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Federal workers abroad urged to store food, water

first_imgEditor’s note: Shortly after publication of this story, the US Consulate in Hong Kong first changed and later removed its Web page advising employees to stockpile a 12-week supply of food and water. Nov 7, 2006 (CIDRAP News) – The US State Department is advising government employees overseas to stockpile enough food and water to last up to 12 weeks in preparation for the threat of a severe influenza pandemic.A Nov 3 statement posted on the Web site of the US Consulate General in Hong Kong and Macau said the State Department recently sent guidance on “shelter-in-place” or “self-quarantine” to all diplomatic and consular posts.The statement said that overseas employees, like their stateside counterparts and private citizens, should maintain supplies of food and water for a possible pandemic. The advisory urges families to store nonperishable foods that don’t require refrigeration, preparation, or cooking. Also, families are advised to store 1 gallon of water per person per day.The Hong Kong consulate also advises US citizens in Hong Kong and other countries to prepare for water supply disruptions if infrastructure breakdowns occur during an influenza pandemic.Suggested water purification techniques include boiling for at least 10 minutes and adding specified amounts of regular Clorox bleach.The recommendation that US citizens overseas stockpile 12 weeks’ worth of food and water differs from the current federal recommendation for general pandemic preparedness. The government, on its pandemic planning Web site, recommends that US residents stockpile 2 weeks’ worth of food and water.See also:PandemicFlu.gov article “A guide for individuals and families”http://www.flu.gov/individualfamily/familyguide.htmllast_img read more

Sierra Leone cancels Christmas celebrations

first_img 211 Views   no discussions HealthInternationalLifestylePrint Sierra Leone cancels Christmas celebrations by: AFP – December 12, 2014 Sharing is caring! Share Tweetcenter_img Share Share Freetown, Sierra Leone (AFP) — Sierra Leone said Friday it was banning any public Christmas celebrations as the spiralling caseload of Ebola infections continues to spread alarm.Soldiers are to be deployed throughout the festive period to force people venturing onto the streets back indoors, the government’s Ebola response unit said.Palo Conteh, head of the department, told reporters in the capital Freetown there would be “no Christmas and New Year celebrations this year”.“We will ensure that everybody remains at home to reflect on Ebola,” he said.“Military personnel will be on the streets at Christmas and the New Year to stop any street celebrations,” he said, without saying which areas would be targeted.While Islam is the dominant religion in Sierra Leone, more than a quarter of the population is Christian and public gatherings and entertainment are common during the holiday period.Conteh did not give the exact dates of the crackdown or list any exceptions. During previous local and nationwide anti-Ebola curfews, people were allowed out to worship and for “essential business”.Under current emergency regulations, bars and nightspots have already been shut down and public gatherings outlawed but there is no general ban on going outdoors or working.The World Health Organization (WHO) said on Friday that 18,188 cases of the deadly virus had been reported across Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone, resulting in 6,583 deaths.Sierra Leone reported 397 new cases during the week ending December 7 — three times as many as Liberia and Guinea combined.Sources close to the government told AFP that details on the workings of the Christmas curfew would be announced shortly.The country now counts 8,069 Ebola cases, including 1,899 deaths, according to the latest figures.Sierra Leone has already quarantined around half its population of six million, sealing off districts across the country in a bid to combat the Ebola outbreak.The government imposed a two-week lockdown on the eastern diamond mining district of Kono on Wednesday after eight cases of Ebola were confirmed in one day.The WHO’s national Ebola coordinator Olu Olushayo said doctors and nurses were “at their wits’ end.”In the space of 11 days, two WHO teams buried 87 victims, including a nurse and an ambulance driver enlisted to help dispose of corpses piling up in the local hospital, the agency said.The government reacted with surprise to the WHO’s claims, however, saying Friday they did not tally with reports from the ground and announcing that investigators had been sent to assess the situation in Kono.Local media said officials at the district’s main public hospital in Koidu had also been taken aback by the reports.Aiah Beyonquee, the leader of the local burial team, told the state-run Sierra Leone Broadcasting Corporation no bodies had been stacked at the hospital.“On Wednesday we had about 10 alert calls for death cases in the community which we reacted to,” he told the broadcaster.“There were also five deaths in the hospital and all these were buried the same day.”last_img read more

League claims commission role

first_img Premier League director of communications Dan Johnson said: “The Premier League is part of Greg Dyke’s commission. “We and the clubs agreed last month with the FA that it would be better to engage with it as a collective rather than have one individual attend the meetings. Greg Dyke agreed at the time that this was the best way forward. “We will take a full part in the processes and outputs of the commission and have put the considerable knowledge, experience, research and data at the commission’s disposal, whether that is drawn from the Premier League board, executive or member clubs and their staff. “There is a huge amount of expertise at our clubs. It has been made absolutely clear that Greg and his team can speak to or gather evidence from Premier League club directors, first-team managers, academy managers and any other league representatives they feel would benefit the process. “As our chairman, Anthony Fry, said back in September: ‘There is no doubt around the Premier League table as to the benefits of a national set-up that is thriving and performing well. That is why the Premier League clubs, board and executive all signed up to contributing to the process of debate initiated by Greg and helping to identify any appropriate outcomes that will serve to improve standards and delivery in respect of player development.’ “This position remains wholly unchanged. “One thing that will make it much easier for the Premier League to define our precise involvement in the commission is when we receive the terms of reference, details of the secretariat and a timetable.” Speaking about the Premier League’s decision on Wednesday, Dyke said: “I spoke to the chairman, who is an old mate of mine, and (chief executive) Richard (Scudamore) and we discussed it before and they said, ‘Look, we will give all the support we can but we don’t want to sit on it’. “I think it’s a shame but I understand.” The Premier League insists it is part of the Football Association commission charged with improving the national team. Press Associationcenter_img The commission will be lead by FA chairman Greg Dyke and will also include former England manager Glenn Hoddle, Football League chairman Greg Clarke, FA vice-chairman Roger Burden, LMA chairman Howard Wilkinson, new PFA chairman Ritchie Humphreys, ex-Crewe boss Dario Gradi and former England defender Danny Mills. Dyke said on Wednesday it was “a shame” the Premier League had turned down his offer to have its chairman, Anthony Fry, on the commission. last_img read more

40 Smallholder Farmers attend Vegetable Production Seminar

first_imgParticipants of Farmers Field School, supported by FAO in collaboration with the MOA.The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations in partnership with the Ministry of Agriculture (MOA) has opened a capacity building exercise for smallholder vegetable and poultry farmers to enhance social cohesion and improve the productivity of valuable vegetables.The capacity building exercise started since February 20 and is expected to conclude on March 3.Approximately forty farmers mostly women and youth from two counties, Montserrado and Margibi, are obtaining knowledge and skills in Farmer Field School (FFS) methodology, concept, and principles. When this knowledge is acquired it will enable them to regularly meet, discuss common problems and conduct practical experiments to mitigate and enhance productivity.FFS, a community-driven approach to agricultural training and education, is an interactive and participatory learning by doing approach. Farmers enhance their understanding of agro-ecosystems, which leads to production systems that are more resilient in local conditions and optimize the use of valuable resources for sustainability.Speaking recently during the opening of the training in Kakata, Margibi County, FAO Program Support Officer, Mr. Jesse Yuan urged the participants to take ownership of the project, that will ensure access and availability of local chicken, fresh eggs, and vegetables in the counties and surroundings.He said that FAO through the MoA designed the initiative to empower vulnerable women and youth farmers in vegetable and poultry production along the value chains.Explaining the sustainability of the project after the donor and partners’ departure, Mr. Yuan said the limited access of farmers to quality extension services are among several challenges the farmers have encountered over the years which have led to the failure of many interventions to impact the direct and indirect beneficiaries.To mitigate some of the challenges especially that of the extension services, FAO through its technical cooperation support is currently engaged with the MoA for the formulation of a project aimed at strengthening the capacity of the extension services.Mr. Yuan said the experiences farmers gain through FFS allow them to increase yields and income through sustainable ways. “This process also helps farmers to improve their analytical, decision-making and communication skills,” he said.He mentioned that the FFS is characterized by regular observation of the current crop, animal, fishery or forestry throughout a cropping or reproductive cycle; evaluation and introduction of more sustainable production practices (including pre and post-harvest and storage operation) building on local knowledge as well as testing and adopting new practices to the local context.It may be recalled that in 2016, FAO provided over US$400,000 to support the MOA for the project “Support to sustainable production and marketing of vegetable and poultry for Urban/Peri-urban women.” The intervention sought to provide valuable vegetables and address the issues of storage and simple irrigation that impeded maximum profit making for vegetable growers during the dry season in Liberia.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

ASSESSMENT OF DONEGAL CHEMICAL DUMPSITES NEEDED BEFORE LIVES LOST – CLAIM

first_imgCouncillor John Shéamais Ó Fearraigh has demanded that the Government commission an immediate and thorough risk assessment report into chemical munitions’ dumpsites located off the Donegal Coast.Location of known chemical munitions dumpsites (Red Stars) off the Donegal Coast.)Councillor Ó Fearraigh, who earlier this month raised the issue in a motion put before Donegal County Council, says that the Government must now take urgent action and investigate these sites as they could pose a very real and substantive risk to the public.Cllr Ó Fearraigh said “Earlier this month, following concerns from local residents in the west of the county about this issue, I put forward a motion before Donegal County Council in which I called on the Department of the Marine to investigate claims that hundreds of barrels containing potentially toxic and hazardous material lie dumped just a few miles off the coast of Donegal.” “Past investigations by intergovernmental organisations and research agencies have confirmed that sites containing such material do in fact exist and have their origins dating back as far as the First World War.”“A report compiled in 2010 by the OSPAR Commission into past dumping at sea of chemical weapons and munitions, explicitly states that there are in excess of 150 known dumping locations throughout the convention area of which Ireland is a contracted party.”He added that while many of these dump sites contain conventional weaponry, some have been found to hold chemical munitions with the report finding that five such dumping sites have been identified off the Donegal coast.“According to the report, marine dumped chemical munitions pose a very real and substantive risk to life, particularly if it’s found that such weapons contain substances such as mustard agent or phosphorus which are both strongly mutagenic and carcinogenic.” “The report states that much of what we know about these dumping sites comes from information supplied to Ireland by the various overseas contracted parties and organisations such as NATO, the Royal Society in the UK, the Norwegian Defence Research Establishment and the Scottish Office of Agriculture, the Environment and Fisheries Department.”“It’s crucial if we are ever to know the true extent of the risk posed by these chemical weapons present off our county’s coastline that the Government here initiates a report into these sites so that the true nature of the problem may be made known.”“As well as my motion earlier this month into this issue, my party colleague Deputy Pearse Doherty has also tabled a Parliamentary Question to the Minister for the Marine in which he has asked what action the Minister plans to take to investigate this matter.”“Working together, we are now calling on the Government to immediately commission an immediate and thorough risk assessment report into chemical munitions’ dumpsites located off the Donegal Coast before the worst should happen and lives are lost.”“This is a very serious situation and one which the Government cannot simply afford to ignore any longer.” ASSESSMENT OF DONEGAL CHEMICAL DUMPSITES NEEDED BEFORE LIVES LOST – CLAIM was last modified: October 19th, 2015 by StephenShare 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)Tags:chemical dumpsitesdonegallast_img read more