first_imgAn improved technique for concentrating heavy metals onto the surface of tungsten wires, prior to analysis by electrothermal atomic absorption spectrometry, is reported. Ultraclean methods and materials, described here, have enabled improvements in detection limits to be realised. With the new procedure, detection limits of 0.01 ng Cd kg−1, 0.47 ng Cu kg−1, 0.22 ng Pb kg−1 and 0.24 ng Zn kg−1 are obtained. These are low enough to allow analysis of ancient and modern. Antarctic snow, except perhaps for cadmium. A comparison with samples injected directly into the graphite furnace shows good agreement, confirming that the method is suitable for the simple polar snow matrix.last_img read more

first_imgHLS Dean Martha Minow received the Gold Medal for Outstanding Contribution to Public Discourse from the College Historical Society of Trinity College, Dublin at a ceremony on Nov. 13, 2012. The College Historical Society, popularly referred to as “The Hist,” is one of the world’s oldest undergraduate debating societies, established in 1770. It is “built on a belief that discourse and intellectualism are vital to the program of society.”Minow received the award for her leadership in the area of human rights and her advocacy for members of racial and religious minorities, women, and persons with disabilities. Upon accepting the award, she gave a lecture on the question, “Should Child Soldiers be Forgiven?”Previous recipients of the Gold Medal for Outstanding Contributions to Public Discourse include Iranian judge and civil rights activist Shirin Ebadi, Burmese politician and democracy advocate Aung San Suu Kyi, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, author, activist and philosopher Noam Chomsky, economist Jeffery Sachs, economist Joseph Stiglitz and former president of South Africa F.W. de Klerk.The late Massachusetts Sen. Edward M. Kennedy was also a recipient. Upon receiving the medal, he stated, “I consider this occasion one of the greatest honors of my public life, as well as an opportunity to express myself in matters that I feel are vital to our time.”last_img read more

first_imgCLEAR LAKE — Twenty-two of the candidates in the Democratic presidential race plan to be at the Surf Ballroom in Clear Lake this Friday night for the “Wing Ding.”“It’s going to be a packed house,” says Randy Black, the Wing Ding’s chairman and chief organizer.About 1800 tickets for the annual event have been snapped up.“We’re sold out,” he said late last week, adding there will be a couple of hundred event campaign staff, reporters and event volunteers in the ballroom as well as ticket-holders.Wing Dings of the past have featured large crowds. In 2007, future 2008 Iowa Caucus winner Barack Obama was the Wing Ding’s keynote speaker. By 2015, four candidates — including Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders — were the main draw.“That was a sell-out and that was huge, but I really, really think this one here is going to be even bigger,” Black said. “It’s just going to be crazy.”For starters, there are more than five times as many candidates as there were at the Wing Ding four years ago. Each candidate will be given five minutes to speak on stage this Friday night. It’s the same stage where music legends ranging from Duke Ellington to Buddy Holly have performed. In addition to the 22 presidential candidates who’ll take the stage this Friday night, Black says a “special guest” will speak to the crowd, too.“We will announce that special guest on Friday, at the event,” Black said. “I love surprises.”Black is sharing a hint, though, that the person is a “foreign dignitary.”The first “Wing Ding” was held 16 years ago to raise money for three county parties. It’s grown to seven host counties and another 28 county parties sell tickets, getting to keep $12 from every $35 ticket sold.“I have a philosophy: ‘Go big or go home,’” he said, “so we did that.”Black said boosting the bank accounts of county parties is part of the Wing Ding’s legacy. Another goal is to give Iowa Caucus-goers a venue to evaluate the candidates.“They deserve to see up-front who they’re going to choose come Caucus Night in February,” Black said, “and we’re just one of those tools to make it happen.”The Wing Ding’s website indicates the event will kick-off around 5 p.m. Friday. C-SPAN is carrying the event.last_img read more

first_imgShare on: WhatsApp Turin, Italy | AFP | Paulo Dybala’s stunning curling free-kick rubber-stamped top spot in Champions League Group D for Juventus on Tuesday with a 1-0 win over Atletico Madrid in Turin.The Italian champions had already booked their place for the last 16 with two games to spare but made sure of top spot with an impressive win.Diego Simeone’s Atletico meanwhile will have to wait until their final group game against Lokomotiv Moscow in Madrid to advance to the knockout rounds.Juventus have 13 points from five games, with Atletico still on seven, one point ahead of third-placed Bayer Leverkusen after their 2-0 win over Lokomotiv.Cristiano Ronaldo returned to action after recent knee problems, partnered by Dybala as in-form Gonzalo Higuain started on the bench.The 34-year-old Portugal international was rested for last Saturday’s Serie A win over Atalanta despite scoring four goals for Portugal in the international break after being substituted in Juventus’ previous two games.He had another injury scare in the opening period as he grimaced in pain and limped after colliding with the corner flag as he tried to stop the ball going out of play, but played on.Atletico had their chances in a balanced first half with Thomas Partey sending a long-range volley wide after 13 minutes, as Juventus goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny got down low to smother a goal-bound Saul Niguez effort. However it was 26-year-old Dybala who was the standout player, and he got the breakthrough just before the break when he curled in a superb strike from a tight angle to leave Atletico goalkeeper Jan Oblak stunned.Ronaldo threatened after an hour racing towards goal only to send wide, before Federico Bernadeschi rattled the post after coming on for Welsh international Aaron Ramsey.Dybala went off to a standing ovation when replaced by Higuain for the last quarter of an hour.Matthijs de Ligt, who had been a doubt after dislocating his shoulder at the weekend, pulled off a brilliant sliding tackle to steal the ball from the feet of a goal-bound Angel Correa with seven minutes to go.And Alvaro Morata missed the chance to steal a point in the final moments of the game.Correa sent the ball across the face of goal but the former Juventus striker failed to finish off on front of an empty goal.last_img read more

first_imgLITTLE SILVER – Seven years ago, Red Bank Regional (RBR) implemented a nationally known college-preparatory program called AVID (Advancement through Individual Determination) to help students challenge themselves to perform their best academically.School officials say the preparation has paid off since all AVID students have taken at least one AP or IB course, the most challenging classes offered at RBR.This year, a new phase was implemented with seniors, who are in the fourth year of the program, leading the “tutorology” segment to aid lower classmen.The program is different than tutoring in the traditional sense. “When the students have a question, the tutor does not answer it, but asks them questions using their own notes, homework or textbooks,” said RBR senior and AVID student, Khalia Smith. “This way we guide them so they can use these methods to find the answers themselves.”Sophomore Nydasia Birch is enrolled in her fourth year of the AVID program, having taken it as an elective in middle school.“AVID is great since it gives me time and space to follow-up on what I had in class,” she said. “It is great to have the seniors come to class as we connect with them. They are not just giving me the answer. They have me get out my notes and gain the experience, rather than just going to a test with the answer and not understanding (the material.)”The AVID classroom is a full-year elective that meets every other day for 84 minutes. During that time, students practice study skills using a study tool called Cornell Notes. Critical thinking is enhanced through a program called the Socratic Seminar, which stresses active listening and discussion. For 30 minutes of that timeframe, the students engage in tutorology where they have the opportunity to review lessons they may have not understood in their classes or seek help to complete homework assignments.“Tutorology is a key component of the AVID program,” said RBR Social Studies Teacher Kyle Waltz, who teaches the AVID sophomore class. “The older kids help the younger students by leading them to an answer using critical thinking skills.”During the past six years, this function was filled by volunteer graduate students from Monmouth University.  Due to the college’s scheduling this semester, the graduate students could not participate in the RBR program.As commitment to community service is a key component of AVID, the decision was made to utilize the senior AVID students for this function this year.According to Waltz, the experiment has gone very well.  “While the college students were great to work with, they haven’t seen some of this work in six years where are kids just had the same courses, know the material and know what the teachers are looking for,” he said.Senior Jess Scotti is in her fourth year in AVID and spends a portion of her classroom time with Waltz’s sophomore class students.“As a tutor, I see their (underclassmen’s) perspective,” she said. “As I hadn’t learned the material in a while, it was hard at first, but when I started working with them, it all came back to me and I was able to help them.“I feel it is giving something back, as AVID has helped me so much, particularly with organizational skills and in staying focused,” Scotti said.Scotti is one of 10 students that continued with AVID through four years of high school. While her past three years have concentrated on working toward strong organizational and critical thinking skills, this year, guided by her AVID teacher, RBR business teacher James Young, she has already completed her college applications and secured the important teacher recommendations for college.The remainder of the senior-year AVID activities will focus on preparing the seniors for their college days including filling out the complicated government FASFA forms and seeking scholarship opportunities to afford the colleges they will attend. The students may even be able to explore and choose the courses they will take in their freshman year of college. It is anticipated that every AVID student will attend college, with most aiming to attend four-year colleges.“While, as teachers, we helped give them the skills they needed to get into college, now my job is to help them be successful once they get there,” James Young said.RBR AVID Supervisor and Assistant Principal Rob Donohoe said the program changes have been welcomed. “As in all things, you need to be flexible, but the silver lining was seeing how well the kids have interacted together. They also believe in this program as it has really helped them with their own college preparation. AVID has also been a real boon to our school in general, since in the years we have offered the program, failure rates have decreased, more of our students have gotten into college (including four-year colleges) while many more students have taken higher level courses.”last_img read more

first_imgLook no further than a dozen committee members and an army of volunteers for a successful 2016 Canadian Direct Insurance BC Men’s Curling Championships at the Nelson Curling Club.The championships are in full swing, giving locals the perfect opportunity to see World Class Curling at the Nelson Curling Club. Mallard’s Source for sports would like to salute the 2016 BC Men’s Curl Committee with Team of the Week honours.The committee includes,Icemaker Al May, committee chair person Brent Pihowich, Barry Marsh, Garry Meadows, Ron Garner, Nando Salviulo, Cathy McLeod, Brenda Bax, Vivian Benedetti, Marlo Tedesco and Karen McGinnis.last_img read more

first_img“Our expectations are to win our group,” said Bennett.The format of the 16-team tournament is four pools of four teams. Only the teams that finish first in their pool get to move on to the medal round.“It is a very difficult tournament because you can’t have any missteps along the way. Ultimately, you can’t lose a game,” said Bennett.Bennett said the girls have had a good season, but with the loss of Naomi Perkins they have struggled to score goals.“It is a different team this year,” added Bennett. “But we are a very good team and definitely would be considered a contender going into this competition.LVR opens the tournament against a tough St. Michael’s University School on Thursday morning at 8 a.m. St Mikes has won the bronze medal the past two championships and beat Nelson in Victoria earlier this year.St Mikes scored on a penalty with only minutes remaining to break a scoreless draw.LVR plays Vanderhoof at 2 p.m. and then takes on DW Poppy, who won the Fraser Valley championship, at 10 a.m. on Friday morning. The remaining two games will be decided by the results of the first three games.“We are really hoping people will get out and support the girls,” said Bennett. “The girls are very excited about playing on their home turf and in front of their home fans.” LV Rogers senior girls’ soccer team is going to have a very busy week.Not only are the girls getting ready to defend their BC AA provincial championship, but they are going to be doing it on home turf.This week, LV Rogers is hosting the BC High School AA Girls Soccer Provincial Championships at the Lakeside fields. There will be 16 teams and close to 300 players participating in the annual tournament. Teams are from all over the province.“There will be some of the top female soccer teams in the province in Nelson this week,” said head coach and tournament chair Chuck Bennett. “There will be some great games and some great soccer played.”Action starts on Thursday morning at 8 a.m. at Lakeside pitch. Each team plays two games Thursday and two games Friday and then one playoff game on Saturday. The championship final is at 2 p.m. at Lakeside field on the Saturday. The competition opens with a banquet at the Prestige Hotel on the Wednesday night. LVR went undefeated last year, including a dramatic shoot-out win in the final, to bring home the championship, and Bennett is expecting this year’s team to be in thick of the competition again.last_img read more

first_imgJOCKEY QUOTES NOTES: The winning owners are John Magnier, Derrick Smith and Michael Tabor. GARY STEVENS, TARIS, WINNER: “It was a perfect trip. It set up, the fractions were realistic and when Mike came up on the outside of me going into the far turn the pressure really picked up.“Simon has done such a good job settling her down, the question was if she could go long and she proved it today. She’d only tried going long one time but she’s always felt, to me, that she could go long.“She reminds me of Beholder. She has the same tendencies, the same high cruising speed and they’re both very intelligent. She deserved this today.” SIMON CALLAGHAN, TARIS, WINNER: “Definitely (it was a new dimension in not going to the lead). It was nice for her to do it. I was a little anxious down the backside when she just took hold of the bridle a little bit. She’s such a smart filly, she just dropped it and relaxed. I kind of knew there were no worries about the distance. I think the one time she ran this distance (sixth in the Honeybee at Oaklawn Park March 8, 2014), she got hurt after that race. It wasn’t a true reflection.“Todd Beattie who trained her before told me she would stretch out. She’s kind of an adaptable mare and like I said, she’s just a good, classy filly. Gary knows this filly, not quite as good as me, but almost. I left it to him. It was one of those races with five runners where I didn’t know where the pace would be. I thought someone might try to take us on, so we just left it to Gary to see how the race unfolded.“I think we’ll wait for the Santa Margarita in March (Grade I, $500,000, 1 1/8 miles on March 19).” DRAYDEN VAN DYKE, BIRDATTHEWIRE, SECOND: “I was completely taken out by Santiago (Gonzalez, on Oscar Party, whose rein broke going into the first turn). I didn’t know what was happening at first. He came flying by me, which made my horse get really rank. Poor Santiago though, it wasn’t his fault but I got stuck outside of him and he was way out there.“If that hadn’t happened I would have been sitting perfect, right in behind the four that were up front; I would have been cruising. I would love another shot at riding her; it’s a shame that today turned out like it did because I think she would have run much closer to Taris.“I think the only difficult part about riding Birdatthewire is down the lane. She likes being out in the middle of the track but you’ve just got to let her do her thing.” TRAINER QUOTES -30-last_img read more

first_imgAlways on trend, the Mavericks Barbers of Letterkenny have a great guide for local men who want to change up their style with the seasons. Summer VibesAs the weather beings to heat up and the Sahara sand falls upon us, in Mavericks we are noticing a shift in styles being requested. So with that in mind this week we are bringing you some inspiration for your summer haircut…Whether you’re keeping professional for work, finishing college, going travelling or just hanging about, these hairstyles will look great no matter the occasion. We at Mavericks take particular pride in keeping up to date with the trends and attending workshops to ensure we apply the best techniques to achieve the best results in all haircuts, be it modern or old school. The Skin FadeThe Skin Fade a classic men’s favourite right now. The fade will never go out of style, like a plain white T. It’s all about the transition from hair to “skin”, the style on top is up to you. Just make sure your barber knows what he is doing before you ask for this one! Mavericks salt spray is key to the styling on top. Barber: JPThe QuiffThe Quiff is still one of our favourite hairstyles just because it looks so great when done right! Definitely go with this hairstyle if you want something that looks good and is easy to achieve. Can be match with a variety of fades. This look was created using Mavericks Shaping paste! Barber: Our new man Callum!The Modern Side PartThe Modern side part is a great style for guys looking for that sleek and suave look that will have everyone admiring! It is a very sharp hair cut that will look good and once you’ve found the right product it is easy to maintain. We recommend using Layrite Original Pomade for this one. Barber: ScottThe short crop cutThe short crop cut is an awesome hairstyle for guys looking for an easy to maintain haircut. Short sides with 1-1.5 inches of hair on top to achieve this style. We highly recommend this hairstyle for guys with a square face shape. Texture achieved with Mavericks Deluxe Pomade. Barber: Darwyn. The Textured top with cropped fringeThe Textured top with cropped fringe: It’s not going away… The modern style fade, loads of texture on top and a bowl cut of a fringe, but get the right barber, and it looks pretty damn sharp! Styled with dear barber shaping cream. Barber: RonanIf you like what you see, then there is only one place in town that you need to visit! Fortunately for all the gentlemen who come through the door at Mavericks they don’t just leave with a cracking haircut, they get 5 star service and a great experience!No appointments necessary… Just bring your hair!Mavericks Traditional Barbershop, Lower Main Street, Letterkenny. Also, you can catch up with us on Facebook  (www.facebook.com/Maverickstraditionalbarbershop) and follow us on Instagram (maverickstraditionalbarbershop) Snapchat @MAVERICKSTBS or Twitter www.twitter.com/mavericksbaber…or better still call in and treat yourself to the haircut you deserve! New summer hair inspiration with Mavericks Barbers was last modified: April 26th, 2019 by Mavericks BarbersShare 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

first_imgAs the Warriors prepare to open the first round of the NBA playoffs against Los Angeles Clippers on Saturday at Oracle Arena, beat writers Dieter Kurtenbach and Mark Medina break down which rivals pose the greatest threat to the Dubs’ three-peat hopes in the latest edition of the WarriorsHQ podcast.Boogie’s playoffs debutFirst, they open with a look back at how Golden State let DeMarcus “Boogie” Cousins take shots against New Orleans Pelicans on Wednesday and how that will factor into the …last_img read more

first_imgClick here if you’re unable to view the video or gallery on your mobile device. Join us Sunday at 12:30 p.m. for all the live scoring, news and analysis as the Warriors hope to put the Clippers on the brink of elimination in Game 4 of their first-round Western Conference playoff series in Los Angeles.The Warriors used a sterling effort Thursday night to erase memories of their Game 2 collapse and grab a 2-1 series edge over L.A. with a 132-105 victory. But can they avoid a letdown …last_img read more

first_imgCD AndersonSouth Africans like living life in the fast lane, and the country boasts a long tradition of professional motor racing, on both two and four wheels, from track and production car racing to rally and Formula One. Along the way, South Africa has created its fair amount of racing champions, trailblazers and superstars. We look at five of South Africa’s greatest motorsport legends.Gugu Zulu‘the fastest brother in Africa’, pioneering South African racing driver Gugu Zulu, who died in July 2016 (Photo: Volkswagen) pic.twitter.com/ZgTr2Q6pnP— CD Anderson (@bizarrojerri) October 11, 2016Gugu Zulu, who died in July this year while climbing Mount Kilimanjaro, was one of South Africa’s best loved sport stars. He broke barriers in becoming South Africa’s first black professional racing driver, affectionately known to the racing world as “the fastest brother in Africa”.Born in Soweto in 1978, Zulu started racing at the age of 20, under the tutelage of South African rally legend Sarel van der Merwe. He earned the second seat next to Van der Merwe in his Sasol Steam production car team in 2001. After winning both the Wesbank Driver of the Year and Goodyear Star of Tomorrow motor racing awards, Zulu drove in both rally and track racing, predominately for Volkswagen.Together with driver/navigator Carl Perkins, Zulu won the SA National Rally Championships in 2007, 2009 and 2010, eventually graduating to rally’s top division in 2014.He became the first South African to be invited to race in the Skip Barber Dodge Racing Series in the US, and was also a member of the South African A1 GP team.Jody ScheckterAs one of 17 South African Formula One drivers, Jody Scheckter was the country’s most successful driver in the sport. He rose to international prominence in the 1970s, winning his first F1 race in 1972. Scheckter went on to win 10 races (including a home win at Kyalami in 1975), a Championship in 1979 and over 30 podium finishes. He drove for McLaren, Tyrell and Ferrari.One of his more memorable, though tragic, racing moments was in the 1973 US Grand Prix, when Scheckter attempted to rescue fellow driver Frenchman François Cevert, who crashed in front of him during qualifying laps. Cevert died and the event had a profound effect on Scheckter, who became a more mature and less reckless driver during the latter part of his career.SA F1 driver Jody Scheckter attempted to save driver François Cevert during a fatal crash at 1973 US Grand Prix (Photo: Sports Car Digest) pic.twitter.com/KxaOO815Mt— CD Anderson (@bizarrojerri) October 11, 2016After retiring in 1981, Scheckter worked as a race commentator and driving team owner. He is currently an organic farmer in the UK. His two sons, Toby and Tomas, also become racing drivers in Formula Three and Indy Car Championship. Scheckter placed 90th on the list of Great South Africans in 2004.Sarel van der MerweSarel van der Merwe, South African rally & racing legend, won 11 SA Rally Championships between 1975-1988. (Photo: https://t.co/2TTWW5lSwP) pic.twitter.com/YlD911IxWP— CD Anderson (@bizarrojerri) October 11, 2016“Supervan”, as Sarel van der Merwe is affectionately known, is South Africa’s most successful rally driver, winning a record 11 South African Drivers Championships between 1975 and 1988. He has also competed in Nascar events in the US, as well as saloon and modified saloon (track) racing in South Africa after retiring from rally driving.Van der Merwe was the face of Volkswagen and Audi during his rallying heyday, rejecting the more popular but more compact Japanese vehicles because of his lanky frame. In a popular 1987 television advert for Volkswagen, he famously demonstrated how the car “sticks to the road like boerewors to a braai grill”.Van der Merwe officially retired from racing in 2002, at the age of 56, but has since become integral to continuing the popularity of motorsport in South Africa as a race organiser and coach for up-and-coming drivers such as Gugu Zulu.Desiré WilsonSouth African racing driver Desire Wilson, one of only five women to have competed professionally in Formula One (https://t.co/28W0sZ8yjB) pic.twitter.com/0KfzltJbUl— CD Anderson (@bizarrojerri) October 11, 2016Desiré Wilson is one of only five women to have competed professionally in Formula One (F1). She raced in the 1980 British Grand Prix at Brands Hatch. While the race was not officially part of the greater Formula One championship because of the use of modified and retired F1 cars, at the time it was the only opportunity for female drivers to compete in F1 cars.Wilson won the race, the first and only woman to do so, and the Brands Hatch track named one of its grandstands after her. Breaking further into the male- dominated F1 world proved difficult, so Wilson went on to other racing disciplines, including Kart racing and Grand Tour endurance racing.She also attempted to break into American Indy open-wheel racing during the 1980s. Officially retiring from racing in 1997, Wilson continues to compete in exhibition races, such as the popular Goodwood Revival motor racing event in the UK.Along with other pioneering female drivers Divina Galica and Giovanna Amati, Wilson helped to pave the way for female racers in motorsport, including American Nascar driver Danica Patrick and Formula Three’s Katherine Legge.Brad BinderSouth African motorcycle racer and 2016 Moto3 World Champion Brad Binder (photo: Red Bull/KTM/Ajo) pic.twitter.com/nRrmadzbmy— CD Anderson (@bizarrojerri) October 11, 2016The 2016 Moto3 World Champion Brad Binder is one of South Africa’s up-and- coming international motorcycle racers.The 21-year-old become the first South African to win a Grand Prix championship since Jon Ekerold’s 1981 win for Yamaha. Binder rides for Red Bull/KTM/Ajo, and his title win at Alcañiz, Spain, on 25 September 2016, came during a consistently good year. He secured five wins, including first place at Silverstone, UK, and Mugello, Italy, the spiritual home of the sport.Binder began his racing career racing karts in Potchefstroom and started racing bikes professionally at the age of 10. Entering the Red Bull Rookies Cup championship in 2009 prepared him for a prolific international career that will, along with this year’s win, lead to the senior Moto2 championship in 2017, with aspirations to become as great as the 250cc legend Max Biaggi, who dominated and popularised the sport during the 1990s.Source: Motorsport South AfricaSouthAfrica.info reporterWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See: Using SouthAfrica.info materiallast_img read more

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest A recent “#BLOGMEETSBEEF” program highlighting the Pasture to Plate Experience, sponsored by four state beef councils and the Beef Checkoff Program, has helped increase knowledge of beef and beef production among 14 key food bloggers. The event was held this spring in Columbus, Ohio, and funded by the Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio and Wisconsin Beef Councils. It was also supported by the family-owned Meijer supermarket chain, which carries only Certified Angus Beef.The bloggers invited to the event came from across the four states and are followed on their blogs by consumers throughout the United States. They represent a wide range of cooking and family interests, and regularly share knowledge and recipes with other consumers with an appreciation for food, reaching more than 984,000 people on multiple social platforms, including Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.The event began with a tour of the Claylick Run Farm, an Angus seedstock and grain operation located in Licking County. A presentation from a veterinarian provided key points about necessary animal health aspects of beef production, and was followed by dinner at an upscale casual steakhouse. The following day, the bloggers learned about Meijer meat operations, and were treated to presentations on cutting and cooking beef. They received tips on food photography, and put their own culinary skills to the test in a “Battle of the Beef” Cookoff and Photo Shoot.“This was a tremendous opportunity to reach out to food enthusiasts who reach thousands of consumers on a daily basis,” said Angie Horkan, director of marketing for the Wisconsin Beef Council. “They came away with a huge appreciation for what it takes to bring beef to America’s dinner tables.”In fact, pre- and post-event surveys showed the experience had a tremendous influence on how participants view the beef industry, and how they will use their new information in the future. All bloggers said after the event that they believed the positives either strongly (93%) or somewhat (7%) outweigh the negatives of beef. Furthermore, all said the experience prepared them to communicate simple, healthy ways of incorporating beef either extremely (79%) or very (21%) well.“While every consumer would benefit from directly experiencing the beef industry, that isn’t feasible,” said Elizabeth Harsh, executive director of the Ohio Beef Council. “The next best option is to give those who interact with consumers that opportunity, and that’s what we did here.”This type of partnerships between state beef councils helps extend the beef checkoff, according to Alison Smith, who coordinates foodservice and retail programs for the Kentucky Beef Council.“By working together, we can build on the success of the national program and on our individual state programs,” she said.The “BLOGMEETSBEEF Pasture to Plate Experience” is also one way state beef councils and the Beef Checkoff Program are addressing the beef industry’s Long Range Plan, which calls for the industry to grow consumer trust in beef and beef production by increasing opportunities for food industry influencers to get first-hand experiences with beef producers and beef production practices.last_img read more

first_imgThe bottom linePellets are a mixed bag, but they offer enough advantages in many situations to warrant consideration. They provide a user-friendly option for relying on a relatively local, renewable fuel source. If Europe is any indication, the use of pellet heat in the U.S. is likely to increase significantly in the years and decades ahead.Check out the high-performing, low-emitting pellet stoves that we’ve found in our GreenSpec section. Disadvantages of wood pellet heatingNoisy. There’s no getting around the fact that pellet stoves are noisy. There are typically two fans: one to supply combustion air to the burn pot and another to circulate heated air into the room. I find the noise annoying; my wife hates it. It’s certainly a far cry from a silent wood stove in our living room. There’s a Wiseway Pellet Stove that supposedly operates passively, but haven’t seen one in operation yet. Pellet boilers are noisy too, but they’re typically in the basement or a separate building, so it’s not a problem.Electricity dependent. When you lose power a pellet stove or pellet boiler can’t operate (unless you have one of those new Wiseway stoves). This is an important consideration not only in rural areas prone to power failures, but also more generally in an age of global climate change with more intense storms forecast. With our own Quadrafire Mt. Vernon AE pellet stove, I bought a kit that allow me to operate the DC fans using a 12-volt automotive-type battery during a power outage. It won’t auto-start using the DC power, so you have to start it by hand with kindling or starter paste, but at least it can be used to keep a space warm when the grid is down.Comfort. Pellet stoves don’t deliver radiant heat. I love pulling up a chair in front of our wood stove on a cold winter night and sitting down with a good book. That radiant heat seems to warm you inside and out. Pellet stoves — at least the one we have — don’t heat up in the same way and radiate heat. Nearly all the heat is delivered by fan-forced convection. It’s just not as pleasant.Plastic bags. Unless you get pellets delivered in bulk you produce a lot of polyethylene plastic waste from the bags. The first two years we had our pellet stove I was able to buy bulk pellets that were delivered in reusable thousand-pound totes that sat on pallets. I had to carry the pellets upstairs in five-gallon pails, but at least I didn’t generate all that waste. Unfortunately, the company that had delivered those totes disappeared, and I had to switch to the more typical 40-pound plastic bags (which we reuse as trash bags). I believe that as pellet heating becomes more common, bulk delivery of pellets will become more available.Complex. Unlike wood stoves, pellet stoves have moving parts that can wear out and that require maintenance. There are blowers, temperature sensors, an auger to deliver pellets, and other components. Most retailers recommend annual servicing, which can add significantly to the total operating cost of a pellet stove or pellet boiler.Less control over the fuel. If you have a woodlot you can cut and split your own firewood. That’s not the case with pellets. Pellet factories use massive presses to extrude wood fibers through dies to create the pellets. Do-it-yourself pellets aren’t an option.Not always cheaper. While pellets are less expensive than most other fuels, they may not be cheaper that natural gas or air-source minisplit heat pumps. Use our Heating Fuel Cost Calculator to compare costs per unit of delivered heat. In the Northeast, pellets typically track with heating oil — going up when heating oil prices spike, though generally remaining significantly lower. If you can order pellets in bulk rather than buying them in 40-pound bags, there may be some savings — but not all that much. And there have occasionally been shortages of pellets, driving prices up substantially. Advantages of wood pellet heatingRegional fuel. The fuel is — or can be — local or regional in origin. At a minimum it’s not fuel that’s coming from places where they don’t like us — like the Middle East. When I’m buying pellets, the source is a significant consideration. I’m willing to pay slightly more to have my pellets come from nearby plants in Jaffrey, New Hampshire or Rutland, Vermont.Carbon-neutral. The life-cycle of wood pellet production and use can — and should — be close to carbon-neutral. With natural gas, propane, or heating oil we’re taking carbon that was sequestered underground millions of years ago and releasing that as a greenhouse gas into the atmosphere (where it contributes to global warming). When we burn wood pellets we’re still releasing about the same amount of stored carbon into the atmosphere, but that carbon was sequestered in the wood fiber over just a few decades, and if we’re managing our woodlands properly (replacing harvested trees with new ones) the entire life cycle results in almost no net carbon emissions. RELATED ARTICLES Relatively clean-burning. Wood pellets are a lot cleaner-burning than cordwood. This is because pellet combustion is aided by a fan that supplies a steady stream of air to the burn pot. When I first start up my pellet stove — as the electric heating element heats up the pellets to start the combustion — there’s some smoke produced, but once the pellet stove is operating there is no visible smoke being generated. (This is a reason to set the temperature differential on the control relatively high — so that it won’t cycle on and off too frequently.)Infrequent stoking. Pellet stoves have integral bins that can be filled every few days in cold weather, and most pellet boilers have stand-alone bins that hold several months’ worth of pellets. Regular stoking isn’t required — unlike with a wood stove. If a pellet stove is your only heating system in a space (as is the case with our apartment) how long you can go away depends on the energy efficiency of the building, expected outdoor temperatures, the volume of pellets your stove or bin holds, and the thermostat settings. With our pellet stove, we can go away for about three days in the coldest Vermont weather as long as I leave the thermostat set fairly low.Convenient. With a pellet stove you don’t have to handle firewood. I’m sure I’ve cut, split, stacked, and burned a couple hundred cords of wood over the decades, and I know that it’s a lot of work. With pellet stoves you’re still handling the fuel — usually 40-pound bags of the rabbit-food-size pellets — but it’s more convenient than dealing with firewood.Economical. Pellets are less expensive than heating oil, propane, or electric-resistance heat, so you can save money if you would otherwise use those fuels. You may save more money with a pellet stove by heating only a few rooms instead of the whole house — though there are often ways to do that with other heating systems as well. Alex is founder of BuildingGreen, Inc. and executive editor of Environmental Building News. He also recently created the Resilient Design Institute. To keep up with Alex’s latest articles and musings, you can sign up for his Twitter feed. My wife and I have a sort-of love-hate relationship with our pellet stove. She leans more toward the latter, while I see the benefits outweighing the negatives.In this column I’ll outline the primary advantages and disadvantages of pellet heating. 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