China inherits a rail success story

first_imgAs China resumes sovereignty over Hong Kong on July 1 it inherits from the British a mix of profitable and efficient railways and a rolling programme of expansion. Tim Runnacles* reviews the latest position,T V Runnacles is a Hong Kong-based independent consultant who has been advising the MTR Corporation on its Airport Railway during the last four years, as well as undertaking assignments in South Africa, Kazakstan and Malaysia. He had previously worked in the Hong Kong government’s Transport Department for 15 years.WITH ITS ALMOST unrivalled urban population density, Hong Kong’s 6·4 million people rely heavily on public transport. Rail plays a significant role in this, with five systems controlled by four operators, ranging from the 1·4 km Peak Tram funicular to the 43·2 km network of the MTR Corporation (Table I). Further lines are under construction or planned, and with a buoyant economy and unexpectedly fast population growth, China’s new Special Administrative Region faces strong arguments for continuing expansion of the network.The foundation for the current expansion plans was the former Hong Kong government’s Railway Development Strategy published in December 1994 after several years of studies (RG 2.95 p83). Supplementing the previously-committed Airport Railway, the Strategy identified a package of ‘Priority A’ projects costed at HK$56bn which were scheduled for completion by 2001. These were:last_img read more

Some Swiss Pensionskassen reject ESG citing costs, lack of detail

first_imgESG products are too expensive and their targets are too vague, according to a poll of Swiss pension funds.In addition, investors often had to pay extra fees for specialist expertise for environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) investing, consultancy group Complementa found.The company’s latest risk “check up” survey of Swiss Pensionskassen reported that, regardless of whether respondents had exposure to sustainable investments, 60% agreed that the costs of specialised products had put them off investing in the sector.More than half (57%) cited the need for additional expert know-how as a detractor. Complementa questioned 97 pension funds with total assets of CHF183bn (€160.9bn).The main negative factors cited by the Pensionskassen as discouraging them from sustainable investing were the randomness of ESG-related targets (75%) and lack of measurability of targets (72%).Only 35% agreed that bad performance might be a reason not to include ESG products in their portfolio. More than half of Pensionskassen thought ESG could help achieve higher performance over the long run and reduce risks.Despite their concerns, almost 80% of the focus group denied that sustainability was just a passing trend.Given the “limited resources” of pension funds, Complementa said it was “surprised” to find 79% of participants agreeing that ESG was becoming more of a topic for smaller Pensionskassen as well.The survey confirmed recent findings by the lobby group Swiss Sustainable Finance, which reported a major increase in the inclusion of ESG products and approaches in Swiss institutional portfolios. In the Complementa survey, 80% of participants agreed it made sense to add sustainable investments to make a difference for society as well as the environment.Asked which of the three factors in ESG investing was the most relevant, “governance” received the highest marks, followed by “environment” and “social”.Most of the surveyed Pensionskassen added sustainable investments as single products or funds to their portfolio.Over the next few years many pension funds want to increase their exposure, make their first foray into sustainability or at least begin to research ESG, Complementa reported.The respondents agreed that considering sustainability was part of their fiduciary duty under the BVG law guiding the Swiss second pillar – but they did not see it as their fiduciary duty to actually invest in sustainable products.last_img read more

Seasonal area restrictions on fishing in US Caribbean federal waters begin December 1

first_img Share NewsRegional Seasonal area restrictions on fishing in US Caribbean federal waters begin December 1 by: – November 17, 2011 Sharing is caring! 12 Views   no discussions Portrait of a red and white Red Hind (Epinephelus guttatus). Image via: coral.orgSAN JUAN, Puerto Rico — The NOAA Fisheries Service has reminded the public that commercial and recreational fishing for, or possession of red hind is prohibited from 12:01 a.m., local time, December 1 through the last day of February each year in or from the area off the west coast of Puerto Rico (defined as those waters in the US Caribbean federal waters west of 67° 10’ W longitude).Also, during this time, fishing for any species is prohibited in federal waters for the following red hind spawning aggregation areas: Lang Bank red hind spawning aggregation area, east of St Croix.Additionally, fishing for any species and anchoring activities by fishing vessels within the Hind Bank Marine Conservation District (MCD) is prohibited year round: Hind Bank MCD, south of St Thomas.This action complies with regulations implemented under Amendment 3 to the Fishery Management Plan for the Reef Fish Fishery of Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands to address required provisions of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, and is necessary to protect these resources. The Caribbean Fishery Management Council, in cooperation with NOAA Fisheries Service, developed the amendment to regulate fishing mortality.Caribbean News Nowcenter_img Tweet Share Sharelast_img read more

Jail officers sought in Ripley County

first_imgVersailles, In. — The Ripley County Sheriff’s Department is hiring jail officers.Applicants must be at least 18-years-old, have a high school diploma or equal and pass a background check. The position pays $29,432 per year.Apply in person at the Ripley County Sheriff’s Department at 210 N. Monroe Street in Versailles between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. Monday through Friday, apply online or if there are questions call 812-689-5558.last_img

Ajax’s Nouri wakes up from coma after three years

first_imgRelatedPosts UEFA Nations League: Barella sinks Holland as Italy get back on winning trail Man U complete £40m Van de Beek deal We understand decision not to award league title to us — Ajax Amsterdam Tragic Ajax star Abdelhak ‘Appie’ Nouri has stunned doctors by miraculously waking up after spending two years and nine months in a coma. The midfielder sadly suffered severe and permanent brain damage when he collapsed on the pitch during a cardiac arrhythmia attack in the summer of 2017. But Dutch website AD say Nouri is now awake and that he “sleeps, eats, frowns and burps but is very dependent.” “Good,” said his brother when asked about the Ajax ace’s condition. “He has not been home very long, we take care of him there now. I must say that since he is at home it is going much better than before in the hospital. “He is aware of where he is, he is back in a familiar environment with his family. He’s no longer in a coma. He’s just awake. He sleeps, he sneezes, he eats, he burps, but it’s not like he gets out of bed. “He’s very bedridden and still very dependent on us. On his good days there is a form of communication, for example, confirmation with his eyebrows or a smile. But you notice that he can’t last that very long. “We talk to him like he’s not sick. We take him into our conversations and we watch football with him in the living room, for example. Then he watches. You notice that he likes that very much. “He often shows emotions. Sometimes he is emotional, but often there is also a smile. That does us good. That makes you really appreciate a smile.” Former Ajax teammate Frenkie De Jong recently revealed that Nouri helped him decide which club he should join on leaving the Amsterdam outfit. The playmaker eventually made a £68 million move to La Liga champions Barcelona but not before he had received Nouri’s blessing on the transfer. Then when De Jong was choosing between PSG and Barcelona in the summer, he visited Nouri at his home: “I started to have doubts. Then Appie’s mother came in and asked him: ‘Where should Frenkie go?’ “She named the clubs and said: ‘Should he go to Barcelona?’ Then Appie signalled with his eyebrows to agree. That was a very nice moment for me and the family.”Tags: Abdelhak NouriAjax AmsterdamCardiac ArrhythmiaHollandlast_img read more

Cricket News IND V AUS: India start as favourite in two-match T20 series

first_imgNew Delhi: We are all set to witness a crackerjack of a series between India and Australia which is scheduled to start on 24thFebruary at Visakhapatnam. It is no doubt that India and Australia are two powerhouses of International cricket. For India, the upcoming series will be the last assignment before the forthcoming World Cup. However, for Australia, the limited overs series will act as an opportunity to continue their winning momentum.The last T20 series between the teams ended in a draw with rain playing spoilsport in one of the encounters. Series also surrounds a lot of tension as there have been calls that Men In Blue may boycott the game against Pakistan in the wake of Pulwama Terror Attack. In these circumstances, it will be important for the hosts to keep their fortitude on the game and leave the issue for the administrators to decide.Skipper Virat Kohli will return to business after being rested for the T20 leg against New Zealand. He will look get the rush going and deliver what he is expected of.Australia, on the other hand, will look to get a solution to solve the trickiest question of how to play the spin. Both Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav dented the opposition on their first tour to Australia. Fortunately for Australia, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) selection committee has rested the latter for the series. However, the young sensation Mayank Markande has been included in the T20 setup.Team CombinationFor India, it is expected that Shikhar Dhawan and KL Rahul will start off the innings with captain Virat Kohli coming at the number three slot. Kohli will be followed by MS Dhoni and Dinesh Karthik. The lower middle order will consist of Krunal Pandya, Vijay Shankar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Jasprit Bumrah, Umesh Yadav, and Mayank Markande.Probable XI Shikhar Dhawan, KL Rahul, Virat Kohli (c), MS Dhoni (wk), Dinesh Karthik, Krunal Pandya, Vijay Shankar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Jasprit Bumrah, Umesh Yadav, and Mayank Markande.For Australia, the likes of Aaron Finch and Marcus Stoinis will open the innings. Usman Khawaja, Peter Handscomb, and Shaun Marsh will occupy third, fourth, and fifth spot. Glenn Maxwell will lead the lower middle-order followed by Alex Carey, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Pat Cummins, Adam Zampa, and Kane Richardson.Probable XIAaron Finch (c), Marcus Stoinis, Usman Khwaja, Peter Handscomb, Shaun Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Alex Carey, Nathan Coulter Nile, Pat Cummins, Adam Zampa, and Kane Richardson.Who will win?Seeing at India’s dominance over the last year and a half, and especially on their home soil, it is highly likely that India start as favourite to win the first encounter. In the Head to Head statistics, India leads T20 format convincingly having won 11 out of 18 games, and it’s almost certain to make the tally reach 12.Pitch and GroundVizag has always been a high scoring ground and the team will have to score big or restrict the opposition to a low score. There should also be some due on the out filed, which eventually will make scoring easy.Stadium and TimeVisakhapatnam Cricket Stadium at 7 p.m (IST) For all the Latest Sports News News, Cricket News News, Download News Nation Android and iOS Mobile Apps.last_img read more

DPS discusses new protocol for campus shooting

first_imgSpurred by the increase in campus shooting incidents in recent years, the Department of Public Safety has transitioned to a new protocol where officers immediately respond to active shooting situations on campus.In the past, DPS officers would set up a perimeter around the shooting area until a SWAT team from LAPD arrived. Now, DPS officers will immediately engage in order to detain the shooter and tend to injured victims.This decision was made mainly to provide a quicker response to an active shooter. The former protocol required DPS dispatchers to call in a LAPD SWAT team, located in downtown Los Angeles. According to Deputy Chief David Carlisle, it would take this team at least 20 minutes to gear up and drive to campus, during which time lives would be unnecessarily lost.“A typical shooting situation lasts for three to five minutes total,” Carlisle said. “In that situation, time equals lives. We simply can’t afford to wait for LAPD to make it here.”DPS officers are now expected to be prepared to respond to an active shooter situation at any time. In order to meet this expectation, the department puts each officer through Multiple Assault Counter-Terrorism Action Capabilities training. Every officer repeats the training annually, and the department carries out a variety of live-action training drills in campus buildings during University breaks.MACTAC training teaches a variety of skills for handling a shooting situation, such as holding a formation when entering a building or breaking down a barricaded door. One of the main points emphasized in this training is specialized medical skills — such as how to make a tourniquet — so that officers can help stabilize victims until ambulances arrive on the scene.“This is ongoing training, so it’s something that we want our officers to continue to repeat and relearn,” said Sergeant Ricardo Gonzalez, who is in charge of training DPS officers in MACTAC techniques. “Our focus has been on educating the officers so that they feel prepared. I think we’re ready.”Though DPS will serve as the first responders on the scene, LAPD will still be called in to support DPS officers. The MACTAC training that DPS officers receive is the same training that LAPD officers receive for dealing with terrorist activity in the Los Angeles area. Both departments trained together over the summer in order to work together fluidly if an active shooter situation were to occur on campus.These trainings teach officers to focus first on stopping the shooter, and then tending to victims’ medical needs. In another change to previous protocol, when ambulances are called to the scene, medical workers will be able to immediately enter the building. This decision was also made due to the necessity of a rapid response in order to save victims’ lives.“In this type of situation, every minute matters,” Carlisle said. “We’re making adjustments that will hopefully cut down our response time so that we can be as effective as possible. It’s all about reacting and being able to react quickly.”Even with these changes, Carlisle fears that DPS won’t be able to arrive quickly enough to stop the shooter, who will likely either flee the scene or commit suicide once police arrive. This means that students, staff and faculty must be equally trained in how to react to an active shooter situation. DPS has begun training faculty members using a program called “Run, Hide, Fight,” which earned its name from the three options any student or faculty member has during an active shooter situation. Its training involves developing spacial awareness of where a person can hide in a room and how to emotionally prepare for defending oneself against a shooter.DPS is also offering to extend this training beyond faculty to student organizations. Carlisle said he and his department accept the fact that they can’t prevent a shooter situation, but they are continuing to seek out options to lower the risks and improve their response to such a crisis.“This is a high-risk, low-likelihood situation,” Carlisle said. “But we have to take every precaution we can to keep our students and our faculty safe. We prepare for the worst, and then hope for the best — that we’ll never have to use this [training].”last_img read more

Students celebrate Sikhism

first_imgThroughout this week, USC’s Sikh Student Association is hosting Sikh Awareness Week. The celebration is aimed at educating students about many facets of Sikhism, a monotheistic religion with roots in the Punjab region of South Asia.According to SSA President Himmat Singh, the goal for this week is to raise awareness about Sikhs and their faith. Sikhism is the fifth largest religion in the world, but Sikhs are still often victims of discrimination and violence. Since Sikhism is derived from South Asia and requires Sikhs to wear turbans, Singh said that many confuse the religion for Islam or Hinduism. He hopes that this week’s events will help to educate students across campus.“It’s really big for us to make an appearance on campus, to show that we are USC students too,” Himmat Singh said. “We’ve had so many students coming up to us, spending those extra minutes listening to our faith and what’s important to us, and that really means a lot.”SSA kicked off the week on Monday with Sikh artist Amandeep Singh, who goes by the name “Inkquisitive” and creates vibrant editorial and religious art. As part of his Colourfornia tour, Amandeep  Singh created a mural next to SSA’s tent on Trousdale Parkway throughout the day. On Tuesday night, Amandeep Singh presented the piece of art to students and gave a Q&A at Ground Zero Performance Café.Also on Tuesday, SSA held a turban tying event on Trousdale. Students were able to try on turbans, which are a vital part of the Sikh faith. Sikhs are expected to keep Kesh hair — meaning that they do not cut their hair — and to cover their heads with a turban. The event was meant to relieve negative stigmas surrounding turbans in American culture.“I think there’s a huge stigma against turbans,” Himmat Singh said. “It helped people see that the turban is respected and that you shouldn’t be afraid of it. It is a symbol that we are really wanting to share with others.”SSA showed a screening of the classic Sikh film Chaar Sahibzaade on Wednesday night. The film doubled as both entertainment and education, as it told the story of the 10th Sikh Guru and the sacrifices of his four sons. This story is another vital part of Sikhism.A Seva event will take place Thursday morning, as students are invited to gather on Trousdale at 11:30 a.m. to create cards for terminally ill patients. Seva, which means “work offered to God,” is charity work that makes up a main part of the Sikh practice.The week will conclude on Friday at Fishbowl Chapel for a night of Kirtan meditation to commemorate the victims of the 1984 Sikh genocide in India. In a series of pogroms, anti-Sikh mobs led by Congress party members attacked Sikhs throughout the country, killing 2,800 people. Friday’s event will educate participants about the specifics of the genocide and end with a celebration of the Sikh culture and faith.The SSA is hoping that this week will act as a springboard for a year-long campaign to raise Sikh awareness across campus. Himmat Singh is also coordinating with Sikh campus organizations across California, along with working to increase membership at USC. However, he says that the SSA’s focus for the year — and for the foreseeable future — will be raising awareness and stopping negative stigmas.“You can never stop teaching people about who Sikhs are,” Himmat Singh said. “The more we teach about who we are, the less stigma there is against Sikhs and the less terrible things we’ll see happen around the world. We’re going to keep trying to get out, to educate people and hopefully, we can keep succeeding.”last_img read more

Ron Mvouika discusses attacks in native Paris, path to St. John’s

first_imgRon Mvouika and St. John’s had just beaten Wagner when the coaching staff told him the news.There had been terrorist attacks in Paris, France, where Mvouika was born and raised.“It’s very sad,” Mvouika said. “That’s the type of stuff that happens that you can’t really control. It’s sad to see something like that happen in my city. It touched me.”While the guard said that none of his family members were injured in the attacks, he knows of several friends who were affected.“I checked my phone to see if everyone was okay,” Mvouika said. “I was lucky enough that nobody close got hit.”AdvertisementThis is placeholder textThe Frenchman dedicated his next game, a Red Storm victory, to the victims. He scored 16 points.Mvouika’s entire family is still living in Paris, 25 minutes away from one of the bombsites, where he was raised in what he called “the other side of Paris.” The fifth-year senior used basketball at an early age to help him stay away from the “hood.” And it’s the same game that’s brought him to St. John’s in the biggest city in the world.“Basketball was a way for me to get out of there and do something positive,” Mvouika said. “Not a lot of people make it out.”The hopes of playing in the United States has always been there for Mvouika, who is the third-leading scorer for the Red Storm. As a kid, his hero was Michael Jordan and his dream was to play in the NBA.Mvouika came to the U.S. to play at Huntington (West Virginia) Prep for his senior year of high school. He then played two years of junior college ball at Sheridan in Wyoming and another at Missouri State before missing the next due to a back injury.With one season of eligibility left, Mvouika knew where he wanted to spend it.“You have Coach Mullin, Madison Square Garden and the city of New York,” Mvouika said. “(St. John’s) is filled with tradition and history. I mean just look at the jerseys up there like it was just easy.”Mvouika said that everything is different for him this season, but he’s loved the transition. Transferring from a town in Springfield, Missouri, to the “bright lights” of New York City, everything is on a bigger scale for him from tougher competition and increased media coverage to the capacity of arenas he plays in.On Sunday, St. John’s will welcome Syracuse to the Garden and Mvouika will have another chance to play the game that’s kept him safe, a chance he’s grateful for.It’ll be a far different environment in the world’s most famous arena compared to the one in the mourning city he’s left behind.“This is the world we live in.” Mvouika said. “… You just send your prayers up and you keep on pushing.” Comments Published on December 11, 2015 at 7:20 pm Contact Jack: Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

Copa America Day 2 : Mexico,Bolivia in stalemate

first_imgMexico and Bolivia both hindered their chances of making it out of Group A, playing out an insipid goalless draw in the Copa America.The result leaves Chile clear at the top of the group standings after one round of fixtures, with neither Mexico nor Bolivia taking the initiative in their efforts to mount a quarter-final challenge at the Estadio Sausolito.Both sides struggled to make any real impression on the match, although Mexico became more of a threatening proposition in the final third following the second half introduction of Atletico Madrid striker Raul Jimenez.Although Jimenez passed up the best chance of the match, glancing a header from a Jesus Corona cross to the near post across goal when he really should have found the net with his effort.–last_img read more