One Third of Freshwater Fish Face Extinction, New Report Warns

One Third of Freshwater Fish Face Extinction, New Report Warns (Source

A new report from a coalition of sixteen

conservation groups warns that almost a third of freshwater fish species face extinction because of human activity. “Nowhere is the world’s nature crisis more acute than in our rivers, lakes and wetlands, and the clearest indicator of the damage we are doing is the rapid decline in freshwater fish populations. They are the aquatic version of the canary in the coal mine, and we must heed the warning,” Stuart Orr, WWF global freshwater lead, said in a statement Tuesday announcing the report.

WWF is one of the many organizations behind the report, along with the Alliance for Freshwater Life, Conservation International and The Nature Conservancy, to name a few. Together, the groups emphasized the incredible diversity of the world’s freshwater fish and their importance for human wellbeing.

There are a total of 18,075 freshwater fish species in the world, accounting for 51 percent of all fish species and 25 percent of all vertebrates. They are an important food source for 200 million people and provide work for 60 million.

It’s called ‘nerd immunity’: Wearing glasses may protect against COVID-19

It’s called ‘nerd immunity’: Wearing glasses may protect against COVID-19, study finds


Those who wear glasses with a mask know how frustrating it can be to keep them from fogging up. You may even be tempted to remove them at times, just so you can see where you’re going.

But when it comes to protection against COVID-19, a new study has found that wearing glasses may be worth the frustration. According to a report by WKYC 3, multiple studies have shown that of the people who contract COVID-19, those who wear glasses at least eight hours a day make up a lesser percentage of that group than those who don’t wear glasses.

U.S. carries out airstrikes against Iranian-backed militia facilities in Syria

U.S. carries out airstrikes against Iranian-backed militia facilities in Syria (Source Reuters)

U.S. President Joe Biden on Thursday directed U.S. military airstrikes in eastern Syria against facilities belonging to what the Pentagon said were Iran-backed militia, in a calibrated response to rocket attacks against U.S. targets in Iraq. The strikes, which were first reported by Reuters, appeared to be limited in scope, potentially lowering the risk of escalation. Biden’s decision to strike only in Syria and not in Iraq, at least for now, also gives the Iraqi government some breathing room as it carries out its own investigation of a Feb. 15 attack that wounded Americans. “At President (Joe) Biden’s direction, U.S. military forces earlier this evening conducted airstrikes against infrastructure utilized by Iranian-backed militant groups in eastern Syria,” Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said in a statement.

Mr. Potato Head drops the mister, sort of

Mr. Potato Head drops the mister, sort of

(Source Associated Press)

Is it Mr. Potato Head or not?

Hasbro created confusion Thursday when it announced that it would drop the “Mr.” from the brand’s name in order to be more inclusive and so all could feel “welcome in the Potato Head world.” It also said it would sell a new playset this fall without the Mr. and Mrs. designations that will let kids create their own type of potato families, including two moms or two dads. But in a tweet later that afternoon, Hasbro clarified that the Mr. and Mrs. Potato Head characters will still live on and be sold in stores, but under the Potato Head brand. In a picture posted on Twitter, the “Mr.” and “Mrs.” names are less prominently displayed at the bottom of the box, instead of the top.

“While it was announced today that the POTATO HEAD brand name & logo are dropping the ‘MR.’ I yam proud to confirm that MR. & MRS. POTATO HEAD aren’t going anywhere and will remain MR. & MRS. POTATO HEAD,” the company tweeted.

The tweet came after news of the brand name change exploded on Twitter, with people asking if Barbie will change her name next. “I think Hasbro needs to drop the “Bro” and just be “Has,’” another person tweeted. Hasbro appears to want to have it both ways: expand the brand, while not killing off its most iconic characters, which appeared in the “Toy Story” films.

Zion hill, Jerusalem

Zion hill, Jerusalem(Source

Zion, in the Old Testament, the easternmost of the two hills of ancient Jerusalem. It was the site of the Jebusite city captured by David, king of Israel and Judah, in the 10th century BC (2 Samuel 5:6–9) and established by him as his royal capital. Some scholars believe that the name also belonged to the “stronghold of Zion” taken by David (2 Samuel 5:7), which may have been the fortress of the city. The Jewish historian Josephus, in the 1st century AD, identified Zion with the western hill of Jerusalem, where most of the city lay in his day.

This incorrect identification of the site was retained until the late 19th or early 20th century, when the site of Zion was identified as the eastern hill (modern Ophel). The site was not included in the walls of Jerusalem’s 16th-century fortifications.

Old Slave Mart Museum brings to life dark history of Charleston

Old Slave Mart Museum brings to life dark history of Charleston (Source

Walk into the Old Slave Mart Museum in downtown and you will be standing in a place that holds a dark history of Charleston and America. “You’re going to step foot on sacred ground. The museum itself is situated in an historic alleyway that back in the 1850′s and 60′s was used as an auction location to sell people of African descent,” museum research coordinator Rachel Campbell said. The Old Slave Mart was originally part of a slave market known as Ryan’s Slave Mart, which covered a large enclosed lot between Chalmers and Queen streets, according to the museum’s website.

The building sits along Chalmers Street, not far from the Four Corners of Law.

According to the museum’s website, “throughout the first half of the 19th century, slaves brought into Charleston were sold at public auctions held on the north side of the Exchange and Provost building.”

After the city prohibited public slave auctions in 1856, enclosed slave markets sprang up along Chalmers, State, and Queen streets. One such market was Ryan’s Mart, established by City Councilman and broker Thomas Ryan and his business partner James Marsh.”

More than 100 years after the end of slavery, the atmosphere of the building still evokes a somber mood. But many visitors leave with a feeling of hope because of all that descendants of Africans have achieved in America.

Are the Earth’s magnetic poles about to swap places?

Are the Earth’s magnetic poles about to swap places? (

Deep inside the Earth, liquid iron is flowing and generating the Earth’s magnetic field, which protects our atmosphere and satellites against harmful radiation from the sun. This field changes over time, and also behaves differently in different parts of the world. The field can even change polarity completely, with the magnetic north and south poles switching places. Between South America and southern Africa, there is an enigmatic magnetic region called the South Atlantic Anomaly, where the field is a lot weaker than we would expect. Weak and unstable fields are thought to precede magnetic reversals, so some have argued this feature may be evidence that we are facing one.

Now our new study, published June 12, 2020, in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, has uncovered how long the field in the South Atlantic has been acting up – and sheds light on whether it is something to worry about.

Weak magnetic fields make us more prone to magnetic storms that have the potential to knock out electronic infrastructure, including power grids. The magnetic field of the South Atlantic Anomaly is already so weak that it can adversely affect satellites and their technology when they fly past it. The strange region is thought to be related to a patch of magnetic field that is pointing a different direction to the rest at the top of the planet’s liquid outer core at a depth of 1,795 miles (2,889 km) within the Earth.

Putin warns of unnamed foreign efforts to destabilize Russia

Putin warns of unnamed foreign efforts to destabilize Russia (Source associated Press)

Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered his nation’s top counterintelligence agency Wednesday to redouble its efforts to address what he described as Western attempts to destabilize Russia.

Speaking at a meeting of top officials of the Federal Security Service, or FSB, the main KGB successor agency, Putin pointed at the “so-called policy of containment of Russia,” charging that it includes efforts to “derail our development, slow it down, create problems alongside our borders, provoke internal instability and undermine the values that unite the Russian society.” The Russian president added that those activities by foreign powers, which he didn’t name, are aimed at “weakening Russia and putting it under outside control.” The United States and its NATO allies have rejected similar previous claims by the Kremlin that they were seeking to undermine Russia. Russia’s relations with the West plummeted to post-Cold War lows following Moscow’s 2014 annexation of Ukraine’s Crimea and Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

The recent arrest of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny and a sweeping crackdown on protesters demanding his release has been another source of tension.

China overtakes U.S. as Europe’s main trading partner for the first time

China overtakes U.S. as Europe’s main trading partner for the first time


China dethroned the U.S. last year to become Europe’s top trading partner for the first time, data from the European statistics office has shown.

European Union exports to China grew by 2.2% last year and imports rose by 5.6%. In comparison, exports to the U.S. dropped by 8.2% and imports fell by 13.2%. The latest figures, released Monday by Eurostat, showed that China now has an even bigger role in how European economies perform.

“The reason behind it is clearly the fact that China/Asia is the only region going through a nice V-shaped recovery,” ING Germany economist Carsten Brzeski told CNBC on Tuesday.

The Chinese economy is performing slightly closer to pre-Covid levels in comparison with other parts of the world, where restrictions are still taking a toll on activity. China is expected to register the second-highest growth rate globally in 2021, according to forecasts from the International Monetary Fund.

Vaccination clinic hosted by the City of Charleston, Harris Teeter and Gaillard Center

Vaccination clinic hosted by the City of Charleston, Harris Teeter and Gaillard Center


There will be a vaccination clinic in Charleston hosted by the City of Charleston, Harris Teeter and the Gaillard Center. The clinic will be held at the Gaillard Center in Downtown Charleston and is for those in phase 1A. Participants must make an appointment to be part of the clinic through Harris Teeter’s website. Harris Teeter pharmacists will be administering the shots for the clinic.

The clinic was originally planned as a three day clinic, but now will only consist of one day due to the winter weather causing vaccine shipping delays.