A lack of rain this winter on the course near the Pacific Ocean has caused a lack of rough and it was evident in the scores. The scoring average of the 78 players in the event was 69.76, nearly two strokes lower than the Champions Tour average. Peter Jacobsen, Allen Doyle and Morris Hatalsky were a stroke behind, and Loren Roberts, Bobby Wadkins and Bruce Lietzke topped an 11-player group at 67. The Newport Beach Country Club is about as accomodating as the Champions Tour players could have hoped for Friday. Jay Haas, Fuzzy Zoeller, Ben Crenshaw, Tom Purtzer, Euardo Romero and R.W. Eaks shot 6-under 65s to share the first-round lead in the Toshiba Classic. “I think not having any rain hurts the course a little bit,” Purtzer said. “It makes the course a little defenseless. “The golf course is playing fast also. The par 5s, most of the guys can get there in two on two of them. The fairways are hard and fast.” Purtzer, who won the event in 2004 aided by a course-record 60, said the rounds could go lower on the weekend. Haas, who along with Crenshaw had the only bogey-free rounds among the leaders, said: “I think you’ll see someone shoot a low score. There are a lot of guys close together now.” Crenshaw, who had not recorded a round in the 60s in his six previous rounds, found his game at the 6,584-yard layout, the second shortest on the tour’s schedule. “We enjoy playing this golf course,” Crenshaw said. “It’s not a killer course. You have to place your shots on the green. There are subtle tilts on this green that I find very interesting.” One up: Stephen Leaney hit a 40-foot birdie putt on the last hole to give him a one-shot lead over Heath Slocum at the PGA Tour’s PODS Championship in Palm Harbor, Fla. Leaney shot a 4-under 67 as only 37 players remained under par and 27 of them were within four shots of the lead. Playing in the rain: Stacy Prammanasudh shot a 5-under 67 to take a one-stroke lead during the suspended first round of the LPGA’s MasterCard Classic in Huixquilucan, Mexico, while two-time defending champion Annika Sorenstam had a 69 in her season debut. Play was suspended because of rain at about 3 p.m., then called for day because of darkness at about 6 p.m. Sixty-seven players were unable to complete the round. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!
Click HERE if you’re unable to view the gallery on your mobile device.Don’t close the door on the Raiders playing one final season in Oakland just yet.The Raiders will meet with the Coliseum Authority one last time to discuss possibly playing at the Coliseum in 2019 before leaving for Las Vegas, the Bay Area News Group has learned.“Yes, there still is a possibility that an agreement can be reached, (I’m) not sure what the odds are, but still possible,” said Scott McKibben, executive director …
CLICK HERE if you are having a problem viewing the photos on a mobile device INDIANAPOLIS — How the Raiders graded Sunday in a 31-24 win over the Indianapolis Colts at Lucas Oil Stadium:PASS OFFENSE: BDerek Carr started 11 of 13 and finished 21 of 31 for 189 yards, so the Raiders got a great start and then slowed for a time. Carr went through a 1-for-8 spell after the quick start but threw no interceptions and made some big-time throws. First among them was an 18-yard touchdown strike to …
Mosibudi Makgato and Rosemary Padi, founders of YaMama Gemmer, plan to distribute their traditional ginger beer internationally. They created the ginger beer of YaMama Gemmer from a family recipe.Mosibudi Makgato and Rosemary Padi, founders of YaMama Gemmer, want to distribute their traditional ginger beer internationally. “Our product must be something that is on tourists’ list to get whenever they come to South Africa.” (Image: Melissa Javan)Melissa JavanSocial media was the number one marketing tool to get a traditional South African product into the hands of more customers, said the founders of YaMama Gemmer. Rosemary Padi and her sister, Mosibudi Makgato, created the ginger beer of YaMama Gemmer from a family recipe.The two recently took part in the Japan Summit in Johannesburg, where they got a chance to give the ambassador of Japan and other delegates a taste of their signature product.Digital transformation is neededThe National Small Business Chamber survey found that 43% of small business owners struggled with the sales and marketing of their businesses.The chamber’s Mike Anderson said that more than more than 10,000 small business owners took part in the survey, which was released last year. He urged entrepreneurs to become rainmakers. “Give your business a digital transformation. Be brutal on money.”Makgato and Padi are not afraid to take their marketing to social media. Makgato said people tagged them in images on Instagram whenever they were drinking YaMama Gemmer. “Someone tagged us in an image showing they’re having the drink with cereal,” she said. “Instagram is a beautiful platform for us.”Neighbourhood markets were also a good way to get more sales. “We also exhibit at a lot of expos. We work closely with Proudly South African and that’s how we find out about the expos.”The @YaMamaGemmer stand looks so good, waiting for their slush puppy #MakhelwaneFest #VayaSoweto @visitgauteng #TravelMassiveJHB pic.twitter.com/2DAmkLIDbu— PULY (@PulyBeast) December 2, 2016The beginningIt all started with their mother, Mmapula Makgato, who was always asked to make ginger beer for functions. “When there’s a function, everyone asks certain people to do certain things.“We know who does it best so we stick to a certain person making that thing at a family gathering. I won’t ask my sister to make salad, because I know it’s not her strongpoint,” said Padi.The skill of making products such as ginger beer was dying. Many of the older women who used to make it, no longer have the physical strength needed to produce it, explained Padi. This opened a market for them to produce and sell their family recipe.Their researchBoth Padi and Makgato were working full time in the corporate world when they started YaMama Gemmer. They started with research first.According to Makgato, there were a lot of products on the market that were close to ginger beer. There was also several synthetic products that claimed to be ginger beer. “A lot of people had bad experiences with these products.”For example, people complained of getting heartburn.“We then had to educate people about our product. We told them that it was a natural product,” she said. “Since we started we have never had bad experiences. Clients who complained about the bad experiences with other products, came back to us with positive feedback.”Makgato said that they also talk to people about health concerns, especially diabetes. “We talk about the amount of sugar that is in our ginger beer versus in other drinks. Other drinks have more sugar in them, which may be harmful. Our drink does not have preservatives in it.”They did not only learn about market research; they also learned about the different sugars that went into the drink as well as food safety and complying to certain standards, said Makgato.They were continuously learning new things. “Things change – so we have to keep up with the local as well as international trends.” Last year, for example, they rebranded YaMama Gemmer so its label would be suitable for an international market.Taking the leapYaMama is sold as a concentrated drink and as ready-made bottles. (Image: Melissa Javan)In August 2014, Padi quit her corporate job in the information technology industry and went to work on YaMama full-time with an assistant.YaMama’s shop opened last year in Randburg, Johannesburg and the factory has been running since November 2015 at the Riversands Incubation Hub in Midrand. YaMama Gemmer now employs five people.YaMama Gemmer is distributed to Soweto, Vosloorus and Lesotho, among others, and the sisters are planning to expand the business outside the country.Watch Rosemary Padi and Mosibudi Makgato talk about how people responded to their leaving their corporate jobs to start their own ginger beer-making business:Working togetherThe sisters said that it was great to work together. “We are best friends,” said Padi, referring to her father’s belief that family relationships laid a foundation. “He said that we must make friends at home first.“We know each other’s strengths and we capitalise on these. So each of us can deal with pressures and situations differently.”Makgato added: “It helps us to go about business because we know each other’s strengths. For instance, if it’s a situation where someone has to be firm, I’ll come in. When it’s a merry situation, (my sister) comes in.”Padi agreed. “I’m the people pleaser. I’m much more patient than Makgato is.”Would you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See Using Brand South Africa material.
A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… frederic lardinois Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Related Posts Google just announced a new product in Google Labs: Google Image Swirl. Image Swirl introduces a Wonder Wheel-like user interface for Google Images. The new search interface combines the Wonder Wheel experience with Google’s ability to find similar images and discover faces in these images. Instead of just showing one image, the Image Swirl interface displays a stack of photos. Clicking on this stack opens up a Wonder Wheel with related images clustered around the original photo. Tags:#Google#news#web For now, Image Swirl only works for about 200,000 queries, though Google plans to include more in the near future. Better Photo Search Through Smarter AlgorithmsThis new feature takes image search to a new level, as it doesn’t just display the most relevant images. Instead, Google notes, these “are the most relevant groups of images.” To create these clusters of related images, Google analyzes the characteristics of the images themselves, but the algorithm also looks at meta tags and other clues in the description of these images. Google uses the same algorithms to find and organize images of landmarks in its index.In an interview with eWeek, Google Image Swirl Product Manager Aparna Chennapragada said that this new service is part of Google’s drive to “go beyond just relying on text.” Bing introduced its visual search feature a few weeks ago and is still ahead of Google in bringing these features to its core search product. Image Swirl makes looking for images on Google a far more interactive and fun experience. For now, Image Swirl is only a labs product – and some of the results can be a bit off at times – but chances are that this feature will find its way into the search options panel on Google Images in the future. 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market
Resilient Design: Water in a Drought-Prone EraIn the West, Drought Ends ‘Era of the Lawn’A New Strategy for Drought-Stressed CitiesFloating Solar: A Win-Win for Drought-Stricken Lakes The future is unknownLonger-term, a changing climate may well add to Cape Town’s water pressures.“The models agree that Cape Town will become hotter over the next century,” says Peter Johnston of the University of Cape Town’s Climate Systems Analysis Group. “Most of the models — but not all — predict that it will become drier, too.” Increasing the city’s water resilience will mean expanding supplies from sources like desalination plants that are not as influenced by the vagaries of rainfall as the current dams. But these are expensive and energy-intensive, and residents will pay more, perhaps significantly more, for water.The government will have to roll out new infrastructure amid considerable uncertainty about rainfall in the coming years, running the risk of over- or under-spending. Willem Landman of the University of Pretoria says that meteorologists “can make a reliable weather forecast that works for five days” and climate scientists “can model the average climate conditions a hundred years from now with a great degree of confidence. But decadal predictions? Forget about it. We don’t know how to set the models up. We can’t say what the rainfall is going to be 10 years from now.”The question of whether Cape Town has moved into a new, climate-changed, normal, with more frequent droughts, is not easy to answer. “We’re out of the envelope of certainty,” says Christine Colvin. “Cape Town is not special. Many other cities will face these challenges in coming years.” RELATED ARTICLES Circumstances are considered very rareThe southwestern part of South Africa has a Mediterranean climate much like the central coast of California, with hot, dry summers and cool, rainy winters (June through August.) The winter rains fill the six large dams around the city that form the core of the Western Cape Water Supply System (WCWSS), which services the vast majority of the city’s residential and industrial water users, as well as farming areas and smaller towns nearby.The winter rains are generally very reliable. Using historical rainfall data, Piotr Wolski of the Climate Systems Analysis Group at the University of Cape Town has determined that a multi-year drought as severe as the current one would only be expected once every few hundred years, perhaps less than once in a millennium.The Theewaterskloof dam, Cape Town’s main water supply with a capacity of nearly 17 billion cubic feet. In late February, its reservoir’s level fell to 11%. (Photo: 6000.co.za via Flickr)The ongoing drought in the catchments of the WCWSS dams, he writes, “is indeed very, very rare, and thus very, very severe.” The historical rainfall record indicates that, having had two poor rainfall years in a row (2015 and 2016), the chances of a third bad year — especially one as bad as 2017 — were extremely remote.In addition to historical data pointing to the extremely low likelihood of 2017’s winter being dry, the South African Weather Service modeled a three-month seasonal forecast for the winter of 2017 that predicted higher than average rainfall. Notwithstanding that seasonal rainfall forecasts for the Cape region are notoriously unreliable, it appears that officials were left feeling less urgency to impose hugely unpopular water restrictions or push forward with expensive water infrastructure projects early in the year.Experts have long warned that Cape Town would find itself in a water crisis caused by converging drought, population growth, and the failure to secure new water resources. But because of uncertainties in water consumption rates and in weather and climate prediction, it’s been hard to fix a date.“Water security has always been seen as ‘important’ in Cape Town, but until recently it has not been seen as ‘urgent,’” says Christine Colvin, head of freshwater programs with WWF-South Africa. “We have an HIV/AIDS epidemic, an education crisis, massive unemployment — these are understandably ‘urgent’ to politicians and have competed successfully for attention and funding. Add to this South Africa’s fractured government institutions, corruption, and the fact that the national government is responsible for bulk water infrastructure like dams, but municipalities are responsible for water distribution and demand management, and you have a recipe for inaction on major water projects.”In addition, Colvin says, the City of Cape Town raises significant revenue from water sales to residents, so it has never seriously incentivized individuals to conserve. How did Cape Town get in this jam?Cape Town’s predicament provides a global warning about the difficulty of ensuring water resilience in a warming world, even if, as with Cape Town, climate change is firmly on the agenda of city managers. Most climate models predict that the Cape Town region will become not only warmer, but drier, which bodes ill for a metropolitan area whose population has roughly doubled to 4 million in the past three decades and continues to grow at 1% to 2% annually.And Cape Town’s rushed efforts to boost water supply by tapping into aquifers, including some in national parks and provincial nature reserves, are damaging valuable ecosystems and putting rare species at risk of extinction. The agricultural sector, including the Cape region’s world-renowned wine industry, has been forced to sharply cut back on irrigation, which is reducing production and leaving tens of thousands of people out of work.So how did Cape Town, one of the best-managed and wealthiest cities in Africa, find itself on the brink of running dry? The city has, after all, won awards for its work on climate change. South Africa has some of the world’s most detailed, progressive water laws and deep expertise in water science and management, climate science, and meteorology. The city has mapped projected sea level rise and convened countless climate change adaptation planning sessions. Last year, Cape Town’s mayor said, “We cannot plan anything without factoring in the impact of climate change.”A simple (and perhaps simplistic) answer to the cause of the current crisis is that rainfall was well below average for three years in a row, that no one could have or did predict that, and thus serious action to reduce water consumption — which should have begun in 2016 — came too late. The crisis has exposed significant weaknesses in scientists’ ability to forecast weather on a seasonal scale, which is when it matters to city managers and farmers, and predict rainfall on an annual or decadal scale, which is when it matters to developers of large-scale infrastructure, such as raising dam heights and building desalination plants. Backed by the iconic Table Mountain, Cape Town, South Africa’s second-largest metropolis, seduces increasing numbers of international travelers. Its charismatic neighborhoods, bright beaches, and breathtaking natural landscapes garner shelves-full of tourism awards and terabytes of glowing Instagram posts.Recently, Cape Town also has become infamous as the home of “Day Zero,” the day when most of the city’s taps are predicted to run dry. With its major, rain-fed supply dams dangerously low after three years of drought, most of the city’s 4 million-plus residents — some rich, many desperately poor — have been facing the prospect of lining up at emergency water distribution points to collect a daily ration of just 6.6 gallons per person sometime before June or July. That’s when winter rains normally begin filling the reservoirs of this Southern Hemisphere city.Now, largely thanks to radical conservation efforts — in January, the average Cape Town resident’s daily water quota was just one-third the amount used by the typical Californian at the height of that state’s 2016 drought — the city has reduced water consumption by 57%. Day Zero has been pushed back to July 9. And if the citizens of Cape Town (myself among them) continue to save as we have been, we should make it to the winter rainy season without having to line up for water. Rare plants abound, pressure for new wells intenseCape Town is situated in the heart of the Cape Floristic Region, a distinct area of extraordinary biological diversity that contains 9,500 species of plants, about 70 percent of which are endemic. The Cape Floristic Region’s dominant vegetation type, popularly known as fynbos, contains many noteworthy species that are descended from ancient lineages. “These plants are like the Mona Lisas, the Rembrandts of the botanical world,” says William Bond, a botanist at the University of Cape Town.Many of these plants are also dependent on seeps — permanently wet areas where underground aquifers naturally spill out on to the surface. Some are so rare that they only occupy single, tiny sites. “Drilling a single borehole in the wrong place could cause the extinction of a species,” says Bond.Lampranthus schlechteri, a rare, native plant species found in the Wemmershoek Vlei wetland, which was recently damaged by efforts to drill for groundwater.It may already be too late for the Wemmershoek Erica (Erica bakeri), a diminutive heath-like plant with tiny pale-pink, bell-shaped flowers. About two weeks ago, the rushed construction of a water borehole and a pipeline trench commissioned by the municipality of Stellenbosch severely damaged a wetland in a conservation area. The wetland is the last known habitat for the Wemmershoek Erica, and one of the last known habitats for other critically endangered plants. “Goodbye… How many thoughtless flushes were you worth?” tweeted Cape Town ecologist Jasper Slingsby.Notwithstanding the environmental impacts, there is enormous political pressure to proceed with borehole drilling. Biologists with the provincial nature conservation agency, CapeNature, have been forbidden to speak to the media. Nonetheless, documentation of environmental harm is leaking out: a spill of drilling mud that fouled a long section of a pristine river; maps showing more than 200 planned borehole sites in ecologically sensitive areas; and consultants’ reports showing drilling foam and toxic pump-test water spilling into nature reserves.“We shouldn’t go blundering into these natural areas, but now it’s like the drillers have a blank check to do that,” says Bond.Slingsby worries that once the boreholes are drilled, it will be politically difficult to turn them off, even if they dry up fragile wetland ecosystems. “I don’t know of any place that has given up water sources like that,” he says. Aggressive action came last yearBut as the magnitude of the growing water shortage became clear last year, Cape Town officials responded with an aggressive conservation campaign. Last June, all use of municipal water outside the home was banned, meaning no car washing or garden irrigation. In September, residents were limited to 23 gallons per person per day for all uses (washing, drinking, and toilet-flushing included) and at the beginning of February this year, the daily personal quota was reduced to a mere 13 gallons. Water pressure has been reduced across the city, slowing the flow from residents’ taps. And the municipality has installed tens of thousands of water-restriction devices on high-use households and has sharply increased punitive water tariffs for heavy users.As a result of these and other measures, the city’s water consumption has fallen from 317 million gallons per day in early 2015 to about 137 million gallons per day. Day Zero has been pushed back from April 12 to July 9.Cape Town is now scrambling to augment its rain-fed dams with other sources, mindful that a further year of drought is not impossible. Government has identified various options, including desalinating seawater, reclaiming wastewater (i.e. purifying sewage, as is successfully done in some other cities), and tapping underground aquifers. But desalination plants are expensive to build and operate, wastewater treatment plants are time-consuming to construct, and so the city has prioritized the hasty drilling of dozens of boreholes. Many of the drilling sites are in protected areas that are government-owned, which simplifies access.Drilling boreholes and constructing pipelines, especially in conservation areas, would usually require environmental impact assessments and detailed environmental management plans. Because of the drought emergency, however, the provincial government has significantly relaxed these requirements, to the increasing concern of biologists and conservationists. This post originally appeared at Yale Environment 360. Impact in agrarian areas under-reportedAlmost all the Cape Town drought media coverage has focused on the city itself. Few reporters have paid attention to the rural areas around it, enormous acreages of which are covered in economically valuable vineyards, olive groves, and fruit orchards that require irrigation from the same six large dams and associated pipelines that sustain Cape Town. Farmers in the region have had their water allowance cut 60% to 87%, meaning that almost all irrigation was halted on February 1, even as many trees still carried fruit.The Western Cape provincial government has estimated that 50,000 agricultural jobs will be lost this year, mostly among seasonal fruit-pickers, leading to about 260,000 people requiring poverty-relief assistance. Most of South Africa’s wheat is grown near Cape Town, and many wheat farmers will not harvest a crop this season. Agri Western Cape, a farmers’ union, says that farmers around Cape Town have lost about $1.2 billion due to the drought. Twenty-two percent of the sheep in the region have been culled because of a lack of fodder.Francois Viljoen of Vinpro, an organization representing vine-growers and winemakers, estimates an overall harvest reduction of 15% to 25% this year. Even if good rains fall in winter, “we will see a carryover effect next growing season, with reduced yields, because the vines have not been able to build up reserves during the drought.” Because of smaller harvests, seasonal fruit-pickers will again have reduced income, with significant effects on poor rural communities.No one can say how long Cape Town’s water crisis will last. Even if good rains fall this winter, tight use restrictions will likely remain in place indefinitely; the dams have been drawn down so far that it may take years to refill them, and water augmentation projects may take years to scale up. So, disaster averted? Nothing to see here anymore? Far from it. The city’s efforts on the supply side of the water equation have been far less successful than its work on consumption. Even if the drought comes to an end in 2018 — and few experts are willing to predict that — the effects of this water crisis will be felt for years, possibly decades. Adam Welz is a South African writer, photographer and filmmaker based in Cape Town. He writes about international and African wildlife issues for Yale Environment 360.
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The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) on Saturday welcomed the statement made by rival National Conference leader Farooq Abdullah in Parliament that talks should be held with Pakistan over the Kashmir issue.“The PDP welcomes Dr. Farooq’s change of heart and the party hopes that it wouldn’t be a mere poll gimmick. It is also high time the Centre utilised this consensus among the political groups for a peaceful resolution of the Kashmir issue. Creating political vacuum will not help in any way,” said PDP leader Naeem Akhtar.Holistic approachDr. Abdullah on Friday asked the Centre to start a dialogue with Pakistan over the Kashmir issue. “The Centre must take a holistic approach to address the decades-old conflict amicably and peacefully. Talks with Pakistan, Hurriyat and other stakeholders is needed and through this way only, the situation will get stabilised. It is a moral responsibility of the Centre to address the issue,” said Mr. Akhtar.Meanwhile, PDP president Mehbooba Mufti, in an interview to a news channel, claimed that “her party legislators were lured by the Centre with money and ministerial berths, and after they rejected it, they were being threatened with NIA investigations”.