Sometimes spring flowers occur in fall

first_imgAlthough there are notable exceptions, the majority of flowering plants in the Arnold Arboretum’s Living Collection bloom over the course of spring and early summer. While it is normal for some plants like the Franklin tree (Franklinia alatamaha) to flower in early fall, the autumn or winter occurrence of flowers on plants that normally bloom in spring can be a surprising sight in the landscape. Why do some spring-blooming trees come back into flower in the off season? Is it a sign of climate change?For Iñaki Hormaza, a research associate of the Arnold Arboretum and professor at the Mayora Research Station of the Spanish Council for Scientific Research (CSIC), this phenomenon provides an opportunity to study how plants regulate their biological functions. “As temperatures start to drop after summer,” he explains, “flower buds enter a dormant stage to help them to survive harsh winter conditions.” The duration of this dormancy is specific for each plant, but usually lasts the entire winter. “Once the plant has accumulated its required number of cold hours,” he adds, “warmer temperatures induce flowering.” Read Full Storylast_img read more

On the Blogs: Australian Government Proposes Funneling Clean Energy Funds Into Coal

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Sophie Vorath for RenewEconomy:The Turnbull Coalition government has kicked off its informal re-election campaign by repeating its desire to build a massive coal fired power station in north Queensland, only this time it proposes to use climate funds to help pay for the project.In confirmation that little has changed in the switch from the Abbott to the Turnbull regimes, Queensland MP Ewan Jones became the latest member of the Coalition to outline the federal government’s plan for future energy innovation: more fossil fuels.On the same day as a compelling economic case for shifting Australia to 100 per cent renewable energy is published, and just days ahead of Australia signing the Paris climate agreement, Jones suggested that the government could use funds from Direct Action, as well as the Clean Energy Finance Corporation and the northern Australian infrastructure fund, to support development of a 1.2GW coal-fired generator in north Queensland.Ignore for a moment the fact that Australia already has a surplus of nearly 7,000MW of coal-fired capacity, and the carbon emissions impact of adding yet more, Jones argued that a coal-fired power station was critical to address unemployment issues around Townsville.Leaving aside the obvious contradiction of using federal government funds allocated to fight climate change and to finance renewable energy to build a coal plant to power a coal mine, it sounds like a great plan – just not one for this century.For a more 21st century approach to the problems of future energy supply in a world that is committed to curbing dangerous global warming, the Coalition need only take a look at the Institute for Sustainable Futures in Sydney report, released on Tuesday.The report, which was commissioned by GetUp and Solar Citizens, models a scenario where not just electricity, but also all transport and heat used by Australian industry, is transitioned to 100% renewable energy by 2050.The study found that making this shift would cost about $800 billion between now and 2050. And while that amounts to about $650 billion more than continuing with the status quo, this cost is more than cancelled out by removing the need for fossil fuels, and thus saving the economy up to $740 billion; a total saving of $90 billion over the period to 2050.In short, fuel cost savings would cover 110 per cent of the capital investment required to transition the economy.Separately, John Hewson, a former leader of the Liberal Party leader and an economist,  said, “the Adani Carmichael mine is a massive mistake for this country” – both economically and from the point of view of climate change. The Indian energy minister this week repeated his intention to bring an end to coal imports into India“To contemplate opening a large new mine simply for the benefit of exporting that coal to India, it boggles my mind.”“Having said that I think there are some interesting projects around in North Queensland,” he added, pointing to a project in the region he had been working on for the last couple of years, which was helping the sugar cane industry diversify, by keeping the waste the gas from the sugar cane and using it to generate 100 per cent renewable electricity.“You can have a game changer in the sugar industry by a simple application of technology. I think that’s where a big future exists for northern Australia, is applying technology. And you can have a lot of renewable energy generated in the sugar industry all the way down the coast if you just apply that simple model.”“The model we have is you build a plant a mill that’s about a 100-year life, you pay back all the debt and equity under that model in 25 years and the family get to own it…for the next 75 years, pass it on to your family.“These are solutions that have got economic benefit, obviously jobs and growth, but equally very significant social benefits, and they keep families together, they keep the industry going, they rejuvenate a town like Townsville.”Coalition wants to build 1.2GW coal plant, using climate funds On the Blogs: Australian Government Proposes Funneling Clean Energy Funds Into Coallast_img read more

Stand for the Land

first_imgDon’t just get outand discover North Carolina’s natural places – take a stand and advocate forland and water conservation so they’re protected forever. 🙌 When you ditch your everyday routine and get outside to hike, bike, run and paddle consider this… Many of North Carolina’s parks, greenways, trails and overlooks that you love to explore are not there by accident. They are the result of careful, consistent and dedicated partnerships between NC land trusts, the local communities they serve, and public funding appropriated by the NC General Assembly. So many things that we can accomplish in our lifetime are fading – but the land can be forever. Enter your email here to join our action alert network and be notified when we need you to join with us in our mission to protect North Carolina’s diverse beauty and stand with us for the land. 💪 Withoutpeople like you reminding your lawmakers and elected officials that land andwater conservation needs to be a priority, this work would not be possible. Moneyfrom the Conservation Trust Funds doesn’t only go to the purchase of conservedlands but it also supports critical upkeep and maintenance required to providesafe access to parks for all of us. 🔨 Enter your email here to be alerted when important land and water conservation policy issues need action. Severalproperties featured on this map of North Carolina outdoor places have beenconserved with generous funding awarded by the Clean Water Management TrustFund and Parks and Recreation Trust Fund including No. 21 Waterrock Knob; No.23, The Orchard at Altapass; and No. 105, Springer’s Point Preserve. To date, atotal of $1.24 billion has beenawarded to worthy land, water, farmland, and park projects across NorthCarolina. North Carolina voters believe land and water conservation are important assets. According to a survey, 77% of registered voters say that protecting the forests is important and 78% say that protecting fishing and wildlife is important. 🎣 If you agree, now is the time to add your voice to an important issue. You’re part of a growing movement. Everyday in North Carolina is like something out of a movie – from the lush, greenforests 🌿 to the sandy dunes of the coast 🏖, there’s something for everyonehere. Even a drive on your morning commute can give you a small glimpse of thebeauty of this state. If, asNorth Carolina residents, we want to continue to enjoy the beauty thatsurrounds us every day, then we need to unite and advocate. We must let thosethat have been appointed to serve us know what issues are close to our hearts. last_img read more

Cuomo’s Teachout Challenge Tossed, Stage Set for Sept. Primary

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s campaign struck out for the second time in successive weeks as it tried, but failed, to knock Democratic primary challenger Zephyr Teachout off the ballot, unsuccessfully arguing that she hasn’t lived in New York State long enough to run for governor.A state appellate court unanimously ruled Wednesday in favor of Teachout, who was also victorious last week when a lower court shot down Cuomo’s residency challenge.“Although Zephyr R. Teachout has resided in several different residences within the City of New York since 2009, while maintaining close connections to her childhood [home] of Vermont, that is nothing more than an ambiguity in the residency calculus,” the four-judge panel hearing the case wrote in their decision. “The burden in this proceeding is not on Teachout to establish residency, but rather, upon the petitioners to establish by clear and convincing evidence that she does not meet the residency requirements” established by the state constitution.“The Supreme Court’s determination that the petitioners failed to meet their burden of demonstrating that Teachout did not meet the constitutional residency requirements for the office of governor is warranted by the facts,” the judges added.After the ruling, Teachout’s campaign sent an email to supporters in which it called Cuomo’s lawsuit “frivolous” and highlighted several issues that Teachout has used to fire up her supporters: schools, fracking—a hot button issue that Cuomo failed to address during his first term—and what the campaign called “Cuomo’s abuse of power in Albany,” a not-so-subtle jab at the governor, whose office is facing allegations of interfering with the Moreland Commission that he tasked with investigating political corruption before he unceremoniously disbanded it in March.The stage is now set for a Sept. 9 primary between Cuomo, who is armed with a more than $30 million war chest and is still viewed favorably by a majority of New Yorkers, and Teachout, a Fordham Law School professor with a strong following among progressives but still largely unknown by many voters in the state.Teachout appears emboldened by Cuomo’s attempt to push her off the primary ballot. Her campaign was also buoyed by an endorsement from the New York State Public Employees Federation, the second-largest employee union in the state. Earlier this month she also got the nod from the Progressive Change Campaign Committee.New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo has failed to push his Democratic primary challenger Zephyr Teachout off the ballot.She’s also received a substantial amount of press, including frequent coverage in The New York Times—partly due to Cuomo’s lawsuit against her—national news outlets and in the Village Voice, the New York City alt-weekly, which featured the gubernatorial-hopeful on its cover for an article titled: “The Outsider: Zephyr Teachout Will Never Be Governor, So Why is Andrew Cuomo Worried?”Teachout isn’t all Cuomo needs to worry about, however. A Quinnipiac University poll released Wednesday which revealed that 48 percent of voters believe Cuomo is part of the state’s “corruption problem.”Those same voters, though, appear conflicted. Fifty-percent disapprove of how Cuomo has handled ethics in state government, but the same percentage of voters also find him honest and trustworthy.Despite recent efforts to improve her visibility, Teachout is still a relative unknown, according to the poll, which found that 88 percent of voters don’t know enough about her.Maurice Carroll, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Poll, said of Teachout: she’s “about as anonymous as a candidate can be.”Teachout has repeatedly called on Cuomo to debate her, but the governor has yet to respond to her invitation.She’s not the only one proposing a debate.NY1 and Time Warner Cable News in Albany this week sent an invitation to both Cuomo and Teachout to a live debate on Sept. 2.Teachout’s campaign has already signed up.Cuomo has until Aug. 28 to RSVP.last_img read more

Dani Ceballos signing will present Unai Emery with new Mesut Ozil problem, claims Steve Nicol

first_imgDani Ceballos signing will present Unai Emery with new Mesut Ozil problem, claims Steve Nicol Arsenal are closing in on the loan signing of Dani Ceballos (Picture: Getty)‘You certainly can’t play both of them in the same team. So that means you’re going to play him ahead of Ozil?‘He’s a good player yes but as I said, Arsenal’s problems aren’t going forward. They score goals, they excite the fans, but they can’t defend.‘Dani Ceballos doesn’t help them in that department.’More: Arsenal FCArsenal flop Denis Suarez delivers verdict on Thomas Partey and Lucas Torreira movesThomas Partey debut? Ian Wright picks his Arsenal starting XI vs Manchester CityArsene Wenger explains why Mikel Arteta is ‘lucky’ to be managing Arsenal Comment Metro Sport ReporterWednesday 24 Jul 2019 5:43 pmShare this article via facebookShare this article via twitterShare this article via messengerShare this with Share this article via emailShare this article via flipboardCopy link Advertisement Advertisement Mesut Ozil has impressed on Arsenal’s pre-seaosn tour of America (Picture: Getty)Liverpool legend Steve Nicol has questioned Unai Emery’s pursuit of Real Madrid star Dani Ceballos and believes the Arsenal manager is set to create himself a new Mesut Ozil dilemma.Arsenal are set to sign the 22-year-old midfielder on a season-long loan with the player said to have arrived in London for his medical on Tuesday.Ozil struggled to win over Emery last season and was left out of several high-profile matches, particularly away from home.Arsenal have been unable to find a buyer for a player who signed a contract worth £350,000-a-week 18 months ago but the 30-year-old has shown flashes of his best form on the pre-season tour of America which culminated in last night’s penalty shootout defeat against Real Madrid in Washington.AdvertisementAdvertisementADVERTISEMENTMore: FootballRio Ferdinand urges Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to drop Manchester United starChelsea defender Fikayo Tomori reveals why he made U-turn over transfer deadline day moveMikel Arteta rates Thomas Partey’s chances of making his Arsenal debut vs Man CityNicol believes Emery would be better served, however, concentrating on reinforcing Arsenal’s notoriously porous defence rather than add to his attacking options with a player who shares many of Ozil’s attacking characteristics.‘I’ve got to say, when I’m looking at Arsenal, I’m thinking ‘right, they need to strengthen, no question’,’ Nicol said.But their problems are all defensive, at the back and in the middle of the park. And when you’ve already got Mesut Ozil, why are you going out and getting Dani Ceballos?last_img read more

Government Pension Fund Global cites ‘particularly strong’ EM equity returns

first_imgNorway’s NOK5.5trn (€556bn) Government Pension Fund Global has seen investment growth of 3.3% over the last quarter, with emerging market equity outperforming developed markets.While second-quarter figures for the fund noted that returns had been “particularly strong” in countries including Russia, Turkey and Brazil, the returns must be contrasted with prior equity losses in the markets over the last year.However, emerging market equity nevertheless returned 7.4%, 3 percentage points above developed market equity.Norges Bank Investment Management (NBIM) also noted the financial sector was its worst performing industry, with its equity holdings only returning 2.1% – compared with 11.8% from oil and gas companies. The report said increasing numbers of lawsuits against the financials sector, the rising cost of settlements and regulatory pressure negatively affected the sector’s return.Underlining the performance problems, the fund said BNP Paribas, UBS and Credit Suisse Group had been the worst performing stocks over the last quarter.Signalling further problems for the financial sector, NBIM also said it would support changes to the board structure at a number of those regarded as systemically important by the world’s regulators.“One of the core principles of good corporate governance is the separation of board of directors from the day-to-day management of the company,” it said.“One of the clearest ways of achieving this is to separate the roles of chairman and CEO. In the second quarter, this principle formed the basis for our voting at systemically important financial institutions, where we see particular benefits in keeping the roles of chairman and CEO separate.”The Financial Stability Board in 2011 listed 29 banks as systemically important.Among those, US bank Wells Fargo and JP Morgan Chase and others currently have joint chief executives and chairmen, a matter of shareholder pressure in recent years.The fund’s fixed income portfolio returned 2% over the course of the quarter, with inflation-linked bonds offering the strongest return at 3.3%.It also shifted further into emerging markets, increasing holdings in fixed income and equity from over the previous quarter by 0.1 percentage points and 0.3 percentage points, respectively.Real estate outperformed fixed income, offering a 3% quarterly return, with the portfolio’s growth over the last year apparent from rental revenue.Rental income almost doubled over the past year, to NOK1.5bn for the first six months, with returns from its property portfolio to date at 5.1%.However, its property portfolio, when measured in local currency, returned 7% over the first six months of the year.Despite property only so far accounting for 1.2% of the fund’s value, NBIM highlighted its plan to aggressively invest in the area.“With real estate eventually accounting for as much as 5%  of the value of the fund, our goal is to build a global but concentrated real estate portfolio,” it said.“We expect to invest 1% of the fund each of the next three years in the private real estate markets.”last_img read more

Westpac rate hike fallout: 45% of Queenslanders to fix home loan

first_imgNearly half of all Queensland mortgage holders plan to fix their home loan rate in the next 12 months, according to new research. Photographer: Liam Kidston.NEARLY half of all mortgage holders in Queensland plan to fix their home loan in the next 12 months, amid the threat of more lenders hiking interest rates.A new survey by finder.com.au has found 45 per cent of borrowers in the state are set to make the move by July 2019.It follows the move by Westpac to become the first of the Big Four banks to raise interest rates independently of the Reserve Bank of Australia. GET THE LATEST REAL ESTATE NEWS DIRECT TO YOUR INBOX HERE The Reserve Bank of Australia left the official cash rate on hold at 1.5 per cent at its last board meeting. Image: AAP/Brendan Esposito.Finder.com.au money expert Bessie Hassan said fixing rates was one way borrowers could mitigate risk in an uncertain mortgage market. “Borrowers have been spooked by recent out-of-cycle interest rate rises, with Westpac the first of the Big Four to do so,” Ms Hassan said.“As the threat of other lenders increasing their rates grows we expect to see more borrowers opting to lock in a fixed interest rate.”Ms Hassan said borrowers should be chasing a home loan rate with a three in front of it — whether it’s a variable or fixed mortgage. WESTPAC TRIGGER FIRST RATE RISE FOR ALL HOMEOWNERS The other Big Four banks are expected to follow Westpac’s lead. Image: AAP/Joel Carrett.RateCity research director Sally Tindall said she expected the other three big banks to follow suit soon.“If your lender hikes your interest rate, it’s the perfect time to start considering your options,” she said.“Ironically, the banks are desperately seeking out customers to boost their lagging profit margins. “They’re doing this by offering rock bottom rates, but only to new customers so if you’ve got a bit of equity in your home, now is a great time to consider refinancing.”center_img Westpac has hiked interest rates on variable home loans.Variable rate customers who have their mortgage with Westpac — and some of its subsidiaries — will be forking out an average of $35 extra a month and $420 a year, after the bank increased rates by 14 basis points.Nationally, 38 per cent of mortgage holders across the country plan to fix their home loan in the next 12 months, according to finder.com.au, but the push was being led by Queensland and NSW. TOP PROPERTY MARKET ON THE COAST More from newsParks and wildlife the new lust-haves post coronavirus17 hours agoNoosa’s best beachfront penthouse is about to hit the market17 hours agolast_img read more

Veja Mate Pushes SMC to New Heights

first_imgThe provision of technicians by Specialist Marine Consultants (SMC) to the 402MW Veja Mate project saw SMC reach a significant milestone – the company now contracts over 100 people.The Veja Mate wind farm comprises 67 Siemens SWT-6.0-154 turbines installed in the German part of the North Sea. The construction of the Veja Mate wind farm was completed in less than 14 months, and just 23 months after the Financial Close.Specialist Marine Consultants Ltd was established in 2006 by Captain Ian Coates. In its early days, the company’s sole remit was the provision of vessel inspections to the oil & gas sector. Over the last eleven years the business has grown and now provides a range of specialist services and personnel across the oil & gas, offshore wind and utilities sectors.“The business started eleven years ago with one person and has now grown in scale to employ over one hundred members of staff,” Coates said.”This is a tribute to the hard work, professionalism, high standards and a dominant safety culture that SMC has built its foundations on since day one. Thank you to all personnel past and present, who have, and continue to work to the highest safety standards. We must also thank our large client base for their continued support and up take of SMC’s specialist services.”Veja Mate is a EUR 1.9 billion project owned by the Highland Group Holdings Ltd, Siemens Financial Services and CI II managed by Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners.last_img read more

Legalizing Assisted Suicide Takes Away Mental Health Care for the Disabled

first_imgLifeNews 10 August 2016Family First Comment: “Many people don’t realize how making disability a legitimate condition for suicide jeopardizes the safety of all disabled Canadians….  This assisted-dying legislation takes away the mental health safety net for disabled Canadians.”When I was born the doctors told my parents to put me in an institution. Luckily, my parents ignored the doctor’s advice and took me home.Initially I went to a segregated school, and then argued my way into a regular school. I went on to complete an undergrad in Humanities and a Master’s in Family Therapy. I now have a successful career as a speaker. I’m married, I have two grown children, and I have a great life.In the discussion about Canada’s assisted dying legislation, many people don’t realize how making disability a legitimate condition for suicide jeopardizes the safety of all disabled Canadians.So let me try to explain.What would happen if my wife died and I became depressed and suicidal?Now if a non-disabled Canadian becomes suicidal, there is a commitment among psychiatrists and counselors to rekindle that person’s desire to live, and if necessary to protect that person from themselves.However, as a disabled Canadian, if I become suicidal it is possible and even likely that the psychiatrist will see that as a rational and informed decision.And that commitment to help me move through and beyond my suicidal state might now be seen as forcing me to live an unbearable life.And so that psychiatrist may, in fact, help me die. That terrifies me.As a disabled Canadian, I want the same commitment to suicide prevention that is afforded to non-disabled Canadians. This assisted-dying legislation takes away the mental health safety net for disabled Canadians.http://www.lifenews.com/2016/08/10/legalizing-assisted-suicide-takes-away-mental-health-care-for-the-disabled/Keep up with family issues in NZ. Receive our weekly emails direct to your Inbox.last_img read more

Will captain Kings XI Punjab with an open mind: KL Rahul

first_imgKOLKATA: New Kings XI Punjab captain KL Rahul is unsure if the burden of captaincy would take a toll on his batting, as he feels previous form would count for little, and that all cricketers would be ‘slightly’ nervous when the Indian Premier League (IPL) starts this month in the UAE.The 28-year old stylish batsman was in red hot form in white-ball cricket when the COVID-19 pandemic reared its ugly head a few of months ago, bringing the world to a standstill. Having last played in the Ranji Trophy semi-final for Karnataka against Bengal in February, Rahul said his batting was “all over the place” when he hit the nets for the first time two months ago. Therefore, he said, he is not sure his rich vein of form will count or not when he leads KXIP in the cash-rich league in two weeks’ time. “Firstly, I think we are starting fresh. I don’t think what has happened seven months prior will matter now,” Rahul told IANS in an interview from Dubai. “We are all coming into the tournament with not [having played] a lot of cricket. So, I am not if my batting form is going to be the same as it was seven months ago. We all as cricketers are slightly nervous because we haven’t played a lot of cricket, like I said,” said the man who is now India’s first-choice wicket-keeper in white ball cricket. “And in a tournament like IPL which is huge, I would be lying if I say all of us are not nervous at all. We are, but that’s the challenge of sport. No one expected this to happen. ” Rahul said he is looking forward to captaincy and will go into it with an open mind. “Coming to captaincy, I don’t know if it’s going to play a part [in my batting] or if it’s going to hamper anything but I am quite looking forward to the responsibility. “I have always enjoyed that leadership role and I have always enjoyed having responsibility on my shoulders. Like I said it’s the first time I am doing it so…I am going into this with an open mind and to learn on the go from each game and each day,” stressed. “The first hit I had was a couple of months back in Bangalore. I got in a couple of sessions. Those two days were very, very bad and I was very nervous and my batting was all over the place. It was a bit scary. But I realised [rustiness] after two sessions; the third session slightly got better. Then I started hitting the ball well. Then, there was a break and before coming here I did get a few sessions in Bangalore,” he said. Asked if MS Dhoni’s retirement will add to expectations from him behind the stumps, Rahul admitted the expectations are there. “Yes the expectations are always there from not just me but all the XI that represent the country and all 15 guys who are playing in the team. Does it make me conscious? I don’t think so. Not so far at least,” he said. “For now, my focus is solely on the IPL and getting some cricket under me. It’s a place nobody can ever fill in Indian cricket. That’s something I genuinely feel. Whatever role is given to me, it excites me. I am not very conscious about it,” he conceded. Rahul further said he would look to use whatever he has learned from Dhoni and Virat Kohli when he leads the IPL franchise, besides also leaning from his observations of England’s ODI World Cup-winning skipper Eoin Morgan, New Zealand captain Kane Williamson, and compatriot and Mumbai Indians skipper Rohit Sharma. “Having had the opportunity to play under them and with them has been a great learning. Both of them are different individuals and they lead the team differently but one thing that stands out is the passion that they have for the country and the team,” he said. “Their will to always win and push the team and take the team together is something I have learnt and would want to use the same thing with my team. Also, watching Rohit [Sharma]…I have quite enjoyed Kane Williamson and Eoin Morgan’s captaincy as well.” KXIP are yet to win the IPL in 12 attempts, but Rahul said the focus will not be on that; it would be on the process. “It is important all of us stay in the present and we must focus on the process and not worry about the end result,” he said. (IANS) Also Watch: Watch: Patient Being Taken to Hospital in Hand Cartlast_img read more