Load remaining images Photo: Brandon Weil Photo: Brandon Weil Photo: Brandon Weil Photo: Brandon Weil Photo: Brandon Weil Last Friday, on December 5th, Circles Around The Sun kicked off their 2018 tour with a sold-out performance at The Troubadour in Hollywood with support from Grateful Shred. Led by guitarist Neal Casal and featuring keyboardist Adam MacDougall, drummer Mark Levy, and bassist Dan Horne, CATS has earned a lot of praise since its inception in 2015, when they were commissioned to create the intermission music for the Grateful Dead’s 50th-anniversary Fare Thee Well celebration.EXCLUSIVE: Neal Casal Talks CRB, LSD, & The Future Of Circles Around The SunLive For Live Music had a writer scheduled to review the show, though he unexpectedly had to leave Circles Around The Sun’s performance early. However, despite not being able to stay for the whole night, the writer (who is choosing to remain anonymous) wanted to make sure he still sent us in some form of coverage. Thus, he’s sent us a collection of fourteen haikus that he feels encapsulates his experience at Circles Around The Sun’s and Grateful Shred‘s show-opener at the Troubadour. Enjoy. (You can also listen to full audio of the performance, courtesy of taper DMan, and check out a gallery of photos, courtesy of Brandon Weil, below.)[Audio: DMan]Grateful Shred my headPlaying tunes of old anewCaptured me tonightOh, what could they do?A lot, pleasantly we seeThis band knows its stuffSlip Knot to beginHelp On the Way satiatesAmazing FranklinGoing to the southBig River, weeping willowAlthea, we lovePlaying in the Band, Stephen prospered in his time, He’s a holy manPlaying for the lumpThe one that is on my headGrateful I am dead.And to close it outLoose Lucy is our delightThese guys were damn greatWhat to follow upCircles Around the Sun nextHow would they beginWest LA people Love West LA Fade Away New spin on this jam Fire on the mountainInspired the next dittyRosalie you fineThese guys love to jamGuitar, melodic to hearThe synth, en fugeoOld fashioned light show Psychedelic projectionsChris Kuroda proudAlthea came backThis time, a new lease on lifeMade it their own thingLet’s take it all inSo much to appreciate Fantastic eveningCircles Around The Sun | The Troubadour | Hollywood, CA | 1/5/2018 | Photo: Brandon Weil
The Netherlands’ industry-wide pension fund for construction workers, BpfBouw, is eating into its funding surplus because its contribution rates were set too low, according to its chair. Contributions for the construction scheme will have to increase as they do not cover the running costs, the board said in its 2018 annual report. Unions and employers in the construction industry would have to agree on a new funding arrangement, it said.“We cannot continue like this,” said Mieke van Veldhuizen, chair of the board of the €52.8bn scheme, who represents employees.According to the annual report, BpfBouw’s coverage ratio fell by approximately one percentage point last year, although it subsequently rebounded to 115.7% at the end of March 2019. A declining coverage ratio reduces the chance of pensions being indexed. The scheme has not been able to raise pensions in line with inflation for years. As a result, pensioners have lost around 9% of the purchasing power on their pensions.“It is up to social partners to determine the contribution level,” Van Veldhuizen said. “It is up to us to determine whether we can manage pensions in a balanced way. We have stated that we cannot go on like this for years. Because of the low contributions, we are eating into the coverage ratio and thereby disadvantaging pensioners.”BpfBouw has added its voice to those of metal and engineering sector funds PME and PMT, which have already warned that the current contribution levels are too low and should probably rise next year. The only alternative to a contribution increase would be a reduction in accrued pensions.The effects of a planned new pension system – which is still being hotly debated in the Netherlands – are difficult to estimate. Until an agreement is reached, the current rules need to be applied.BpfBouw is the fourth-largest pension fund in the Netherlands and the only one of the Dutch ‘big five’ that is not at immediate risk of having to lower its pension payouts, due to its healthy funding position. After years of stagnation, the scheme has been able to partly index pensions in the past couple of years to keep up with price inflation.
Philip Doyle’s side then ran away with the second half, scoring 26 unanswered points including a penalty try plus scores for Siobhan Fleming, Lynch again and Vikki McGinn. Ireland advanced to the semi-finals of the Women’s Rugby World Cup for the first time in their history with a convincing 40-5 victory over Kazakhstan in Marcoussis. Press Association Having shocked four-time champions New Zealand 17-14 in midweek, the Irish knew another win on Saturday would see them finish top of Pool B with a 100 per cent record. And they proved too strong for Kazakhstan, who had lost both their opening group games and trailed 14-5 at the interval with debutant Sharon Lynch and Tania Rosser dotting down either side of a Svetlana Karatygina try.
Even though Cormier no longer plans on retiring when he turns 40 next month, the current heavyweight champion isn’t going to stick around too much longer, which would clear a path for a healthy, active Velasquez to once again challenge for championship gold, but that’s getting ahead of ourselves.First, let’s see what he looks like this weekend against Ngannou and whether he can emerge with a clean bill of health.If he clears those two major hurdles, then we can start discussing whether 2019 is the year Cain Velasquez returns full-time to potentially fulfill his destiny as the greatest heavyweight in UFC history. Join DAZN and watch Paul Daley vs. Michael Page at Bellator 216 on Feb. 16Unfortunately, it’s a familiar position to be in when it comes to Velasquez, as the now 36-year-old heavyweight has spent far more time dealing with injuries and extended absences over the last half-decade than he has contending with actual opponents.Velasquez has fought just twice in the last five-plus years, as his triumphant return at UFC 200 came after a 13-month layoff following his submission loss to Fabricio Werdum at UFC 188 in Mexico City. That fight was preceded by a 20-month hiatus that started after he wrapped up his rubber match with Junior dos Santos in convincing fashion at UFC 166.It seems absurd even as I write it — going three fights back on Velasquez’s resume takes us all the way to October 2013, when Lorde burst onto the music scene with “Royals” and her debut album Pure Heroine and Gravity was enjoying another week atop the box office charts.To put it into perspective, the whole of Ngannou’s UFC career has transpired in the time since Velasquez’s loss to Werdum, with “The Predator” making nine appearances in the Octagon to the former champion’s one.Between the injuries and the layoffs, there is no way to know how Velasquez will look on Sunday because while he showed no signs of rust or decline when taking Browne to the woodshed at the UFC’s bicentennial show, that was still well over two years ago and not only is he that much older, but he’s also stepping in with one of the most dangerous threats in the division.But as Velasquez’s return draws closer, it’s impossible not to wonder what the landscape of the heavyweight division might look like had the ultra-talented former champion not lost so much time to injuries.A Dominant ForceBefore delving into what might have been, we first have to remember what we know to be true and that is that for a two-year, four-fight stretch between his losses to dos Santos and Werdum, Cain Velasquez was one of the most dominant forces to ever grace the heavyweight division.Velasquez was a new breed of heavyweights — a 240-pound attack dog with the skill set and conditioning of a lightweight. Sure, he could knock you out with a single clubbing blow like the majority of elite heavyweight competitors, but he could also bury you with volume, maintaining a ridiculous pace for a man his size, all the while threatening to dump you to the canvas and maul you from top position as he did Silva, twice.He was heralded as a something different when he arrived in the UFC with a first-round finish of Brad Morris at UFC 83 and validated his advanced billing by steamrolling the competition on the way to snatching the heavyweight title from Brock Lesnar in a one-sided beatdown that lasted four minutes and change at UFC 121.Even after losing the belt to dos Santos in November 2011, Velasquez returned to re-affirm his standing as the best heavyweight in the sport over the next two years. In twin fights with both Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva and dos Santos, the former Arizona State Sun Devil crippled the wills and stole the souls of the two Brazilians.Silva was never the same fighter following his second fight to Velasquez, which lasted just 81 seconds, while “Cigano” alternated wins and losses over his next four appearances, battling myriad injuries of his own. It wasn’t until the second half of this year that the former champion returned to looking like a potential title threat.Unfortunately for Velasquez, he would spend the better part of the next two years on the sidelines before losing the heavyweight title to Werdum, followed by another extended layoff before returning to beat Browne.Even then, despite all the time off, the numerous surgeries and various other injuries, Velasquez still looked like a force to be reckoned with in the heavyweight division.What Might Have BeenGiven that he’s never been anything other than a champion or elite contender over the last decade, let’s start by agreeing that had Velasquez remained healthy and active in the time since his title loss to Werdum at UFC 188, he would have remained in the championship conversation.His performance against Browne is the only evidence needed to support this assumption.That puts Velasquez competing against the likes of Werdum, Stipe Miocic, dos Santos, and Alistair Overeem, with the possibility of him facing newer additions to the contender class like Ngannou, Curtis Blaydes, Derrick Lewis or Alexander Volkov as well.His history with dos Santos plays a big part in trying to determine what the division may have looked like had Velasquez been active because while the possibility existed, as it does for every heavyweight and every fighter, that he could get caught with something that puts him down, the truth is that Velasquez would have been no worse than a coin flip against all of the top competitors in the division.A rematch with Werdum never materialized and would have been truly compelling, as the Brazilian’s submission skills would have given Velasquez pause when it comes to pursuing takedowns, especially given how their first encounter ended. That said, a healthy Velasquez was far quicker, far sharper and more of a finisher on the feet than Werdum, so meeting him in the center of the cage and turning it into a slugfest would have been a viable strategy.Overeem would have been the inverse of Werdum — a threat on the feet thanks to his assorted weapons, quickness and power, but could he had prevented Velasquez from bullying him the way he did dos Santos in their second and third meetings? It would have been an interesting pairing, but chances are bettors would install Velasquez as a clear favorite.The most intriguing matchup of the bunch is a potential pairing with Miocic, who took over as the division’s well-rounded cardio freak in Velasquez’s stead and possesses the talents and intangibles to match the former titleholder shot-for-shot. In another lifetime, they could have been what the UFC envisioned Velasquez and dos Santos being — the well-matched rivals who pushed it each other to new heights, trading the title back-and-forth in a series of massive pay-per-view main events.As for the new crop of contenders, the results of some of their most recent outings illustrate how hypothetical encounters with Velasquez would have most likely played out.Against Ngannou and Lewis, he replicates the tactics deployed by Miocic and Daniel Cormier, respectively, wrestling each to the canvas and working them over where they’re least comfortable. The same goes for Volkov, who struggled in a clinch-heavy contest with Timothy Johnson. While Blaydes has the wrestling pedigree to potentially stop an onslaught of takedowns, he’s still too hittable to hang with powerful heavyweights on the feet, so a slightly less violent, less rapid replica of his losses to Ngannou serves as a pretty sound template for the approach Velasquez would take.The Daniel Cormier RippleThe most interesting part of a hypothetical “What if Cain stayed healthy?” thought exercise is trying to figure out what becomes of his close friend and training partner Daniel Cormier?“DC” famously departed the heavyweight division in order to stay out of Velasquez’s lane, despite being 13-0 and looking like a mortal lock to eventually challenge for the heavyweight title. With Cain out of the picture, Cormier made the move back to heavyweight last year for a superfight with Miocic, claiming the heavyweight title and successfully defending it against Lewis at UFC 230 in New York City.Now as Velasquez prepares to return, Cormier is once again serving as his biggest cheerleader, telling anyone who will listen that Velasquez is the same fast, strong marauder that once dominated the division.But had he not been limited to just one appearance since losing the belt to Werdum, Cormier’s current situation likely never would have come to pass.Maybe they would have sat down and talked about Cormier returning to the division, depending on whether or not Velasquez had the title and the results he had against the other top contenders, but a healthy Velasquez being in the thick of the title chase or reclaiming the throne probably results in Cormier staying at light heavyweight and never becoming the “Double Champ.”Current Legacy and What’s Still to ComeRight now, Velasquez is the Bill Walton of UFC heavyweights — a dominant force, but someone whose brilliant career was beset by injuries and ultimately cut short.He’s a two-time champion with victories over divisional stalwarts like Cheick Kongo, Ben Rothwell, and “Bigfoot” Silva, as well as former champions “Minotauro” Nogueira, Brock Lesnar and Junior dos Santos. He was the prototype for a new wave of heavyweights — a little smaller with well-rounded striking, excellent wrestling, smooth footwork and elite conditioning. He was a nightmare matchup who could beat you in numerous ways and whose only career losses came in championship fights where he was dealing with injuries.Although it’s impossible to say for sure what the heavyweight division might have looked like had Velasquez remained healthy, his return this weekend against Ngannou is an obvious peak into what might have been.Despite returning from a 952-day layoff, Velasquez is nearly a 2-1 favorite heading into Sunday’s main event and a victory over Ngannou, who rebounded from poor showings against Miocic and Lewis with a 45-second knockout win in November, would put him right back into the thick of the title conversation. 952 days — that’s how long it will have been since Cain Velasquez last set foot inside the UFC Octagon by the time he marches to the cage to face Francis Ngannou on Sunday night in Phoenix, Arizona.Two years, six months and 16 days will have passed since the former heavyweight champion collected a first-round stoppage win over Travis Browne at UFC 200 and as he readies to return, there is absolutely no way to know with any certainty what to expect from the American Kickboxing Academy product.
Stand-in captain Suresh Raina is happy that the new-look Indian team that got very little time to prepare for the West Indies series have produced results.India beat West Indies by three wickets here to clinch the five-match ODI series 3-0.”God has been very kind to all the boys. Credit goes to Duncan Fletcher, Eric Simmons and the other support staff. We have gelled well as a team. We didn’t get much time for preparation after IPL. We came here and had a few quality team meetings and practice sessions. That helped us,” Raina said at the post-match presentation ceremony.The Indian captain was all praise for man-of-the-match Andre Russell who scored an unbeaten 64-ball 92. “Russell played some amazing shots. Credit goes to Amit Mishra for bowling well.”Raina believes that Mishra may have role to play in the upcoming Test series. “We have the Tests coming up. These tracks are helpful for leggies and he (Mishra) has been among the wickets in the IPL and against South Africa as well.”The skipper admitted to having a bad shots and some of the shot selections weren’t upto the mark.”I played a bad shot, but Rohit and Harbhajan batted really well. Rohit has been in good form in the series having got his second fifty. I hope that he would do well in the remaining matches also.”Raina indicated that the likes of Manoj Tiwary, Ranganath Vinay Kumar and Ravichandran Ashwin are likely to be inducted in the first XI for the remaining few matches.advertisement”We have a couple of guys sitting on the bench. I hope everyone gets a chance in the last two games.” .West Indies captain Darren Sammy blamed the lack of “killer instict” being one of the reasons for the team not being able to win despite reducing India to 92 for six.”It is a game that got away from us. Russell brought us back along with Baugh. Our guys were confident during lunch, but we lacked the killer instinct after taking early wickets,” Sammy stated.He admitted that the batsmen haven’t performing upto the mark. About his team’s bowling, he did say that he expected a bit more from fast bowler Kemar Roach.”We have not been getting runs at the top. We just lacked the finishing touch. About our bowling, Kemar is one of our strike bowlers and we needed a bit extra from him. But I can’t fault anyone, he has been doing a good job over the past months. If you put the ball in the right areas, you could reap rewards on this wicket.”Man of the match Andre Russell stated that he was posituve from the very beginning. “Myself and Carlton Baugh told each other that we should try to just bat as long as possible. I take my batting seriously although I would consider myself as a bowling all-rounder. I am trying to balance both departments as I want to be called a legend once I retire from international cricket.”- With inputs from PTI
Eusebio Di Francesco rued Roma’s inexperience to pick the right ball after finding their rhythm in the 1-0 loss to JuventusEusebio’s men were beaten in Turin by a Mario Mandzukic header courtesy of a Mattia De Sciglio’s cross. But the Italian manager claimed his men were nervous in the encounter“We were too nervous and insecure in the first half, but in the second we accepted the duels and took control of the ball,” the Coach told Football Italia via DAZN.“We had some good forward moves and just lacked the final ball. The difference between us and them is that Juve had shots on goal. I remain happy with the reaction that the team showed.Chris Smalling open to a permanent AS Roma deal Andrew Smyth – September 6, 2019 Chris Smalling can “definitely see a longer-term future” for himself at AS Roma should things work out on his loan spell from Manchester United.“I wanted to create more density in the midfield, giving Aleksandar Kolarov the chance to start moves from the back. We wanted a stronger physical impact, but we did well in some moments and less well in others.“The positives we take from this match are the attitude and the desire to play one-against-one all over the pitch. We just didn’t finish off our chances, but keeping Juve pinned back in their own half is no mean feat. Unfortunately, we lack the nous and experience to pick the right ball.”Patrik Schick was again utterly ineffective in attack, failing to make any real impact.“We all expect more. It was not easy for him today, but we do expect him to have more shots on goal. In some situations, he could’ve attacked the space better.”
Ed Lenderman, January 1, 2019 00:00 00:00 spaceplay / pause qunload | stop ffullscreenshift + ←→slower / faster ↑↓volume mmute ←→seek . seek to previous 12… 6 seek to 10%, 20% … 60% XColor SettingsAaAaAaAaTextBackgroundOpacity SettingsTextOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundSemi-TransparentOpaqueTransparentFont SettingsSize||TypeSerif MonospaceSerifSans Serif MonospaceSans SerifCasualCursiveSmallCapsResetSave SettingsSAN DIEGO (KUSI) – A winter bike ride of 2426-miles to Jacksonville, Florida would be difficult enough, even with a support team. But this is a strictly solo journey: No team, no trailing van. More on that aspect in a moment.Because there was plenty of send-off support for Thomas Pitman in the early morning hours of New Year’s Day at the trip’s starting point, Imperial Beach.Family, friends, CalFire collegues, Pitman’s girlfriend. And most importantly, Ashley Iverson, widow of local CalFire Firefighter Corey Iverson. Iverson was killed in the in the devastating Thomas Fire in Ventura County in December of 2017.Ashley then started a foundation in his name. The Iverson Foundation for Active Awareness raises awareness of First Responders’ mental health issues, including PTSD. Iverson and Pitman became buddies when they were part of a Heli-Attack Team in Riverside.Pitman, an avid cyclist thought it was only fitting that he honor his friend by raising awareness of the Foundation and it’s mission, by riding across the country. “Thee community supports us tremendously,” he told me, “but that’s kinda where it stops, so we’re trying to raise awareness to continue that support.”He also hopes to raise a like money amount based on the mileage.As for the aforementioned difficulty of a solo ride, which the public can follow on the Foundation’s Facebook page: “Part of my goal is to suffer metaphorically with people who suffer from PTSD. They struggle everyday, so for me to struggle along the ride I thought would be a great idea.And then, Thomas Pittman was off on his month-long ride, appropriately titled, “Ride Into The Light.” Updated: 9:43 AM Ed Lenderman Posted: January 1, 2019 Cross country ride honors fallen firefighter Categories: Local San Diego News FacebookTwitter
Explore further This observation has led researchers to ask how evolution may have selected for personality variation within a species. A team from the UK has recently suggested a novel yet simple answer: that variation begets variation. They explain how there is no single ideal personality (as there is an ideal hand or eye, which we all share), but nature instead promotes different personalities.In their recent study, John McNamara, Philip Stephens, and Alasdair Houston from the University of Bristol, and Sasha Dall of the University of Exeter, Cornwall Campus, explain how natural selection can prevent individuals in a species from evolving toward a single optimum personality, using a game theory scenario. In their study, the researchers focus on the evolution of trust and trustworthiness. The game scenario they use is a variant of the Prisoner’s Dilemma. First, Player 1 chooses to trust or not trust Player 2. Not trusting gives Player 1 a small payoff, and Player 2 gets nothing. If Player 1 trusts Player 2, and Player 2 is trustworthy, then both players receive the same medium-size payoff. But if Player 1 trusts Player 2, and Player 2 isn’t trustworthy, Player 1 receives nothing, and Player 2 receives the maximum pay-off. In other words, Player 1 takes a risk if choosing to trust Player 2.At this point, it seems that Player 2 should always choose to be untrustworthy, so that he always receives the maximum payoff. However, as in real life, the game is iterative. And – this is the important factor – Player 1 can do some background research on Player 2, and find out how often Player 2 has been trustworthy in the past. If Player 2 has a record of being untrustworthy, then Player 1 probably won’t trust him. This “social awareness” comes at a cost for Player 1, so Player 1 must decide if the cost is worth the information. If a population of Player 2’s has variation in its records of trustworthiness, then Player 1 could learn useful information by learning a Player 2’s history. (Realistic methods of acquiring information include, for example, talking to third parties or observing facial expression.) But if a Player 2 population generally has the same records, then the cost of social awareness wouldn’t be worthwhile for Player 1. Who you gonna trust? How power affects our faith in others In simulations with multiple players, individual patterns of trust and trustworthiness were allowed to evolve freely. By watching simulations of the game, the researchers found that the Player 2 population evolved variability in trustworthiness in response to sampling by the Player 1 population. For the Player 2 population, variation was the best strategy for gaining the trust of Player 1, and then exploiting that trust to maximize their pay-off on occasion. This variation, in turn, meant that Player 1 could gain helpful information by paying the cost of being socially aware – which, once again, provoked more variation in the Player 2 population. The researchers noted several interesting results of the game. If the Player 1 population was too trusting, the Player 2 population exploited that, and became less trustworthy. Dall said the team was pleasantly surprised by two results: that the model predicted behavioral variation in both player types, and also predicted two distinct variation patterns for Player 2’s behavior. “Not only were we able to explain why variation should be maintained as social interactions become more extensive, we were able to explain how discrete behavioral types might evolve in otherwise continuous behavioral traits,” Dall said to PhysOrg.com.As he elaborated, the presence of a few socially aware Player 1’s will not only keep the Player 2’s in check, but also allow for more variation among Player 1’s. “You only need a certain number of samplers to enforce trustworthy Player 2 behavior, and so there will be a limit to the numbers of samplers that will be maintained by selection. Once samplers are common enough, everyone else should adopt unconditional, cost-free Player 1 behavior.” In other words, some Player 1’s will always trust, while other Player 1’s will never trust one another.As the researchers concluded, even though this study focuses on a specific model, the general finding that variation begets variation in social contexts has broad implications for understanding evolution and game theory. Past results in game theory have discovered individual differences in trust and trustworthiness, and now studies like this one help to explain this variation. This study and others also show that evolutionary game theorists cannot ignore the importance of individual variation in their models. Meanwhile, the researchers will continue to investigate exactly why we have different personalities.“More generally, the question of ‘why personality variation evolves’ requires a more complex answer, which we’re only just starting to unravel as evolutionary biologists,” Dall said. “The chances are that there isn’t just one reason, and which particular reason is relevant depends on the context. So far, our social awareness reason is one of the few that has been proposed to explain variation in a cooperative context. Social awareness also appears to work in an aggressive context: individuals adopt consistent levels of aggression to avoid getting in real fights, since if someone can predict you’re going to be aggressive, they will avoid provoking you; individual differences arise via frequency dependence again, as the more aggression there is around you, the less you should bother fighting – this is the famous Hawk-Dove game outcome.”More information: McNamara, John M.; Stephens, Philip A.; Dall, Sasha R. X.; Houston, Alasdair I. “Evolution of trust and trustworthiness: social awareness favours personality differences.” Proceedings of the Royal Society, doi:10.1098/rspb.2008.1182.Copyright 2008 PhysOrg.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in whole or part without the express written permission of PhysOrg.com. (PhysOrg.com) — Although members of the same species share more than 99 percent of their genetic makeup, individuals often have small differences, such as in their appearance, susceptibility to disease, and life expectancy. Another difference, one that has gone overlooked from the evolutionary perspective, is personality variation. Even identical twins can have personality types at opposite ends of the spectrum. The researchers performed simulations of the above game to understand how behavior variation evolves in a population. Player 1 (P1) chooses to trust or not trust Player 2 (P2). If trusted, P2 chooses to take advantage of P1 to gain a higher pay-off, or be trustworthy. The pay-off relation is 0 < s < r < 1. P1’s cost of sampling P2 is c, where 0 < c < s. Image credit: J. M. McNamara et al. ©2008 The Royal Society. Citation: Study Shows How We Evolved Different Personalities (2008, November 13) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2008-11-evolved-personalities.html This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.
The final report and study recommends a long terms solution to the hypoxic conditions present in the Mississippi River Basin and the Northern Gulf of Mexico. The proposed plan to reduce nutrient discharges across the river basin and ecological water will take up to a decade to realize a difference in water quality downstream in the gulf. Nine states; Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Mississippi, Missouri, Ohio and Tennessee contribute three-fourths of the phosphorous and nitrogen discharged into the Gulf of Mexico, according to the American Chemical Society study by Anderson et. al. 2008. WTSB recommends a targeted approach to curb nutrient discharges by prioritizing intervention at the highest nutrient loading areas by directing conservation in watershed areas located in the river basin area. As a corollary objective the EPA and Department of Agriculture should identify specific areas within watersheds where the expenditure of funds and resources will have the highest probability of achieving a positive result. WTSB suggests EPA and the Department of Agriculture establish a Nutrient Control Implementation Initiative, (NCII) and a new Mississippi River Basin Water Quality Center. The WTSB further recommends certain goals for evaluating, demonstrating and creating an institutional model for local, state and federal counterparts to share research and their efforts to control nutrient discharges. WTSB recommends that Municipal and industrial point dischargers should be required as a condition to their permit under the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System to monitor phosphorous and nitrogen levels. Further,WTSB recommends a cost analysis of community and governmental efforts of various nutrient control actions. Lastly, conduct a pilot project and compile and disseminate a best practices guidelines.According to the report, the most significant task for improving water quality everywhere, but in particular the Mississippi River Basin comes from nonpoint source pollutants derived from runoff flowing across agricultural land, forests, urban lawns, streets and other paved areas. The primary culprit for this region is the use of nitrogen and phosphorous based fertilizers used in agriculture. A relatively recent change in land use including subsurface drainage, increase demand for commodities and use of fertilizers with added boosts of phosphorous and nitrogen has made the most significant impact in nutrient pollution in the region. Row crops like soybeans and corn contribute 25-percent phosphorous and 52-percent nitrogen of all nutrients in the Gulf of Mexico. Pasture and range land is the next highest source of nutrient discharge with a combined discharge of 42-percent, ‘other crops’ discharge approximately 32-percent of all nutrients with ‘urban and population’ contributing 21-percent. The least nutrient discharger is ‘natural land’ and atmospheric conditions contribute only nitrogen at a rate of about 16-percent.The report states that unequivocal and decisive action is necessary for the implementation of its recommendations. For years the region has languished in a state of inertia due to a variety of reasons. Some reasons simply lack awareness of the current scientific knowledge gathered by the USGS SPARROW modeling team identifying sources and related work developing an adaptive management paradigm. More importantly, the expansive, complex, ecosystem combined with an ever fluctuating human factor will never have a perfect approach. The quest for perfection has in effect resulted in no action whatsoever to ameliorate the deteriorating conditions. Other objections by some include a lack of knowledge of the level of reduction of nutrient discharges it would take to improve water quality. The report finds that whether the recommended Mississippi River Basin Water Quality Center uses the EPA’s 45-percent reduction of nutrient discharges or 20 to 30-percent reduction in nutrient discharges is not the pivotal question. A dramatic reduction in phosphorous and nitrogen is necessary now. Other objections include state and federal conflicts, leadership and other bureaucratic turf wars for funding.The report concludes that the Clean Water Act has broad authority and overlapping authority with the states concerning nutrient use and discharge into the region. Governmental agencies and non-profit association do have access to resources including conservation and remediation funding. The recommended Mississippi River Water Quality Center would serve as the vehicle to incorporate federal, state, private sector, NGOs and interested citizens in the creation of an overall plan of action. The report indicates that the current state of inertia is not an option.Source:Nutrient Control Actions for Improving Water Quality in the Mississippi River Basin and Northern Gulf of Mexico (2009),Water Science and Technology Board (WSTB)© 2009 PhysOrg.com Explore further Stronger EPA leadership needed to improve water quality in Mississippi River Phosphorous Delivered to Gulf of Mexico. Courtesy of USGS This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Hypoxia is caused by an excess discharge of nutrients, in particular phosphorous and nitrogen into a waterway. A chain of naturally occurring events take place which include widespread algae blooms and ends with the decomposition of the dead algae blooms which in turn depletes dissolved oxygen from the water column causing hypoxia in the Northern Gulf of Mexico and Mississippi River Basin. The hypoxic conditions and related nutrient pollutants in the basin region literally chokes the oxygen from the waterway causing fish kills and potential toxic effects to humans and fish alike. The problem has increased dramatically over the past decades for varying reasons including changing land use,urbanization and the introduction of new varieties of agricultural products.According to the study, “Nutrient Control Actions for Improving Water Quality in the Mississippi River Basin and Northern Gulf of Mexico, 2009” data compiled since 1985 of the region is complicated by the fact that the source of phosphorous and nitrogen discharges are attributable to numerous watersheds and tributaries involving a huge land mass spanning 31 states, covering approximately 41-percent of the conterminous land in the United States with multiple governmental authorities responsible for managing the Mississippi River Basin leading to the Gulf of Mexico. Cooperative efforts between state, federal and cross-discipline regulatory schemes (ie. water quality and nutrient control) was key in the assessment of downstream effects and analysis of decades of data in order to create the WTSB recommendations. The plan for implementation was produced by the National Research Council, WTSB at the behest of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Department of Agriculture with the objective of implementing the Clean Water Act. The specific charge of the request was to advise the EPA in the following areas: 1) initiate nutrient pollutant control programs; 2) identifying alternatives for allocating nutrient load reductions across the river basin and 3) documenting the effectiveness of pollutant loading reduction strategies on the gulf hypoxic zone and state designated uses. Special committees were formed and met during the last half of 2008 under the auspices of the WTSB. Citation: The Mighty Mississippi Basin and Gulf Suffocating: Inertia Not An Option (2009, July 27) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2009-07-mighty-mississippi-basin-gulf-suffocating.html The Water Science and Technology Board, (WTSB), Division on Earth and Life Sciences of the National Research Council has released for publication its study for improving water quality in the Mississippi River Basin and Northern Gulf of Mexico. The purpose of the study was to create an action plan for reducing nutrient load in the effected areas causing low levels of oxygen and creating a condition called hypoxia.