Python 37 beta is available as the second generation Google App Engine

first_imgGoogle has announced the availability of Python 3.7 in beta on the App Engine standard environment. Developers can now easily run their web apps using up-to-date versions of popular languages, frameworks, and libraries, with Python being one of them. The Second Generation runtimes remove previous App Engine restrictions, giving developers the ability to write portable web apps and microservices. Now web apps can take full advantage of App Engine features such as auto-scaling, built-in security, and pay-per-use billing model. Python 3.7 was introduced as one of the new Second Generation runtimes at Cloud Next. Python 3.7 runtime brings developers up-to-date with the language community’s progress. As a Second Generation runtime, it enables a faster path to continued runtime updates. It also supports arbitrary third-party libraries, including those that rely on C code and native extensions. The new Python 3.7 runtime also supports the Google Cloud client libraries. Developers can integrate GCP services into their app, and run it on App Engine, Compute Engine or any other platform. LumApps, a Paris-based provider of enterprise Intranet software, has chosen App Engine to optimize for scale and developer productivity. Elie Mélois, CTO & Co-founder, LumApps says, “With the new Python 3.7 runtime on App Engine standard, we were able to deploy our apps very quickly, using libraries that we wanted such as scikit. App Engine helped us scale our platform from zero to over 2.5M users, from three developers to 40—all this with only one DevOps person! ” Check out the documentation to start using Python 3.7 today on the App Engine standard environment. Read Next Deploying Node.js apps on Google App Engine is now easyHosting on Google App EngineShould you move to Python 3? 7 Python experts’ opinionslast_img read more

Oaths distributed network telemetry collector Panoptes is now Open source

first_imgYesterday, the Oath network automation team open sourced Panoptes, a distributed system for collecting, enriching and distributing network telemetry. This pluggable, distributed and high-performance data collection system supports multiple polling formats, including SNMP and vendor-specific APIs. It also supports emerging streaming telemetry standards including gNMI. Panoptes is written primarily in Python. It leverages multiple open-source technologies to provide the most value for the least development effort. Panoptes Architecture Source: Yahoo Developers The architecture is designed to enable easy data distribution and integration with other systems. The plugin to push metrics into InfluxDB allows Panoptes to evolve with industry standards. Teams can quickly set up a fully-featured monitoring environment because of the combination of Grafana and the InfluxData ecosystem. There were multiple issues inherent in legacy polling systems, including overpolling due to multiple point solutions for metrics, a lack of data normalization, consistent data enrichment and integration with infrastructure discovery systems. Panoptes aims to overcome all these issues.Check scheduling is accomplished using Celery, which is a horizontally scalable, open-source scheduler that utilizes a Redis data store. Panoptes ships with a simple, CSV-based discovery system. It can be integrated with a CMDB. From there, Panoptes will manage the task of scheduling polling for the desired devices. Users can also develop custom discovery plugins to integrate with their CMDB and other device inventory data sources. Vendors are moving towards a more streamlined model of telemetry. Panoptes’ flexible architecture will minimize the effort required to adopt these new protocols. The metric bus at the center of the model is implemented on Kafka. All data plane transactions flow across this bus. Discovery plugins publish devices to the bus and polling plugins publish metrics to the bus. Similarly, numerous clients read the data off of the bus for additional processing and forwarding. This architecture enables easy data distribution and integration with other systems. The team at Oath has deployed Panoptes in a tiered, federated model. They have developed numerous custom applications on the platform, including a load balancer monitor, a BGP session monitor, and a topology discovery application. All this was done at a reduced cost, thanks to Panoptes. This open-source release is packaged for easy deployment into any Linux-based environment and available on Github. You can head over to Yahoo Developer Network for deeper insights into this news. Read Next Performing Vehicle Telemetry job analysis with Azure Stream Analytics tools Anaconda 5.3.0 released, takes advantage of Python’s Speed and feature improvements Arm releases free Cortex-M processor cores for FPGAs, includes measures to combat FOSSi threatlast_img read more

10000 rooms at Universal Orlando if new megahotel gets goahead

first_img Share ORLANDO — Universal Orlando plans to build a 4,000-room mega-hotel as part of its new Universal’s Volcano Bay water park. Universal Orlando will already have 6,200 on-site rooms once its new Aventura hotel opens in summer 2018.Reports from multiple Florida media sources say Universal Orlando has filed plans with the city of Orlando that include a large hotel split in two across Universal Boulevard, on the old Wet ‘n Wild site which closed on Dec. 31, 2016.Universal’s Volcano Bay is scheduled to open May 25, 2017 with 18 attractions in four themed areas on 28 “fully immersive” acres, says Universal Orlando. The park is centered around the 200-foot-tall volcano Krakatau.Universal Orlando will have six on-property resorts when Universal’s Aventura Hotel, currently under construction, opens in summer 2018. Aventura is being positioned as an “affordable-chic” resort experience. The 16-storey glass tower will consist of 600 guest rooms, including 13 kids’ suites.More news:  Sunwing offers ultimate package deal ahead of YXU flights to SNU, PUJAventura will neighbor Loews Sapphire Falls Resort and will be steps away from Universal Studios Florida, Universal’s Islands of Adventure and Universal’s Volcano Bay. Aventura will bring the total number of on-site hotel rooms at Universal Orlando Resort to 6,200 in 2018 when combined with the 400-room expansion of Universal’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort. Tags: Universal Studios Thursday, March 23, 2017 Posted bycenter_img 10,000 rooms at Universal Orlando if new mega-hotel gets go-ahead Travelweek Group << Previous PostNext Post >>last_img read more

Cubana flight crashes on takeoff from Havana

first_img HAVANA — A Boeing 737 operated by state airline Cubana has crashed on takeoff from Jose Marti International Airport in Havana with 104 people on board.State television and websites said the plane was headed to the eastern city of Holguin and crashed between the airport in southern Havana and the nearby town of Santiago de Las Vegas.The plane lay in a farm field and appeared heavily damaged and burnt, with firefighters spraying water on its smouldering remains.Government officials including President Miguel Diaz-Canel rushed to the site, along with a large number of emergency medical workers and ambulances. Residents of the rural area said they had seen some survivors being taken away in ambulances.A military officer who declined to provide his name to reporters says there appear to have been three survivors in critical condition from the Cubana flight. Other officials have declined to confirm that.The plane was rented by Cubana, which has taken many of its aging planes out of service in recent months due to mechanical problems. Tags: Cubana, Plane Crash By: The Associated Press Share Friday, May 18, 2018 Cubana flight crashes on takeoff from Havana << Previous PostNext Post >>last_img read more

Swoop adds three new routes for the summer season

first_img<< Previous PostNext Post >> Swoop adds three new routes for the summer season Travelweek Group Posted by Tags: Airlines, Swoopcenter_img Share CALGARY — Three of Swoop’s new summer routes have taken off.Day-long celebrations took place at Halifax Stanfield Airport (YHZ) where service kicks off to London, ON. Also new is service between Winnipeg and Kelowna, and London, ON to Abbotsford, B.C.“Not only does today highlight three new routes but it is also the induction of Kelowna into our network. We are welcoming many first-time Swoop travellers this month and are encouraged by research showing that more than 94% of those who try us would fly Swoop again,” said Swoop president Steven Greenway, referencing the airline’s 2019 survey of close to 24,000 participants.Winnipeg-Kelowna departs Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, with one-way fares starting at $119. London-Abbotsford runs daily with one-way fares starting at $129, while London-Halifax also runs 6x weekly (except Saturdays) with one-ways fares starting at $119.To round out the summer schedule, Swoop will also launch two additional routes between Edmonton and Orlando on June 1, and between Kelowna and Las Vegas on June 27.More news:  TRAVELSAVERS welcomes Julie Virgilio to the teamFlights are now available for booking through to Oct. 26. Monday, May 27, 2019 last_img read more

30 percent of Costa Rica coffee harvest could be lost due to

first_imgA rust fungus commonly known as“roya” that already has caused losses of more than $100 million in Nicaragua could also affect coffee production in Costa Rica, the Agriculture and Livestock Ministry (MAG) warned this week.MAG experts estimate that 30 percent of the local coffee harvest could be lost due to the fungus.The most affected area is Pérez Zeledón, a southern region of San José, where 7,000 hectares are infected, followed by Coto Brus (south of Puntarenas) with 3,000 hectares, the Central Valley (500 hectares), the West Valley (118 hectares), Los Santos (southeast of the capital, 50 hectares) and Turrialba (east of Cartago, 40 hectares).Rust fungus (Hemileia vastratrix) affects the leaves of a coffee bush until it completely dries the plant. This fungus is spread by contact from one leaf to another. The fungus does not affect the quality of the coffee but could cause coffee prices to increase.According to MAG, the situation is so alarming that they are studying the possibility of declaring an emergency.Coffee producers are very concerned about the situation and will be holding meetings with MAG officials this week to seek solutions. Facebook Comments No related posts.last_img read more

Syria okays UN chemical weapons probe US weighs military action

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DAMASCUS, Syria – United Nations experts on Monday will start investigating the site of an alleged Syrian chemical weapons attack after a go-ahead from Damascus, as a skeptical Washington said Syria’s acceptance had come too late.Meanwhile, British Foreign Secretary William Hague on Sunday warned that any evidence of a chemical attack by the Syrian may regime may have already been destroyed.“The fact is that much of the evidence could have been destroyed by that artillery bombardment,” he cautioned during a press conference after Damascus gave its green light to a mission by U.N. inspectors.In an escalation of a showdown over a suspected chemical weapons attack near Damascus last week, the United States pointed the finger of blame at President Bashar al-Assad’s regime as it weighed military action.“There is very little doubt at this point that a chemical weapon was used by the Syrian regime against civilians in this incident,” based on the reported number of victims and their symptoms, as well as U.S. and other foreign intelligence, one official in Washington told AFP.Syria’s opposition says more than 1,300 people died when regime forces unleashed chemical weapons against rebel-held towns east and southwest of Damascus on Aug. 21, while Doctors Without Borders said 355 people had died of “neurotoxic” symptoms.Damascus has strongly denied it carried out such an attack, instead blaming the rebels.French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius told a Jerusalem press conference on Sunday there was “no doubt” the Damascus regime was behind the suspected attack.“From the moment the substance of the facts is established incontestably (by the U.N. inspectors), there will necessarily be a strong response,” he added.Moscow bluntly warned the West that military action against the Syrian regime would be a “tragic mistake.”“We strongly urge those who, by attempting to impose their own results on the U.N. experts, are raising the possibility of a military operation in Syria to use their common sense and refrain from committing a tragic mistake,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Alexander Kasevich’s said in a statement.Syria’s Foreign Ministry said that visiting U.N. disarmament envoy Angela Kane struck the accord with the Syrian government on Sunday for a probe.The United Nations said in a statement the investigation would begin as early as Monday.U.S. officials said President Barack Obama, who held crisis talks Saturday with top security aides, would make an “informed decision” about how to respond to an “indiscriminate” chemical weapons attack.Washington had noted that Syria had offered to let U.N. inspectors view the site of the alleged attack, but suggested it was too little, too late, said one official, speaking on condition of anonymity.“At this juncture, the belated decision by the regime to grant access to the U.N. team is too late to be credible, including because the evidence available has been significantly corrupted as a result of the regime’s persistent shelling and other intentional actions over the last five days,” the official said.If confirmed, the attack would mark the deadliest use of chemical agents since late Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein gassed Iranian troops and Kurdish rebels in the 1980s.U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said earlier Sunday the U.S. military was “prepared to exercise whatever option” against Syria but intelligence was still being evaluated.On a visit to Malaysia, Hagel said the U.S. Defense Department had prepared “options for all contingencies” at Obama’s request.On Saturday, Obama held a rare meeting with his top aides and discussed Syria by phone with British Prime Minister David Cameron.Cameron’s office said they two leaders agreed the use of chemical weapons would “merit a serious response” – echoing French calls.Obama had said a year ago that the use of chemical weapons by Assad’s forces was a “red line” that could trigger Western intervention.On Sunday, a strident warning came from Washington’s arch-foe Iran.“If the United States crosses this red line, there will be harsh consequences for the White House,” Armed Forces Deputy Chief of Staff Massoud Jazayeri said, without elaborating.The Arab League is to meet on Tuesday to discuss the alleged use of chemical weapons in Syria, the bloc’s deputy chief Ahmed Ben Helli said.Doctors Without Borders (MSF) has said about 3,600 patients displaying “neurotoxic symptoms” had flooded into three Syrian hospitals on the day of the alleged attacks, and 355 of them died.“Medical staff working in these facilities provided detailed information to MSF doctors regarding large numbers of patients arriving with symptoms including convulsions, excess saliva, pinpoint pupils, blurred vision and respiratory distress,” said MSF operations director Bart Janssens.MSF president Mego Terzian told AFP however that “scientific” proof is still lacking.In Israel, President Shimon Peres called for international efforts to “take out” chemical weapons in Syria as Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Israel would pull the “trigger” if needed to protect its people.More than 100,000 people have been killed in Syria since an uprising against Assad’s rule flared in March 2011, the U.N. says.In the latest eruption of violence, the governor of Hama province in central Syria was killed in a car bombing on Sunday, state television reported, in an attack it blamed on rebels. 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Final search underway for US hiker missing in Corcovado National Park

first_img Facebook Comments This story is developing. If you have information on the case please contact Tico Times reporter Lindsay Fendt at lfendt@ticotimes.net.A Red Cross rescue team is combing the jungles of Corcovado National Park in a final search Monday for missing U.S. hiker Cody Roman Dial. 27-year-old Cody Roman Dial has been missing in Corcovado National Park since July 22. (Via Facebook)Dial, a 27-year-old Alaska native, was last seen by locals on July 22 entering a southeast section of the park near the Río Tigre, an area closed to tourists. Dial, the son of a well-known Alaskan adventurer whose name also is Roman Dial, is an experienced backcountry hiker who often took trips off-trail.  He last emailed his father on July 10, and mentioned that he was planning a hike through the park. Since last February, guides have been required for hikers to enter Corcovado – located on the Osa Peninsula in southern Costa Rica – and with no record of Dial’s entry into the park, officials believe he went in alone through an unauthorized entrance.Recommended: Red Cross officials suspect missing hiker may be inside gold mining tunnelsRed Cross search-and-rescue teams and helicopters from the country’s Aerial Vigilance Service have searched all of Dial’s possible routes through the park, but have turned up no sign. Dial’s father joined Red Cross officials on several of the searches.“Today is the last search we will be doing,” Gilberth Doundi, one of the mission‘s search-and-rescue coordinators told The Tico Times. “After this we will need to make a decision about what to do next.”Dial’s father declined to comment for this story.If you have information regarding Dial’s disappearance or believe you have seen him, contact the Red Cross in Puerto Jiménez at 2735-5109. Dial — pictured above — has brown hair, is approximately 5′ 8″ and weighs approximately 140 pounds. Related posts:US man reported missing in Costa Rica’s rugged Corcovado National Park Search continues in Costa Rica’s Corcovado National Park for missing US hiker Costa Rican gov’t and Red Cross suspend search for US hiker believed missing in Corcovado Nat’l Park Father continues search for Alaska hiker, believed missing in Costa Rica’s Corcovado National Parklast_img read more

Afternoon thunderstorm floods downtown San José

first_imgSan José centro, avenida 2 calle 9, vía totalmente inundada, vehículos no pueden pasar. @dgptdirector pic.twitter.com/pMKIzFsKs0— Ruta Alterna (@rutaalterna) September 25, 2015 Related posts:Costa Rican capital hit by heavy rains, flash floods PHOTOS: President Luis Guillermo Solís visits areas affected by floods in Costa Rica’s Limón province El Niño heat expected to last through May Increased rainfall expected over Costa Rica this week Looks like the rain finally showed up. A torrential downpour Friday afternoon left several blocks of downtown San José underwater.The flood on Second Avenue in front of Barrio Chino’s iconic friendship gate trapped taxis and buses as water lapped at the fenders of smaller cars. Business owners tried in vain to bail out their shops or construct makeshift walls to keep the water out.https://vine.co/v/exe0OzZUFbbMarcelo Solano, director of the San José Municipal Police and acting head of city Public Services, told The Tico Times that the city did not yet know the exact cause of Friday’s flooding but said that there were likely several causes, from trash blocking drains to the natural low point in the city where Barrio Chino lies between Parque Morazán and Plaza Víquez.Solano said that flooding has become a regular concern for the businesses and residents of Barrio Chino for the last year. After a new sewer in Los Yoses was completed the system has increased the amount of water flowing into the rest of the sewer system, which meets under Barrio Chino, he said. The result has been occasional flooding along the walking boulevard, but Friday’s flooding was extreme.“The rains are short but they’re intense,” Solano said, “We’re taking it seriously.” He added that Mayor Sandra García Pérez had called a meeting of city engineers the previous week asking for solutions to the flooding problem.Solano said that besides Barrio Chino there were also reports of flooding in Los Olivos, San Sebastián and Hatillo 2.The flooding was intense but Solano said the only thing to do was wait for it to drain naturally. Roughly an hour after the worst of the flooding, around 3:00 p.m., the water had already fallen considerably. Facebook Commentslast_img read more

Meatless Monday initiative launches in Costa Rica

first_imgCosta Rica is officially joining the global initiative known as “Meatless Monday,” or Lunes sin Carne, meant to reduce meat consumption among the population.The local office of the animal rights group Humane Society International (HSI) launched the campaign on Earth Day. The initiative began in the U.S. in 2003 aimed at benefiting public health, the environment and animal welfare. More than 35 countries already participate in Meatless Monday.According to HSI, animal production for human consumption is one of the main contributors to climate change. One-fourth of Costa Rica’s greenhouse gas emissions comes from the livestock sector.Globally, methane from farting and belching cows accounts for 40 percent of farming’s heat-trapping emissions.Viviana Bruno, who manages Humane Society International’s Farm Animals Program said joining the initiative is voluntary and that the group is not asking restaurants or companies to eliminate dishes from their menus or stop serving meat. Campaign participants will display posters like this one. (Via HSI/Costa Rica)“We are just asking them to add a meatless option for customers who visit them on Mondays, and to inform them about those options,” Bruno said.Five restaurants have already joined the Meatless Monday initiative and HSI expects the number to increase.The group will promote the campaign mostly on social media and through direct contact with restaurants and bars, but also among universities, schools, and other institutions.HSI will provide participating locales with posters stating “Aquí celebramos Lunes sin Carne” (Here we celebrate Meatless Monday) and waiters will display the message on pins.The campaign’s Facebook profile also features nutrition info, tips, environmental facts and even vegetarian and vegan recipes.Mixed reactionsThe president of the Costa Rican Cattle Corporation (CORFOGA), Leonardo Luconi, said local farming practices are much less damaging than in many other countries. Therefore, he said, a local Meatless Monday campaign seems unnecessary for environmental purposes.He said the campaign could negatively affect cattle farmers, thousands of jobs and even public health.Luconi said those responsible for promoting the campaign here are using facts and figures about methane emitted by ruminant animals that do not apply for Costa Rica.“We need to be clear about two facts: our animals are fed with grass, not grains like in many other countries, including the U.S.,” he said. He added that “recent studies demonstrate that people who avoid amino acids from animal protein may suffer, among other effects, from lower brain development.”The chamber leader said local joint research from the Agriculture and Livestock Ministry’s National Institute for Agricultural Innovation (INTA) and the National Meteorological Institute (IMN) conducted on more than 200 farms in the past two years found that “all of them are either carbon neutral or carbon positive.”Luconi said measurements taken during that research found that actions being implemented to mitigate emissions on local farms go beyond feeding practices.“Farmers here have good practices, they are mostly using living fences, they are protecting and expanding their forests and their pasture areas, and all those areas are currently fixating carbon,” he said.There are just over 36,000 cattle farms in Costa Rica and according to CORFOGA, farmers own some 25 percent of forested areas in the country.Records from the Agriculture and Livestock Ministry state that there are currently 1.8 million hectares of land being used in milk and meat production.Livestock production accounts for 40 percent of emissions in the farming sector and 24 percent of Costa Rica’s greenhouse gas emissions, according to the Environment Ministry.However, Luconi said the INTA/IMN study showed that farms are mitigating more greenhouse gas emissions than they are producing.He also said government officials often conduct carbon fixation measurements on farms whose lands are being used both for cattle production and crops, “but in their final report they classify those farms only as agricultural lands,” Luconi said.President of the Costa Rican Chamber of Restaurants Jorge Figueroa said Friday that the group supports the Meatless Monday initiative as long as it is not mandatory, as their associates mostly support customers’ freedom of choice.Figueroa said that if people here want to avoid meat one day a week then restaurants just need to be creative and offer options for them.“This could be actually a good thing even for steakhouses as they could also join the iniciative and promote dishes for vegetarian or vegan people,” he said.He also said the campaign would be positive in terms of promoting the production and consumption of vegetables and fruit as well as some products that are not traditionally consumed here, thereby increasing the market for them.“We believe this can actually be seen even as a good business opportunity for many local producers,” Figueroa said.Watch a spot of the Meatless Monday campaign in Costa Rica (in Spanish): Related posts:Vegetables grown near erupting Turrialba called safe to eat Environment Ministry officials report increased damage of wildfires inside protected areas Number of obese Ticos has almost quadrupled in four decades Environment officials move Kivú the lion to a new home Facebook Commentslast_img read more

Second Guatemalan migrant child dies in US custody

first_imgAnother child dies under this Administration’s watch. Such a devastating story to hear on Christmas Day. My heart is with the family of this little boy who lost their son. https://t.co/6i5eiyGTad— Rep. Marc Veasey (@RepVeasey) December 25, 2018President Donald Trump has made hardline immigration policies a central plank of his presidency, drawing fire from critics who accuse him of demonizing migrants for political gain.He is locked in a battle with Congress over funding for his planned border wall, which he claims will stem migration from Latin American countries plagued by gang violence and poverty.“Heartbroken to hear of a second child’s death in CBP custody,” tweeted Nydia Velazquez, a Democratic congresswoman from New York.“We must demand accountability, find answers and put an end to this Administration’s hateful, dangerous anti-immigrant policies.”Heartbroken to hear of a second child’s death in CBP custody. We must demand accountability, find answers and put an end to this Administration’s hateful, dangerous anti-immigrant policies.https://t.co/zBDii5VNu9— Rep. Nydia Velazquez (@NydiaVelazquez) December 25, 2018 An 8-year-old migrant from Guatemala died in government custody on Tuesday, U.S. Customs and Border Protection said, the second child fatality in U.S. detention this month.The boy, who was with his apprehended father, had been transferred to a New Mexico medical center showing signs of sickness on Monday, the agency said.Staff diagnosed him with a cold but later discovered a fever. He was released midday, given prescriptions for ibuprofen and the amoxicillin antibiotic.The child was later transferred back to the hospital after showing signs of nausea and vomiting, dying just after midnight.The CBP said it had not established the cause of death but would “ensure an independent and thorough review of the circumstances.”The news triggered outrage on social media, days after the body of a Guatemalan migrant girl who died in similar circumstances was returned home.Her death reignited debate in the United States over immigration policy and the treatment of migrants.“Another child dies under this Administration’s watch,” tweeted Democratic Congressman Marc Veasey of Texas.“Such a devastating story to hear on Christmas Day.” Thanks for reading The Tico Times. We strive to keep you up to date about everything that’s been happening in Costa Rica. We work hard to keep our reporting independent and groundbreaking, but we need your help. The Tico Times is partly funded by you and every little bit helps. If all our readers chipped in a buck a month we’d be set for years. Support the Tico Times Facebook Commentscenter_img Related posts:Landmark sexual slavery case in Guatemala examines use of rape as weapon of war Following Trump, Guatemala begins process to move embassy to Jerusalem Former Guatemalan dictator Efraín Ríos Montt dies at 91 Toll rises in Guatemala volcano as more bodies recoveredlast_img read more

Argentines plan to shoot gulls to save the whales

first_img“At year’s end, we’re going to inaugurate garbage-separation plants,” Maza said. “All the garbage in the protected Peninsula Valdes area that isn’t recyclable will be properly disposed of, which will enable us to mitigate the open-air garbage dumps.”Schvartzman said that if humans don’t solve the problem quickly, the whales will simply stop coming.(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Whales also are changing their behavior in response: Instead of breaching the water and dramatically displaying their tails, they rise just barely enough to breathe through their blow-holes before descending to safety, Bertellotti said.Bertellotti’s answer: Shoot the gulls that display this behavior with air rifles and hunting guns, and recover each downed bird before they are eaten along with the ammunition, causing still more damage to marine life. His “100-day Whale-Gull Action Plan” was approved by the government of Chubut, and provincial officials came out Tuesday in defense of it.“We are preparing a pilot plan that seeks to stop the damage from the gulls that pick at the flesh of the whales, because this is putting at risk the resource. It will be a minimal intervention to protect the life of the southern right whale and thus provide a response to the complaints of the sightseeing businesses that operate in the place,” Gov. Martin Buzzi posted on his Facebook page.Whale-watching is big business for Chubut. Southern right whales have recovered to about 8 percent of their original population since becoming a protected species worldwide, and hundreds come to the relatively calm and warm waters of the gulf formed by the Valdez Peninsula to give birth and raise their newborns each July to December. Top Stories Seeing them surface from nearby boats can be a magical experience, and gull attacks were rare until about eight years ago, said Milko Schvartzman, who coordinates the oceans campaign for Greenpeace in Latin America.But more gulls have caught on, and their population has boomed to the point where whales are attacked at least every fourth time they surface, he said.Now the tourists are suffering along with the whales. “It’s not so pleasant anymore,” Schvartzman said.Environmentalists say the only way to effectively reduce the seagull population is to deny the birds food by closing open-air garbage dumps around the gulf and stopping people from dumping fish parts. Activists have been lobbying Chubut for many years to develop plans to reduce, recycle and properly contain garbage and strictly regulate fishing, but politicians have resisted, Schvartzman said.Chubut’s environmental minister, Eduardo Maza, blamed the problem on previous governments, and said the province is now working on permanent solutions. Shooting the gulls “is surely not the most pleasant measure, but it’s necessary to do something to control a situation that has been growing after many years of inaction,” Maza said. Arizona families, Arizona farms: working to produce high-quality milk Comments   Share   The vital role family plays in society Environmentalists say the plan is misguided and that humans are the real problem, creating so much garbage that the gull population has exploded.Both sides agree that the gull attacks in one of the whales’ prime birthing grounds is not only threatening the marine mammals, but the region’s tourism industry as well, by turning whale-watching from a magical experience into something sad and gruesome.Seagulls around the city of Puerto Madryn discovered about a decade ago that by pecking at the whales as they come up for air, they can create open wounds. Then, each time the whales surface, it’s dinner time: Gulls swoop down and dig in, cutting away skin and blubber with their beaks and claws.The problem has only grown more severe since then as more gulls caught on and the bird population exploded due to easy access to human detritus _ not only open-air garbage heaps but fish parts as well, dumped directly into the water by fishermen and a seafood packing plant.“It’s not just that the gulls are attacking the whales, but that they’re feeding from them, and this way of feeding is a habit that is growing and becoming more frequent,” said Marcelo Bertellotti, who works for the National Patagonia Center, a government-sponsored conservation agency. “It really worries us because the damage they’re doing to the whales is multiplying, especially to infant whales that are born in these waters.” Bottoms up! Enjoy a cold one for International Beer Day Associated PressBUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) – What began as bizarre bird behavior has turned into something out of a horror film for threatened whales in Argentina, where seagulls have learned that pecking at the whales’ backs can get them a regular seafood dinner.Seagull attacks on southern right whales have become so common now that authorities are planning to shoot the gulls in hopes of reducing their population. Sponsored Stories Mary Coyle ice cream to reopen in central Phoenix Construction begins on Chandler hospital expansion project Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement New Year’s resolution: don’t spend another year in a kitchen you don’t likelast_img read more

UK foreign secretary Dont just Tweet lets meet

first_imgOften seen as serious in person, Hague is an engaging figure online and known to trade messages and jokes with fellow foreign ministers.The foreign ministry confirmed those selected to meet Hague may be subject to security checks.(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Sponsored Stories Comments   Share   Get a lawn your neighbor will be jealous of How men can have a healthy 2019 Early signs of cataracts in your parents and how to help Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvementcenter_img Bottoms up! Enjoy a cold one for International Beer Day LONDON (AP) – He’s making it a very social network. Britain’s Foreign Secretary William Hague says he will meet with five of his followers on Twitter to discuss global issues and give them a tour of his ministry.Hague, also an avid user of Facebook, said Friday that he would meet with a group at London’s Foreign Office next month.In a message posted to his Twitter account, Hague asked followers to send their thoughts on British foreign policy priorities and global affairs. He’ll use those responses to pick who will be invited for talks. Top Stories Mary Coyle ice cream to reopen in central Phoenix Construction begins on Chandler hospital expansion projectlast_img read more

Syriarelated terror arrest at Heathrow

first_img Comments   Share   LONDON (AP) – British police say a man has been arrested at London’s Heathrow Airport as part of an investigation into travel to Syria in support of alleged terrorist activity.Scotland Yard said the 24-year-old, whose name and nationality were not provided, was taken into custody by counterterrorism officers after immigration officials stopped him once he arrived on a flight from Bahrain Monday morning.Police said the man was arrested on suspicion of the “commission, preparation or instigation of acts of terrorism” and is being questioned at a south London police station. Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement The vital role family plays in society Bottoms up! Enjoy a cold one for International Beer Day Top Stories Sponsored Stories center_img 4 ways to protect your company from cyber breaches One man previously arrested in connection with the same investigation was charged in October with the kidnapping of two Western journalists in Syria.(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) 5 ways to recognize low testosterone Mary Coyle ice cream to reopen in central Phoenix Construction begins on Chandler hospital expansion projectlast_img read more

Panetta in Cambodia for talks on USAsia security

first_img 5 greatest Kentucky Derby finishes Sponsored Stories Comments   Share   Top Stories Bottoms up! Enjoy a cold one for International Beer Day Mary Coyle ice cream to reopen in central Phoenix Top holiday drink recipescenter_img Panetta’s talks at a luxury hotel were not expected to yield major new defense initiatives but reflected Obama administration interest in deepening security ties across the region.The increased U.S. focus on Asia will be long-lasting and will include economic and diplomatic efforts in addition to security cooperation, Panetta said.He was in Bangkok on Thursday to sign a statement updating U.S.-Thai security relations. Panetta also announced a review of ethics training among the U.S. military officer corps.Cambodia was the final stop on Panetta’s weeklong Asia-Pacific tour, which began in Australia.He was heading back to Washington where an unfolding sex scandal involving former CIA Director David Petraeus, a much honored retired general, and Gen. John Allen, who leads the U.S. war effort in Afghanistan, is dominating much of the news.(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) AP National Security WriterSIEM REAP, Cambodia (AP) – Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said Friday that the U.S. would participate in three Southeast Asian military exercises next year.Panetta was in Cambodia for talks with his counterparts from 10 Southeast Asian nations in advance of President Barack Obama’s visit next week.The defense chief said the exercises will be a humanitarian and disaster relief exercise hosted by Brunei; a counterterrorism exercise co-sponsored by the US and Indonesia; and a maritime security exercise led by Malaysia and Australia. Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement Arizona families, Arizona farms: A legacy of tradition embracing animal care and comfort through modern technology Construction begins on Chandler hospital expansion projectlast_img read more

Lebanese man convicted of storing bomb materials

first_img New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies The court convicted and sentenced Hussein to two years and eight months in prison for illegal possession of the ammonium nitrate, which is a banned substance under Thailand’s Weapons Act. It did not convict him for possession of the fertilizer, which is not an illegal substance. He will serve about one more year of the term due to time already spent behind bars.The United States welcomed the verdict, and said the large quantity of explosive uncovered by Thai authorities demonstrated the global reach of Hezbollah.But after the verdict, the 49-year-old Hussein _ his legs in chains _ told reporters he was “happy” with the ruling. His lawyer said they plan to appeal.Hussein has claimed innocence in the case and denies any links to Hezbollah. He has said he was probably framed by Israel’s Mossad spy agency.In an interview last year with a Swedish newspaper, Hussein said that he was involved in a business that exported a variety of goods from Thailand to other countries, including Lebanon. The products included fans, copy machine paper and frozen gel packs used for pain relief, he said.“There is ammonium in these packs. That’s all there is to it. We never traded with fertilizer. It must have been placed there by someone, probably Mossad,” Hussein said told Aftonbladet newspaper. In its verdict, the court said Hussein’s claims “did not hold weight” because he showed no proof of any trading transactions that a normal business would have.“The defendant was involved in the process of transferring, packing and handling the materials … so it is considered that he was the owner of the material,” the judges said in their verdict.Hussein said he moved to Sweden in 1989 and became a Swedish citizen five years later. He said he worked in the country as a hairdresser before moving back to Lebanon in 2005.His arrest in Thailand was linked to warnings by the United States and Israel of a possible terror threat in Bangkok, coming at a time of heightened tension over U.S. and Israeli responses to the prospect that Iran was moving ahead with its nuclear program.In Washington, State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf praised Thai law enforcers for disrupting a “potentially deadly plot which could have killed or injured innocent civilians.” She said Hezbollah had been storing thousands of pounds of explosive material in the warehouse, enough for multiple attacks.“Today’s verdict illustrates once again, the global reach of Hezbollah’s terrorist arm and demonstrates why countries around the world need to remain vigilant about their activities,” Harf told reporters. Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement BANGKOK (AP) – A Thai court on Wednesday convicted a Lebanese man with alleged links to Hezbollah militants for illegal possession of bomb-making materials that he was storing in a warehouse outside Bangkok.Atris Hussein, who also holds Swedish nationality, was arrested Jan 12, 2012, at Bangkok’s main airport after a tip-off from Israeli police, who claimed he was going to stage a terrorist attack in Thailand. After being questioned, Hussein led police to a warehouse with hundreds of boxes containing more than 2,800 kilograms (6,200 pounds) of liquid ammonium nitrate and 8,800 pounds (4,000 kilograms) of urea fertilizer, both of which can be used to make explosives. Top Stories Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility Police testified that they had received a tip-off from Israeli authorities that Hussein had suspected links to pro-Iranian Hezbollah militants and was preparing to stage a terrorist attack at a key location in Thailand.Thai police have said Hussein’s case was unrelated to a botched bomb plot in Bangkok that was exposed on Feb. 14, 2012, shortly after his arrest. In that case, which also wrapped up recently, an accidental explosion blew apart a Bangkok home where a group of Iranians were staying.A court last month sentenced one of the Iranians to life in prison and his compatriot to 15 years in jail for possession of illegal explosives and other charges for the plot that officials say was aimed at Israeli diplomats in Bangkok.____Associated Press writer Matthew Pennington in Washington contributed to this report.(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)center_img Sponsored Stories Comments   Share   Top ways to honor our heroes on Veterans Day 4 ways to protect your company from cyber breaches Patients with chronic pain give advice Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving soberlast_img read more

As ties warm EU parliament delegation visits Iran

first_imgTEHRAN, Iran (AP) – A European Parliament delegation has arrived in Iran, the first visit to Tehran by the EU’s legislative institution in more than six years.Iran’s official IRNA news agency said Friday the eight-member delegation will stay until Wednesday. The delegation will meet Iranian lawmakers and officials, as well as dissident filmmaker Jafar Panahi and human rights lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh who jointly won the European Parliament’s prestigious Sakharov prize in 2012. New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies 3 international destinations to visit in 2019 Four benefits of having a wireless security system Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving sober Top Stories Comments   Share   center_img The visit is a sign of warming ties in the wake of an interim deal reached in November in Geneva between the Islamic Republic and six world powers to ease some sanctions on Iran for a series of nuclear concessions.The world powers fear Iran’s goal is to produce atomic weapons. Tehran says its program is solely for peaceful purposes.(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Sponsored Stories Check your body, save your life Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facilitylast_img read more

Residents clean up after typhoon pelts Guam with winds rain

first_imgCharles Henry, 28, Clayton Faubion, 25, Charles Harstad, 23, and Jamal Arurag, 19, observe barreling waves behind the University of Guam Marine Lab on the island’s eastern coast during a powerful Pacific typhoon on Friday, May 15, 2015. The National Weather Service said the center of Typhoon Dolphin had passed through a 50-mile-wide channel between Guam and the island of Rota. (AP Photo/Grace Garces Bordallo) Verde said FEMA will do a joint assessment with the government of Guam on damage from the typhoon. The assessment will be compiled to determine if any federal funding will be needed.Gov. Eddie Calvo’s spokeswoman, Oyaol Ngirairikl, said the government was still in its initial stages of assessing damage.Navy Lt. Tim Gorman, spokesman for Joint Region Marianas, said he lost power about 8 p.m. Friday but the electricity came back on at noon.“All things considered, it could have been a lot worse,” he said.About 40 percent of the island’s 50,000 electric utility customers were still without power in the early afternoon, said Heidi Ballendorf, a spokeswoman for Guam’s power and water utilities. Service had yet to be restored to about 12 percent of water customers.A 57-year-old homeless man said he rode out the storm on the grounds of a strip mall in the capital of Hagatna. Frank Reyes said the storm was the worst he’s experienced since becoming homeless two years ago.“This one was the strongest so far. This one kind of scared me,” Reyes said.Hagatna resident Roberta Perez, 57, said she was surprised the road in front of her house didn’t flood. She prepared for the storm by doing work inside and outside her house. Top Stories “I secured all my personal belongings, and I cut my mango tree down because that saves me from a lot of work,” Perez said. But her neighbor’s pandanus tree fell, which affected her property. “In order for me to access my driveway, I have to clean this up.”The typhoon was 165 miles northwest of Guam as of 7 a.m. local time. It had maximum sustained winds of 125 mph.It was traveling west-northwest but is expected to curve and start heading northeast.National Weather Service meteorologist Patrick Chen said the storm has the potential to become a super typhoon when it’s over the open ocean.He said residents should avoid beaches for the next couple of days because the storm will continue to generate swells and high surf for Guam’s coastlines.Guam is home to about 160,000 people. It is known for white beaches and historic World War II battle sites, and it depends heavily on tourism.Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Patients with chronic pain give advice Sponsored Stories Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving sober Early signs of cataracts in your parents and how to helpcenter_img How Arizona is preparing the leader of the next generation Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies Comments   Share   Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility HAGATNA, Guam (AP) — Guam is cleaning up after a powerful Pacific typhoon hammered the U.S. territory with high winds, rain and large waves.Workers in Mongmong, Toto and Maite villages used a pickup to tow away downed coconut trees on Saturday.A large monkeypod tree was uprooted and sitting on its side at a park in the capital of Hagatna.One person was injured in the storm and taken to the hospital.“There were no casualties. That means people really paid attention,” said Veronica Verde, spokeswoman for Federal Emergency Management Agency, Region 9.last_img read more

Greek minister calls on nation to reject bailout deal

first_imgGreece’s Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras waves and smiles as he arrives at Maximos Mansion in Athens, Friday, June 26, 2015. The bitter standoff between Greece and its international creditors was extended into the weekend, just days before Athens has to meet a crucial debt deadline which could decide whether it goes bankrupt and gets kicked out of the euro currency club.(AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza) Top Stories Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Check your body, save your life ATHENS, Greece (AP) — Greece’s development minister is urging the nation to vote against the country’s bailout deal with international creditors in a July 5 referendum.Panayiotis Lafazanis says Greeks will answer “with a resounding no” in the vote.Lafazanis spoke early Saturday, after an emergency cabinet meeting during which Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras announced his intention to call the referendum. Sponsored Stories How do cataracts affect your vision? Comments   Share   Parents, stop beating yourself up Mesa family survives lightning strike to home Here’s how to repair and patch damaged drywall Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility New Valley school lets students pick career-path academieslast_img read more