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SA delegation confident ahead of COP17

first_img23 November 2011 Water and Environmental Affairs Minister Edna Molewa, the leader of South Africa’s delegation to COP 17, says “exam fever” is the best analogy to explain how the government is feeling just days ahead of the United Nations climate summit. Molewa was in Durban on Tuesday for a pre-COP 17 meeting and to address the media on the readiness of the South African delegation to the meeting. The 17th Conference of the Parties (COP17) to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) takes place at Durban’s International Convention Centre from 28 November to 9 December.Exam jitters The minister said the South African delegation had prepared itself exhaustively for the event but was experiencing a bit of “exam fever”. But working with colleagues from around the globe had definitely eased some of the jitters. She was extremely pleased with the rate at which South Africans had educated themselves about climate change. Molewa said the words “climate change” were now being used on a daily basis. She said a few days ago when she was in rural areas in the Eastern Cape, people were talking about the global issue. As the leader of the South African delegation to COP 17, Molewa was confident that the team had done its work and would continue to do so in the next few weeks.Three focus areas The delegation would focus on three preparatory areas, the first being the development, compilation, approval and lobbying of the South African negotiating position. The second area will be the coordination and implementation of greening and legacy projects that mitigate the impacts of climate change. The Public Climate Change Outreach and Mobalisation Programme – aimed at increasing awareness and understanding of the issue – is the third area of focus. Molewa also touched on the gazetted National Climate Change Response Policy, which outlines the government’s vision for an effective climate change response and transition to a climate-resilient and low-carbon economy and society. “As part of our programme, we have proactively engaged with domestic stakeholders to develop South Africa’s position and policy, on the basis of which we engaged with the African continent and other negotiating colleagues such as the BASIC countries,” said Molewa.Carrying the aspirations of a continent The minister added that COP17 must provide opportunities for both South Africa and Africa to ensure climate change patterns did not threaten development. “For Africa, the success of the climate change talks is central, since it is projected that by 2080, about 70-million people and up to 30 percent of Africa’s coastal infrastructure could face the risk of coastal flooding because of sea level rise. “South Africa, carrying the aspirations of Africa and the developing world, hopes to succeed in keeping the Kyoto Protocol as part of a future climate regime, as we negotiate an outcome of the negotiations under the Convention.” Source: BuaNewslast_img read more

A Bipartisan Team Pitches a PACE Revival

first_imgBy the end of last year, most municipalities that had been funding Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) loan programs had stopped doing so. The reason: mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac declared they would no longer guarantee mortgages on properties with PACE liens. Fannie and Freddie contended that because PACE loans are senior to private loans, including first mortgages, mortgages on PACE-encumbered properties were too risky to guarantee. Never mind that the cost of PACE loans, which were funded by local bond issues and intended to help homeowners finance energy efficiency improvements, were covered over time by savings on energy costs. In Fannie and Freddie’s opinion, homeowners’ obligations to make PACE loan payments, which were added to property tax bills, increased the risk of mortgage default.PACE-friendly jurisdictions raised a stink. Some civic leaders threatened to sue the two mortgage companies (California, where PACE originated and was popular, actually did sue), mayors gushed about the benefits of PACE programs, and lawmakers began hatching potential work-arounds, including a bill that would have banned lenders from imposing penalties or stricter criteria on municipalities that use PACE, and would have prevented lenders from requiring homeowners to pay off property assessments, including PACE loans, before refinancing their mortgages or selling their property.Time for new rulesThis week, though, a bipartisan team in the House of Representatives took a somewhat tougher tack by introducing a bill designed to nail down legislatively what the mortgage giants’ conservator, the Federal Housing Finance Agency, might resist bureaucratically.Cosponsored by California Democrat Mike Thompson and Republicans Nan Hayworth of New York and Dan Lungren of California, the PACE Assessment Protection Act of 2011 (click here for a 19-page draft of the bill) would establish uniform lending requirements for PACE loans in all communities that choose to fund PACE programs. And in fact, the lending criteria seem to closely resemble in stringency current guidelines for private loans.Among the requirements:Property owners seeking PACE funding must obtain written authorization from the holders of the first mortgage on their property.A PACE applicant’s property tax payments must have been current for three years or the property owner’s period of ownership, whichever is shorter.A PACE applicant’s property can have no involuntary liens over $1,000 and no notices of default.PACE applicants can have no bankruptcy filings over the previous seven years, and mortgage payments must be current.The property itself will be subject to an audit and a feasibility study by a Building Performance Institute auditor, a Home Energy Rating System (HERS) rater, or auditor commissioned by the local government.Financing terms requiring that the total savings on energy and water are expected to exceed the total cost to the homeowner.The total amount of the assessment can’t exceed 10% of the estimated value of the property.The homeowner has to have equity in the property equal to or greater than 15% of its total estimated value.The financing term can’t be more than 20 years.Advocacy group PACENow is pushing this bill as hard as it can, and has been quick to cite findings of a study of PACE programs in four cities that examines their potentially positive effects on local economies. PACENow commissioned economic consulting firm ECONorthwest to conduct the study, which shows that $54 million spent on PACE projects in the four cities generated $142 million in economic output, $9 million in federal taxes, $6 million in state and local taxes, and more than 800 jobs nationwide.It’s obviously too early to tell how the bill will fare, but it’s also obvious it has some vocal supporters.last_img read more

Sangram Singh’s Bollywood debut to be called Vande Mataram or Yuva

first_imgCelluloid is getting progressively sporty. After tennis player Leander Paes and boxer Vijender Singh, it’s time for wrestler Sangram Singh to make his big screen debut. He says he wanted his debut outing to carry a positive message for the youths.Sangram has been signed on to play a sports coach by producer Dhanraj Jerhani in a film tentatively entitled “Vande Mataram”. As expected, the film starring Sangram is sporty.Sangram finished in fourth place in season seven of Bigg Boss in 2013″I play a sports coach to 16 to 17-year-old kids. What I specially liked about my role was that I get to spread a positive message against drugs and sexual violence. I feel these are rampant problems among the young,” he said.”As a responsible citizen and a role model to a certain section of people, I need to use every available platform to reach out to the impressionable sections of our country,” he added.Sangram says he chose this project because he trusts the producers.”‘Vande Mataram’ is about the need for the young to remain healthy, drugs-free and to desist from sexual violence,” he said.The title “Vande Mataram” is tentative.”We’re trying to get that title. Otherwise we’ll call the film ‘Yuva’. I know it was the title of a Mani Ratnam film five years ago. But now we can get it,” he added.last_img read more

Team India gifts Virat Kohli-signed jersey to Shahid Afridi

first_imgIndia and Pakistan may have strained political relations, which have affected bilateral cricket between the cricket crazy nations in the recent past, but their meetings in ICC events are still eagerly awaited by fans all over the world. It also hasn’t affected the relations between the Indian and Pakistani players.The Indian national cricket team’s presented a Virat Kohli shirt, signed by all the players to former captain Shahid Afridi on retiring from international cricket.”To Shahid Bhai, best wishes, always a pleasure playing against you,” Virat Kohli wrote on the shirt.Virat Kohli’s shirt, signed by Indian team, for Shahid Afridi, with a message “always a pleasure playing against you.” pic.twitter.com/KexlCjTNeZ- Faizan Lakhani (@faizanlakhani) April 15, 2017A Pakistani journalist recently posted a picture of the jersey on Twitter.The jersey had the signatures of Virat Kohli, Yuvraj Singh, Ashish Nehra, Jasprit Bumrah, Suresh Raina, Pawan Negi, Mohammed Shami, Ravindra Jadeja, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Ajinkya Rahane, Shikhar Dhawan, R Ashwin, Hardik Pandya, and coach Ravi Shashtri.The last time both countries faced each other was in a Super 10 stag match in the ICC World T20 in 2016, with Eden Gardens playing host.Shahid Afridi announced his retirement from international cricket in February, bringing to an end his sometimes controversial 21-year career.The 36-year-old all-rounder was active only in the International Twenty20 format, having already quit Test cricket back in 2010 and One-Day Internationals in 2015.Afridi was announced as one of eight Champion Ambassadors, along with India’s Harbhajan Singh, Bangladesh’s Habibul Bashar, England’s Ian Bell, New Zealand’s Shane Bond, Australia’s Mike Hussey, Sri Lanka’s Kumar Sangakkara, and South Africa’s Graeme Smith, for the ICC Champions Trophy which will be held in the United Kingdom from June 1 to 18.advertisementlast_img read more

India vs England, Trent Bridge Test: Weather forecast for today and tomorrow

first_imgVirat Kohli and Team India come to Trent Bridge in Nottingham for the third Test of the five-match series against England looking to survive in the contest and put up the aggressive brand of cricket they have come to be known for in the last two years.First Test in Edgbaston and the second in Lord’s was nothing that India expected. The Indian batsmen struggled to keep up with the pace and swing from James Anderson and even against 20-year-old Sam Curran. If not for a magnificent 149 in the first innings of the Edgbaston Test by Virat Kohli, the loss may not have been as close as 31 runs.In Lord’s, with the conditions and rain falling in place for England, Anderson and Stuart Broad wrecked havoc and the famed batting line-up of India were found wanting again. If one thought that things could not be worse for India, captain Kohli also suffered a bad back.Come Trent Bridge, India will look to begin fresh. Jasprit Bumrah is fit and back and available for selection and Kohli said in the press conference on Friday that he was feeling good and his back was alright, though only the on-field display will attest to that.READ – India seek redemption in must-win Trent Bridge Test against EnglandCurrently at Trent Bridge, the sun is up and the conditions are partly cloudy. The conditions are windy but it is not expected to rain any time of the day. India vs England, Trent Bridge Test: Day 1 of the third Test is not expected to see rain. (accuweather.com Photo)The play is expected to start at 3.30pm IST when the cloud cover is expected to be as high as 70 per cent. However, the cloud cover may depart as the day goes by.advertisementEven though Saturday’s weather forecast looks favourable for India should Virat Kohli win the toss and chose to bat, Sunday is expected to bring some rain with it.Also read – Virat Kohli fires Team India up before 3rd Test: Only option is to winSunday may be extremely windy and there’s a big chance of shower around 6pm.The Trent Bridge ground is a seamer-friendly wicket and the extra bounce and pitch from Bumrah may give India an edge in their bowling with Mohammed Shami and Ishant Sharma getting good support.However, the focus remains on the woeful batting that India have displayed so far. The visitors are expected to make a few changes in their playing XI. Rishabh Pant may get his Test debut in place of Dinesh Karthik, who has scored only 21 runs in the four innings so far. Murali Vijay will also be under scanner after averaging 12.8 in Tests this year.Here are the squads of both India and England for the Trent Bridge Test:India: Virat Kohli (C), Shikhar Dhawan, Murali Vijay, KL Rahul, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane, Dinesh Karthik, Rishabh Pant, Karun Nair, Hardik Pandya, R Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Kuldeep Yadav, Ishant Sharma, Umesh Yadav, Shardul Thakur, Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah.READ – India walk into another England fortress in a bid to stay alive in Test seriesEngland: Joe Root (C), Alastair Cook, Keaton Jennings, Jonny Bairstow, Jos Buttler, Oliver Pope, Moeen Ali, Adil Rashid, Jamie Porter, Sam Curran, James Anderson, Stuart Broad, Chris Woakes, Ben Stokes.last_img read more

Video: Ohio State’s Joey Bosa Has Some Wonderfully Simple Trash Talk For Jim Harbaugh

first_imgJoey Bosa walking off the field after an Ohio State football game.GLENDALE, AZ – JANUARY 01: Defensive lineman Joey Bosa #97 of the Ohio State Buckeyes reacts as he walks off the field after defeating the Notre Dame Fighting Irish 44-28 in the BattleFrog Fiesta Bowl at University of Phoenix Stadium on January 1, 2016 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)Jim Harbaugh has done a great job in his very brief tenure at Michigan, going 10-3 in his first season, and inking a Top 10 class—and a No. 1 recruit—in his first full recruiting cycle this week. The next step, however, is a little more tricky. Harbaugh needs to beat Ohio State, and this year, his Wolverines weren’t even close.FOX Sports’ The Buzzer caught up with Ohio State defensive end Joey Bosa on Friday and asked if he had any words for the Michigan head coach. He only had one, and it is pretty perfect: “sorry.”Michigan’s first year under Harbaugh went about as well as could be expected, but a 42-13 loss to OSU has to stick in the craw of Wolverine fans. Luckily, next year Bosa won’t be there to push their offensive linemen around.[Eleven Warriors]last_img read more

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Middlesex Sheriffs Office ReAccredited By The American Correctional Association

first_imgBILLERICA, MA — Middlesex Sheriff Peter J. Koutoujian today announced the Middlesex Sheriff’s Office (MSO) has earned re-accreditation from the American Correctional Association (ACA), garnering 100 percent compliance on 358 total standards.“Across the country, the Middlesex Sheriff’s Office is today seen as a national leader in a range of areas,” said Sheriff Koutoujian.  “This recognition further reinforces that and is a testament to the outstanding work of each and every member of the MSO, not just on one day, but over an extended period of time.”According to the ACA, “accreditation is intended to improve facility operations through adherence to clear standards relevant to all areas/operations of the facility, including safety, security, order, inmate care, programs, justice, and administration.”The Middlesex Sheriff’s Office was formally awarded re-accreditation following a successful audit earlier this summer and a final presentation before the ACA’s Commission on Accreditation for Corrections in Minneapolis.The MSO first earned ACA accreditation in August 2015 and agencies are reviewed every three years following their initial accreditation.To learn more about the ACA Accreditation process, please follow this link to the ACA website http://goo.gl/J3jDE8.Assistant Deputy Superintendent Dan M. Finn (from left), Middlesex Sheriff Peter J. Koutoujian, Special Sheriff Shawn Jenkins and Superintendent Osvaldo Vidal with the re-accreditation certificate from American Correctional Association (ACA).(NOTE: The above press release is from the Middlesex Sheriff’s Office.)Like Wilmington Apple on Facebook. Follow Wilmington Apple on Twitter. Follow Wilmington Apple on Instagram. Subscribe to Wilmington Apple’s daily email newsletter HERE. Got a comment, question, photo, press release, or news tip? Email wilmingtonapple@gmail.com.Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedMiddlesex Sheriff’s Office Receives Accreditation From American Correctional AssociationIn “Government”Senator Markey & Middlesex Sheriff Koutoujian Promote Expansion Of Opioid Treatment In JailsIn “Government”51 Wilmington Students Graduate From Middlesex Sheriff’s Youth Public Safety AcademyIn “Government”last_img read more

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Saudi arrests 11 princes over antiausterity protest

first_imgThe protest took place in the Saudi capital Riyadh. AFP file photoSaudi authorities have arrested 11 princes who protested against the kingdom’s austerity measures and who could face trial, a news website close to the government reported on Saturday.Sabq said the princes, who were not named, were protesting at a historical Riyadh royal palace, Qasr al-Hokm, against a government’s decision to stop paying the water and electricity bills of royals.They were also demanding “financial compensation” after one of their cousins had been sentenced for an unspecified crime.The princes were transferred to the high-security Ha’ir prison in the capital “ahead of their trial”, Sabq said, citing unnamed sources.It said the princes “were informed of the error of their demands but they refused to leave Qasr al-Hokm”, prompting the royal guards to intervene and arrest them.Saudi officials contacted by AFP Saturday were not immediately reachable for comment.Saudi Arabia has introduced a string of austerity measures over the past two years to boost revenues and cut spending as the global slump in oil prices led to ballooning budget deficits.The kingdom’s push to diversify its oil-dependent economy has been linked to the arrest of more than 200 princes in November in an anti-corruption purge spearheaded by powerful Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the king’s son and heir to the throne.Most of those detained were held at the palatial Ritz-Carlton hotel in Riyadh, which has turned into a luxury prison.King Salman on Saturday announced a boost in stipends and tax relief for Saudi citizens, particularly those employed in the military or public sector.The International Labour Organization estimates that unemployment among Saudis aged 15 to 25 stood at 36.2 per cent last year.last_img read more

Louisville Postgame Notes vs NC State

first_imgStory Links Thursday’s outing marked the ninth time this season Cunningham has reached double-figures in the scoring column. Cunningham has registered 10 or more points 80 times in his collegiate career. Cunningham set season highs for free throws made (nine) and free throws attempted (11). Fore set season highs in made field goals (four) and assists (four). Jordan Nwora registered his 26th career double-figure scoring outing, including the 17th this season, finishing with 13 points on Thursday night. Malik Williams reached double-figures in the scoring column for the second straight game and the sixth time this season after totaling 14 points against the Wolfpack. Louisville is 142-22 all-time at the KFC Yum! Center, which is in its ninth season as the home for the Cardinals. The Cardinals are 5-1 in the ACC for the third time in their five seasons in the conference (2015-16 and 2017-18). UofL has never registered a 6-1 record in the ACC. Through its first 19 games this season, Louisville has produced 35 runs of 8-0 or better, including an 8-0 run in the first half against NC State. The Cardinals have scored 80 or more points in 12 of 19 games this season, including five of six ACC games. The only ACC game they failed to reach 80 points was the 79-51 win at Georgia Tech on Jan. 19. The 23 turnovers by the Wolfpack matched the highest total for a Louisville opponent equaling the number for Southern on Nov. 13, 2018. UofL is 50-0 in non-overtime games since Dec. 18, 2000 when forcing 23 or more turnovers. The last loss was 68-65 to Western Kentucky on Dec. 9, 2000 in Freedom Hall when the Hilltoppers finished with 25 turnovers. Including Thursday’s performance, the Cardinals have made eight or more three-pointers in 13 of 19 games this season. Louisville’s 82.8% (24-of-29) free throw shooting was its best percentage from the stripe with at least 25 attempts since making 86.7% (26-of-30) in a win at Western Kentucky on Dec. 20, 2014. The 24 made free throws marked UofL’s highest total since making 30 free throws against Michigan State on Nov. 27, 2018. The Cardinals moved to 13-0 this season when shooting a better percentage from the field than their opponent. Thursday’s game marked the first win for Louisville since Jan. 24, 1996 (61-57 against Saint Louis) when allowing 40 percent or better from three-point range and being outrebounded by 10 or more.PLAYER NOTES With his pair of three-pointers against the Wolfpack, Ryan McMahon has made at least two trifectas in 10 of 19 games this season.Print Friendly Version SERIES NOTES Enoch connected on a season-high two three-point baskets in the win over NC State. Christen Cunningham led the Cardinals in scoring for the fifth time this season as the graduate transfer finished with a team-leading 17 points. Louisville holds a 12-10 lead in the all-time series with NC State, which dates back to 1949. The Cardinals are 7-2 at home against the Wolfpack, including a 2-1 record at the KFC Yum! Center. Louisville is 4-2 against NC State since joining the ACC.TEAM NOTES Nwora matched a career high with his four assists. With 10 points, Steven Enoch has reached double-figures in four of his last five games and 10 times overall this season. Dwayne Sutton achieved double-figures in scoring for the 12th time in his two seasons in Louisville, including his 11th this season after registering 10 points on Thursday. Khwan Fore matched a season high with his nine points against NC State. Williams has nine career double-figure scoring performances. Williams equaled a season high connecting on a pair of three-pointers for the sixth time this season.last_img read more