Sub-zero temperatures slow down life in Kashmir Valley

first_imgFalling sub-zero temperatures sweept the entire Kashmir Valley on Monday, further slowing down life, especially in Srinagar. With frost-hit vehicles and slippery roads, the city witnessed this winter’s coldest night at minus 6.1 degree Celsius, according to the Meteorological Department.The movement of scores of office-goers was hampered as a layer of frost covered vehicles’ windows. Diesel cars came to a standstill due to icy conditions.“It took me half-an-hour to start my car. All windows were covered with frost,” said Naseer Ahmad, an employee of a private bank.Markets open lateMost government offices in Srinagar have advanced the time of moving in. The impact of the cold wave was also evident in markets, which opened later than usual.Tourists travelling to hill stations like Gulmarg, Pahalgam and Sonamarg, where the minimum temperature hovered between minus eight degree Celsius and minus 11 Celsius, saw their vehicles skidding owing to slippery conditions.An Army spokesman said men and machinery were put into service on Monday after a group of tourists returning from Gulmarg were stuck near the Baba Rishi Y-junction. “A recovery team reached the site and swiftly recovered the stranded vehicle,” he added.Unscheduled electricity cuts across the Valley multiplied the residents’ woes.In KargilIn Kargil, which recorded the State’s lowest temperature at minus 18.5 degree Celsius, piped water has frozen. “We boil ice to make our washrooms functional,” said Nazir Ahmad.“In the next 48 hours, there will be a further dip in temperature because of open skies. This week is likely to be dry and may flip the cold wave,” said a Met official.last_img read more

Indian Super League: Was Waiting for Opportunity to Prove Myself, Says Manvir Singh

first_img fc goaindian super leagueIndian Super League 2019-20isl First Published: November 4, 2019, 5:11 PM IST Panaji: Manvir Singh scored a dramatic late equaliser for FC Goa against NorthEast United FC at the Indira Gandhi Athletic Stadium, Guwahati, after rising from the bench. In the three seasons that he has spent at FC Goa and played in the Indian Super League (ISL), this was only his second goal.Manvir cannot be faulted since most of his appearances have been as a late substitute. Last season he made 19 substitute appearances off the bench, but this season things are looking up for the India striker. The India forward started the first two games against Chennaiyin FC and Bengaluru FC. He seemed to have done well, and even though he was relegated to the bench for the third game, his impact and last-gasp goal would have pleased coach Sergio Lobera.”I gave my best whenever I got the opportunities. I even scored one goal last season and provided one assist. This year I started in the first two matches and both were great. In the third match against NorthEast United (on Friday) I came off the bench and scored the equaliser. I am very happy and I was waiting for such an opportunity to prove myself,” said Manvir.It is no secret that Manvir’s centre-forward play has gone up a notch and he has reaped the rewards of being part of a squad that has a natural goal machine like Ferran Corominas.”It is a big thing for me to play alongside Corominas as he is a very high-profile player. For the past two seasons, he has been the top scorer in the league. His decision making is very good and the touches he takes are excellent. It is a tough competition between me and Corominas and I try to give my best in practice sessions. Rest is up to the coach,” said Manvir.He added: “Sergio Lobera plays a very important role in the club. His training is very good for every Indian player. His with the ball training gives you confidence. He helps us a lot to improve our skills and abilities with his technical knowledge.”When the opportunity presented itself, Manvir grabbed it with both hands and the young forward is pleased with the start to the season that he has had.Against the Highlanders, Manvir did what Coro had done in the previous game. It was a penalty strike in injury time by the Spaniard that helped Goa hold Bengaluru FC last week.”Even against Bengaluru, we were trailing by a goal. This has become a habit for us to score late goals and fight until the last minute. In football, a goal can come at any time. We never surrender and thus we got the results,” he said.Having spent the last three years in Goa, the boy from Punjab has found immense satisfaction in playing in front of Goan football aficionados.”I hail from Punjab, but it has been a great pleasure for me to play for Goa. All the fans here are great. They support you irrespective of results. Goa has a very knowledgeable crowd and gives us great motivation,” he concluded. Get the best of News18 delivered to your inbox – subscribe to News18 Daybreak. Follow on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Telegram, TikTok and on YouTube, and stay in the know with what’s happening in the world around you – in real time.last_img read more

VFS mulls expanding presence to 20 states by 2020

first_imgKolkata, June 8 (PTI) Village Financial Services (VFS), leading micro finance institution of West Bengal, is looking to expand its operations to 20 states over the next three years.”Currently, we are operating in eight states and have recently started operations in Uttrakhand, Tripura, Odisha and Sikkim. Over the next six months, VFS plans to further expand its reach to other states in central, north and western regions of the country. The proposed expansion plan is the part of the companys mission to reach 20 states by 2020,” VFS Managing Director and CEO Kuldip Maity said here today.It currently operates through 167 branches in eight states with a customer base of more than 2 lakh.”VFS plans to enter four more states by the end of FY 2016-17, aiming to increase the customer base to close to 3.4 lakh with the total number of 173 branches with loan book of Rs 500 crore by the end of this fiscal,” he said. PTI BSM KK MKJlast_img read more

4th Test: Wet outfield, rain play spoilsport on day two

first_imgA combination of overnight rain and a soft outfield prevented any play on the second day of the fourth Test between West Indies and India on Friday.An afternoon pitch inspection was imminent when further rain came down. (Scorecard)Although the downpours had subsided in the morning, the volume of rain meant the outfield did not become playable.West Indies are on 62/2 after an opening day that was also severely affected by rain. The hosts lost the wickets of Leon Johnson (9) and Darren Bravo (10) on Thursday, leaving Kraigg Brathwaite (32) and Marlon Samuels (4) as the unbeaten batsmen.India lead the four-match series 2-0 and are looking to keep their place at the top of the Test rankings with a win. However, further rain is forecast for the weekend.last_img read more

Islanders Sweep Away Rangers, 4-1

first_imgNEW YORK — John Tavares and the New York Islanders are rolling into the playoffs, making some team history along the way at the Rangers’ expense.Tavares had a goal and an assist, Thomas Greiss made 36 saves and the Islanders earned their first regular-season sweep of their rivals with a 4-1 victory Thursday night.Shane Prince also had a goal and an assist for the Islanders, who won their third straight and moved into a tie for third with the Rangers with 99 points in the Metropolitan Division. The Pittsburgh Penguins have clinched second place in the division.“Beating the Rangers is always great,” Tavares said. “Obviously there was significance in the positioning today, but I think we know we didn’t play our best. Our goaltender really won us that game today.”Frans Nielsen and Casey Cizikas also scored for the Islanders, who took all four matchups with the Rangers.“We’re playing good right now,” Nielsen said. “We’re winning and I think we’ve got confidence.”Rangers defenseman Kevin Klein scored with 2:48 left to end Greiss’ shutout bid.The Rangers close the regular season at home against Detroit on April 9 and the Islanders finish with home games against Buffalo on Saturday and Philadelphia on April 10 before the Stanley Cup playoffs begin next week.Despite being outshot 16-9 in the second, the Islanders had all the scoring in the period with three goals.Prince opened the scoring when he deflected Marek Zidlicky’s point shot past Henrik Lundqvist at 13:28. It was Prince’s sixth goal of the season.The Islanders scored twice late in the period for a commanding 3-0 lead.Brock Nelson carried the puck into the zone and passed to Prince, who made a slick pass to Cizikas, who scored his eighth of the season at 18:38 to make it 2-0.With defenseman Keith Yandle in the penalty box for tripping, Tavares made a lob pass over the stick of Eric Staal to Nielsen, who scored with 14.8 seconds left in the second period. It was Nielsen’s 20th goal of the season and his first since March 6, also against the Rangers.“They had a lucky bounce on the first goal and they made a couple of good plays on the second and third,” Lundqvist said. “I thought we played a pretty good game, but for some reason this year they definitely had our number. But at the end, we were playing pretty solid.”Antti Raanta replaced Lundqvist at the start of the third period. Lundqvist had 13 saves through two periods.The Rangers outshot the Islanders 28-16 through two, but couldn’t beat Greiss.“We did play well the first two periods,” Rangers coach Alain Vigneault said. “We had some real good looks, some real good offensive zone time, and we just didn’t finish.“That part of the game I didn’t like, but you know what you’re doing to lead up to get those looks was real good.”The Rangers were banged up on defense playing without Dan Girardi and Ryan McDonagh.Girardi was injured April 5 when he was hit into the end boards during a 3-2 victory against the Tampa Bay Lightning. Vigneault said Girardi is day to day with an upper-body injury.McDonagh hurt his hand blocking a shot in a 4-2 win April 4 against the Columbus Blue Jackets.The Islanders are also dealing with several injuries. Anders Lee left the game with a lower-body injury. Defenseman Travis Hamonic, forward Cal Clutterbuck and goalies J.F. Berube and Jaroslav Halak are all out.(SIMMI BUTTAR, AP Sports Writer)TweetPinShare0 Shareslast_img read more

Sri Lanka call up Chamika Karunaratne as Lahiru Kumara replacement

first_imgSri Lanka have called up right-arm fast bowler Chamika Karunaratne to replace the injured Lahiru Kumara for the second Test against Australia and confirmed on Monday that fellow quick Dushmantha Chameera had also been ruled out due to injury.Kumara suffered a torn hamstring on the second day of the first Test in Brisbane, which Sri Lanka lost by an innings and 40 runs, while Chameera has injured his left ankle.Both injured players will return to Sri Lanka on Tuesday, selectors said in a brief statement.The National selectors have picked Right Arm Fast Bowler Chamika Karunaratne in place of injured Lahiru Kumara to join the team in Australia. #AUSvSL Lanka Cricket (@OfficialSLC) January 28, 2019Dushmantha Chameera who suffered an injury on his left ankle; while bowling during the 01st test match will be out of the 2nd test.Both the injured bowlers ( Lahiru Kumara and Dushmantha Chameera) will arrive home on Tuesday. #AUSvSLSri Lanka Cricket (@OfficialSLC) January 28, 2019The second and final Test of the series begins in Canberra on Friday.last_img read more

a month agoAC Milan consider move for Tottenham fullback Serge Aurier

first_imgAC Milan consider move for Tottenham fullback Serge Aurierby Paul Vegasa month agoSend to a friendShare the loveAC Milan are considering a move for Tottenham fullback Serge Aurier.The Serie A side are looking for an alternative for Andrea Conti.Sport Mediaset says they will target Aurier in January.Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino is yet to be convinced by the Ivory Coast international.The Argentine could be open to selling Aurier if he can find a replacement. TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

9 days agoHertha Berlin midfielder Grujic confident of future with Liverpool

first_imgHertha Berlin midfielder Grujic confident of future with Liverpoolby Paul Vegas9 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveHertha Berlin midfielder Marko Grujic believes he has a future with Liverpool.The 23-year-old has returned to the German capital for a second consecutive season as he prepares to join Liverpool’s first team come 2020/21.”It’s not easy to become a part of the Liverpool squad, I can see myself in the red shirt but I have to become more experienced before I can wear it again,” Grujic told the Liverpool Echo.“I want to improve my physical performance and take my concentration to another level. I want to be ready for Liverpool so I will have a chance to get into the team.”Despite offers from Atalanta, Brighton and Eintracht Frankfurt, Grujic stayed at the Olympiastadion – revealing Jurgen Klopp was the driving force behind the decision.He said: “He said that it would be a great opportunity for me to improve my development. The Bundesliga is one of the strongest leagues in the world and Hertha BSC is a big club.“It is very important for me to play regularly right now and [Klopp] told me to fight for my place in the team.” TagsTransfersLoan MarketAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

8 days agoMexico boss Martino happy Man Utd watching Macias and Cordova

first_imgTagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Mexico boss Martino happy Man Utd watching Macias and Cordovaby Paul Vegas8 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveMexico boss Gerardo Martino is happy hearing Manchester United are watching the young pair.Jose Juan Macias and Sebastian Cordova have been linked with United in recent weeks.Macias, a striker with Leon, is also interesting West Ham. Cordova is a 22-year-old winger who plays in his homeland for Club America and has been linked with United in Portuguese media reports.Martino stated: “The important teams in Europe must have in their sights on more than 100 players in the world, which does not mean that they are going to buy them. So they are in the sight of Benfica or Manchester like so many others, it’s the work they must do.“If there is any comment, it’s because they generate it for their performances and are doing things well, it’s likely that there are scouts who take them into account.” last_img read more

Cheteshwar Pujara flops in Ranji Trophy quarter-final after Australia masterclass

first_img India Today Web Desk LucknowJanuary 16, 2019UPDATED: January 16, 2019 14:47 IST Cheteshwar Pujara was dismissed for 11 by Shivam Mavi in the Ranji Trophy quarter-final between Uttar Pradesh and Saurashtra on Wednesday (Reuters Photo)HIGHLIGHTSCheteshwar Pujara was dismissed on 11 after he had spent just a little more than one hourPujara’s dismissal has given the upperhand to Uttar Pradesh, who posted 385 after Rinku Singh’s ton in the 1st inningsPujara batted 1258 balls in 30 hours to score 521 runs, including three centuries, in AustraliaAustralian pace attack, considered one of the best going around, toiled hard to get Cheteshwar Pujara out everytime he walked out to bat during the recently-concluded four-Test series against Australia.On bouncy wickets, Pujara stood like a “Wall” and often proved to be the difference between the two teams in a closely-fought series. He will be remembered forever as the man who starred in India’s first-ever series win in Australia.Pujara scored 521 runs from seven innings but more than the runs he scored, the time he spent at the middle -1258 balls in 30 hours – frustrated and ground down the Australian attack. By the time the final Test was being played, Australia bowlers were a shadow of their lethal self. India made 622 runs, of which Pujara made 193, in the drawn Sydney Test.However, Pujara has suffered a rare failure, in his first competitive innings since returning from Australia. The Saurashtra star was dismissed for 11 in his side’s Ranji Trophy quarter-final against Uttar Pradesh in Lucknow on Wednesday.Pujara batted just an hour and 28 balls for his 11 before India’s U-19 World Cup star from 2018, Shivam Mavi. Following Pujara’s early dismissal, the Jaydev Unadkat-led Saurashtra side is in a spot of bother, reeling at 86 for 4 in 28 overs. While Mavi and Yash Dayal have picked up a wicket each for Uttar Pradesh, Ankit Rajpoot has struck twice so far.Shivam Mavi has managed what Josh Hazlewood, Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc and Nathan Lyon couldn’t – he’s sent Pujara back after just an hour’s batting, and barely into double figures. Uttar Pradesh’s 385 looking suddenly far away for Saurashtra at 73/3. #RanjiTrophyadvertisementSaurabh Somani (@saurabh_42) January 16, 2019Pujara dismissed for 11 ! Langar/ Tim Paine must be dialling Shivam Mavi for tips …#RanjiTrophy Mathur (@AmritMathur1) January 16, 2019Earlier, Uttar Pradesh posted 385 on the board in their first innings. A daddy hundred – 150 from 21-year-old Rinku Singh made sure the hosts had a big total on the board in the first innings.Pujara will be key to Saurashtra’s chances of staging a fightback in the quarter-final tie. The visitors though will have to make sure they don’t concede a sizeable first-innings lead, which decides the winner in India’s premier domestic tournament.Notably, Pujara had decided to shift focus to the domestic tournaments as he has not been part of India’s limited-overs plans over the years. The 30-year-old batsman had also revealed he is hoping to play county cricket during the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2019 season, starting March 23.Pujara had made himself available at the IPL auction at Rs 50 lakh but the Test speciallist did not find a buyer.”I’ll be playing some first-class cricket back home. During IPL, I might be playing county cricket. Next Test series is 6-7 months away. Will give me enough time to prepare. I’ll work hard on my game to play white-ball cricket. But Test cricket is my priority, it’ll always remain my priority,” Pujara had said.Also Read | Best Indian side I have been part of, says Cheteshwar Pujara after series-winning 521 runsAlso Read | Australia series win proudest moment of my 10-year career: Virat KohliAlso Read | India vs Australia: Cheteshwar Pujara a living Buddha, says MSK PrasadAlso See:For sports news, updates, live scores and cricket fixtures, log on to Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for Sports news, scores and updates.Get real-time alerts and all the news on your phone with the all-new India Today app. Download from Post your comment Do You Like This Story? Awesome! Now share the story Too bad. Tell us what you didn’t like in the comments Posted byAkshay Ramesh Tags :Follow Cheteshwar PujaraFollow Ranji trophy 2018-19Follow Uttar Pradesh vs SaurashtraFollow Pujara Ranji Trophy quarter-finalFollow Pujara India vs Australia Cheteshwar Pujara flops in Ranji Trophy quarter-final after Australia masterclassRanji Trophy quarter-final: Cheteshwar Pujara batted just an hour before he was dismissed on 11 by Uttar Pradesh’s young pacer, Shivam Mavi during their quarter-final tie in Lucknow on Wednesday.advertisementlast_img read more

Campaign Helps Nova Scotians Cut Energy Bills

first_imgNova Scotians will learn how to permanently cut their energy bills and reduce greenhouse-gas emissions through a new consumer awareness campaign. Conserve Nova Scotia is partnering with more than 135 home-improvement stores across the province to educate customers about the EnerGuide for Houses program. Through the EnerGuide program, homeowners could qualify for up to $6,500 in federal and provincial rebates, depending on the work completed. “It’s never too early to think about conserving energy, and with the heating season just around the corner, we’re reaching out to consumers where they make purchase decisions to educate them about how they can use less energy,” said Richard Hurlburt, Minister responsible for Conserve Nova Scotia. “Through the EnerGuide program, homeowners could save up to 30 per cent on their energy bills and reduce their greenhouse-gas emissions by 4.6 tonnes a year, on average.” Starting the week of June 23, participating home-improvement stores will feature promotional materials to identify products that make a home more energy efficient and help people qualify for rebates. Installation of promotional materials will take place over the next couple of weeks. Home-improvement stores provincewide were invited to participate in this program. “People often ask us about how they can make their home more energy efficient and use less energy,” said Randy VanZeumeren, retail manager, Enfield Home Hardware. “Educating our customers about the EnerGuide for Houses program is a great way to help them make informed decisions about energy upgrades to their home.” Research shows that 39 per cent of Nova Scotians intended to make energy-efficiency upgrades to their homes last year. To participate in the EnerGuide for Houses program, homeowners can schedule a home energy evaluation by calling the EnerInfo toll free number 1-800-670-4636. After the evaluation, homeowners receive expert advice and a detailed report about ways to make their home more energy efficient. Homeowners then have 18 months to make energy upgrades. Homeowners could qualify for a rebate of up to $6,500, depending on the work done to their home. This includes a $5,000 maximum rebate from the federal government’s ecoENERGY Home Energy Retrofit program and up to $1,500 from the provincial government’s EnerGuide for Houses program. Conserve Nova Scotia also sends participants an energy savings kit with products that can help save up to $100 per year in energy costs. More information about the campaign, including a list of participating retailers, is available online at or by calling the toll-free EnerInfo line at 1-800-670-4636. Under the Environmental Goals and Sustainable Prosperity Act, Nova Scotia has a goal of reducing greenhouse-gas emissions by 2020 to at least 10 per cent below 1990 levels.last_img read more

Amir credits Indias system for rise in boxing singles out Bidhuri for

first_imgNew Delhi: Former Olympic medallist and professional star Amir Khan feels India has a robust system in place to keep producing good boxers for the world stage and singled out 2017 World Championship bronze-winner Gaurav Bidhuri for Olympic glory at the 2020 Tokyo Games. The 32-year-old from Bolton, who clinched the WBC international welterweight title during a Super Boxing League (SBL) bout in Jeddah last week, believes India have the wherewithal to produce champions, who can follow the likes of Vijender Singh and MC Mary Kom. “Indian boxing is doing very good. What I like is that they have a system which not many countries have,” Amir, who had knocked out Australian Billy Dib last Saturday, said during an interview. Also Read – Dhoni, Paes spotted playing football together”In India, all fighters get an opportunity to fight international tournaments, they are funded and they also get paid, because these boxers can’t get jobs as they have to focus on boxing. All countries should follow this system. That’s why they have Olympic medallists like Vijender and Mary Kom and many more will come from this, it will only inspire the next generation.” Asked if India can win a medal at the 2020 Olympics, the British-born boxer said: “One kid I follow is Gaurav Bidhuri, he is a very good boxer. I like his style, I like how he fights, how he pushes himself. I have seen his videos. This kid will get far, if he can stay focussed. He is in the national team and he made a lot of noises, he had some good performances,” added Amir, a two-time world champion. Bidhuri is only the fourth Indian boxer to get a medal at World Championship, claiming the bronze at the 2017 edition in Hamburg, Germany. Speaking on other issues in boxing, Amir said it is a shame that the AIBA was suspended last month and the International Olympic Committee took over the qualification and competition for the Tokyo Olympics.last_img read more

BC drunk driver gets over eight years for killing three people

first_imgVANCOUVER – A British Columbia man who killed three people while driving drunk along a winding mountain highway has been sentenced to eight years and four months in prison.Samuel Alec pleaded guilty in B.C. Supreme Court last month to three counts of impaired driving causing death after he mowed down two cyclists who were out for a weekend ride north of Whistler in May 2015.Alec’s good friend Paul Pierre was a passenger in the vehicle and also died in the collision.Alec, who is 46 years old, was heading home to Lillooet from Mount Currie along Highway 99 following what the court heard was a “lengthy binge of drinking” after a friend’s funeral.He will remain in prison for an additional six years after credit is given for time he already served awaiting trial.The prosecution had asked for a 12-year sentence, while his defence lawyer argued that four years would be more appropriate.During last month’s sentence hearing, Alec turned around in the courtroom and offered a tearful apology to the families of the three men he had killed, saying he would never be able to make up for the pain and suffering he had caused.last_img read more

Morocco to Acquire New Military Helicopters From the US

Rabat – Morocco will acquire AH-64 Apache military helicopters from the US within the next two years. How many helicopters Morocco will receive is unknown.The deal to purchase the Apache helicopters has been underway since April last year, but the timeframe of delivery has only just been revealed“Morocco has a pressing need for new sophisticated attack helicopters,” a source told Moroccan news outlet Le360. The Moroccan government  considered two helicopter models, the US made AH-64 Apache, and the Turkish made T-129 ATAK helicopter, finally settling for the US model mid last year.The AH-64 Apache is one of the world’s most advanced multi-role combat helicopters, used by the US army and many international defense forces. It was used in the Gulf War, and as well as in conflicts in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, and Yemen.Read also: Morocco Ends Series of Military Exercises for 2019 with “Saghro” ExerciseLast week, the U.S. State Department cleared a potential foreign military sale of 24 AH-64 Apache attack helicopters to Qatar, in a deal that could be worth up to $3 billion.Morocco will be the second African country to own the helicopter, after Egypt, which bought a fleet in 1995.Morocco may use these helicopters to protect its borders from illegal migration and drug trafficking. Morocco’s military budget slightly increased from MAD 29.4 billion ($3.2 billion) in 2012 to MAD 34.7 billion in 2018 ($3.5 billion), according to the 2018 Trends in World Military Expenditure report released in April 2019 by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI).Morocco received 62% of its arms from the US between 2014-2018. read more

At UN conference small island countries seek action on climate change

9 December 2007Small island States today called on industrialized countries to take a leadership role at the Bali Climate Change Conference and adopt targets to keep the world from warming past the point where catastrophic impacts would occur. Small island States today called on industrialized countries to take a leadership role at the Bali Climate Change Conference and adopt targets to keep the world from warming past the point where catastrophic impacts would occur.“No island should be left behind,” said Angus Friday of Grenada, the Chairman of the Alliance of Small Island States. These vulnerable countries, he said, are already feeling the impact of climate change in the form of more hurricanes, cyclone and typhoons.Grenada, once deemed to be safe from hurricanes, has been devastated twice in the last seven years causing damage that amounted to 200 per cent of the country’s gross domestic product, he said. Countries such as the Maldives were already spending considerable sums on adaptation efforts, which include building 14 “safe islands,” he added, calling for the Bali meeting to support the launch of an adaptation fund. The conference ended its first week with negotiations in full swing on key issues. According to Yvo de Boer, Executive Secretary of the United Nations Climate Change Convention, Bali has to deliver on several issues of importance to developing countries, including adaptation, transfer of climate friendly technology, strengthened capacity building and progress on reducing emissions due to deforestation. In addition, he said, Bali needs to launch a process beyond 2012 when the first commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol expires.The negotiations, Mr. de Boer said, seemed to be progressing well on a number of fronts. With Rajendra Pachauri formally presenting the report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change to the Conference yesterday, Mr. de Boer said he believes the message of the report is “loud and clear” and that is to “act now.”Today was also ‘Forest Day’ in Bali, a day-long event by the Center for International Research on Forests to help inform the Climate Change Conference process on deforestation issues. Deforestation in developing countries causes roughly 20 per cent of the greenhouse gas emissions.The Bali Conference is presently discussing methods to design a comprehensive plan to reduce emissions from deforestation in developing countries that may include assessments in changes in forest cover, how to demonstrate reductions in deforestation emissions, and how to estimate the amount of emission reduction.“These are very important first steps for fighting emissions from deforestation,” Mr. de Boer told the Forest Day meeting. “They will provide a good basis for further action.”He pointed out that forests worldwide contain more than the amount of carbon in the entire atmosphere. “Cutting them down immediately releases carbon stored in the forest carbon pools as CO2 emissions.” read more

Likely to miss 420 Question of how best to tax legal pot

OTTAWA — The Trudeau government is still wrestling with how to tax recreational pot, even as it indicates it’s poised to introduce long-awaited legalization legislation next month in advance of April 20 — the “Weed Day” popularly known as 4/20.Finance Minister Bill Morneau said Monday that the feds “haven’t made enough progress” in terms of taxing marijuana and several other issues related to legalizing the drug.The focus has instead been on making sure weed stays out of the hands of children and criminals, Morneau said during a news conference in Calgary.“Those are our two key goals as we move forward,” he said.“The issue around taxation, any of those issues, are very subsidiary to those first two goals, and we’ve not yet gotten to conclusions on those sort of aspects at this time.”News of the pending legislation — the timing of which, media reports suggest, means recreational pot would be fully legal by July 1, 2018 — pushed up share prices Monday for the country’s large marijuana producers.Chris Selley: Legalization or no legalization, it’s time to get serious about marijuanaMarijuana stocks on fire after report that Canada’s legalization bill is in the works for 2018Our feature series on pot legalizationShares of Canopy Growth Corp. (TSX:WEED) closed 11 per cent higher after gaining $1.10 to $10.98 on the Toronto Stock Exchange. Aphria (TSX:APH) finished 8.39 per cent higher at $6.72 per share, a gain of 52 cents.Yet Morneau’s comments suggest at least one key issue remains far from resolved, despite the fact multiple government sources confirmed Monday that the government plans to introduce the bill during the week of April 10.And the timing has at least one critic suggesting the Liberal government is more interested in placating marijuana users, who famously gather around the world each April 20 — including on Parliament Hill — to indulge in their favourite strain and flout the law in jurisdictions where it’s illegal.“This is a totally arbitrary timeline,” said Conservative health critic Colin Carrie.“(Prime Minister Justin Trudeau) is more interested in pandering to the marijuana users than doing his job and looking after the health and safety of Canadians.”This year’s 4/20 gathering was expected to become a massive — and highly visible — protest against a Liberal government already known for breaking or stalling a number of high-profile campaign promises, including electoral reform.The Liberals made the legalization of marijuana a key promise in their election platform in 2015, which was followed by the appointment of a high-level task force to study the issue.The task force, led by former cabinet minister Anne McLellan, recommended storefront and mail-order sales to people 18 and older, personal growing limits of four plans per person and a 30-gram limit on personal possession.Several provincial leaders said Monday that they are eagerly waiting to see what the federal legislation looks like so that they can start working to amend their own laws to make legal weed a reality.Yet they also sounded a note of caution, noting there are many issues still to be worked out before Canadians can start buying marijuana over the counter.Those include how to distribute the drug, establishing new rules around impaired driving, determining acceptable levels of pesticides and other impurities, and ensuring adequate addiction support.“We are aware that there are a number of complex issues that have to be accommodated by the provinces once this legislation goes through,” said Alberta Premier Rachel Notley.“We need to consult with Albertans and we have to know exactly what the federal legislation looks like before we can figure out what our path looks like after that.”We are aware that there are a number of complex issues that have to be accommodated by the provinces once this legislation goes through,Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard said he was generally in favour of legalization, but worried it could saddle the provinces with extra financial costs in terms of testing or awareness campaigns.Asked if it could prove an economic boon for the provinces, Couillard said: “It’s too early to say, but it certainly won’t be driving the economies of outlying regions in the next few years.”NDP justice critic Alistair MacGregor said it’s about time the Liberals moved forward on legalization, adding that his concern is many more Canadians could be arrested for possession before it happens. read more

Annan receives Philadelphia Liberty Medal donates grant to AIDS fund

Saying he was honoured to receive the award on United States Independence Day, Mr. Annan drew the connection between the country’s founding values and the aspirations of the world’s people. “Though your Independence Day heralded freedom for the American people, it inspired – and continues to inspire – millions the world over who strive to end tyranny and defend human dignity,” he noted. The Secretary-General pointed out that the US and the UN share a common vision of freedom and opportunity for all men and women. “As one of the main founders of the United Nations, and as host country of the Organization, the United States has understood that the United Nations’ mission is to bring the benefits of those rights and freedoms we celebrate today to people in every corner of the world,” he said. In donating the prize money from the Liberty Medal to the Fund, Mr. Annan expressed hope that his contribution “will be followed by many more donations from Governments, foundations and citizens like you gathered here today – all of us committed to defeating the scourge of HIV/AIDS.”The Philadelphia Liberty Medal honours an individual or organization demonstrating leadership and vision in the pursuit of liberty of conscience or freedom from oppression, ignorance or deprivation. It was awarded to the Secretary-General by Philadelphia’s Mayor, John Street. read more

FROM THE FIELD Urban Mexico moves toward better livelihoods cleaner cities

UNDP Mexico/Andrea EganThe United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Mexico is supporting partnerships and programmes aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions, and gearing up the use of solar power, as well as promoting ecologically-responsible tourism as part of its commitment to efficient city planning.This report from UNDP coincides with World Cities Day, which the UN has designated as 31 October to promote the international community’s interest in global urbanizaiton. Read more here for details on how the UN agency is supporting Mexico’s efforts to ensure that its cities are safe, inclusive, and resilient. read more

Brocks new Law Plus program an introduction to wide range of careers

Starting in September, undergrad students studying in any Brock University program will be able to concurrently lay the foundation for a law-related career.The University has launched Law Plus, a new four-year, non-credit program that will help students gain pre-law knowledge and hands-on experience. It’s modelled on Brock’s highly successful Med Plus program, which has been running for 20 years and a 92 per cent success rate for students landing careers in health-care.“Similar to Med Plus, being in the Law Plus program will open students’ eyes to a variety of career paths that will use the skills and experiences they’ve gained,” said Cara Krezek, Director, Co-op, Career and Experiential Education. “It’s also about preparing them to write the LSATs, enter law school, and so much more.”With the Law Plus program set to begin this September, the enrolment deadline for the inaugural year is coming up Monday, April 15. To ensure students get a personalized and enriched experience, the first cohort will be limited to 30 people.“During their first year, students will begin to network with a variety of career professionals and gain exposure to volunteering with different populations,” said Law Plus Consultant Stacia Heaton. “In future years, they will build on their skills and experiences with continued exposure to law-related professions, job shadowing, ethics forums and more.”In addition to their undergrad studies, the Law Plus students will spend between five and seven hours each week attending skill-based workshops, learning from guest speakers and participating in volunteer placements with community organizations.“We’re preparing them for careers they’re passionate about and helping them develop the skills and knowledge they require,” said Krezek.Like Med Plus, Law Plus is open to all Brock students, regardless of which undergraduate degree they’re working toward.“The program aims to have students from all Faculties who will bring a variety of interests to the table, which will enrich the experience for everyone,” Heaton said.Advising Brock on the new program has been an industry panel that includes lawyers, community organization representatives and faculty members.“Having the industry so invested and enthused about Law Plus is fantastic. They’re helping to shape the program and move it forward,” Heaton said. “They will also have the partnerships and relationships that will help us develop placements that students will be able to engage in.”For more information on the new Law Plus program, visit Brock’s Co-op, Career and Experiential Education website. read more