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DOE Scraps Plans for Neutrino Experiment in Mine

first_imgThe U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) is putting the brakes on the development of a gigantic experiment seen as the flagship project for the next decade at the country’s sole particle physics laboratory. At a projected $1.5 billion, the Long-Baseline Neutrino Experiment (LBNE) at the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory (Fermilab) in Batavia, Illinois, is not affordable, says William Brinkman, director of DOE’s Office of Science. So this week he asked physicists to come up with a cheaper way to do the same science. The current plan for LBNE is to build a gigantic particle detector in the abandoned Homestake gold mine in South Dakota. The detector would contain tens of thousands of tons of frigid liquid argon and would snare elusive subatomic particles called neutrinos fired through Earth from Fermilab 1300 kilometers away. The experiment would search for an asymmetry between neutrinos and antineutrinos, called CP violation, which could shed light on why the burgeoning universe developed so much matter and so little antimatter. 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Brinkman did not rule out building some type of neutrino detector in Homestake, however. In fact, in a 19 March letter to Fermilab Director Pier Oddone, Brinkman asked Fermilab researchers to come up with alternative plans that might accomplish the same science in more manageable steps. “In order to advance this activity on a sustainable path, I would like Fermilab to lead the development of an affordable and phased approach that will enable important science results at each phase,” Brinkman explained. The slowdown of LBNE is the latest twist in the long saga to build an underground lab in Homestake. For years, scientists had hoped that the National Science Foundation (NSF) would be willing to spend up to $875 million to build a multipurpose lab. That would have included $100 million or more for two smaller experiments to be located there—one to search for particles of the mysterious dark matter whose gravity holds the galaxy together and another to search for a type of radioactive decay that would prove that neutrinos are their own antiparticles. Those efforts would have been preceded by “demo” projects. The lab would have also housed DOE’s LBNE. But those plans fell apart in December 2010, when the National Science Board, which sets policy for NSF, declined to continue design work for the lab. NSF’s decision left DOE with the monumentally expensive task of developing Homestake. Many physicists assumed that DOE would forge ahead with only LBNE, which is critical to Fermilab’s future, and let the dark-matter and radioactive decay experiments fall by the wayside. Building only the two smaller experiments in Homestake would make little sense, physicists have said, because the mine itself costs tens of millions of dollars a year to operate. (Merely pumping water out of the mine costs $1 million per month.) Brinkman says DOE is now considering taking the opposite tack and moving ahead with the smaller experiments first. “[W]e are going to keep the mine open and do the demo experiments on dark matter and neutrinoless double beta decay and continue to research how else we can move forward on determining how to measure the CP-violating phases of the neutrinos,” Brinkman says. The stakes are very high for Fermilab, whose plans for the next decade revolve around LBNE. Physicists say they are willing to work with DOE officials to put the neutrino experiment on a more achievable budget and schedule. “I can tell you that we are having conversations on how to stretch out the project to make it more manageable financially,” says Milind Diwan, a physicist at DOE’s Brookhaven National Laboratory in Upton, New York, and co-spokesperson for the LBNE collaboration. The project will undergo a review next week at Fermilab, Diwan says, at which point the options may become clearer.last_img read more

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2018 Winter Olympics: Russian team in shock over doping scandal

first_imgRussian athletes and sports officials voiced disbelief on Monday that one of their Winter Games medallists was being investigated for suspected doping, a scandal that could imperil Russia’s efforts to regain full Olympic status.Alexander Krushelnitsky, who competes in curling, one of the Games’ least physically taxing sports, is suspected of testing positive for meldonium, a banned substance that increases blood flow and improves exercise capacity.”It’s stupid, but Alexander is not stupid, so I don’t believe it,” Russian women’s curling coach Sergei Belanov said.He echoed a general bewilderment among curling athletes who could not fathom why anyone would use drugs that aid endurance in a sport that is a kind of chess on ice, needing steady hands and concentration rather than physical fitness.Krushelnitsky, who won bronze with his wife Anastasia Bryzgalova in mixed-doubles curling in Pyeongchang, has not responded to a request for comment.The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) has launched a doping procedure against him, but no hearing date has been fixed.Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on a conference call in Moscow that it was too early to draw conclusions about the ongoing probe.Russian delegation spokesman Konstantin Vybornov told Reuters that Krushelnitsky had surrendered his Games accreditation and left the Olympic village while awaiting the result of a second sample later on Monday.The suspected doping violation has come at a delicate time for Russia which is trying to draw a line under years of drug-cheating scandals and is competing at Pyeongchang as neutral athletes, unable to use their own flag or national symbols.advertisement”We were all shocked when we found out yesterday. Of course we very much hope it was some kind of mistake,” Russian curler Viktoria Moiseeva told reporters, adding that the team believed Krushelnitsky was innocent.”With us it’s not faster, higher, stronger; it’s about being more accurate. I can’t imagine what kind of drugs you could use in curling … so it’s very hard to believe.”FLAG BANRussia has been accused of running a state-backed, systematic doping programme for years, an allegation Moscow denies. As a result, its athletes are competing at Pyeongchang as neutral “Olympic Athletes from Russia” (OAR).Russia’s curling federation told Reuters on Monday it had launched an internal investigation of the doping case.”The federation is now creating an emergency commission in which all information will be investigated and verified. We know that our athlete is not guilty,” federation president Dmitry Svishchev said.He had earlier said that Russian curlers were tested on Jan. 22 before arriving in South Korea and the tests were negative.Moiseeva said it would be dreadful if the case hurt Russia’s chances of regaining full Olympic status for future Games.”It’s a catastrophe, if it’s not just one Olympics but others too – it will throw sport in our country into turmoil. It’s awful just to think about, to be honest.”The Russians had been hoping that a clean record at Pyeongchang would persuade the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to allow them to march at the closing ceremony on Feb. 25 with the Russian flag and in national uniform.The IOC said on Monday that any doping violation would be decided by CAS and that a decision would come very quickly after analysis of a B sample.If confirmed, the violation would be considered by the IOC’s OAR Implementation panel, the body in charge of monitoring the OAR team’s behaviour at the Games.”REALLY SAD””I hope it’s not true … for the sport of curling,” said Norwegian skipper Thomas Ulsrud, whose team would stand to pick up the bronze if the doping result is confirmed.”If it’s true I feel really sad for the Norwegian team who worked really hard and ended up in fourth place and just left for Norway and they aren’t even here.”The World Anti-Doping Agency banned meldonium with effect from January 2016, deeming it performance-enhancing because it enabled users to carry more oxygen to muscle tissue, something of benefit to endurance athletes in particular.Former tennis world number one Maria Sharapova of Russia was barred from competition for 15 months after testing positive. In total, more than 170 athletes, including over 40 Russians, have tested positive for the drug since it was banned.(With Reuters inputs)last_img read more

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IndusInd Bank invokes 6 cr pledged shares of Jaypee Infratech

first_imgNew Delhi, Mar 5 (PTI) IndusInd Bank has invoked 6 crore pledged shares, which make up about 4.32 per cent stake, of the crisis-hit Jaypee Infratech. These shares were held by Jaypee Infratechs promoter Jaiprakash Associates, which is the flagship company of debt-ridden Jaypee group. The group is facing protest from home buyers for significant delays in completing of housing projects in Noida. In a regulatory filing, Jaiprakash Associates informed that “IndusInd Bank Ltd has transferred in its name 6 crore shares of Jaypee Infratech Ltd held by the company which stood pledged in their favour”. Jaiprakash Associates had 89.5 crore shares, about 64.44 per cent stake, in Jaypee Infratech as on December 31, 2017. Of the total shares held by it, 92.55 per cent shares were pledged. Jaypee Infratech has been taken over by a NCLT-appointed Insolvency Resolution Professional (IRP) for recovery of bad loans.Last year, the NCLT had admitted the application by an IDBI Bank-led consortium seeking resolution for Jaypee Infratech under the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code.Moving ahead with the process, IRP Anuj Jain had on October 27 issued a public notice seeking applications from entities with regard to resolution of JIL. Several players have submitted expression of interest (EOI). The resolution plan needs to be approved by the creditors and the NCLT.Jaypee Infratech, which is into road construction and real estate business, has constructed the Yamuna Expressway, connecting Delhi and Agra.Jaiprakash Associates, a diversified infrastructure company engaged in engineering, construction and real estate development, cement manufacturing, hospitality and sports management, is selling its assets to repay debt. PTI MJH SAadvertisementlast_img read more

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Dispatches from Rio+20: Tackling Complex, Global Problems in a Beautiful City

first_imgAfter three hours, the picture was becoming pretty blurry. Everyone had good intentions, but it was hard to coalesce around a unified vision.Toward the end, Manish raised his hand to provide some closing thoughts. He spoke eloquently about the challenge before us. As he explained, the Rio negotiations are not headed in a positive direction. Despite the scale of the issues, the emerging text appears to be weakened in key areas, potentially even moving backward from previous conferences, such as Johannesburg in 2002 and the Rio “Earth Summit” in 1992.My ears really perked up as Manish described how the blame rests partly within the mainstream environmental movement. It’s clear that in recent years, environmental groups and their supporters have bolstered their case based on scientific understanding and economics. However, we’ve recently fallen short when it comes to pushing for action based on rights, fairness, and equity. Looking at other recent popular movements – like the Arab Spring and Occupy Wall St. – it’s clear that the environmental movement could do more to tap into people’s underlying passion that can, in turn, garner the attention of public officials. Without such pressure, it’s hard to imagine political leaders taking the urgent action on sustainability that we need today.A Time for ActionThis perspective resonates here at Rio+20. Despite the impressive set-up, there continues to be a yawning disconnect between the urgency of the challenges we face and the urgency for action.As we enter the second – and final – week at Rio, we will need world leaders to step up with more ambitious commitments along with concrete solutions. I’m hopeful that the side events, informal meetings, and networking together can produce some positive results, along with fresh thinking and a renewed energy.As heads of state prepare to arrive in Rio, they need to realize that the battles should not be focused inside the negotiating rooms. The battles should address how to shake off the clutches of the vested interests as we enhance environment protection and find a path forward for sustainable economic development. They should come here to make sure that people and the planet can live together. That’s what they should be fighting for.There’s no doubt that this summit won’t solve everything. But there’s still a real opportunity to make sure Rio+20 will be remembered for more than just the pretty scenery. A Split ConferenceTo a large extent, the conference is split into two parts: negotiations around the formal text, which will become the official outcome document for the summit, and the informal sessions. In the former, negotiators are wrangling over the words that will hopefully culminate in a meaningful global agreement on sustainability. In the informal sessions, groups and individuals are meeting to discuss the issues of the day– and will hopefully come up with ideas that will help us make headway on the big environmental challenges, like climate change, water scarcity, and deforestation, among many others.WRI is quite active on both fronts. Many of my colleagues are pushing to strengthen the language in the official outcome document. Others are leading or participating in events, working with leaders in business, government, and civil society to identify opportunities or come up with new strategies. In total, WRI experts are organizing or presenting in more than 25 events.Sustainable Development DialoguesOn Saturday, we participated in the Sustainable Development Dialogue on Fighting Poverty. Manish Bapna, WRI’s interim president, participated, along with representatives from nine other organizations. It was a diverse panel ranging from elite academics to indigenous advocates. Perhaps not surprisingly, the dialogue itself was equally broad: the speakers discussed 10 ideas about how to advance sustainability efforts to fight poverty and promote economic development.WRI’s Interim President, Manish Bapna, at the Sustainable Development Dialogues event. Photo credit: Michael Oko, WRI I’ve been to many great cities around the world, but none surpass Rio’s stunning setting. The city sits along the coast, where ocean waves splash up on wide, white sand beaches. Across the way, mountain peaks line Rio’s winding roads. It’s winter here, though it sure doesn’t feel like it. Temperatures are in the mid-70s, with a cool breeze in the evenings. Not a bad place to spend a few days.In some ways, this beautiful setting could make you forget about the environmental challenges we face, which is, after all, the reason I’m here. This week, some 50,000 people are expected to gather in Rio to advance solutions around sustainability. That sounds like a good idea, but, like many others, I’m struggling to figure out what exactly it means.last_img read more

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Mohammad Shahzad suspended for an indefinite period by Afghanistan Cricket Board

first_imgAfghanistan Cricket Board on Saturday suspended wicketkeeper-batsman Mohammad Shahzad’s contract due to breach of ACB’s Code of Conduct.Mohammad Shahzad, according to an ACB release, did not adhere to the cricket board’s policy of seeking its permission before travelling out ot the country. It is not the first time Shahzad has acted against the policy as he was found to be in breach of ACB’s Code of Conduct when he played in a local Peshawar tournament in 2018.ACB also said Mohammad Shahzad failed to attend meetings with the ACB Discipline Committee in relation to disciplinary matters during World Cup 2019. Notably, Shahzad was dropped from Afghanistan’s World Cup squad after their first 2 matches in the quadrennial tournament in England after he was declared unfit.Shahzad said he was wrongly declared unfit and even revealed that he wanted to quit cricket.”As per ACB’s policies, any player travelling out of the country is required to seek the permission of ACB. Shahzad has not adhered to this, repetitively,””Mohammad Shahzad has also breached the ACB Code of Conduct previously and was recently called for questioning by the ACB Discipline Committee in relation to a disciplinary matter during the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019. Mohammad Shahzad did not attend meetings scheduled with the Discipline Committee on 20th and 25th of the last month. The Discipline Committee will meet after Eid-ul Adha holidays to assess the breaches by Mohammad Shahzad and make a decision to be publicized soon,” ACB added.”ACB has well-equipped training and practice facilities within the country and Afghan players do not require to travel abroad for such purposes.”advertisementShahzad was dropped from the World Cup squad after their match against Sri Lanka in Cardiff on June 4. Notably, Shahzad had played the first 2 matches of the tournament for Afghanistan despite retiring hurt with a knee injury during their warm-up match against Pakistan.Shahzad had scans on his knee after retiring hurt in the Pakistan match. Upon return to Afghanistan, Shahzad lashed out at ACB and said he did not see himself playing cricket anymore.”I went to a doctor in London and he drained my knee of some fluids, gave me a pill and said that I could play after resting for two-three days,” Shahzad had said.”I had a practice session, bowled, batted, and had a keeping session, had lunch with my team-mates, and then sat down in the team bus (to return to the hotel) only to see the ICC press release on my phone saying I am out of the World Cup,” he explained.”That was the moment when I found out that I was unfit. I asked the manager, who asked me to put the phone in my pocket and talk to the doctor. The doctor looked at me helplessly and said he couldn’t do anything.”I don’t see myself playing anymore. It’s a dream to play the World Cup. I was removed from the 2015 World Cup [he wasn’t selected for fitness reasons] and now this one as well. I am going to consult with friends and family. My heart isn’t in cricket anymore.”Also Read | Rahkeem Cornwall: Tall and imposing West Indies all-rounder set to face India in Test seriesAlso Read | Agree with Sourav Ganguly, India need to pick a core group for all formats: Ajinkya RahaneAlso See:last_img read more

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Why Arsenal won’t sell Ramsey in January

first_imgAaron Ramsey will leave Arsenal this summer after 11 years with the club.The Welshman had a contract offer withdrawn by the Gunners earlier in the season but head coach Unai Emery will keep the Welshman until his contract expires at the end of the campaign.As revealed by Goal on Friday, Italian giants Juventus are close to signing the 28-year-old, who has made 352 appearances and scored 60 goals for the north London side since joining from Cardiff City in 2008. Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Ramsey’s time at Emirates Stadium has been fraught with highs and lows, but his ability to deliver in big games means he will always have a place in Arsenal history.Two FA Cup-winning goals, against Hull and Chelsea respectively, helped end a barren spell for the Gunners and it is those happy memories which many supporters are holding onto as his contract runs down over the next few months.But why are Arsenal prepared to lose Ramsey for free this summer instead of receiving a transfer fee for him this month? The answer lies in the club’s surprising dearth of options in the final third.While they do boast the likes of Mesut Ozil, Henrikh Mkhitaryan and summer signing Lucas Torreira in midfield, there is no single player like Ramsey in the squad.His box-to-box qualities, and ability to create chances and stretch play, make him a unique proposition for opposition defences – and it’s been no surprise to see him repeatedly making a big impact coming off the bench in recent games.Ramsey has three assists in 524 minutes this season, behind only Hector Bellerin (four) and level with Mesut Ozil. He’s also created 12 scoring opportunities so far, the second highest in the team, after Ozil.It’s evident that his contributions are worthy of a new contract extension, but Arsenal’s decision to withdraw their offer for a mixture of football and financial reasons is a sign of the change of priorities under the new hierarchy led Raul Sanllehi and Vinai Venkatesham.Aaron Ramsey Unai Emery Arsenal 2018-19Both have previously explained that Arsenal owner Stan Kroenke will support a self-sustaining business model, while it is unknown how far the club’s transfer budget can be stretched in January and beyond anyway.The need for a new defender is clear and new additions will almost certainly be looked at by Emery, a coach who is still getting to grips with his squad, working out his best system and shifting players out who he believes don’t fit with his footballing philosophy – such as Ramsey.Arsenal have one of the highest wage bills in the Premier League and Goal understands that there is a clear aim to reduce it during the coming seasons, while at the same time securing a return to the Champions League next season – a requirement which is imperative if Arsenal are able to challenge on any front financially.Santi Cazorla, Jack Wilshere and Lucas Perez all left the Emirates last summer but the signings of Bernd Leno, Sokratis, Matteo Guendouzi, Stephan Lichtsteiner and Torreira have all added to the club’s wage bill.When contract extensions for the likes of Granit Xhaka, Alex Iwobi, Ainsley Maitland-Niles and Calum Chambers are factored into the equation, the need to cut costs is clear.Arsenal are, thus, looking at bringing in a fresh, young group of hungry players rather than meeting the demands of senior players requesting £200,000-a-week, as was the case with Ramsey.Teenage talents such as Emile Smith Rowe and Joe Willock are both highly rated by Emery and his coaching staff, which only further justifies the decision to withdraw a contract offer for Ramsey and put faith in players who could realistically be ready for regular first-team football within the next couple of seasons.Ramsey will almost certainly be a success at Juventus. He has the technical ability, professionalism and work ethic to succeed in Italy, and is now entering the peak years of his career.However, as far as Arsenal are concerned, his summer departure makes as much sense for them as it does for the player.last_img read more

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BC couple helps California wildfire evacuees in Walmart parking lot

first_imgCHICO, Calif. — It was supposed to be a vacation in Paradise, but instead a British Columbia couple’s getaway to northern California has turned into a mission to help people fleeing deadly and destructive wildfires.Destinee and Paul Klyne of Penticton had planned a peaceful holiday in Paradise, Calif., but flames destroyed their Airbnb and much of the community before their arrival. They decided to go ahead with the trip anyway, and channel their vacation funds into relief for exhausted wildfire evacuees.They bought a bevy of $25 Walmart gift cards and set up in the store’s parking lot in Chico, where they joined forces with a food truck operator.Donations began pouring in and more food vendors offered to help, turning the parking lot into a hub of activity where the couple estimates they served 1,200 to 1,500 people yesterday.The couple will stop taking donations at 3 p.m. tomorrow because they’re scheduled to leave that night, but they suggest people donate directly to victims’ online fundraising campaigns or help in other ways.The Canadian Presslast_img read more

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Canada sanctions Saudis linked to Khashoggi killing

first_imgBUENOS AIRES, Argentina — Canada is imposing sanctions on Saudi Arabian nationals linked to the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland is announcing the move at a G20 summit in Buenos Aires.The sanctions freeze any assets the targets might have in Canada and says they cannot enter the country. The United States has already done something similar.Freeland says the sanctions are designed to target individuals who, are in the opinion of the government, responsible for or complicit in the writer’s October killing.Khashoggi was a critic of the Saudi monarchy. Though he was living in exile in the United States, he went to the Saudi consulate in Istanbul to get paperwork for his impending marriage and never came out.The Saudi government’s story about what happened has changed repeatedly, from questioning whether Khashoggi actually disappeared to admitting that he was killed by Saudi agents in what a prosecutor has called a bungled rogue operation to bring him back to Saudia Arabia.The Canadian Presslast_img read more

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GLEE STAR CORY MONTEITH HAD LITTLE TEETH WAS ON PAIN MEDS BEFORE

first_imgAdvertisement Login/Register With: LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment The mother of late actor Cory Monteith has admitted the Glee star was taking pain medication for dental work weeks before his tragic overdose.Monteith’s body was discovered in a hotel room in Vancouver in July 2013 with reported traces of morphine, codeine, alcohol and heroin in his system. The coroner ruled his death as an accidental overdose from “mixed drug toxicity” and suggested his intermittent bouts of drug abuse and abstinence could have lowered his tolerance to certain substances.It’s a theory Ann McGregor, 67, firmly believes, after she revealed the star had undergone “massive” dental work between May and July 2013, two months after he checked into a month-long rehab stay in April. Advertisement Advertisement Facebook Monteith was subsequently prescribed strong pain medication, which McGregor worries could have affected his sobriety without him realizing.“He had little teeth and they were all capped,” she told People. “He had a lot of medication in his system, which was not good for his body coming out of rehab.“He didn’t have enough drugs in his system to kill him, but for some reason it did because of his intolerance.”The actor’s mother went on to add that it feels like “no time at all” has passed since she lost her son aged 31, despite marking the five year anniversary of his death last week.She also reflected on their “very close” relationship, which she believes formed as a result of raising him by herself.“We used to go everywhere together,” she recalled. “We had a favourite restaurant where we’d share fish and chips. Even at three years old, he would stand at the counter and pay the bill. He could talk to anyone. He just had a way about him, and all I could do was enjoy it.”Now, McGregor works with Amber Academy, a Canadian non-profit organization that empowers youth through fine arts, in Monteith’s memory.“Cory believed in prevention, rather than trying to fix people,” she stated. “He wanted to give children opportunities to shine and feel good about themselves so they wouldn’t turn to drugs.” Twitterlast_img read more

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Ban Kimoon announces slate of new Special Representatives in Africa

UN spokesperson Michele Montas said that Mr. Ban had informed the Security Council of his intention to make the appointments and expected a response from the 15-member body shortly.He has chosen Ellen Margrethe Løj, who most recently served as Denmark’s Permanent Representative to the UN, to serve as Special Representative for Liberia, replacing Alan Doss of the United Kingdom.Mr. Doss will replace William Lacy Swing of the United States as the Special Representative to the DRC, where the UN peacekeeping mission known as MONUC is based.Choi Young-jin, formerly the Permanent Representative of the Republic of Korea to the UN, will become the Special Representative to Côte d’Ivoire, replacing Pierre Schori of Sweden.Guinea’s Bintou Keita is becoming a Deputy Special Representative in Burundi and Senegal’s Bacre Waly Ndiaye is being appointed to a post at the same level in the DRC under Mr. Doss.Meanwhile, Mr. Ban has also appointed Jan Beagle of New Zealand, who had been Assistant Secretary-General for Human Resources Management since October 2005, as Deputy Director-General of the UN Office in Geneva (UNOG).Ms. Beagle is tasked with strengthening the overall management capacity and coordination among the Secretariat’s organizations in Geneva, tackling current managerial challenges and enhancing the role of the UN in Geneva in advancing system-wide coherence. 18 October 2007Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today announced the appointment of three Special Representatives and two Deputy Special Representatives to act for him in four African countries trying to recover from prolonged war or insecurity – Burundi, Côte d’Ivoire, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and Liberia. read more

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Smoking and vaping banned in Hamilton city parks

Hamilton’s parks, recreation centres, and arenas are officially smoke and vape-free starting today.Hamilton’s city council amended a bylaw to ban smoking and vaping in all dog parks, sports fields, outdoor pools, beaches and some trails.The city says changes to the bylaw are meant to protect people from second-hand smoke and vape from tobacco and cannabis. They are also aimed at avoiding litter in green spaces, improving fire safety, providing “positive role modelling for youth” and supporting those quitting smoking.A press release from City Hall says “a progressive enforcement model” will be used. Initially, the focus will be on education and building public awareness of the bylaw. Following the initial steps, the release says people found smoking within city property could face charges.Councillors voted to pass the bylaw on June 26. Officials surveyed 991 residents who use Hamilton’s recreational facilities before making this change. read more

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Fed officials discussed possible rate hike fairly soon

Fed officials discussed possible rate hike ‘fairly soon’ FILE – In this Feb. 15, 2017 file photo, Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington before the House Financial Services Committee for the Fed’s semi-annual Monetary Policy Report to Congress. Federal Reserve officials earlier this month discussed the need to raise a key interest rate again “fairly soon,” especially if the economy remains strong. Minutes of the discussions in minutes released Wednesday, Feb. 22 showed that while Fed officials decided to keep a key rate unchanged at their Jan. 31-Feb. 1 meeting, there was growing concern about what could happen to inflation if the economy out-performed expectations. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite) by Martin Crutsinger, The Associated Press Posted Feb 22, 2017 12:49 pm MDT Last Updated Feb 22, 2017 at 3:40 pm MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email WASHINGTON – Federal Reserve officials earlier this month discussed the need to raise a key interest rate again “fairly soon,” especially if the economy remains strong.Minutes of the discussions in minutes released Wednesday showed that while Fed officials decided to keep a key rate unchanged at their Jan. 31-Feb. 1 meeting, there was growing concern about inflation if the economy out-performed expectations.“Several” Fed officials expressed worries that unemployment could fall substantially below the Fed’s 4.8 per cent unemployment goal. That could trigger inflation pressures that would require the Fed to boost rates at a faster pace than financial markets currently expect. Unemployment in December was 4.7 per cent although it inched back up to 4.8 per cent in January.Most economists had indicated they did not foresee a rate hike until June. But the discussion in the minutes might increase the possibility of a rate increase as soon as March.Paul Ashworth, chief U.S. economist at Capital Economics, said the “fairly soon” phrase in the minutes “clearly leaves the door open to a March rate hike although … we still think the Fed will delay until June.”Mark Hamrick, senior economic analyst for Bankrate.com, said that the minutes show “that policymakers are clearly focused on the possibility of raising rates fairly soon.” But Hamrick said he believed the Fed will be cautious given the uncertainty surrounding President Donald Trump’s economic program.The minutes showed that a couple of Fed officials suggested the central bank might need to alter the wording of its policy statement because currently the Fed’s assurances that it planned to raise rates at a “gradual” pace could be “misunderstood as a commitment of only one or two rate hikes per year.”The minutes were released with the customary three week delay. Fed officials spent time discussing Trump’s proposed stimulus program and its possible impact on the economy, although the minutes never mentioned Trump by name.“Most participants continued to see heightened uncertainty regarding the size, composition and timing of possible changes” to the government tax and spending policies, the minutes said.While some Fed officials said the central bank should not wait until the outlines of Trump’s program became clearer before raising rates, others urged more caution.This group argued against “adjusting monetary policy in anticipation of policy proposals that might not be enacted or that, if enacted, might turn out to have different consequences for economic activity and inflation than currently anticipated.”At the February meeting, the central bank left its key interest rate unchanged while noting that the economy was continuing to advance toward its twin objectives of maximum employment and inflation rising at a moderate annual rate of 2 per cent.The Fed in December boosted its key rate by a modest quarter-point to a new range of 0.5 per cent to 0.75 per cent. The Fed had waited a full year to raise rates for a second time after its initial rate hike in December 2015.The Fed noted that even with the two small rate hikes, the Fed’s target for its benchmark federal funds rate — the interest that banks charge each other — remained at a historically low level. It is only slightly higher than the record low near zero where the rate was for seven years as the central bank struggled to jump-start growth in the wake of the worst economic downturn since the 1930s.After the latest rate hike in December, the Fed issued an updated economic forecast which projected that the central bank expected to raise rates three times in 2017.Many economists believe the Fed will raise rates between two and three times this year. One complicating factor is the uncertainty over how much of his ambitious economic program President Donald Trump will be able to get through Congress. His stimulus package includes tax cuts for businesses and individiuals, increased infrastructure spending and a roll back of regulations in such areas as banking.Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen, delivering the Fed’s semiannual economic report to Congress, said last week that the economy remains on track to achieve the Fed’s goals and noted the Fed’s December expectation of three rate hikes this year. But she did not signal when the next hike might occur.“Whether it is March, or May or June … I can’t tell you which meeting it would be,” Yellen told lawmakers. read more

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Guterres underlines climate action urgency as UN weather agency confirms record global

His reaction on Wednesday came after WMO issued a report confirming that 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018 were the four warmest years recorded to date. The analysis, based on the monitoring performed by five leading international organisations, also shows that the global average surface temperature in 2018 was approximately 1° Celsius above the pre-industrial (1850-1900) baseline.Met OfficeThe five data sets used by WMO to monitor global temperatures confirm that the past four years have been the warmest on record. “The long-term temperature trend is far more important than the ranking of individual years, and that trend is an upward one,” said WMO Secretary-General Petteri Taalas. “The 20 warmest years on record have been in the past 22 years. The degree of warming during the past four years has been exceptional, both on land and in the ocean.”“Temperatures are only part of the story. Extreme and high impact weather affected many countries and millions of people, with devastating repercussions for economies and ecosystems in 2018,” he said.“Many of the extreme weather events are consistent with what we expect from a changing climate. This is a reality we need to face up to. Greenhouse gas emission reduction and climate adaptation measures should be a top global priority,” said Mr. Taalas.Noting “with concern” this data, which was first released in November 2018, UN Secretary-General Guterres said it confirms “the urgency of addressing climate action”, and echoes the science presented by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) in its October 2018 special report on the impacts of a global warming of 1.5°C.The IPCC report that found that limiting global warming to 1.5°C will require “rapid and far-reaching transitions in land, energy, industry, buildings, transport, and cities” and that global net emissions of carbon dioxide, attributable to human activity, would need to fall by about 45 per cent from 2010 levels by 2030, reaching ‘net zero’ around 2050.The Secretary-General stated that, “to make these transformations, we need to significantly increase the global level of climate action and ambition”.In order to mobilize political will, Mr. Guterres is convening a Climate Summit on 23 September this year, focusing on nine key areas:Raised ambition on climate mitigation measures.How to manage the transition to alternative energy sources.Managing industrial transition.Coming up with solutions through agriculture, oceans, forests and nature-related environments.Focus on infrastructure, cities and through local action.Issues of climate finance, notably carbon pricing.Increased resilience and adaptation, especially for the most vulnerable.A focus on social and political drivers.Citizen and political mobilization.The Secretary-General is working closely with Member States and non-party stakeholders to enable outcomes in these areas to the Summit, in order to send “strong market and political signals that can inject momentum into the race” to meet the goals of the 2015 Paris Agreement, in which countries committed collectively to limit global warming to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels. Informing the discussions at the Summit alongside other key scientific reports, WMO will issue the full 2018 State of the Climate report this coming March.  It will provide a comprehensive overview of temperature variability and trends, high-impact events, and key indicators of long-term climate change such as increasing carbon dioxide concentrations; Arctic and Antarctic sea ice; sea level rise and ocean acidification.It will be accompanied by UN-wide policy recommendations statement for decision-makers on the interplay between weather, climate and water supply, and the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). read more

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Football Brendon Whites ties to OSU make him an early leader in

Ohio State freshman Brendon White speaks to the media at National Signing Day on Feb. 1 at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center. Credit: Jacob Myers | Assistant Sports EditorThe first time freshman Brendon White steps onto the field for Ohio State, whenever that might be, the world will finally know what position White will play.In high school, White played defensive back, wide receiver and quarterback, so the best way to classify him is as an athlete.White might sound like the prototypical four-star athlete that is so often brought into OSU to contribute in more ways than one. But being raised a Buckeye, the understanding of that expectation has molded White.Growing up in Powell, Ohio, roughly 25 minutes from OSU’s campus, White didn’t have much of a choice other than to be a fan of the Scarlet and Gray — especially knowing his father, William, played safety at OSU from 1984 to 1987.William White won two Big Ten championships and was named All-Big Ten his senior season. Most freshmen come to OSU with aspirations of national championships. Brendan White’s goals are grounded in his roots.“The only thing I want to take from my dad coming here is he was a captain, so I’m trying to be a captain,” White said on National Signing Day. “He was always a 4.0 (GPA) student, so I told him my two goals here is to be an academic All-American and eventually be a captain here.”The original plan constructed by former linebackers coach Luke Fickell was to have White converted to linebacker. Once Fickell left for the head coaching job at the University of Cincinnati, and wide receiver Noah Brown unexpectedly departed for the NFL, Meyer called White into his office to talk about the possibility of playing wide receiver.For linebacker, White likes the comparison to Darron Lee, former OSU and current New York Jets linebacker. As a wide receiver, he wants to be compared to Michael Thomas, current New Orleans Saints player who topped franchise records and led all rookie receivers in yards, receptions and touchdowns. Being bred in the same area of Ohio with clear ambitions to excel in the classroom and be a leader for OSU, similarities can be drawn to former Buckeye captain linebacker Joshua Perry, who now plays for the San Diego Chargers.Perry is also from Powell and played at Olentangy High School, just a couple miles down the road from Olentangy Liberty High School, where White played. White said he is very close with Perry. He said the two even had breakfast a few days before National Signing Day.“I talked with him before I came out here,” White said. “My senior year, I talked with him a lot just saying ‘How is it, what’s it like?’ He has definitely helped me with the process coming here so I had a heads up before I officially got here.”Having a football mentor like his father was already a big impact, but then having a connection to Perry, considered one of the greatest humanitarians and team players Meyer has had at OSU, just adds to the positive influence around White.White joined the football program in December during Fiesta Bowl practice, a full month before the rest of the early enrollees from the 2017 recruiting class. He wasn’t allowed to participate in practice in pads, but went through team warmups and sat in team meetings to develop his football IQ.Having the opportunity to be around a team that was preparing for a national semifinal was a rarity. For it to happen to a homegrown player like White, who is fully aware of the culture inside the Woody Hayes Athletic Center, shouldn’t come as a complete surprise.“My dad would always take me up to the Woody, watching practice,” he said. “I was really close to Coach Tressel. I think it was about eighth grade and we were playing That Team Up North and this excitement around the stadium was very exciting. I knew from then on I was going to work hard to try and get that scholarship to come here and play football.” read more

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Wonder of mobile internet means I can deal with cases on the

first_imgBut Sir James dismissed the man’s application and said he had not proved that the couple had been dishonest. Sir James Munby says he looks at cases on the move (stock picture) Social workers at Brighton & Hove City Council had raised welfare concerns shortly after the little girl, now four, was born.Judges had been told that the children’s mother had mental health problems and was unable to safely care for them. A father-of-four had wanted to stop his youngest child being adopted.Sir James, who is the President of the Family Division of the High Court and is based at the Royal Courts of Justice, ruled against the man.He had fully analysed evidence at hearing in the Family Division of the High Court in London in July.The hearing was the latest stage in a court battle which has run for more than four years. The Royal Courts of Justice in London England’s most senior family court judge has told how he kept up to speed with a case via the internet while travelling home for a Bank Holiday weekend on a train.Sir James Munby said he got an email from barrister Janet Bazley QC on May 26 after leaving Chester, got emails from court office staff in London as he headed south, then sent an email to Ms Bazley while on a platform at Reading waiting for a connection.The judge has outlined detail of his working journey in a written ruling on the case.center_img Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. The Royal Courts of Justice in LondonCredit:Newscast Online / Alamy Stock Photo Sir James Munby says he looks at cases on the move (stock picture)Credit:Lauren Hurley/PA Wire A local family court judge had decided in the autumn of 2013 that the three eldest children – now aged 13, 10 and eight – should live with their father.But that judge said the little girl should be adopted – and social services staff had placed her with a couple who wanted to adopt.A High Court judge then ruled that the little girl should return home, after her father appealed.The couple then challenged that decision – and the little girl stayed with them pending the outcome of their challenge.In April, Sir James ruled in the couple’s favour and said the little girl should stay at her adoptive home.He said the “sad reality” was that the little girl had no “meaningful relationship” with her birth family and saw the couple she lived with as “daddy and mummy”.But on May 26, Ms Bazley, who represented the girl’s father, emailed Sir James and asked him to reconsiderShe said there was evidence that the couple were planning to move to the United States – and said the girl’s father was concerned.The man subsequently explained how he thought that the couple would stay in England – and he asked Sir James to halt the adoption.last_img read more