This Monday, as part of Notre Dame Day, the Notre Dame Initiative for Global Development (NDIGD) will host the first ever Global Development Challenge.“[The] Global Development Challenge is comprised of six stations centrally located on campus, each relating to a global development challenge that NDIGD and the Notre Dame Community are currently working to address. Each station has a hands-on, interactive challenge for students, faculty, staff and members of the South Bend community to participate in,” event planner Meagan McDermott said.McDermott said events will include a scavenger hunt, a geography challenge and a 3-point shooting contest.“Notre Dame Day is about celebrating the best aspects of the University, and so we’re excited to showcase the global development work NDIGD and the Notre Dame community is doing in such a fun and interactive way,” she said.Participants can take on the challenges individually or in teams of up to four people, McDermott said. The six challenges are slated to take no more than an hour and can be completed any time between 10 a.m. and 6:30 p.m.“Some of the stations will make for great photo opportunities, and there’s no better way for students and their friends to spend some down time between classes. The challenges were planned in such a way that anyone can participate and have fun, whether you’re taking on the challenges by yourself or with a group of friends,” McDermott said.McDermott said winners will have the opportunity to either play basketball or have dinner with former Notre Dame basketball player, Ruth Riley.“Each task relates to a global development issue that Notre Dame is currently working to address in the developing world, such as clean water, education and one of my passions, fighting malaria,” Riley said in a video promoting the challenge.According to McDermott, the original idea for the events came from Riley and her commitment to helping those in the developing world.“[Riley] envisioned [the Global Development Challenge] as an opportunity to spread the word about the work that NDIGD is doing to the rest of campus. We were excited about the opportunity to involve students in our mission, and saw Notre Dame Day as a great day to hold the event as we try to spread the word about the work that our office is doing to different parts of campus,” McDermott said.A portion of the $10 registration fee will go to Connectivity, Electricity and Education for Entrepreneurship in Uganda, one of NDIGD’s many projects, McDermott said.“This is a great opportunity to learn more about the aid and support Notre Dame is providing to those most in need. The global development work being highlighted through the Global Development Challenge is central to Fr. Sorin’s goal of being ‘a global force for good,’” she said.Tags: Global Development Challenge, NDIGD, Notre Dame Day, Notre Dame Initiative for Global Development, Ruth Riley
Paz said two climate scenarios are possible for this fall and winter. If a La Niña forms in the next few months, the Southeast will likely have a warm, dry fall and winter. But if the Pacific Ocean remains in the neutral phase, the result would be rainfall and temperature patterns close to normal. “Each agricultural group I meet with has its own set of concerns,” he said. “And lately, they center around the drought.” Despite the onset of what the SECC calls the “convective rainy season,” rainfall totals for the year remain below average except for in isolated areas, such as parts of central Georgia. The southwest corner of Georgia, around Seminole and Decatur counties, has been dry, too. The drought caused an increase in late planting, and these crops will need ample rain well into September. Paz is one of a team of scientists involved in the Southeast Climate Consortium, which tracks and predicts how the climate will affect crops and farmers in Georgia, Florida and Alabama. “If a La Niña does form in the Pacific Ocean in the next few months, it’s known to increase the likelihood of a warm and dry fall and winter in the Southeast,” he said. “Drier-than-normal conditions this fall and winter will make things really hard for farmers who’ll be harvesting peanuts in September and October.” Colder-than-normal surface temperatures in the eastern tropical Pacific and the greater extent of deeper cool water are signs that it’s “as likely as not that a full La Niña will develop sometime this fall,” he said. Rainfall in western Georgia, northern Alabama and the Florida Panhandle still lags behind. These areas remain in a drought ranging from severe to exceptional, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor. “A La Niña is likely to happen this fall, and if it does, we’ll be in deep trouble,” Paz said. “Our rainfall level is already down 20 inches in some areas of the state.” “A winter season with near-normal rainfall would go a long way toward easing drought conditions in Alabama and Georgia,” Paz said. By Sharon OmahenUniversity of GeorgiaThe crowd of Georgia peanut shellers gasped at Joel Paz’s presentation. The slides weren’t gory, but the information was scary nonetheless. Peanut shellers don’t want to hear that the state’s rain deficit will likely continue into the fall. “The shellers are really concerned over the quantity and quality of the peanuts they’ll get this year,” said Paz, an agrometeorologist with the University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences. “Pasture conditions have improved slightly in northeast and central Georgia,” he said. “But a dry August and September could be stressful to forage crops and grazing herds.” On July 31, the U.S. Department of Agriculture declared 36 percent of Georgia’s corn crop and 40 percent of the state’s hay crop to be in “very poor to poor condition.” Summer afternoon thundershowers brought some beneficial rainfall to the Southeast. Tropical storm Barry was the first to bring relief to the drought-stricken Southeast on June 2, Paz said. Barry came ashore in the Big Bend of Florida and brought welcome, widespread rainfall to eastern and southern parts of Georgia and most of Florida. Farmers statewide would benefit from a neutral climate phase this fall and winter. The state’s extreme drought has already withered pastures to the point that farmers are desperately searching for alternatives for nonexistent or low-quality hay. See complete agricultural climate predictions at the SECC Web site (www.agclimate.org).