Archive for August, 2015

Sunday, October 7, 2012 

A Norwegian University of Science and Technology study released Thursday found electric vehicles have a potential for higher eco-toxicity and greenhouse impact than conventional cars. The study includes an examination of the electric car’s life cycle as a whole rather than a study of the electric car’s environmental impact during the use phase.

The researchers conducted a comparison of the environmental impact of electric cars in view of different ratios of green-to-fuel electricity energy sources. In the case of mostly coal- or oil-based electricity supply, electric cars are disadvantageous compared to classic diesel cars with the greenhouse effect impact being up to two times larger.

The researchers found that in Europe, electric cars pose a “10% to 24% decrease in global warming potential (GWP) relative to conventional diesel or gasoline vehicles”.

The researchers suggest to improve eco-friendliness of electric vehicles by “reducing vehicle production supply chain impacts and promoting clean electricity sources in decision making regarding electricity infrastructure” and using the electric cars for a longer time, so that the use phase plays a more important role in the electric vehicle life cycle.

Sunday, October 7, 2012 

A Norwegian University of Science and Technology study released Thursday found electric vehicles have a potential for higher eco-toxicity and greenhouse impact than conventional cars. The study includes an examination of the electric car’s life cycle as a whole rather than a study of the electric car’s environmental impact during the use phase.

The researchers conducted a comparison of the environmental impact of electric cars in view of different ratios of green-to-fuel electricity energy sources. In the case of mostly coal- or oil-based electricity supply, electric cars are disadvantageous compared to classic diesel cars with the greenhouse effect impact being up to two times larger.

The researchers found that in Europe, electric cars pose a “10% to 24% decrease in global warming potential (GWP) relative to conventional diesel or gasoline vehicles”.

The researchers suggest to improve eco-friendliness of electric vehicles by “reducing vehicle production supply chain impacts and promoting clean electricity sources in decision making regarding electricity infrastructure” and using the electric cars for a longer time, so that the use phase plays a more important role in the electric vehicle life cycle.

Sunday, October 7, 2012 

A Norwegian University of Science and Technology study released Thursday found electric vehicles have a potential for higher eco-toxicity and greenhouse impact than conventional cars. The study includes an examination of the electric car’s life cycle as a whole rather than a study of the electric car’s environmental impact during the use phase.

The researchers conducted a comparison of the environmental impact of electric cars in view of different ratios of green-to-fuel electricity energy sources. In the case of mostly coal- or oil-based electricity supply, electric cars are disadvantageous compared to classic diesel cars with the greenhouse effect impact being up to two times larger.

The researchers found that in Europe, electric cars pose a “10% to 24% decrease in global warming potential (GWP) relative to conventional diesel or gasoline vehicles”.

The researchers suggest to improve eco-friendliness of electric vehicles by “reducing vehicle production supply chain impacts and promoting clean electricity sources in decision making regarding electricity infrastructure” and using the electric cars for a longer time, so that the use phase plays a more important role in the electric vehicle life cycle.

29
Aug

What Happened To The Mohave County Downwinders?

   Posted by:    in Law

What Happened To The Mohave County Downwinders?

by

Laura J. Taylor

I always get a bit frustrated when I hear that the reason Mohave County was excluded from the Radiation Exposure Compensation Program (also known as the Downwinder program) was because of a “spelling error”. My response to that is always the same: Hogwash!! And I heard it again, just recently when Mike Watkiss from Channel 3 in Phoenix reported that the reason hundreds, if not thousands, of Mohave County residents were excluded from being compensated by the government was because the drafter of the 2000 Amendments mistakenly confused Mohave County (in Arizona) with Mojave County (in California), and decided not to include any part of the county for compensation. However, a quick look at the amendments that were made to the RECA in 2000 and 2002 totally discounts this theory.

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The Radiation Exposure Compensation Act was passed into law in 1990. The original version of the Act did not include any county in Arizona. On July 10, 2000, the RECA Amendments of 2000 expanded the geographical areas covered under the program to include an additional five counties in Arizona: Yavapai, Coconino, Apache, Gila and Navajo.

Then, on November 2, 2002, President Bush signed the Justice Department’s FY2002 Authorization bill, which included several revisions to the program. One of the revisions re-inserted a portion of Mohave County, Arizona (located north of the Grand Canyon) that was inadvertently eliminated when RECA was amended in 2000. Re-inserted a portion of Mohave County? Yes, you read that correctly. There was a mistake made in 2000 when the amendments went into effect, but it was not a spelling error. Rather, a “portion” of Mohave County was completely eliminated from the amendments, and that “portion” was the northern-most part of Mohave County, commonly referred to as the Arizona Strip. The rest of Mohave County was not included, nor was it ever supposed to be included in the 2000 amendments.

And to put to rest another rumor that has been circulating in Mohave County, Dianne Spellberg, an attorney who works with the Department of Justice, never confirmed in a letter to the Mayor of Kingman that the mistake was a “spelling error” as some have indicated recently. There has never been an admission by anyone at the Department of Justice that the mistake was anything other than what it was – the Arizona Strip wasn’t included when it should have been.

So why wasn’t the rest of the county added to the program in either 2000 or 2002? If a finger needs to be pointed at anyone, I would point to the elected representatives serving Arizona at the time. Senator Orrin Hatch from Utah originally introduced the bill in 1999. Senate Bill 1515 (S.1515) had six co-sponsors with Senator Hatch, including Senators Tom Daschle and Tim Johnson, both from South Dakota, Senators Jeff Bingaman and Pete Domineci, both from New Mexico, Senator Paul Wellstone from Minnesota and Senator Ben Nighthorse Campbell from Colorado. The original text of S.1515 is still available online and nowhere within that text is any mention of any portion of Mohave County, north or south.

What is missing? Well, it does not take a rocket scientist – or a nuclear physicist – to figure out that if no one from Arizona is advocating for a change to the program, then there isn’t going to be change. While it is admirable that Congressman Franks from Arizona has finally decided to introduce a bill to the House (after years of pressure put on him by the Mohave County Downwinders), if the bill gets buried in the Judiciary Committee, then the rest of Mohave County will continue to be left out in the cold. And Senator John McCain has hopped on the Mohave County Downwinder bandwagon as well, with his recent submission of legislation in the Senate that duplicates the efforts of Trent Franks.

Change is necessary, and the forgotten Mohave County Downwinders deserve to be compensated.

Laura J. Taylor, Law Offices of Laura J. Taylor, 100 East Union, Prescott, AZ, 86303, 928-776-2457, www.downwindersprogram.com

Article Source:

What Happened To The Mohave County Downwinders?

29
Aug

Italy will give Libya US$5 billion as compensation for occupation

   Posted by:    in Uncategorized

Sunday, August 31, 2008 

The government of Italy has agreed to pay Libya US$5 billion as compensation for its occupation of the country from 1911 to 1943. The agreement was reached between the Italian Prime Minister, Silvio Berlusconi, and Baghdadi Mahmudi, Berlusconi’s Libyan counterpart.

“It is a material and emotional recognition of the mistakes that our country has done to yours during the colonial era,” said Berlusconi after arriving in Libya. “This agreement opens the path to further cooperation.”

“The accord will provide for $200 million a year over the next 25 years through investments in infrastructure projects in Libya,” Berlusconi continued. “It is my duty, as a head of government, to express to you in the name of the Italian people our regret and apologies for the deep wounds that we have caused you.”

In return for providing compensation, Italy has asked that Libya attempts to reduce the number of immigrants illegally moving from Libya to Italy.

As a result of the deal, the Libyan government has named August 30 “Libyan-Italian Friendship Day”.

The deal has also made some people ask if the United Kingdom should provide compensation to Nigeria for it’s colonisation of the country.

Dr. Eyimofe Atake from the Senior Advocate of Nigeria commented on this issue: “To be able to answer that question, one needs to know exactly why compensation was paid and the circumstances in which compensation was paid. One needs to know the fact of the case between the Italians and the Libyans and how the issue for the payment of compensation arose. No two cases are necessarily similar, so in the absence of the facts and circumstances that led to the payment of compensation, it will be totally speculative to say if Nigeria could ask for compensation or be paid compensation by Britain.”

“In any event, under international law, Britain and Italy are separate and distinct states. They are sovereign states. Consequently, the British government is not bound by the acts of the Italian government. The decision of the Italian government is personal to them based on their peculiar circumstance and facts, which have nothing to do with the British government and the Nigerian government,” Atake continued.

29
Aug

Female lawyers to be granted court access in Saudi Arabia

   Posted by:    in Uncategorized

Tuesday, February 23, 2010 

Female lawyers in Saudi Arabia may soon be granted limited court access for the first time. Mohammed al-Issa, the justice minister, said that the law was part of King Abdullah’s ongoing reform to Saudi Arabia’s judicial system. The law would allow female lawyers to represent other women at family-related cases, including marriage, divorce, and child custody.

Saudi women that are educated in law are currently permitted to work in the female section of government and court offices. Positions of higher authority are reserved for the opposite sex. The Saudi government is also building specialized “personal status” or family courts where female lawyers will be permitted to practice.

Women rights are strictly defined by Islamic Sharia law in Saudi Arabia. Employment and educational opportunities are dependent on a system of male guardianship. For example, a female under the age of 45 must gain the approval of a male before traveling.

According to the BBC, the law and other minor changes are steps in the direction of easing restrictions placed on Saudi women.

28
Aug

Canadian woman faces 234 counts of double-doctoring

   Posted by:    in Uncategorized

Wednesday, August 24, 2005 

Brampton, Ontario woman Wendy Grant, 41, is facing 234 charges of double-doctoring after obtaining prescriptions for 6000 pills. The Ontario Provincial Police also charged her with fraud charge after allegedly obtaining false prescriptions for a narcotic, that were fraudulently billed to the Ontario Drug Benefits Plan.

From February to May, Grant obtained pills from 28 doctors and 22 pharmacies in Peel and Halton regions.

The Workers’ Compensation Board of Nova Scotia defines “double doctoring” “as a situation where a [person] seeks or obtains a prescription for a controlled drug or narcotic from more than one doctor to treat the same condition for the same period of time.”

Submitted by: Weihua

Recently, Xuan Yuan Convention and Exhibition Center, Zhengzhou City, the Office of warm starlight shining success, it carries the dream of the glittering T platform and the opening music to create a magnificent visual feast, the highly anticipated “Zhengzhou 27 Cup” China’s first pants Design Competition Finals held here.

It is reported that competition received a total of 815 copies of manuscripts, of which 17% came from the major brands of designer apparel, 83% from the Beijing Institute of Clothing, Tsinghua Academy of Fine Arts, the Hong Kong Institute of Fashion Design, Henan Institute of Technology, Shaanxi University of Science and Technology 40 a fashion design students of the institutions. The same time, participants from China, including Beijing, Shanghai, Henan, Guangdong, Inner Mongolia, 25 provinces and autonomous regions, the Macao Special Administrative Region, as well as far away as Italy and France. Participants in the age of 90 after the new generation of small to large seventies year.

During the lengthy selection process a few months later, 20 after 80 after 90 emerging designers who come to the fore with 100 entries unveiled the final T Taiwan, they used the dance of the youth and the trend of the entire creative Cultivars T Taiwan, they used the Drawing a beautiful works of interpretation of the wind out of “my youth, I call the shots,” they use their own understanding and interpretation of fashion to conquer the entire site.

After the final for the works of this competition the judges were given a high level of evaluation and positive, particularly to Russia, a judge told reporters that she was in this competition a lot of very good to see the effect of map than in Europe designer’s even better, especially the players a source of inspiration and creative thinking, so that she appreciated very much. The well-known Chinese designer Yang Liu also emotion told reporters that China’s new generation 80 after the designer creativity, so that they can surprise and delight, while allowing them to see the costume designer in the world, China’s future development prospects.

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Competition Jury Chairman, Vice Chairman of China Fashion Designers Association, Professor Li Dangqi to give a high evaluation of this competition, said: “From the works of these young designers, I see the market point of view than the design. Their design very bold and innovative. At the same time I am very pleased to see such a contest held in China, the first pants contest is a very professional competition. “

As organizer of this competition, one of the Er Qiqu People’s Government to create a “27 cities in China pants” brand invested a total Capital 200 million on organizing the first Chinese pants contest, while the establishment of high bonuses to reward the rich both made their mark China Garment Design Competition of the best single product. Gold is set to 10 million, among the winners to enjoy the special preferential policies to attract talent in Zhengzhou city, will also free to use at China’s Zhengzhou Er Qiqu clothing (pants) Fashion Creative Industrial Park provides 100 square meters of the design studio .

To this end Chinese Communist Party Secretary Zhu Erqi West said: “The holding of this competition on the one hand want to Zhengzhou Er Qiqu trousers industry in a very good local publicity to promote local trousers industry. On the other hand wants to give young design training teachers to provide a platform to the market and enterprises to provide some new design strength. “

The Er Qiqu hosted by the “Zhengzhou 27 Cup” China’s first pants Design Competition is a scientific concept of development under the leadership of Er Qiqu gradually decentralized processing industry cluster to shift from a low-end processing to Marketing and brand building high-end type of leap. Through the costume design, brand promotion, marketing, and cultural packages fashionable pants the first to carry the Chinese flag to change the garment industry in the central region the proportion of the domestic industry to enhance the national industry in Zhengzhou, Henan, the right to speak of the weight.

At present, the Erqi area has grown to nearly a thousand garment enterprises, which accounted for 80% of the pants over business enterprises, clothing output has more than 80 million sets (pieces), annual output value of 3.0 billion, directly engaged in garment industry workers nearly 10 million people, nurturing a dream Shuya, Xing Yi Lu, the new Silk Road, Nuremberg and other front-line more than 70 well-known domestic brand pants. Competition from the China National Garment Association, the Zhengzhou city government organized. Awarded in September last year, “China’s pants city” title Er Qiqu, but also won the design competition of China’s pants the host city of the next five years.

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25
Aug

NTSB releases updates on status of 3 major US investigations

   Posted by:    in Uncategorized

Sunday, June 17, 2007 

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), the agency responsible for investigating transportation accidents in the United States, released updates on three major investigations on June 14.

The NTSB, well known publicly for its involvement in the investigation of aviation incidents which involve harm or loss of human life, is also an agency that oversees the transportation of refined petroleum and gas products, chemicals and minerals.

The agency determined the cause of a natural gas pipeline explosion that killed six. It also detailed the cause of an accidental release of 204,000 gallons of anhydrous ammonia from a pipeline in an environmentally sensitive area, and released preliminary information involving two commercial aircraft coming within 30-50 feet of each other on a runway.

In the gas explosion disaster, the towing vessel Miss Megan, which was of specifications that did not require inspection by the United States Coast Guard, was being operated in the West Cote Blanche Bay oil field in Louisiana by Central Boat Rentals on behalf of Athena Construction on October 12, 2006. The Miss Megan was pushing barge IBR 234, which was tied along the starboard side of barge Athena 106, en route to a pile-driving location. Athena Construction did not require its crews to pin mooring spuds (vertical steel shafts extending through wells in the bottom of the boat and used for mooring) securely in place on its barges and consequently this had not been done. During the journey, the aft spud on the Athena 106 released from its fully raised position. The spud dropped into the water and struck a submerged, high-pressure natural gas pipeline. The resulting gas released ignited and created a fireball that engulfed the towing vessel and both barges. The master of the towing vessel and four barge workers were killed. The Miss Megan deckhand and one barge worker survived. One barge worker is officially listed as missing.

The NTSB blames Athena Construction for the disaster, citing in the final report that Athena Construction’s manual contained no procedures mandating the use of the safety devices on the spud winch except during electrical work. It was found that if the Athena 106 crew had used the steel pins to secure the retracted spuds during their transit, a pin would have prevented the aft spud from accidentally deploying. Furthermore, the spud would have remained locked in its lifted position regardless of whether the winch brake mechanism, the spud’s supporting cable, or a piece of connecting hardware had failed.

The NTSB also found that contributing to the accident was the failure of Central Boat Rentals to require, and the Miss Megan master to ensure, that the barge spuds were securely pinned before getting under way. The Board noted that investigators found no evidence that the Miss Megan master or deckhand checked whether the spuds had been properly secured before the tow began. While Central Boat Rentals had a health and safety manual and trained its crews, the written procedures did not specifically warn masters about the need to secure spuds or other barge equipment before navigating. The NTSB stated that the company’s crew should have been trained to identify potential safety hazards on vessels under their control.

NTSB Chairman Mark Rosenker said of the investigation’s results, “Having more rigorous requirements in place could have prevented this accident from occurring. Not only do these regulations need to be put in place but it is imperative that they are enforced and adhered to.”

The NTSB has made a number of safety recommendations as a result of this accident and the subsequent investigation. Recommendations were made to Athena Construction and Central Boat Rentals to develop procedures and train the employees of its barges to use the securing pins to hold spuds safely in place before transiting from one site to another.

The most major of the other recommendations are:

To the Occupational Safety and Health Administration:

To the U. S. Coast Guard

The NTSB also released the result of its investigation into an environmental disaster in Kansas on October 27, 2004 in which 204,000 gallons (4,858 barrels) of anhydrous ammonia was spilled from a ruptured pipeline in Kingman into an environmentally sensitive area. Chemicals from the pipeline entered a nearby stream and killed more than 25,000 fish, including some fish from threatened species.

The incident reached the scale that it did due to operator error after the initial rupture. The 8 5/8-inch diameter steel pipeline, which was operated by Enterprise Products Operating L.P., burst at 11:15 a.m. in an agricultural area about 6 miles east of Kingman, Kansas. A drop in pipeline pressure, indicating abnormal conditions or a possible compromise in pipeline integrity, set off alarms displayed on the computerized pipeline monitoring system. Shortly after the first alarm the pipeline controller, in an attempt to remedy the low pressure, increased the flow of anhydrous ammonia into the affected section of pipeline. A total of 33 minutes elapsed between the time when the first alarm indicated a problem with the pipeline and the initiation of a shutdown.

In its initial report to the National Response Center (NRC), the pipeline operator’s accident reporting contractor reported a release of at least 20 gallons of ammonia, telling the NRC that an updated estimate of material released would be reported at a later time. No such report was ever made. Because of the inaccurate report, the arrival of representatives from the Environmental Protection Agency was delayed by a full day, affecting the oversight of the environmental damage mitigation efforts.

The cause of the rupture itself was determined to be a pipe gouge created by heavy equipment damage to the pipeline during construction in 1973 or subsequent excavation activity at an unknown time that initiated metal fatigue cracking and led to the eventual rupture of the pipeline.

“We are very fortunate that such highly toxic chemicals of the size and scope involved in this accident were not released in a populated area,” commented Rosenker. “Had this same quantity of ammonia been released near a town or city, the results could have been catastrophic.”

As a result of this accident, the NTSB made the following safety recommendations:

To the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration:

To Enterprise Products Operating L.P.:

“The severity of this release of dangerous chemicals into the community could have been prevented,” said Rosenker. “The safety recommendations that we have made, if acted upon, will reduce the likelihood of this type of accident happening again.”

As well as concluding their investigation of the above accidents, the NTSB also released preliminary information regarding a serious runway incursion at San Francisco International Airport between two commercial aircraft on May 26, 2007.

At about 1:30 p.m. the tower air traffic controller cleared SkyWest Airlines flight 5741, an Embraer 120 arriving from Modesto, California, to land on runway 28R. Forgetting about the arrival airplane, the same controller then cleared Republic Airlines flight 4912, an Embraer 170 departing for Los Angeles, to take off from runway 1L, which intersects runway 28R.

After the SkyWest airliner touched down, the Airport Movement Area Safety System (AMASS) alerted and the air traffic controller transmitted “Hold, Hold, Hold” to the SkyWest flight crew in an attempt to stop the aircraft short of runway 1L. The SkyWest crew applied maximum braking that resulted in the airplane stopping in the middle of runway 1L. As this was occurring, the captain of Republic Airlines flight 4912 took control of the aircraft from the first officer, realized the aircraft was traveling too fast to stop, and initiated an immediate takeoff. According to the crew of SkyWest 5741, the Republic Airlines aircraft overflew theirs by 30 to 50 feet. The Federal Aviation Administration has categorized the incident as an operational error.

The NTSB sent an investigator to San Francisco, who collected radar data, recorded air traffic control communications, and flight crew statements, and interviewed air traffic control personnel prior to the NTSB making the preliminary release.

Sunday, October 7, 2012 

A Norwegian University of Science and Technology study released Thursday found electric vehicles have a potential for higher eco-toxicity and greenhouse impact than conventional cars. The study includes an examination of the electric car’s life cycle as a whole rather than a study of the electric car’s environmental impact during the use phase.

The researchers conducted a comparison of the environmental impact of electric cars in view of different ratios of green-to-fuel electricity energy sources. In the case of mostly coal- or oil-based electricity supply, electric cars are disadvantageous compared to classic diesel cars with the greenhouse effect impact being up to two times larger.

The researchers found that in Europe, electric cars pose a “10% to 24% decrease in global warming potential (GWP) relative to conventional diesel or gasoline vehicles”.

The researchers suggest to improve eco-friendliness of electric vehicles by “reducing vehicle production supply chain impacts and promoting clean electricity sources in decision making regarding electricity infrastructure” and using the electric cars for a longer time, so that the use phase plays a more important role in the electric vehicle life cycle.