Denmark, Bastion of Wind, ‘Waves Oil Industry Goodbye’

first_imgDenmark, Bastion of Wind, ‘Waves Oil Industry Goodbye’ FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Bloomberg New Energy Finance:In another sign that the petroleum era is drawing to a close, Denmark is selling off its last oil company with barely a peep.Once considered a strategic asset, on a par with national carriers or shipyards, the oil and gas division of A.P. Moller-Maersk A/S is being bought by French giant Total SA. The $7.45 billion deal is expected to be completed by 2018, pending regulatory approval.Coming just three months after the sale of Dong Energy’s North Sea oil and gas production to German-based Ineos AG, Maersk’s move to offload its oil division has been welcomed by the government and trade unions alike. Even the nationalist Danish People’s Party, which supports the government in parliament, didn’t object.The irony is that Denmark will need the income from oil and gas to finance its green transition and meet a pledge to stop using fossil fuels by 2050. That will mean keeping up production from the North Sea fields, which Total has promised to do.“The more money they make on the North Sea, the more money there will be for us to spend on the green transition,’’ Energy Minister Lars Christian Lilleholt said in an interview in Copenhagen.Oil and gas revenue as a percentage of Danish GDP isn’t expected to recover muchThe receipts from North Sea oil used to average about 8 billion kroner ($1.3 billion) per year. That would pay for about 1 gigawatt of new onshore wind capacity, which is sufficient to supply power to some 170,000 homes, based on a recent deal in Norway, according to Bloomberg Intelligence analyst James Evans.Dong, a former state utility whose name is an acronym for Danish Oil and Natural Gas, is using at least some of the money it made from its divestment to build more offshore wind parks, expanding its dominance as the world’s biggest operator of sea-based wind turbines.Denmark, which is also home to Vestas Wind Systems A/S (a company that produces more turbines than any other manufacturer on the planet), now gets more than 40 percent of its electricity needs from renewable sources, according to 2015 data, and aims to reach more than 50 percent by 2020. The country’s green sector already employs about 67,000 people, double the number of workers in its North Sea industry.More: World’s Biggest Wind Turbine Maker Waves Oil Industry Goodbyelast_img read more

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Simple Math & The 50-Mile Footrace

first_imgWhere’s the finish?When I run and have nothing better to do, I often find myself crunching numbers – miles remaining, miles completed as percentage of anticipated total, average pace over last quintile as expressed in meters/second, etc.There’s just a certain allure to it – a sort of puzzle-solving pleasure like that derived from crosswords. Take a nice, round 10-mile run. What is not to enjoy about that magical 0.8 mile that separates the one-quarter mark at 2.5 from the one-third point at 3.3, the latter feeling like a much more significant waypoint in a purely qualitative sort of way? And granted, the true one-third point is actually closer to 0.83 mile beyond the quarter, but by the time you work through the math and figure out that the extra 0.03 mile is, like, not quite 50 meters, you’re already closing in on the 3.5-mile mark. And then it might occur to you that there exists a strange conflation between the English and metric systems in distance running, and just for the hell of it, you might decide to work through that same 0.03 calculation in yards, which is a good bit tougher to work out as you’re trotting down the road, while simultaneously devoting certain baseline mental energies toward monitoring and preparedness functions for oncoming cars, dogs, holes, etc. So when you’ve finally worked it out to 0.03 mile = 52.8 yards, you’re really getting close to mile 4, at which point the halfway mark is just around the bend, and then you’re in the home stretch.Trust me, this is a fantastic way to pass the time while running.And so, as I trained for my first-ever 50-mile race this fall – Virginia’s famous Mountain Masochist Trail Run – I coped with the attending dread and exhilaration in numbers. E.g.: A five-mile jog is a piece of cake, ergo the MMTR is no more than 10 easy little runs strung together. Child’s play. Or, e.g.: Because my 26-mile tune-up on the Wild Oak Trail in October turned into a death march, the MMTR is going to be doubly, unimaginably painful and hateful.Because I’m a glass-half-full type, or maybe just a fool, I zeroed in on scenario #1 during the sleepless night before the race in my Lynchburg hotel. Every little thing will be alright, right?And so here I am, on the Blue Ridge Parkway, surrounded by bobbing headlights in the 6:30 a.m. chill, continually downshifting my pace in the flat and easy early going. Slow, I tell myself. Slower. Long way to go.5k. Cross the James. First hill. Re-cross the river. Orange glow spreads from the east. Aid station #1. My pace is a bit slow, I think, but I have a history of quick starts and spectacular flameouts. Better safe than sorry. And here begins the first extended climb. I run practically the entire thing, keeping count of the people I pass, my confidence high, my pulse even, all systems go.This being the Mountain Masochist, though, there soon comes the next long climb, and yet another, and the next and the next. 10 miles, then 15, then 20, and the simple constraints of endurance and ability make themselves apparent. I can no longer run the entire hills. I transition to Plan B: 100 steps running, 50 steps walking, 100 steps running, 50 steps walking, repeat until hill ends. It is 10:15 by my watch and my thinking feels clouded for the first time. Am I almost four hours in, or five? I rehash the “10 easy runs strung together” mantra. I am somewhere well into Easy Run #4, and it is not feeling so easy. Doubt is now cast on the efficacy of my approach.Heading up Buck Mountain, somewhere past the halfway point, my 100-50 run-walk system goes out the window, replaced by an unstructured and desperate less-running, more-walking technique. And then, few miles later, toiling up (always up, up, up it seems today) to Hog Camp Gap, I adopt my third and final uphill paradigm of the day: walk slowly, while hanging head and cursing.There is a heinous matter of true race distance that begins to factor in now. The MMTR, they say, with wink and nod, is a 50-mile race. Maybe “a bit long,” the race director might admit. Maybe more like 52. Or 54, even, according to someone’s Garmin last year. The true seriousness of this fuzzy math becomes apparent somewhere around mile 30. Do I have 20 miles left, or do I have 24? For someone who parses numbers down to hundredths of a mile, this is a nasty, nasty little problem to deal with, and its nastiness has a strong positive correlation with fatigue.Somewhere on Pompey Mountain, c. mile 38, as I’m starting to get truly pissed about the fact that I have 12, or maybe 16, miles left, I realize that something bad is at work in the gastric tract. It occurs to me that I haven’t peed for hours, though I’ve been drinking plenty. I am feeling very, very thirsty, though my stomach feels and sounds extremely full. Worrisome. I glance at my watch. My pace over the last couple miles is unspeakable, off-the-charts slow. Very worrisome. And thus commences a series of throw-in-the-towel calculations: number of miles left divided by number of hours until 6:30 p.m. cutoff equals minimum pace required to finish, calculated for both best- and worst-case scenarios re: variance in distance potentially remaining. Because 4 miles amounts to about an hour at this pitiful point, my margins of error are both enormous and depressing, and I guess this is what I’ll look back on as a low point.I notice a bunch of runners are passing me. According to my projections, I think I’ll probably stagger in by dusk, but I’m in uncharted waters now. I’ve never run this far before, and I don’t know what will happen. And besides, I’m not sure I really trust my math at this point.And then, relief, in the form of the therapeutic puke, a messy little episode that raises numerical considerations of its own: the astounding apparent volume of my stomach, the rate of flow at which the torrent of sports beverage-colored liquid speeds down the trail, the number of witnesses (this happened in the immediate vicinity of an aid station) looking on with revulsion and worry, and so forth. I wipe my chin. I feel a lot better, though that’s not saying much, and I head on down the trail. I will later learn that this whole full-belly problem probably had something to do with electrolyte imbalance. Rookie mistake.I spend some miles beside an incredibly cheerful runner whose encouragement means more to me than he will probably ever realize, and whom I do not have the energy to properly thank. I fall back, and now am beside another friendly stranger. I am unable to compute figures any longer, I am uninterested in computing. I am running on the last wisps of fumes, hobbling along in his wake, unable to pick my feet up above the leaves that carpet the trail, relying on blind luck to avoid roots, rocks and other mishaps.On and on, and endlessly on. Stomach is still unhappy. Legs and feet in vicious revolt. Volunteers at last aid station crack jokes about piggyback rides that were probably funny but just seem cruel. Mental wherewithal on the verge of abandoning me entirely. Tears seem to be forming in my eyes, and still, curve after curve, more trail ahead.And then, serendipity, the last corner, the finish comes in view, I hear my wife whooping encouragement, I sense clapping in my vicinity, I think someone official-looking might be shaking my hand, and now I am lying in the sweet green grass, twitching like a fish, confronted with the day’s final set of figures – 9:28:05, 34th place, and, most satisfying, the number of 50(?)-mile finishes now under my belt: 1.last_img read more

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Beer Blog: Getting Stoned in Virginia

first_imgStone Brewing Co. has been eyeballing Virginia for the home of its new East Coast brewery since Spring.The California-based brewery, known for its wild IPAs and inventive collaboration brews, has narrowed the site of their expansion down to Richmond or Norfolk, but Columbus, Ohio, is also in the running. Stone has yet to pull the trigger. One thing Virginia has going in its favor, is no ABV limit. Stone wouldn’t be allowed to brew any of their high gravity beers under Ohio’s 12% abv cap. Also, Ohio is nowhere near the mountains or beach. Who would want to open a business so far from skiing or surfing?Anyway, Stone is sure to announce the “winning” city soon, and construction of the $60 million brewery/restaurant/garden will begin. I think it’s best to stay optimistic and assume Stone will find a new home in Virginia. In that vein, we should all make the effort to get to know our new neighbors.Like I said, Stone is known for its IPAs, and actually has a series of fresh IPAs that are meant to be enjoyed within days of being brewed. They’re tough to find on this side of the country, because of the short shelf life, they’re pulled from stores after the Enjoy By date passes. In fact, that series of beers is called “Enjoy By.” They’re awesome: Juicy, dank, hoppy—exactly what a fresh IPA is supposed to be. The current Enjoy By IPA is set to expire on Sept. 20. Get one if you can.If you can’t find Enjoy By, find an Arrogant Bastard. This is Stone’s flagship beer, a strong ale that lives up to its name. It’s aggressively hoppy, with a zesty bite that lingers after the sip, but you’ll also find a sugary sweetness that keeps it all in balance. Arrogant Bastard has a respectable 7.2% abv, but be careful—it comes in 22-ounce bombers, and that abv adds up by the end of the bottle. I’m working on a big bomber right now, and I see my afternoon productivity slipping away from me with every sip.But it’s too good to put down. Arrogant bastard.last_img read more

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U.S. Coast Guard interdicts cocaine in Caribbean

first_imgBy Dialogo May 02, 2013 The seized contraband was transferred to U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency agents. “Working with our interagency and international partners, we detained three suspected smugglers and prevented 2,200 pounds of cocaine with a value of $27 million from reaching our streets,” said Rear Adm. William D. Baumgartner, Seventh Coast Guard District commander. While conducting a law enforcement patrol April 18, the crew of the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Gallatin located a 68-foot fishing vessel in the western Caribbean Sea. The crew of the Cutter Gallatin boarded the vessel, located 2,200 pounds of cocaine, and detained three suspected smugglers. Crewmembers from the Coast Guard Cutter Bernard C. Webber offloaded 2,200 pounds of cocaine at Coast Guard Base Miami Beach, Fla., on April 26. The cocaine was seized during Operation Martillo. The contraband, suspected smugglers and fishing vessel were later transferred to crewmembers aboard the cutter Bernard C. Webber. The three suspects and fishing vessel are scheduled to be transferred to FBI agents in Miami. last_img read more

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Suffolk Dems Maintain Legislative Majority

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York Suffolk Democratic Chairman Rich Schaffer addresses supporters in Hauppauge on Tuesday, Nov. 5, 2013.Suffolk County Democrats lost one key seat in their legislative majority but made up for it by unseating a renegade member who didn’t caucus with the party and recapturing another open seat.The unofficial election results of Tuesday’s election appear to ensure that Steve Bellone, in his sophomore year as Suffolk County executive, can still rely on the chamber led by Democratic allies despite the slight turnover.“We’ve done a lot in two years,” Bellone told a crowd of several hundred cheering supporters at the IBEW Local 25 Hall in Hauppauge. “But you haven’t seen anything yet!”The two biggest legislative upsets came when Republican Kevin McCaffrey, a Lindenhurst village trustee, won the seat held by outgoing temporary Presiding Officer Wayne Horsley (D-Babylon) and when political newcomer Monica Martinez unseated fellow Democrat Legis. Rick Montano (D-Central Islip).“Right now the county executive has a veto-proof majority in there and people don’t like that,” McCaffrey told the Press at the Suffolk GOP gathering in Patchogue. “They want to be able to have some sort of balance in the legislature.”There were a few nail-biters, including when Legis. Sarah Anker (D-Mt. Sinai) narrowly fended off GOP challenger Jennifer Juengst 52 to 48 percent, the same margin that William Lindsay Jr., son of the late presiding officer, beat Republican Anthony Musumeci.But, the political makeup of the 18-member body will mostly remain the same as Republican Robert Trotta won the seat held by term-limited Legis. Lynne Nowick (R-St. James), keeping it away from Democrat Elaine Turley.Democratic incumbents who held off Republicans include freshman Legis. Al Krupski (D-Cutchogue), Legis. Kara Hahn (D-Setauket), Legis. Robert Calarco (D-Patchogue), Legis. Dr. William Spencer (D-Centerport), Legis. Lou D’Amaro (D-Huntington Station) and Majority Leader DuWayne Gregory (D-Amityville). Legis. Steve Stern (D-Dix Hills) ran unopposed.Republican lawmakers who resisted Democrats include Legis. Tom Muatore (R-Ronkonkoma) and Minority Leader John M. Kennedy Jr. (R-Nesconset). Legis. Tom Cilmi (R-East Islip) and Legis. Tom Barraga (R-West Islip) were both uncontested.Third-party incumbents Legis. Kate Browning (WF-Shirley) and Legis. Jay Schneiderman (I-Montauk) were also re-elected.Suffolk Democratic Chairman Rich Schaffer, who was re-elected Babylon Town Supervisor, credited the wins to Lindsay’s father, who died this summer.“We miss him dearly…he’s left us too soon,” Schaffer said. “But I know today he is with us. He is here and he is smiling down because the one thing he told me…was ‘Rich, don’t screw up Billy’s campaign.’”last_img read more

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HR Answers: Credit unions transition to a new way to work

first_imgLast month, credit unions around the country, along with other businesses of all types and sizes, found themselves suddenly faced with a crisis that would upend “business as usual” and impact staff, members and communities.The coronavoris or, more specifically, COVID-19, had impacted people in all 50 states by the end of March, and had resulted in a myriad of state, county and local stay in place and stay at home orders. While some locations (such as New York and Louisiana) have been impacted more dramatically than others, literally no community has gone unscathed. As the media carried daily reports of new diagnoses, and deaths, and federal and state government agencies scrambled to make critical, and highly sensitive decisions to protect both public health and the economy, credit unions quickly emerged as one of a number of “essential businesses” meaning that they could stay open to serve member needs but also, in some cases, requiring employees to continue to report to work. Others were able to leverage prior experience with remote work and online services. All remained focus on member—and staff—needs.Transitioning to a New Way of WorkingWednesday, March 18 was the final day that $4 billion Corporate America Credit Union, Irondale, Alabama, had staff physically in its offices serving members. “It was a hard decision,” says Pete Pritts, president/CEO. Information had been changing rapidly, he says, but in hindsight, he says, “I believe it turned out to be the right decision.” ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr continue reading »last_img read more

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Village of Hancock officials alert residents of lead contamination in water

first_imgVillage officials say they have increased the amount of zinc orthophostate in the village water system to help slow the pace of corrosion and therefore lower the levels of lead. The heightened levels of lead are due to corrosion, the village believes. Hancock officials say they are concerned about their residents’ health. The following statement has been to sent to 12 News: The village says the water department has detected two houses with elevated levels of lead in the water during routine testing from June to September 2019.center_img HANCOCK, N.Y. (WBNG) — The Village of Hancock Water Department is alerting residents to elevated levels of lead in drinking water. The village of Hancock is concerned about the health of their residents because lead can cause serious health problems if too much enters your body from drinking water or other sources, especially for pregnant women and children 6 years-old or younger. It can cause damage to the brain and kidneys and can interfere with the production of red blood cells that carry oxygen to parts of your body. Scientists have linked the effects of lead on the brain with lowered IQ in children. Adults with kidney problems and high blood pressure can be affected by low levels of lead more than healthy adults. Lead is stored in the bones and it can be released later in life. During pregnancy, the child receives lead from the mother’s bones which may affect brain development. They recommend running your water for 15 to 30 seconds to help flush out lead and using cold water to prepare baby formula.last_img read more

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Denmark’s ATP can push for central clearing exemption

first_imgDenmark’s largest pension fund, ATP, is allowed to request an exemption from central clearing after the European supervisor gave its consent.The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) issued a note on 3 August relating to Danish regulator Finanstilsynet’s concern that ATP would struggle to post cash as collateral when centrally clearing trades, a requirement introduced under the European Markets Infrastructure Regulation (EMIR).The note went on to relay Finanstilsynet’s concern that requiring ATP to centrally clear trades would increase costs, thereby lowering the statutory pension fund’s investment returns.It said requiring the fund to convert its assets into cash was inefficient. “In view of the above and on the basis of the information provided, ESMA is of the opinion that the reasons why an exemption is justified due to difficulties in meeting variation margin requirements for centrally cleared transactions for [ATP] are valid,” the supervisor’s note continued.It will now be up to Denmark’s regulator to grant an exemption. Unlike several pension providers, such as Germany’s Pensions-Sicherungs-Verein and the UK’s Pension Protection Fund, ATP is not automatically exempt from central clearing but was allowed to apply for exemption.The request for an exemption comes despite ATP’s backing of clearing.It told the European Commission earlier this year it viewed the EMIR proposals for central clearing as a “reasonable initiative”, although it questioned the increasing reliance of central counterparties (CCPs) for such trades.“CCPs should not be required to compensate for lack of financial stability outside the CCP system,” the fund’s submission to the Commission’s review of financial services legislation said, “as this will disproportionately allocate the risk between the financial institutions and potentially lead to unnecessary higher cost that might … undermine CCPs’ original objectives to increase financial stability.”The former financial services commissioner, Jonathan Hill, hinted in May that a proposal to make EMIR’s application to the pension sector “proportionate” was being drawn up by the Commission.Pension funds are exempt from central clearing until 2017, with the UK’s Pension and Lifetime Savings Association calling for an indefinite exemption.last_img read more

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All surrogacy is exploitation – the world should follow Sweden’s ban

first_imgThe Guardian 25 February 2016Family First Comment: Part of a worldwide movement – “This week, Sweden took a firm stand against surrogacy. The governmental inquiry on surrogacy published its conclusions, which the parliament is expected to approve later this year. These include banning all surrogacy, commercial as well as altruistic, and taking steps to prevent citizens from going to clinics abroad.”   That something is not quite right about surrogacy has been evident for some time. Ever since the commercial surrogacy industry kicked off in the late 1970s, it has been awash with scandals, exploitation and abuse. From the infamous “Baby M” case – in which the mother changed her mind and was forced, in tears, to hand over her baby – to the Japanese billionaire who ordered 16 children from different Thai clinics. There has been a total commodification of human life: click; choose race and eye colour; pay, then have your child delivered.Then there’s the recent case of the American surrogate mother who died; or the intended parents who refused to accept a disabled child and tried to get their surrogate to abort; not to mention the baby factories in Asia.This week, Sweden took a firm stand against surrogacy. The governmental inquiry on surrogacy published its conclusions, which the parliament is expected to approve later this year. These include banning all surrogacy, commercial as well as altruistic, and taking steps to prevent citizens from going to clinics abroad.This is a ground-breaking decision, a true step forward for the women’s movement. Initially divided on the issue women came together and placed the issue higher up on the agenda. Earlier in February, feminist and human-rights activists from all over the world met in Paris to sign the charter against surrogacy, and the European Parliament has also called on states to ban it.The major objections to the Swedish report have come from intended fathers, saying that if a woman wants to be a surrogate, surely it is wrong to prevent her from doing so. It is telling that few women cry over this missed opportunity. It is, after all, demand that fuels this industry.To save surrogacy from accusations like this, some resort to talking of so-called “altruistic” surrogacy. If the mother is not being paid, there is no exploitation going on. Maybe she is doing it out of generosity, for a friend, a daughter or a sister.The Swedish inquiry refutes this argument. There is no proof, says the inquiry, that legalising “altruistic” surrogacy would do away with the commercial industry. International experience shows the opposite – citizens of countries such as the US or Britain, where the practice of surrogacy is widespread, tend to dominate among foreign buyers in India and Nepal. The inquiry also says that there is evidence that surrogates still get paid under the table, which is the case in Britain. One cannot, says the inquiry, expect a woman to sign away her rights to a baby she has not even seen nor got to know yet – this in itself denotes undue pressure.In any case, the notion of “altruistic” surrogacy – apart from being a red herring, since it barely happens in reality – has a very strange ideological underpinning. As if exploitation only consisted in giving the woman money. In that case, the less she is paid, the less she is exploited.In reality, “altruistic” surrogacy means that a woman goes through exactly the same thing as in commercial surrogacy, but gets nothing in return. It demands of the woman to carry a child for nine months and then give it away. She has to change her behaviour and risk infertility, a number of pregnancy-related problems, and even death. She is still used as a vessel, even if told she is an angel. The only thing she gets is the halo of altruism, which is a very low price for the effort and can only be attractive in a society where women are valued for how much they sacrifice, not what they achieve.READ MORE: http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/feb/25/surrogacy-sweden-banlast_img read more

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Aurora police arrest suspected armed robber

first_imgAurora police released surveillance photos of a suspect of armed robbery at Marathon Gas Station.AURORA, Ind. – One man is behind bars accused of armed robbery at the Marathon Gas Station in Aurora on Saturday morning.Detectives say the suspect told the clerk he had forgotten his wallet and left the store. A short time later he allegedly reentered the business with a knife demanding money. The man left with approximately $200 in cash and cigarettes, police say.Aurora police released surveillance photos from the store which led to tips from citizens and Crime Stoppers identifying Brian Brown, 31, of Lawrenceburg as the alleged suspect.Brown has been arrested and booked in the Dearborn County Jail on suspicion of robbery while armed with a  deadly weapon, a level 5 felony.Prosecutors say Brown was carrying the knife used in the robbery at the time of arrest.last_img read more

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