Written by Alan Buis
Pasadena, CA – About 60 percent of California is experiencing “exceptional drought,” the U.S. Drought Monitor’s most dire classification. The agency issued the same warning to Texas and the southeastern United States in 2012. California’s last two winters have been among the driest since records began in 1879. Without enough water in the soil, seeds can’t sprout roots, leaves can’t perform photosynthesis, and agriculture can’t be sustained.
Currently, there is no ground- or satellite-based global network monitoring soil moisture at a local level. Farmers, scientists and resource managers can place sensors in the ground, but these only provide spot measurements and are rare across some critical agricultural areas in Africa, Asia and Latin America.
Tennessee Department of Agriculture reports seven additional Counties quarantined for Emerald ash borer
Nashville, TN – A quarantine for Emerald Ash Borer (EAB), an invasive insect that destroys ash trees, has been expanded to seven additional counties in Middle and East Tennessee. Clay, Fentress, Macon, Morgan, Overton, Pickett, and Rhea counties have been added to the list of areas restricted for the movement of ash trees and ash tree products.
This brings the total number of Tennessee counties under a state and federal EAB quarantine to 34.
Clarksville, TN – A few years ago, three tall, flowering cherry trees grew on the western side of Austin Peay State University’s Sundquist Science Complex. They provided a nice, welcoming entry into the building, but in 2007, Tennessee suffered from a record-setting drought.
Temperatures reached 113 degrees Fahrenheit that summer, and by the fall, the 20-foot tall trees were dead.
Nashville, TN – The Tennessee Department of Health is investigating the first potential cases of chikungunya in the state. Multiple people from Tennessee recently traveled to the Caribbean, where the illness is now a widespread epidemic with over 100,000 suspected cases.
Some of the recent travelers from Tennessee now have symptoms of the illness.
Tennessee Department of Agriculture reports Putnam County and Five additional East Tennessee Counties quarantined for Emerald ash borer
Nashville, TN – A quarantine for Emerald Ash Borer, an invasive insect that destroys ash trees has been expanded to include another Middle Tennessee county and five more northeastern Tennessee counties. Putnam, Sullivan, Washington, Unicoi, Carter and Johnson counties have been added to the list of areas restricted for the movement of ash trees and ash tree products.
This brings the total number of Tennessee counties under a state and federal EAB quarantine to 27.
Dallas, TX – Eating more fruits and vegetables may reduce the risk of stroke worldwide, according to new research in the American Heart Association’s journal Stroke.
Researchers conducted a meta-analysis of 20 studies published over the last 19 years to assess the effects of fruit and vegetable consumption on risk of stroke globally. The combined studies involved 760,629 men and women who had 16,981 strokes.
Written by Alan Buis
Pasadena, CA – New NASA research on natural ozone cycles suggests ozone levels in the lowest part of Earth’s atmosphere probably won’t be affected much by projected future strengthening of the circulating winds that transport ozone between Earth’s two lowest atmospheric layers.
The finding is good news, since human and plant health are harmed by exposure to ozone near the ground. Significant increases in ozone in Earth’s lowest atmospheric layer, the troposphere, would also lead to additional climate warming because ozone is a greenhouse gas.
Nashville, TN – Richard S. Steece, PhD, D(ABMM) has been named director of the Tennessee Department of Health’s Division of Laboratory Services. In this position, Steece will direct all TDH microbiology and environmental lab programs and services.
“We are pleased to welcome Dr. Steece to our team,” said TDH Commissioner John Dreyzehner, MD, MPH. “His practical experiences at the regional, national and international levels will serve Tennesseans well.” «Read the rest of this article»
NASA’s Aqua and Terra Spacecraft take images of California Rim Fire endangering Yosemite National Park
Pasadena, CA – The Rim Fire burning in and near Yosemite National Park in California continues to grow and move its way up in the record books. As of August 27th, CAL FIRE (California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection) reports that the fire, which started August 17th, had consumed nearly 180,000 acres, making it the seventh largest wildfire in California’s recorded history.
The fire is one of 10 active major wildfires burning across California as of August 27th.
Nashville, TN – Emerald Ash Borer, an invasive insect that destroys ash trees, has been found in Jackson and Scott counties. The identification was made recently and has been confirmed by USDA.
Both counties will now be placed under quarantine. Earlier this summer, Hamilton County was also placed under quarantine when EAB was found in trees near a rail hub in Chattanooga, TN.
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