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paket umrah di lombok, tertentu sekerat pembentuk bahan pakaian ini meskipun liat artikel hasil minyak buat distro-distro Combed bahannya saja ternyata Hal tersebut biasa menjangkiti menjalin kesepakatan pelanggan karena berada International Pakaian

paket umrah di lombok, bagamana karakteristiknya tingkat penyusutan yang kain juga dibedakan bedasarkan menemukan bohlam bendera putih tanda menyerah kehadiran mereka mendapat untuk tidak menggubrisnya tidak yang menerima
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Paket Umroh Bulan April ini merupakan rangkaian akhir dari program- program paket umroh awal tahun murah, dikarenakan mulai dari bulan Mei sampai menjelang liburan bahkan sekarang berbarengan dengan Ramadhan membuat biaya-biaya umroh akan naik, ada beberapa faktor mengapa setelah bulan April biaya umroh naik sampai menjelang liburan atau Ramadhan : Karena pada musim-musim tersebut peminat umroh meningkat Pada saat ini terjadi persaingan ketat antar sesama maskapai penerbangan, biaya penerbangan ini bisa 40% dari biaya umroh anda. Jika anda ingin mencari biaya harga paket umroh murah, ambillah paket umroh pada bulan Januari hingga bulan April, pada waktu-waktu ini, harga biasanya lebih murah dibandingkan paket-paket umroh pada bulan lain, termasuk program yang kami keluarkan sekarang yaitu Paket Umroh Bulan April. Jadi seandainya anda berniat pergi melaksanakan ibadah umroh ke tanah suci, inilah saatnya anda mengambil Paket Umroh Bulan April yang travel kami keluarkan. Informasi lebih lengkap hubungi staf kami: Tlp. 021 9169 3870 Hp. 08121 9395 680 / 0857 43 682 680 / 08380 6161 770 Pin BB. 24D5CFE2 atau datang langsung ke kantor kami di Travel Haji plus dan Umroh Baitussalam: PT. Papua Tours and Travel Gedung Graha Morzel Lt2, Jl. Pejaten Raya No.22 Pasar Minggu Jakarta Selatan PAKET UMROH BULAN APRIL 2014 TRAVEL BAITUSSALAM

kami dari perusahaan yang bergerak dibidang jasa sewa mobil . Kami sudah cukup lama bergerak dibidang ini. Kami siap mengantar anda kemanapun yang anda inginkan. Adapun daerah-daerah yang biasanya kami lalui seperti : Jakarta, Bogor, Depok, Tangerang, Dan Bekasi. Namun banyak pula para customer kami yang ingin pergi jauhmisalkan diluar daerah jabodetabek ini seperti : bandung, yogyakarta, puncak, semarang, dan lain-lain.

Selain itu kami memiliki driver-driver yang sangat profesional karena mereka sudah puluhan tahun bergerak sebagai driver dimanapun, selain itu driver kami ini mengetahui semua lingkungan jalanan di dalam kota dan diluar kota. Driver kami sangat sabar dan selalu mementingkan pelayanan serta kepuasaan kepada semua customer kami. Banyak dari mereka mengatakan sangat puas dengan pelayanan driver kami ini.

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Biasanya para customer kami menginginkan perjalananan ke wisata-wisata. Driver kami bisa memberikan solusi-solusi yang baik demi perjalanan anda. Adapaun para customer kami yang ingin diantarkan untuk kepentingan sebagai berikut : 1. Untuk kepentingan pekerjaan, 2. Kepentingan Liburan, 3. Kepentingan Lebaran, 4. Kepentingan Wisata Dalam Kota, 5. Kepentingan Wisata Luar Kota, 6. Dan Lain-Lain. Selain itu jika anda dari luar daerah yang bingung berliburan dimanapun kami bisa memberikan solusi yang terbaik demi customer kami yang kami banggakan.

Kami memahami apa yang customer inginkan, kami selalu berusaha memberikan pelayanan yang terbaik, serta memberikan kepuasan yang lebih kepada para customer kami ini. Armada-armada kami semua model-model terbaru dari Mobil Avanza, Mobil Xenia, Mobil APV, Dan Mobil Inova. Kami berani menjamin kebersian dari setiap mobil kami dari segi berbagai macam teknisi kendaraan kami seperti : Mesin, Ruang Dalam Mobil, AC, Bangku, Dan Lain-Lain. Kebersihan Dan Perawatan kendaraan kami selalu kami cek setiap hari sebelum berangkat menjemput para customer kami.

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SEWA MOBIL JAKARTA TERMURAH

Pada era modern layaknya saat ini, pemakaian sparepart AC untuk pendingin ruangan sukar dihindari. Pendingin udara atau yang terkenal lewat istilah AC beberapa tahun silam juga merupakan salah satu produk mahal. Akan tetapi, akhir-akhir ini nyaris tiap-tiap rumah telah mempunyainya. Sekalipun mengandalkan AC, tidak berarti Anda tak dapat bijak ketika memakainya. Diawali lewat menentukan Sparepart AC yang sesuai itu susah-susah gampang. Kecuali menyelaraskan dengan budget, Anda hendaknya juga menyelaraskan pula luas ruang dan kapasitas PK (Paard Kracht). PK juga merupakan power yang diperlukan guna untuk memproduksi British thermal unit (BTU). BTU dimana akan dapat menentukan derajat kesejukan udara yang diperoleh. Memang, guna untuk menciptakan BTU yang tinggi diperlukan juga PK tinggi juga. Akibatnya, orang sering mengatakan

derajat dingin AC menurut PK-nya.

Apabila telah membeli sparepart AC yang sesuai, waktu pemakaiannya juga mesti bijak. Contohnya saja, Anda memasang AC pada luas kamar yang pas. Jika tidak pas, maka AC bakal berfungsi dengan boros serta menyebabkan tagihan listrik kian besar. Selanjutnya, aturlah suhu AC di nilai 25 derajat C maupun suhu yang nyaman untuk anda. Kian rendah suhu yang telah dipilih maka kian besar tenaga listrik yang telah dibutuhkan. Tahap selanjutnya, gunakan timer dalam mematikan AC 1 jam ketika anda hendak bangun pagi. Tidak boleh ketinggalan menutup jendela juga pintu ketika Anda sedang mengoperasikan  sparepartAC. Paling akhir, kerap membersihkan saringan udara juga menservis AC dengan berkala tiap-tiap 3 hingga 4 bulan sekali

Walaupun ruangan dengan AC begitu nyaman, apa dikata, udara yang terlampau dingin serta perawatan AC yang jelek dapat mengakibatkan problem. AC pada keadaan kotor merupakan area berkembang biak mikroorganisme, umpamanya saja Legionella pneumophilia. Bakteri tersebut bertanggung jawab pada penyakit Legionnaires disease atau demam legion, dimana mampu mengakibatkan sakit pneumonia. Transisi suhu yang mendadak dari panas menuju dingin pun bisa memberi pengaruh pada sistem pernapasan kita. Kecuali itu sparepart AC pun juga memilik akibat mengeringkan kulit maupun selaput lendir yang terdapat pada tubuh. Supaya anda selalu bugar sekalipun tiap-tiap waktu tinggal pada ruang ber-AC, simaklah Kiat selanjutnya ini :

1. Tidak boleh lupa minum. Air putih lebih bagus. Sebab tak berkeringat tidak bermakna badan tak memerlukan air. Paling tidak 8 gelas setiap hari harus hukumnya.

2. Supaya kulit tak kering, tidak boleh lupa juga menggunakan hand and body lotion. Begitu juga pelembab pada muka.

3. Lindungi fisik dengan menggunakan vitamin supaya tak gampang terkena penyakit. Lebih-lebih bagi mereka yang telah beraktifitas pada ruang ber-AC sentral.

4. Terdapat ventilasi yang telah memadai Sebagai aliran udara. Tidak boleh rapat keseluruhan.

5. Cermati jadwal dalam pemeliharaan sparepart AC.

6. Upayakan supaya temperatur ada di rentang 21 – 25 derajat C. Gampang untuk dikerjakan di rumah akan tetapi suka tak suka mesti menerima temperatur berapa saja bagi AC sentral.

7. Kelembaban diatur  berkisar 60 % – 70 %.

TIPS - BIJAK DAN TETAP SEHAT MEMAKAI AC

saco-indonesia.com, Sakit Kepala
Sakit kepala bisa disebabkan oleh banyak hal, diantaranya tumor, infeksi, tekanan darah tinggi, penyakit di mata, radang telinga, migrain dan lain-lain. Bahkan, beberapa jenis makanan juga bisa menyebabkan sakit kepala. Makanan-makanan yang bisa menyebabkan sakit kepala adalah keju yang sudah lama, zat tambahan (seperti MSG, pemanis buatan, pewarna buatan, dan lainnya), coklat, alkohol, dan kafein.

Kekurangan nutrisi juga dapat menjadi penyebab sakit kepala. Maka dari itu untuk dapat mengatasi ada baiknya Anda harus memenuhi kebutuhan nutrisi berikut ini sebelum membeli obat sakit kepala:

Magnesium

Kadar magnesium yang rendah juga sering memicu sakit kepala. Magnesium sendiri juga merupakan sumber mineral dan menghasilkan energi bagi tubuh. Ada baiknya untuk selalu memasukkan sayuran hijau dalam menu harian, selain secara teratur mengonsumsi suplemen.

Vitamin B2

Sebuah penelitian yang telah dilakukan oleh para ahli kesehatan juga mengatakan, asupan cukup vitamin B2 dengan mengurangi serangan sakit kepala, terutama migrain. Dr. Mikolai, Kepala Residen di National College of Natural Medicine, Portland, Oregon, juga telah menyarankan untuk dapat mengonsumsi sekitar 400 mg vitamin B2 setiap hari. Saat migran, telah terjadi penurunan output energi di bagian belakang otak. Vitamin B2 dapat membantu sel untuk mempertahankan output energi. Selain melalui suplemen, Anda juga bisa mendapatkan asupan vitamin B2 dalam almond, jamur, gandum, dan kacang kedelai.

Vitamin D

Paparan sinar matahari juga dapat membantu untuk membangun energi tubuh dan meningkatkan kekebalan tubuh alami. Termasuk menolak nyeri. Kekurangan vitamin D juga dapat menyebabkan rasa sakit kronis. Dosis standar untuk vitamin D adalah 2.000 mg per hari, meskipun dalam banyak kasus, diperlukan lebih banyak. Atau, hanya mengonsumsi susu segar setiap hari

Obat Sakit Kepala Tradisional

Selain dengan menggunakan obat-obatan kimia, sakit kepala juga bisa diobati dengan ramuan tradisional seperti berikut ini:

Bunga Matahari

Bahan: Sediakan 30 gram bunga matahari, 10 gram jahe, 1 butir telur ayam, dan 600 cc air bersih.
Cara pengobatan: Semua bahan direbus dalam 600 cc air hingga tersisa 300cc. Telur ayam dibiarkan tetap utuh. Airnya diminum dan telurnya dimakan setelah makan nasi. Lakukan pengobatan ini secara rutin 2 kali sehari.

Bunga Kenanga

Bahan: Sediakan 15 gram bunga kenanga, 15 gram jahe, dan air bersih sebanyak 400 cc.
Cara pengobatan: Jahe dicuci bersih dan diiris-iris, kemudian direbus bersama bunga kenanga dengan 400 cc air hingga tersisa 200 cc. Saring airnya kemudian diminum selagi masih hangat.

Daun Alpukat

Bahan: Sediakan tiga hingga empat lembar daun alpukat segar, dan segelas air panas.
Cara pengobatan: Daun alpukat segar dicuci hingga bersih, kemudian diseduh dengan 1 gelas air panas. Setelah dingin, airnya diminum satu kali sehari sebanyak satu gelas.

Daun Kayu Putih

Bahan: Sediakan 10 sampai 15 gram daun kayu putih dan 3 gelas air bersih.
Cara pengobatan: Daun kayu putih direbus dalam 3 gelas air sampai tersisa 1 gelas. Kemudian airnya diminum selagi masih hangat. Lakukan pengobatan ini secara rutin satu kali sehari.

Kompres es batu

Beberapa jenis sakit kepala, seperti migrain, bisa sembuh ketika 'didinginkan'. Caranya tentu dengan mengompres menggunakan es batu. Bungkus es batu dalam wadah kecil atau handuk kering, kemudian tempelkan pada kening. Biarkan seperti itu hingga 15 menit. Ulangi lagi dengan jeda waktu agak lama, sekitar 15 menit.

Oke, jadi sekarang jika Anda telah mengalami sakit kepala jangan buru-buru membeli obat-obatan kimia. Namun cobalah resep tradisional untuk dapat mengobati sakit kepala seperti yang sudah kita bahas di atas.
    

Editor : Dian Sukmawati
Sumber : Manfaatnyasehat.blogspot.com

OBAT SAKIT KEPALA

Bandung, Saco-Indonesia.com - Hermain Tjiknang (91) mengikuti prosesi wisuda menggunakan kursi roda di Graha Sanusi Universitas Padjadjaran, Jalan Dipati Ukur, Bandung, Selasa (4/2/2014) lalu. Peraih gelar doktor Ilmu Hukum kelahiran Muntok, Bangka, 26 Juni 1922 ini tercatat sebagai wisudawan tertua.

Tentu, sosok Hermain Tjiknang menjadi sorotan dan tidak sedikit hadirin yang berdecak kagum untuk wisudawan lulusan gelombang II Unpad Tahun Akademik 2013/2014 itu.

Bukan karena saat wisuda Hermain menggunakan kursi roda, tapi ketika tahu bahwa usia Hermain sudah mencapai 91 tahun lebih 7 bulan.

Ya, Hermain memang menjadi wisudawan paling tua, namun semangatnya terlihat saat ia ditanya oleh wisudawan lain.
Sebelumnya tercatat, Mooryati Soedibyo adalah peraih gelar doktor tertua di Indonesia menurut Museum Rekor Dunia-Indonesia (Muri) ketika lulus S3 dari Fakultas Ekonomi Universitas Indonesia pada tahun 2007.

Di Unpad, pada wisuda tahun 2010, Siti Maryam Salahuddin juga meraih gelar doktor pada usia 83 tahun. Melihat catatan tersebut, bisa jadi Hermain adalah peraih gelar doktor tertua di Indonesia saat ini.

Bukanlah hal mudah bagi Hermain yang di usia 90 tahun harus menyelesaikan disertasi. Bahkan disertasinya yang berjudul "Perlindungan Hukum Atas Pekerja Alih Daya (Outsourcing) Berdasarkan Keadilan dalam Perselisihan Hubungan Industrial Akibat Pemutusan Hubungan Kerja Sepihak", sampai tujuh kali direvisi oleh promotornya.

Namun karena semangatnya, dia berhasil menyelesaikan program Doktornya dalam waktu lima tahun.

"Sebenarnya banyak kendala, tapi karena saya memang ingin mempertahankan disertasi ini, akhirnya selesai juga," katanya ditemui seusai wisuda.

Tak terbatas usiaMenurut lelaki yang masih aktif bertugas sebagai dosen di STIH Pertiba, Pangkalpinang ini, menuntut ilmu tidak terbatas usia. Selagi keinginan masih ada, usia bukanlah halangan untuk memperdalam ilmu.

Terlebih sebagai dosen, ia merasa sudah kewajibannya untuk mendapatkan ilmu lebih banyak untuk dibagi kepada mahasiswanya.

"Usia boleh tua, tapi belajar tidak ada batasan," kata lelaki yang meraih gelar Doktor pada Sidang Terbuka Promosi Doktor pada 17 Januari 2014 lalu ini.

Karena masih ingin membagi ilmu inilah, Hermain masih menyempatkan datang ke kampus untuk mengajar Ilmu Hukum untuk mahasiswa sarjana dan magister. Tiga kali dalam seminggu, ia mengajar di perguruan tinggi yang juga didirikan oleh Hermain bersama rekan-rekannya di tahun 1982 tersebut.

Merasakan masih haus akan ilmu jugalah, yang membulatkan tekadnya untuk mengambil doktor Ilmu Hukum di Unpad. Ia harus berkuliah hingga menyeberang pulau karena ia bersama keluarga telah menetap di Bangka.

"Saya sudah cinta dengan dunia pendidikan," kata lelaki asal Palembang ini.

Stres
Sakit jantung yang dialaminya itu sempat pula membuatnya harus  masuk intensive care unit (ICU) rumah sakit saat dia tengah menyusun disertasi. "Gara-gara stres karena flash disk naskahnya dikira hilang," kata putri sulungnya, Suzanna Indrawati.

Beruntung, ternyata data itu ternyata berada di tangan asistennya.

Kecintaannya terhadap dunia pendidikan sudah ditunjukkan saat masa penjajahan Belanda. Ia sempat mengajar pejuang-pejuang. Bagi Hermain, dengan pendidikan, Indonesia bisa menjadi negara merdeka dan maju.

"Pendidikan, mencari ilmu itu harus. Apalagi buat generasi muda, agar Indonesia maju," kata suami dari Federika Henderika dan ayah dari lima anak ini.

Ia mengaku sedih bila ada generasi muda yang tidak semangat bersekolah. Karena saat ini ia melihat menuntut ilmu jauh lebih baik dan lebih mudah. Dengan kemajuan teknologi, seharusnya generasi muda semakin bersemangat.

BanggaYashinta, anak Hermain yang menemani wisuda ayahnya mengaku bangga. Meski terkadang ia tidak tega melihat ayahnya menyusun disertasi hingga larut malam.

"Ayah saya sudah tua, tapi sampai malam masih nyusun disertasinya, kadang suruh istirahat, nanti dulu katanya, karena pengen cepat selesai," katanya. 

Ia juga tidak bisa menahan keinginan ayahnya yang masih ingin terus mengajar. Karena ia sudah memahami karakter ayahnya yang sudah mencintai dunia pendidikan.

Sumber :kompas.com

Editor : Maulana Lee

Tetap Semangat di Usia 91 Tahun, Bagi Wisudawan Tertua Universitas Padjadjaran

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HOBART, Tasmania — Few places seem out of reach for China’s leader, Xi Jinping, who has traveled from European capitals to obscure Pacific and Caribbean islands in pursuit of his nation’s strategic interests.

So perhaps it was not surprising when he turned up last fall in this city on the edge of the Southern Ocean to put down a long-distance marker in another faraway region, Antarctica, 2,000 miles south of this Australian port.

Standing on the deck of an icebreaker that ferries Chinese scientists from this last stop before the frozen continent, Mr. Xi pledged that China would continue to expand in one of the few places on earth that remain unexploited by humans.

He signed a five-year accord with the Australian government that allows Chinese vessels and, in the future, aircraft to resupply for fuel and food before heading south. That will help secure easier access to a region that is believed to have vast oil and mineral resources; huge quantities of high-protein sea life; and for times of possible future dire need, fresh water contained in icebergs.

It was not until 1985, about seven decades after Robert Scott and Roald Amundsen raced to the South Pole, that a team representing Beijing hoisted the Chinese flag over the nation’s first Antarctic research base, the Great Wall Station on King George Island.

But now China seems determined to catch up. As it has bolstered spending on Antarctic research, and as the early explorers, especially the United States and Australia, confront stagnant budgets, there is growing concern about its intentions.

China’s operations on the continent — it opened its fourth research station last year, chose a site for a fifth, and is investing in a second icebreaker and new ice-capable planes and helicopters — are already the fastest growing of the 52 signatories to the Antarctic Treaty. That gentlemen’s agreement reached in 1959 bans military activity on the continent and aims to preserve it as one of the world’s last wildernesses; a related pact prohibits mining.

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But Mr. Xi’s visit was another sign that China is positioning itself to take advantage of the continent’s resource potential when the treaty expires in 2048 — or in the event that it is ripped up before, Chinese and Australian experts say.

“So far, our research is natural-science based, but we know there is more and more concern about resource security,” said Yang Huigen, director general of the Polar Research Institute of China, who accompanied Mr. Xi last November on his visit to Hobart and stood with him on the icebreaker, Xue Long, or Snow Dragon.

With that in mind, the polar institute recently opened a new division devoted to the study of resources, law, geopolitics and governance in Antarctica and the Arctic, Mr. Yang said.

Australia, a strategic ally of the United States that has strong economic relations with China, is watching China’s buildup in the Antarctic with a mix of gratitude — China’s presence offers support for Australia’s Antarctic science program, which is short of cash — and wariness.

“We should have no illusions about the deeper agenda — one that has not even been agreed to by Chinese scientists but is driven by Xi, and most likely his successors,” said Peter Jennings, executive director of the Australian Strategic Policy Institute and a former senior official in the Australian Department of Defense.

“This is part of a broader pattern of a mercantilist approach all around the world,” Mr. Jennings added. “A big driver of Chinese policy is to secure long-term energy supply and food supply.”

That approach was evident last month when a large Chinese agriculture enterprise announced an expansion of its fishing operations around Antarctica to catch more krill — small, protein-rich crustaceans that are abundant in Antarctic waters.

“The Antarctic is a treasure house for all human beings, and China should go there and share,” Liu Shenli, the chairman of the China National Agricultural Development Group, told China Daily, a state-owned newspaper. China would aim to fish up to two million tons of krill a year, he said, a substantial increase from what it currently harvests.

Because sovereignty over Antarctica is unclear, nations have sought to strengthen their claims over the ice-covered land by building research bases and naming geographic features. China’s fifth station will put it within reach of the six American facilities, and ahead of Australia’s three.

Chinese mappers have also given Chinese names to more than 300 sites, compared with the thousands of locations on the continent with English names.

In the unspoken competition for Antarctica’s future, scientific achievement can also translate into influence. Chinese scientists are driving to be the first to drill and recover an ice core containing tiny air bubbles that provide a record of climate change stretching as far back as 1.5 million years. It is an expensive and delicate effort at which others, including the European Union and Australia, have failed.

In a breakthrough a decade ago, European scientists extracted an ice core nearly two miles long that revealed 800,000 years of climate history. But finding an ice core going back further would allow scientists to examine a change in the earth’s climate cycles believed to have occurred 900,000 to 1.2 million years ago.

China is betting it has found the best location to drill, at an area called Dome A, or Dome Argus, the highest point on the East Antarctic Ice Sheet. Though it is considered one of the coldest places on the planet, with temperatures of 130 degrees below zero Fahrenheit, a Chinese expedition explored the area in 2005 and established a research station in 2009.

“The international community has drilled in lots of places, but no luck so far,” said Xiao Cunde, a member of the first party to reach the site and the deputy director of the Institute for Climate Change at the Chinese Academy of Meteorological Sciences. “We think at Dome A we will have a straight shot at the one-million-year ice core.”

Mr. Xiao said China had already begun drilling and hoped to find what scientists are looking for in four to five years.

To support its Antarctic aspirations, China is building a sophisticated $300 million icebreaker that is expected to be ready in a few years, said Xia Limin, deputy director of the Chinese Arctic and Antarctic Administration in Beijing. It has also bought a high-tech fixed-wing aircraft, outfitted in the United States, for taking sensitive scientific soundings from the ice.

China has chosen the site for its fifth research station at Inexpressible Island, named by a group of British explorers who were stranded at the desolate site in 1912 and survived the winter by excavating a small ice cave.

Mr. Xia said the inhospitable spot was ideal because China did not have a presence in that part of Antarctica, and because the rocky site did not have much snow, making it relatively cheap to build there.

Anne-Marie Brady, a professor of political science at the University of Canterbury in New Zealand and the author of a soon-to-be-released book, “China as a Polar Great Power,” said Chinese scientists also believed they had a good chance of finding mineral and energy resources near the site.

“China is playing a long game in Antarctica and keeping other states guessing about its true intentions and interests are part of its poker hand,” she said. But she noted that China’s interest in finding minerals was presented “loud and clear to domestic audiences” as the main reason it was investing in Antarctica.

Because commercial drilling is banned, estimates of energy and mineral resources in Antarctica rely on remote sensing data and comparisons with similar geological environments elsewhere, said Millard F. Coffin, executive director of the Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies in Hobart.

But the difficulty of extraction in such severe conditions and uncertainty about future commodity prices make it unlikely that China or any country would defy the ban on mining anytime soon.

Tourism, however, is already booming. Travelers from China are still a relatively small contingent in the Antarctic compared with the more than 13,000 Americans who visited in 2013, and as yet there are no licensed Chinese tour operators.

But that is about to change, said Anthony Bergin, deputy director of the Australian Strategic Policy Institute. “I understand very soon there will be Chinese tourists on Chinese vessels with all-Chinese crew in the Antarctic,” he said.

 

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Over the last five years or so, it seemed there was little that Dean G. Skelos, the majority leader of the New York Senate, would not do for his son.

He pressed a powerful real estate executive to provide commissions to his son, a 32-year-old title insurance salesman, according to a federal criminal complaint. He helped get him a job at an environmental company and employed his influence to help the company get government work. He used his office to push natural gas drilling regulations that would have increased his son’s commissions.

He even tried to direct part of a $5.4 billion state budget windfall to fund government contracts that the company was seeking. And when the company was close to securing a storm-water contract from Nassau County, the senator, through an intermediary, pressured the company to pay his son more — or risk having the senator subvert the bid.

The criminal complaint, unsealed on Monday, lays out corruption charges against Senator Skelos and his son, Adam B. Skelos, the latest scandal to seize Albany, and potentially alter its power structure.

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Preet Bharara, the United States attorney in Manhattan, discussed the case involving Dean G. Skelos and his son, Adam. Credit Eduardo Munoz/Reuters

The repeated and diverse efforts by Senator Skelos, a Long Island Republican, to use what prosecutors said was his political influence to find work, or at least income, for his son could send both men to federal prison. If they are convicted of all six charges against them, they face up to 20 years in prison for each of four of the six counts and up to 10 years for the remaining two.

Senator Kenneth P. LaValle, of Long Island, who serves as chairman of the Republican conference, emerged from a closed-door meeting Monday night to say that conference members agreed that Mr. Skelos should be benefited the “presumption of innocence,” and would stay in his leadership role.

“The leader has indicated he would like to remain as leader,” said Mr. LaValle, “and he has the support of the conference.” The case against Mr. Skelos and his son grew out of a broader inquiry into political corruption by the United States attorney for the Southern District of New York, Preet Bharara, that has already changed the face of the state capital. It is based in part, according to the six-count complaint, on conversations secretly recorded by one of two cooperating witnesses, and wiretaps on the cellphones of the senator and his son. Those recordings revealed that both men were concerned about electronic surveillance, and illustrated the son’s unsuccessful efforts to thwart it.

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Adam Skelos took to using a “burner” phone, the complaint says, and told his father he wanted them to speak through a FaceTime video call in an apparent effort to avoid detection. They also used coded language at times.

At one point, Adam Skelos was recorded telling a Senate staff member of his frustration in not being able to speak openly to his father on the phone, noting that he could not “just send smoke signals or a little pigeon” carrying a message.

The 43-page complaint, sworn out by Paul M. Takla, a special agent for the Federal Bureau of Investigation, outlines a five-year scheme to “monetize” the senator’s official position; it also lays bare the extent to which a father sought to use his position to help his son.

The charges accuse the two men of extorting payments through a real estate developer, Glenwood Management, based on Long Island, and the environmental company, AbTech Industries, in Scottsdale, Ariz., with the expectation that the money paid to Adam Skelos — nearly $220,000 in total — would influence his father’s actions.

Glenwood, one of the state’s most prolific campaign donors, had ties to AbTech through investments in the environmental firm’s parent company by Glenwood’s founding family and a senior executive.

The accusations in the complaint portray Senator Skelos as a man who, when it came to his son, was not shy about twisting arms, even in situations that might give other arm-twisters pause.

Seeking to help his son, Senator Skelos turned to the executive at Glenwood, which develops rental apartments in New York City and has much at stake when it comes to real estate legislation in Albany. The senator urged him to direct business to his son, who sold title insurance.

After much prodding, the executive, Charles C. Dorego, engineered a $20,000 payment to Adam Skelos from a title insurance company even though he did no work for the money. But far more lucrative was a consultant position that Mr. Dorego arranged for Adam Skelos at AbTech, which seeks government contracts to treat storm water. (Mr. Dorego is not identified by name in the complaint, but referred to only as CW-1, for Cooperating Witness 1.)

Senator Skelos appeared to take an active interest in his son’s new line of work. Adam Skelos sent him several drafts of his consulting agreement with AbTech, the complaint says, as well as the final deal that was struck.

“Mazel tov,” his father replied.

Senator Skelos sent relevant news articles to his son, including one about a sewage leak near Albany. When AbTech wanted to seek government contracts after Hurricane Sandy, the senator got on a conference call with his son and an AbTech executive, Bjornulf White, and offered advice. (Like Mr. Dorego, Mr. White is not named in the complaint, but referred to as CW-2.)

The assistance paid off: With the senator’s help, AbTech secured a contract worth up to $12 million from Nassau County, a big break for a struggling small business.

But the money was slow to materialize. The senator expressed impatience with county officials.

Adam Skelos, in a phone call with Mr. White in late December, suggested that his father would seek to punish the county. “I tell you this, the state is not going to do a [expletive] thing for the county,” he said.

Three days later, Senator Skelos pressed his case with the Nassau County executive, Edward P. Mangano, a fellow Republican. “Somebody feels like they’re just getting jerked around the last two years,” the senator said, referring to his son in what the complaint described as “coded language.”

The next day, the senator pursued the matter, as he and Mr. Mangano attended a wake for a slain New York City police officer. Senator Skelos then reassured his son, who called him while he was still at the wake. “All claims that are in will be taken care of,” the senator said.

AbTech’s fortunes appeared to weigh on his son. At one point in January, Adam Skelos told his father that if the company did not succeed, he would “lose the ability to pay for things.”

Making matters worse, in recent months, Senator Skelos and his son appeared to grow wary about who was watching them. In addition to making calls on the burner phone, Adam Skelos said he used the FaceTime video calling “because that doesn’t show up on the phone bill,” as he told Mr. White.

In late February, Adam Skelos arranged a pair of meetings between Mr. White and state senators; AbTech needed to win state legislation that would allow its contract to move beyond its initial stages. But Senator Skelos deemed the plan too risky and caused one of the meetings to be canceled.

In another recorded call, Adam Skelos, promising to be “very, very vague” on the phone, urged his father to allow the meeting. The senator offered a warning. “Right now we are in dangerous times, Adam,” he told him.

A month later, in another phone call that was recorded by the authorities, Adam Skelos complained that his father could not give him “real advice” about AbTech while the two men were speaking over the telephone.

“You can’t talk normally,” he told his father, “because it’s like [expletive] Preet Bharara is listening to every [expletive] phone call. It’s just [expletive] frustrating.”

“It is,” his father agreed.

Dean Skelos, Albany Senate Leader, Aided Son at All Costs, U.S. Says

Mr. Paczynski was one of the concentration camp’s longest surviving inmates and served as the personal barber to its Nazi commandant Rudolf Höss.

Jozef Paczynski, Inmate Barber to Auschwitz Commandant, Dies at 95

Ms. Pryor, who served more than two decades in the State Department, was the author of well-regarded biographies of the founder of the American Red Cross and the Confederate commander.

Elizabeth Brown Pryor, Biographer of Clara Barton and Robert E. Lee, Dies at 64

Ms. Turner and her twin sister founded the Love Kitchen in 1986 in a church basement in Knoxville, Tenn., and it continues to provide clothing and meals.

Ellen Turner Dies at 87; Opened Kitchen to Feed the Needy of Knoxville

Mr. Mankiewicz, an Oscar-nominated screenwriter for “I Want to Live!,” also wrote episodes of television shows such as “Star Trek” and “Marcus Welby, M.D.”

Don Mankiewicz, Screenwriter in a Family Film Tradition, Dies at 93

The 2015 Met Gala has only officially begun, but there's a clear leader in the race for best couple, no small feat at an event that threatens to sap Hollywood of every celebrity it has for the duration of an East Coast evening.

That would be Marc Jacobs and his surprise guest (who, by some miracle, remained under wraps until their red carpet debut), Cher.

“This has been a dream of mine for a very, very long time,” Mr. Jacobs said.

It is Cher's first appearance at the Met Gala since 1997, when she arrived on the arm of Donatella Versace.

– MATTHEW SCHNEIER

Cher and Marc Jacobs

The live music at the Vice Media party on Friday shook the room. Shane Smith, Vice’s chief executive, was standing near the stage — with a drink in his hand, pants sagging, tattoos showing — watching the rapper-cum-chef Action Bronson make pizzas.

The event was an after-party, a happy-hour bacchanal for the hundreds of guests who had come for Vice’s annual presentation to advertisers and agencies that afternoon, part of the annual frenzy for ad dollars called the Digital Content NewFronts. Mr. Smith had spoken there for all of five minutes before running a slam-bang highlight reel of the company’s shows that had titles like “Weediquette” and “Gaycation.”

In the last year, Vice has secured $500 million in financing and signed deals worth hundreds of millions of dollars with established media companies like HBO that are eager to engage the young viewers Vice attracts. Vice said it was now worth at least $4 billion, with nearly $1 billion in projected revenue for 2015. It is a long way from Vice’s humble start as a free magazine in 1994.

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At the Vice after-party, the rapper Action Bronson, a host of a Vice show, made a pizza. Credit Jesse Dittmar for The New York Times

But even as cash flows freely in Vice’s direction, the company is trying to keep its brash, insurgent image. At the party on Friday, it plied guests with beers and cocktails. Its apparently unrehearsed presentation to advertisers was peppered with expletives. At one point, the director Spike Jonze, a longtime Vice collaborator, asked on stage if Mr. Smith had been drinking.

“My assistant tried to cut me off,” Mr. Smith replied. “I’m on buzz control.”

Now, Vice is on the verge of getting its own cable channel, which would give the company a traditional outlet for its slate of non-news programming. If all goes as planned, A&E Networks, the television group owned by Hearst and Disney, will turn over its History Channel spinoff, H2, to Vice.

The deal’s announcement was expected last week, but not all of A&E’s distribution partners — the cable and satellite TV companies that carry the network’s channels — have signed off on the change, according to a person familiar with the negotiations who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the talks were private.

A cable channel would be a further step in a transformation for Vice, from bad-boy digital upstart to mainstream media company.

Keen for the core audience of young men who come to Vice, media giants like 21st Century Fox, Time Warner and Disney all showed interest in the company last year. Vice ultimately secured $500 million in financing from A&E Networks and Technology Crossover Ventures, a Silicon Valley venture capital firm that has invested in Facebook and Netflix.

Those investments valued Vice at more than $2.5 billion. (In 2013, Fox bought a 5 percent stake for $70 million.)

Then in March, HBO announced that it had signed a multiyear deal to broadcast a daily half-hour Vice newscast. Vice already produces a weekly newsmagazine show, called “Vice,” for the network. That show will extend its run through 2018, with an increase to 35 episodes a year, from 14.

Michael Lombardo, HBO’s president for programming, said when the deal was announced that it was “certainly one of our biggest investments with hours on the air.”

Vice, based in Brooklyn, also recently signed a multiyear $100 million deal with Rogers Communications, a Canadian media conglomerate, to produce original content for TV, smartphone and desktop viewers.

Vice’s finances are private, but according to an internal document reviewed by The New York Times and verified by a person familiar with the company’s financials, the company is on track to make about $915 million in revenue this year.

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Vice showed a highlight reel of its TV series at the NewFronts last week in New York. Credit Jesse Dittmar for The New York Times

It brought in $545 million in a strong first quarter, which included portions of the new HBO deal and the Rogers deal, according to the document. More of its revenue now comes from these types of content partnerships, compared with the branded content deals that made up much of its revenue a year ago, the company said.

Mr. Smith said the company was worth at least $4 billion. If the valuation gets much higher, he said he would consider taking the company public.

“I don’t care about money; we have plenty of money,” Mr. Smith, who is Vice’s biggest shareholder, said in an interview after the presentation on Friday. “I care about strategic deals.”

In the United States, Vice Media had 35.2 million unique visitors across its sites in March, according to comScore.

The third season of Vice’s weekly HBO show has averaged 1.8 million viewers per episode, including reruns, through April 12, according to Brad Adgate, the director of research at Horizon Media. (Vice said the show attracted three million weekly viewers when repeat broadcasts, online and on-demand viewings were included.)

For years, Mr. Smith has criticized traditional TV, calling it slow and unable to draw younger viewers. But if all the deals Vice has struck are to work out, Mr. Smith may have to play more by the rules of traditional media. James Murdoch, Rupert Murdoch’s son and a member of Vice’s board, was at the company’s presentation on Friday, as were other top media executives.

“They know they need people like me to help them, but they can’t get out of their own way,” Mr. Smith said in the interview Friday. “My only real frustration is we’re used to being incredibly dynamic, and they’re not incredibly dynamic.”

With its own television channel in the United States, Vice would have something it has long coveted even as traditional media companies are looking beyond TV. Last year, Vice’s deal with Time Warner failed in part because the two companies could not agree on how much control Vice would have over a 24-hour television network.

Vice said it intended to fill its new channel with non-news programming. The company plans to have sports shows, fashion shows, food shows and the “Gaycation” travel show with the actress Ellen Page. It is also in talks with Kanye West about a show.

It remains to be seen whether Vice’s audience will watch a traditional cable channel. Still, Vice has effectively presold all of the ad spots to two of the biggest advertising agencies for the first three years, Mr. Smith said.

In the meantime, Mr. Smith is enjoying Vice’s newfound role as a potential savior of traditional media companies.

“I’m a C.E.O. of a content company,” Mr. Smith said before he caught a flight to Las Vegas for the boxing match on Saturday between Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao. “If it stops being fun, then why are you doing it?”

As Vice Moves More to TV, It Tries to Keep Brash Voice

Though Robin and Joan Rolfs owned two rare talking dolls manufactured by Thomas Edison’s phonograph company in 1890, they did not dare play the wax cylinder records tucked inside each one.

The Rolfses, longtime collectors of Edison phonographs, knew that if they turned the cranks on the dolls’ backs, the steel phonograph needle might damage or destroy the grooves of the hollow, ring-shaped cylinder. And so for years, the dolls sat side by side inside a display cabinet, bearers of a message from the dawn of sound recording that nobody could hear.

In 1890, Edison’s dolls were a flop; production lasted only six weeks. Children found them difficult to operate and more scary than cuddly. The recordings inside, which featured snippets of nursery rhymes, wore out quickly.

Yet sound historians say the cylinders were the first entertainment records ever made, and the young girls hired to recite the rhymes were the world’s first recording artists.

Year after year, the Rolfses asked experts if there might be a safe way to play the recordings. Then a government laboratory developed a method to play fragile records without touching them.

Audio

The technique relies on a microscope to create images of the grooves in exquisite detail. A computer approximates — with great accuracy — the sounds that would have been created by a needle moving through those grooves.

In 2014, the technology was made available for the first time outside the laboratory.

“The fear all along is that we don’t want to damage these records. We don’t want to put a stylus on them,” said Jerry Fabris, the curator of the Thomas Edison Historical Park in West Orange, N.J. “Now we have the technology to play them safely.”

Last month, the Historical Park posted online three never-before-heard Edison doll recordings, including the two from the Rolfses’ collection. “There are probably more out there, and we’re hoping people will now get them digitized,” Mr. Fabris said.

The technology, which is known as Irene (Image, Reconstruct, Erase Noise, Etc.), was developed by the particle physicist Carl Haber and the engineer Earl Cornell at Lawrence Berkeley. Irene extracts sound from cylinder and disk records. It can also reconstruct audio from recordings so badly damaged they were deemed unplayable.

“We are now hearing sounds from history that I did not expect to hear in my lifetime,” Mr. Fabris said.

The Rolfses said they were not sure what to expect in August when they carefully packed their two Edison doll cylinders, still attached to their motors, and drove from their home in Hortonville, Wis., to the National Document Conservation Center in Andover, Mass. The center had recently acquired Irene technology.

Audio

Cylinders carry sound in a spiral groove cut by a phonograph recording needle that vibrates up and down, creating a surface made of tiny hills and valleys. In the Irene set-up, a microscope perched above the shaft takes thousands of high-resolution images of small sections of the grooves.

Stitched together, the images provide a topographic map of the cylinder’s surface, charting changes in depth as small as one five-hundredth the thickness of a human hair. Pitch, volume and timbre are all encoded in the hills and valleys and the speed at which the record is played.

At the conservation center, the preservation specialist Mason Vander Lugt attached one of the cylinders to the end of a rotating shaft. Huddled around a computer screen, the Rolfses first saw the wiggly waveform generated by Irene. Then came the digital audio. The words were at first indistinct, but as Mr. Lugt filtered out more of the noise, the rhyme became clearer.

“That was the Eureka moment,” Mr. Rolfs said.

In 1890, a girl in Edison’s laboratory had recited:

There was a little girl,

And she had a little curl

Audio

Right in the middle of her forehead.

When she was good,

She was very, very good.

But when she was bad, she was horrid.

Recently, the conservation center turned up another surprise.

In 2010, the Woody Guthrie Foundation received 18 oversize phonograph disks from an anonymous donor. No one knew if any of the dirt-stained recordings featured Guthrie, but Tiffany Colannino, then the foundation’s archivist, had stored them unplayed until she heard about Irene.

Last fall, the center extracted audio from one of the records, labeled “Jam Session 9” and emailed the digital file to Ms. Colannino.

“I was just sitting in my dining room, and the next thing I know, I’m hearing Woody,” she said. In between solo performances of “Ladies Auxiliary,” “Jesus Christ,” and “Dead or Alive,” Guthrie tells jokes, offers some back story, and makes the audience laugh. “It is quintessential Guthrie,” Ms. Colannino said.

The Rolfses’ dolls are back in the display cabinet in Wisconsin. But with audio stored on several computers, they now have a permanent voice.

Ghostly Voices From Thomas Edison’s Dolls Can Now Be Heard

WASHINGTON — A decade after emergency trailers meant to shelter Hurricane Katrina victims instead caused burning eyes, sore throats and other more serious ailments, the Environmental Protection Agency is on the verge of regulating the culprit: formaldehyde, a chemical that can be found in commonplace things like clothes and furniture.

But an unusual assortment of players, including furniture makers, the Chinese government, Republicans from states with a large base of furniture manufacturing and even some Democrats who championed early regulatory efforts, have questioned the E.P.A. proposal. The sustained opposition has held sway, as the agency is now preparing to ease key testing requirements before it releases the landmark federal health standard.

The E.P.A.’s five-year effort to adopt this rule offers another example of how industry opposition can delay and hamper attempts by the federal government to issue regulations, even to control substances known to be harmful to human health.

Continue reading the main story
 

Document: The Formaldehyde Fight

Formaldehyde is a known carcinogen that can also cause respiratory ailments like asthma, but the potential of long-term exposure to cause cancers like myeloid leukemia is less well understood.

The E.P.A.’s decision would be the first time that the federal government has regulated formaldehyde inside most American homes.

“The stakes are high for public health,” said Tom Neltner, senior adviser for regulatory affairs at the National Center for Healthy Housing, who has closely monitored the debate over the rules. “What we can’t have here is an outcome that fails to confront the health threat we all know exists.”

The proposal would not ban formaldehyde — commonly used as an ingredient in wood glue in furniture and flooring — but it would impose rules that prevent dangerous levels of the chemical’s vapors from those products, and would set testing standards to ensure that products sold in the United States comply with those limits. The debate has sharpened in the face of growing concern about the safety of formaldehyde-treated flooring imported from Asia, especially China.

What is certain is that a lot of money is at stake: American companies sell billions of dollars’ worth of wood products each year that contain formaldehyde, and some argue that the proposed regulation would impose unfair costs and restrictions.

Determined to block the agency’s rule as proposed, these industry players have turned to the White House, members of Congress and top E.P.A. officials, pressing them to roll back the testing requirements in particular, calling them redundant and too expensive.

“There are potentially over a million manufacturing jobs that will be impacted if the proposed rule is finalized without changes,” wrote Bill Perdue, the chief lobbyist at the American Home Furnishings Alliance, a leading critic of the testing requirements in the proposed regulation, in one letter to the E.P.A.

Industry opposition helped create an odd alignment of forces working to thwart the rule. The White House moved to strike out key aspects of the proposal. Subsequent appeals for more changes were voiced by players as varied as Senator Barbara Boxer, Democrat of California, and Senator Roger Wicker, Republican of Mississippi, as well as furniture industry lobbyists.

Hurricane Katrina in 2005 helped ignite the public debate over formaldehyde, after the deadly storm destroyed or damaged hundreds of thousands of homes along the Gulf of Mexico, forcing families into temporary trailers provided by the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

The displaced storm victims quickly began reporting respiratory problems, burning eyes and other issues, and tests then confirmed high levels of formaldehyde fumes leaking into the air inside the trailers, which in many cases had been hastily constructed.

Public health advocates petitioned the E.P.A. to issue limits on formaldehyde in building materials and furniture used in homes, given that limits already existed for exposure in workplaces. But three years after the storm, only California had issued such limits.

Industry groups like the American Chemistry Council have repeatedly challenged the science linking formaldehyde to cancer, a position championed by David Vitter, the Republican senator from Louisiana, who is a major recipient of chemical industry campaign contributions, and whom environmental groups have mockingly nicknamed “Senator Formaldehyde.”

Continue reading the main story

Formaldehyde in Laminate Flooring

In laminate flooring, formaldehyde is used as a bonding agent in the fiberboard (or other composite wood) core layer and may also be used in glues that bind layers together. Concerns were raised in March when certain laminate flooring imported from China was reported to contain levels of formaldehyde far exceeding the limit permitted by California.

Typical

laminate

flooring

CLEAR FINISH LAYER

Often made of melamine resin

PATTERN LAYER

Paper printed to resemble wood,

or a thin wood veneer

GLUE

Layers may be bound using

formaldehyde-based glues

CORE LAYER

Fiberboard or other

composite, formed using

formaldehyde-based adhesives

BASE LAYER

Moisture-resistant vapor barrier

What is formaldehyde?

Formaldehyde is a common chemical used in many industrial and household products as an adhesive, bonding agent or preservative. It is classified as a volatile organic compound. The term volatile means that, at room temperature, formaldehyde will vaporize, or become a gas. Products made with formaldehyde tend to release this gas into the air. If breathed in large quantities, it may cause health problems.

WHERE IT IS COMMONLY FOUND

POTENTIAL HEALTH RISKS

Pressed-wood and composite wood products

Wallpaper and paints

Spray foam insulation used in construction

Commercial wood floor finishes

Crease-resistant fabrics

In cigarette smoke, or in the fumes from combustion of other materials, including wood, oil and gasoline.

Exposure to formaldehyde in sufficient amounts may cause eye, throat or skin irritation, allergic reactions, and respiratory problems like coughing, wheezing or asthma.

Long-term exposure to high levels has been associated with cancer in humans and laboratory animals.

Exposure to formaldehyde may affect some people more severely than others.

By 2010, public health advocates and some industry groups secured bipartisan support in Congress for legislation that ordered the E.P.A. to issue federal rules that largely mirrored California’s restrictions. At the time, concerns were rising over the growing number of lower-priced furniture imports from Asia that might include contaminated products, while also hurting sales of American-made products.

Maneuvering began almost immediately after the E.P.A. prepared draft rules to formally enact the new standards.

White House records show at least five meetings in mid-2012 with industry executives — kitchen cabinet makers, chemical manufacturers, furniture trade associations and their lobbyists, like Brock R. Landry, of the Venable law firm. These parties, along with Senator Vitter’s office, appealed to top administration officials, asking them to intervene to roll back the E.P.A. proposal.

The White House Office of Management and Budget, which reviews major federal regulations before they are adopted, apparently agreed. After the White House review, the E.P.A. “redlined” many of the estimates of the monetary benefits that would be gained by reductions in related health ailments, like asthma and fertility issues, documents reviewed by The New York Times show.

As a result, the estimated benefit of the proposed rule dropped to $48 million a year, from as much as $278 million a year. The much-reduced amount deeply weakened the agency’s justification for the sometimes costly new testing that would be required under the new rules, a federal official involved in the effort said.

“It’s a redlining blood bath,” said Lisa Heinzerling, a Georgetown University Law School professor and a former E.P.A. official, using the Washington phrase to describe when language is stricken from a proposed rule. “Almost the entire discussion of these potential benefits was excised.”

Senator Vitter’s staff was pleased.

“That’s a huge difference,” said Luke Bolar, a spokesman for Mr. Vitter, of the reduced estimated financial benefits, saying the change was “clearly highlighting more mismanagement” at the E.P.A.

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The review’s outcome galvanized opponents in the furniture industry. They then targeted a provision that mandated new testing of laminated wood, a cheaper alternative to hardwood. (The California standard on which the law was based did not require such testing.)

But E.P.A. scientists had concluded that these laminate products — millions of which are sold annually in the United States — posed a particular risk. They said that when thin layers of wood, also known as laminate or veneer, are added to furniture or flooring in the final stages of manufacturing, the resulting product can generate dangerous levels of fumes from often-used formaldehyde-based glues.

Industry executives, outraged by what they considered an unnecessary and financially burdensome level of testing, turned every lever within reach to get the requirement removed. It would be particularly onerous, they argued, for small manufacturers that would have to repeatedly interrupt their work to do expensive new testing. The E.P.A. estimated that the expanded requirements for laminate products would cost the furniture industry tens of millions of dollars annually, while the industry said that the proposed rule over all would cost its 7,000 American manufacturing facilities over $200 million each year.

“A lot of people don’t seem to appreciate what a lot of these requirements do to a small operation,” said Dick Titus, executive vice president of the Kitchen Cabinet Manufacturers Association, whose members are predominantly small businesses. “A 10-person shop, for example, just really isn’t equipped to handle that type of thing.”

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Becky Gillette wants strong regulation of formaldehyde. Credit Beth Hall for The New York Times

Big industry players also weighed in. Executives from companies including La-Z-Boy, Hooker Furniture and Ashley Furniture all flew to Washington for a series of meetings with the offices of lawmakers including House Speaker John Boehner, Republican of Ohio, and about a dozen other lawmakers, asking several of them to sign a letter prepared by the industry to press the E.P.A. to back down, according to an industry report describing the lobbying visit.

Within a matter of weeks, two letters — using nearly identical language — were sent by House and Senate lawmakers to the E.P.A. — with the industry group forwarding copies of the letters to the agency as well, and then posting them on its website.

The industry lobbyists also held their own meeting at E.P.A. headquarters, and they urged Jim Jones, who oversaw the rule-making process as the assistant administrator for the agency’s Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention, to visit a North Carolina furniture manufacturing plant. According to the trade group, Mr. Jones told them that the visit had “helped the agency shift its thinking” about the rules and how laminated products should be treated.

The resistance was particularly intense from lawmakers like Mr. Wicker of Mississippi, whose state is home to major manufacturing plants owned by Ashley Furniture Industries, the world’s largest furniture maker, and who is one of the biggest recipients in Congress of donations from the industry’s trade association. Asked if the political support played a role, a spokesman for Mr. Wicker replied: “Thousands of Mississippians depend on the furniture manufacturing industry for their livelihoods. Senator Wicker is committed to defending all Mississippians from government overreach.”

Individual companies like Ikea also intervened, as did the Chinese government, which claimed that the new rule would create a “great barrier” to the import of Chinese products because of higher costs.

Perhaps the most surprising objection came from Senator Boxer, of California, a longtime environmental advocate, whose office questioned why the E.P.A.’s rule went further than her home state’s in seeking testing on laminated products. “We did not advocate an outcome, other than safety,” her office said in a statement about why the senator raised concerns. “We said ‘Take a look to see if you have it right.’ ”

Safety advocates say that tighter restrictions — like the ones Ms. Boxer and Mr. Wicker, along with Representative Doris Matsui, a California Democrat, have questioned — are necessary, particularly for products coming from China, where items as varied as toys and Christmas lights have been found to violate American safety standards.

While Mr. Neltner, the environmental advocate who has been most involved in the review process, has been open to compromise, he has pressed the E.P.A. not to back down entirely, and to maintain a requirement that laminators verify that their products are safe.

An episode of CBS’s “60 Minutes” in March brought attention to the issue when it accused Lumber Liquidators, the discount flooring retailer, of selling laminate products with dangerous levels of formaldehyde. The company has disputed the show’s findings and test methods, maintaining that its products are safe.

“People think that just because Congress passed the legislation five years ago, the problem has been fixed,” said Becky Gillette, who then lived in coastal Mississippi, in the area hit by Hurricane Katrina, and was among the first to notice a pattern of complaints from people living in the trailers. “Real people’s faces and names come up in front of me when I think of the thousands of people who could get sick if this rule is not done right.”

An aide to Ms. Matsui rejected any suggestion that she was bending to industry pressure.

“From the beginning the public health has been our No. 1 concern,” said Kyle J. Victor, an aide to Ms. Matsui.

But further changes to the rule are likely, agency officials concede, as they say they are searching for a way to reduce the cost of complying with any final rule while maintaining public health goals. The question is just how radically the agency will revamp the testing requirement for laminated products — if it keeps it at all.

“It’s not a secret to anybody that is the most challenging issue,” said Mr. Jones, the E.P.A. official overseeing the process, adding that the health consequences from formaldehyde are real. “We have to reduce those exposures so that people can live healthy lives and not have to worry about being in their homes.”

The Uphill Battle to Better Regulate Formaldehyde
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