SDI to Educate Communities on Forest Governance

first_imgSDI Coordinator, Nora BowierSustainable Development Initiative (SDI), a forest watchdog that provides updates on the use of Liberia’s forest, has launched a project aimed exclusively at empowering forest community dwellers to be more knowledgeable of the significance of the forests.At the launch of the US$99,925 project on Thursday, August 16 in Monrovia, under the title, “Strengthening Community Forestry Structures and Their Governance”, Nora Bowier, SDI’s Coordinator, said that the project seeks to enhance community empowerment so that community members can sustainably use their forest to yield the benefits that belong to them.Ms. Bowier said SDI will ensure that communities possessing forests will be provided technical knowledge and capacity so that they will have the benefit of their forest, and not “business as usual.”She said as they are set to commence the project, they need support from their partners, including community members, to ensure that the goals and objectives are met in the one-year period the SDI has as the project’s time frame.The project is funded by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), European Union, UKAID and Sweden.Already, the EU is making a huge investment in Liberia’s forest sector under the Voluntary Partnership Agreement (VPA).  The VPA seeks to ensure that logs harvested from Liberia’s forest are certificated before leaving for countries within the EU.Additionally, the EU has negotiated with the Liberian government through the Forestry Development Authority (FDA) to set certain percent of income from logging to affected communities as a benefit to them.This arrangement has at some points proven successful in the forest county of River Cess, but projects initiated from income from logging in that county are currently stalled due to exhaustion of the fund without accountability.While performing the launch of the project, Abraham Guillen, VPA Support Unit Team Leader in Liberia, said they are glad to liaise with a non-governmental institution like the SDI for such a project.Mr. Guillen said it is an essential engagement to make communities know their rights to the forest, and to have some benefits, but it should be done in a sustainable way so that the forest will not be depleted to make Liberia be like other desert countries.Also, Guillen warned that community dwellers and government should use the forest in a way to discourage illegal logging activities.A representative of the EU at the launch, David Palacio, said that it is premature to be happy at the beginning of the launch.“I cannot accept congratulations for now; the results from the implementation will bring congratulations [more] than the launch,” David said.He said the EU through the VPA has invested huge sums of money in Liberia’s forest for sustenance and benefits to the forest communities.Palacio added that they are implementing the project to help Liberia avoid running out of forests in 15 to 20 years from now, and be like other countries in the West African region.Also commenting, Mariatou Njie, FAO Representative to Liberia, said forests play significant roles in the livelihoods of poor people, and it is important that communities be involved in forest governance.She said, “participatory approaches are central to the concept of community involvement, and practical implementation is relying heavily on community forestry experiences.”She added that FAO over the years spearheaded the concept of community-based forestry as key elements in achieving social, economic and environmental objectives to sustainable forest management.Gertrude W. K. Nyaley, FDA Technical Manager of Community Forest Department, for her part, lauded the launch of the project.Meanwhile, the project will promote knowledge and technical skills to eight community Forestry Management bodies in Nimba, River Cess, Sinoe, Grand Gedeh and Lofa Counties.This will provide insight to community members about their rights and responsibilities in community forest management with focus on youth and women participation.It will also strengthen technical capacities of the National Union of Community Forest Management Boards (CFMB) to negotiate fair deals with logging companies and investors, and to monitor the negotiations of Commercial Use Contracts (CUCs).These activities will be approached through meetings with forestry stakeholders, including representatives of FDA, Community Forest Development Committee, CFMB Union, civil society, and the targeted communities to create awareness.Other methods include conduct of Free, Prior, Informed Consent (FPIC) capacity building events; holding of education and awareness meetings on Community Rights Law of 2017, conduct of record keeping, and bookkeeping skills training; and collaborating with the NUCFMB to conduct four regional awareness and education events on the use of the Commercial Use Contract template, and provide logistical support to the UNCFMB to participate and monitor at least two negotiations involving two new CFMAs and third party investors.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

A’s Piscotty returns to team and awaits melanoma test results

first_imgOAKLAND — Stephen Piscotty walked in to the Athletics clubhouse around 2 p.m. Saturday, four hours before Game 2 of a three-game series against the Seattle Mariners, looking no different than any other day other than a bandage on the outer lobe of his right ear.He visited with manager Bob Melvin and a couple of teammates, updating them on his condition after having surgery to remove a melanoma, and through an Athletics spokesman declined to speak to he media, saying he’d talk “at a future …last_img read more

Slugs likely this summer

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Something very small has benefited from the heavy rainfall that has played havoc with field crops statewide: the slimy and frequently hungry gray garden slug.Planting corns and soybeans early sometimes helps reduce the amount of damage from slugs because the crop has a chance to outpace the growth of the slug, whose appetite increases as it matures, said Kelley Tilmon, a field crop entomologist with Ohio State University Extension.But with above average rainfall across the state and some late-season frosts, a significant number of farmers are planting — or replanting — corn and soybeans later in the growing season. And those emerging plants are tasty meals for the slithering bandits.This spring and summer might just offer the perfect conditions for slugs, including the gray garden slug, the species that typically creates the biggest problem for growers of field crops, Tilmon said.“We get the worst problems when we have very small plants combined with large slugs because they’re out there happily feeding on them,” Tilmon said. “That’s a bad combination.”Slugs tend to build up in fields that aren’t tilled, where they’re protected by the leftover remains of past years’ crops, Tilmon said. During the day, slugs can seek cover under past crop residue, taking advantage of the shade and extra layer of moisture. At night, they feast. Not only are the emerging plants vulnerable to slugs, but slugs can chomp away at seeds as well.They are not picky eaters and are willing to devour pretty much anything they can crawl onto: corn, soybeans, grain, forages and even weeds if a field does not have any crops growing on it.One of the more significant pests for Ohio’s soybean and corn growers, slugs can be easily overlooked in a field, said Andy Michel, an OSU Extension pest expert.Their eggs are slightly smaller than a BB and blend in well with the soil, Michel said. After hatching, they hide during the day, venturing out at night to seek food. As a result, a farmer may not be aware of the number of slugs in a field until after the damage is done.“I’ve seen holes in soybeans, gaps in rows and fields that needed to be replanted because of slugs,” Michel said.They do the most damage in late spring and early summer.“If you go out at dusk or after sunset with a flashlight, you might find them in the act,” Tilmon said.Besides holes in leaves, slugs can leave behind their trace, a trail of clear slime that shines when it dries.Like uninvited guests, slugs can be tough to get rid of. Growers should scout for slugs, particularly in areas where weeds thrive or where there are a lot of remnants of past years’ crops.A farmer with a serious slug problem can either till the soil to disrupt the slugs’ shelter or apply a pesticide with an active ingredient of either metaldehyde or chelated iron, Tilmon said. Insecticides do not kill them because slugs aren’t insects — they’re mollusks.One way to tell if a field has a slug problem is by leaving asphalt shingles in various parts of the field — ideally white ones that won’t attract the heat as much during the day — but will draw slugs if they’re around, Tilmon said. A grower can flip over the shingles and get an idea of how many slugs are hiding out in their field, then decide what to do about them.For more information, visit: read more

Fantastic four all set for Wimbledon

first_imgPost the slugfest on the French Open clay, the big four of tennis now carry their rivalry to the grass of Wimbledon. And tennis has never been so good with the fantastic four getting ready for another showdown.RAFAEL NADALRafael NadalThe Spaniard lifted his game at the right moment and that’s what helped him emerge triumphant at the French Open. He has the ability to transform his game to suit the grass and that’s why he is still the man to beat.World ranking: No 1. Rafa’s reign at the top of the pile would have come to an end had he not beaten Roger Federer at Roland Garros.Titles: The Spaniard equalled Swede Bjorn Borg’s six French Open titles to win his 10th Grand Slam and his 46th title.Prize money: So far Nadal has trousered a mind-boggling 25,823,025 pounds in his career.Best shot: He is an underrated volleyer and his serve has become a force but the monster forehand remains the most awesome weapon in tennis.Fitness rating: Nadal has had serious problems with his knees but his French Open displays show he is in peak shape.NOVAK DJOKOVICNovak DjokovicThe Serbian has never reached the final of Wimbledon or the French Open, yet he has improved so much in the past nine months and become so used to winning that you would put nothing past him.Withdrawing from this week’s AEGON Championships may not hurt him but the key will be whether he can move as phenomenally well on grass as he has been doing on clay and the hard courts.advertisement World ranking: No 2. The Serb’s amazing 43-match unbeaten run came to an end in Paris – and with it went his chance to take over at the top.Titles: Djokovic has won the Australian Open twice for his only two Grand Slam triumphs and taken 25 titles in total.Prize money: Still trailing Federer and Nadal but his career earnings are 16,155,281 pounds.Best shot: While he has turned his serve from a weakness to a strength in the past 12 months, his backhand down the line has been superb, and highly effective against the left-handed Nadal.Fitness rating: Sometimes ran out of steam in long matches but no longer an issue.ROGER FEDERERRoger FedererHis serve was outstanding at Roland Garros and will be even more effective at the Wimbledon. He may be at odd against Nadal on clay but let’s not write him off on grass, his favourite surface.But in the end it will be a question of how intensely he wants to win at SW19. World ranking: No 3. After years of unrivalled domination at the top of the rankings, Federer knows he is in a four-way fight to get there again.Titles: Holds the record for Grand Slams with 16, beating Pete Sampras. He has only won the French Open once, however. Also picked up 67 other titles.Prize money: Not surprisingly, the Swiss tops the charts on that front, too. He has won 39,183,323 pounds on the court.Best shot: There is nothing he cannot do and his serve combines power and accuracy, but the free-flowing forehand is as beautiful as it is deadly.Fitness rating: Has pulled out of the pre-Wimbledon event in Halle because of a groin strain.ANDY MURRAYAndy MurrayHis favourite court may be the hard ones but he is excellent on grass and usually plays well in front of the home crowd. Besides, he is going through a purple patch and will be looking to cash on it at Wimbledon.World ranking: No. 4. Murray started the year at four, dropped to five behind Robin Soderling, but is back knocking on the door of his rivals.Titles: Although he has reached the semi-finals in all four Slams, the big prize still eludes the British No. 1.Prize money: 9,840,956 pounds leave him in the shade of his three other rivals.Best shot: His hugely versatile backhand.Fitness rating: Has had a number of injuries, the latest of which was a sprained ankle at the French Open, but should be okay for the grass courts.last_img read more

Series tied as Ben Simmons triple-double lifts 76ers past Nets in Game 2

first_imgPhiladelphia 76ers’ Ben Simmons, right, of Australia, cups his hand to his ear after getting the ball from Brooklyn Nets’ D’Angelo Russell, left, during the second half in Game 2 of a first-round NBA basketball playoff series, Monday, April 15, 2019, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Chris Szagola)PHILADELPHIA— Ben Simmons got an earful from the Philly crowd.With the same 76ers fans Simmons put on blast for booing in the playoff opener now going wild in Game 2, Simmons cupped a hand to his right ear just like Allen Iverson’s signature move to spur the cheers even louder.ADVERTISEMENT UP NEXTThe series shifts to Barclays Center for Game 3 Thursday night and Game 4 Saturday.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next DA eyes importing ‘galunggong’ anew Ethel Booba twits Mocha over 2 toilets in one cubicle at SEA Games venue Embiid had 23 points and 10 rebounds, and Marjanovic scored 16.Embiid played ball boy and had the crowd laughing when he hopped off the bench to wipe off a basketball.The Sixers mopped the floor with the Nets.The Nets head home for Games 3 and 4 certainly grateful for a split and at least a half of good basketball before the Sixers picked them apart. Spencer Dinwiddie led the Nets with 19 points and D’Angelo Russell had 16.“I know the Barclays Center is going to be jumping in there,” Russell said. “The buzz around the city is what we needed.”TIP-INSNets: C Jared Dudley sat out with tightness in his right calf.76ers: Mutombo, who helped lead the Sixers to the 2001 finals, rang the ceremonial bell. Iverson moved from his courtside seat to a suite to sit with actor Jamie Foxx.PLENTY OF POINTSThe Sixers topped the 141 points scored in a 1967 playoff game against the San Francisco Warriors to set a team franchise record. The Sixers got a little something from everybody in this one.The Nets collapsed in the second half, outplayed and overmatched much as expected by pundits and bookmakers (they were 7.5-point Game 2 underdogs). The Sixers scored 51 points on 18 of 25 shooting and made all 11 free throws in the third.“We expect a haymaker,” Nets coach Kenny Atkinson said before the game. “We know it’s coming. They’re too good, too talented. too well coached. It’s coming. It’s going to be how we react.”Not well.Embiid shook off another game-time decision to play through tendinitis in his left knee and delivered after a sluggish Game 1. Embiid scored 13 points in the third as the Sixers raced to a 29-point lead.“Whenever I’m out there, I kind of forget about the pain and just try and do the right things,” Embiid said.On a minutes restriction, Embiid had some unexpected help from popular backup Boban Marjanovic. He scored 14 points in the first half (only Simmons had more with 16) and let the Sixers find a comfort level on offense with Embiid out for long stretches.“This is just the path we’re on with Joel,” coach Brett Brown said. “There is zero doubt he is our crown jewel.”Embiid was whistled for a flagrant foul for throwing an elbow at Jarrett Allen late in the half and the Sixers nursing a 65-64 lead.“I got him pretty good and I’m sorry about it,” Embiid said, laughing at the pseudo apology. The Sixers busted the game open with a 14-0 run to start the second half and then stretched the lead to 20 on a Simmons steal and fastbreak basket. With a packed house standing, Simmons got a massive ovation when he cupped his hand to his right ear just like Iverson did in his prime.“I was thinking about the boos from the last game,” Simmons said, smiling. “I have a lot of love for this city.”Iverson and former Sixers teammate Dikembe Mutombo attended the game and tossed T-shirts into the crowd.Had Mutombo played in this one, the Nets surely would have received one of his signature finger wags.“Everybody’s got to bring it,” Sixers All-Star center Joel Embiid said. “We need everybody.”ADVERTISEMENT MOST READ SEA Games hosting troubles anger Duterte Private companies step in to help SEA Games hosting Philippine Arena Interchange inauguratedcenter_img Cayetano: Senate, Drilon to be blamed for SEA Games mess Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. DeMarcus Cousins injures left quadriceps early in Game 2 LATEST STORIES Hontiveros presses for security audit of national power grid And he did it with Iverson rooting on the Sixers from courtside.Simmons had 18 points, 12 assists and 10 rebounds and the Philadelphia 76ers had an answer for the pesky Brooklyn Nets in a 145-123 win to even their Eastern Conference playoff series Monday night.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSPalace wants Cayetano’s PHISGOC Foundation probed over corruption chargesSPORTSSingapore latest to raise issue on SEA Games food, logistics“I was just trying to be me,” Simmons said.Simmons had a disastrous Game 1 , on the court (nine points) and from a PR perspective after he criticized fans for booing during a game the Sixers were never really in. He backtracked the next day at practice and never gave another 20,591 fans a chance to do anything but roar in approval in Game 2. Simmons flashed the All-Star form that helped lead the Sixers to 51 wins, and was aggressive from tipoff. He used his size and speed to attack the lane and scored 16 points in the half en route to his second career postseason triple-double. View comments Panelo: Duterte ‘angry’ with SEA Games hosting hassles Sports venues to be ready in time for SEA Games PLAY LIST 00:59Sports venues to be ready in time for SEA Games01:27Filipino athletes get grand send-off ahead of SEA Games00:50Trending Articles02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krausslast_img read more

a day agoPhelan: How Sir Alex ended my Man Utd career

first_imgPhelan: How Sir Alex ended my Man Utd careerby Paul Vegasa day agoSend to a friendShare the loveManchester United assistant coach Mike Phelan has revealed how his time as a player at Old Trafford was brought to an end.Phelan signed for the Old Trafford outfit from Norwich City in 1989 but his career with the club came to a frustrating end five years later. “He came up to me the Friday before the game on Saturday, last game of the season, and pulled me to one side at the training ground,” Phelan told The Athletic.”He said: ‘Enough’s enough, son. I’m letting you go’. ‘Letting me go where?’ ‘You’ve done terrific for me, but I’m going to bring in some of the young kids’.””This is when the Class of ’92 were around. I was older then, a little bit gobby.”‘Who?’ ‘I’m going to play Gary Neville’. ‘Gary Neville? What’s he got? Come on, Gaffer. You’re gonna play a kid?’ ‘Yeah’.”Phelan would go on to join West Brom, where he would spend 18 months before deciding to hang up his boots. TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

Videos: Florida Created Cool NBA Jam-Style Promos For Tuesday’s ’90s Night Game

first_imgThe Florida Gators mascot performing on the court during a basketball game.NEW ORLEANS, LA – MARCH 26: Albert, the mascot for the Florida Gators, performs during their game against the Butler Bulldogs in the Southeast regional final of the 2011 NCAA men’s basketball tournament at New Orleans Arena on March 26, 2011 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)Tomorrow’s Florida-Ole Miss basketball game is “’90s Night” in Gainesville, and the Gators have been posting really cool NBA Jam-style promo clips for the special event on their Instagram page. Between Dorian Finney-Smith jumping off the screen for a huge baseline slam, and Chris Chiozza catching literal fire, these “Gator Jam” videos are pretty awesome.The Gators and Rebels tip off at 9 p.m. We hope Florida has plans to roll a few more of these out before game time.last_img read more

Steelers Emmanuel Sanders Fined 50K For Faking Injury

Pittsburgh Steelers receiver Emmanuel Sanders was fined $50,000 by the NFL for faking an injury during a game in Cincinnati on Oct. 21.Sanders initially played coy in public comments about the incident, but in recent weeks has said the matter was being handled internally.Also fined on Friday by the league were Panthers safety Haruki Nakamura and Packers tight end Ryan Taylor, $21,000 each; Titans safety Michael Griffin, $20,000; Raiders cornerback Tyvon Branch, Panthers defensive end Greg Hardy, and Cardinals linebacker Quentin Groves, $15,750 each; Ravens LB Dannell Ellerbe, $10,000; Eagles quarterback Michael Vick, Colts cornerback Cassius Vaughn, and Steelers safety Will Allen, $7,875 apiece.During the Steelers-Bengals game, NBC announcers openly discussed their belief Sanders apparently was deliberately feigning an injury for the purpose of saving a timeout.Anderson said it found no evidence the Steelers, on an organization-wide basis, were instructing or condoning the faking of injuries for competitive purposes.“If I believed that to be the case, the discipline would be substantially more,” Anderson said. “Instead, it reflects the commissioner’s strong view that it is the responsibility of the club to insure that its players are familiar with and in compliance with the league’s competitive rules.”In an open letter to Sanders and Steelers general manager Kevin Colbert, Anderson cited video evidence to the contrary of Sanders’ contention that he was in severe pain while lying on the ground, before or after the play.Sanders sat out one play — a team trainer attended to him — and then returned to the game for the next play, a Pittsburgh punt. Anderson noted that Sanders outran his teammates and downed the ball.“The video of the play shows Sanders running swiftly and effortlessly toward the punted ball, and then leaving the field with no sign of discomfort,” Anderson wrote. “Sanders also played the rest of the game without difficulty.”The NFL sent out a memo to team general managers and coaches in September that said, “The Competition Committee deprecates feigning injuries.” The league reiterated it had the power to fine players, coaches or teams or even take away draft picks.This is the first punishment the league has handed out for faking an injury.When asked two days before his meeting with the league if he thought the NFL had a problem with faking, Sanders said “Not that I know of.” read more