Tag Archives: demographics

Italy’s Lombardy is back in a viral crisis when Brescia is on the rise | Instant News

Brescia, with a population of around 1.2 million, has seen its daily cases go from the mid-100s in early February to 901 on Wednesdays and 973 Thursdays, due to clusters of infections traced to British variants. Doctors said the number of COVID-19 patients being treated at major public hospitals rose from an average of around 200 to 300 recently.

“We can’t talk about the third wave from our point of view, just because the second wave never really ends,” said Dr. Cristiano Perani, head of the emergency room at the General Hospital of Brescia. “The increase is gradual, but has increased acceleration in recent weeks. “

Lombardy, Italy’s most populous region, has imposed a new lockdown on Brescia and is changing its vaccine strategy to direct the jabs it has on nearby provinces and cities in neighboring Bergamo. The goal of this strategy is to inoculate as many people as possible as quickly as possible in the worst affected areas.

Guido Bertolaso, who is in charge of the vaccine campaign, said the region would pass the 30% reserve the national government recommended to remain available for the second dose, and that from Thursday it would start vaccinating residents aged 60-79, much earlier than. scheduled. Lombardy recently began vaccinating people over 80, after giving health care workers and residents of nursing homes a priority.

The goal of the strategy, Bertolaso ​​said, is to create “health care” in the area with blanket vaccinations. This approach is based on studies from the UK and Israel – and even on the Lombardy data itself – which showed reduced infection rates as more people were vaccinated with just one dose.

“This is war,” Bertolaso ​​said.

Brescia’s deputy mayor, Laura Castelletti, said residents were willing to accept the new lockdown measures – which include the closure of all schools and child care centers – as long as the vaccination schedule accelerates.

“We are ready to make sacrifices if the vaccination campaign runs 24/7,” he said.

Brescia and Bergamo were the two Italian provinces hardest hit during the first wave of the pandemic, which started this time last year and quickly turned Lombardy into the epicenter of the spread in Europe.

Lombardy as a whole still accounts for nearly a third of Italy’s 96,974 confirmed COVID-19 deaths, and a fifth of the 2.87 million confirmed infections. Italy has the sixth highest confirmed death toll in the world, and the second in Europe after Britain.

The Italian vaccine campaign, which has delivered 3.92 million doses, has been slowed by delays in deliveries from three EU supplying pharmaceutical companies: Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna and AstraZeneca.

It was not immediately clear whether the health ministry would direct any vaccine to Lombardy, given the previously established quota that had provided the most doses there.

Italy’s virus czar, Domenico Arcuri, did not respond to Fontana’s request in a statement on Thursday but boasted that the injections showed a “comforting increase” this week, averaging around 100,000 a day nationwide.

Nearly two months after Italy began its vaccination campaign on December 27, the tiny Republic of San Marino gave its first dose on Thursday. San Marino, a city-state of about 33,800 people surrounded by Italy, had to buy a dose of Russia’s Sputnik V after a delay in receiving the dose administered from Italy.

“This is the most effective weapon we have against this disease,” said Dr. Enrico Rossi, who was among the first to be inoculated. “It’s kind of a nightmare this year but we hope it will end.”


Follow all AP pandemic coverage at https://apnews.com/hub/coronavirus-pandemic, https://apnews.com/hub/coronavirus-vaccine and https://apnews.com/UnderstandingtheOutbreak


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Q&A with MycoWorks Co-founder Sophia Wang | Instant News

Fashion is the second most polluting industry after oil and is responsible for 10 percent of annual global carbon emissions. Carbon intensive production animal hideout and Plastic for leather and synthetic clothing further exacerbates the impact of this industry, while waste from every stage of the fashion pipeline contributes to rampant air, water and soil pollution. As experts have known for years, the rise of fast fashion has enlarged the world’s resources and demonstrated the fragility of our current methods of production and consumption. If we want a future in which high-quality textiles play a role, we must act to change our habits on a system-wide scale.

When her artistic collaborator, Phil Ross, shared with her about the mycelium sculptures she has been working on for decades, artist Sophia Wang was amazed at the many possibilities in its natural pigments and textures. The mycelium consists of the root structure of the fungus and, like the edible part of the fungus, has a textural quality unlike that found in the animal or plant kingdom. Sophia had never seen anything like it and described Phil’s mycelium as “both stiff and foamy; compact and endlessly expressive.”

Cultivating mushrooms for consumption is an ancient industry that has a strong production and distribution infrastructure around the world. Mycelium’s abundance and biodegradability and carbon sequestration make it a clear choice for future sustainable goods. Companies like Eco-Friendly Design and Rhizoform LLC has spent decades developing mycelium as a packaging alternative for fragile fish and consumer goods and has even won support from Ikea and packaging giant SealedAir, but in fashion nothing has been tried on this scale yet.

Project with Sophia and Phil, MycoWorks, based on their proprietary process for mycelium cultivation called “Fine Mycelium ™”. This process uses the capacity of the fungus to bind itself and carbon-based materials to produce a durable three-dimensional structure. The first product they developed with Fine Mycelium was Reishi ™, the sustainable choice for skin that looks, feels and functions like an animal-derived version. Following their successful brand launch for Reishi in February 2020 at New York Fashion Week, MycoWorks plans to announce collaborations with some of the biggest names in the fashion world.

We sat down with Sophia Wang to discuss what makes MycoWorks a game changer for sustainable mode and what lies ahead.

China Environment Forum: What is unique about fashion as a means of presenting the delicate mycelium material?

Sophia Wang: Fashion is uniquely positioned to take the lead in new material adoption due to its global presence, impact and presence. There is a power made possible by creating high-value objects that are beautiful, aesthetically appealing, and long-lasting. A high-quality handbag or a beautiful piece of clothing becomes something intimate, that you live with, and that matters to you. When we started the company, it was an option to make things like structural panels, foam blocks, or protective packaging. But as far as introducing this new material and its extraordinary performative and expressive aesthetic qualities to the world, packaging applications do not represent all that. In our opinion, fashion is a very strong partner for introducing material in a way that adds value while communicating its own value.

CEF: What makes Reishi unique?

SW: Reishi is a highly engineered and customizable material, so we can develop specifications, be it size or features, and eliminate a lot of waste in the production process. Typically, working with animal hides is limited to what the farm can produce and the parameters of the animals you harvest. [With Reishi], we can develop the product straight to the design to eliminate waste from cutting and trimming. We may also work with customers to meet certain performance specifications, customize their appearance and develop those specifications.

CEF: How is Reishi advancing closed loop modeling in the fashion industry?

SW: We have new models for advanced material production. Mycelium grows on vegetable biomass and wood-based substrates so there is potential to centralize the production process by placing fine mycelium production alongside wood or biomass production. This highly portable technology is our strongest intervention in current supply chain models.

You can even collaborate with the fabrication of the final product. The by-product of Reishi production is actually the production of more mycelium-based products. The Reishi material is planted on a composite substrate, which self-implants in other mycelium components, which you can then use in structural panels, beams and foam packaging. There is a lot of potential closed loop in our manufacturing process, which is of great interest to us.

CEF: How does MycoWorks foster collaborative relationships with the leather industry?

SW: Instead of claiming that we are trying to replace skins, or provide an alternative to skins, we create options. Reishi, being a natural and non-plastic material, can be considered another delicate and rare skin along with other exotic skins such as crocodile, alligator, and ostrich. The leather industry, through our partners, is excited to work with us as we bring advanced material technology and a data-driven approach to the industry based on hundreds of years of craft expertise and know-how. . We have learned a lot from our partners in the leather industry and they have learned a lot from the processing methods and approaches we carry. They never had the opportunity to work with natural ingredients they could develop to specifications, which have a similar three-dimensional structure to collagen.

You might think of what we do as a crossroads between agricultural technology and the leather industry. The initial stages of our process are very similar to agricultural mushroom production in that we start with a similar substrate and inoculum. We then took some of the wisdom and models that come from tanning and finishing leather, and developed new chemicals and processes specifically for entirely new materials that are natural but not collagen or animal plastics.

CEF: What is the future for MycoWorks?

SW: In the next few years, our focus will be entirely on scaling our production processes to bring Reishi to our short list of selected brand launch partners who are exclusively engaged in fashion and luxury footwear. We opened a pilot facility and finally a full scale facility to support this launch and deliver the high volume that our brand partners have committed to. We think launching with these brand partners is the first step towards making Reishi and this technology ubiquitous as our partners are known for setting the highest standards for performance, quality and design.

In the long term, we hope to enable manufacturing co-locations to make supply chains more efficient and have an impact not only on the carbon footprint, but also on the overall production cost structure of these items.

Reishi is very measurable. I want this technology to be available in every corner of the world where there is agricultural production. There is potential worldwide for small producers to make secondary products with existing mushroom production and distribution infrastructure. Mycelium grows everywhere all over the planet and the input is very low – we just control the environment.

CEF: Is there someone who has inspired your work as a Closed Loop Innovator?

SW: As I began to understand and understand the stories I had to tell, I have to say that I was very inspired by Céline Semaan, the founder of Slow Factory Foundation and a defender of social and environmental justice. She educates about the fashion industry through an integrated approach that links it to economic justice and understands the impact of global colonialism, as well as issues around the workforce, environment and consumer production infrastructure. The messaging and communication interventions he takes to the world and the work he does with Slow Factory are integrated stories to tell.

I think the only way we can really change the system for all is with a very integrated approach. We are positioned [at MycoWorks] to make a tremendous impact in terms of the materials and fashion industry and I’m very excited to develop a platform through MycoWorks that can influence policy and direct decisions that affect the lives of individuals.

This blog part from the Closed Loop Innovators Series, featuring stories of women around the world innovating in business, civil society and science to reduce plastic waste pollution. A condensed version will appear in the forthcoming publication of the China Environmental Forum, InsightOut: Closing the Loop on Plastic Waste in China and the US

Clare Auld-Brokish is a research assistant at the Wilson Center’s China Environmental Forum where she works on urban water issues in China and global plastic waste. He recently returned from a Fulbright fellowship in Yunnan, China where he conducted environmental science research in freshwater lakes and developed wetlands.

Tongxin Zhu is a research assistant at the Wilson Center China Environment Forum. The focus is currently on marine plastic waste in China with an emphasis on consumer-facing industries. He recently graduated from Georgetown University, McCourt School of Public Policy with an MPP.

Source: Center for International Environmental Law, Edible Fungi and Medicines: Technology and Applications, Procedia Energi, United Nations News

Lead image credit: Sophia Wang, photo by Carla Tramullas, courtesy of MycoWorks.


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What to Know: Virus experts hope the Super Bowl will not fire the US | National news | Instant News

– Making deals or sticking to the gun? President Joe Biden spent decades shaking hands on bipartisan reforms, first as senator and then as vice president. But now Democrats appear to be supporting swift action in Congress on a $ 1.9 trillion coronavirus aid bill, even if Republicans fall behind. The government has pushed Democratic senators to prepare a plan that combines money to tackle the virus and vaccines with money to meet a progressive agenda that includes a higher federal minimum wage.

FIGURES: According to data through February 5 from Johns Hopkins University, the seven-day rolling average for daily new cases in the US fell over the past two weeks, from 180,489 on January 22 to around 125,854 on February 5. over the same period, the seven-day rolling average for new deaths each day rose from 3,088 to about 3,250.

QUOTE: “I’m still excited,” Michele Voelkert told the Sacramento Bee. The Californian woman who was laid off because of the pandemic was referring to preliminary talks from Biden. The White House releases a video of the phone call. The president called Voelkert after receiving a letter from him. She lost her job in July at a new clothing company. Biden remembered his father saying work was about dignity and respect as much as it was about pay.


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Latest: China reports several new cases of COVID-19 | National news | Instant News

Recipients include 30 million doctors, nurses and other frontline workers followed by another 270 million over the age of 50 or with illnesses.

India has registered 10.5 million cases, the second highest in the world after the US at 23.5 million. 152,000 deaths ranks third behind the US (392,000) and Brazil (208,000).

PHOENIX – Arizona reported more than 200 deaths from the coronavirus on Saturday as the state maintained the country’s worst infection rate.

Arizona’s coronavirus case rate was 1 in every 116 residents from January 8 to Friday.

The Department of Health Services reported 8,715 cases and 208 deaths, raising the pandemic’s total to 666,901 confirmed cases and 11,248 confirmed deaths.

There were 4,849 COVID-19 patients admitted to hospital occupying inpatient beds on Friday, down from Monday’s record 5,082.

BERLIN – Germany has administered more than one million vaccinations as new infections and deaths remain high and officials are weighing whether to increase lockdown measures.

Figures released by the national center for disease control, the Robert Koch Institute, on Saturday showed nearly 1.05 million vaccinations had been recorded – 79,759 more than the day before – in a country of 83 million people.


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Q&A with Evrnu co-founder, Stacy Flynn | Instant News

Stacy Flynn is very familiar with the ins and outs of the fashion supply chain. She knows how clothes travel the world as they go through the stages of design, textile production, and clothing shaping before landing at your local retail store. Over the years, he’s managed this supply chain for Dupont and Target, making regular visits to suppliers in China showing his original manufacturing facilities where he inspects samples of textiles and clothing and discusses prices and shipping. Nothing could have prepared him when he returned in 2010 with a Seattle-based startup to visit the smaller textile and dyeing factories, and see the staggering pollution generated by these second and third tier suppliers. His guide told him that during periods of increased textile production, wastewater emissions turned rivers into unnatural colors and factory exhausts blocked the air outdoors and even indoors for workers.

Stacy immediately began a mental tally of the millions of yards of fabric he’s worked on throughout his career and the associated environmental costs. The pride he held for his profession quickly deteriorated. At a crossroads, she asked herself, “Is this the end of the story, is this our state or is there some other way for the fashion industry?”

Today’s global fast fashion models encourage the fast design of inexpensive seasonal clothing. This fast moving supply chain produce over 92 million tonnes of waste annually and consumes 79 trillion liters of water. Cheap synthetic fiber which makes light and durable fabrics the fuel for this industry, but its high environmental cost and durability. In 2015, the annual greenhouse gas emissions from polyester production for textiles reached equal impact of 185 coal-fired power plants. The polyester fabric is very dangerous because when wearing or washing they can release plastic microfibers at an alarming rate. Scientists are currently unraveling how these microfibers accumulate in our bodies seabed, National Parks, seafood, and House.

Evrnu is a collaboration between Stacy Flynn and Christopher Stanev to counter the impact of the fashion industry on natural resources by licensing their supply-side innovations to global producers. Evrnu is innovative NuCycl Technology strips old clothing down to the fibers of its components for a stronger, more reusable finish. They modernize the textile industry by designing waste from the supply chain and leveraging discarded textiles as a resource for the future.

Evrnu made leaps and bounds in innovation and advocacy through his collaboration with Adidas and Stella McCartney and Levi Straus & Co, and appearances in the national industry alliance to promote United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. We sat down with Stacy to discuss Evrnu’s business model and why her company is uniquely pushing our understanding of fashion into the future.


China Environment Forum: What is meant by redefining the textile industry supply chain?

Stacy Flynn: As the world and where our industry is located, we keep repeating the same formula in hopes of a different outcome. Focusing on the future does require us to think creatively and more holistically about what the solution is by starting small and scaling it over time.

We have seen the negative environmental impact and limits of our growth with the way we do business today. What if we start designing our product with the intention of recycling it in the future? What if future textile byproducts were used to create the supply chain instead of mining raw materials?

CEF: What makes Evrnu recycling technology unique?

SF: You can take the trash and turn it into something else, but if that something else has the fate of ending up in a landfill or incinerator, you’re just creating an inevitable delay on the trash. Our NuCycl technology is unique in that it redesigns products so that they can be more fully recycled and reused in the future. Our research focuses on garment-to-garment recycling and garment-to-downstream technology which includes patents for converting textile waste into different types of paper for cardboard, packaging, and the like. Our technology will provide end-of-life solutions for textile waste that are harmless to our environment.

Today the business is based on producing large quantities at low prices. As a result, they do not keep up with the pace of innovation because there is no money to invest in them. Our technology is designed to redistribute incentives so that there is clear value for the entire supply chain. We are redefining our value proposition by creating products that align with consumer values ​​in reducing impact and training consumers to recycle their products so we can turn them back into new materials and give them access in a variety of forms.

CEF: The garment-to-garment recycling process is integral to Evrnu’s success. How is the closed loop process started?

SF: In the United States, we dispose of 17 million tonnes of clothing waste each year. Only 20 percent of this clothing waste goes to charities such as the Goodwill and Salvation Army, so far most of the textile waste goes to garbage and eventually goes to landfills. Of the percentage donated, charities try to resell or reuse as much as possible. Anything that can’t be sold is sent to clothing recyclers who manually sort and process it for the secondary market which is usually an emerging market. Things that can’t be resold or reused have to go straight to landfill and that’s where our technology is designed to intersect.

We want to reduce the amount of textiles that are going to landfill as much as possible by mining or dismantling the polymer and re-polymerizing it into new materials for new, high-value products. This waste supply chain is in place today and as we start donating more and more old textiles to the supply chain for sorting and splitting, it will continue to expand worldwide.

CEF: What is the future for NuCycl?

SF: That’s the million dollar question. When you have your own factory, you can control your own destiny, but the downside of owning your own factory is that it is very expensive. We chose to use a licensing model because we didn’t have to build a facility, but we often depend on the supply chain. So we’ve had to work really hard over the last two years to build strong relationships with waste owners, paper pulp mills and fiber producers in order to properly cut the existing waste supply chain. The process is very long, like a symphony that requires an end-to-end supply chain partnership to be successful.

Our early technology converts cotton waste into pulp which can pass through the same solvent systems currently used to dissolve wood pulp. The current system has been designed specifically for trees, so that it is compatible with fiber production systems [with our Regenerative Cellulosics technology] has taken time and we are now completing the final stages of development to get the quality fiber producers demand so they can make commercial fiber from our pulp. Next year we will maintain our pulp business by integrating pulp mill owners with fiber producers. We aim to bring between three and six brands to market next year.

CEF: Are regulations emerging to facilitate the redesign of the textile industry?

SF: We are starting to see the EU making strong policies about the environmental impact of the textile industry. For example, Ireland and France have clothes that are prohibited from dumping in landfills. Environmental damage from the textile industry is a colossal problem affecting mankind but no one has put money into it as many professional investors consider it a women’s problem. We have to change the fashion business in ways that make sense, and for this to work we have to find people who believe it’s possible.

The blog is the first in a new Closed Loop Innovator Series, featuring stories about women around the world innovating in business, civil society and science to reduce plastic waste pollution. A condensed version will appear in the forthcoming publication of the China Environmental Forum, InsightOut: Closing the Loop on Plastic Waste in China and the US

Clare Auld-Brokish is a research assistant at the Wilson Center’s China Environmental Forum where she works on urban water issues in China and global plastic waste. He recently returned from a Fulbright fellowship in Yunnan, China where he conducted environmental science research in freshwater lakes and developed wetlands.

Tongxin Zhu is a research assistant at the Wilson Center China Environment Forum. The focus is currently on marine plastic waste in China with an emphasis on consumer-facing industries. He recently graduated from Georgetown University, McCourt School of Public Policy with an MPP.

Source: Eunomia, Greenpeace, National Park Conservation Association, Earth Nature & Environment Review, Plastic Soup Foundation, The Guardian, United Nations Development Program, World Resources Institute

Main Photo Credit: The global fast fashion industry is in production more than 92 million tonnes of waste each year, belong to Shutterstock.com.


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