Denver ice hockey team the Colorado Avalanche have announced a Grateful Dead Night on October 19 for their game against the St. Louis Blues. The event will include a performance from Shakedown Street ahead of the game in Coors Meadow, located outside of the Grand Atrium doors at the Pepsi Center. Tickets to the event include access to Shakedown Street’s live performance, in addition to an exclusive Colorado Avalanche/Grateful Dead replica jersey to the first 500 ticket buyers. Learn more here.[H/T Jambands]
On a day when Harvard celebrated the accomplishments of the Human Genome Project, the Radcliffe Institute hosted a scientist whose work focuses not just on DNA, but on the mechanisms that control its expression.In this latest talk (Feb. 22) in the institute’s Dean’s Lecture Series, C. David Allis, the Joy and Jack Fishman Professor at The Rockefeller University, explained that there are important factors in development that go beyond the DNA “blueprint.” For example, why is it that only one in a pair of genetically equal identical twins can develop autism?The lecture, titled “Beyond the Double Helix: Varying the ‘Histone Code,’” focused on Allis’ contributions to the field of epigenetics (literally “above” or “in addition to” genetics). His work centers on histones — proteins known for their function in packaging and ordering DNA, thereby making up the structural component of chromatin. However, histones also play a large role in gene regulation, acting as an on/off switch for gene expression, and this feature, Allis explains, allows for a much more flexible method for scientists to interact with DNA.In discussing the importance of a specific histone, H3, Allis notes that this particular protein projects from the nucleosome molecule like a small tail. Other proteins read the tail, he explained, in order to carry out various tasks such as gene expression or DNA repair. The tail can modify certain positions along its amino acid chain, rendering it readable or unreadable by its associated transcriptional regulators. Apart from just reading the tails, these effector proteins can also act as writers or erasers to the H3 codes.Major discoveries in 1996 of the histone’s on/off abilities prompted an explosion in the field of epigenetics. Since then, its potential in disease treatment has been extensively explored. For example, only 10 years after the original breakthrough, the first epigenetic drug, used to treat T-cell lymphoma, was already being given to patients.As more is learned about how specific genes are involved in certain diseases, Allis’ hope is that epigenetic therapies will be able to correct or reset malfunctions in genetic expression.
Matthew Desmond, the John L. Loeb Associate Professor of the Social Sciences, and Beth Stevens, an assistant professor of neurology at Harvard Medical School (HMS) and neuroscientist at Boston Children’s Hospital, were named MacArthur Fellows today.Tackling what he called “some of the most morally urgent questions of the day” is Desmond’s goal. He said he was literally floored when he got the call that he had won the award. “I was at my desk in William James, and I sat on the floor,” he recalled, overwhelmed by feelings of both shock and gratitude.Stevens said today that she was similarly in awe. “I feel humbled by the recognition, but inspired by the work ahead,” she related. “Hopefully, the attention from the MacArthur award will build momentum in understanding the essential role of microglia in the developing brain.”Matthew Desmond, 2015 MacArthur Fellow <a href=”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wajNrp43q8M” rel=”nofollow” target=”_blank”> <img src=”https://img.youtube.com/vi/wajNrp43q8M/0.jpg” alt=”0″ title=”How To Choose The Correct Channel Type For Your Video Content ” /> </a> Matthew Desmond is an urban sociologist revealing the impact of eviction on poor families and the role of housing policy in sustaining poverty and racial inequality in large American cities. Courtesy of the MacArthur FoundationAs MacArthur Fellows, Desmond and Stevens join two dozen others from a variety of fields who also won awards today. The fellowships are given annually in recognition of significant originality and dedication, and come with no-strings-attached grants of $625,000. Recipients are nominated anonymously and don’t know they are being considered until they are notified that they have won.Other winners with ties to the University included Heidi Williams, an economist at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) who studies health care markets and who earned her doctorate at Harvard in 2010, and Peidong Yang, an inorganic chemist at the University of California at Berkeley who specializes in nanowires and who earned his doctorate at Harvard in 1997.Desmond said that the so-called “genius grant” couldn’t have come at a better time. His teaching and research focus on urban sociology, poverty, race and ethnicity, organizations and work, social theory, and ethnography. He just finished his fourth book, “Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City,” which will be published in March, and is beginning two projects. One will continue his work on housing, looking at eviction on a global scale, and the other will examine the child welfare system.His projects, he explained, start with questions. For the first, Desmond, who came to Harvard in 2010, will ask: “What’s it like to be priced out of the city? What is it like to be a poor person in America and give 60, 70, 80 percent of your income for housing? What’s it like in Delhi? In Lagos, a city of 17 million?”A California native who was raised in Arizona, Desmond said his second project will be more domestic in focus, looking at child welfare systems in the United States.“The big question is: How does contact with child protective services change low-income families?” he said. “On any day, there are about 400,000 children in foster care. Many will be reunited with their birth parents, so how does coming into contact with this very intense system change how parents operate, how they parent? How did [these children] get there in the first place?”He hopes to start the projects at the same time and foresees both taking “years of work” that will probably culminate in new books. “I can’t tell you the particulars of how it’s going to work out,” he said. “I can tell you I feel an amazing responsibility.”The unrestricted nature of the MacArthur award, said Desmond, brings with it the freedom and the responsibility “for doing work that might be more risky or innovative. That’s one thing the grant allows that’s unique.” Desmond’s field, he said, is up to the challenge. “Social science has a big role to play in these huge questions of poverty and social equality. My work is to push these conversations forward.”In announcing the award, the MacArthur Foundation said that Desmond “is shedding light on how entrenched poverty and racial inequality are built and sustained by housing policies in large American cities.”Beth Stevens, 2015 MacArthur Fellow Beth Stevens is a neuroscientist revealing the heretofore unknown role of microglial cells in neuron communication and prompting a fundamental shift in thinking about brain development in both healthy and unhealthy states. Courtesy of the MacArthur Foundation For Stevens, her research deals with a critical immune cell found in the brain, called a microglial cell. Until recently, that cell was thought only to protect the brain by reducing inflammation and removing foreign bodies. But Stevens showed that the microglial cells are also responsible for an important step in brain development: the removal of excess connections as young people grow and develop.Babies, Stevens said, are born with lots of extra synapses in their brains that get trimmed and pruned as they grow, learn, and experience the world. This process ensures that the brain’s wiring is as efficient as possible and, if something goes wrong in the process, may lie at the root of some adult neurological diseases, such as Alzheimer’s or Huntington’s disease.“Another way of thinking about it is the ‘use it or lose it’ idea,” Stevens said. “A baby’s brain has all these extra synapses because it’s not clear yet how the environment is going to impact that child, that individual. Based on environment and experience, then, the connections that are meaningful get strengthened and maintained, and the rest get removed.”In addition to working to understand the normal developmental process, Stevens in recent years has turned her attention to what happens if the process goes wrong. She sees two possibilities, both of which her lab is beginning to explore.In the first, the normal developmental process goes awry, resulting in aberrant brain wiring, such as is evident in disorders such as autism and schizophrenia. In the second, researchers are exploring whether the process, normally shut off in adults, might be turned on again, resulting in the loss of synapses and brain function, as seen in diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Huntington’s.“It has a lot of therapeutic potential — if it’s true — because a lot of synaptic loss happens in humans potentially years before you get memory loss or pathology,” Stevens said. “If we can figure out a way to protect the synapses, it might slow the progression of the disease.”Stevens said she became interested in neuroscience while a graduate student at the University of Maryland. She began working in the lab as the understanding of glial cells was evolving from a belief that they mainly provided structure for the brain’s neurons to where their functional roles were becoming apparent. She furthered her exploration of microglial cell function at Children’s Hospital, where she has a lab of about 15 staff, fellows, and students whose enthusiasm and talent she credited for the much of the lab’s success.“My lab is awesome,” Stevens said. “They’re an incredible group of people who make it all happen and make it all fun.”Stevens was in her office, working on a grant application, ironically, when she learned that she had won the MacArthur. Even though the call came two weeks ago, it still doesn’t seem real to her, she said, at least in part because she was sworn to secrecy and had to go about her business before it was announced today.“You can’t talk about it, so it doesn’t seem real,” Stevens said. “It is pretty amazing. It’s a huge honor that I’m still processing.”Stevens received her bachelor’s degree from Northeastern University in 1993 and her doctorate at Maryland in 2003. After spending time as a postdoctoral fellow at Stanford, she came to HMS and Children’s Hospital. She is also an institute member of the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard.“Stevens is redefining our understanding of how the wiring in the brain occurs and changes in early life, and shedding new light on how the nervous and immune systems interact in the brain, both in health and in disease,” the MacArthur Foundation wrote in its award announcement.Stevens said she is still pondering about how best to use the award money, but said it will almost certainly be used to give her flexibility, and allow her to spend more time in the lab, and with her family.Reflecting on how her high school biology teacher helped her onto the path to her rewarding career, she said she wants to mentor more young scientists.“It’s going to open up some flexibility and options: more time in the lab and less time doing what I don’t want to do,” Stevens said. <a href=”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6DOYTpXkLOY” rel=”nofollow” target=”_blank”> <img src=”https://img.youtube.com/vi/6DOYTpXkLOY/0.jpg” alt=”0″ title=”How To Choose The Correct Channel Type For Your Video Content ” /> </a>
Sign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York By Jeff Larson and Julia Angwin, ProPublicaAs politicians and counter-terrorism officials search for lessons from the recent attacks in Paris and San Bernardino, California, senior officials have called for limits on technology that sends encrypted messages.It’s a debate that has repeatedly recurred for more than a decade.In the 1990s, the Clinton Administration directed technology companies to store copies of their encryption keys with the government. That would have given the government a “backdoor” to allow law enforcement and intelligence agencies easy access to encrypted communications. That idea was dropped after sharp criticism from technologists and civil liberties advocates.More recently, intelligence officials in Europe and the United States have asserted that encryption hampers their ability to detect plots and trace perpetrators. But many have questioned whether it would be practical or wise to allow governments widespread power to read encrypted messages.To help readers appreciate the arguments on both sides, we’ve pulled together some FAQs on a subject that is sure to be hotly debated in the years to come.Q: Are terrorists really using encrypted messages to plot attacks?A: There’s mounting evidence that terrorist groups are using encryption, but so does nearly everyone living in modern society. Encryption protects your bank information, prevents your password from being stolen when you log into a website, and allows all e-commerce transactions to take place securely.In addition, apps that send encrypted text messaging apps through Wi-Fi, such as WhatsApp, Signal and Telegram, have become increasingly commonplace in places where text messaging is expensive.One piece of evidence that terror networks are using encrypted messages surfaced in a recent issue of ISIS’s Dabiq magazine,where the group listed a contact number in Telegram. Soon after,Telegram shut down many ISIS-connected groups using its service. And earlier this year, a West Point researcher found copies of an encryption manual designed for journalists and activists on an Internet forum linked to ISIS.Intelligence officials have said that the planner of the Paris terrorist attacks used encryption technology, but police also found that one of the Paris terrorists was using an unencrypted cellphone.Q: Are Google, Apple, Facebook and Twitter thwarting law enforcement through their use of encryption?A: In the past few years, Silicon Valley tech companies have added layers of encryption to their cellphones and websites in an effort to assure users that their data is safe from both hackers and spies. That encryption has also made it harder for law enforcement officials to read what is transmitted by those devices.Last year, Apple made encryption the default setting for iPhones, meaning that all data stored on the device was scrambled. In an open letter announcing the change, Apple CEO Tim Cook wrote, “At Apple, we believe a great customer experience shouldn’t come at the expense of your privacy.”In congressional testimony this month, FBI Director James Comey said that encryption is now part of “terrorist tradecraft.” He cited an instance in Garland, Texas, in which two terror suspects were arrested before they could execute an attack. “That morning, before one of those terrorists left to try and commit mass murder, he exchanged 109 messages with an overseas terrorist. We have no idea what he said because those messages were encrypted,” Comey said.Q: But can’t the National Security Agency just crack any code it wants?A: It’s not clear how much encryption the NSA can break. In 2013, ProPublica and the New York Times reported on a top secret NSA program called Bullrun that was described in internal documents as being able to decrypt “vast amounts of encrypted Internet data.” The program started in 2011 and was the result of “an aggressive, multipronged effort to break widely used Internet encryption technologies.”Details of the project are not known. But the documents showed that in 2013, the agency planned to spend $250 million dollars to, in part, “insert vulnerabilities into commercial encryption systems.”Q: I heard that there is a “golden key” that unlocks all encryption. Is there such a thing?A: Not yet and it’s not clear it will ever exist. The U.S. government has been trying to figure out how to access encrypted data for decades. However, wiretapping a phone call is far easier than creating a backdoor into encryption technology.Last year, the Washington Post editorial board called for Apple and Google “with all their wizardry,” to “invent a kind of secure golden key” that would allow law enforcement officials to read any encrypted message sent by a suspect.It would be a tremendous challenge to convince the world’s encryption makers, many of whom live outside the United States, to give American authorities access to such a tool. And it would be an even bigger challenge to keep the master key secret — given that it would immediately become the No. 1 target of every hacker and nation in the world.To address that issue, a White House working group proposed a split key — where one half of the master key would be kept by the government and the other would be held by the encryption company. But the report noted that this approach would be “complex to implement and maintain.”Q: Are there less complicated ways to give law enforcement and intelligence officials the access they say they need?A: The White House working group offered three additional ideas for “backdoors” into encryption. All required manufacturing or software changes by U.S. providers and all involved significant political or technical problems.One idea raised by the panel called for manufacturers to create a special port on all devices that could only be accessed by law enforcement. Requiring a port would represent a “significant cost to U.S. providers,” but could be avoided by installing software that creates “a secondary layer of encryption,” the panel said.Another option would be for telecom providers to slip software that defeats encryption into routine upgrades sent to customers. Such an approach would “call into question the trustworthiness” of American companies’ software updates, and could be easily repelled by technically adept users.Finally, the working group suggestedthat telecom providers might be ordered to hack into their customers’ devices so that their backup routines would send unencrypted copies of all data to the government.Q: Will any of these backdoor schemes work?A: They all have flaws. A big one: Users could easily bypass all of the backdoor options by creating their own layers of encryption.It’s not clear that compelling American companies to allow backdoors would accomplish much. A significant amount of the encryption software used around the world comes from widely available “open source” products. “There may be no central authority” for the government to negotiate with, the White House said in its report.And even when there is a company to negotiate with, the government has not had luck getting access to encryption keys. Two years ago, for example, the FBI tried and failed to get access to encryption keys from Snowden’s email provider, Lavabit.Ladar Levison, Lavabit’s owner, “provided the FBI with an 11-page printout containing largely illegible characters in 4-point type” of the keys and then shut down the entire email service.Most importantly, the United States isn’t the only country in the world with legal power over technology companies. For example, many cellphones used in the United States are manufactured in China, which could also demand backdoor access for its intelligence and law enforcement authorities. The White House report warns that “any U.S. proposed solution will be adopted by other countries.”Q: So what is the government proposing?A: The short answer is that the government has quietly dropped its requests for a backdoor.Last year, in a speech at the Brookings Institution, FBI Director Comey called for a “regulatory or legislative fix” to the problem of law enforcement access to encrypted communications, which was widely interpreted as calling for legislation to require encryption backdoors.But after his proposal prompted a backlash from technologists, Comey has softened his tone. In July, he told a Senate panel that “there has not yet been a decision whether to seek legislation” about requiring companies to provide access to encrypted data.And in Wednesday’s testimony, he told a Senate panel that “the administration has decided not to seek a legislative remedy at this time.” California Sen. Dianne Feinstein suggested that she is going to seek legislation. “If there is conspiracy going on over the Internet, that encryption ought to be able to be pierced,” she said at the hearing.On Thursday, privacy advocates visited the White House to discuss a petition they submitted in support of strong encryption. Kevin Bankston, director of the Open Technology Institute, who attended the meeting, said that administration officials said they “would like to move beyond this debate” and start discussing “how to adapt to strong encryption rather than fighting it.”ProPublica is a Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative newsroom. Sign up for their newsletter.
Many credit unions are marketing meaningless, stale brands.Simply look at some of the brand messages credit unions push in their marketing today. One claims to be the “friendly place,” while another boasts the length of time it’s been serving the community, and then there’s the one telling everyone the credit union “stands prepared” to be the member’s “business partner” because it now offers business loans. (Yawn.) True? Yes. Noteworthy or unique? No.Promoting such weak brands is a waste of marketing dollars and actually does the brand more harm than good, because it tells current and potential members that the credit union has nothing special to offer beyond the standard products and services that can be found at just about any financial institution. continue reading » ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr
In the United Kingdom, 41 percent of respondents have a favorable opinion of the US, the lowest percentage registered in any Pew Research Center survey there. In France, only 31 percent see the US positively, matching the grim ratings from March 2003, at the height of US-France tensions over the Iraq War.Germans give the US particularly low marks on the survey: 26 percent rate the US favorably, similar to the 25 percent in the same March 2003 poll.The US’ global reputation rebounded after the Iraq war and following the election of Democratic president Barack Obama. In France in 2009 for instance, the US favorability rating reached 75 percent.Data from Pew Research Center also shows that the US’ favorability rating drop from last year’s figures in all 13 countries surveyed. The erratic style of United States President Donald Trump’s leadership and his administration’s mishandling of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has infected 6.7 million people and killed more than 197,000 in the country, has battered the superpower nation’s standing in the world, sending its favorability rating in some countries to an all-time low, a fresh Pew Research Center survey has found.The public opinion survey, conducted in 13 countries by interviewing more than 13,000 people between June 10 and Aug. 3, found that 83 percent of respondents have no confidence in the leadership of President Trump, while only 34 percent express a favorable opinion of the US.The US’ reputation took a serious hit especially in Europe, the country’s traditional ally. Part of the decline over the past year is linked to how the US has handled the COVID-19 pandemic, Pew Research Center director for global attitude research Richard Wike said in a press briefing on Tuesday.”People have admired the US for its scientific achievement and technology, and this public health challenge came along and people thought the US could deal well with this big public health challenge,” Wike said.Wike added that the world viewed Trump’s personal attributes and leadership qualities in a negative light.”People say he was intolerant, he wasn’t well qualified, he was arrogant, dangerous and that’s part of the story why he has the lower rating.”Also, some of Trump’s isolationist policies, including withdrawing from the Iran Nuclear Deal, the Paris Climate Accord and a number of free trade agreements, has further damaged the US’ standing in the world, he said.The survey also found that the public views President Trump more negatively than other world leaders.Among the six leaders included in the survey, Angela Merkel receives the highest marks: A median of 76 percent across the nations polled have confidence in the German chancellor. French President Emmanuel Macron also gets largely favorable reviews of 64 percent. Ratings for British Prime Minister Boris Johnson are roughly split.In this “most-trusted leader” category, Trump, with an 83 percent disapproval rating, lands below Chinese Premiere Xi Jinping with 78 percent and Russian President Vladimir Putin, who only got a 23 percent approval rating.The only positive review that President Trump received was from Europeans who have favorable views of right-wing populist parties.For instance, supporters of Spain’s Vox party are likely to view Trump in a positive light: 45 percent are confident in his ability to handle international affairs. In Germany, 34 percent in the far-right party Alternative for Germany (AfD) gave a positive review of Trump, while in the UK, 33 percent of the Brexit Party views the Republican president in a favorable light.(Left to right) Foreign Affairs Minister of Bahrain Abdullatif bin Rashid Al Zayani, Prime Minister of Israel Benjamin Netanyahu, US President Donald Trump, and Foreign Affairs Minister of the United Arab Emirates Abdullah bin Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan participate in the signing ceremony of the Abraham Accords on the South Lawn of the White House on September 15, 2020 in Washington, DC. (Agence France Presse/Alex Wong/Getty Images)Some of the efforts Trump made to improve his standing in the world, including his attempt to broker a peace deal in the Middle East, which recently materialized in the normalization between Israel and Arab countries like Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates, could only do so much to undo some of damages that he had exacted in international politics.”We have seen negative ratings in Jordan over the years, pretty low ratings in the Palestinian territory and from some other countries in the region […] in the past two decades, the reviews have been negative toward the United States,” he said.The new Pew Poll is devastating for how the world sees us. Confidence in the U.S. has plummeted to historic lows. The global public has even greater trust in Putin and Xi Jinping than Trump. We need new leadership. | Pew Research Center https://t.co/0GrmQDcryh— Nicholas Burns (@RNicholasBurns) September 15, 2020Former US Ambassador to North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Nicholas Burns said the new poll was “devastating” and the country needed a new leadership to undo whatever damages Trump had wrought upon the US’ standing in the world.”Confidence in the US has plummeted to historic lows. The global public has even greater trust in Putin and Xi Jinping than Trump,” he said.Topics :
However, he noted that it was highly advisable to add an extra layer inside of a cloth mask to ensure a higher degree of protection.Furthermore, a cloth mask may only be used for a maximum of three hours, at which point the wearer must replace the mask, given that the material tends to absorb droplets from the mouth, he added.Read also: Government to step up mask-wearing campaign amid rising COVID-19 casesAchmad went on to advise the public against wearing masks made of neoprene fabric – often marketed as “scuba” masks – as well as multifunctional headwear or buff masks. “[Scuba and buff masks] do not meet the [health] requirements.”According to the ministry, the chance of COVID-19 contagion might be reduced to as low as 1.5 percent when both the virus carrier and a healthy individual wear masks.The ministry’s mask-wearing policy has previously become a major point of contention, however, when Minister Terawan Agus Putranto initially only advised sick people to wear masks amid the rush of panic-buying at the onset of the pandemic.At the time of writing, the ministry’s office in Kuningan, South Jakarta is the largest virus cluster in the capital.Topics : The Health Ministry has called on the public to use only masks that actually protect them against the coronavirus, explaining that not all masks are made equal.The ministry’s disease control and prevention general director, Achmad Yurianto, said in a statement issued on Monday that three types of masks were specifically designed to prevent the wearer from transmitting and contracting diseases, including COVID-19.“One is the N95 mask, a standard-issue mask typically worn by health workers who directly handle viruses in the laboratory. The others are the surgical mask and cloth mask,” said Achmad.
Infrastructure, Press Release Governor Tom Wolf announced the investment of $66 million for 11 drinking water, wastewater and stormwater projects across nine counties through the Pennsylvania Infrastructure Investment Authority (PENNVEST).“Clean, reliable water systems serve as a vital link to the continued recovery and growth of our communities,” said Gov. Wolf. “Ensuring that Pennsylvania’s citizens have access to safe and secure infrastructure is a fundamental responsibility of government, particularly as we continue to address the health and economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.”The funding for these projects originates from a combination of state funds approved by voters, Growing Greener, Marcellus Legacy funds, federal grants to PENNVEST from the Environmental Protection Agency and recycled loan repayments from previous PENNVEST funding awards. Funds for these projects are disbursed after expenses for work are paid and receipts are submitted to PENNVEST for review.“Local communities across the commonwealth continue to face tough choices every day as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Gov. Wolf. “Investing in community infrastructure improvements like these projects demonstrates the strong commitment that we share to rebuild and grow our great commonwealth.”A list of project summaries follows:Drinking Water ProjectsBedford CountyBedford Township Municipal Authority – received a $5,223,140 loan to replace 8,500 feet of existing waterline and connect new service with 10,150 feet of additional water line, while also replacing the finished water storage tank. The project will increase reliability by eliminating water service interruptions and ensuring stable connections to underserved communities in the service area.Berks CountyFleetwood Borough – received a $3,500,000 loan to replace approximately 8,250 feet of ductile iron and cement-lined piping. The project will replace service lines that are at the end of useful life and increase reliability for nearly 1,800 residents.Mifflin CountyAllensville Municipal Authority – received a $371,950 loan to make improvements to a filtration plant, install flow meters and data acquisition systems and provide disinfection contact piping. The project will bring the system into compliance with a Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) consent order and reduce the risk of Giardia throughout the community.Perry CountyPenn Township Municipal Authority – received a $1,450,000 loan to replace deteriorating water tanks with a new 150,000-gallon, ground-level tank. The project will reduce exposure to iron and manganese and improve water reliability for customers in the service area.Somerset CountyAddison Area Water Authority – received a $575,120 loan to install a chlorination system and water tank, which will eliminate the dependency on existing well pumps. The project will improve reliability of drinking water and significantly reduce water loss through transfer, which is currently estimated at 70 percent.Wastewater ProjectsCambria County**City of Johnstown – received a $6,517,110 grant and a $4,382,890 loan to replace approximately 26,000 feet of sewer line. The project will reduce wet weather overflows into the Stonycreek and Little Conemaugh Rivers, decreasing public exposure to untreated effluent.Lawrence County**New Castle Sanitation Authority – received a $19,132,800 grant and a $12,867,200 loan to make significant improvements to an existing wastewater treatment plant, including construction of a new anoxic tank and renovation of an activated sludge system. The project will meet mandated permit effluent limits and improve aquatic life in the Shenango River.Westmoreland CountyCity of Arnold – received a $117,555 loan to up-size existing piping used to convey wastewater to regional sewage treatment plant. The project will reduce wet weather sewage overflows into the Allegheny River and reduce impact to aquatic life. SHARE Email Facebook Twitter July 22, 2020 Governor Wolf Announces $66 Million Investment in Water Infrastructure Projects in Nine Counties **Western Westmoreland Municipal Authority – received an $11,025,000 loan to install approximately 18,000 feet of sanitary sewer line and manholes, while also stabilizing streambanks along local waterways. The project will eliminate regional stream pollution and address a DEP consent order.Stormwater ProjectsNorthampton CountyBorough of North Catasauqua – received a $618,229 loan to install 5,010 feet of new storm sewer line and associated inlets. The project will alleviate significant residential, business, and traffic flooding conditions.Westmoreland CountyPenn Township – received a $1,106,811 loan to install approximately 1,400 feet of new stormwater piping and retrofit work to existing retention ponds and spillways. The project will provide adequate drainage for a currently undersized system and reduce an estimated 5,916 pounds of sediment into Bushy Run each year.* denotes projects that are funded with Drinking Water State Revolving Funds** denotes projects that are funded with Clean Water State Revolving Funds
Greek company Energean Oil and Gas has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Israel Natural Gas Lines (INGL) that will result in $98 million of cash inflow for Energean. Left to right: Energean Israel Country Manager Shaul Zemach, Energean Group CEO Mathios Rigas, INGL Chairman Eitan Padan and INGL CEO Samuel Tordjman (photo credit: INGL)Energean explained on Monday that the MOU is for the transfer of title of the near shore and onshore part of the infrastructure that will deliver gas from the Karish and Tanin FPSO into the Israeli national gas transmission grid.Energean said it expects the detailed agreement to be signed in the first quarter of 2019.As consideration, INGL will pay Energean 369 million Israeli New Shekels, approximately $98 million. Energean expects 15% of the consideration to be paid and contribute to available liquidity in early 2019. About 80% of the consideration is expected to become available to Energean’s liquidity pool at hand over, with the remaining 5% due following an 18 month warranty period.The MOU covers the onshore section of the Karish and Tanin infrastructure and the near shore section of pipeline extending to approximately 10km offshore. It is intended that the hand over to INGL will become effective shortly after the delivery of first gas from the Karish field in 1Q 2021.Following hand over, INGL will be responsible for the operation and maintenance of this part of the infrastructure. Energean will not incur any charges or tariffs for use of this infrastructure.Mathios Rigas, CEO of Energean Oil & Gas, said: “The MOU is an important milestone for the Karish and Tanin development. The Open Access System infrastructure being built by Energean will enable connection of future gas discoveries to the system, further contributing to Israel’s energy security and diversity of supply. Our collaboration with INGL demonstrates the Israeli government’s support and commitment to the Karish Tanin project, from which natural gas will flow to the Israeli market from 1Q 2021.”The construction of the Karish and Tanin FPSO started last November following the cutting of the first steel at the COSCO yard in Zhoushan, China. Energean has chosen a newbuild FPSO based on an existing design and will adopt a spread moored system, which it believes reduces technical risk on the field. First production is slated to begin in the first quarter of 2021.
Kenyan artist turns rubbish into art A South African artist is using discarded bits of plastic to create his unique works of art. The individual pieces which are now sought after world wide by collectors and art experts are a way to spread his message of hope to the poor. CCTV’s Leslie Mirungu reports.https://youtu.be/aIFj5VNSJygRelated South African artist uses table salt to create unique images Egyptian artist creating unique lights from plumbing materials