Agents walked away from the conference with new ideas about what is possible for UGA Extension, said Wade Hutcheson, county Extension coordinator for Spalding County. Hutcheson presented a poster on a community garden and community revitalization project he helped start in Griffin, Georgia. “The opportunity to share the programming that you’re proud of and get feedback from an outside perspective is really valuable,” Hutcheson said. “It can help you see an approach or strategy that you didn’t before. Feedback from colleagues serves as useful evaluation.” For a full a listing of the workshops and posters presented at this year’s conference, visit urbanextension2015.com. For more information about UGA Extension, visit extension.uga.edu. More than 300 Cooperative Extension agents, some from as far away as Norway and American Samoa, converged in Atlanta May 4-7 to share ways that Extension is making an impact in the cities where they live. Hosted this year by University of Georgia Extension, the biennial National Urban Extension Conference allows Extension agents from across the country to share the work they are doing in their communities and what can be done better. “(Being here) is the opportunity to talk with people who have the same idea, globally, about the future of Extension.” said Keith Nathaniel, county Extension director for Los Angeles County for the University of California Cooperative Extension. “America is continuing to urbanize, and as Extension agents, we need to be there to help.” The U.S. Congress set up Cooperative Extension Service in 1914 to provide on-demand research-based education to farmers and homesteaders, and that work is still a major part of the service’s essential mission. However, today’s Cooperative Extension System also provides valuable programs for city dwellers — from science enrichment programs for school children to water conservation strategies for the green industry and classes for beginners and advanced gardeners. Over the course of the three-day conference, agents hosted workshops on everything from capacity building and engaging new audiences to working with county and city governments to tackle environmental issues. “We’ve got three big categories this year, said Sheldon Hammond, district Extension director for UGA Extension’s northwest district, which serves the metro-Atlanta area. “One is making communities healthy through food and nutrition programs, through working with youth and community gardens. We also have a lot of environmental programs being highlighted, having to do with water quality and big urban issues. And of course, the third one would be working with volunteers to expand our efforts in urban communities.” UGA Extension and faculty from the UGA College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences and College of Family and Consumer Sciences presented on several topics, including:Outreach methods for growing diverse audiences. Program evaluation for those new to measuring the impact of their programs. Zoonosis prevention curricula for children developed with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Georgia 4-H’s work combating childhood obesity and hunger. Working with school officials to create a wide-ranging leadership conference for students. Securing federal grant money to pay AmeriCorps workers. Teaching limited resource families to prepare healthy meals on a budget through the Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program. Collaborating with the Georgia Environmental Protection Division through water-centered science curriculum for students, Project WET.Extension agents for across the nation presented on similar topics, providing real world examples of programs that are proven to work, Hammond said. “We have people here from 47 different states so we’re able to highlight the University of Georgia Extension programming to those folks. However, they’re also bringing in programming and expertise that our folks can learn from. So it’s a two way street that we have going on here and it’s been well worth it to host it,” he said.
In its most successful year of fundraising to date, the University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences raised nearly $24 million in gifts, the second-highest total among all UGA colleges and schools for the fiscal year 2018, which ended June 30.In fact, the fiscal 2018 total surpassed last year’s fundraising total by more than $15 million.“We thank our supporters who recognize the value of our teaching, research and extension programs and have chosen to make investments in our long-term success,” said Mary Ann Parsons, senior director of development for the college. “As we look toward the future, this support provides a vital foundation for our ability to continue to educate tomorrow’s workforce, provide high-quality research programs, and equip our county faculty with the resources to tackle challenges in communities across the state.”To date, CAES donors have contributed more than $75 million to the Commit to Georgia campaign, a multiyear effort to increase scholarships, improve classroom opportunities, and support research and service across the university. The growth of campaign donations by UGA donors has set a record for five years straight.The total endowed funds to CAES reached nearly $40 million and included an endowed chair and three endowed professorships.Fiscal 2018 giving by alumni and friends of CAES resulted in a 10.5 percent increase in the annual fund, and 777 individuals made their first gift to CAES.These gifts will have a huge impact on CAES students. Already, $150,000 has been designated to CAES for Georgia Commitment Scholarships, need-based undergraduate student scholarships that are matched dollar-for-dollar by the UGA Foundation. These funds help to cover students’ costs that may not be covered by other scholarships or grants, thereby removing students’ financial barriers. CAES is better equipped to train the next generation of scientists and to contribute to Georgia’s largest economic sector thanks to the generosity of alumni, corporations, foundations and friends.To learn more about giving to CAES, visit www.caes.uga.edu/alumni/giving or contact the CAES Office of Development and Alumni Relations by calling 706-542-3390.
Coal’s end may be on the horizon FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Bloomberg:Should we just give up now?The world’s electrical utilities need to reduce coal consumption by at least 60 percent over the two decades through 2030 to avoid the worst effects of climate change that could occur with more than 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 degrees Fahrenheit) of warming, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change announced Monday.Such a target seems wildly ambitious: Even Bloomberg New Energy Finance, which tends to be more optimistic than other analysts (and more accurate) about the speed of energy transition, expects coal-fired generation to increase by 10 percent over the period. Hold on though. Is it really such a stretch?After all, U.S. coal-power generation decreased by about a third in the seven years through 2017, to 12.7 billion British thermal units from 18.5 billion, based on data from energy-market consultancy Genscape Inc. In the European Union, black-coal generation fell by about the same proportion over just four years through 2016, according to Eurostat, to 385,925 gigawatt-hours from 544,279 GWh.Across Europe and the U.S., the decline in coal output recently has averaged close to 5 percent a year. If the world as a whole can reach 7 percent a year, it would be on track to meet the IPCC’s 2030 target. The conventional wisdom is that this isn’t possible, as rising demand from emerging economies, led by China and India, overwhelms the switch from fossil fuels in richer countries. That may underestimate the changing economics of energy generation, though.The mainstream view is still that we can’t decarbonize our electricity system fast enough to meet the IPCC’s targets. But a decade ago, the current situation of plateauing demand for coal and car fuel and cratering renewables costs looked equally outlandish. Given the way the world’s energy market has changed in recent years, it’s a good idea to never say never.More: The end of coal could be closer than it looks