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Archive for Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Kansas site top recommendation for NBAF site

It looks like Kansas will be home to a new $450 million agro- and bio-defense facility.

December 3, 2008, 10:10 a.m. Updated December 3, 2008, 3:03 p.m.

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Timeline

• In 2005, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security proposes construction and operation of the National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility to increase animal disease research capabilities.

• January 2006 — DHS solicits NBAF site proposals and receives 29 applicants.

• December 2006 — DHS whittles down the number of potential sites to 18, including Manhattan and Leavenworth.

• Feb. 2007 — U.S. Sen. Pat Roberts, R-Kan., addresses joint session of Legislature urging backing of NBAF effort.

• July 2007 — Manhattan is among the six finalists, but Leavenworth is cut.

• March 2008 — Gov. Kathleen Sebelius signs law authorizing $105 million in bonds for NBAF project.

• December 2008 — DHS recommends Manhattan site.

— A $450 million federal lab dedicated to protecting the United States from disease outbreaks and bioterrorist attacks should be built in Manhattan, Kan., according to the Department of Homeland Security.

The release of the draft report Wednesday was hailed by Kansas officials who have been waging an intense competition with other states to win what is called the National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility or NBAF.

“Manhattan, Kansas State University and the state of Kansas have proven that we are the nation’s leaders in plant and animal research and industry, and I am proud of the role Kansas will continue to play in agriculture security and innovation,” said U.S. Sen. Pat Roberts, R-Kan., who started the effort to land the facility. “This NBAF will protect and build the state’s agriculture economy for decades to come and further expand our national leadership in the biosciences.”

U.S. Rep. Jerry Moran, R-Hays, described the selection by DHS as “an early Christmas gift” for Kansas.

But the deal isn’t done yet.

The choice won’t become final until after a 30-day period for comments on the decision, which could face legal challenges from losing states. Other finalist sites were Flora, Miss.; Athens, Ga.; Butner, N.C.; and San Antonio.

Texas officials already are fuming.

“We’re going to be right up in their face,” York Duncan, president of Texas Research Park, which was one of the finalists, told the San Antonio Express-News.

“We have decided to pull all the stops out, and we’re going to exploit every opportunity to steer this to San Antonio,” he said.

The new lab would replace an aging facility on Plum Island, N.Y.

Under the DHS proposal, the lab would be used primarily to protect against animal diseases by conducting research on deadly pathogens, such as foot and mouth disease, Rift Valley fever and Hendra and Nipah viruses.

Construction, which would take about four years, could start in 2010.

The facility is expected to require 1,500 construction jobs. Once completed, it is expected the facility would employ 300 people, with an annual payroll of $25 million to $30 million.

In its Environmental Impact Statement, DHS said the Manhattan, Kan., site was preferred because of many factors, including cost.

The site’s strengths included:

• Proximity to KSU and existing research capabilities.

• Workforce “relevant to the NBAF mission” because of the link to the KSU College of Veterinary Medicine, College of Agriculture and Bioscience Research Institute.

• Support of local, state and federal officials.

• “In-kind” contributions from the state. The Kansas Legislature and Gov. Kathleen Sebelius approved a $105 million bond package to develop the project.

• Environmental impacts fell in the “no impacts to minor impacts” category.

• Threat of pathogen release were comparable to other proposed sites.

The bottom line, according to the report: “The Manhattan campus was among the least expensive to construct and had the lowest planned operation costs of all the site alternatives.”

KU Chancellor Robert Hemenway, who also served on the task force that worked on landing NBAF, said he was “thrilled” by the news that it was going to Kansas State University.

“The National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility will be a major economic asset to our state and will boost bioscience research throughout the region, including at KU,” he said.

House Speaker Melvin Neufeld, R-Ingalls, said the selection of Kansas reflects the state’s position as a leader in animal science, and he said the project will help the economy.

“It’s clear we’re going to need all the help we can get, and not only will this boost the economy of that region, but really the entire state. There’s a number of important industries involved in this project and each of them are going to see major benefits,” he said.

Comments

gccs14r 5 years, 4 months ago

"Everytime a Wildcat in Manhattan flushes the toliet, there is a jayhawk in Lawrence drinking that water!!!"Who says they have indoor plumbing?

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BaneMaler 5 years, 4 months ago

Who's going to lose their homes over this deal? I might not have a problem with the lab if I knew that Eminent Domain wasn't going to be used willy nilly.

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Mike George 5 years, 4 months ago

I think log just called me a wacko - speaking of "stupid and flippant comments"........

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bobberboy 5 years, 4 months ago

Lets see : KU beats K-State in Football and Basketball but when it comes to providing high paying jobs for highly skilled college educated people K-State wins hands down.K-State 120KU 0Jeezz what happened ?

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logrithmic 5 years, 4 months ago

When you get ready to make a point douchebag, I'm listening. Until then, your stupid and flippant comments have as much relevance to me as the turd I flushed down the jon this morning. Come to think of it, it resembled a black helicopter....

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madmike 5 years, 4 months ago

Log, are you married to notnowdear? You both think alike. both conspiracy theorist wearing tin foil hats. Remember, I am in the black chopper abouve your houses!

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OldEnuf2BYurDad 5 years, 4 months ago

"Threat of pathogen release were comparable to other proposed sites."There is no suggestion here that "comparable" means "low".Our state economy is so screwed, I'd agree to a coal gasification plant next to the governor's mansion.

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logrithmic 5 years, 4 months ago

The rightwing loves spending money on weapons labs... always have. While they pray to Jesus and send out Christmas cards with the word "peace," they see nothing odd or hypocritical about their embrace of biological weapons - weapons that have been used by elements of the military against the U.S. Congress and the American people - the anthrax attacks of 2001.Of course to state that elements of the military were involved in these attacks is somehow considered "conspiracy," when even the FBI has pinned the entire anthrax terrorist attack on a sole U.S. military scientist employed at a biological weapons lab in Maryland. These and other concerns about safety and accidents should be of utmost importance in considering these labs. Don't pay attention to the ultra-safeguards some of those on these posts suggest. Mistakes do happen. And they can have devastating results.Of course, a leak doesn't have to come from a mistake. It can also come from a terror attack or sabotage from the inside. No matter how the wackos want to pretend this plant is not a threat, it is.You've paid for it too... Some $500 million in Kansas taxes will be used to support the building of this plant. The plant itself is expected to cost another $5 billion - assigned to all taxpayers. When you add these numbers up and divide it by the 300 or so jobs provided, well, it isn't hard to see it's a pretty bad deal - especially at a time when the country is bailing out RepubLICKlan Scam Streeters and Bankers and their CEOs $100 million salaries.Good luck to one and all....

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tunahelper 5 years, 4 months ago

Bill Snyder is a God in Manhattan.

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tunahelper 5 years, 4 months ago

Everytime a Wildcat in Manhattan flushes the toliet, there is a jayhawk in Lawrence drinking that water!!!

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hornhunter 5 years, 4 months ago

No Multi, This lab will house its own power plant so that they know that they will have their own reliable power, 24/7. Even when the wind doesn't blow and queen Kathy does. The queen needs to remember she and her prince B. shut down any new CO2 production in this state made from power producers.

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kansasdaughter 5 years, 4 months ago

Manhattan is the recommendation of the Department of Homeland Security to be the site of a $451 million lab designed to study diseases that are transmittable between animals and humans.The office of Sen. Pat Roberts confirmed the selection this morning following receipt of the final Environmental Impact Study. ''It is confirmed,'' said Sarah Little, Roberts' press secretary.DHS officials withheld a formal announcement pending public release of the final EIS. That release is expected to take place Friday.http://www.themercury.com/News/article.aspx?articleId=0bcf414824a54606aef4444e16faeb35

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topekan7 5 years, 4 months ago

and will they be naming the lab "The Bill Synder Family Bio-Agri Defense Facility"?

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Multidisciplinary 5 years, 4 months ago

Let me guess. It will require so much elec., that the new coal plants MUST be approved.Sie power companieez will shtop atzz notzing!

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notnowdear 5 years, 4 months ago

Yep, it appears that it will indeed be housed in Kansas, right next to an al qaeda camp. Go Roberts, you did your dubious and shadey job so well for the war-mongers of this country. I am sure your fale us will rise on this one.

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max1 5 years, 4 months ago

http://www2.ljworld.com/news/2008/dec..."These buildings are the most sophisticated ever built and the new NBAF will have even more levels of redundancy and protection" -hawkbuilderhttp://www.labdesignnews.com/LaboratoryDesign/LD0509FEAT_1.aspWorking with danger Since BSL-4 labs are expensive to build and operate, and because there are relatively few researchers that study at the BSL-4 level, these facilities are rare. As mentioned earlier, only a few are currently functional in the United States.Because of the rigorous requirements for both physical and environmental containment, BSL-4 lab design and construction are extremely specialized. Because only a few of these labs exist in the world, only a few architectural firms have ever designed a BSL-4 lab. The latest BSL-4 lab to become operational, opening its doors in 2003, was designed for the Univ. of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston by the integrated architecture and planning firm Perkins+Will.The U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security (DHS) recently selected our firm to design the National Biodefense Analysis and Countermeasures Center (NBACC) facility at Fort Detrick, Frederick, Md.http://www.baltimorechronicle.com/2006/092806KISSIN-OCHS.shtmlDuring a two-week period in April four years ago, officials at the Army's lead biodefense laboratory at Fort Detrick discovered anthrax spores had escaped carefully guarded suites into the building's unprotected areas.Employees at usamriid, the Army's leading biodefense laboratory, filed 161 biological defense mishap reports between April 1, 2002 and Dec. 1, 2005.Since Fort Detrick's stated mission is to anticipate biological threats, Fort Detrick plans to genetically modify diseases on which to test vaccines.http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg19826583.000-footandmouth-lab-should-stay-on-island.htmlIf you want to build the world's largest laboratory for studying foot-and-mouth disease, put it on an island. That's the latest advice to the US government, which is keen to site a “National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility” on one of five potential sites on the mainland.The GAO [U.S. Government Accountability Office] says mainland sites are too risky because a virus could escape and easily spread to nearby farms. That happened last year when foot-and-mouth virus escaped from a faulty pipe at a high-containment lab at the Institute for Animal Health in Pirbright, UK, causing outbreaks at eight neighboring farms. GAO cites this as “the best evidence in favor of an island location”.

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Mike George 5 years, 4 months ago

Regarding staff04's comment about the CDC BSL-4 labs that are mothballed, the missing element is that the CDC labs are not set up at all for animal housing and containment, which is a necessary part of the ongoing research and testing that will be done. Both the BRI and the new USDA lab at Ames, IA, are the newest type to house research animal populations in complete safety and security. In addition, the KSU facility has a plant pathology and research section.

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staff04 5 years, 4 months ago

They should save a few bucks and use the BSL-4 labs that are already constructed but not in use due to funding shortages at the CDC in Atlanta...

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Deja Coffin 5 years, 4 months ago

Wow, talk about airhead. I read the title of this article and was like, "we're going to have the NBA finals in Kansas! Awesome!" Yeah, I'll just insert the foot now.

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max1 5 years, 4 months ago

Oddly enough, it looks like the June tornado went right through the proposed 48 acre bio-lab site southeast of the intersection of Kimball Avenue and Denison Avenue.For some reason, the link I posted for the map worked for me the first time, but it didn't when I clicked on the LJW link. This following link should work. You can drag the scroll bar down on the left to zoom out, so as to compare these maps.Kimball Avenue and Denison Avenuehttp://maps.google.com/maps?hl=en&amp... pathhttp://img66.imageshack.us/img66/8623/manhattan2zi7.jpg

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Mike George 5 years, 4 months ago

Let me offer some knowledge to help the discussion - I was the PM for the Construction Manager for the KSU BRI project, so have complete knowledge of that facility and what mostly is planned for the NBAF because we are competing for that project. Much of the details of the BRI are restricted because of security concerns, but let me assure you that the structure of the containment labs in the facility is built to withstand the direct hit of a Force 5 tornado, so that isn't an issue. All of the effluent from the facility is triple treated before it is sent to the Manhattan system, and their sewage engineers have already tested and verified the purity. There are four levels of electrical redundancy in the power systems, and three levels of redundancy in the exhaust air systems, which double-HEPA filters all the leaving air. Nothing can break down and "spill" to the outside - if anything fails thru three or four levels of redundancy, it simply stays contained in the building. These buildings are the most sophisticated ever built and the new NBAF will have even more levels of redundancy and protection, if you can imagine that. Frankly, these buildings pose no threat to Kansas population, livestock and plants, and comparing them to the existing facility on Plum Island that was built in 1954 is not a valid exercise. Don't lose sleep about these projects - they are a 100% benefit to the state, our economy and the labor market. For the BRI project, we utilized 83% Kansas labor and subcontractors. Some items like the submarine doors just are only made by one or two vendors out of state. Hope this helps.

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Joe Hyde 5 years, 4 months ago

Should this lab get approved and built, and then one day something goes horribly wrong and those lethal pathogens escape into the environment, the cruel irony will be that the nation's stongest region for beef and bison production will be economically destroyed by the very laboratory intended to protect it.

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classclown 5 years, 4 months ago

logicsound04 (Anonymous) says…“I still say New York will come out on top, because this is the way the Federal Government typically operates.” -BigotPrune––––––—I missed the part where NY was even in the running to get this facility.You are on quite an 0-fer streak lately smart guy=============================Actually, if I remember it correctly, after they announced the finalist locations, they decided to add the original location to the list.

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max1 5 years, 4 months ago

"The original lab was four miles offshore, downwind of the continental U.S. for a reason. We should keep it there." -gccs14rThe site for the bio-lab would be immediately adjacent to K-State's Biosecurity Research Institute. It covers 48.4 acres southeast of the intersection of Kimball Avenue and Denison Avenue.Path of the June 2008 Manhattan tornado:http://img66.imageshack.us/img66/8623/manhattan2zi7.jpgDennison and Kimball Avenues:http://maps.google.com/maps?hl=en&amp..., Kansas, June 12, 2008 - The Riley County Emergency Manager is reporting significant damage to businesses and the Kansas State University campus.On campus, students report the roofs blown off at Weber and Fiedler Halls. Ward Hall, home to a nuclear reactor, has also been damaged.

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logicsound04 5 years, 4 months ago

"I still say New York will come out on top, because this is the way the Federal Government typically operates." -BigotPrune--------------------I missed the part where NY was even in the running to get this facility.You are on quite an 0-fer streak lately smart guy.

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madmike 5 years, 4 months ago

As long as it is upwind of Larryville, it could only improve the gene pool. Besides, look at Merrill, bozo and Logrithmic. Already mutants!

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gccs14r 5 years, 4 months ago

The original lab was four miles offshore, downwind of the continental U.S. for a reason. We should keep it there. Putting it here is an incredibly bad idea.

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bobberboy 5 years, 4 months ago

Wallythewalrus - go to college, major in molecular biology, make real good grades and then apply for a job. Then as usual maybe you'll be luckty to make $30,000 a year. Science jobs are known primarily for one thing - low pay. Better off working at Goodyear.

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madmike 5 years, 4 months ago

I love the smell of mycotoxins in the morning, it smells like...victory!

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classclown 5 years, 4 months ago

autie (Anonymous) says…sounds great…just make sure those alfalfa boys don't dump nothin bad down the drain cleanin up at night…nothin like a little zombie juice in the Kaw.=====================================I'm sure that's why they want K State people doing it rather than KU. So that sort of thing doesn't happen.http://www2.ljworld.com/news/2008/aug...

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max1 5 years, 4 months ago

http://www.bu.edu/sjmag/scimag2005/features/drugsinwater.htmWhat makes pharmaceutical pollution so worrisome is that the usual safeguards that protect us from bacteria and toxins, fail to rid sewage of these chemicals. Most treatment plants filter and chlorinate sewage to remove disease-causing microbes and excess organic matter, but do nothing to clean the water of pharmaceuticals, which slip right through traditional treatment processes.http://www.kyrc.org/webnewspro/118157407296415.shtmlThe EIS should include an analysis of the existing local wastewater and sewer systems to determine whether these systems are adequate to address any additional flow created by the facility . . . The EIS should examine how contaminated wastewater will be managed, treated and stored at the facility, including any procedures that will be implemented to prevent contaminants from wastewater or animal waste from entering into the sewer system, storm water, surface water, and groundwater. The ability of the of the local sewer system to manage wastewater from the facility, including monitoring such waste and responding to spills and contamination, should also be addressed.http://www.signonsandiego.com/news/science/20080309-2100-pharmawater-metros-byresults.htmlAt least one pharmaceutical was detected in tests of treated drinking water supplies for 24 major metropolitan areas, according to an Associated Press survey of 62 major water providers and data obtained from independent researchers.Only 28 tested drinking water. Three of those said results were negative

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max1 5 years, 4 months ago

"Don't come cryin' to me when your cows and crops die!" -rodentgirl16It ain't just farm animals that are at risk, but I'm sure Manhattan's sewer system will keep everyone downstream safe.NBAF, proposed site at Manhattan, Kansas, at Kansas State University; BSL-4 and BSL-3 labshttp://www2.ljworld.com/news/2007/aug/30/biolab_could_stay_ny/As proposed, NBAF would become the nation’s first integrated animal and plant research center with the capability to deal with human pathogens, according to DHS.http://www.canlyme.com/germlab2005.htmlTo be designated Biosafety Level 4 - the highest level of security - it will develop drugs and vaccines to protect not only against bioterror agents but also such natural emerging diseases as SARS and West Nile virus, he said. http://www.niaid.nih.gov/factsheets/detrick_qa.htmBSL-4 agents: Are associated with human disease and cause illness by spreading through the air (aerosol) or have an unknown cause of transmission -- diseases that are usually life-threateninghttp://www.standupuga.org/content/biodefenseBio-Safety Level 4 Biodefense Labs: High-containment facilities where research is conducted on lethal pathogens for which there is no known cure . . . The report revealed that Merial, the world's largest animal pharmaceutical company, producing thousands of liters of live virus for vaccinations, failed to sterilize effluent fully before discharging it into the drains.

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tolawdjk 5 years, 4 months ago

Jokes of hoof and mouth and K-State cheerleaders come to mind.But seriously, huge score here for the state, both in terms of dollars and cents and furthering scientific research.

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autie 5 years, 4 months ago

sounds great...just make sure those alfalfa boys don't dump nothin bad down the drain cleanin up at night...nothin like a little zombie juice in the Kaw.

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63BC 5 years, 4 months ago

Base Realignment and Closure---huge win for KansasBoeing Tanker Contract---re bid to give Kansas a fair shakeNBAF---looks like it's coming to Kansas.How 'bout some tips of the cap to our Congressional Delegation?They're getting it done.

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madmike 5 years, 4 months ago

I was once on a "red cell" that had free reign to throw chem/bio scenarios at the operations people in USAREUR. We had an appropriate header and footer below the secret classification which read "UTABAG". The 21st SUPCOM commander asked what it was, and I told him; Up Their @ss With Bugs and Gas! He laughed so hard he shot coffee through his nose.

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justaverage 5 years, 4 months ago

How is the U.S. Government paying for this, borrowed money from China?

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nobody1793 5 years, 4 months ago

"30 million for 300 people? Where do I sign up for a 100,000 a year job?"It's the little booth just past where they hand out the Microbiology PhD diplomas...

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Shane Garrett 5 years, 4 months ago

30 million for 300 people? Where do I sign up for a 100,000 a year job?

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jayhawklawrence 5 years, 4 months ago

This is great news at a time when we needed some.

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logrithmic 5 years, 4 months ago

This lab is wholly different from anything in the State right now. Get a clue dude....

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macon47 5 years, 4 months ago

I HOPE THEY STUDY CHICKEN DISEASES

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hujiko 5 years, 4 months ago

If you are so worried, then why are you living in Lawrence? Look at KU's research facility before you worry about such a minimal risk ever occurring, this is a good thing to come to Kansas in light of the slump we are in.

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logrithmic 5 years, 4 months ago

This is extremely upsetting. Because the threat has been fictionalized in various movies, most recently Will Smith's "Legend," don't come crying to the feds when the inevitable happens. For those with open minds who hold our lives more dearly than those in the State Capitol and their business backers and those on this forum that want to suggest that "jobs" matters more than life itself, I post the following links. They describe the threat from this type of facility far better than I:http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/21096974/http://articles.latimes.com/2007/oct/03/science/sci-biodefense3On top of that, this paper reported the eye-popping results of a potential leak from a plant such as this on the State of Kansas, with our dear jolly Frankenstein senator Roberts acting as the president:http://www2.ljworld.com/news/2008/apr/12/bush_administration_acknowledges_disease_lab_accid/From link: "A simulated outbreak of the disease in 2002 - part of an earlier U.S. government exercise called "Crimson Sky" - ended with fictional riots in the streets after the simulation's National Guardsmen were ordered to kill tens of millions of farm animals, so many that troops ran out of bullets. In the exercise, the government said it would have been forced to dig a ditch in Kansas 25 miles long to bury carcasses. In the simulation, protests broke out in some cities amid food shortages."'It was a mess,' said Sen. Pat Roberts, R-Kan., who portrayed the president in that 2002 exercise."'Devastating results happened; utter chaos - loss of markets, the herds had to be destroyed, people panicked in urban areas,' Roberts said during a 2005 Senate hearing."Enjoy the fruits of your labor....

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Larry_The_Moocher 5 years, 4 months ago

News Flash: KState football team wins National Championship with genetically mutated offensive line.

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rodentgirl16 5 years, 4 months ago

jaywalker,I'm not really worried, but it's always a good idea to be cautious. (Remember the ebola incident in Maryland? Not rampant by any means, but stuff happens.) This is, however, wonderful employment news for many scientists I know that don't wish to work in state government.

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ralphralph 5 years, 4 months ago

Not gonna happen.A groundbreaking with Obama, Pelosi, and ... Brownback?Not gonna happen.

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jaywalker 5 years, 4 months ago

Relax, rodentgirl. Atlanta never seems to have a problem with rampant virus 'escapes' from the CDC. It's nothing but a good thing.

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KansasVoter 5 years, 4 months ago

Hopefully this is true, because our state NEEDS some good employment news.

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rodentgirl16 5 years, 4 months ago

Ha! You're right. Maybe it will even be an improvement for them.

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nobody1793 5 years, 4 months ago

"...provided nothing goes wrong"So if K-Staters turn into flesh-eating zombies, will we even notice?Unnnnnhhh...braaiiinnnss....

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SpeedRacer 5 years, 4 months ago

"The new lab would replace an aging facility on Plum Island, N.Y."In the novel The Silence of the Lambs, Clarice Starling promises Hannibal Lecter an annual trip to Plum Island. He replies, "Anthrax Island?"

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persevering_gal 5 years, 4 months ago

gdsacco - lol, I was thinking the same thing.

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rodentgirl16 5 years, 4 months ago

Don't come cryin' to me when your cows and crops die! Seriously though, speaking as a scientist, I think it will be a really good thing from an employment and economic point of view, provided nothing goes wrong

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Multidisciplinary 5 years, 4 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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BigPrune 5 years, 4 months ago

I'll believe it when I see it. I still say New York will come out on top, because this is the way the Federal Government typically operates.

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geniusmannumber1 5 years, 4 months ago

Wait -- where are the fearmongers?

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gdsacco 5 years, 4 months ago

Wait, what is the NBAF, is that like the WNBA?

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