South Africa urged to save electricity


first_img6 March 2014 The Cabinet called on South African households and industry to do more to save electricity on Thursday as heavy rains across the country compelled power utility Eskom to resort to rotational load-shedding for the first time in six years. “The grid has enough capacity, but due to the heavy rains across the country, especially in Mpumalanga, where we source most of our coal, it has left coal stocks wet and this has put unexpected strain on our energy system, which is already close to capacity,” Acting Performance Monitoring and Evaluation Minister Edna Molelwa told a journalists following a Cabinet meeting in Pretoria on Thursday. State-owned supplier Eskom, which produces about 85% of its electricity from coal, started load shedding at 9am on Thursday. This was expected to affect numerous parts of the country up until about 10pm. Eskom had earlier declared a power emergency, asking its industrial customers reduce use by 10%. The utility will publish its load-shedding schedule online at loadshedding.eskom.co.za. “We have not received information that the cuts will have a negative [impact] on the economy,” Molewa said. “The rain will subside and we will return to normality.” The Cabinet thanked South African businesses that had implemented energy-saving initiatives, particularly when the national grid has been under pressure. Tuesday’s power emergency was the fourth one since November 2013, underlining the urgency of a growing energy deficit as economic growth and population expansion put increasing pressure on South Africa’s power supply. While capacity expansion has not kept pace with demand, two new coal-fired power plants – Medupi and Kusile – are nearing completion. Each will add 4 800 MW to South Africa’s grid, making them among the largest power stations in the world. Medupi is expected to be ready in late 2014, followed by Kusile soon after. Alongside the planned long-term expansion in capacity, Eskom has sought to slow demand growth, calling upon both retail and corporate customers to reduce their consumption, especially during peak demand hours. The government has also announced plans to provide tax incentives to companies that initiate measures to reduce consumption. SAnews.gov.za and SAinfo reporterlast_img read more

10 months agoCardiff confident landing Liverpool fullback Clyne – thanks to Warnock


first_imgCardiff confident landing Liverpool fullback Clyne – thanks to Warnockby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveCardiff City are chasing Liverpool fullback Nathaniel Clyne.The Mirror says Cardiff are confident of winning the race to sign Clyne on loan.The 27-year-old has been back on the scene at Anfield in recent weeks but will move down the pecking order again when Joe Gomez returns to fitness.Fulham and Leicester have also shown an interest in taking the right-back next month.But Bluebirds boss Neil Warnock is hopeful that his past association with Clyne — the pair worked together at Crystal Palace — will give him the edge. TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

Toronto stock market spikes loonie falls following Bank of Canada speech


first_imgTORONTO – Canada’s main stock index soared as the loonie fell after the governor of the Bank of Canada signalled in a speech it would be taking a more cautious approach on any future rate hikes.The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index climbed 135.54 points to 15,609.66 on the strength of broad-based gain that saw all major sectors, excluding gold, push ahead.The Canadian dollar was trading at an average price of 80.57 cents US, down 0.27 of a cent.Central bank governor Stephen Poloz stressed Wednesday there’s no prearranged route for further interest rate hikes after the sizzling national economy motivated him to raise the rate once in July and again earlier this month.The speech marked the first public comments by Poloz since the bank drew criticism for its communications approach ahead of the September hike, which caught many forecasters off guard.“So the major changes in his tone were that he’s going to monitor very closely movements in the long-term rates,” said Macan Nia, a senior investment strategist at Manulife Investments.“And I think the one line that really stuck out for market participants was that he said there’s no predetermined path for interest rates. As a result you saw the Canadian dollar sell off and you saw the TSX rally.”Nia said Poloz’s announcement was a primary driver for financials in particular. Also helping the TSX, he added, was the continuation of positive news about oil markets and a “bullish oil sentiment” over the past couple of weeks.The November crude contract was up 26 cents to US$52.14 per barrel.On the corporate front, Bombardier Inc.’s (TSX:BBD.B) shares lost more than seven per cent to close at $2.10 as investors weighed the prospect of a 220 per cent duty on U.S. sales of its flagship CSeries passenger jets and the European merger of two railway rivals.South of the border, New York stock indices jumped after a U.S. Labor Department report showed business investment rose in August for the second month in a row. Investors hope that means U.S. manufacturing is getting stronger as the global economy continues to improve.The Dow Jones industrial average was up 56.39 points to 22,340.71. The S&P 500 index added 10.20 points to 2,507.04 and the Nasdaq composite index advanced 73.10 points to 6,453.26.Investors also eyed a proposed tax plan by President Donald Trump and congressional Republicans that cuts tax rates for individuals and corporations, reduces the number of personal tax brackets, and nearly doubles the standard deduction used by most Americans. They propose to cut the top corporate tax rate to 25 per cent from its current 35 per cent.However, with months of negotiations likely ahead and many key details missing, it’s not clear what kind of plan might ultimately pass.“With the long-anticipated Trump tax reform package, you saw markets didn’t react either way immediately,” said Nia. “It’s short on details.”Elsewhere in commodities, the December gold contract was down $13.90 to US$1,287.80 an ounce.The November natural gas contract gained six cents to US$3.06 per mmBTU and the December copper contract edged up a penny at US$2.93 a pound.– With files from The Associated Press.Follow @DaveHTO on Twitter.last_img read more

Legislation introduced to limit pain and suffering payouts on minor injury claims


first_imgA limit on pain and suffering damages for minor injuries will allow ICBC to redirect resources to increasing benefits for lost pay and medical rehabilitation for all people injured in accidents. A limit of $5,500 on pain and suffering payouts for minor injury claims would also go into effect on April 1st, 2019. The bill defines a minor injury as one “that does not result in a serious impairment or a permanent serious disfigurement” and is not resolved in 12 months. It gives the government broad power to define specific minor injuries in the future.  Injury costs in B.C. increased 80 percent between 2009 and 2016, from from $1.5 billion to $2.7 billion.“Today’s legislation is about doing what’s best for B.C. drivers – both in what they pay for insurance and in making sure they get the best coverage if they’re injured,” said Eby. “For years, B.C. drivers have had to pay more and more simply to cover the spiralling legal and administrative costs at ICBC. We can’t right the past – but we can put ICBC back on track to deliver more affordable rates and better coverage for drivers moving forward.”“It is unacceptable, not just that British Columbians faced skyrocketing rates while ICBC lost hundreds of millions of dollars, but also that benefits for injured drivers, passengers, cyclists and pedestrians have been frozen in time for a quarter century. We are rebalancing where ICBC premium dollars go. We’re shifting the money out of administration, expert reports and court processes, and into driver’s pockets through stable rates and better benefits.” VICTORIA, B.C. — Attorney General David Eby says that the provincial government has introduced legislation to try to restore the finances of ICBC, which he referred to in January as a “financial dumpster fire.”If they’re approved by the legislature, the amendments to the Insurance Act and the Civil Resolution Tribunal Act will simplify dispute resolution processes for cases under $50,000, allowing them to be resolved in as little as 90 days. Those cases are currently lasting two to three years in B.C. Supreme Court.The government said that legal fees and expenses have grown to 24 percent of ICBC’s total annual costs.last_img read more

Another step forward towards a Community Foundation


first_imgThe creation of a Community Foundation is listed as a 2019 initiative in Council’s Strategic Plan.Mayor Lori Ackerman shared, right now the city spends a significant amount on ‘Grants in Aid’ and permissive tax exemptions.  When the Community Foundation (CF) is established, the funding could come from the CF rather than our operating budget.As the community grows, so too are the requests for assistance.  A CF can determine its ability to fund based on its revenues from the fund’s investments and accommodate the decisions year-round rather than a once a year budget, shared Mayor AckermanCLICK HERE FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – City Council approved $165,751.00 towards the development of a Community Foundation (CF) from surplus 2019 C5 project funds.On Monday, September 9th, 2019, Council awarded the bid for a Community Foundation to KEA Canada Ltd of Canmore, Alberta.On August 27, 2019, city staff met to review submitted proposals which were reviewed against a scoring matrix, which included Company Overview, Project Team and Experience, Methodology, Project Plan, Schedule, and Fees.last_img read more

SC demolishes Modi Jaitley BJPs stand on electoral bonds Yechury


first_imgNew Delhi: Welcoming the Supreme Court’s decision on electoral bonds, CPI(M) General Secretary Sitaram Yechury Friday said the apex court had “demolished” the stand taken by the BJP-led NDA government on the issue. The Supreme Court Friday did not stop political funding through electoral bonds but brought several checks on it to bring transparency by directing all political parties to furnish receipts of amounts received and details of identity of donors in a sealed cover to the Election Commission. Also Read – Uddhav bats for ‘Sena CM’ In an interim order, the apex court also directed all political parties to provide details of the amount of the bond and bank account of donors by May 30 to the poll panel. “Supreme Court demolishes stance taken by Modi, Jaitley & BJP – which had pushed this as a Money bill, for opaque, secret Electoral bonds. The court says transparency is the basic principle of electoral funding. People have a right to know which party got how much, and from whom,” Yechury tweeted. Also Read – Farooq demands unconditional release of all detainees in J&K The Centre and the Election Commission had taken contrary stands in the Supreme Court on Wednesday over political funding, with the government wanting to maintain anonymity of donors of electoral bonds and the poll panel batting for revealing names of donors for transparency. “Anonymity pushed by BJP is on the way out. Donors of black money via this route will be scared to fund from here on. Today EC has the data. Tomorrow the public will also have it,” Yechury wrote on Twitter.last_img read more

Uniteds foundations at risk unless Ole Solskjaer rids club of weeds


first_imgLondon: Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said prior to the humiliating 4-0 thrashing by Everton there would not be wholesale changes to Manchester United personnel in the close season, but Gary Neville, for one, believes he should think again. United’s millionaire stars such as Paul Pogba and David de Gea put up a display described by the British press on Monday as “abject”, “an apology” for a performance, with the team derided as being generally “rudderless” and “spineless”. However, whilst it came five years to the day when a 2-0 defeat by the same opponents cost David Moyes his job, it is not Solskjaer who is being targeted but the under-performing Pogba and his team-mates. The World Cup-winning midfielder, after a series of encouraging performances when Solskjaer first assumed the reins in December, has returned to being the non-existent presence so often the focus of Jose Mourinho’s ire — although it was the Portuguese coach who was sacrificed. His and Nemanja Matic’s failure to shore up midfield has been a contributing factor to United’s miserable run of six defeats in their last eight games and five successive away losses — their worst run on the road since 1981. Seldom can a Manchester derby — they host title-chasing City on Wednesday — have been less eagerly anticipated by United fans. Neville, United to the core and an integral member of Alex Ferguson’s side that accrued eight Premier League crowns and two Champions League trophies, was excoriating in his criticism of the players. “If you’ve got weeds in the garden, you’ve got to get rid of them,” said Neville, who has become a respected pundit for Sky Sports. “There’s some Japanese knotweed at that football club and it’s attacking the foundations of the house. It needs dealing with properly. “I don’t need to name names, you know who they are.” Former England international midfielder Jermaine Jenas, who has also turned to punditry since hanging up his boots, turned on the players as well.The 36-year-old said such is the negativity in the team that even the younger talents have been sucked into the vortex of supine performances. “They showed no heart, no desire and no will to win. They were woeful,” Jenas wrote in his column for the BBC website. “Everyone was guilty. “Even Marcus Rashford, who has got one of the best attitudes of anyone at the club, got sucked in by what I would describe as a vacuum of negativity.” United fans may be wondering if the board jumped the gun in giving Solskjaer the job on a permanent basis — as the subsequent results appear to be reflective more of his unsuccessful stint in charge of Cardiff. Indeed, just as his and the team’s fortunes have dipped, the man who was seen as his major rival for the job has seen his stock rise. Mauricio Pochettino’s star has sparkled again thanks to Tottenham’s epic win over Manchester City in the Champions League. But Neville has been slow to criticise his former team-mate Solskjaer. The man dubbed ‘Red Nev’ after he led a players’ strike with England due to their anger over Rio Ferdinand being dropped because of a missed drugs test, took to the barricades when another unloved former United boss, Louis van Gaal, criticised Solskjaer a few weeks ago. Van Gaal said Solskjaer was like Mourinho in parking the bus and relying on the counter-attack, only he was more popular because the results were going in his favour.last_img read more

Longest cyclone in Bay of Bengal


first_imgCyclone Fani was the longest-lived cyclone in the Bay of Bengal ever observed. The elongated time period of the storm went on for 11 days in the sea and land put together. What made it even more surprising was the fact that it had formed in the pre-monsoon season, that too in April. We had started observing it as soon as it formed in the equatorial Indian Ocean as a low-pressure area. At first, we were tracking it with the help of imagery from Indian Space Research Organisation’s (ISRO) SCATSAT-1 satellite, which gave us its exact location once every day. It also informed us on the direction and intensity of winds close to the ocean surface. Also Read – Hijacking Bapu’s legacyThis information was fed into two of our ocean-atmospheric coupled simulation models which then forecast the prospective track and intensification of the cyclone. When our simulation confirmed that the storm is becoming severe, we alerted all the state authorities like disaster management officials and also the Union Ministry of Home Affairs. When the storm transformed into a cyclone we started directly alerting the district administration, which then started provisioning and storing essential supplies. Also Read – The future is here!Our doppler weather radar at Chennai was the first to image half of the cyclone which gave us more information about its various parameters and then once it came further the radar at Machilipatnam was able to see the entire cyclone for the first time. Our forecasts became better after this. Throughout the life cycle of the cyclone, five doppler radars at Chennai, Machilipatnam, Paradip, Gopalpur, and Kolkata kept a watch on the cyclone at one time or the other. This happened for the very first time and helped us with the frequently changing track of the cyclone. By April 30, 2019, we were clear about the fact that the cyclone will move towards Odisha and make landfall. This information was sent to the authorities on the ground through bulletins every three hours, emails and WhatsApp groups. Different sets of officials have different WhatsApp groups and the alerts are sent to all these groups. Just 24 hours before landfall the bulletins were issued every hour until the actual landfall.(The author is the Director General of Meteorology, India Meteorological Department)last_img read more

Two mountaineers from Bengal on Kanchenjunga expedition feared dead


first_imgKolkata: Two mountaineers from the state on Kanchenjunga expedition — Kuntal Karar and Biplab Baidya — are believed to be dead as the rescue operation to bring them back to the base camp proved futile.The Sherpa team, which was on the rescue job of the two injured Indian climbers Biplab and Kuntal, has returned to Camp-4 of Kanchenjunga, as reported from the base camp. The herculean rescue operation, performed by Sherpa Nirmal Purja and his team on Wednesday, yielded no positive outcome. Also Read – Bengal family worships Muslim girl as Goddess Durga in Kumari PujaUnesh Zirpe, the leader of the expedition team Giripremi from Base Camp, said: “There is almost no hope that any further rescue operation is possible to bring Biplab and Kuntal back to Camp-4 at this stage.” The handling agency has also made it clear that there is almost no possibility that any further rescue effort can save these two lives. Ramesh Ray, another climber from the same team, was rescued by the Sherpas and brought to Camp-4 around 10 pm on Wednesday. His health is on the verge of critical deterioration and he was suffering from altitude sickness leading to HAPE (high altitude pulmonary edema) and snow blindness. Climber Rudraprasad Halder, who was at Camp-4 on Thursday morning, was also suffering from frostbite. Later in the day, both of them were evacuated by rescue helicopter and brought at the base camp. Also Read – Bengal civic volunteer dies in road mishap on national highway”They are undergoing treatment at the base camp but arrangements are being made to hospitalise them as quick as possible considering their deteriorating health condition,” said Ujjal Roy, a member of the advisory committee of the state Youth Affairs department. Biplab, Kuntal, Ramesh, Rudraprasad and Sk Sahabuddin were part of a five-member team from Bengal, who had embarked on the Kanchenjunga expedition. Four of them — Rudraprasad Halder, Ramesh Ray, Sk Sahabuddin and Biplab Baidya — had reportedly reached the summit point on Wednesday morning. However, Biplab and Kuntal fell sick while descending and sought help from an altitude above 8000m. It was believed that Kuntal was suffering from HAPE. One team member (possibly Rudraprasad) sent an SOS to their family around 3:12 pm on Wednesday via GPS device asking for urgent help. The device read an elevation of 8271m. Nirmal Purja with two other Sherpas — Gesman Tamang and Mingma David Sherpa — responded promptly to the request assuring a rescue operation from an altitude of 8200m. The sherpas were on their way down from the summit of Kanchenjunga.last_img read more

Hazard is confident Chelsea will beat City again


first_imgEden Hazard believes Chelsea can do a double over Manchester City next week, after their surprise win over the reigning Champions in December.Chelsea responded in an emphatic manner by beating Huddersfield 5-0 at Stamford Bridge after their 4-0 drubbing to Eddie Howe’s Bournemouth.Hazard bagged a brace in the tie, while new signing Higuain equally shared in the delight with a double.Full-time: Chelsea 5-0 Huddersfield!Two apiece for @G_Higuain and @hazardeden10, and a @DavidLuiz_4 header get the Blues back on track. 💪#CHEHUD pic.twitter.com/nzdb4gweNS— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) February 2, 2019With a trip to the Etihad Stadium coming up next Sunday, Hazard is optimistic the Blues would once again shock City as they aim to cement their place in the top four.“It’s going to be a different game than two or three months ago,” Hazard disclosed via the Daily Mail.“I think they will have the ball. City have this kind of players to play together.“We will defend well and then we will score one goal or two.”WolverhamptonMatch Preview: Wolverhampton vs Chelsea Boro Tanchev – September 13, 2019 Wolverhampton will host Chelsea at the Molineux Stadium in one of the most interesting Premier League games this weekend.The City match is the first of a difficult run, which includes the February 24 Carabao Cup final against the same opponents.And Hazard called for focus as they brace up to face United, Malmo, and Spurs in a congested February.“We need to be focused,” Hazard said.“This month is going to be hard, but we are Chelsea. We can beat everyone if we want.”⚽️⚽️ Double trouble! ⚽️⚽️ pic.twitter.com/4LJpIbtvjV— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) February 2, 2019On-loan Juventus striker Higuain and Hazard teamed up for the first time at Bournemouth, but there was far greater optimism following the win over Huddersfield.And manager Sarri was excited how the partnership has blossomed thus far.Hazard added: “He’s a great striker. He’s a bit less of a target man than (Olivier) Giroud, but he can hold the ball, he can play one touches. He’s intelligent.“In the box he’s unbelievable. He will score more goals.”last_img read more