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FEMA Awards $1.1 Million to Arkansas for 2012 Christmas Day Storm

FEMA Press Releases - Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:52

DENTON, Texas – More than $1.1 million is being awarded to the state of Arkansas by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to reimburse Saline County for debris removal costs from a 2012 Christmas Day winter storm.

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Categories: Federal News

FEMA Seeks Applicants for National Advisory Council

FEMA Press Releases - Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:18

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is requesting individuals who are interested in serving on the National Advisory Council (NAC) to apply for appointment.  The NAC is an advisory council established to ensure effective and ongoing coordination of federal preparedness, protection, response, recovery, and mitigation for natural disasters, acts of terrorism, and other man-made disasters.

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Categories: Federal News

DNREC Fish and Wildlife Enforcement Blotter Feb. 4 to 10

DNREC News - Tue, 02/18/2014 - 10:45
DOVER (Feb. 14, 2014) – To achieve public compliance through education and enforcement actions that help conserve Delaware’s fish and wildlife resources and ensure safe boating and public safety, DNREC Natural Resources Police, Division of Fish and Wildlife Enforcement Agents between Feb. 4-10 made 400 contacts with anglers, hunters, boaters and the general public, including 14 vessel boardings for boating safety, hunting and fishing regulation compliance checks. Agents responded issued 24 citations.

More volunteers needed for beach grass planting at Delaware Seashore State Park on March 22

DNREC News - Mon, 02/17/2014 - 10:58
SUSSEX COUNTY (Feb. 17, 2014) – More volunteers are needed at Delaware Seashore State Park for Delaware’s annual beach grass planting event set for 9 a.m. to noon on Saturday, March 22. The event, now in its 25th year, helps protect Delaware shorelines by planting Cape American beach grass on sand dunes at beaches along the Delaware Bay and Atlantic Ocean.

DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife announces spring 2014 trout stocking plans for downstate ponds

DNREC News - Fri, 02/14/2014 - 17:19
DOVER (Feb. 14, 2014) – The DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife today announced that its spring 2014 downstate trout season will begin Saturday, March 1 with the opening of two downstate ponds stocked with rainbow trout. On that date, Tidbury Pond near Dover in Kent County and Newton Pond outside of Greenwood in Sussex County will open for trout fishing beginning at 7 a.m.

New York University, NYU Langone Medical Center, SUS-Mental Health receive FEMA grants

FEMA Press Releases - Fri, 02/14/2014 - 13:56

NEW YORK – The Federal Emergency Management Agency has approved Public Assistance grants to New York University, NYU Langone Medical Center and Services for the UnderServed (SUS)-Mental Health Program to reimburse costs for damage caused by Hurricane Sandy.

New York University has been awarded more than $1 million in funding. The grant covered a variety of needs including ensuring students’ safety, protection of campus data, temporary generators and a fuel oil tank.

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Categories: Federal News

$2.4 billion in FEMA Public Assistance grants for Hurricane Sandy recovery

FEMA Press Releases - Fri, 02/14/2014 - 13:48

NEW YORK — Since Hurricane Sandy struck New York, the Federal Emergency Management Agency has approved more than $2.4 billion in Public Assistance grants to reimburse local, state and tribal governments and eligible private nonprofits for costs associated with emergency response, debris removal and repairing or rebuilding public facilities.

Recently approved grants include:

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Categories: Federal News

FEMA supports recovery efforts in Evans

FEMA Press Releases - Fri, 02/14/2014 - 10:53

DENVER – Since the September 2013 floods, the Federal Emergency Management Agency has provided nearly $6.6 million in Individual Assistance to Evans residents and obligated more than $1.4 million in Public Assistance to the City of Evans. At the same time, the U.S. Small Business Administration has provided more than $3.6 million in low-interest loans to 46 Evans homeowners and nine business owners.

As a part of its outreach to the citizens of Evans, FEMA Individual Assistance has provided:

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Categories: Federal News

Delawares 2013 to 2014 deer harvest ranks third all time

DNREC News - Fri, 02/14/2014 - 10:27
DOVER (Feb. 14, 2014) – Delaware hunters harvested 14,263 deer during the 2013-‘14 season, a 7.2 percent increase from the previous season’s 13,302, DNREC’s Division of Fish and Wildlife announced today. The 2013-‘14 deer harvest ranks as the third all-time highest deer harvest for Delaware.

FEMA Federal Regional Center Marks 50 Years of History

FEMA Press Releases - Fri, 02/14/2014 - 10:22


DENTON, Texas –Valentine’s Day, Feb. 14 marks the 50th anniversary of what began as an underground facility designed to survive a nuclear war and provide for the continuity of U.S. government operations. The Federal Regional Center (FRC) was constructed between 1961 and late 1963 on 20 acres in Denton.

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Categories: Federal News

FEMA Awards $351,066 Grant to Villa Grove: Hazard mitigation funds will be used to acquire and demolish nine flood prone structures

FEMA Press Releases - Thu, 02/13/2014 - 14:20

CHICAGO -- The U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has released $351,066 in Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP) funds to Villa Grove, Ill., for the acquisition and demolition of eight residential structures and one public building located in the floodplains of the West Ditch and Embarras River. <?xml:namespace prefix = o />


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Categories: Federal News

Car Preparedness Critical During Winter Months

FEMA Press Releases - Thu, 02/13/2014 - 13:18

LINCROFT, N.J. – The recent winter storm in Atlanta wreaked havoc on traffic and left motorists and vehicles stranded on the city’s highways for days. Many people were forced to stay in their cars overnight, while others abandoned their vehicles to escape the gridlock.

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Categories: Federal News

Multiple Sources Fund Sandy Recovery Efforts

FEMA Press Releases - Thu, 02/13/2014 - 13:11

LINCROFT, N.J. – The Federal Emergency Management Agency receives money from two different and distinct sources to help communities pay for damage caused by Hurricane Sandy in 2012.

FEMA’s primary source of funding is the Disaster Relief Fund (DRF), which was established by the Stafford Act. The DRF is regularly replenished to ensure that money for disaster relief and recovery is always available.

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Categories: Federal News

FEMA Continues to Support Response Efforts to Severe Winter Weather

FEMA Press Releases - Wed, 02/12/2014 - 20:21
Residents Urged to Continue Following Guidance from Local Officials

WASHINGTON – The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) continues to closely coordinate with impacted and potentially impacted states in the path of a severe winter storm, through its National Response Coordination Center in Washington D.C. and its regional offices in Atlanta, Boston, New York City and Philadelphia.

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Categories: Federal News

Federal Aid Programs for the State of South Carolina Emergency Declaration

FEMA Press Releases - Wed, 02/12/2014 - 19:41

Following is a summary of key federal disaster aid programs that can be made available as needed and warranted under President Obama's emergency disaster declaration issued for the State of South Carolina.

Assistance for the State and Affected Local Governments Can Include as Required:

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Categories: Federal News

President Obama Signs South Carolina Emergency Declaration

FEMA Press Releases - Wed, 02/12/2014 - 19:39

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- The U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) announced that federal emergency aid has been made available to the State of South Carolina to supplement state and local response efforts due to the emergency conditions resulting from a severe winter storm on February 10, 2014, and continuing.

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Categories: Federal News

Federal/State Disaster Aid for Colorado Flooding Surpasses $267 Million

FEMA Press Releases - Wed, 02/12/2014 - 13:04

Federal/State Disaster Aid for Colorado Flooding Surpasses $267 Million

DENVER – Since heavy rains brought flooding in September 2013, Colorado survivors have received more than $267 million in federal/state recovery assistance.

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Categories: Federal News

DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife to hold second public workshop Feb 26 on Inland Bays shellfish aquaculture regulations

DNREC News - Wed, 02/12/2014 - 12:20
DOVER (Feb. 12, 2014) – DNREC’s Division of Fish and Wildlife will hold a second public workshop on Delaware’s Inland Bays shellfish aquaculture regulations currently under development at 6 p.m., Wednesday, Feb. 26 at DNREC’s Lewes Field Facility, 901 Pilottown Road, Lewes.

First Global Geologic Map of Largest Moon in the Solar System Details an Icy World

USGS Newsroom - Wed, 02/12/2014 - 12:00

Contact Information:

Dr. Laszlo  P. Kestay ( Phone: 928-556-7002 ); Jennifer LaVista ( Phone: 303-202-4764 );

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. – More than 400 years after its discovery by Galileo, the largest moon in the Solar System – Ganymede – has finally claimed a spot on the map. 

A group of scientists led by Dr. Geoffrey Collins of Wheaton College (Norton, MA) has produced the first global geologic map of Ganymede, Jupiter’s seventh moon. The map, which was published by the U. S. Geological Survey, technically illustrates the varied geologic character of Ganymede’s surface, and is the first complete global geologic map of an icy, outer-planet moon. The geologic map of Ganymede is available for download online.

"After Mars, the interiors of icy satellites of Jupiter are considered the best candidates for habitable environments for life in our Solar System," said USGS Astrogeology Science Center director Laszlo Kestay. "This geologic map will be the basis for many decisions by NASA and partners regarding future U.S. missions under consideration to explore these worlds."

Since its discovery in January 1610, Ganymede has been the focus of repeated observation, first by Earth-based telescopes, and later by fly-by missions and spacecraft orbiting Jupiter. These studies depict a complex icy world whose surface is characterized by the striking contrast between its two major terrain types; the dark, very old, highly cratered regions, and the lighter, somewhat younger (but still ancient) regions marked with an extensive array of grooves and ridges.

"Three major geologic periods have been identified for Ganymede that involve the dominance of impact cratering, then tectonic upheaval, followed by a decline in geologic activity," said USGS research geologist Dr. Ken Tanaka.

The Ganymede geologic map is unique from other planetary geologic maps because it represents, for the first time, named geologic time periods for an object in the outer solar system.

Surface features, such as furrows, grooves, and impact craters, were characterized using a global image mosaic produced by the USGS. This image mosaic combines the best images from NASA’s Voyager 1 and 2 missions (acquired in 1979) as well as the Galileo orbiter (1995-2003).

"The highly detailed, colorful map confirmed a number of outstanding scientific hypotheses regarding Ganymede’s geologic history, and also disproved others," said USGS scientist Baerbel Lucchitta, who has been involved with geologic mapping of Ganymede since 1980. "For example, the more detailed Galileo images showed that cryovolcanism, or the creation of volcanoes that erupt water and ice, is very rare on Ganymede."

The Ganymede global geologic map will enable researchers to compare the geologic characters of other icy satellite moons, because almost any type of feature that is found on other icy satellites has a similar feature somewhere on Ganymede.

"The surface of Ganymede is over half as large as all the land area on Earth, so there is a wide diversity of locations to choose from," said map lead and Wheaton geology professor Geoff Collins. "Ganymede also shows features that are ancient alongside much more recently formed features, adding historical diversity in addition to geographic diversity."

The new geologic map of Ganymede is just one of many cartographic products that help drive scientific thought. The production of these products has been a focal point of research at the USGS Astrogeology Science Center since its inception in the early 1960s. USGS began producing planetary maps in support of the Apollo moon landings, and continues to help establish a framework for integrating and comparing past and future studies of extraterrestrial surfaces. In many cases, these planetary geologic maps show that, despite the many differences between bodies in our Solar System, there are many notable similarities that link the evolution and fate of our planetary system together.

Amateur astronomers can observe Ganymede (with binoculars) in the evening sky this month, as Jupiter is in opposition and easily visible.

An online video, Rotating Globe of Ganymede Geology, is available for viewing.

The project was funded by NASA through its Outer Planets Research and Planetary Geology and Geophysics Programs.

The mission of the USGS Astrogeology Science Center is to serve the Nation, the international planetary science community, and the general public’s pursuit of new knowledge of our Solar System. The Team's vision is to be a national resource for the integration of planetary geosciences, cartography, and remote sensing. As explorers and surveyors, with a unique heritage of proven expertise and international leadership, USGS astrogeologists enable the ongoing successful investigation of the Solar System for humankind.

To present the best information in a single view of Jupiter's moon Ganymede, a global image mosaic was assembled, incorporating the best available imagery from Voyagers 1 and 2 and Galileo spacecraft. This image shows Ganymede centered at 200 West Longitude. This mosaic (right) served as the base map for the geologic map of Ganymede (left). (High resolution image)

Identifying Bats By Sound

USGS Newsroom - Wed, 02/12/2014 - 09:30
Following White-Nose Syndrome, Acoustic Method Best for Sampling Bats

Contact Information:

W. Mark  Ford ( Phone: 304-704-7621 ); Hannah Hamilton ( Phone: 703-648-4356 );

BLACKSBURG, VA. – Recording bats' echolocation "calls" is the most efficient and least intrusive way of identifying different species of bats in a given area, providing insight into some populations that have been decimated by white-nose syndrome.This new research by scientists from Virginia Tech, the U.S. Geological Survey and the U.S. Army is published in the Journal of Ecology and the Natural Environment.

White-nose syndrome, an unprecedented disease of cave hibernating bats caused by a cold-loving fungus, has caused the deaths of more than six million bats. It has spread from central New York to at least 22 states and five Canadian provinces since 2006. In addition to the endangered Indiana bat, populations of the formerly abundant little brown bat and northern long-eared bat have experienced severe disease-related declines, particularly in the Northeast and central Appalachians.

"Acoustic sampling is a noninvasive sampling technique for bats, and its use often allows for the detection of a greater number of bat species in less time than traditional sampling methods such as netting," said study co-author W. Mark Ford, a USGS scientist at the Virginia Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit at Virginia Tech. "Low population numbers make netting both time and cost prohibitive. Netting also has low capture rates for WNS affected species. Moreover, acoustic sampling minimizes the handling of bats, which lessens the chance of unintended cross-contamination and exposure to the white-nose fungus from one bat to another or from equipment and personnel to uninfected bats."

Using acoustic bat detectors, researchers were able to assess the presence of bats by identifying their calls. Field work was conducted at Fort Drum in New York, which, with it's mix of wetlands, mature forests, newly regenerating sites and a large river corridor, provides optimal habitat for both little brown bats and Indiana bats.  Before white-nose syndrome affected the bats locally in 2008, these bat species were abundant, Ford noted.

"These species have not been eliminated, but because of white-nose syndrome they occur in low numbers," said Ford. "Acoustic sampling allows us to sample for affected bat species and determine where on the landscape they are and what habitats they continue to use. At Fort Drum, these data are critical for the Army's land managers and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's regulators in working together to conserve endangered and declining bat species while providing range conditions necessary for the military mission."

Managers are seeking the most effective and least intrusive monitoring and survey techniques available for these populations to fulfill stewardship and regulatory requirements, and study authors explored the use of acoustic sampling as an alternative method to determine the presence of bats.

"The studies of bat ecology and management at Fort Drum have been a collaborative effort between USGS, the Department of Defense, U.S. Forest Service, Virginia Tech and West Virginia University since 2003," said Ford. "This long term data collection effort made the study particularly useful for managers, including the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, which, because of white-nose syndromes devastating effects, announced a proposed rule to list the northern long-eared bat as an endangered species in 2013."

"Effect of passive acoustic sampling methodology on detecting bats after declines from white- nose syndrome" by L.S. Coleman, W.M. Ford, C.A. Dobony and E.R. Britzke, is published in the current issue of the Journal of Ecology and the Natural Environment.