Climate change on world stage

first_imgInternational climate talks wrapped up last week in Qatar. Harvard Professor Robert Stavins attended and characterized the gathering as a qualified success, representing another step in a long process of reaching a workable international agreement.Gazette staff writer Al Powell talked with Stavins about the work of international delegates and the prospects for a meaningful agreement going forward.GAZETTE: Can you explain the purpose of these talks?STAVINS: In 1992, at a United Nations conference in Rio de Janeiro, a major outcome was the adoption of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. Among other things, that convention provided for annual conferences at which representatives of countries would get together to discuss and negotiate how to address the threat of climate change. These annual negotiations go by the name of a “Conference of the Parties,” commonly abbreviated as a “COP.” COP-1 took place in Berlin in 1995, and COP-18 just took place in Doha, Qatar, in December 2012.GAZETTE: What is your role at these conferences?STAVINS: My role is typically on behalf of the Harvard Project on Climate Agreements. Our purpose is to help the various national negotiating teams identify modes of international cooperation that will address climate change in ways that are scientifically sound, economically rational, and politically pragmatic.We hold events to which everyone is invited, two events this time. One of the mandates that came out of the Durban conference in December 2012 was for the delegates to think about new ways they can make use of the market to address the threat of climate change. We put together a panel of people to talk about potential “new market mechanisms.” We had a room with a capacity of several hundred, and every seat was taken. People were standing in the aisles, sitting on the floors, and spilling out into the hallway waiting to get in. In other words, interest in our intellectual contributions was at a high level. Importantly, the session was jointly sponsored with the Enel Foundation and the International Emissions Trading Association, which is a trade association of companies interested in emissions trading and related mechanisms.The second event was co-sponsored with the government of the state of Qatar, and looked forward, post-Doha, to the potential paths ahead, with particular focus on the problems of arid countries, a chronic issue for the Middle East. The panel included Fahad Bin Mohammed Al-Attiya, chairman of the Qatar National Food Security Programme, who is one of the key thinkers and leaders on these issues.In addition, we carry out bilateral meetings with negotiating teams and also do press meetings. Typically, we hold a couple dozen such meetings.GAZETTE: How do you feel the conference went?STAVINS: My view is that these international negotiations need to be viewed not as a sprint, in which you win or lose, but as a very long distance relay race, and the Qataris succeeded in handing off the baton.The Qataris invited us to Doha last summer to help them begin to think about what success at the December conference would look like and how they could achieve it. There were three aspects to what we identified in advance as success, and they achieved all three, though maybe not to the degree or in the way that every country in the world would have preferred.GAZETTE: What were those three?STAVINS: First, they successfully brought to a close negotiations on a second commitment of the Kyoto Protocol, that is, extending the protocol beyond its first commitment period, which expires at the end of 2012. The second commitment period is now set. It will run to 2020. Second, they also brought to a successful close negotiations in what was called the Long Term Cooperative Action track, which included a set of issues that were put on the table at COP-13 in Bali in December 2007. Third, they began to make some progress on the one remaining negotiating track, which is the Durban Platform for Enhanced Action. They initiated discussions about establishing, by 2015, a comprehensive new international agreement, for implementation by 2020, that will include all key countries in the world, including the major emerging economies of China, India, Brazil, Korea, South Africa, and Mexico. That itself is a departure from the Kyoto Protocol, which is focused exclusively on a subset of countries of what used to be characterized as the industrialized world.The negotiators from around the world did not make as much progress on the Durban platform as I would have hoped. But at a very minimum they did no harm, and that’s very important. That is, they did not introduce any problematic text into the negotiations that will later cause problems. In general, my view of these annual Conferences of the Parties is similar to the physician’s Hippocratic Oath: Do no harm, and keep things moving ahead.GAZETTE: In looking at news coverage, I read about two emotions, anger and despair, felt by some after the conference. Are those warranted?STAVINS: AOSIS [Alliance of Small Island States] nations are the most extreme in their point of view, for very good reasons, and they were surely disappointed by the outcomes. They’ve been very vocal, again for good reason. But the major emitters, the only ones that can do anything about the problem — the United States, China, the other large economies of the world, among them — there was recognition that in the real world, this is what success looks like.I think of this as if we’re back at Bretton Woods in 1944, when Europe was in shambles. An agreement was reached at Bretton Woods, but it took 50 years to establish the World Trade Organization, and to continue the process of putting the global financial house in order. The problem of global climate change is actually more difficult politically than the economic problems that the world faced after World War II. We have this terrible situation where those who can reduce their emissions now are not the ones who will be damaged by climate change. You’re asking current voters to foot the bill, while it’s the future generation that will benefit from reduced damage. Furthermore, any country taking action will foot the bill for its costs, but the benefits of those actions — reduced climate change — will be spread globally. Hence, for any individual country the direct benefits of action will inevitably be less than the direct costs of action, despite the fact that global benefits may be considerably greater than global costs. That’s the global commons problem, and it creates an incentive for each country to free ride on the actions of others. So politically, it’s an exceptionally challenging problem.GAZETTE: What about the gap between the emissions cuts that were promised and that have been achieved?STAVINS: What became clear to me at the conference is that there is increasing acceptance of three facts from a broad set of delegations. One was that the frequently discussed target of limiting concentrations to 450 parts per million [of  CO2 in the atmosphere], which is equated to approximately 2 degrees centigrade maximum warming, is simply not achievable.Number two, there’s increasing recognition that a bottom-up international policy architecture is probably the future path forward, not a top-down approach. By top down, I mean a highly centralized approach like the Kyoto Protocol, with targets and timetables, as opposed to a bottom-up, pledge-and-review approach in which each country essentially says, “Look, this is what I can do,” and they put all of those into the hopper.The third thing I observed was that there was greatly increased acceptance of the reality that market–based approaches to emissions reduction are absolutely essential. One heard this in the past from economists and from certain countries, but now it is unanimous, except for the small set of Marxist economies that essentially object to the world economic order.GAZETTE: Where does the U.S. stand on that issue?STAVINS: The U.S. has been at the forefront of that approach back to the Clinton administration. What’s interesting is that the official U.S. commitment under this pledge-and-review approach, a 17 percent reduction below 2005 emissions by the year 2020, is very likely to be achieved.The reason is the combination of CO2 regulations which are now in place because of the Supreme Court decision [freeing the EPA to treat CO2 like other pollutants under the Clean Air Act], together with five other regulations or rules on SOX [sulfur compounds], NOX [nitrogen compounds], coal fly ash, particulates, and cooling water withdrawals. All of those will have profound effects on retirement of existing coal-fired electrical generation capacity, investment in new coal, and dispatch of such electricity. Combined with that is California, which Jan. 1, 2013, is putting in place a CO2 cap-and-trade system that is more ambitious in percentage terms than Waxman-Markey was in the U.S. Congress. Add to that the recent economic recession, which reduced emissions. And more important than any of those is what new, unconventional sources of natural gas in the United States have done to the price and price trajectory of natural gas, and the dramatic movement from coal to natural gas for generating electricity.GAZETTE: Are there things that places like Harvard can do?STAVINS: My view is that the best thing that Harvard can do is to carry out first-rate research, combined with the best possible teaching, and effective outreach to the public sector and the private sector. That’s our comparative advantage. In other words, our greatest impacts on the environment, including with regard to global climate change, will be through our products (research findings, smart and capable alumni, and direct impact on the policy world and private industry), not our processes. The emissions reductions that Harvard will achieve as a result of changing our carbon footprint, for example, whether it’s through increased energy efficiency of some buildings or some other means, are absolutely trivial compared with our impacts on the world [through teaching, research, and outreach]. And all of us — students, faculty, and administrators — have only so much time available. A very important concept in economics is “opportunity cost,” and there’s an important opportunity cost of a faculty member’s time, for example. If they’re working on one thing, they can’t be working on something else.GAZETTE: Isn’t there kind of a living-laboratory aspect to what we’re doing?STAVINS: I agree with that. So the one caveat — which I always mention — to what I said would be if direct actions by the University to limit emissions or energy demand were part and parcel of a research initiative or part and parcel of teaching, then those would be part of our core functions.GAZETTE: Does that extend to the conversation on divestment?STAVINS: I guess the way in which it links to that issue is whether or not symbolic actions are of value, but again you have to weigh symbolic actions against truly meaningful actions.GAZETTE: What’s the most important thing for a member of the public to know about the climate talks and about climate change generally?STAVINS: I think the most important thing to understand is that this is a long-term problem. Economically, a cost-effective approach is going to be very gradual reductions in emissions, not sudden changes. We’re not confiscating everyone’s automobiles tomorrow, but putting in place incentives or regulations so that next time they buy an automobile they move in the right direction, one that is less carbon intensive.A massive amount of technology change is going to be required. That’s long term, and the creation of durable international institutions is going to be necessary, and that’s long term. That’s why that cliché we always hear from ballplayers each spring when they’ve lost their first 10 games — that it’s a marathon, not a sprint — applies even more to global climate change policy.People should get neither excited nor depressed, in my view, over one single negotiation. It’s an ongoing process that’s going to be with us for a long time.GAZETTE: Are you confident that ultimately what needs to happen will happen?STAVINS: I’m not sure that it will happen through a centralized, top-down, international agreement. Nor am I even certain that the core of the action will be through international negotiations. Remember, 20 countries and regions account for about 90 percent of emissions. So there are alternative venues where meaningful action can happen without requiring agreement from 195 countries! One way or another, — through national action, bilateral action, multilateral action — things will be addressed. That doesn’t mean they will be addressed without the world first experiencing significant climate change damages.last_img read more

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Telhami explores Arab identity

first_imgIn the latest installment of the “Ten Years Hence” speaker series, which asks speakers to analyze an issue’s effect on business and politics in the next decade, Professor Shibley Telhami from the University of Maryland discussed the shift in Arab identity.The lecture, titled “The World Through Arab Eyes,” took place Friday at the Mendoza College of Business.Telhami said his interest in Arab identity began even before the chain of protests and civil unrest in Middle Eastern countries, including Tunisia, Libya and Egypt.“What got me interested was not so much the uprisings but the discourses that preceeded them,” Telhami said.According to Telhami, the 1978 Camp David Peace Accords were among those critical discourses. More recently, he said he has focused on discourses regarding public opinion in the Middle East.“In all cases I studied, rulers behaved as if public opinion mattered even when they could act against the public through autocratic regimes,” Telhami said.To understand the importance of public opinion in the Arab world, Telhami said he utilized reliable research methods over a broad range of countries.“I set out to have 10 years of public opinion polling in six Arab countries to understand how media habits have changed notions of identity and public opinion in the Arab world,” Telhami said.Telhami said his survey asked citizens of six countries to rank the importance of three identifying traits: their nationality, their religious affiliation and their ethnicity.“Overall, the trend was a decline in affiliation with the state, an increase in identification with Islam and a robust identification with Arab ethnicity,” Telhami said. “In other words, transnational identity overtook national identity.“If one identifies as Arab, one feels affiliated with people from Morocco to Saudi Arabia, and if one identifies as Muslim, one may draw connections with people as far away as Malaysia.”Telhami said the information revolution accounts for much of the change in identity. In particular, he said the Arabic-language media outlet Al Jazeera has provided citizens of Arab countries with news outside state-controlled television and radio stations.“Media from outside the borders of a country places transnational identity at center stage,” he said. “When we asked citizens of Arab countries the question, ‘whom among your leaders do you admire most?’ they not only listed leaders in the Middle East but also included Hugo Chaves of Venezuela and the former French president Jacques Chirac.”Telhami said the information revolution will continue to empower citizens of Arab countries.“In my own opinion public empowerment in the Middle East, far from being episodic, is with us to stay,” Telhami said. “No one can put the genie back in the bottle.”Tags: Ten Years Hencelast_img read more

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ND collaborates with research firm

first_imgThis month, Notre Dame announced the establishment of a joint venture with Feinstein Institute for Medical Research to establish a variety of academic exchanges, including collaborative research, student training and bilateral conferences as a combined effort to further clinical research and lower patient treatment costs, according to Arnie Phifer, external relations director for research of Notre Dame’s Advanced Diagnostics & Therapeutics (AD&T) initiative.Both students and researchers will have access to the combined resources of Notre Dame and Feinstein Institute, including data sets, patient trials and research developments. Early projects will feature research on an infectious condition known as sepsis, Phifer said.“It’s the leading cause of death for people who have infection in the world, and it’s the costliest condition for U.S. hospitals,” he said.Students in particular will see an increase of research opportunities in the coming years, Phifer said.“Notre Dame does a lot of student-involved research — hands-on, direct research in the lab. Any students who are involved in those can go to Feinstein and spend time in their labs,” he said.Notre Dame has invested many resources in medicinal research as part of a group effort that includes numerous biomedical research entities like Feinstein working to eliminate deadly diseases and lower treatment costs, Phifer said. AD&T, a group of Notre Dame scientists, engineers and researchers, was one such investment to that end.“About six to eight months ago, we started a new program that we call precision medicine,” Phifer said. “That program is really focused on tying our work in the lab directly to the problems that physicians and people who actually provide health care have.”Phifer said AD&T spearheaded the University’s cooperation with the Feinstein Institute. He said AD&T director Paul Bohn and Norman Dovichi, both professors of chemistry and biochemistry, first met with Feinstein leaders last spring to discuss prospective collaboration between the two institutions. Both are members of the Cleveland Clinic Healthcare Innovation Alliance, an association of healthcare organizations and individuals that combines clinical and technological research to the benefit of patients, according to a University press release.“This is a years-long process,” Phifer said. “We anticipate that we will get a lot of good work started between the two institutions and that it will last a long time — there’s no end date to it.”Tags: AD&T, biomedical research, Feinstein Institute, Notre Dame, research, sciencelast_img read more

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Salvadoran Navy, U.S. SOUTHCOM Cooperate to Fight Drug Trafficking

first_imgImprovements to a boat ramp in La Union, as well as a new boat maintenance facility — both of which will provide El Salvador with a strategic operating location for the Navy. The Salvadoran Naval Force (FNES), working in cooperation with the U.S. Southern Command (SOUTHCOM), has struck serious blows against maritime drug trafficking during the past year. SOUTHCOM works collaboratively with El Salvador and other partner nations to cut off trafficking routes used by transnational criminal organizations attempting to transport drugs from South America to the U.S. “El Salvador has been able to interrupt maritime smuggling of drugs, striking blows against organized crime along the coastal routes,” he added. “Drug traffickers use our country’s coast as a corridor for transporting large shipments of drugs,” Capt. Merino said. “Our operations have detected maritime drug movements at five miles, 15 miles, and as far as 70 miles off the coast.” El Salvador and the U.S. also cooperate in the fight against drug trafficking through operations conducted by the GCC. Successful missions Jeep J8s, associated spares, and OEM certified training; Such operations are crucial in the fight against narco-trafficking because about 89 percent of the narcotics transported by drug cartels to the U.S. and Canada are sent by sea, Misael Rivas Soriano, security analyst and dean of the School of Law and Social Services at the New University of San Salvador (UNSSA), said. By Dialogo August 25, 2015 I think all the policies they plan to implement in the countries that they are proposing are very good, but the bad thing is that they forget about it really quickly and don’t do anything. I AM VERY GRATEFUL FOR MY PROVINCE I already have one son lost to drugs. It’s too late for me Only God Jehovah will be able to fight the god of drugs Equipment in the form of helmets, ballistic vests, and flotation vests for the Cuscatlán Joint Group (GCC), an inter-agency team whose mission is to combat the transportation of large shipments of narcotics – and FNES From November 2014 to June 30, 2015, the GCC, in collaboration with FNES, the Joint Interagency Task Force-South, and the Salvadoran Drug Enforcement Division’s National Civil Police, have seized approximately 2,000 kilograms of cocaine, the Ministry of Justice and Public Security reported by video on July 1. El Salvador is “a receipt and warehouse point” for drug trafficking organizations, primarily from Colombia and Mexico, he added. From 2009 to 2015, security forces in El Salvador have captured 18,340 suspects linked to drug trafficking, as the fight against the crime requires international cooperation and “must have no borders” Rivas said. Joint Group Cuscatlán also fights drug trafficking Harris communications equipment, associated spares, and OEM certified training The coordination between Salvadoran security forces and the U.S. could be “a message to drug traffickers not to pass through El Salvador,” Rivas added. The FNES has conducted several successful missions to disrupt maritime drug trafficking routes, including the launching of a series of successful operations as part of Operation LIONFISH II, which led to the detection and seizure of drugs between five and 15 miles off the coast in 2014 and included the participation of the U.S., said Captain René Merino, the head of El Salvador’s Naval operations. Among the equipment and support SOUTHCOM has provided: Barracks, an operations center in Comalapa to serve as the GCC’s command and control hub, and a vehicle maintenance facility so El Salvador can maintain and sustain Jeep J8 tactical vehicles As part of a program to build partner nation capacity under the Counter-Narcotics Portfolio, SOUTHCOM provides El Salvador with maritime interdiction support, including equipment, training, and infrastructure, said Antonio Valle, counter-narcotics acquisition regional specialist from SOUTHCOM’s Resources and Assessment Directorate. Drug traffickers pretend to be fishermen to avoid security devices at sea, and use dual outboard motor speed boats to transport narcotics. Vessels carrying large shipments navigate at a distance of between 250-450 nautical miles (460-830 kilometers) from the coast in international waters, which are patrolled with the support of the U.S. Anti-Drug Monitoring Center (CMA), according to the report “Drug trafficking routes,” published by the website El Salvador. 37-foot Boston Whaler Interdiction Boats, associated spares, and Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) certified training SOUTHCOM’s support, which includes providing the FNES with equipment and logistical assistance, “has improved their already-effective drug enforcement tactics,” Salvadoran Minister of Defense David Munguía Payes said in a press interview. Thanks to LIONFISH II, Central American and Caribbean authorities seized more than 27.5 tons of drugs from December 1-12, 2014, with security forces seizing a ton of cocaine in El Salvador specifically. In recent years, the U.S. has provided six Zodiac patrol boats, worth $6 million collectively, to the FNES, which uses the vessels to respond quickly within 12 nautical miles along the country’s coasts and in the Fonseca Gulf. El Salvador and the United States also cooperate in the fight against drug trafficking through Operation MARTILLO, a multinational and multi-agency mission to crack down on illicit drug trafficking routes in coastal waters along the Central American isthmus.last_img read more

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Summer food program expects high demand

first_imgBordeau estimates that currently food programs offered through BOCES serve between 6000 and 7000 children per day. As COVID-19 has put schools, summer camps, and other activities in jeopardy, Bordeau and his team have been prepping. “This summer more than ever our programs are going to be vital,” Bordeau said. Summer camps are closed up for the summer, there’s not going to be Rec Park programs, so we are truly going to be the major food sites for kids to grab free meals throughout both counties.” To meet the high demand, Bordeau said food vendors have reassured him they are stocked properly, and BOCES has even received donations from the USDA and the Food Bank of the Southern Tier. He says before COVID-19, around 63% of students were on a free or reduced meal program.center_img He told 12 News for the first time he can remember, each district within the BOCES region will have a food site for pickup this summer, which is something he says is important now more than ever before. Food sites this summer will be open twice a week, but will have 7 days worth of breakfast and lunch meals. (WBNG) — Senior Director of Food Services at Broome-Tioga BOCES Mark Bordeau is expecting more people to utilize the BOCES food programs this summer.last_img read more

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London 2012: the big questions

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Coronavirus tests clear 167 of possible UAE Tour exposure

first_imgTopics : “Two cases of coronavirus were suspected among two staff members of one of the participating teams,” cycling’s governing body, UCI, said on Friday.The official race hotel in Abu Dhabi was sealed off late on Thursday and health authorities ordered precautionary quarantine and preventive measures for all participants of the UAE Tour.”The health authorities are still monitoring the health condition of the contacts to ensure safety of the community,” the DoH-AD said in a statement late on Friday.The results of the remaining test findings will be available soon, it added.The UAE Tour was just one of many international sports events hit by the coronavirus, with some postponed and others cancelled outright.  Tests on 167 people have proved negative for coronavirus after they were feared to have been exposed to two infected Italian participants of the UAE Tour, Abu Dhabi’s health department (DoH-AD) has said.The rapid spread of coronavirus has raised fears of a pandemic, with eight countries reporting their first cases and the World Health Organization raising its global spread and impact risk alert to “very high”.The final two stages of the UAE Tour, which featured some of the world’s leading riders, was cancelled because two Italian participants testing positive for coronavirus, the Abu Dhabi Sports Council said on Thursday.last_img read more

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BLOG: For A Government That Works, Outside Income Disclosure Should Be Required

first_imgBLOG: For A Government That Works, Outside Income Disclosure Should Be Required Government Reform,  Government That Works,  The Blog,  Transparency Right now, more than ever, we need to build trust in our democratic system. Clearly Americans – and Pennsylvanians – do not trust their government. They are disaffected by what they see. They are not confident that the people who serve them in Harrisburg have their best interests at heart.This is not right. It’s not right for Pennsylvania and it’s not right for our democracy.We need to restore trust in our institutions of government. That’s why Governor Wolf announced a set of government reform initiatives that will give the people of Pennsylvania reason to trust their public servants again.Part of this reform packages includes requiring public officials to disclosure of the amount of compensation from outside employment and to ban paid service on corporate boards.In Pennsylvania, some public officials earn income outside of their duties in public service. Currently, public officials are required to disclose the sources of outside income, but not the amount paid, or any information about the work that was performed. It’s time to makes sure this is more transparent so that we know our public officials have Pennsylvanians best interests at heart.We must work together to ensure all public employees disclose the amount of compensation they receive from outside employment, within specified income bands, and that paid service on corporate boards is prohibited.The overall goal is to ensure that the citizens of Pennsylvania trust the government that exists to serve them. Public officials must serve with integrity. They must promote good policies and serve as faithful stewards of our grand democratic tradition.For more information, see Governor Wolf’s Government that Works Reform Plan: governor.pa.gov/govt-reform April 15, 2016 By: Mark Nicastre, Director of Communicationscenter_img SHARE Email Facebook Twitter Read more posts about government reform.Like Governor Tom Wolf on Facebook: Facebook.com/GovernorWolflast_img read more

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Auctions restrictions relax next weekend, back to normal July 10

first_img First look inside travel king’s incredible house MORE: Huge interest in termite-infested house Double-digit house price falls ahead, says NAB Queensland’s three-step return to work timetable released Friday, May 8, 2020. Picture: QLD Govt.Currently Queensland allows five people into open homes at a time, with auctions being conducted online and via phome bidding as part of social isolation measures to help flatten the coronavirus curve.Queensland Premier Anastacia Palaszczuk announced the “return to work” timeline after Prime Minister Scott Morrison fronted media post Federal Cabinet on Friday.Mr Morrison has handed over the reins to states and territores to decide what works best in their circumstances, though across the country strict social distancing and hygiene measures would still be required in all circumstances. Auctions and open homes moved online during strict social distancing rules.He said “noone is perfect, everyone is doing their best” to get the economy back on track.Brisbane real estate agent Jason Adcock, principal at Adcock Prestige, said the moves were “fantastic, bring it on”.The plan would mean that in nine weeks Queensland auctions would be back to normal with less than 100 people on site – though with coronavirus safety measures in place.“A normal auction in the last two to three years would have been 20 to 30 people, sometimes you get incredible auctions where you get 80 to 100 people but that might be two or three properties a year that are like that.”More from newsCOVID-19 renovation boom: How much Aussies are spending to give their houses a facelift during the pandemic3 days agoWhizzkid buys almost one property a month during COVID-197 days ago Video Player is loading.Play VideoPlayNext playlist itemMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 0:58Loaded: 0%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -0:58 Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedCaptionscaptions settings, opens captions settings dialogcaptions off, selectedQuality Levels720p720pHD432p432p216p216p180p180pAutoA, selectedAudio Tracken (Main), selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.This is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.Close Modal DialogThis is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.PlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 0:00Loaded: 0%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -0:00 Playback Rate1xFullscreenHow much do I need to retire?00:58center_img Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk announced the three step lifting of restrictions plan Friday afternoon.Auctions and open homes will return to normal in Queensland from July 10, with restricted auctions beginning next weekend when 10 people will be allowed on-site at a time, before rising to 20 on June 12 and then 100 four weeks later. Mr Adcock said he had found that the prestige end of the market preferred auctions on site rather than online.“There are a number of agents doing virtual auctions at the moment. The feedback I’m getting from pretsige buyers is they’re fairly uncomfrotable bidding for properties in that environment. If they’re going to bid on a property, they would rather be on site.” “I have shifted my method of sale primarily to expressions of interest with a closing deadline (as a result). ““Feedback from buyers in the $2m, $3m, $4m, $5m bracket is they’re very unvomroable at the moment. It might be different at a lower price level. I haven’t seen too many online mult-million dollar sales.” FOLLOW SOPHIE FOSTER ON FACEBOOKlast_img read more

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Fifteen years of a festival is a great achievement says Colin Piper

first_img Share Chairman of DFC, Mr. Colin Piper. Photo credit: bulletin.arcadia.eduChairman of the Dominica Festivals Committee, Colin Piper during the media launch of the 15th Annual World Creole Music Festival last night, described the launching as a significant day which signals the resolve of the industry amidst challenging financial times.“This is a very significant day as it signals the resolve of and belief in the tourism industry as the engine of growth that we once again look to one of our key festivals under our Tourism calendar of events to play its part in aiding the Dominican economy grow out of the ill effects and impact of the global and financial crisis which is being felt worldwide.”Mr. Piper described the fifteen year old festival as a great achievement, one he does not wish  to be marred by controversy regarding its profitability.“The lowest gate receipt received was $719, 670 in 2000 with the highest gate receipt received being $2, 495, 019.00  in the reunion year of 2008. The lowest total expenditure to stage the festival was about $1.3 million in 1998 and the highest was just above $4.4 million in 2008, again in the reunion year. The festival has been profitable on two occasions in 1998 when it neted just about $16, 000.00 and in 1999 when it neted $500, 000.00” he said.Hurricane Tomas which disrupted the last two nights of the show last year, is credited for having provided a ‘daytime’ experience to the the fourteen year old festival.‘Last year we sold less than one thousand, in fact last year’s total sales were down by about 26% from 2009. But thankfully a larger number of patrons had purchased season tickets and most turned out on Sunday along with nightly ticket holders to support the event. And in doing so we experienced a daytime event at the World Creole Music Festival for the first time in fourteen years.Mr. Piper indicated that the festival assists in stimulating the local economy while at the same time providing an opportunity for clean fun during our Independence celebrations.Dominica Vibes News Sharing is caring! 39 Views   no discussions Tweetcenter_img Share Share EntertainmentLocalNews Fifteen years of a festival is a great achievement says Colin Piper by: – July 15, 2011last_img read more

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