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USA Outdoor Track and Field Championships

The USA Track & Field Outdoor Championships is an annual track and field competition organized by USA Track & Field, which serves as the American national championships for the sport. Since 1992, in years which feature a Summer Olympics, World Athletics Championships or an IAAF Continental Cup, the championships serve as a way of selecting the best athletes for those competitions; the history of the competition starts in 1876, when the New York Athletic Club decided to organize a national championships. Having held the NYAC Spring and Fall Games, the seventh edition of the Fall Games became the country's first national track and field championships; the National Association of Amateur Athletes of America, began sponsoring the meeting in 1879, organised the championships up to 1887. At this point, the Amateur Athletic Union, a more powerful athletic organisation, began to hold their own version of the national championships. Two national championships were held in 1888; the AAU was the sole organizer of the event for the next ninety years.

In 1923, the AAU sponsored the first American Track & Field championships for women. As a result of the Amateur Sports Act of 1978, the AAU no longer had power over Olympic sports in the United States. A spin-off group, The Athletics Congress, held its first national track and field championships in 1980; the Athletics Congress was renamed USA Track & Field in 1993, they have organized the annual championships since. The following athletics events are featured on the national championships' program: Sprint: 100 m, 200 m, 400 m Middle distance track events: 800 m, 1500 m Long distance track events: 5000 m, 10,000 m Hurdles: 100 m hurdles, 110 m hurdles, 400 m hurdles, 3000 m steeplechase Jumps: long jump, triple jump, high jump, pole vault Throws: shot put, hammer, javelin Combined events: heptathlon, decathlon Walks: 20 km walk / 20000 m walk In earlier editions before 1974, running distances were measured in yards. All races were in yards until 1928. From on, races were measured in meters for Olympic years and yards for other years, except 1933 to 1951 inclusive and 1959.

Note that the track surface changed over these years. Synthetic tracks were used in the men's editions from 1974 on; the tracks in the other years were cinders, sometimes with a mix of brick. USA Track & Field Indoor Championships United States Olympic Trials USA Marathon Championships USA Half Marathon Championships USA Cross Country Championships ChampionsUnited States Championships. GBR Athletics. Retrieved on 2015-06-28. United States Championships. GBR Athletics. Retrieved on 2015-06-28. United States Championships. GBR Athletics. Retrieved on 2015-06-28. Official website from USATF A brief history of the US national championship from Track & Field News Past results from Track & Field News Past champions from USATF

2018 United Nations Climate Change Conference

The 2018 United Nations Climate Change Conference was the 24th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change known as the Katowice Climate Change Conference. It was held between 15 December 2018 in Katowice, Poland; the conference incorporated the fourteenth meeting of the parties for the Kyoto Protocol, the third session of the first meeting of the parties for the Paris Agreement which agreed on rules to implement the Agreement. After the United States left the Paris Agreement, China took a leading role by hosting many of the preparatory meetings in the weeks beforehand. In November 2018, the World Meteorological Organization released a report stating that 2017 atmospheric carbon dioxide levels reached 405 parts per million, a level not seen in three to five million years. In October 2018, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change published its Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5 °C. On 3 December 2018, the noted British naturalist Sir David Attenborough told delegates at the conference that: Right now we are facing a man-made disaster of global scale, our greatest threat in thousands of years: climate change.

If we don’t take action, the collapse of our civilisations and the extinction of much of the natural world is on the horizon. On 4 December 2018, 15 year-old climate change activist Greta Thunberg addressed the summit and explained the severity of the problem this way: What I hope we achieve at this conference is that we realise that we are facing an existential threat; this is the biggest crisis humanity has faced. First we have to realise this and as fast as possible do something to stop the emissions and try to save what we can save; the same day, the 14th Dalai Lama wrote to the participants of the conference: "Climate change is not a concern of just one or two nations. It is an issue that affects all humanity, every living being on this earth; this beautiful place is our only home. We have to take serious action now to protect our environment and find constructive solutions to global warming."Al Gore told delegates they faced “the single most important moral choice in history of humanity”.

António Guterres the Secretary-General of the United Nations told “We’re running out of time. To waste this opportunity would compromise our last best chance to stop runaway climate change, it would not only be immoral, it would be suicidal.” The IPCC special report is a stark acknowledgment of what the consequences of global warming beyond 1.5 degrees will mean for billions of people around the world those who call small island states home. This is not good news, but we cannot afford to ignore it.”A US energy official, Preston Wells Griffith, senior director for energy and environment, said on 10 December 2018: "We believe that no country should have to sacrifice economic prosperity or energy security in pursuit of environmental sustainability." He added also: "We can achieve all of these goals and they are complementary." During his speech, he reinforced that impression: "Alarmism should not silence realism."A youth conference with children representing over 30 countries was held during the conference.

The conference agreed on rules to implement the Paris Agreement, which will come into force in 2020, to say the rulebook on how governments will measure, report on their emissions-cutting efforts. Due to difficulty to reach agreement between parties, some difficult questions such as ways to scale up existing commitments on cutting emissions, ways to provide financial help for poor countries, wording that does not allow double counting and whether countries are doing enough to cut their emissions were postponed to the next conference. David Waskow, of the World Resources Institute, said the deal was "a good foundation for countries to go about implementing the Paris agreement" and added that "It sets the direction of travel and will spur countries to take action. Now countries need to go home and do their homework, by increasing their commitments "; some achievements have been made: 50 countries signed the “Solidarity and Just Transition Silesia Declaration”, which emphasizes the need for emission-reducing policies to include “a just transition of the workforce” and to create “decent work and quality jobs”.

The Polish presidency declared a “forests for climate” policy highlighting the important role of forests in solving climate problems. Some countries say that they will increase their climate pledges in 2020, including India, Canada and Jamaica. Several dozen countries forming “High Ambition Coalition” – including the EU, UK, France, Argentina and Canada – pledged to raise their targets by 2020. New members join the Powering Past Coal Alliance. Germany made a €70m contribution to the Adaptation Fund. Smaller pledges made by France, Sweden and the EU raised the total to $129m – an annual record for the fund. Germany gave €1.5bn for the Green Climate Fund – double their 2014 contribution. Norway pledged $516m to the Green Climate Fund; the World Bank gave $200bn for climate programms in 2021-2025, two times more that in 2015 - 2020. It was one of nine banks which pledged to “align... their activities” with the goals of the Paris Agreement. Five other banks – ING, BBVA, BNP Paribas, Société Générale and Standard Chartered – with a capital of €2.4tn, pledged to adjust the climate alignment of their lending portfolios to achieve the “well below 2C” target.

The UK say it will increase by £100m the funding for renewable energy projects in sub-Saharan Africa, by £170m the funding to support the creation low carbon industry in the UK by 2040. Maersk, the world's largest shipping company, said it will elim

Renée Bordereau

Renée Bordereau, nicknamed The Angevin, was a French woman who followed her father, disguised herself as a man, fought as a Royalist cavalier in the troops of Charles Melchior Artus de Bonchamps during the Vendéan insurrection against the French Revolution and took part in all battles of the war. She was born to peasant family south of France, she may have done some smuggling during her youth, carrying illegal salt between Brittany. Her father was part of the riots of the Revolution and as result, was executed by revolutionaries in December 1793, she is reputed to have killed some twenty of the opposing revolutionary Bleues including slitting the neck of her own uncle, a republican. A unit led by her threw six hundred Republican soldiers from the heights of Roche-de-Mûrs in the commune of Mûrs-Erigné, south of the town of Angers, Pays de la Loire, into the Louet River below, her effectiveness as a soldier is attested by independent sources, including Madame de La Rochejaquelein, who reported "She was of ordinary height and ugly.

One day at Cholet, they pointed her out to me.'See that soldier who has sleeves of a color different from his coat. That's a girl who fights like a lion.'... Her unbelievable courage was celebrated throughout the whole army." On one of her own experiences, Bordereau wrote: "Arriving near the Loire, I destroyed five of my enemies, finishing off the day, I broke my sword on the head of the last one... Seeing only one horseman near me, I doubled back to our army. I alone, killed twenty-one that day. I'm not the one who counted them, but those who followed me, if they hadn't said so, I wouldn't have spoken about it myself." "Renée Bordereau, whose father was butchered before her eyes, who lost forty-two relatives in the civil war of La Vendee. In one battle she killed twenty-one of the enemy, she liberated fifty priests at one time and eight hundred at another, all of whom would have been executed. A price of 40,000 francs was set on her head, she was thrown into prison for a crime for which she could only prove her innocence by a discovery of her sex, where she remained five years, until the accession of Louis Eighteenth to the throne of France."


Tissamaharama is a town in Hambantota District, Southern Province, Sri Lanka. It used to be the capital of the Sinhalese Kingdom of Ruhuna as early as the 3rd century B. C. Only few buildings from that period can still be seen today; the presence ordinary early Tamils in Tissamaharama was confirmed following archaeological excavations in 2010. The Tissamaharama Tamil Brahmi inscription, a fragment of black and red ware flat dish inscribed in Tamil in the Tamil Brahmi script was excavated at the earliest layer in the southern town; the large artificial Tissa Wewa lake, a part of a sophisticated irrigation system dates from that time. There are five main lakes in the vicinity of Tissamaharama: Tissa Wewa. Today, the town serves as a starting point for visits to Yala National Park and Kataragama. Tissamaharama Raja Maha Vihara

Palazzo Giusti

The Giusti Palace and Garden are located in the east of Verona, Italy, a short distance from Piazza Isolo and near the city centre. The palace was built in the sixteenth century; the garden is considered one of the finest examples of an Italian garden. The palace is a 16th-century Mannerist structure with a tower added in 1701; the Italian Renaissance gardens were planted in 1580 and are regarded as some of the most beautiful Renaissance gardens in Europe, a splendid park of terraces climbing upon the hill. They include a parterre and hedge maze, expansive vistas of the surrounding landscape from the terrace gardens. First, only two square parterres right and left hand of the cypress way were designed, a maze behind the right one, as figured in Nürnbergische Hesperides in 1714; some years four additional flower parterres were laid out left hand, as to be seen at a map in the Verona State Archives. The booklet, Il paradiso de' Fiori by Francesco Pona informs about the plants used in this time in Giardino Giusti as does some planting sketches by Pona included in the new edition of this book, Milano 2006.

The actual unifying layout of the garden parterres dates from early 20th century. The maze was reconstructed after 1945; the Giusti family, owner of the palace since the 16th century, was entitled by the Austro-Hungarian Emperor to change its original surname to "Giusti del Giardino" because of the importance of the gardens. Francesco Pona: Sileno overo Delle Bellezze del Luogo dell' Sig. Co. Gio. Giacomo Giusti, 1620 Angelo Tamo, Verona Francesco Pona: Il Paradiso de' Fiori overo Lo archetipo de' Giardini, 1622 Angelo Tamo, Verona Tulio Lenotti: Palazzi di Verona, 1964 Vita veronese, Verona Margherita Azzi Visentini: Il Giardino Veneziano: Storia e conservazione, Milano 1988, p. 110-113 Federico Dal Forno: Case e palazzi di Verona, 1973 Banca popolare di Verona, Verona Notiziario BPV: Numero 3, anno 1991. Paolo Villa: Giardino Giusti 1993-94 pdf, with maps and 200 photos Patrizia Floder Reitter: Case palazzi e ville di Verona e provincia, 1997 I. E. T. Edizioni, Verona Giorgio Forti: La scena urbana: strade e palazzi di Verona e provincia, 2000 Athesis, Verona Mario Luciolli Passeggiando tra i palazzi di Verona 2003 Garda

1994–95 NHL lockout

The 1994–95 NHL lockout was a lockout that came after a year of National Hockey League hockey, played without a collective bargaining agreement. The lockout was a subject of dispute as the players sought collective bargaining and owners sought to help franchises that had a weaker market as well as make sure they could cap the rising salaries of players; the lockout caused the 1994–95 season to be shortened to 48 games instead of 84, the shortest season in 53 years. Much like the 2004–05 NHL lockout, the big issue was the implementation of a salary cap; the NHL owners were in favor of the cap while the players were opposed to it. The NHL wanted to levy a luxury tax, a financial penalty, assigned by the league, on salaries that were higher than the average. However, the NHL's Player Association viewed that as a variation on a salary cap and refused to accept it; this came right off the heels of the 1992 walkout by players, which interrupted the race for the Stanley Cup. This 3 month, 1 week, 3 day lockout stretched from October 1, 1994, to January 11, 1995.

A total of 468 games were lost due to the lockout, along with the All-Star Game. Unlike the league's future lockouts, the players went to training camp. However, as these camps came to a close it was obvious that there was to be labor talks in the near future; as noted, the NHL wanted to levy a luxury tax on salaries that were higher than the average and the NHLPA viewed that as a variation on a salary cap and refused to accept it. Unlike in the 1992 strike, it was the owners who wanted to make sure that they got the right deal and this was under a new commissioner Gary Bettman. There were a few issues that the owners wanted to work out, most of which revolved around salary caps, free agency and hoping to limit escalating salaries. Bettman's "NHL mandate was: aggressive expansion, a new American TV deal, a focus on growth, lasting labor peace … under the owners' terms, of course.". It was assumed that to reach this peace a salary cap would have to be in place. Bettman's insisted the owners' plan was a tax plan, but would result the same as a salary cap.

Under the leadership of Bob Goodenow, the players decided that they would be open to a small tax, however the bulk of the financial goals could be achieved through revenue sharing. Going into the negotiations both the players and the owners agreed on one big issue, the small market franchises; the league wanted to tie salaries to revenue in order to subsidize the operation of weaker teams while the NHL Players' Association sought revenue sharing to help the smaller market teams. The lockout attracted the attention of worldwide negotiation experts. An op-ed article in The New York Times by James K. Sebenius and his colleague Prof. Michael A. Wheeler brought to prominence a suggestion from fellow professors Howard Raiffa and David Lax: Revenue should flow into a separate escrow account touched by neither players nor owners until the dispute was resolved; this suggestion was not adopted. After the lockout had dragged on talk on for certain time, the talk of salary cap faded and new items entered the debate.

Talk of rookie salary cap, changes to the arbitration system, loosened free agency. However, large market teams such as Toronto, the New York Rangers and Philadelphia broke with the league, as they feared that an extended lockout would outweigh the benefits from getting a salary cap and didn't want to be the first league in North America to forfeit an entire season just to help out their small-market colleagues. While some NHL players decided to play in various European leagues, others decided to remain in North America. Around that time, the "4-on-4 Challenge" was initiated; this NHLPA organized tournament was played over the course of three days from the 10th to the 12th of November 1994 during the owners' lockout of 1994–95. In the end, Team Ontario defeated Team USA, Team Western Canada and Team Quebec to win the tournament, which raised more than half a million dollars to support the Ronald McDonald Children's Charities of Canada and minor hockey associations throughout North America. Many NHL superstars, notably Patrick Roy, Luc Robitaille, Brett Hull, Joe Sakic, Doug Gilmour, Rob Blake and Mike Richter, took part in this competition.

In the meantime, Wayne Gretzky and some friends formed the Ninety Nine All Stars Tour and played some exhibition games in various countries. The lockout ended on January 11, 1995; as a result, the league shortened the season length from 84 games, the length of the previous two seasons, to 48. Furthermore, the season would last from January 20 to May 3. Regular-season games would be limited to intra-conference play. During the lockout, the NHL and NHLPA agreed to shorten future seasons to 82 games. San Jose, to host the All-Star game that year, was awarded the 1997 game instead; the lockout would lead to two Canadian teams moving to the United States—the Quebec Nordiques moved to Denver in the summer of 1995 and became the Colorado Avalanche, the original Winnipeg Jets moved to Phoenix and became the Phoenix Coyotes in the summer of 1996. The Hartford Whalers became the Carolina Hurricanes in 1997; the Avalanche and Hurricanes would win the Stanley Cup within the next decade. There was another lockout in 2004–05, which resulted in that season being canceled altogether.

On September 16, 2012 another lockout started, but it ended on January 6, 2013. The 1994–1995 lockout had created re