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Utilities, maintenance leadership provides updates on carbon reduction goals

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first_imgNatalie Weber Paul Kempf, ND assistant vice president for utilities and maintenance, speaks on the University’s energy efforts on Tuesday in Bond Hall.Kempf said efforts trace back to 2010 when the University decided to make energy a main focus of its sustainability initiatives. Working towards carbon reduction, Notre Dame has depended on a number of strategies, Kempf said.“I think our perspective was that we wanted to take advantage of the assets the University already owned, and that we had invested in, and get our value out of those, but at the same time reduce in carbon,” he said. “And like a good investment portfolio, diversification is always a good practice.”One such way the University plans to reduce its carbon output is through the construction of a new hydroelectric plant in South Bend, for which the University broke ground on Aug. 19.“Hydro will actually produce, based on today’s usage, 7% of electricity we use on campus, and it will reduce our carbon foot by 9,700 tons,” Kempf said. “Our carbon footprint today is probably about 190,000 pounds. So it will reduce our carbon footprint by 5 or 6%. Not a huge number. But there isn’t a home run here, folks, there are a lot of little projects that go together to reduce their carbon footprint.”Kempf also explained how the University’s East Plant — which houses the geothermal fields’ mechanical equipment, water chillers and a thermal energy storage tank — functions. He said the water chillers work at night — a time when power is cheaper, or the University has excess power because of a lower energy demand. Using this load shifting, Notre Dame has been able to increase its energy efficiency, Kempf said.The University also uses energy from a solar array it owns near the local airport. According to the South Bend Tribune, Notre Dame estimated the array would reduce its carbon dioxide emissions by 2,000 tons over the course of about 20 years.“Our plan was, we weren’t going to try to produce more solar energy than we needed for [the] facility,” Kempf said. “We really wanted to be able to have some amount of power we bought all the time and have the full benefit of the solar array to the facility.”Notre Dame also purchases about half of its electricity from Indiana Michigan Power, Kempf said.“What they do on their side of the ledger matters to us as well,” he said. “They have a partner on that side that’s doing things to try to reduce their carbon footprint.”As a whole, the University is continuing to look for more cost-effective and carbon-reductive strategies, Kempf said.“There’s a whole series of different projects, some of those ones that I just mentioned,” he said. “So we have a roadmap [but] we’re always looking to see if we can make a better roadmap.”Tags: carbon reductions, coal, East Plan, Energy Week, Geothermal Field, hydroelectric plant, renewable energy, solar power, sustainability, Utilities and Maintenance Notre Dame’s coal pile is dwindling as it focuses on taking advantage of other fuel sources and works towards its goal of stopping coal combustion by the end of 2020.Assistant vice president for utilities and maintenance Paul Kempf gave updates on the University’s progress towards this goal during a presentation Tuesday afternoon. During the talk, he focused on Notre Dame’s hydroelectric plant, purchased power, geothermal fields and a number of other strategies the University is employing to work on carbon reduction.last_img

Theatre in the Park to hold 2017 season auditions at new Johnson County Arts and Heritage Center next month

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first_imgThe Johnson County Arts and Heritage Center will house Theatre in the Park productions at various times throughout the year after it opens in the coming months.If you’ve got a yearning to grab a piece of the theatre limelight this year, you won’t have to travel far to make your case to the casters for this year’s lineup of shows for Johnson County’s Theatre in the Park.Register to continuelast_img

Shawnee Mission administration sends apology letters to student plaintiffs in 1st Amendment case

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first_imgStudent protestors at SM North the afternoon of National School Walkout day in April 2018.As part of compliance with the settlement agreement approved by a federal judge in April, the Shawnee Mission School District has issued letters of apology to students who sued the district last year for violating their 1st Amendment rights during the National School Walkout protests in spring 2018.Plaintiffs received letters by certified mail in recent weeks with a letter signed by Superintendent Michael Fulton. The copy of the apology is as follows:On behalf of the Shawnee Mission School District, I want to express my sincere and heartfelt apology to you for the incidents that took place around the April 18, 2018, National School Walkout. As educators, it is our responsibility to help students find their voice, and our actions last spring, as detailed in the settlement agreement, fell short of that expectation. We are committed to working with students to support their first amendment rights to free expression and will support that commitment through Board of Education policy and staff training.Each letter was accompanied by a $1 bill — the nominal damages requested by the plaintiffs as part of the agreement.In addition to the apology, the district has committed to:having administrators trained on students’ 1st Amendment rights, andadopting new policy language clarifying students’ rights to express their views in non-school sponsored events and to protect student journalistsShawnee Mission Chief Communication Officer David Smith said in late May that the district has not established a specific timeline for complying with the other parts of the settlement, but that “the district is working in good faith to fulfill its obligations under the settlement agreement, including communicating with plaintiffs, developing policy language, and providing training for administrators.”last_img

Michigan and Ohio State will once again square off for title

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first_imgMichigan and Ohio State will once again square off for title Luke MiddendorfNovember 15, 2007Jump to CommentsShare on FacebookShare on TwitterShare via EmailPrintIt’s all come down to this – Michigan and Ohio State for the Big Ten Championship.While it may be seen as a normal occurrence, both teams have taken interesting routes to get the opportunity to play for the title on Saturday.After receiving a No. 5 preseason ranking, Michigan fell in historic proportions to Appalachian State in its first game, followed by a blow-out loss to Oregon in the next, 39-7.The Wolverines then quickly dropped out of the top 25 rankings, but slowly fought their way back to the top of the Big Ten by rattling off eight straight wins.Michigan’s impressive streak ended last week in a loss at Wisconsin, but still have earned the right to play for the conference crown with a 6-1 record in the Big Ten.Ohio State’s road to the conference title game featured less of an up-and-down rollercoaster ride, but rather more of a gradual climb to the top with a sudden drop at the end.The Buckeyes obtained a preseason ranking of No. 11, and week-by-week began to work their way to the top of the national polls.But after retaining the No. 1 spot for four straight weeks while also building upon a 20-game Big Ten winning streak, Ohio State was upset by Illinois in Columbus last week, 28-21.It was the Illini’s first win over a No. 1 team since 1956 and also gave them their eighth win of the season, the most for Illinois since 2001.One week after its most shocking loss of the season, Ohio State faces its toughest test of the year in Michigan on Saturday. Coach Jim Tressel said it’s time to forget the past and prepare for the future.“Our kids played extremely hard last weekend and hats off to Illinois for doing what they needed to do to come up with a victory,” Tressel said. “Now we’ve got to get back up and get after it and get ready for this one.”Michigan has a similar task to accomplish, but also has the advantage of experiencing and overcoming a difficult loss earlier in the season.Wolverines head coach Lloyd Carr said that the perseverance of his team has been commendable through the ups and downs of the 2007 season.“I think our guys have fought through a lot of issues, particularly on the injury front,” Carr said. “I think we’ve had great leadership from our seniors. And we’ve had a lot of different guys in the course of this season step in and fill the breach and compete and do the things that would help us to win. And I think that’s been a special thing about this team.” And many are hoping that these two “special” teams will be able to produce one special game as they collide for one of the best rivalries in all of sports.“It’s an exciting time,” Tressel said. “As you know, it’s what we are at Ohio State for and why the guys are at Michigan to play in the greatest game that there is and it’s exciting with the Big Ten title on the line and just a lot of tremendous history.”10 eligible teamsWith Iowa, Michigan State and Northwestern all gaining their sixth wins last weekend, the Big Ten now officially has 10 teams that are bowl-eligible.That is the most teams in the history of the Big Ten that have earned eligibility for the postseason in one season, but not all of the teams may actually be playing in a bowl game.The Big Ten has seven bowl tie-ins this season, with a chance for an eighth if the Big Ten Champion is ranked first or second in the final polling to play for the BCS National Championship Game.Most likely the seven teams chosen for bowl games will be selected by how well their fans travel to away games, combined with their strength of schedule.First-year coach Mark Dantonio of Michigan State said the bowl game helps give the program much-needed exposure and also sets the expectation of having a winning program.“After this first season, we want to say, hey, we are a winning program,” he said. “I’d really rather say that than say we’re a .500 program right now. We’re building, building a foundation.”Players of the weekSophomore quarterback Juice Williams picked up the offensive player of the week award by tossing a career high four touchdown passes and rushing for 70 yards to lead Illinois over former No. 1 ranked Ohio State.On defense, the co-players of the week are junior linebacker Dan Connor of Penn State and junior defensive end Matt Shaughnessy of Wisconsin. Connor matched a career-high with 18 tackles in the Nittany Lions shut-out win over Temple, while Shaughnessy collected seven tackles and 2.5 tackles for a loss in the Badgers’ win over Michigan.Junior kick returner James Bailey of Indiana received the award for special teams by returning four kickoffs for a career-best 161 yards, including a nifty 91-yard touchdown scamper.last_img

University of Minnesota ranks third in national study of women head coaches

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first_imgWendy Davis, who started the University’s women’s rowing program in 2000 and serves as its head coach, said she has seen changes over the years in regard to women coaches.During her time as a student-athlete rower at the University of California at Los Angeles, Davis said she only had a handful of women coaches. She said Title IX not only opened the door for women participating in sports but also coaching.“Now we have high quality women with the perspective, the knowledge, and they know what it’s like to be a female athlete,” Davis said. While Title IX opened the doors for women to play and coach sports, LaVoi said the number of women coaches is declining.“Both male and female athletic directors cite family obligations as a reason for why there are fewer women,” she said.The decline has been reflected in women’s rowing, Davis said.“There are eight Big Ten schools that have a women’s rowing program, but only two have women head coaches, Davis said. “It used to be 50 percent, but now it’s not.”The Tucker Center’s goal is to raise awareness of the lack of women coaches and stimulate dialogue to hold decision makers accountable, LaVoi said.Since the data was collected, the University has added Lindsay Whalen as the women’s basketball coach. This will not affect the University’s ranking as she replaced former head coach Marlene Stollings.Although the University’s rank is not likely to change this year, athletic leaders say it’s an example for athletic directors across the U.S.“They jumped [up] in one year, so Minnesota is a nice example of how to do it right,” LaVoi said. University of Minnesota ranks third in national study of women head coachesThe University of Minnesota ranked third in the percentage of women coaching women’s sports.Daily Photo StaffHead Coaches Stephanie Golan, Lindsey Whalen and Catrina Thompson David MullenJuly 11, 2018Jump to CommentsShare on FacebookShare on TwitterShare via EmailPrintA new national ranking suggests the University of Minnesota is among the best in the nation for hiring women as head coaches for women’s sports. The University was ranked third in an annual report from the Tucker Center that examines the amount of women head coaches who are coaching women’s sports at the NCAA Division I level, which is an increase of eight spots from the previous year. Of the 12 women’s sports at the University of Minnesota, there are 14 head coaching positions as some sports have two head coaches. Nine of the total coaching positions at the University are held by women.Nicole LaVoi, report author and senior lecturer in the University’s School of Kinesiology, said around 42 percent of all women’s college teams are coached by a woman.Having just over 64 percent of Gopher women’s sports coached by women, Minnesota received a “B” grade, according to the report.The University of Cincinnati and University of Central Florida received “A” grades this year.The University’s national rank rose from 11th in 2017 to third when Catrina Thompson was hired as the head coach of the women’s tennis team. Thompson replaced Chuck Merzbacher when he retired from the job in April 2017. “I think for the success Minnesota athletics has had, [the ranking] doesn’t surprise me at all,” Thompson said. This is the sixth annual report conducted by the Tucker Center, which is associated with the University through the College of Education and Human Development.The report takes an in-depth look at athletic departments from seven major women sports conferences, including the AAC, ACC, Big East, Big Ten, Big 12, PAC-12 and SEC.Each athletic department receives a grade which is scaled A through F, which is based on the percentage of women head coaches for women’s teams. The grading scale for the report card is different from a typical class’ scale – anything above 70 percent is an A, 55 to 69 percent is a B and 40 to 54 percent is a C.LaVoi said the University has always received a “B” grade.last_img

First human trial of NIH-GSK Ebola vaccine shows promise

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first_imgResearchers from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and GSK today reported promising initial findings from early human tests for one of two Ebola vaccines destined for West Africa, the first in a flurry of results expected by the end of the year.The vaccine, called ChAD3, uses a modified chimpanzee adenovirus and was developed by the US National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the NIH, and GSK.Researchers reported findings from a 20-person trial today in an early online edition of the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM). Experts not involved in the trial expressed optimism about the results but raised some potential issues.Trials of various vaccinesInvestigators are studying two versions of the vaccine. The bivalent version reported in today's NEJM report contains genetic material from Zaire and Sudan Ebola species, the two most lethal strains. The Zaire strain is responsible for West Africa's outbreak. The phase 1 trial launched in early September at the NIH Clinical Center in Bethesda. Md.The bivalent version of the vaccine is also being tested at Emory University in Atlanta to collect more safety and immunogenicity data, the NIH said today in a backgrounder on its Ebola vaccine trials.Tests of a monovalent version that contains genetic material only from the Zaire strain began in October at the University of Maryland in Baltimore, with results expected by the end of 2014. Trials of the monovalent vaccine are also under way in the United Kingdom, Mali, and Switzerland, with initial safety and immunogenicity results also expected by the end of the year.Two phase 1 studies of the Canadian-developed vaccine—also a monovalent version—launched in the United States in October. That vaccine uses an Ebola virus protein spliced into a vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV-EBOV). A trial of the vaccine at the NIH Clinical Center involves a prime-boost strategy at three different antigen levels and another trial, conducted at the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research, is testing a single dose of the vaccine at the same three antigen levels.Early results for the VSV-EBOV vaccine are also expected by the end of the year, according to an Oct 22 NIAID statement.Immunogenicity and safety resultsThe trial of the bivalent ChAD3 vaccine involved 20 healthy adults. Half received a lower dose of 2 X 1010 particle units (PUs), and half received a higher dose of 2 X 1011 PUs. Researchers tested their blood 2 weeks and 4 weeks after vaccination to assess antibody levels.Antibodies were detected in all 20 study participants within 4 weeks of vaccination, but levels were higher in those who received the higher dose.Based on earlier studies of the vaccine in nonhuman primates, the investigators looked at the T-cell immune response and found that the vaccine did induce a T-cell response, including CD8, 4 weeks after immunization in many of the volunteers: 2 of 10 who received the smaller dose and 7 of 10 who received the larger dose.Julie Ledgerwood, DO, chief of the clinical trials program at the NIAID Vaccine Research Center and the study's primary investigator, said in an NIAID statement that earlier studies suggested that CD8 T cells played a key role in protecting vaccinated animals who received a lethal Ebola dose. "The size and quality of the CD8 T cell response we saw in this trial are similar to that observed in non-human primates vaccinated with the candidate vaccine."When they looked at tolerability, the study team found no serious adverse events, though two people who received the higher dose developed a brief fever within a day of vaccination. The fevers resolved within 24 hours with fever-reducing medication.Anthony Fauci, MD, NIAID's director, said in the statement today that safe and effective vaccines could play a role in shutting down the current outbreak and preventing large ones in the future. "Based on these positive results from the first human trial of this candidate vaccine, we are continuing our accelerated plan for larger trials to determine if the vaccine is efficacious in preventing Ebola infection."Based on early encouraging results for the bivalent vaccine, NIAID said it is in active discussions with Liberian health officials and other partners about the next steps for testing the vaccine in West Africa. It said goals of the phase 2/3 tests are to reveal more about whether the vaccine works, adding that plans for those trials hinge on the results of other phase 1 studies  under way.The agency said it doesn't expect to make any announcements on larger-scale testing until early 2015.Experts welcome results, air remaining questionsFauci told CIDRAP News that the study was a success, showing that the vaccine is safe and produces a response that researchers predict will be protective. He said the few fevers participants had were easily managed and that the response at the higher of the two doses was comparable to the protection seen in monkeys that were subjected to a lethal Ebola challenge.Daniel Bausch, MD, MPH, of Tulane School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine in New Orleans, wrote today in an NEJM editorial that both of the vaccines furthest along in the developmental pipeline have shown to be 100% protective in nonhuman primates 4 to 5 weeks after a single dose, offering hope that their help in stemming West Africa's outbreak is more than theoretical.Though the results described in today's study are promising, several questions remain, he pointed out. For example, the better immune response that came with the larger dose was also associated with minor adverse events, which included fever and leucopenia. Bausch said that although no serious adverse events were seen, the sample size was too small to draw firm conclusions.Squeezing the maximum number of doses from the vaccine supply is also important to consider when gauging the results of Ebola vaccine studies, he said.Bausch wrote that two issues that cloud the analysis of the new study, and those that will follow, are lack of knowledge about correlates of immunity—the antibody levels that actually signify protection from disease—and lack of standardization of stock viruses. He added that until more is known about immune correlates, it's tough to say if the response to the lower dose described in today's NEJM report is "good enough."Other key question are the length of protection and the possible need for a booster and if the vaccine is effective in West African settings, and the results from other ongoing studies will shed light on the issues, Bausch said.Researchers face stiff headwinds in the months ahead, with tough decisions hanging in the balance about dosage, whether traditional phase 2 and 3 trials can be done ethically in West Africa's outbreak region, and if the two top vaccine candidates should be compared head to head, he wrote. "The road is still long and there are many challenges, but we are nevertheless one step closer to a solution."Michael T. Osterholm, PhD, MPH, director of the University of Minnesota's Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy, publisher of CIDRAP News, said the first study results are welcome news, as health groups move forward with the Ebola vaccine. "It's critical to get these studies done," he said.He said a key issue will be determining the dose, which will factor in to how much vaccine can be made and how quickly production could be scaled up. He said the dose that was most effective in the study was a substantial one. "It gives you pause," he said.For comparison, the multiple-dose VSV-EBOV trial involves doses of 3 X 106, 2 X 107, and 1 X 108 PUs, which are orders of magnitude smaller.Fauci said he's not too concerned about the dose issue. He said that other studies that are under way on the vaccine, especially the one in the United Kingdom, are exploring lower doses. He added that he's confident that there won't be any problems scaling up enough doses to proceed with additional clinical trials that are planned.See also:Nov 26 NEJM studyNov 26 NEJM editorialNov 26 NIAID press releaseNov 26 NIAID Q and AOct 22 NIAID statementlast_img

Belize pushes for responsible stewardship of world’s oceans

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first_img CARICOM and UNEP extend cooperation on environment Sep 21, 2020 Strong CARICOM participation on Day One of UN Ocean ConferenceCaribbean Community (CARICOM) Member States sent a strong signal about their commitment to saving the oceans by taking lead roles in a number of the activities on Day One of the UN Oceans conference in New York, Monday 5 June, 2017. Grenada facilitated two strongly supported events on the Blue…June 6, 2017In "Barbados"CARICOM – Strengthening regional and global networks to achieve sustainable development goalsThe Caribbean Community (CARICOM) staged its Side-Event at the UN Oceans Conference in New York, Wednesday, with a strong focus on networking and collaboration to help the region achieve its sustainable development goals. The event, titled “Ocean Governance and SIDS Sustainable Development”, was convened as a partnership involving CARICOM Member…June 8, 2017In "Barbados"CSEF VI highlights transformative role clean energy can play in CARICOMClean energy in the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) has to be further developed to play a transformative role in economic development, poverty alleviation, and building resilience to deal with climate change. Electricity and fuel sector regulations also must be right-sized to suit the needs of Member States, and stakeholders must find…December 12, 2018In "Belize"Share this on WhatsApp Oct 7, 2020 You may be interested in... Sep 25, 2020 CARICOM congratulates Belize on its 39th Independence… center_img CARPHA: Leading the Caribbean’s COVID-19 Response – VIDEO Share this:PrintTwitterFacebookLinkedInLike this:Like Loading... Oct 7, 2020 Standards, Quality Still Important “Belize is also the only country in the world to have developed a national multi-species system of marine tenure and zoning, locally known as managed access. This system has proven reliable as a tool to empower traditional fishers to protect their fishing area.” Dr. Omar Figueroa, Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries, Forestry, the Environment, Sustainable Development & Climate Change, Belize, speaking at the United Nations Ocean Conference, Tuesday. See Minister’s presentation  –  VIDEOlast_img

Letter To The Editor: Paving Paradise To Put Up A Parking Lot…

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first_imgThe development plan from TNJ included paving most of the land for parking. Ironically, there may not be enough parking to accommodate the hotel’s guests as well as the 250 to 300 potential attendees of the conference center. Public comments during the meeting raised other concerns about this planned “give-away”: Why pave paradise just to put up a parking lot? Why is the County proposing to give nearly $2 million to a private developer for a major hotel chain? Several local small business owners described how they built their businesses on their own, without a County subsidy. A representative of the new owners of the Holiday Inn Express remarked that they plan to invest about $2 Million to renovate it, also without a County subsidy. Why is developer TNJ being so favored by the County? That phrase, from a 1960s protest song, describes what our County proposes to do very soon. Why is the return on the County’s investment in this project so low? Materials prepared for the meeting show this land give-away would result in a net benefit to the County of about $50,000 per year. That does not include the employee payroll, which, while it benefits employees, does not benefit the community. Why can’t the Canyon Rim Trail go through this property along the rim, rather than being relegated to sidewalks around the hotel? center_img The County Council’s Aug. 27 meeting included a plan to give 2.5 acres of County land to a private developer, TNJ, to build a Marriott hotel and conference center. The land, valued at nearly $2 Million, is located on the recently paved south end of 20th Street, where the “Smart House” is located. Why is this plan being pushed through so quickly? Apparently the County has owned this land since the 1950s or 1960s, so why the rush now to just give it away? The County seems to be treating this land as an unwanted liability, rather than the remarkable resource it is. By Leigh House and Gloria Gilmore-HouseLos Alamos Although the Council anticipated passing a resolution to give the land to developer TNJ at the Aug. 27 meeting, it did not pass. The Council decided to consider this topic again at its Oct. 1 meeting. If you are interested in or concerned by this proposed County give-away, consider attending that meeting to voice your concerns. The many questions raised about this development seemed to be summed up in a remark by a Councilor: “this project does not seem to be the best use for this land”.last_img

Park Lane Properties reveal multi-million pound Mayfair plans

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first_imgWould 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 newsletters To access this article REGISTER NOWWould you like print copies, app and digital replica access too? SUBSCRIBE for as little as £5 per week.last_img