Mashrafe Mortaza: Peoples captain whom a nation loves

first_imgBy Kushan Sarkar Mirpur, Mar 3 (PTI) Call it a compulsion, but sporting achievements are often measured by numbers in hand and that is precisely why it will be difficult to analyse Bangladesh captain Mashrafe Mortazas influence and contribution in the countrys ever-growing cricketing ambitions. Because numbers alone like 78 Test, 204 ODI and 35 T20 International wickets cannot explain why the strapping 32- year-old pacer is the countrys most iconic cricketer despite not being in the league of a global star like Shakib Al Hasan or the new sensation Mustafizur Rahaman. Because Mashrafe is Bangladeshs own boy — a peoples man, who can effortlessly carry the burden of expectations of millions of cricket crazy fans here. Perhaps the only national cricket captain, who would dump his luxury sedan and travel to training on a cycle rickshaw with his gigantic cricket coffin. Someone who is ready for a good scrap despite his cricketing limitations and injuries, that has dogged his career throughout. He is a man, who is ready to gracefully accept challenge of a local journalist who can tell him on his face that “your team will not win a single match in Asia Cup T20”. But Mashrafe politely told him, “I accept the challenge and will not say a word till we reach the final.” After winning a thriller, the same scribe with a huge grin asked him the same question about how a big a challenge it was and Mashrafe smiled and replied: “But you only said that we wont win a single match.” The local media had their apprehensions about the teams chances in Asia Cup and most of them had booked flights on March 5 to either Kolkata or Delhi from where they would fly to Dharamsala for the World T20 qualifiers. One scribe asked Mashrafe, “I dont know what to do as I have flight tickets booked for Dharamsala on March 5.” Mashrafe smiled and said: “Go to Dharamsala. What will you do watching the final?” There was no arrogance or sarcasm in his voice when he said this but an air normalcy which ensured that nobody was offended. Thats the reason one is not surprised when he terms the two boundaries he hit off Mohammed Amirs bowling as “lucky shots”. “I was a bit lucky that I connected both. You can say in my T20 international career, the two most important boundaries that I have struck,” his smile was almost apologetic. MORE PTI KHS PM PMadvertisementlast_img read more

No Sachin Tendulkar in Kumar Sangakkara’s all-time XI

first_imgSachin Tendulkar maybe among the greatest batsmen in the history of cricket but Sri Lankan legend Kumar Sangakkara did not find a place for the Indian run-machine in his dream XI. In his all-time XI, Sangakkara has ignored Tendulkar. In fact, Rahul Dravid is the lone Indian in the team, which is dominated by Australian cricketers.In a video posted on Lord’s Ground Twitter page, Sangakkara opts for Matthew Hayden and Dravid as openers. Former New Zealand skipper Brendon McCullum, who featured in a similar video, had Tendulkar as the lone Indian in his team. Sangakkara had no second thoughts in picking his favourite Brian Lara to bat at No. 3 for his team. Australian great Ricky Ponting has piped Tendulkar and secured the No. 4 spot. While choosing the top four without any hesitation, Sangakkara had selection headaches when it came to the No. 5 spot. The left-handed batsman revealed he found it difficult to choose between Sri Lanka greats and teammates Mahela Jayawardene and Aravinda de Silva. “I want them both to be in my team,” he said, after going ahead with the 1996 World Cup winner as the captain of his team.  All-rounder Jacques Kallis also featured in the squad, which had Australia cricketer Adam Gilchrist donning the wicketkeeper’s gloves.  Sangakkara had the spin twins Muttiah Muralitharan and Shane Warne in his team and the pace bowling department featured Wasim Akram and Chaminda Vaas.Sangakkara had deliberated choosing Glenn McGrath but then decided in favour of his former teammate Vaas.Here’s Sangakkara’s all-time XIadvertisementlast_img read more

Roar at Indian cricket grounds humbles me: AB de Villiers

first_imgHe is at the prime of his career, has scored over 8,000 runs in 98 Tests for South Africa, more than 8,000 runs in 190 One-day Internationals and more than 40,000 runs overall. He’s been termed the “finest batsman of his generation” by Indian cricket captain Virat Kohli, and yet the explosive A.B. de Villiers says the roar at the stadia during the Indian Premier League (IPL) matches makes him feel humble and privileged.”Above all, the chanting makes me feel humble and privileged and, of course, obliged to score some runs,” AB, 32, writes in his autobiography, which was released in Bengaluru on Thursday.”It is difficult for me to understand how someone from a relatively small town in rural South Africa can be so fortunate and so favoured that when he walks out to bat, or simply takes guard, in almost any cricket ground in India, he can be greeted by tens of thousands of happy people chanting his initials.”A-B-D! A-B-D! A-B-D!De Villiers and Kohli form the backbone of RCB’s batting lineup. (BCCI Photo)”I am not arrogant, big-headed or self-important. I am simply grateful to God for giving me the talent to entertain people, for giving me the skill to hit a cricket ball in a way that excites people. I have wondered about these events and arrived at the conclusion that it remains His talent and His skill effectively being manifested through me. I genuinely feel so blessed to be following the path He has chosen for me,” writes AB, South Africa’s Test and ODI captain who initially played for Delhi Daredevils in the IPL and now turns out for Royal Challengers Bangalore.advertisementAB’s was a transformation that started in 2007 — three years after his Test debut at age 20, two years after his ODI debut and a year after his T20I debut — when he realised that it wasn’t going to be enough for him to be just another run-of-the-mill international batsman with an average in the mid-30s.”I wanted to be much better than that. I didn’t say anything to anyone — there was no point boasting or bragging. But quietly and privately, I promised myself I would become the best batsman in the world. That was my goal. Nothing less would suffice. I believed I had the potential and I wanted to be No.1,” AB writes.HOW DID IT ALL UNRAVEL?”First, I needed to improve my batting technique, specifically to develop a correct and solid defence. Just playing strokes and attacking almost every delivery was not going to be enough.”Second, I needed to become more disciplined, more organised and more professional, on and off the field; I needed to create a trusted support system that would enable me to focus exclusively on the cricket. Living from match to match, from deal to deal, from party to party was not going to be enough,” AB writes.The upshot? At a private party during the fifth edition of the IPL in 2012, former West Indian great Vivian Richards took him aside and told him: “I’m serious, you’re changing the way this game is played. People used to say the same about me many years ago, but I am saying it to you now. You are taking cricket to a new level. Keep going.””Feeling overwhelmed, I thanked him and tried to change the subject,” AB writes.Such is the modesty of the man, the youngest of three talented, sports-mad brothers, who grew up in the town of Warmbad in Transvaal province and excelled in tennis, rugby and cricket.Little wonder that former Australian great Adam Gilchrist has termed AB as “the most valuable cricketer on the planet”.Given the churning in the cricketing world due to the increasing popularity of the two shorter formats and the proliferation of T20 Leagues, does he think Tests are in danger of dying out?TEST CRICKET IN SAFE HANDSAb de Villiers in action for RCB in the IPL.Certainly not. “There are plenty of knowledgeable people in the game who seriously doubt whether Test cricket will be played a decade or so from now. It may have been an epic Test at Wanderers (in October 2011 when Australia managed 310 in their second inning, a feat that had never been achieved at the ground and which their captain Michael Clarke described as “unbelievable”, to draw the series 1-1), as they would say, but the last day was played to an almost empty stadium and, ultimately, there will be no Tests if there is no crowd.advertisement”Personally, I am not overly concerned about the future of Test cricket. The commercial reality that ODIs and T20s draw large crowds and generate 95 per cent of the revenue is clear, but the popularity of limited-overs cricket does not mean there is no room for Tests, particularly when the entertainment remains as exceptional as it was at Wanderers (‘Four seasons of IPL cricket have not produced anything like this’, a journalist typed into his laptop), and when the longer format of the game continues to be enjoyed by a core audience.”Many people predicted the end of roast beef when hamburgers came on the market. Those fears were misplaced because, while the mass market loves the convenience of fast food, a significant core audience still cherishes the real thing.”In my view, Test cricket will continue to be played for many decades to come, played in daylight hours, played with a red ball and played in white clothing. It will continue because it remains the preferred format of a strong group of spectators whose numbers are not declining and whose passion is not diminishing. I count myself a member of this audience, and I will be watching Test cricket for many years after I stop playing,” AB writes.It’s this clarity of thought that makes AB’s autobiography such a riveting read.last_img read more

Indian Super League: NorthEast United edge FC Pune City 1-0 to keep last-4 hopes alive

first_imgNorthEast United FC kept their Indian Super League (ISL) football semi-final qualification hopes alive with a narrow 1-0 victory over FC Pune City here on Tuesday. (Latest Football stories)NorthEast had gone six matches without a win, losing four of them.With just two points from their last six matches they were on the verge of exit until Ivory Coast midfielder Romaric scored from a stunning free-kick in the 81st minute here at the Indira Gandhi Athletic Stadium.The victory helped NorthEast accumulate 14 points from 11 matches and move to the sixth spot. With three matches still left to be played their coach Nelo Vingada will feel confident.Pune now have 15 points from 12 matches and will have to win their next two games to be assured of a place in the play-offs.The battle was a cagey affair particularly in the first session when neither team enjoyed clear cut chances.Pune’s Momar Ndoye was the only player who got a sighter at goal but could not beat goalkeeper Subrata Paul from a narrow angle.Pune’s midfielder Jonatan Lucca also missed a good chance from just outside the box when the ball fell for him nicely but he could only shoot waywardly with his left-foot.For NorthEast, there was hardly any chance of note with midfielder Katsumi Yusa’s attempt on goal which goalkeeper Edel Bete saved without much difficulty. It was their only shot on target in the first half.In the second session, Pune came out all guns blazing and were unlucky not to take the lead.advertisementIn the 69th minute, Lenny Rodrigues’ fierce shot from 35 yards beat goalkeeper Paul but bounced off the crossbar.Spanish midfielder Pitu then tried his luck after Izumi Arata had chested the ball down for him inside the penalty box but goalkeeper Paul measured up to the challenge with a one-handed reflex save.Surviving the onslaught, NorthEast scored the match in the 81st minute.The hosts won a free-kick just outside the box and Romaric stepped up to take it. The Ivory Cost midfielder used his left foot to devastating effect as his curling free-kick found the top corner of the net, past a diving Edel Bete.last_img read more

Romario to run for post of Brazilian Football Confederation president

first_imgRomario, former Brazil footballer has declared that he plans to run for the post of Brazilian Football Confederation president. His goal, to rid scandal-plagued Brazilian football with his anti-corruption drive.The 51-year-old Romario, as a senator has led congressional investigations into corruption in Brazilian soccer. His announcement comes just four days after CBF President Marco Polo del Nero was suspended for 90 days by FIFA.Del Nero is being investigated in Brazil for alleged unethical conduct. He and his two predecessors, Ricardo Teixeira and Jose Maria Marin, have been charged in the United States in the biggest corruption scandal in soccer’s history.”No one has fought so vigorously against that gang than me, and so I am a legitimate candidate,” Romario said on Instagram. “I have the qualifications for the job. My credentials are my whole contribution to soccer, on and off the field.”He blamed former FIFA President Joao Havelange, who died last year, for installing a “system” of graft in Brazilian soccer and beyond.Romario called for the prosecution of Marin, Teixeira and del Nero at the end of a congressional inquiry he led last year into corruption in Brazilian soccer.Romario helped Brazil win a record fourth World Cup title in 1994 in the United States.His popularity won him a seat as a congressman and then senator for his home state of Rio de Janeiro. He has said he plans to run for governor of Rio to reform the financially bankrupt state.last_img read more

Coppa Italia: Juventus beat Genoa to set up quarter-final clash against Torino

first_imgPaulo Dybala shone for Juventus as the Italian giants beat Genoa 2-0 on Wednesday to enter the quarter-finals of the Coppa Italia.Juventus will be facing their neighbours Torino in the quarter-final and will be looking to defend their title.Dybala, who was dropped from Juventus’ last two league games due to loss of form, scored his first goal for a month and at the perfect time.Just three minutes before half time, Dybala’s clever turn outfoxed his marker and the Argentine fired into the bottom corner of the goal.Dybala was involved in Juventus’ second goal as well as the chance set up by him eventually let to his fellow Argentine Gonzalo Higuain’s goal in the 76th minute.Torino pulled off a shock 2-1 win away to AS Roma with goals from Lorenzo De Silvestri and Simone Edera who put them 2-0 ahead.Roma forward Edin Dzeko had a penalty saved by Vanja Milinkovic-Savic before Patrik Schick pulled one back for the hosts with five minutes left.The quarter-finals will also feature a derby between AC Milan and Inter Milan while Lazio host Fiorentina and Napoli entertain Atalanta.(Courtesy: Reuters)last_img read more

Wenger praises ‘not afraid’ Nketiah

first_imgArsenal ‘He smells the right movements’ – Wenger praises Arsenal’s Nketiah for decisive double Dejan Kalinic Last updated 2 years ago 14:39 10/25/17 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) EddieNketiah - Cropped Getty Images Arsenal Arsenal v Norwich City Norwich City League Cup Arsène Wenger The Frenchman was confident the teenage forward would deliver in the EFL Cup when he threw him on in the final minutes against Norwich Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger praised Eddie Nketiah for his character and movement after the teenage forward’s match-winning performance in the Carabao Cup.Nketiah, 18, came off the bench and scored twice to lead Arsenal past Norwich City 2-1 after extra time at the Emirates Stadium on Tuesday.Arsenal 6/10 to beat Swans & O2.5 goals Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player It was the England Under 19 international’s second appearance for the first-team as he came off the bench in the final minute of the Europa League win over BATWenger said he knew the teenager was capable of delivering off the bench against Norwich and was repaid with Nketiah equalising immediately after coming on in the 85th minute.”I know he has character and is not afraid,” Wenger told a news conference.”He smells the combination movements, he can give and go and once a player has that in his game, they have always a chance.”The guys who can understand that if they give the ball somewhere and they can get it back and know where to get it back, the quality of reception is a very important quality.”I would say the quality of the reception, he has that.”84: AFC 0-1 NCFC85: @EddieNketiah9 comes on to chants of “Who?”FT: AFC 2-1 NCFCEddie who?— Arsenal FC (@Arsenal) October 24, 2017Wenger admitted he probably would not have introduced Nketiah if he had more senior options on the bench.The Frenchman said his change was purely to make Arsenal more dangerous, with Nketiah finding the winner in the 96th minute.”We lacked ideas, we lacked a little bit to create clear-cut chances,” Wenger said.”I was impressed by the defensive performance of Norwich and so you sit there on the bench and think, ‘What can we do to be a bit more dangerous?'”It was the occasion where we had to take a big gamble because there was not much time to go and I know that Eddie can score a goal.”last_img read more

Oppn flays UP govt after Centre says altering SC list beyond states

first_imgLucknow: With the Centre on Tuesday declaring the Uttar Pradesh government’s move to include 17 OBC communities into the scheduled castes list beyond the state’s power, the state opposition parties accused the Adityanath government of trying to mislead people.The state government had on June 24 directed district adminstration to issue SC certificates to 17 OBCs – Kashyap, Rajbhar, Dhivar, Bind, Kumhar, Kahar, Kewat, Nishad, Bhar, Mallah, Prajapati, Dhimar, Batham, Turha, Godia, Manjhi and Machua. Also Read – How a psychopath killer hid behind the mask of a devout laity!Responding to a Zero Hour mention by BSP member Satish Chandra Misra in Rajya Sabha, Social Justice and Empowerment Minister Thawar Chand Gehlot Tuesday said shifting one caste to another category by the Uttar Pradesh government was “not proper” and only the Parliament has the power to do so. Maintaining that the UP government move was not in accordance with the Constitution, Gehlot said if the state government wants to go ahead with its proposal, it should follow the procedure and send a proposal to the Centre. Also Read – Encounter under way in Pulwama, militant killedIn Uttar Pradesh, the BSP, which has been in the forefront of opposing the state government move, said the Adityanath government’s order was against the spirit of the Constitution and the Centre has cleared the misunderstanding over the issue. “It was an unconstitutional order and a fraud with these castes as this would have left members of these castes deprived of benefits even under the OBC category,” a senior BSP leader said on condition on anonymity. “Even the President (of India) does not have the power to tinker, alter or make changes (in the list),” BSP MP, Satish Chandra Misra told the Rajya Sabha earlier in the day.last_img read more

Trudeau warns of dangers of nationalist leaders at historic armistice gathering

first_imgPARIS — A series of international leaders used a global commemoration of the end of the First World War to warn about the risk politicians who call themselves nationalists pose to a fragile peace, in a message aimed at the American president.What started with the French president saying that nationalist leaders threaten to erase a nation’s moral values by putting their own interests first regardless of the effects on others, ended with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau saying voters will turn for easy answers and scapegoats.U.S. President Donald Trump in recent weeks described himself as a nationalist and has frequently sparred with the media, whom he has labelled as “fake news” and the enemy of the people — both of which were on display last week in a free-wheeling press conference after the U.S. midterm elections.Speaking at a peace forum organized by French President Emmanuel Macron, Trudeau said attacks on the press are a lever some use to fuel anxiety about automation of jobs, international trade and ultimately “undermine our trust in institutions and increase our cynicism.”A bulwark against that was a “robust, respected media” that is under stress, Trudeau said to a crowd of about 150 people.“Attacks on the media are not just about getting your preferred political candidate elected, for example, they are about increasing the level of cynicism that citizens have towards all authorities, towards all of the institutions that are there to protect us as citizens,” he said.“When people feel their institutions can’t protect them, they look for easy answers in populism, in nationalism, in closing borders, in shutting down trade, in xenophobia.”Macron, Trudeau and other leaders came to Paris hoping to use the 100th anniversary of the end of the First World War to renew calls to quash festering tensions across the globe.Macron warned how fragile peace can be in an age where the tensions that gave rise to four years of bloody battle, costing millions of lives, appear to be festering again. He told the assembled masses that the “traces of this war never went away.”He urged the leaders present to promise their peoples that the resurgent “old demons” would not be able to return, sowing “chaos and death.”Though Trump sat mostly stone-faced as he listened to Macron’s words, he had left by the time Trudeau began to speak at a memorial at an American military cemetery outside Paris. At the event, Trump said it was “our duty to preserve the civilization” downed soldiers fought to defend, “and to protect the peace they so nobly gave their lives to secure one century ago.”Yet at almost the same time, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, in her opening speech at the peace forum, spoke about how lack of communication and an unwillingness to compromise can have dire consequences for countries — again in a veiled message towards Trump.“There is a general sense and desire among many countries, including Canada, to do whatever is possible to sustain the institutions of the international order and practical, multilateral co-operation. And so you see that in Canada, you see that in Germany,” said Roland Paris, Trudeau’s former foreign adviser.“Macron (is) essentially making that point: that we can sustain co-operation, we must sustain co-operation.”Trudeau, who is on a 10-day trip across Europe and Asia, will come face-to-face with three of the nations sowing tension: Trump, Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping.Trudeau sat beside Putin at the peace conference and the pair briefly chatted at the opening session of Macron’s peace summit on Sunday. Trudeau’s office said he acknowledged the Russian people’s sacrifices through the two world wars and reiterated the importance of Russian representation in Paris to talk about peace.Earlier in the weekend, Trudeau spoke with Trump at a dinner Macron organized on Friday night — although government officials wouldn’t say the exact topic of conversation.Trudeau has had to navigate the mercurial American president, and talked pointedly about him on Sunday afternoon, but never mentioned Trump by name, as he is prone to do.Trump did not shake Trudeau’s hand when he arrived with wife Melania at the iconic Arc de Triomphe for the Nov. 11 ceremony. Neither Trump nor Putin walked a bit of the Champs-Elysee with other leaders after church bells rang out as the hour turned to 11 a.m. local time, marking the moment the guns fell silent across Europe a century ago.France’s ambassador to Canada described the peace forum as a way to amplify the voices of non-governmental organizations and prod political leaders present to commit to Macron’s call for peace.“If you’re not backed up by the highest political authority, nothing will happen,” Kareen Rispal said in an interview Friday.“You have to get the real commitment from the political leaders.”Rispal also said Trudeau’s appearance at the Arc de Triomphe ceremony would be a reminder of Canada’s contributions during the war, which aren’t always recognized in Europe.Some 650,000 Canadians and Newfoundlanders served in the First World War, and more than 66,000 of them lost their lives. About 172,000 more were injured.Others served behind the front lines, working with locals to aid the war effort.“We as French, we as Europeans — I think we don’t value enough the effort made by the Canadians,” Rispal said in an interview Friday.— With files from the Associated Press.Jordan Press, The Canadian Presslast_img read more

CanniMed tells shareholders to wait while it reviews Aurora offer

first_imgCanniMed Therapeutics Inc. said Wednesday it needs time to review a surprise takeover offer from a rival marijuana producer that sent its share surging on another volatile trading day for pot stocks amid speculation a wave of consolidation is coming.“We advise shareholders to take no action until such time as the board has had the opportunity to fully consider and make a recommendation regarding the unsolicited offer,” CanniMed (TSX:CMED) said in response to the bid made public by Aurora Cannabis Inc. (TSX:ACB) after the close of markets on Tuesday.Vancouver-based Aurora announced an all-share offer valuing CanniMed’s stock at up to $24 per share that it said already has support from shareholders representing 38 per cent of CanniMed’s outstanding shares.Aurora said it submitted a proposal to CanniMed’s board of directors Monday and has given the company until Friday to respond. If the board doesn’t respond, it said it plans to launch a formal takeover bid.But CanniMed said that it has not received a formal written offer from Aurora, adding it would review the terms set out in the press release and respond by the Friday deadline.CanniMed cautioned that it considered Aurora’s estimates of how much the share-exchange deal was actually worth to CanniMed shareholders to be inflated, since Aurora’s valuation per share is based on its stock price as of Nov. 14 after a 125 per cent increase over the preceding 12 trading days.Following news of the proposed deal, CanniMed’s share price shot up $4.50 or 29.4 per cent to close at $19.80, while Aurora closed down $0.19 or three per cent at $6.22.CanniMed also said it is already in talks to acquire marijuana company Newstrike Resources Ltd. (TSXV:HIP), a producer endorsed by members of rock band the Tragically Hip.Marijuana analyst Vahan Ajamian said this latest deal could spark merger and acquisition activity among the around 50 licensed producers in the burgeoning industry ahead of recreational legalization, slated for July 1.“This could spark a wave of consolidation with the larger players ‘gobbling up’ the smaller ones,” said Ajamian in a note.PI Financial Corp. analyst Jason Zandberg said he wasn’t sure if the deal would spark consolidation, but that it make sense to build scale ahead of next July.“If you can build scale, then not only can you guarantee supply numbers, but you also have a bit better negotiating power,” said Zandberg.But he said any deals would likely be shared-based ones within the industry, like Aurora’s proposal, since cannabis stocks have climbed so much in recent months.“The absolute value of the market cap of these companies would scare off a lot of outsiders from buying.”He said the deal looks to make a lot of sense from both sides, but given CanniMed’s response it could go hostile.Current valuations mean that for some companies it would make more sense to simply build their own facilities, said Chris Damas, editor of the BCMI Report.“You can build square footage at a lower price than you can buy it on the stock market, the difference is quite astonishing.”He said CanniMed offered some particular attractions to Aurora, including licensed soft oil gel capsules, a foothold in Saskatchewan and expanded facilities that haven’t yet been reflected in its financials.If Aurora’s acquisition is successful, it would boost its market capitalization to more than $3 billion and would see it serve about 40,000 active registered patients. That compares to 63,000 at Canopy Growth Corp. (TSX:WEED), Canada’s largest marijuana company.CanniMed, previously Prairie Plant Systems, was one of the first medical marijuana companies to be granted a Health Canada licence to produce in 2013.last_img read more

Israeli firm says it can turn garbage into biobased plastic

first_imgKIBBUTZ ZEELIM, Israel – Hawks, vultures and storks circle overhead as Christopher Sveen points at the heap of refuse rotting in the desert heat. “This is the mine of the future,” he beams.Sveen is chief sustainability officer at UBQ, an Israeli company that has patented a process to convert household trash, diverting waste from landfills into reusable bio-based plastic.After five years of development, the company is bringing its operations online, with hopes of revolutionizing waste management and being a driver to make landfills obsolete. It remains to be seen, however, if the technology really works and is commercially viable.UBQ operates a pilot plant and research facility on the edge of southern Israel’s Negev Desert, where it has developed its production line.“We take something that is not only not useful, but that creates a lot of damage to our planet, and we’re able to turn it into the things we use every day,” said Albert Douer, UBQ’s executive chairman. He said UBQ’s material can be used as a substitute for conventional petrochemical plastics and wood, reducing oil consumption and deforestation.UBQ has raised $30 million from private investors, including Douer, who is also chief executive of Ajover Darnel Group, an international plastics conglomerate.Leading experts and scientists serve on its advisory board, including Nobel Prize chemist Roger Kornberg, Hebrew University biochemist Oded Shoseyov, author and entrepreneur John Elkington and Connie Hedegaard, a former European Commissioner for Climate Action.The small plant can process one ton of municipal waste per hour, a relatively small amount that would not meet the needs of even a midsize city. But UBQ says that given the modularity, it can be quickly expanded.On a recent day, UBQ Chief Executive Tato Bigio stood alongside bales of sorted trash hauled in from a local landfill.He said recyclable items like glass, metals and minerals are extracted and sent for further recycling, while the remaining garbage — “banana peels, the chicken bones and the hamburger, the dirty plastics, the dirty cartons, the dirty papers” — is dried and milled into a powder.The steely grey powder then enters a reaction chamber, where it is broken down and reconstituted as a bio-based plastic-like composite material. UBQ says its closely-guarded patented process produces no greenhouse gas emissions or residual waste byproducts, and uses little energy and no water.According to the United Nations Environment Program, 5 per cent of global greenhouse gas emissions are produced by decomposing organic material in landfills. Roughly half is methane, which over two decades is 86 times as potent for global warming as carbon dioxide, according to the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.For every ton of material produced, UBQ says it prevents between three and 30 tons of CO2 from being created by keeping waste out of landfills and decomposing.UBQ says its material can be used as an additive to conventional plastics. It says 10-15 per cent is enough to make a plastic carbon-neutral by offsetting the generation of methane and carbon dioxide in landfills. It can be moulded into bricks, beams, planters, cans, and construction materials. Unlike most plastics, UBQ says its material doesn’t degrade when it’s recycled.The company says converting waste into marketable products is profitable, and likely to succeed in the long run without government subsidies.“What we do is we try to position ourselves at the end of the value chain, or at the end of the waste management hierarchy,” Sveen said. “So rather than that waste going to a landfill or being incinerated, that’s kind of our waste feedstock.”The wonder plastic isn’t without its skeptics, however. Duane Priddy, chief executive of the Plastic Expert Group, said UBQ’s claims were “too good to be true” and likened it to alchemy.“Chemists have been trying to convert lead to gold for centuries, without success,” Priddy, a former principal scientist at Dow Chemical, said in an email to The Associated Press. “Likewise, chemists have been trying to convert garbage to plastic for several decades.”UBQ said it is confident its technology will prove the skeptics wrong. “We understand that’s people’s perceptions. We hope to convince them in a professional and scientific manner,” Sveen said.Even if its technology is ultimately successful, UBQ faces questions about its long-term viability. Building additional plants could be expensive and time-consuming. It also needs to prove there is a market for its plastic products. The company said it is negotiating deals with major customers, but declined to identify them or say when the contracts would go into effect.The U.N. Environment Program has made solid waste disposal a central issue to combatting pollution worldwide. Landfills contaminate air, water and soil, and take up limited land and resources. A December 2017 report by the international body devoted five of its 50 anti-pollution measures to reducing and processing solid waste.“Every year, an estimated 11.2 billion tons of solid waste are collected worldwide,” the organization says. “The solution, in the first place, is the minimization of waste. Where waste cannot be avoided, recovery of materials and energy from waste as well as remanufacturing and recycling waste into usable products should be the second option.”Israel lags behind other developed countries in waste disposal. The country of roughly 8 million people generated 5.3 million metric tons of garbage in 2016, according to the Environment Ministry. Over 80 per cent of that trash ended up in increasingly crowded landfills. A third of Israel’s landfill garbage is food scraps, which decompose and produce greenhouse gases like methane and carbon dioxide.To UBQ, that means a nearly limitless supply of raw material.“The fact is that the majority of waste goes to a landfill or is leaked into our natural environments because there simply aren’t holistic and economically viable technologies out there,” said Sveen.last_img read more

UN makes new appeal for rich countries to end trade practices hurting

“If trade is to serve as an engine of economic growth and poverty alleviation, countries both in the North as well as the South need to broaden their production base on a fair competitive basis,” FAO Assistant Director-General Hartwig de Haen said in remarks prepared for delivery on the second day of the 5th Ministerial Conference of the World Trade Organization (WTO) in Cancún, Mexico.“Food and agricultural trade is vital for food security, poverty alleviation and growth,” Mr. de Haen added, noting that food imports contribute to the supply of basic foodstuffs in many of the world’s poorest countries while agricultural exports were an important source of rural income and foreign exchange.Many poorer countries that rely primarily on agriculture for their economic development will become increasingly dependent on aid, slip deeper into debt and face major food shortages unless they improve their competitiveness in agricultural products both domestically and internationally through investment and fairer trade, FAO warned.The agency made 12 recommendations in a prepared statement, including tariff de-escalation, effective measures to counter possible negative effects of trade reforms in the least developed and net food importing countries, simplicity in international trade rules and increased support to help developing countries become more competitive in trade.FAO noted that some 840 million people are chronically undernourished, 800 million of them in developing countries, and more than 70 per cent of the world’s extremely poor and undernourished live in rural areas, with agriculture representing the main source of income for about 2.5 billion people in developing countries alone.“The markets for temperate zone products and basic food commodities continue to be substantially distorted due to government subsidies and protection, particularly in rich countries. Export subsidies on products exported by developed countries continue,” Mr. de Haen said.“Enormous untapped agricultural potential exists in developing countries to meet the twin challenges of hunger and poverty. What we need is a renewed focus on effective North-South cooperation so that available resources are used efficiently,” he added. read more

Bernanke defends bond purchases to support the economy but said Fed can

AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email Bernanke defends bond purchases to support the economy but said Fed can only do so much by News Staff Posted Jul 18, 2012 2:02 pm MDT WASHINGTON – Chairman Ben Bernanke told lawmakers Wednesday that the Federal Reserve’s efforts to bolster growth have helped lift the U.S. economy out of the Great Recession. But he acknowledged that growth remains weak and the Fed can only do so much.“I don’t think it is the case that there has been no progress. The recovery has been slower than we like but clearly we have made progress,” Bernanke told the House Financial Services Committee.Bernanke was on the Hill to deliver his twice-a-year report to Congress on the state of the economy. But he spent part of the hearing defending the Fed’s previous two rounds of large-scale bond purchases against Republican criticism.The economy has weakened since the start of the year, and Bernanke said the Fed is prepared to take further action if unemployment stays high. He didn’t specify what steps the Fed might take or whether any action was imminent.His comments were similar to those he made Tuesday to the Senate Banking Committee on Tuesday.Many economists interpreted the remarks to mean the Fed will likely launch a third round of bond purchases, perhaps in the fall. That’s because few expect the unemployment rate, which was 8.2 per cent last month, to fall much further by then.The bond purchases seek to lower long-term interest rates and encourage more borrowing and spending.Bernanke noted that the economy, after growing at a 2.5 per cent annual rate in the second half of 2011, slowed to roughly 2 per cent from January through March. And it likely weakened further in the April-June period.Manufacturing has slowed. Consumers are spending less. And job growth has slumped to an average of 75,000 a month in the April-June quarter from 226,000 a month from January through March.But Republicans on the panel questioned the Fed’s use of large-scale asset purchases to lower long-term interest rates. They say the bond purchases have increased the risk of inflation without providing much help to the slumping economy.“We have anemic growth, probably half of what it should be by historic standards,” said Rep. Jeb Hensarling, R-Texas. Hensarling questioned what another round of bond purchases would do.Bernanke said the first effort in the middle of 2009 helped lift the economy out of the recession, which ended in June 2009.The second, launched in Nov. 2010, kept the economy from suffering a bout of deflation, he said. Deflation is a prolonged period of falling prices which the United States hasn’t seen since the Great Depression.“I think the previous efforts did have productive effects,” he said. read more

The 9 at 9 Sunday

first_imgEVERY MORNING, brings you the nine stories you need to know a little before 9am.1. #WET WET WET: Heavy rain hit parts of the country last night, and a weather warning will remain in place for Leinster until 3pm.2. #GSOC: Gardaí have been accused by the Garda Ombudsman of withholding information about the shooting of a suspect in 2009, The Sunday Times reports. A report obtained by the paper details that gardaí “repeatedly refused” to furnish certain details of the fatal incident.3. #SOCIAL MEDIA: The Irish State requested that Twitter withhold tweets from 13 accounts last year, a new report shows. The social network said no in all cases.4. #IRAN: A passenger plane has crashed into a residential area shortly after take-off in Tehran. Local news agencies are reporting that as many as 50 people have died.5. #BUBBLE: Property developer Paddy McKillen has told the Sunday Independent that a “fast-track plan” is needed to build more houses to end the housing crisis. He said inaction by Nama and the Government is to blame for growing property prices.6. #IRAQ: Britain has airdropped humanitarian aid for besieged Iraqis, AFP reports. US forces “successfully (conducted) four airstrikes to defend Yazidi civilians being indiscriminately attacked” near Sinjar, the US military said last night.7. #SPLISH SPLASH: Irish Water’s running costs could be more than twice the average of similar companies in the United Kingdom. The Sunday Business Post reports that the projected costs are 2.6 times the levels in Scotland.8. #BURIALS: More than 3,000 people were buried in unmarked paupers’ graves last year, according to figures obtained by the Irish Mail on Sunday, as they could not afford their own funeral. It has sparked calls for the Church to run its own funeral and undertaker service.9. #UKRAINE: President Petro Poroshenko has said he is ready to led an aid mission into the rebel stronghold of Lugansk, but only if it is an unarmed international team entering the country through Kiev-controlled borders.last_img read more

Elderly monk on the run as Thai police investigate multimillion euro scam

first_img Thai Buddhist monks pray and gather at Wat Dhammakaya temple. Image: Sakchai Lalit Image: Sakchai Lalit Thai Buddhist monks pray and gather at Wat Dhammakaya temple. Elderly monk on the run as Thai police investigate multi-million euro scam Police found a 1.5 kilometre tunnel, split into two routes, dug under the UFO-like temple that dominates the site. 14,867 Views Short URL Friday 17 Feb 2017, 6:59 AM Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this articlecenter_img 12 Comments By AFP Share Tweet Email Feb 17th 2017, 6:59 AM THAI POLICE HAVE uncovered secret tunnels running underneath a space-age temple of the controversial Dhammakaya Buddhist sect, as their manhunt for an elusive elderly monk accused of massive embezzlement entered a second day.Thousands of officers are involved in the search for the 72-year-old monk Phra Dhammachayo, who is believed to be holed up in the vast Wat Dhammakaya temple grounds on the outskirts of Bangkok.The former abbot, who founded the breakaway Buddhist order in 1970 and has marshalled its prodigious rise, is accused of money laundering and accepting embezzled funds worth $33 million from the jailed owner of a cooperative bank.But in an increasingly bizarre cat-and-mouse game, cops were frustrated for a second day running as they were led by orange-robed monks through endless rooms and hallways in the 1,000-acre site.On Thursday, police found a 1.5 kilometre tunnel, split into two routes, dug under the UFO-like temple that dominates the site, which may have been used by the ex-abbot as a place to hide.Cat and mouse“It only has one entrance but it does not go outside of the temple,” Police Colonel Worranan Srilum, deputy spokesman for the DSI (Thailand equivalent of the FBI) told reporters.They also searched a sick bay used by the former abbot, but instead of finding him, they pulled back an orange robe covering several pillows arranged to look like a sleeping person.“The Dhammakaya temple area is sprawling so it will have to take time to search. We can’t find him yet, but our intelligence insists that he is still inside (the) temple,” he added.The sweep of the powerful and ultra-rich Wat Dhammakaya temple comes after Thailand’s junta chief invoked special powers to put its sprawling compound under military control.Temple officials say the ex-abbot is innocent and deny knowledge of his whereabouts.Thailand’s secular authorities are normally reluctant to intervene in the affairs of the clergy in the Buddhist-majority country.But the Dhammakaya sect has long been in the firing line. Critics accuse the temple of promoting a pay-your-way to nirvana philosophy, burnished with “cultish” mass shows of devotion and a sophisticated PR machine.The temple is also mired in the kingdom’s treacherous politics, with rumoured links to ex-premier Thaksin Shinawatra, who was ousted in a 2006 coup and still hated by the Bangkok elite and their military allies.© – AFP 2017Read: Putin apologises after Russian air strike accidentally kills three Turkish soldiersRead: ‘Do you speak Arabic?’: How the US bungled its online fight against ISlast_img read more

Police probe London murder where gang killed man with samurai sword and

first_img Share4 Tweet Email Feb 23rd 2019, 2:50 PM Police probe London murder where gang killed man with samurai sword and gun The incident happened last night. Short URL Saturday 23 Feb 2019, 2:50 PM Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article 10 Comments center_img Wood Green tube station. Image: Google Maps Image: Google Maps POLICE IN LONDON have appealed for information following the murder of a man in the Wood Green area of north London last night.Detective Chief Inspector Katherine Goodwin of the Met’s Homicide and Major Crime Command said that the men who attacked the 19-year-old victim were armed with an array of weapons including a samurai sword and a gun.DCI Goodwin said: “This murder took place at a busy time of night in a heavy footfall area. I know that there are people who either witnessed the incident or who can assist with filling in the gaps in the information we already have.“My team has established that the attackers were armed with at least one firearm, knives and a samurai sword. Some, or possibly all, were riding bikes.“I know that people may be reluctant or afraid to speak with police, but making a single call could help to remove dangerous, violent individuals from your area and all information provided will be treated in the strictest confidence.“If you don’t want to call police call the independent charity Crimestoppers – they won’t even ask for your name, but please, if you have information, do make the call.”Police were called to Vincent Road, Wood Green, at 8.10pm to reports of a group of people fighting. Officers and the London Ambulance Service attended the scene of the incident.Two men, believed to be aged 19 and 20, were found injured. They were taken to an east London Hospital,The 19-year-old injured male had suffered stab wounds. He died in hospital shortly afterwards. The 20-year old injured male suffered stab wounds and a gunshot wound. His injuries are not life threatening. By Garreth MacNamee 19,004 Views Wood Green tube station.last_img read more

Selfdefense class raises funds for acid attack victim

first_imgBethany Storro’s parents, Nancy and Joe Neuwelt, after cancelling a planned appearance on The Oprah Winfrey Show, attended a women’s self-defense class at Anytime Fitness at Esther Short Park on Friday evening — a fundraiser the club’s operators organized to help pay costs from Storro’s facial burns.Storro, 28, was found suffering from acid burns to her face about 7:15 p.m. on Aug. 30, on Columbia Street just north of West Eighth Street and the park. She told rescuers and police that a woman she didn’t know walked up to her and threw acid in her face.As Vancouver police officers and Major Crimes Unit detectives began their investigation of the alleged attack, Storro was treated for facial injuries at the Oregon Burn Center at Legacy Emanuel Medical Center in Portland. She and her family held press conferences at the hospital and Storro later was released.Outside the fitness club Friday evening, the Neuwelts stood before news cameras before the class and thanked a long list of people and businesses that helped raise money for Storro’s medical treatments.“I just want to say ‘thank you’ to the community,” Nancy Neuwelt said. “It’s been incredible.”As for Storro, her mother said, “She’s doing better and she’s amazing. I took her out for a little bit today. We went to get a coffee and get out in the fresh air. She’s doing better, and people were coming up and just encouraging her.”last_img read more

Boy Scouts visit Coral Gables fire station to learn about the job

first_imgCORAL GABLES, FLA. (WSVN) – Firefighters in Coral Gables came together to show a group of Boy Scouts how the job is done.The Boy Scouts visited Fire Station Number One to get an idea of what they do to protect the community everyday.The scouts teamed up to man the heavy fire hose as they took at the front handling the direction of the water spray.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.last_img

From homemakers to Army officers 600km allwoman car rally raises awareness about

first_imgCovering over 600km from Delhi to Chandigarh via the hills of Dehradun, Paonta Sahib, Nahan, Sirmaur and Morni Hills, the Women Car Rally this year was a huge success. It took place between March 30 and 31. The rally included the cars passing through all types of terrain in 16 districts of two Union Territories and four states. Nearly 150 dynamic and highly spirited women from very different backgrounds including the Army, Air Force, the corporate sector, media agencies and homemakers participated in the car rally. They demonstrated notable sportsmanship, a penchant for adventure and excellent driving skills to such an extent that there were no accidents due to their driving skills. The women also portrayed a strict adherence to road safety instructions and professional motorsports regulations.The theme of the rally, “Wheeling Women to Power” was promoted through the event. The organisers also made sure to incorporate the topic of ‘menstrual hygiene’ into their event. The Indian Air Force team of Wing Commander Deepti Upadhyay and Flight Lieutenant Nishta won the first prize in the All Women Amateur group. The rally was conducted in Time-Speed-Distance format as per the regulations of FSCMI.last_img read more