking to a budget, while two-thirds of Midwest states said retirement planning is their biggest challenge. Despite multiple reports that housing is becoming more unaffordable due to a double-edged sword of rising home prices and flat wages, saving for a home and building an investment portfolio were not among the biggest concerns for residents of any state. continue reading » 18SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

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Endwell Greens Golf Club temporarily closes restaurant after employees test positive for COVID-19

first_imgENDWELL (WBNG) — The Endwell Greens Golf Club and Event Center says their restaurant and bar will be closed for a couple of days after two employees tested positive for the coronavirus. The golf club says operations will remain open under new precautions to protect golfers. The pro-shop will be window service only, and the golf carts will be sanitized after every use. They say one of the employees has not worked since Friday, Aug. 7 and the other hasn’t worked since Monday, Aug. 10. The golf club says the restaurant will be closed Monday, Aug. 17 and Tuesday, Aug. 18, to sanitize the facility, and are hopeful they can reopen on Wednesday.center_img The golf club urges all golfers to practice social distancing. The golf club says they will continue to monitor their employee’s health and be diligent with operations to prevent the spread of the virus.last_img read more

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Your starter for £10

first_imgTo access this article REGISTER NOWWould you like print copies, app and digital replica access too? SUBSCRIBE for as little as £5 per week. Would you like to read more?Register for free to finish this article.Sign up now for the following benefits:Four FREE articles of your choice per monthBreaking news, comment and analysis from industry experts as it happensChoose from our portfolio of email newsletterslast_img

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China threatens retaliation for US curbs on ‘propaganda’ outlets

first_imgHe declined to say if the four organizations would be asked to reduce their US-based staff, which was required of the five that were earlier designated.The announcement was further evidence that a closed-door meeting last week in Hawaii between US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and senior Chinese official Yang Jiechi did little to ease bilateral tensions.The five state news outlets earlier designated as foreign missions were Xinhua news agency, China Global Television Network, China Radio International and the US distributors of the People’s Daily and English-language China Daily.After these outlets were ordered to slash their numbers of Chinese employees in the United States, Beijing hit back in March by expelling US citizens working for three major newspapers — The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and The Washington Post. China threatened Tuesday to retaliate against new US restrictions on Chinese state media, escalating tensions between the two superpowers as they crack down on each other’s news outlets.The US State Department said Monday it was reclassifying four organizations — China Central Television, China News Service, the People’s Daily and the Global Times — as foreign missions rather than media outlets in the United States, adding to five others designated in February.China has already expelled more than a dozen American journalists as part of the row. Further retaliation? Some media rights advocates have voiced misgivings about the approach of President Donald Trump’s administration, saying it gave China a pretext to kick out journalists who have fearlessly reported on the coronavirus pandemic and the mass incarceration of Uighurs and other Turkic Muslims.State Department officials say US media are free to report critically on their government while Chinese state-run outlets report to the government. In February, China separately expelled three journalists from The Wall Street Journal after the newspaper ran an opinion piece with a headline that called the country the “sick man of Asia” — a word choice Beijing called racist.Stilwell, the assistant secretary of state, played down fears that China would expel more US journalists, saying the US actions were “simply an excuse” for Beijing to crack down on media. “Trying to tie what we do to defend ourselves to what they choose to do — to kick out the best investigative reporters, especially the ones who speak Chinese — this is all their choice,” he said.  On Tuesday Beijing decried the latest US move as “bare-faced political suppression of Chinese media” that “further exposes the hypocrisy of the so-called freedom of speech and press which the US likes to flaunt”.”We strongly urge the US to reject this Cold War mindset and ideological bias… otherwise China will have no choice but to make an appropriate response,” said foreign ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian at a routine briefing.All nine Chinese state-run news organizations will be required to report details of their US-based staff and real estate transactions to the State Department. Their news reporting will not be restricted, officials said.”These four entities are not media outlets; they are propaganda outlets,” David Stilwell, the top US diplomat for East Asia, told reporters. Topics :last_img read more

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Gobernador Wolf: Solicitud de declaración de desastre mayor aprobada

first_imgGobernador Wolf: Solicitud de declaración de desastre mayor aprobada March 31, 2020 Español,  Press Release,  Public Health El Gobernador Tom Wolf anunció hoy que el Presidente aprobó parte de su solicitud de declaración de desastre mayor para brindar apoyo a la respuesta estatal, de los condados y local al brote de COVID-19 en Pennsylvania.“Estamos agradecidos por la financiación federal que brindará apoyo a todos los niveles gubernamentales a medida que trabajamos juntos para detener la propagación del virus y apoyar a quienes cuidan de los enfermos”, dijo el Gobernador Wolf. “Sin embargo, sigo reclamando firmemente la aprobación del resto de mi solicitud, que brindará un apoyo más directo a nuestros amigos y vecinos que sufren dificultades financieras que de otra manera podrían resultar insuperables”.Según la declaración de desastre mayor, los gobiernos estatales, de condados y municipales, al igual que las organizaciones privadas sin fines de lucro que reúnen los requisitos, pueden recibir un reembolso de hasta el 75% de los gastos admitidos vinculados con la respuesta al brote de COVID-19. Los gastos admitidos pueden incluir, entre otros, los costos asociados al pago de horas extras o a compras de materiales y equipos. La declaración también brinda asistencia federal directa, que proporciona materiales e insumos federales para apoyar los esfuerzos de respuesta a nivel estatal y local.En las próximas semanas, el personal de la Agencia para el Manejo de Emergencias de Pennsylvania (PEMA, en inglés) se comunicará con los posibles solicitantes para ver el proceso de solicitud y la documentación necesaria. Como el período de respuesta para el brote de COVID-19 continúa, el proceso llevará semanas. Todos los reembolsos se gestionan electrónicamente.El Gobernador Wolf señaló que su solicitud de otra contribución federal sigue bajo consideración. Su carta al Presidente incluyó los siguientes programas de Asistencia personal: Asistencia por Desempleo por Desastre, Asesoramiento para Personas en Crisis, Préstamos Comunitarios por Desastre y el Programa de Nutrición Suplementaria por Desastre; y Mitigación de Riesgos en todo el estado.Se desconoce cuándo tomará una determinación sobre el resto de su solicitud. El 6 de marzo de 2020, el Gobernador Wolf firmó una Proclamación de emergencia por desastre por el brote de COVID-19, que es un paso obligatorio para solicitar una declaración federal de desastre mayor.Ver esta página en inglés.center_img SHARE Email Facebook Twitterlast_img read more

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RBA reveals housing ‘crystal ball’

first_imgPopulation and dwelling stock growth – year ended..“Instead, in New South Wales, where the recent decline in housing prices has been the largest, the unemployment rate has continued to trend down. It is now at levels last seen in the early 1970s. The unemployment rate has also trended lower in Victoria.”“So, the origins of the current correction in prices do not lie in interest rates and unemployment. Rather, they largely lie in the inflexibility of the supply side of the housing market in response to large shifts in population growth.”And that, according to him, is where much of the blame goes, with supply taking “the better part of a decade” to react to population growth and nonresident demand.Domestic investors also added to the cycle. he said, especially in New South Wales.“At the peak of the boom, approvals to investors in New South Wales accounted for half of approvals nationwide, compared with an average of just 30 per cent over the five years to 2010.” Investor housing loan approvals in $billions (seasonally adjusted).More from newsParks and wildlife the new lust-haves post coronavirus14 hours agoNoosa’s best beachfront penthouse is about to hit the market14 hours agoBut “amplified” price increases designed to boost investor profits came at a price.“There is an internal dynamic to housing price cycles, and this one is no exception. By 2017, the ratio of the median home price to income had reached very high levels in Sydney and Melbourne.” “Finding the deposit to purchase a home had become beyond the reach of many people, especially first home buyers if they did not have others to help them.” But Dr Lowe refused to blame tighter lending standards for the shrinking buyer pool, saying “the main story … is one of reduced demand for credit, rather than reduced supply”.He agreed though that some lenders have gone too far the other way now — and if they couldn’t find the right mix it would have economic impact.“As lenders recalibrated their risk controls last year, the balance may have moved too far in some cases. This meant that credit conditions tightened more than was probably required.”“Now, as lenders continue to seek the right balance, we need to remember that it is important that banks are prepared to take credit risk. And it’s important that they have the capacity to manage that risk well. If they can’t do this, then the economy will suffer.”The bright side for Mr Lowe was that the housing market adjustment was “manageable for the overall economy”.“It is unlikely to derail our economic expansion,” he said. “It will also have some positive side-effects by making housing more affordable for many people.”And what of interest rates? Dr Lowe was coy, except to in a roundabout way say that the best course of action right now was inaction.“We have the flexibility to adjust monetary policy in either direction as required. There are plausible scenarios under which the next move in interest rates is up. There are also plausible scenarios under which it is down.” “At the moment, the probabilities appear reasonably evenly balanced. Given these various cross currents, the Board’s judgement remains that the most appropriate course is to maintain the cash rate at its current level.” FOLLOW SOPHIE FOSTER ON TWITTER Housing price to income ratios: Average dwelling prices to average annual household disposable income.“At the same time, the combination of high prices and weak growth in rents meant that rental yields were quite low. So, naturally, momentum shifted.” “Given the big run-up in prices and the large increase in supply, a correction at some point was not surprising, although the precise timing is nearly impossible to predict.”He agreed that low interest rates played a part in making credit available cheaper than ever to borrowers — and that tighter lending standards were now having an impact. Video Player is loading.Play VideoPlayNext playlist itemMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 0:58Loaded: 0%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -0:58 Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedCaptionscaptions settings, opens captions settings dialogcaptions off, selectedQuality Levels720p720pHD432p432p216p216p180p180pAutoA, selectedAudio Tracken (Main), selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.This is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.Close Modal DialogThis is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.PlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 0:00Loaded: 0%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -0:00 Playback Rate1xFullscreenHow much do I need to retire?00:58 Incomplete house the hottest in Australia Australia’s worst house for sale The Reserve Bank of Australia has crystal balled the housing market in a speech mid this week. Picture: AAP Image/Joel Carrett.Reserve Bank Governor Philip Lowe’s “housing market 101” crystal balled the housing market, even as he labelled Aussies the most “intense” property sector watchers in the world. In his Housing Market and the Economy speech, delivered in Sydney, Mr Lowe said “Australians watch housing markets intensely, perhaps more so than citizens of any other country”. He said the large run-up in prices and subsequent decline were caused by a combination of factors, but there was something weird this time around.This as the five years to late 2017 saw nationwide housing prices jump “almost 50 per cent” and since then falling “by 9 per cent” – that is, back to mid 2016 levels.“The current adjustment is unusual,” Dr Lowe said. “Unlike the other four episodes in which housing prices have declined in recent decades, this one was not preceded by rising mortgage rates. Nor has it been associated with a rise in the national unemployment rate.” MORE REAL ESTATE NEWS Fallout set to hit Tinder generation Governor of the Reserve Bank of Australia Dr Philip Lowe. Picture: AAP Image/Dean Lewins.last_img read more

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PSL: Akpeyi out of the season after suffering concussion

first_img Promoted Content2020 Tattoo Trends: Here’s What You’ll See This YearThe Funniest Prankster Grandma And Her Grandson7 Universities Where Getting An Education Costs A Hefty Penny11 Theories Why We Haven’t Met Any Aliens YetA Guy Turns Gray Walls And Simple Bricks Into Works Of Art5 Of The World’s Most Unique Theme Parks7 Of The Wealthiest Universities In The WorldGo Stargazing & Discover The Night Sky At These Cool Locations6 Interesting Ways To Make Money With A Drone5 Of The World’s Most Unique Theme ParksThe Very Last Bitcoin Will Be Mined Around 2140. Read More6 Incredibly Strange Facts About Hurricanes Loading… Read Also: Barcelona table strange condition to let Messi leave for free “Daniel Akpeyi suffered a concussion on Sunday against Wits. He is ruled out for the next two matches. The medical team will continue monitoring his recovery process. We wish him a speedy recovery,” the Soweto giants said on their official Twitter account. Kaizer Chiefs are still at the top of the league standings and will face-off with Chippa United and Baroka FC in their final two games. FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmail分享 center_img South Africa’s Kaizer Chiefs have issued an update on Super Eagles shot-stopper Daniel Akpeyi after he suffered a concussion over the weekend. The Soweto giants suffered a 1-0 loss to Bidvest Wits in the Absa Premiership on Sunday, wherein they lost one of their key players in Akpeyi, who was substituted at the stroke of half-time. After coming out to punch a cross, the Nigerian international collided with Mxolisi Macuphu and it instantly caused worry for the Amakhosi bench, who end up calling on Bruce Bvuma to take his place between the sticks. Chiefs have since issued an update on the 34-year-old, ruling him out of action for the rest of the season.last_img read more