GRANT WAIT SHOULDN’T AFFECT STUDENTS – TD

first_imgAs Donegal students prepare this week for college registration, Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Children Charlie McConalogue has said third level institutions must not to make the process of registration difficult for students who are still awaiting approval for their maintenance grants.Deputy McConalogue explained, “This time of year can be difficult for families budgeting for the academic year.  It’s particularly bad for third level students this year after the Government’s decided to increase registration fees from €1,500 last year to €2,000 this year.“I want to remind students who are registering for their course in the coming days that their third level institution has been required by the Higher Education Authority (HEA) not to block the registration of those awaiting confirmation of approval for maintenance grants or to require them to pay the fee up front while they are waiting on their grant to be processed. “I am aware that last year, many third level institutions put pressure on students whose grant applications were delayed to pay registration fees up front or else deferred their full registration until such time as they could produce evidence letters of approval. This meant that many families were struggling to pull together the money for the registration fee while waiting for their grant application to be processed and in other cases students not being able to register fully until their grant came through.“Up to half of all students who applied for a maintenance grant this year are still waiting for their applications to be processed. But the HEA has directed all third level institutions to facilitate such students and not to delay the registration of those who inform them that they have not yet received their grant approval. Any student who finds that they are not being allowed to register or are being pressured to come up with the registration fee while awaiting grant approval should make it clear to their institution should contact the HEA.“The HEA has also requested all third level institutions to accommodate students who don’t qualify for a grant and may need the option of paying in instalments in order to meet the cost of the registration fees. Students who might need such a facility should ask their college about this.“The start of a college year can be stressful financially and it is not acceptable that any third level institution would add to the pressures on students and their families by not following the directions they have received from the HEA in this regard,” concluded Deputy McConalogue. GRANT WAIT SHOULDN’T AFFECT STUDENTS – TD was last modified: September 12th, 2011 by BrendaShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Sheffield Wednesday boss wants Joey Barton – report

first_imgJoey Barton is wanted by Sheffield Wednesday boss Dave Jones, according to The People.It has been suggested that QPR are looking to send Barton on loan to the Championship, where the volume of games early in the season means his 12-match ban would be served quicker.Barton, it is claimed, has already had offers from Blackburn and Nottingham Forest, with Jones now having thrown his hat into the ring.Cardiff City are set to reject an offer from Fulham for Peter Whittingham, according to The Sun on Sunday, while West Ham striker Carlton Cole has been linked with a move to Craven Cottage.It is claimed Fulham will offer £2.5m for Bluebirds midfielder Whittingham, who scored 13 goals last season.The Sunday Express say Fulham want Fraser Fyvie, 19, who has turned down a new deal at Aberdeen, while The Sun suggest the Whites are one of several clubs interested in Burnley striker Charlie Austin.There is continued speculation about Clint Dempsey’s future, with the Daily Star on Sunday reporting that Liverpool’s American owners have sanctioned an £8m bid to buy him from Fulham.The People, however, suggest the Anfield club’s offer is unlikely to be more than £6m.Striker Andy Carroll has been linked with a move to west London as part of a possible deal for Dempsey.The former Newcastle man is also wanted by West Ham, and The People say Fulham will move for Cole if the Hammers get Carroll.This page is regularly updated. Follow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebooklast_img read more

Things in Space that Shouldn’t Be

first_imgA history of astronomy and a history of surprise discoveries in space would track pretty well.  Recent stories show that the trend continues even today.Wet moon:  The moon was thought to be depleted of volatiles – until now.  According to PhysOrg, “Researchers discover water on the moon is widespread, similar to Earth’s.”  Shouldn’t all this have been known since the Apollo astronauts brought back rocks from the moon?  Well, researchers at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville have re-analyzed some samples and are “once again turning what scientists thought they knew about the moon on its head,” the article exclaimed.    They don’t mean they found lakes and oceans there (despite the Latin root for Mare, ocean).  Instead, they detected molecular water elements or “lunar dew” in apatite similar to amounts in Earth basalts.  Their paper, published in Nature,1 said, “Here we report quantitative ion microprobe measurements of late-stage apatite from lunar basalt 14053 that document concentrations of H, Cl and S that are indistinguishable from apatites in common terrestrial igneous rocks.”    What does this mean?  “One possible implication,” the abstract stated, “is that portions of the lunar mantle or crust are more volatile-rich than previously thought.”  And if volatiles are rich, the leading theory for the moon’s formation becomes poor.  PhysOrg explained:The finding of volatiles on the moon has deep implications for how it, and the Earth, formed.  It is generally believed that the moon was created when the early Earth was hit by a Mars-sized proto-planet called Theia, melting and vaporizing itself and a large chunk of the Earth.  The cloud of particles created by the impact later congealed to form the moon, which supposedly was devoid of highly volatile elements such as hydrogen and chlorine.  However, the researchers’ discovery of these volatiles challenges this theory.    “If water in the Moon was residue water kept during the giant impact, it is surprising that water survived the impact at all because less volatile elements, such as sodium and potassium, are strongly depleted.  The details of the impact theory need to be re-examined,’ [Yang] Liu [U Tennessee] said.Theia appears poised to join Nemesis in the arsenal of imaginary terrorists (see 07/21/2010).Mercurial sleeper awakes:  “Every time we’ve encountered Mercury, we’ve discovered new phenomena.”  That’s PhysOrg quoting says MESSENGER principal investigator Sean Solomon [Carnegie Institution].  “We’re learning that Mercury is an extremely dynamic planet, and it has been so throughout its history.”    That’s a very different picture than a few years ago, when Mercury was supposed to be a dead world, long ago frozen into silence.  Solomon was remarking about Mercury’s young volcanism, magnetic substorms and ionic emissions from its thin atmosphere, discovered during two previous flybys.  The spacecraft will go into orbit around Mercury next March: “we’ll be in for a terrific show,” remarked Solomon.    See the pictures on BBC News about the youngest volcano found on Mercury so far.  Science Daily surveyed the most surprising finds, and National Geographic News focused on huge “curious” power surges detected in the planet’s atmosphere.  “There’re some things here we clearly do not understand,” said one scientist.Quakers in space:  Ever heard of spacequakes?  Those are impacts of plasma blobs from the sun on the Earth’s magnetic field.  Big ones can push the field all the way down to Earth’s surface, Space.com said, then they bounce like a tennis ball with decreasing amplitude.  The THEMIS spacecraft “discovered something new and surprising” in this “long suspected” phenomenon, the article said: “The surprise is plasma vortices, huge whirls of magnetized gas as wide as Earth itself, spinning on the verge of the quaking magnetic field.”    There are other quakers that have been discovered in space, too.  “Spacequakes aren’t the only unearthly temblors around,” Space.com said.  “Scientists have also discovered starquakes (violent trembling inside stars), moonquakes and asteroid quakes (seismic tremors on the surface of the moon and asteroids, respectively).”  Whole lot of shaking going on out there.Rings and hexagons:  Scientists from the Cassini mission orbiting Saturn shared a 6th anniversary CHARM teleconference this week (Cassini-Huygens Analysis and Results from the Mission).  Two Powerpoint presentations about the rings and atmosphere are available for download in PDF form (audio files may be posted later on).  An account of the number of surprises and phenomena not understood in the 100+ slides is left as an exercise; as teasers, they admitted that the B-ring edge is more dynamic and complex than can be understood (ditto for the F-ring), the rings may be much younger than Saturn, and the hexagon-shaped cloud pattern at Saturn’s north pole can only partially be modeled in the lab (audio is needed for full discussion).Super star:  According to theory, stars can only grow to about 150 times the mass of the sun, partly because they would burn out too quickly to be seen, partly because the winds would tear them apart, and partly because there is not enough gas and dust in most locales to gravitationally contract into a star much bigger than 150 solar masses.    Doubters, behold R136a1: a blue giant almost twice the theoretical size limit.  It is currently 265 times the sun’s mass, but astronomers estimate at birth it was a whopping 320 solar masses.  And talk about sunburn: its luminosity has been estimated at 10 million times brighter than our sun.  The BBC News said its radius is 30 times greater than our sun.  A diagram on National Geographic News illustrates the size difference.    Science Daily described the puzzle of this star: “Understanding how high mass stars form is puzzling enough, due to their very short lives and powerful winds, so that the identification of such extreme cases as R136a1 raises the challenge to theorists still further.”  Was it born big, or did it collect smaller stars into its household?  Astronomers were “really taken aback” by the discovery, National Geographic said, adding: “The discovery could rewrite the laws of stellar physics, since it’s long been thought that stars beyond a certain mass would be too unstable to survive.”The big burst:  Gamma ray bursts have been known since 1967, but an “extraordinary” one detected on June 21 was off the charts.  National Geographic News said that “Until now, scientists thought the brightest gamma-ray bursts sent out a maximum of 10,000 x-ray photons a second.”  Here’s the measured flux from this one: “145,000 photons a second… making this gamma-ray burst 10 to 15 times brighter than anything previously seen by Swift’s x-ray telescope.  It was so bright it “blinded” the Swift orbiting space telescope temporarily, saturating its detectors: the “rush of light from a minute-long gamma-ray burst proved so overwhelming that Swift’s data processing software temporarily shut down.”    Swift normally catches light from about two gamma ray bursts per week.  Space.com said this super-bright one is stirring theories: “Just when we were beginning to think that we had seen everything that gamma-ray bursts could throw at us, this burst came along to challenge our assumptions about how powerful their X-ray emissions can be,” said Neil Gehrels, principal investigator for Swift.    A new mission named Xenia is being planned to watch for these cosmic beacons.  “The newfound burst, he said, means that Xenia mission designers will have to go back to the drawing board to make sure the probe will be able to handle the brightest flashes the universe can dish out.”  And speaking of explosions, Science Daily reported earlier this month that among the best-understood ones, Type 1a supernovae, the “Origin of Key Cosmic Explosions [Is] Still a Mystery.”There’s no indication that the number of surprising discoveries will decrease over the next few years.  Quite the contrary; an article on PhysOrg about early results from the Herschel Space Observatory with its SPIRE camera quoted Ian Smail of Durham University, who analyzes results from the mission: “It is already clear that we live in a changing Universe and, thanks to Herschel and SPIRE, few things are changing faster than our perception of it.”    Looking back over 400 years of astronomy since Galileo and Kepler, Joseph Burns of Cornell University surveyed the many surprising discoveries made in space, especially in the last 5 decades of the space program: the Van Allen belts; Venus’s young surface; old, cold moons that proved surprisingly active; old, cold comets that showed evidence of hot formation; asteroids thought to be hard rock that turn out to be rubble piles; remarkable dynamism in Saturn’s rings; chaotic motions of moons; and more.  “Few scientists envisaged that the neighbouring worlds explored by space missions would be so diverse, nor how entrancing many are.”  Publishing his account in Nature,2 (see also summary on Space.com), using the word “surprising” a number of times, he quoted a character from Tom Stoppard’s novel Arcadia in his conclusion talking about scientific revolutions: “It’s the best possible time to be alive, when almost everything you thought you knew is wrong.”1.  Boyce, Liu et al, “Lunar apatite with terrestrial volatile abundances,” Nature 466, pp 466�469, 2 July 2010, doi:10.1038/nature09274.2.  Joseph Burns, “The four hundred years of planetary science since Galileo and Kepler,” Nature 466, pp 575�584, 29 July 2010, doi:10.1038/nature09215.If some scientists want to celebrate their ignorance, some of us will be happy to supply the conical hats and party blowers.  To Joe’s list we can add many more surprises that, within the living memory of many of us, hit the astronomers broadside: quasars, pulsars, blazars, gamma-ray bursts, the cosmic microwave background radiation (partly predicted, but not to the expected values; see 06/12/2008), mature galaxies at the farthest distances (04/02/2009), gravitational lenses (partly predicted), silence from SETI, transient lunar phenomena, Io’s volcanoes, the Enceladus geysers, the inhospitable surfaces of Venus and Mars (civilizations were expected there into the 1960s), Ganymede’s magnetic field, the Kuiper belt, minor planets beyond Pluto, the lack of organics and carbonates (and life) on Mars, the tilted magnetic fields of Uranus and Neptune, the rings of Jupiter and Uranus and Neptune, the F-ring of Saturn, the geysers of Triton, binary asteroids… where could we stop?  It’s hard to find any object in space that closely matched what astronomers expected.  While we share the thrill of surprising discoveries with the astronomers, we should not treat them as prophets.  They have a lot of whiz at math (01/08/2010) and access to great equipment (12/08/2009), but are as fallible as the rest of us – though occasionally, the luck of discovery comes to the prepared minds.    Astronomy proceeds along two tracks: the theory track, and the data track.  Physicists at chalkboards derive equations that predict what might be found or try to explain what is found (03/28/2010, 01/20/2010, 01/13/2010).  Observational astronomers gather the raw data with telescopes.  Sometimes these tracks intersect.  Sometimes one precedes the other.  One might expect that observation would lead theory, trying to make sense of new observations.  Often, though, theory leads to discoveries.  Theory can even determine what observations get made, and what an astronomer “sees” with the senses – as when today’s astronomers pursue their mad quest (08/03/2009) for dark matter (02/28/2008) and dark energy (07/17/2010, 10/08/2009).  If the observations in the past 5 decades have been surprising, the theories have been even more so (06/30/2008): inflation (02/24/2009, 04/18/2008), black holes with universes inside them (04/10/2010), parallel universes, and the multiverse (02/22/2010, 12/05/2008).  While one would hope observations would constrain theory (08/26/2009), some of the latest theoretical speculations seem like acts of desperation to maintain beliefs in spite of the observations (03/19/2010, 10/28/2009, 09/28/2009, 11/17/2008; cf. 10/29/2007).    We’re all together for the ride on our planetary spaceship.  We have been given a phenomenal platform for scientific discovery (watch The Privileged Planet on YouTube).  Fallible as we all are, it should not be surprising to be surprised by what we find, as we peer farther into the unknown with better instruments.  What is surprising is for any of us to grant prophetic powers (both in terms of prediction and understanding) to a class of fellow mortals (06/23/2009, 10/16/2008), just because they label themselves scientists (03/10/2010, 01/15/2008).  The spirits of the prophets are subject to the prophets.  As new data comes rolling in from Kepler, MESSENGER, Herschel, Planck and future missions, let’s keep the marketplace open and a lively place for debate and critical thinking.(Visited 19 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

SA surf star third Down Under

first_img Men Women1. Malia Manuel (Haw) 5 5802. Alessa Quizon (Haw) 5 2803. Carissa Moore (Haw) 3 5004. Nage Melamed (Haw) 3 1205. Maud Le Car (Fra) 3 000 SAinfo reporter 42. Beyrick de Vries 1 00551. David van Zyl 85581. Dale Staples 61089. Michael February 53693. Slade Prestwich 500155. Dylan Lightfoot 190 7. Bianca Buitendag 2 46016. Sarah Baum 1 57062. Faye Zoetmulder 433center_img 24 February 2014 South African surfing star Bianca Buitendag employed her trademark vertical backhand manoeuvres to clinch third place in the Hunter Ports Women’s Classic, a six-star rated ASP Qualifying Series (QS) event in Newcastle, Australia, on Sunday. Buitendag was in sparkling form, winning three of the four heats she contested on her way to the semi-finals before bowing out to Hawaii’s Alessa Quizon by 11.83 vs. 14.50. The 20-year-old from George collected 2 080 points, which moved her up to seventh place on the ASP Women’s QS rankings after three events.Ideal preparation The confidence-boosting performance was ideal preparation for Buitendag’s campaign on the 2014 Samsung Galaxy ASP Women’s World Championship Tour (WCT), which gets underway at the Roxy Pro Gold Coast in Queensland on 1 March. In 2013 she finished her inaugural year on the WCT, the highest level of professional surfing, ranked eighth and was crowned the Rookie of the Year. The Hunter Ports Women’s Classic was won by Malia Manuel who defeated fellow Hawaiian Alessa Quizon in the final. South Africa’s Sarah Baum finished equal 13th and Faye Zoetmulder ended equal 67th.Burton Toyota Pro The Burton Toyota Pro, a six-star ASP QS men’s event, which ran in conjunction with the women’s event as part of the 2014 Surfest Newcastle Australia, was won by Matt Banting who beat fellow Australian Nathan Hedge in the final. Beyrick de Vries and David van Zyl were the highest placed South Africans in equal 17th place, earning 625 points each. Slade Prestwich ended equal 49th, Dale Staples and Dylan Lightfoot were equal 73rd, and Michael February placed equal 97th. Lightfoot also reached the quarter-finals of the Hunter Business Boardriders Pro Junior, finishing equal 13th overall.ASP Qualifying Series Rankings 1. Adriano De Souza (Bra) 6 5642. Matt Banting (Aus) 3 7293. Nathan Hedge (Aus) 3 4704. Tomas Hermes (Bra) 3 0005. Charles Martin (Glp) 2 716 South Africans South Africanslast_img read more

Des Moines Water Works legal battle comes to an end

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest A federal district court has dismissed the controversial Des Moines Water Works lawsuit that put the agricultural community on edge for the past two years. While the decision is favorable for agriculture, it doesn’t resolve the question of whether the water utility could prove that nitrates draining from farm fields are harming the utility’s water sources. The court’s dismissal prevents Des Moines Water Works from further asserting such claims.The lawsuit by the Des Moines Water Works (DMWW) utility sued irrigation districts in three Iowa counties for allowing discharges of nitrates through drainage infrastructure and into the waterways from which the utility drew its water. In addition to claiming that the discharges violate the federal Clean Water Act’s permitting requirements, DMWW also asserted nuisance, trespassing, negligence, takings without compensation, and due process and equal protection claims under Iowa law. The utility sought monetary damages for the cost of removing nitrates from its water as well as an injunction ordering the drainage districts to stop the discharges with proper permits.The federal district court first certified several questions of state law to the Iowa Supreme Court to clarify whether Iowa law provided immunity to the drainage districts for DMWW’s claims. On January 27, 2017, the Iowa Supreme Court responded in the positive, explaining that Iowa drainage districts had been immune from damages and injunctive relief claims for over a century because drainage districts “have a limited, targeted role—to facilitate the drainage of farmland in order to make it more productive.” The Iowa court also clarified that Iowa’s Constitution did not provide a basis for DMWW’s constitutional arguments.Turning to the party’s claims in light of the Iowa Supreme Court’s ruling, the federal district court focused on the drainage district’s motion to dismiss DMWW’s claims based on the doctrine of redressability, which requires a showing that the alleged injury is likely to be redressed by a favorable decision. The doctrine of redressability concludes that a plaintiff cannot have standing to sue and therefore cannot proceed in a case if the defendant doesn’t have the power to redress or remedy the injury even if the court granted the requested relief.The drainage districts argued that they could not redress DMWW’s Clean Water Act claims because the districts had no power to regulate the nitrates flowing through the drainage systems. The court agreed, stating that “DMWW seeks injunctive relief and the assessment of civil penalties against the drainage districts arising from alleged duties and powers that the districts simply do not possess under Iowa law. DMWW may well have suffered an injury, but the drainage districts lack the ability to redress that injury.”The federal district court also dismissed DMWW’s remaining claims against the drainage districts. DMWW argued that the immunity given the drainage districts as described by the Iowa Supreme Court prevented DMWW’s remaining claims and thus violated the U.S. Constitution’s Equal Protection, Due Process, and Takings Clauses. The federal district court found these contentions to be “entirely devoid of merit” and dismissed the state law claims of nuisance, trespassing, negligence, takings, due process and equal protection. Because none of the counts against the drainage districts survived the court’s scrutiny, the court dismissed and closed the case.The DMWW case was a futile but somewhat inventive attempt to allocate liability for nitrate pollution to the agricultural community.“Unregulated agricultural discharges into Iowa’s rivers, lakes and streams continue to increase costs to our customers and damage Iowa’s water quality and environment,” said DMWW’s CEO Bill Stowe upon filing the lawsuit.A public poll by the Des Moines Register soon after Stowe brought the DMWW lawsuit showed that 42% of the respondents agreed with him in believing that farmers should pay for nitrate removal from DMWW’s waters, while 32% thought those who lived in Des Moines should pay to remove the nitrates.If the goal is to force agriculture to reduce nutrient run off or pay for the cost of removing nutrients from waterways, the DMWW case tells us that suing those who oversee agricultural drainage infrastructure projects is not the proper mechanism for accomplishing that goal. So will the next strategy be to sue the farmers who use the nutrients and the drainage infrastructure?One challenge in suing farmers for nutrient runoff, and the issue that was not addressed in DMWW, is whether nutrient runoff from farm fields carried through drainage systems constitutes a “point source” that requires regulation under the Clean Water Act, or whether nutrient runoff fits within the agricultural exemption under the Clean Water Act. That law defines a “point source” as “any discernible, confined and discrete conveyance, including but not limited to any pipe, ditch, channel, tunnel, conduit, well, discrete fissure, container, rolling stock, concentrated animal feeding operation, or vessel or other floating craft, from which pollutants are or may be discharged,” but states that point sources do not include “agricultural storm water discharges and return flows from irrigated agriculture.” What we still don’t know after two years of DMWW litigation is whether a court would put the transport of agricultural nutrients through drainage systems in the point source definition or would consider it an agricultural exemption from the point source definition.A second challenge in an attempt to bring agricultural nutrients under the Clean Water Act is the burden of proof upon the plaintiff to prove the actual origin of a downstream nutrient—who applied the nutrient that ended up downstream? DMWW sought to minimize this challenge by suing the drainage districts that oversee the entire region. But had the case proceeded, DMWW still would have had to trace the nutrients to the region, a difficult task.The agricultural community expects that its voluntary efforts to reduce nitrate and phosphorus runoff from farm fields will positively impact water quality and stem the possibility of more litigation like the DMWW case. A multitude of voluntary efforts are underway, such as Iowa’s Nutrient Reduction Strategy and the flourish of cover crops in the Western Lake Erie Basin. Ohio has also added a regulatory approach that requires farmers to engage in fertilizer application training. Let’s hope these initiatives will reduce nutrient impacts before another party is willing to point its finger at agriculture and pursue a lawsuit like DMWW.last_img read more

The Army’s Net Zero Energy Mission

first_imgOn August 1, the U.S. Army public affairs office in Hawaii published a feature story about the service’s new conservation initiative, which is aimed at preserving natural resources and making energy efficiency key to strategies for housing construction and improvements in transportation and general operations.“One thing that I admire about the Army is that we are full of extremely creative individuals,” Katherine Hammack, assistant secretary of the Army for installations, energy and environment, told the press officer at U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii last month.In many cases, the Army will rely on the ingenuity and know-how of its soldiers to develop and deploy conservation strategies, although some of the more complex and large-scale energy saving initiatives will involve military and civilian experts. Among the most high-profile of these will be the U.S. Military Academy at West Point “Net Zero Installation” project – a series of facility upgrades that will include the installation of renewable-energy systems, advanced lighting and power monitoring systems, barracks upgrades, a biomass system, and the construction of a new barracks to net-zero-energy performance standards.An airtightness requirementArmy standards for airtightness, as adopted a few years ago by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, are already very high for both renovations and new construction. The Army Corps’ HVAC commissioning procedures include air-barrier testing that show building envelope leakage rates of no more than 0.25 cubic feet per minute per square foot of building envelope, when tested at 75 Pascals. This is no small challenge. As noted in “Controlling Air Leakage in Tall Buildings,” an article published in 2009 by the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers, the Army is getting a lot of practice at identifying potential air-barrier deficiencies in building shells at the “pre-design” stage of a project, which allows the design-build team to address the issues and meet the leakage-rate requirement in a timely and cost-effective way.The need is thereIt won’t be cheap, but it is a good time to act because many of the barracks at the fortress-like academy are overcrowded, and the campus, perched high above the west bank of the Hudson River, near Highland Falls, New York, is exposed to extreme weather during the winter. Construction of the new barracks – the first built on the campus since 1972 – is scheduled to begin in 2013, and will cost about $131 million.Initial investment in West Point’s barracks project is coming from energy-saving specialist Noresco, which so far has awarded the school $25 million in Energy Savings Performance Contracts (ESPCs) – partnerships between energy service companies and federal agencies. Supervised through the Department of Energy’s Federal Energy Management Program, the partnerships allow energy service companies such as Noresco to conduct comprehensive energy audits for a federal facility, identify improvements to save energy, design and construct a project that meets the agency’s needs, and arrange the necessary funding.One advantage to ESPCs, the DOE notes, is that they allow federal agencies to move forward on energy saving projects without committing large amounts of their own capital upfront, and without special congressional appropriations. The energy service company’s obligations are extensive, however, since it must guarantee that the improvements will generate enough energy cost savings to pay for the project over the term of the partnership contract. Contract terms up to 25 years are allowed, and additional cost savings after the contract ends accrue to the federal agency.last_img read more

9 months agoFC Andorra coach Gabri: Ownership won’t hurt Pique’s Barcelona form

first_imgFC Andorra coach Gabri: Ownership won’t hurt Pique’s Barcelona formby Paul Vegas9 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveFC Andorra coach Gabri Garcia insists Barcelona defender Gerard Pique’s form won’t be influenced by his club ownership.Pique quickly moved for the former Barca coach to take charge of Andorra after buying the club.”I do not think it will affect his play, Gerard is a person who handles a lot of things and this is just another one,” said Gabri. “Of course, it is not only he who is in this project, since there are more people behind him, he delegates to fully prepared people. “Gerard has never been off centre and this time he will not either.” About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img

4 days agoCrystal Palace planning swoop for Chelsea striker Giroud

first_imgTagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Crystal Palace planning swoop for Chelsea striker Giroudby Paul Vegas4 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveCrystal Palace are planning an ambitious January swoop for Chelsea striker Olivier Giroud.Palace have had to make do with Christian Benteke and Jordan Ayew leading the line this season, and are desperate to add a more prolific front-man to their ranks.Giroud is unsettled at Chelsea, and The Sun says Palace are keen to make the most of his uncertain future and move for his services in January.The Eagles have a good relationship with Chelsea, having previously loaned some of their players – Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Michy Batshuayi are two recent, successful examples – and the south Londoners hope they can get another over the line. last_img read more

Synagogues in four cities receive antiSemitic hate mail

first_imgTORONTO – At least eight synagogues in four cities across Canada have received anti-Semitic letters calling for the death of Jews, B’nai Brith Canada said.Four synagogues in Toronto, two in Montreal, one in Hamilton and one in Edmonton have reported being sent the hate mail, the Jewish advocacy group said Tuesday.A photo on B’nai Brith Canada’s website shows the letter containing the words “Jewry must perish,” and a swastika scrawled onto a blood-soaked Star of David.“It’s really unfortunate that, at this time of year, with the Jewish community celebrating Hanukkah … you have a message of targeted hate that’s going out to religious institutions across the country,” B’nai Brith Canada CEO Michael Mostyn said. “It’s sad to see and it’s actually quite terrifying for the individuals opening these letters with hateful genocidal messages.”Police in all four cities confirmed they were investigating the letters.Officers are “absolutely” treating the incidents as hate crimes, said Staff Sgt. Frank Partridge of 32 Division in north Toronto, where one of the targeted synagogues is located.“This is something that’s happening in real time — today, yesterday — it’s happening in (other cities) so there’s a linkage there,” Partridge said.“Starting tomorrow, I’m having my officers go out and pay special attention to the synagogues and other Jewish facilities… You’ve got to be proactive about this.”There were 1,728 anti-Semitic incidents reported throughout the country in 2016, according to B’nai Brith’s statistics. That’s a 26 per cent increase from 2015 and the highest number of incidents ever seen by the organization, which has been tracking anti-Semitism for 35 years.B’nai Brith does not yet have anti-Semitism statistics for 2017.Police across the country received more reports of hate crimes against Jews, than they did any other religious, ethnic or racial group in 2016, according to Statistics Canada data.“Unfortunately some (people) feel emboldened at this moment in history to express hate toward identifiable groups and Jews in particular,” Mostyn said, pointing to the high-profile neo-Nazi rallies in Charlottesville, Va., earlier this year, and a series of anti-Semitic posters put up on university campuses in Canada.Note to readers: This is a corrected story. A previous version erroneously said that Statistics Canada data from 2015 on hate crimes was the most recent.last_img read more