Infections in Guyana more prominent in youths – Public Health Minister

first_imgIncreased HIV infection in CaribbeanConsequent to the joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) reporting that the Human Immunodeficiency Virus/Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (HIV/AIDS) infection is on the rise in the Caribbean, Public Health Minister, Dr George Norton has revealed that new infections in Guyana are on the increase, with the younger population significantly accounting for this increase.According to the UNAIDS, “after years of steady decline, the Caribbean saw a nine per cent rise in annual new HIV infections among adults between 2010 and 2015.” The report further alluded that this is as a result of the medical drug for the disease not working as effectively as in the past. Most recently, however, analysis from the UNAIDS shows that the HIV infection among adults remains stagnant, failing to decline for at least five years. The organisation is therefore urging countries to take a more comprehensive approach to battle the disease.Commenting on the statistics reported, Dr Norton stated that Guyana is among the countries that are battling the increase. However, he stated that that infection among the younger population is “very worrying.”“There’s no doubt about it… even our own statistics have shown that there has been some increase. The bad thing about our increase isPublic Health Minister,Dr George Nortonthat it is higher in the younger population. That is worrying because right across the Caribbean it is the new infections are in the lower age,” he stated.Dr Norton further explained that measures have already been put into place to combat this scourge, and the Public Health Ministry is increasing its efforts, saying “We have already started implementing measures to tackle this because we have recognised that people are not really dying from AIDS as before because of the precautions that have been taken.”He related that over the years, despite the increase in infection, there has been a decrease in HIV/AIDS related deaths as there is easier access to care and treatment. “ Not only is the medication less toxic to the body but also in terms of quantity… it’s just like one pill a day even though these antiretroviral treatment are very expensive, they are free of charge here in Guyana and that might be the reason for the population to increase their defence in regards to that disease,” the Minister stated.last_img read more

Mustangs awarded No. 3 seed

first_imgRio Hondo League champion Monrovia earned the No. 10 seed in Division II-AA, and the league was rewarded by sending five teams to the playoffs. The Wildcats will host Redlands, the Citrus Belt’s No. 3 entry on Saturday while second-place La Ca ada plays host to Hacienda Heights Wilson, the Marmonte League’s second-place entry. “They’re \ in the same league with \ A.B. Miller, so it’s going to be tough,” Wildcats coach Mike Wagner said. “Winning the Rio Hondo’s not easy, but teams from our league still have a lot to prove.” South Pasadena travels to Inglewood while San Marino plays at No. 2 Diamond Ranch, the Miramonte League champion. Temple City goes to Claremont in a wild-card game on Thursday. Almont League champion Keppel earned the No. 5 seed in Division II-A and hosts Morro Bay, third-place team from the Los Padres League, Saturday. Alhambra finished third in the Almont and will travel to face Empire League champion Valencia in the first round. The Prep League sent four teams to the Division IV-A playoffs. Flintridge Prep, seeded No. 2, has a first-round bye and will face the winner of Thursday’s game between Duarte and Banning in the second round on Saturday. The Muir High girls basketball teams hopes playing teams such as Long Beach Poly, Bishop Amat, Marlborough and Bishop Montgomery will pay dividends during its pursuit of a CIF-SS Division I-A title. The Pacific League champion Mustangs were awarded the No. 3 seed in Sunday’s pairings and will face Golden Valley in Saturday’s first-round game. Golden Valley is an at-large team from the powerful Foothill League, which boasts top-ranked Hart. center_img In other first-round games, Westridge will be at home against Apple Valley, Pasadena Poly will be at Laguna Blanca and Rio Hondo Prep will be at Hesperia Christian. fred.robledo@sgvn.com (626) 962-8811, Ext. 4485 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

injury-hit Juventus prepare for Ajax kids

first_img0Shares0000Third time lucky: Massimiliano Allegri has lost two Champions League finals with Juventus in 2015 and 2017. © AFP / Marco BertorelloTURIN, Italy, Apr 15 – Juventus can count on fit-again superstar Cristiano Ronaldo but captain Giorgio Chiellini and forward Mario Mandzukic will miss the crunch Champions League quarter-final, second leg clash against Ajax in Turin, coach Massimiliano Allegri confirmed on Monday.Ronaldo, 34, will spearhead the Italian champions’ attack against the young Dutch outfit alongside Federico Bernardeschi on Tuesday, with Allegri still to decide on a third striker to replace Croatian Mandzukic. Portuguese star Ronaldo came back from injury to score a crucial away goal in last week’s 1-1 draw in Amsterdam, having bagged an incredible hat-trick to rescue their campaign in the last 16 against Atletico Madrid.“Thank God he’s playing for us and not the opponents,” Allegri told a press conference in Turin as he outlined his selection headaches on the eve of the game.“Cristiano has extraordinary quality. In certain moments he becomes an unstoppable player and you can see it on his face,” said Allegri“From a physical point of view he’s better, he’s got great skill and quality and during a match becomes a different player.”But the Juventus coach ruled out making the five-time Ballon d’Or winner his team’s skipper in the absence of defender Chiellini.“Ronaldo captain? If (Paulo) Dybala plays it will be Dybala otherwise it will be (Leonardo) Bonucci,” said Allegri.Allegri said he had yet to decide between Argentine forward Dybala and teenager Moise Kean, who has scored six goals in as many games.“Mandzukic was not called up because he had a knee problem. We need to have players in good shape,” said Allegri.“I still need to decide who starts in attack, it could be Dybala or Kean or neither of them. If one of them plays, then one of Mattia de Sciglio and (Joao) Cancelo will be left out.“It depends on what I decide to go with tomorrow night.”– ‘Young team playing like adults’ –Winger Douglas Costa is “not in the best physical shape” after a calf problem and won’t be able to play the whole game, but could play for half an hour.Midfielder Emre Can returns from injury after missing the first leg, and sat alongside Allegri in the press conference.Ajax’s Dutch coach Erik Ten Hag (L) supervises a training session at the Juventus stadium © AFP / Marco BERTORELLO“I watched the game on TV, it’s impressive how they play, but we’re not afraid of them and we want to play our game and win tomorrow.” said the German. “We have to go with the same attitude as game against Atletico. For sure we won’t play for 0-0.”Allegri added: “In Amsterdam we could have, and should have done better. I expected goals to be scored I have the same expectations for tomorrow.”Ajax coach Erik Ten Hag conceded that Juventus were the favourites, as key midfielder Frenkie de Jong, 21, still remains a doubt for the Dutch league leaders with a hamstring problem.“After tonight’s training, we will see,” said Ten Hag.“This is the perfect challenge for us. After 1-1 in Amsterdam they are favourites.“Being able to beat Real Madrid was a remarkable achievement and hopefully tomorrow we’ll be able to have another memorable match,” he warned.“We believe we can definitely compete with these giants.“We’re a young team but play like adults, we showed it against Real Madrid.”0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)last_img read more

Snoop Dogg credits `Tookie’

first_imgSAN QUENTIN – Rapper Snoop Dogg urged Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger on Saturday to grant clemency to Stanley “Tookie” Williams, so he can continue his work with young people. “Stanley `Tookie’ Williams is not just a regular old guy, he’s an inspirator,” the rapper and former Crips member told a crowd of about 1,000 outside the main gate of San Quentin State Prison. “His voice needs to be heard.” Williams, 51, is set to be executed Dec. 13. He was convicted in 1979 of murdering four people during two robberies in Los Angeles and Whittier. He has exhausted his appeals and he has asked Schwarzenegger for clemency. Snoop Dogg, 33, whose real name is Calvin Broadus, said after he saw “Redemption,” the award-winning television movie based on Williams’ life and starring Jamie Foxx, he realized he needed to contribute more to his community and to young people, in particular. “I come from the east side of Long Beach, home of where gang-banging is an all-time must and Crippin’ is at an all-time high. I was once a Crip gang member,” he said, adding that the music business helped him leave that life behind. He now does youth outreach activities, including running a football league for youngsters. “I didn’t get this from somebody that was on the streets. I got this from Stanley `Tookie’ Williams, a brother that was locked up on Death Row,” he said, wearing a white T-shirt with huge black letters that said savetookie.org. “He inspired me to want to do something positive with my life and to go touch the kids.” The rapper had wanted to visit Williams on Death Row, but his application was denied by prison officials because of his criminal record. Snoop Dogg has been arrested several times for weapons and drug-related offenses, according to the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation. Organizers played a new Snoop Dogg song called “Real Soon,” which promotes Williams’ advocacy work. It was expected to be available Monday as a download from the rapper’s Web site. Members of the Nation of Islam along with California Highway Patrol and Marin County sheriff’s deputies provided security for Saturday’s event. No incidents were reported. Volunteers sold T-shirts, doughnuts and coffee. Paperback copies of Williams’ memoir, “Blue Rage, Black Redemption” also were available. All proceeds were to benefit the Save Tookie Foundation, organizers said. Todd Chretien, who works with the Campaign to End the Death Penalty, an advocacy group that helped organize the rally, implored the governor to grant clemency. “There is no reason on earth to kill him, and there is every reason to keep him alive,” he said. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREBlues bury Kings early with four first-period goals 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img

Update: ESB dealing with major fault across Donegal

first_imgESB Networks are dealing with a large fault which left thousands of homes and business across Donegal without electricity this Friday afternoon.The unexpected outage was caused by a ‘large fault’, according to ESB Networks.The outage affected Letterkenny, Milford, Finn Valley, Fanad and many surrounding areas. Power was restored to Letterkenny at approx 12.30pm.However, ESB crews say that over 1,400 customers in the Milford area may not have supplies restored until 4pm.Gardaí are warning motorists to be aware that some of the traffic lights are not operating because of the outage. Some Garda Station phone lines are not working. In the case of an emergency call 999.    Update: ESB dealing with major fault across Donegal was last modified: September 9th, 2019 by Rachel McLaughlinShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Can Raiders’ Kolton Miller, Brandon Parker bounce back against Colts?

first_imgCarr … For complete Oakland Raiders coverage follow us on Flipboard.ALAMEDA — Kolton Miller and Brandon Parker will likely pass on horror movies with Halloween approaching.They saw enough grisly footage in the aftermath of the Raiders’ 27-3 loss to the Seattle Seahawks in London before the bye.The rookie starting tackles were bewitched, beaten and bewildered against the Seahawks, with Frank Clark and Quinton Jefferson doing as they pleased and Derek Carr taking the brunt of it.last_img

Privileged Planet Confirmed!

first_imgDr Jerry Bergman, professor, author and speaker, is a frequent contributor to Creation-Evolution Headlines. See his Author Profile for his previous articles. Dr Bergman’s latest book has just been released today: Fossil Forensics: Separating Fact from Fantasy in Paleontology. Order now… available in print and Kindle editions.(Visited 637 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0 by Dr Jerry BergmanThe cover story by professor Howard Smith in the latest issue of the journal titled American Scientist asked “Are There Other Earths?” The answer was “Recent Astronomical Discoveries show Our Planet is Far from Average”.[i] New planets outside of our solar system, called exoplanets–planets that orbit another star– were first discovered in 1996. As of 2017, the total exoplanet tally now stands at about 3,200, and the vast majority are very un-Earthlike. Those that resemble earth so-far show no signs of intelligent life.The article title, “Questioning Copernican Mediocrity,” refers to the famed 20th century Cornell University astronomer, Carl Sagan, who proclaimed “We live on an insignificant planet, of a humdrum star, lost in a galaxy, tucked away in some forgotten corner of a universe” which he presumed is also humdrum as well.[ii] The source of this worldview that Sagan describes, Smith writes, is “implied by Darwin’s theory of natural selection, that humanity is the meaningless product of evolutionary processes.”[iii] Smith then notes that one of the dramatic developments in modern astronomy, namely the discovery of many planets around other stars, “suggest that we may not be so ordinary after all,” and may “be special in some way” after all.[iv]Around the turn of the last century many scientists assumed that life must be common in the universe. The leading American astronomer, Percival Lowell, wrote in a book published in 1908 that “From all that we have learned” life is “as inevitable … as is quartz or feldspar or nitrogenous soil. Each and all of them are only manifestations of chemical affinity.”[v] Today we know that this conclusion is naïve in the extreme. The SETI (search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence) research project, using the most sophisticated modern search technology, has found no clear sign of extraterrestrial intelligence in its 50 years of searching.[vi] Smith then stresses that all of the evidence we have now is that we live on a rare planet and we must protect “our rare planet and its precious inhabitants”[vii]The idea that our planet’s traits are rare in the universe has produced a spat of books that eloquently document the same conclusion. One example is Rare Earth: Why Complex Life is Uncommon in the Universe.[viii] In this book, paleontologist Peter Ward and astronomer Donald Brownlee claim that Earth’s planet type is rare, and advanced life is also rare. The reason, they document, is  that complex intelligent life requires an exceptionally unlikely set of circumstances, and therefore is likely to be extremely uncommon in the universe. One of the most recent books, Lucky Planet: Why Earth is Exceptional—and What That Means for Life in the Universe[ix] by David Waltham used more recent data and research to arrive at the same conclusion.Ironically, one of the most popular books in this area, The Privileged Planet: How Our Place in the Cosmos is Designed for Discovery,[x] by astronomer Guillermo Gonzalez and philosophy professor Jay Richards and the movie[xi] by the same title, resulted in the termination of professor Gonzalez at Iowa State University. This case is documented in the film Expelled[xii] and in Chapter 12 of Slaughter of the Dissidents.[xiii] Several Iowa State University faculty stated that Gonzalez was denied tenure because the university feared that granting Gonzalez tenure would cause the university to become associated with the idea that life is the result of intelligent design of a Privileged Planet.The Gonzalez case illustrates the fact that many atheists and university professors want to ensure that the idea that humans, and all life, are not special does not lose support. This is shown by the fact that, if life is found in many places throughout the universe, this fact proves that life can evolve purely as a result of the laws of physics without the need for an intelligent creator. The article and the books discussed above strongly argue against this worldview. And this is the reason why Gonzalez and other like-minded scientists have been denied tenure or fired. And the number is not small.[xiv][i] Howard A. Smith. 2017. Questioning Copernican Mediocrity. American Scientist. 105(4):232-239.July-August.[ii] Smith. 2017. p. 232.[iii] Smith. 2017. p. 232.[iv] Smith. 2017. p. 232.[v] Smith. 2017. p. 233.[vi] Smith. 2017. p. 236.[vii] Smith, 2017. p. 239.[viii] Copernicus Publishers. New York. 2000.[ix] New York: Basic Books. 2014.[x]  Regnery Publishing, Washington, DC. 2004[xi] The Privileged Planet. Illustra Media. 2010.[xii] Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed. Starring Ben Stein and directed by Nathan Frankowski. Premise Media Corporation. 2008.[xiii] Leafcutter Press Southworth, WA. 2nd edition. 2012. Chapter 12 pp. 229-259.[xiv] 8000 dissidents | Search Results | iSoullast_img read more

Oldest Animal Cave Painting Baffles Evolutionary Anthropologists

first_imgHow did cave art of animals appear on opposite sides of the world at the same time?What’s being called the oldest cave painting of an animal has been dated by evolutionary anthropologists at a minimum of 40,000 years old. The baffling thing is that similar cave art in Europe dates to roughly the same time period, 37,000 years. And that’s not the only conundrum for evolutionary dates: later cave paintings on the same wall, overlapping the “oldest” ones, they date at 20,000 years and 4,000 years, respectively. The paper, published by Aubert et al in Nature, “Paleolithic Cave Art in Borneo,” ends:It is now evident that rock art emerges in Borneo at around the same time as the earliest forms of artistic expression appear in Europe in association with the arrival of modern humans (45,000–43,000 calibrated years bp). Thus, similar cave art traditions appear to arise near-contemporaneously in the extreme west and extreme east of Eurasia. Whether this is a coincidence, the result of cultural convergence in widely separated regions, large-scale migrations of a distinct Eurasian population or another cause remains unknown.Let’s briefly consider their four options:Coincidence: this is no explanation at all. It’s the same as saying, “stuff happens.”Cultural convergence: same as #1.Large-scale migrations of a distinct Eurasian population: migration is plausible, but one would expect travelers on foot to leave many similar cave paintings along the way.Another cause: same as #1.Un-Human TimelineThe article on Live Science by Laura Geggel repeats the authors’ contention that the art was made in three phases wildly separated in time, by tens of thousands of years — much longer than the entire history of recorded civilization. There is a little bit of progression in subject matter, but not that much:1. “The first phase, which dates to between 52,000 and 40,000 years ago, includes hand stencils and reddish-orange ochre-drawn animals,” Geggel claims. At that time, the island of Borneo was connected to the mainland, according to long-age geology.2. “A major change happened to the culture during the icy Last Glacial Maximum about 20,000 years ago, which led to a new style of rock art — one that focused on the human world. The artists in this phase favored a dark mulberry-purple color and painted hand stencils, abstract signs and human-like figures wearing elaborate headdresses and engaging in various activities, such as hunting or ritualistic dancing, the researchers said.” And yet the hand stencils appear virtually identical to the older ones just inches away, which they claim were made at least 20,000 years before that.“We don’t know if these [different types of cave art] are from two different groups of humans, or if it represents the evolution of a particular culture,” Aubert said.3. “The final phase of rock art includes humanlike figures, boats and geometric designs that were mostly drawn with black pigments, the researchers said.” They claim these are 4,000 years old, when Neolithic (stone age) farmers moved into the region. The island of Borneo was separated from the Malay peninsula by at least 330 miles long before that, according to the story.The scientists used uranium-thorium dating of calcite deposits in the cave to make their timeline, extracting microscopic bits of it for dating. But given their results, they have no idea how to reconcile the long ages and “convergent” features so widely separated temporally and geographically. Scientists can always use humor for relief of bafflement caused by incredulity, by restating their dogma with a smile. Phys.org quips,“That’s very cool, from a human point of view,” said Peter Veth, an archaeologist at the University of Western Australia, who was not involved in the study. “People adopted similar strategies in different environments as they became more modern.“The cave paintings were known since 1994, Live Science says, but were not radiometrically dated till now. The ochre bull painting is about 5 feet wide, showing good representation of musculature and form. The same kind of bull lives in Borneo today. As in Europe, the earliest cave art is of higher quality than the more recent drawings, which portray humans as simple stick-figures.To see how ridiculous the evolutionists’ tale is, let’s recreate it with friends you know. Remember, the evolutionists are talking about fully modern humans making this art: modern Homo sapiens, with all the brain power and physical features we have, and probably less corrupted than ours because of our civilized lifestyles. Let’s assume four generations per century.The story begins with people like you, before civilization, hunting and gathering and eating and sleeping. A few of them find a cave one day and decide to make hand prints on the wall. Another one draws a bull he had just slaughtered for the cave cookout. They go home, hunt, gather, grow old, and die. Their children hunt, gather, grow old, and die. Johnny gets so fed up with this tedious life, he asks mom and dad, “I’m so bored! Can’t we make a hut and plant some of these vegetables instead of walking so far to find them?” Two hundred centuries pass. In that time, 800 generations do nothing but hunt, gather, grow old, and die. Their land gradually separates from the mainland and becomes an island.Finally, someone goes into the same cave, finds the hand prints, and decides to make more, using a different color. His friends etch some silly stick figures next to the prints and draw funny hair on top. They laugh and go home, and continue to hunt, gather, grow old, and die. More hundreds of generations pass. Susy is so fed up with this tedious life, she asks, “Can’t I have a pony for my birthday?” Johnny the Thousandth asks his parents, “Can’t I get a video game for a change? I’m sick of this life!” After 640 more generations have passed, someone enters the very same cave and draws more figures, which are not any better artistically than the first ones. Then something amazing happens. Poof! Civilization!Who can believe this myth? We know what humans do. We know they are creative, inventive, and motivated to improve their lives. Why doesn’t anybody in the media stare down the scientists who write these silly tales and tell them, “Your story is incredible! Nobody could ever fall for it.” Why is there no critical thinker in the media questioning these vast eons where nothing interesting happens, but then civilization appears almost by magic? Here’s why: Darwin needs the time.The Biblical story is so much more lifelike. It feels exactly like what we know to be true about human nature. Just a few thousand years ago, people with fallen natures but the image of God in them want to unite and build a tower, to make a name for themselves. When their plan is thwarted, they go their separate ways, each with complex languages. A few struggle to survive in harsh environments, but villages, towns, and cities emerge rapidly. Ambitious men decide to gain power, and become kings and dictators, waging war on each other. They get more creative at war over time. Others use their creativity for nobler purposes. It’s just like the Bible says.But what about the radiometric dating? No dating method comes without assumptions. When you take microscopic bits of calcite out of a cave, with possibilities for contamination and erosion of your samples, and use decay rates that we have only measured for a little over a century, can you really speak with confidence about happenings that are orders of magnitude longer? Has anyone experienced 40,000 years, let alone millions? Remember, these ages are being told by the same fallible people who want you to believe their story about the hand prints being made hundreds of generations apart. Scientists are good at measuring repeatable things in the lab, but they don’t know everything about the distant past. They weren’t there, and not one of them has ever experienced 100 years, let alone 40,000. Here’s a case where the man on the street who has common sense about human nature could be a better judge of which story is more plausible, if the two stories were told side by side without jargon. (Visited 839 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

Be good brand ambassadors for South Africa

first_imgWherever they go in the world, all citizens should be good brand ambassadors and promote the country, according to according to the deputy minister of communications. She also called on journalists to report accurately and for gender equality in the workplace. During a gathering with media on a tour by Brand South Africa, Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams said people should be ambassadors wherever they go. (Image: Melissa Javan ) Melissa JavanCitizens should be brand ambassadors for the country wherever they go, according to Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams, the deputy minister of communications.She was speaking at a gathering hosted by the Nelson Mandela Foundation in Houghton, attended by local and foreign journalists who were on a weeklong tour of Joburg hosted by Brand South Africa. The journalists were able to interact with the deputy minister as well as business representatives at the meeting, held on 19 March.South Africa was celebrating 21 years of democracy, Ndabeni-Abrahams reminded guests. With this in mind, the government would like South Africans to remember their roles in the country. “We would like [South Africans] to help us perfect the work that was done before by those who had their time.”Business, neighbouring countries and journalists should work with each other and the government, she added. Turning to Mandela, she said he had made South Africans realise that they should work together with their counterparts.Freedom is important for the younger generation. “[The struggle heroes] gave their lives as well as their families to get freedom. How do we keep the torch burning? We cannot be totally free if our people in different areas are not.”Referring to Mandela using his clan name, she asked: “How can we not betray Tata Madiba’s legacy or Oliver Tambo’s wealth?” Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams said we should not betray what struggle heroes fought for and should fight for freedom for everyone. (Image:sanews.gov.za )Everyone who could do something in South Africa should be mobilised. “Human rights and freedom of expression come with responsibilities. We still have those who [carry hurt from the past]. How do we in our daily lives instil hope in the hopeless, in those with a painful past?”Ndabeni-Abrahams called South Africa a healing nation, and invited everyone to play a part: “If you are going to play your part, you have to share the vision.”She also took the opportunity to challenge local journalists for not reporting correctly especially on scandals relating to the government. “You [journalists] have responsibilities as communicators. You can never be a good reporter if you don’t understand your story,” she said.“As we criticise each other, it’s important not to destroy. Our brand is crucial. When you do wrong, acknowledge it and let others expose,” she said, calling on journalists to get local content from the people and “tell it like it is”.Turning to gender equality in business, the minister said women still did not get equal treatment. “In terms of the core [of a company or institution], you don’t find women there.”It was not enough for women to just be in human resources. Gender transformation was important. “You need to invest in your employees.”The guests at the meeting also visited the Centre of Memory at the foundation. They visited Mandela’s office and saw personal items such as his notebooks and photos. The media also got the chance to go through Madiba’s belongings at the Centre of Memory. (Image: Melissa Javan )last_img read more

Teamwork to find water quality solutions

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Lake Erie was once known around the world for its pollution and water quality problems, but in the 1970s, farmers, environmental groups and industry teamed up to clean up the Lake. This was done by dramatically reducing the total amount phosphorus, much of it attached to soil particles. For farmers, conservation tillage and no-till were an important part of the solution. No-till reduces soil erosion, which reduces the amount of phosphorus attached to soil particles that are leaving the field.The improvements in Lake Erie were amazing, but, unfortunately the problem is back, and this time it is the more vexing form of dissolved phosphorus. To complicate matters, no-till actually may facilitate the loss of dissolved phosphorus. A similar team effort is required to address the complexities of current water quality issues.Without tillage to incorporate fertilizer, over years of application nutrients can get concentrated at the soil surface. At the surface, nutrients are less useful for plants and more prone to be dissolved in solution during big rain events. Once dissolved, they can run off the surface or down to tile lines through hydrologic pathways in the soil.“There is no easy answer for this,” said Andrew Sharpley, a leading expert on phosphorus from the University of Arkansas. “Conservation tillage is one of the biggest benefits in terms of reducing erosion and reducing the total amounts of phosphorus getting into lakes. It has been a huge benefit, but what happens is that there is more soluble phosphorus getting in that can have an impact on the lakes. It doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be doing conservation tillage, but there is a downside to conservation tillage that we need to be aware of. Plowing can reduce dissolved phosphorus, but plowing also increases erosion.”As more research is being conducted on the complex issues with water quality and agriculture, there is increasing focus on the need for incorporation of nutrients.“We need to think about subsurface placement of those nutrients. That is not saying we need to till that in necessarily,” said Kevin King, with USDA’s Agricultural Research Service in Columbus. “We can do that in a no-till fashion. But get those nutrients down three or four inches deep and that will go a long way in reducing what we see coming off the sites.”With this challenge in mind, The Nature Conservancy approached John Deere last year to look for a solution to this problem that maintains the integrity and benefits of no-till and allows for nutrient application below the surface. John Deere then reached out to dealers Kenn-Feld Group and Findlay Implement Co. in the Lake Erie Watershed, along with Ohio State University Extension and USDA-ARS, to find solutions to this problem of harmful algal blooms in Lake Erie.“The biggest things we are hearing from all of these groups is the importance of getting the product incorporated in the soil,” said Kevin Ward, Integrated Solutions Manager for Findlay Implement. “We have the biggest issues when the product is on top of the ground. John Deere and The Nature Conservancy are working together to try and find ways to help our customers that want to do their part in reference to the water quality issues. We started looking at products that we already had out there that could address this problem.”After some thinking, there was significant potential identified with the John Deere 2510H — an anhydrous tool bar for either pre-plant or sidedress applications.“It is considered a high speed applicator of up to 10 miles per hour for anhydrous application,” Ward said. “The design is like a no-till drill opener. There is very minimal soil disturbance and it can be used for fall incorporation or sidedress or pre-plant anhydrous. We take a Montag cart and mount behind it and add a dry tube and hoses to it to make it a dry injector. ”The modified 2510H is less weather sensitive than common strip-till tool and is capable of variable rate application. It is also a tool that is fairly common in the Lake Erie Watershed. The tool offers low disturbance using up to 30% less fuel than conventional applicators and dual season use opportunities. It also features variable depth placement capabilities from 2.5 to 5.5 inches and can be used for single or dual product application.“This tool is essentially strip-tilling without having to plant on the strip,” Ward said. “If you already have the standard anhydrous tool bar, it can be modified for around $50,000 to do this. It includes our geo-referencing equipment so when you apply, your record keeping is done. It is date stamped so you have proof in records that you can print from the computer. That is one thing a lot of guys really like about this, especially with the recently passed legislation that requires more detailed record keeping.”Ward and Matt Fueling, Integrated Solutions Manager for Kenn-Feld Group, gave a presentation on the tool at the Conservation Tillage and Technology Conference in Ada this spring and generated quite a bit of discussion and interest.“You can get 40 acres an hour when you’re running it. You’re doubling the speed you would have with a strip-tiller. With this, it is in the ground and it is done. You can use it with no-till or in a conventional till system. If you are in no-till it is a way to incorporate your fertilizer and maintain your no-till,” Ward said. “From what we have heard from our customers, they believe they can cut rates and plant close to the strip. Field performance has been excellent. We really like the tool. The Nature Conservancy supports placing the nutrient under the soil surface and no-till. This tool does just that.”Experts agree that there is tremendous potential with the use of the tool for reducing the loss of dissolved phosphorus by incorporating fertilizer.“We had it at a field day in Lucas County last summer,” Ward said. “There is a lot of interest but it is an added expense. We have two customers who currently have bars like this.”The Kenn-Feld Group, Findlay Implement Company, The Nature Conservancy and local Soil and Water Conservation Districts are offering the opportunity to rent the 2510H nutrient applicator adapted for bulk dry fertilizer placement this fall for a low rate.“We’d like to get it out to more growers so they can experience the tool,” Ward said.For more information, contact Kevin Ward at 419-424-0471 or kward@findlay-imp.com.last_img read more