Yet Another Dinosaur Extinction Theory: Bugs

first_imgA press release from Oregon State claims that insects may have finished off the dinosaurs.  Two main reasons were given for this hypothesis: (1) the extinction coincides with the rise of flowering plants and their pollinators, and (2) the impact theory has serious problems.“There are serious problems with the sudden impact theories of dinosaur extinction, not the least of which is that dinosaurs declined and disappeared over a period of hundreds of thousands, or even millions of years,” said George Poinar Jr., a courtesy professor of zoology at Oregon State University.  “That time frame is just not consistent with the effects of an asteroid impact.  But competition with insects, emerging new diseases and the spread of flowering plants over very long periods of time is perfectly compatible with everything we know about dinosaur extinction.”The theory actually proposes a brew of toxic effects, including geological catastrophes like impacts and volcanoes, mixed in with new diseases from biting insects.  George and Roberta Poinar have found evidence of “leishmania, malaria, intestinal parasites, arboviruses and other pathogens” in dinosaur coprolites (fossil dung) and in the guts of amber-entombed insects.  They suggest that waves of epidemics caused dinosaur extinction over a long period of time.    Rather than a single event, therefore, the Poinars propose that “The confluence of new insect-spread diseases, loss of traditional food sources, and competition for plants by insect pests could all have provided a lingering, debilitating condition that dinosaurs were ultimately unable to overcome.”    Science Daily posted the hypothesis with a picture of a tick encased in amber.One would think that the highly-versatile and adaptable dinosaurs would have enjoyed some nice salad after millions of years of pine cones and ferns.  Maybe they couldn’t get used to the taste of broccoli.  Now that 25 years of animations of horrific space bombardments have to go out the window, it’s open season for you to propose your own theory about dinosaur extinction.  Add to the historic list: diarrhea, cosmic rays, poached eggs, tobacco (Gary Larson), asteroids, and not listening to Mom (see ARN for more ideas).    All these hypotheses fail to explain why so many contemporary creatures avoided the extinction – including some good-size mammals and birds (the reputed dinosaurs of today).  Remember that dinosaurs came in a wide variety of sizes.  They roamed the entire planet – including Antarctica (12/12/2007).  Whatever killed them off must have been both global and very selective.    Since we now know that soft tissue, proteins and maybe even blood has been preserved in some dinosaurs, indicating that they lived much more recently than assumed by evolutionists, put the pieces together.  Maybe humans killed off the remaining ones after the Flood.  Professor Noah from the University of Ark claims that this hypothesis is “perfectly compatible with everything we know about dinosaur extinction.”(Visited 11 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

“Fly the Flag for Football”

first_imgUnder the banner, “Fly the Flag for Football!”, thousands of South African flags, together with information leaflets, will be distributed to travellers and holiday makers over the Easter Weekend, from Thursday 9th March to Monday 13th March. The Easter Weekend was chosen to launch the campaign as it is traditionally one of the busiest holiday periods in South Africa, with thousands of South Africans travelling across the country.The 2010 National Communication Partnership (NCP) was formed to co-ordinate and drive relevant marketing and communications messages for the FIFA Confederations Cup 2009 and 2010 FIFA World Cup. The role of the NCP is to inform the public about the events, to market South Africa and to inspire a sense of pride and unity in the South African public. Members include custodians of Brand South Africa, the International Marketing Council (IMC), South African Tourism, the FIFA Local Organising Committee, the Department of Arts and Culture, South African Airways, Proudly South African, and several other private sector and civil society groups.The NCP hopes to distribute over 47 million South African flags through various campaigns leading up to the start of the 2010 FIFA World CupTM in June 2010.“Our national flag is a powerful symbol of unity and pride, and we would like to play our part by encouraging South Africans to proudly fly the flag as the eyes of the world are upon us,” says Margaret Dingalo, Stakeholder Relations Manager for the IMC. ‘The FIFA Confederations Cup 2009 is starting in less than 100 days and excitement is building. We need to help drive enthusiasm and patriotism, garnering support amongst South Africans for Bafana Bafana and the event as a whole.”South African football legend Mark Fish is the official spokesperson and will garner support and spread the message to the public for the duration of the campaign. He says, “the South Africa national flag is a proud symbol of unity. The eyes of the world will soon be upon us as we fly our flag and fill the land with the vibrancy, spirit and colour of South Africa. These events are more about football – it’s the opportunity of a lifetime, for South Africa and Africa as a whole. Let us raise our flags in unity, joining together to make the Fifa Confederations Cup 2009 and 2010 Fifa World Cup joyful, unforgettable events. Fly your flag and show the world the warmth and spirit of South Africa.”Zakumi, the 2010 FIFA World Cup mascot, is also participating and will be spotted throughout the country interacting with the public and encouraging support.Colourful face-painted figures wearing South African flag t-shirts and Makarapas, the traditional football fan hat that is unique to South Africa, will be handing out free flags at various tollgates, garages and airports across the country. State of the art digital shoot-outs will also feature at various locations where members of the public will have a chance to win prizes after taking shots at a virtual goal.The “Fly the Flag for Football” campaign will include an interactive mobile website where members of the public can find further information and enter a competition to win sets of tickets to various FIFA Confederation Cup 2009 matches.Played in the host country a year before the FIFA World Cup, the Confederations Cup is traditionally seen as an appetizer for what has become the world’s biggest football event. The teams taking part comprise of the current World Cup champion, and the winners of each of the six FIFA Confederation championships. This year the teams are South American winners Brazil, Africa winners Egypt, Concacaf winners USA, Asian winners Iraq, European winners Spain, Oceania winners New Zealand, the World Cup 2006 winners Italy, and as host of 2010, South Africa.Confederations Cup matches will be played in Johannesburg, Pretoria, Bloemfontein and Rustenburg from 14 to 28 June 2009. A critical success factor will be the attendance of South Africans. Tickets cost just R70 for the Confederations Cup matches.“We hope to play a role in inspiring South Africans to fly the flag high and to actively contribute to the success of the Confederations Cup through this campaign,” says Dingalo. “It is important to unify as a nation in support of these events as we make world history once again.”Issued on behalf of the 2010 National Communications Partnership by Kaelo PR Notes to the editor:Please note Mark Fish is the official spokesperson of the campaign and as such is available for comment, interviews and photos.Please find below the summery schedule of activations happening for the duration of the “Fly the flag for football” campaign as detailed above taking place over the Easter weekend. SUMMARY SCHEDULE:Flag ActivationsTollgate handouts and in some cases digital shoot-outs at nearby garages will take place during the Easter Week-end (9th to 13th April) in the following places: Carousel PlazaMiddelberg PlazaMooi PlazaNkomzai PlazaTongaat PlazaBrits PlazaVaal PlazaAirport flag hand-outs:O R Tambo International AirportDurban International AirportPort Elizabeth AirportBloemfontein AirportCape Town International AirportDigital Shoot-out activations:9 April:Carousel Plaza garage, Middelberg Plaza garage10 April:OR Tambo International11 April:OR Tambo International, Tongaat Plaza garage12 April:Tongaat Plaza garage13 April:Vaal Plaza garage, Durban International AirportDigital shoot-out activations will also be active at the Department of Sports and Recreation stand at the Rand Easter Show for the entire period.For more information, please contact:Jane LewisKaelo PR Brand and Cause CommunicationsTel: +27 (0) 11 536 4900Cell: + 27 (0) 76 538 [email protected] more Details Download pdf:Nkwenkwe Nkomo speech [2.16mb]Media launch programme [1.20mb]Campaign brief [2.26mb]Press release [1.28mb]Media Messages [1.25mb]Pamphlet Final [763kb]Related ArticlesNews: Fly the flag for footballLinks: Fly the flag for footballlast_img read more

On the Closure of Vermont Yankee

first_imgNatural gas has gotten cheapVY is closing largely because of the low cost of natural gas, which has become the preferred energy source for utility companies. As I’ve written in a previous column, the same fate is befalling some of the nation’s dirtiest coal-fired power plants — and that’s a good thing.In the short term, the low cost of natural gas may hurt renewables, because utility companies are choosing to build new natural gas plants rather than invest in distributed renewables. But once the price of natural gas goes back up — as I believe it will once demand catches up with supply within the next decade — utilities will find that investing in solar, wind, and other renewable energy systems is less expensive than building new coal or nuclear plants. At least that’s my hope. What to do with the old VY plantMeanwhile, the discussion about decommissioning the Vermont Yankee power plant in Vernon is ramping up. At one end of the spectrum is the prospect of SAFSTOR (essentially putting the plant into a long-term holding pattern — up to sixty years — before dismantling it and restoring the site).I’d much rather see decommissioning begin as soon as possible, so that we can look into how that site could be reused. Unlike some, I’m not optimistic about replacing Vermont Yankee with some sort of renewable power plant, such as a wood-chip-fired power plant that would take advantage of the power distribution lines extending to the plant. Such power plants, I believe, should only be built in locations where the waste heat can be captured and productively used.Such co-generation or combined heat and power (CHP) systems, in which the waste heat from thermoelectric power plants is recovered, are where we as a nation need to be going with centralized power generation. It is ludicrous that we throw away two-thirds of the primary energy as thermal pollution with conventional power generation. But it would be hard to build a CHP plant in Vernon, much as I’d like to see that happen, because of the distance hot water would have to be piped to buildings and industrial facilities where it could be used.This doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t decommission and clean up the VY site as soon as possible, however. That should be our priority, which will also provide a several-year spurt of economic activity in the region. That could help us in the longer-term transition to sustainable economic health built on the energy efficiency and green building sector. Seeking that silver liningBut the closure also offers opportunities. It could be a rallying point for a new, greener focus on regional economic development. Indeed, for the past several months I’ve been part of an initiative of BDCC and Southeastern Vermont Economic Development Strategies (SeVEDS) to identify and strengthen an emerging “green products and services industry cluster” for southeastern Vermont.We held a meeting in June with about a dozen business owners and leaders in the green building and energy efficiency sectors to discuss how to derive long-term, sustainable, economic growth in this area — including both manufacturing and service-sector jobs — and there will be a follow-up meeting next week.The 2014 closure of the plant could provide key momentum toward sustainable economic development in the region. It could also stimulate renewed discussion about the broader issues of power generation and centralized vs. distributed power production. And there are many cascading benefits of the plant to the region’s economy. According to the Brattleboro Development Credit Corporation (BDCC), in addition to VY’s employees an estimated 400 positions in the region are supported indirectly by the plant: local motels, restaurant workers, retail sales positions, etc. And Entergy Vermont Yankee and its employees give a lot to local nonprofit organizations, including United Way of Windham County — where VY is the largest contributor.Our economy will suffer from the plant’s closure; there’s no getting around that. Alex is founder of BuildingGreen, Inc. and executive editor of Environmental Building News. In 2012 he founded the Resilient Design Institute. To keep up with Alex’s latest articles and musings, you can sign up for his Twitter feed.center_img Nuclear power plant workers have high salariesOur economy in Windham County, and especially the Brattleboro area, benefits significantly from Vermont Yankee (VY). The plant directly employs over 600 people in the tri-state area, with an annual payroll of $66 million and an average wage of slightly over $100,000. This represents 5% of Windham County’s total payroll. RELATED ARTICLES Thoughts on Nuclear PowerThoughts on Nuclear Power – Part 2Fukushima and Vermont YankeeFukushima’s No-Entry ZoneNuclear Meltdown in Japan and Our Energy FutureBuilding Resilience for a ‘Close Encounter’ with Disaster The big energy news in my part of the world this past week has been the pending closure of Vermont’s only nuclear power plant, Vermont Yankee, in Vernon, about six miles south of Brattleboro. The closure is scheduled for the fourth quarter of 2014, at the end of the current fuel cycle.For a lot of my friends, this was news that they had been hoping for for many years and a cause for celebration. I share with these individuals concerns about nuclear power, especially a fear that nuclear power plants could be targets for terrorist actions. So I feel some relief that after another year or so there won’t be new radioactive material generated ten miles from my house (though I’m well aware that the high-level radioactive waste that’s stored on-site could remain there for decades).But for me it’s a more complicated issue.last_img read more

Wawrinka in Geneva final as Nishikori slumps

first_imgStanislas “Stan” Wawrinka, of Switzerland, returns a ball to Andrey Kuznetsov of Russia, during their semifinal match at the Geneva Open tennis tournament in Geneva, Switzerland, Friday, May 26, 2017. (Salvatore Di Nolfi/Keystone via AP)Top seed and defending champion Stan Wawrinka reached the Geneva claycourt final on Friday where he’ll face German outsider Mischa Zverev who stunned Japan’s Kei Nishikori 6-4, 3-6, 6-3.Wawrinka, 32, eased into the final by seeing off Russian world number 85 Andrey Kuznetsov 6-3, 7-6 (7/4).ADVERTISEMENT Cayetano dares Lacson, Drilon to take lie-detector test: Wala akong kinita sa SEA Games Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next MOST READ Nishikori, fighting for fitness and form after a wrist injury forced him out of the Rome Masters last week, looked jaded against Zverev having needed to save three match points in the previous round against Kevin Anderson.Qualifier Zverev, the older brother of Alexander Zverev who stunned Novak Djokovic in the Rome Masters final, who will attempt to capture his maiden tour title in what will be his first final appearance in seven years.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingWawrinka is seeking his first title of the year in what would be a major boost ahead of the French Open which starts on Sunday. Pagasa: Storm intensifies as it nears PAR Injury-plagued Del Potro confirms for French Open Palace: Duterte to hear out security execs on alleged China control of NGCP Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’ Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students PLAY LIST 01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. BREAKING: Cop killed, 11 hurt in Misamis Oriental grenade blast BREAKING: Cop killed, 11 hurt in Misamis Oriental grenade blast LATEST STORIES BSP survey: PH banks see bright horizon amid dark global recession clouds View comments Every 18 seconds someone is diagnosed with HIVlast_img read more

PH bows out of 3×3 U-18 quarters

first_imgEncho Serrano tries to score past the stingy Belgian defense. Photo by Fiba.comThe Philippines staged a gallant stand but fell to Belgium, 18-14, Sunday in the quarterfinals of the 2017 Fiba 3×3 Under-18 World Cup in Chengdu, China.The young Nationals could not sustain their hot start as they lost hold of a 7-4 lead and allowed the Belgians to stage a 6-1 run and grab the 10-8 advantage.ADVERTISEMENT View comments Though Encho Serrano and AJ Edu brought the Philippines back and tied the game at 12, Vincent Peeters anchored Belgium’s strong finishing kick to earn a spot in the semifinals and face Slovenia.The Philippines could still hold its head high as the boys towed the country to its best ever finish in the tournament since its foundation in 2012.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSWin or don’t eat: the Philippines’ poverty-driven, world-beating pool starsSerrano topped the Philippines with six points, while Edu added five markers. Juan Gomez de Liano had three in the game. /atmThe Scores: What ‘missteps’? China furious as Trump signs bills in support of Hong Kong Cayetano to unmask people behind ‘smear campaign’ vs him, SEA Games Pagasa: Kammuri now a typhoon, may enter PAR by weekend MOST READ Another vape smoker nabbed in Lucena Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ BELGIUM 18 – Peeters 6, Nouhi 5, Fogang 5, Coppens 2.PHILIPPINES 14 – Serrano 6, Edu 5, Gomez de Liano 3, Amsali 0.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’ LOOK: Jane De Leon meets fellow ‘Darna’ Marian Rivera Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. From former school teacher to world champion, Horn fulfills dream LATEST STORIES Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Gameslast_img read more

HMMs CEO Seeks to Strengthen Ties with 2M Alliance

first_imgzoomSource: Flickr – under the CC BY 2.0 license; Image by: Kees Torn The new CEO of South Korean shipping company Hyundai Merchant Marine (HMM) revealed plans to “consolidate the relationship” with 2M carriers, Maersk Line and Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC). Jae-hoon Bae, who was appointed as HMM’s President and CEO last month, will be visiting Denmark and Switzerland, the countries where the 2M partners are headquartered, this week.The purpose of the CEO’s visit is reportedly the extension of a strategic deal with 2M. Bae wants South Korean shipping company to become a full 2M member next year, the Wall Street Journal cited a person with knowledge of HMM’s efforts as saying.Back in 2017, HMM signed the agreement with Maersk and MSC, launching the parties’ strategic cooperation on East-West trades. The three-year strategic cooperation is set to expire in April 2020 but has an extension option.The deal includes a series of slot exchanges and slot purchases on the abovementioned route, as well as 2M taking over a number of charters and operations of vessels currently chartered to HMM.Last year, industry analysts expressed their concerns that HMM would part its ways with 2M once the deal expires. The strategic cooperation was described as disadvantageous to HMM as the South Korean company is not a full member of the alliance.What is more, HMM is not the only 2M Alliance strategic partner. In July last year, Maersk and MSC inked a strategic agreement with shipping company ZIM, deciding to swap slots on five loops on the Asia-US East Coast trade. The carriers expanded their cooperation in January 2019 as they agreed to share slots on select 2M services also on the Asia-US West Coast and Asia-Mediterranean trade lanes.In December 2018, HMM was still not sure what course its relationship with 2M would take. The company, however, told World Maritime News that it maintained good ties with the alliance partners.During his European tour this week, HMM’s CEO will be also visiting the European headquarter of HMM, located in London. Furthermore, Bae will meet Kitack Lim, the Secretary-General of the International Maritime Organization (IMO), to share opinions and views on the IMO 2020 environmental regulation and upcoming regulatory measure on CO2 emissions.last_img read more

Commentary A gift wrapped pass to the NFL for Terrelle Pryor

Ohio State has gift wrapped Terrelle Pryor’s going-away present in the form of a punishment. In the last couple of days Pryor’s journey to the NFL has hit a couple of speed bumps, with his eligibility to a supplemental draft coming into question. The letter of the rule states that a player may only enter a supplemental draft if their situation changes and they are not able to participate in the next season. Technically, between the deadline to declare for the draft in January and when Pryor left the university on June 8, his situation had not changed. Technically. When the draft deadline came, Pryor was suspended for the first five games of the 2011 season. At that time the “tat-5” scandal seemed to be under control. Everything was (relatively) normal. The Buckeyes had won the Sugar Bowl The Sugar Bowl was sucked into the black hole of the sporting world. And compliance problems with head coach Jim Tressel were non-existent. Pryor had a contract with the coach to remain on the Buckeye squad for the 2011 season in exchange to play in the Sugar Bowl for nothing. While inevitably Pryor still had his doubts about the season, he still had Tressel to fall back on. One thing that is clearly evident from the transcript of Tressel’s interview from the NCAA, it’s that Pryor and Tressel were very close. Pryor depended on the coach for more than just football related issues. When all hell broke loose on March 8, Tressel received a two-game suspension from the university. A suspension that a short time later was increased to a five-game suspension. After more and more of the scandal developed, it became clear that the season was not going to be what everyone had thought it was going to be. Then on May 30, Tressel resigned (read: retired) from the university. I think it’s safe to say Pryor’s situation had changed. Seemingly following Tressel step for step, Pryor was gone a week later to pursue an NFL career. He had planned to enter a supplemental draft. The rules for a supplemental draft changed after Cleveland Browns quarterback Bernie Kosar used the supplemental draft to avoid being drafted by the Minnesota Vikings. He was drafted by Cleveland in the supplemental, and since then, the rules for supplemental draft eligibility have tightened. The rule lists three reasons to let someone enter a supplemental draft: flunking out of school, graduating and deciding to leave and being kicked off the team. As of earlier today, Pryor did not meet any of these requirements, technically. Cleverly disguised as a punishment, the university did the best thing for Pryor to help him pursue his NFL dream. They sent him a letter on Tuesday banning him from all athletic facilities for five years, and declared him ineligible from intercollegiate play. The letter states that this decision was made due to his decision not to talk to NCAA investigators. “The University must declare you ineligible for intercollegiate competition,” the letter continued. “Due to your failure to cooperate, the University must also disassociate you from its athletic program for a period of five (5) years.” Sure, he won’t be able to come back to Columbus to workout at OSU’s gym in the off-season. But let’s be honest, why would Pryor ever come back to Columbus? Whether they will admit it or not, the university might as well have put a bow on that letter to Pryor, as that should be the last step for Pryor to get into the NFL. Thanks to OSU, expect Pryor to be eligible for a supplemental draft (whenever that may be). read more