Denmark to develop digital passport proving vaccinations

first_imgCOPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) — Denmark’s government is developing a digital passport that would show whether people have been vaccinated against the coronavirus. The idea is that the passport would allow people to travel and could help the government ease restrictions on public life. The finance minister said Wednesday that “in three-four months, a digital corona passport will be ready for use in, for example, business travel.” He said “it is absolutely crucial for us to be able to restart Danish society so that companies can get back on track.” The EU says it is looking into various proposals for similar systems to help travel.last_img

March Freeze Hits Georgia Crops Hard

first_imgA month after a bitter early-February freeze, Georgia farmers have taken it on the chinagain. Another deep freeze and damaging winds blasted the state’s vegetable, fruit andgrain crops March 8-9.”Every county, every field and every stage of Vidalia onions have been hurt,”said Rick Hartley, Toombs County director of the University of Georgia Extension Service.”The total impact to Georgia’s economy could exceed $100 million in losses.”Hartley said freeze itself may not have badly damaged Vidalia onions.”The onions are alive but suffered extreme damage to their leaves,” he said.”The wind and sand caused more physical damage than the cold, but the cold damagewon’t be visible for several weeks.”Even onions that stay healthy may be lost in the end, Hartley said.”March temperatures of 20 degrees and a chill factor of zero degrees generallytrigger the reproductive mechanism in Vidalia onions,” he said. “This causesthem to flower,” he said. “And onions which flower aren’t consideredharvestable.”Vidalia onion farmers “could lose as much as $50 million,” Hartley said, ifthe seed stems show up as growers fear. “They’ve already lost half of a 14,000-acrecrop.”Terry Kelley, an Extension vegetable specialist in Tifton, agreed that the seed-stemthreat is Vidalia onion growers’ main concern from the latest freeze.”But I’m still concerned that it may have hurt us worse than we think,” hesaid. “I don’t think we’ve seen all the damage yet from the February freeze.”The freeze hit other vegetables hard, too.”Much of the mustard and turnip greens were replanted after the last freeze,”Kelley said. “As young and tender as these plants were, we could see someproblems.”Collards, cabbage and kale crops were also damaged, he said, but not as much as themustard and turnips. Like onions, collards and cabbage may have problems with floweringlater.”We’re going to have a later crop of just about every winter vegetable,” hesaid. “We just haven’t had the temperatures for development.”The state’s peaches will be hard-pressed to appear as more than a shadow of a normalcrop.”What percent of a crop we’ll have, we don’t know,” said M.E.”Butch” Ferree, an Extension peach specialist in Fort Valley. “Somevarieties are totally wiped out, and we can find buds on others.”Assessing the peach crop damage is tough, he said.”It’s not easy to see. We have to look at a tiny flower,” he said. “Andit’s a miracle that we’ve got something to look at, with the weather we’ve had.”It will be a few days before we can know the damage any better,” he said.”And then we’ve got four more weeks of weather that could hurt us. We don’t feel likewe’re out of the woods until Easter.”Brooks County Extension Director Johnny Whiddon, whose farmers are among the state’stop peach growers, said losses would likely be heavy.”We really won’t know until the blooms that were killed fall off and we can get abetter look at it,” Whiddon said. “But the best projection we can make right nowputs (Brooks County) losses at 75 percent to 80 percent.”Dewey Lee, an Extension grains specialist in Tifton, said the state’s wheat cropappears to have been damaged.”We won’t know for several more days exactly how much of the crop was hurt,”he said.Wheat plants with grain heads eight to 10 inches above the soil were most affected.”It’s most likely the grain heads froze,” he said. Once they freeze, they die.But wheat is able to make up for lost grain heads. “Just because we lose, forexample, 80 percent of the grain heads from freezing,” he said, “doesn’tmean we’ll lose the same percentage of our yield.”last_img read more

Wolf Administration Announces Denial of Appeal for Disaster Declaration Request

first_img SHARE Email Facebook Twitter Wolf Administration Announces Denial of Appeal for Disaster Declaration Request National Issues,  Press Release,  Weather Safety Harrisburg, PA – Governor Tom Wolf today announced that the President has denied his appeal for a federal disaster declaration that would have brought critical financial assistance to nine counties impacted by a crippling snowstorm in March.“At this point, we have exhausted our options for filing an appeal through the Federal Emergency Management Agency,” Governor Wolf said. “It’s unfortunate that the President didn’t grant our request for a declaration, and the citizens of northeast Pennsylvania will be the ones to suffer the financial impact of this decision.”The governor made the initial request for a disaster declaration in May and filed an appeal earlier this month in order to provide federal funding to local, county and state governments, as well as certain eligible non-profits in Bradford, Lackawanna, Luzerne, Susquehanna, Wyoming, Northumberland, Pike, Wayne and Montour counties through the Public Assistance program.According to the letter signed by Acting FEMA Administrator Robert J. Fenton, “After a thorough review of all the information contained in your initial request and appeal, we reaffirm our original findings that the impact from this event is not of the severity and magnitude that warrants a major disaster declaration. Therefore, I must inform you that your appeal for a major disaster declaration is denied.”In his letter filing the appeal, Governor Wolf cited: decreased revenues at the state and county levels; hazardous road conditions due to record or near-record snowfalls; excessive costs for plowing, hauling and disposing the crippling amounts of snow from the storm; major challenges to first responders in supporting basic and event-related emergency services as well as disaster response needs at the municipal and county level; and mobilization of a variety of local and volunteer resources to address public safety and emergency needs of citizens.A federal disaster declaration for Public Assistance would provide reimbursement of up to 75% of the costs incurred on eligible expenses for the eligible 48-hour time period.center_img June 13, 2017last_img read more