On the Blogs: Trump’s Fake News on Coal

first_imgOn the Blogs: Trump’s Fake News on Coal FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Wamsted on Energy:John Adams, our second president, generally gets credit for this wonderful aphorism, but regardless of who was the first to say it, the observation itself is what matters: You simply cannot wish away facts. This came to mind earlier this week when I looked at the Energy Information Administration’s monthly electric power overview (which can be found here); it’s a publication that only the geekiest of energy wonks would ever read, particularly on a regular basis. However, dry as it may be, it does one thing exceedingly well: It presents facts, just as they are—not as people may want them to be.One of the many such facts that caught my eye this month concerns electricity generation from coal, that shiny black rock that seems to be the moving force behind all the Trump administration’s energy and environmental policies. ‘The war on coal is over,’ his minions mouth repeatedly. ‘We are going to bring the jobs back,’ the president assures miners at every opportunity.Problem is, facts are stubborn things. In the EIA review, which covers the first nine months of 2017, coal-fired electricity generation fell compared to the comparable year-earlier period. To be fair, it didn’t drop by much, sliding 1.5 percent to 919,805 thousand megawatt-hours from 934,267 thousand mwh a year ago. However, if the war is over and the jobs are coming back, then there should have been no slide at all; indeed, there should have been an increase.The slide in coal-fired generation also pushed coal production for the sector, which accounts for the vast majority of U.S. coal consumption, down during the first nine months. Overall, just over 504 million tons of coal were used to generate electricity, down from 509 million in 2016—which was the lowest production year for the industry since 1979. Hardly the turnaround the Trump administration repeatedly trumpets.What the administration definitely doesn’t trumpet in its incessant tweets and coal-dominated decision-making, is that during this same nine-month period, generation from non-emitting wind and solar jumped 13.6 percent, climbing to 284,584 mwh from 250,482 mwh in 2016. Combined with hydro, renewables generated just over 525,000 mwh of electricity annually for the first nine months of the year, within hailing distance of the nation’s nuclear sector, which has generated just under 600,000 mwh so far this year.And while the administration clearly is not a fan of renewables, more growth in this sector is just around the corner. The American Wind Energy Association says 84,000 MW of wind capacity are installed across the United States, with another 25,000 MW under construction. Similarly, the Solar Energy Industries Association reports that 47,000 MW of solar capacity has been installed in the U.S., with another 21,000 MW of utility-scale solar generation currently in the construction pipeline.As much as Trump and his backers like to blame renewables and the environmental community for the downfall of coal, the stubborn little fact is that the war, such as it was, against coal was waged, and won, by natural gas. From an expensive afterthought used largely just as a peaking resource during periods of high demand in the early 2000s, natural gas has taken ever-larger chunks of the electric generation market since then. From less than 20 percent of the total in 2001 (when coal’s share was roughly 50 percent), natural gas’ share of the market has climbed steadily, reaching 34 percent in 2016 and topping coal as the largest single source of electricity in the United States.More: The Facts Tell The Story: Coal Comeback Is Nothing But A Trump Delusionlast_img read more

Uruguay and Ecuador strengthen ties in fight against drug trafficking

first_img Organized crime groups not only transport illegal drugs through Uruguay and send them north to Mexico and the United States, they also sell drugs domestically. About 180,000 people in Uruguay consume illegal drugs, according to federal government statistics. That is about 5.5 percent of the country’s population of 3.5 million people. About 3,000 inmates are imprisoned in Uruguayan prisons for drug trafficking offenses. Drug use impacts Uruguayan society in many ways. For example, drug use has had a negative impact on public education. The Health Commission of the Uruguayan Senate recently conducted a hearing on public education. Public education officials told senators that drug use is one of the reasons some public school students are not learning as much as they should. Drug trafficking leads to other crimes Security forces in the Dominican Republic and Chile have achieved important successes in recent months in fighting organized crime. For example, in Chile, between January and mid-November 2013, security forces have seized 80 percent more drugs than they did during the same time period in 2012. Authorities attribute much of the success to the OS-7 anti-narcotics unit of the Chilean National Police, which is known as the Carabiniers. The increase in the amount of drugs seized by Chilean security forces in 2013 reflects increased activity by international drug traffickers, and the high level of professionalism of Chilean police, according to security analyst Jeremy McDermott, director of InSight Crime, an independent research institution with headquarters in Medellin, Colombia. In the Dominican Republic, authorities have lowered the homicide rate and improved overall public safety, thanks to a series of strong police initiatives. The homicide rate in the Caribbean country is down to 16.6 killings per 100,000 inhabitants. The homicide rate has not been that low since 2003, according to Manuel Castro Castillo, chief of the Dominican Republic National Police. International cooperation Ecuador uses technology to fight drug trafficking Drug use in Uruguay Uruguay and Ecuador recently agreed to strengthen their ties in the countries’ joint battle against international drug trafficking. The two nations agreed to share information and to collaborate in the fight against organized crime syndicates. The countries reached agreements to “reinforce and strengthen” their bilateral relations on a number of issues, including cooperation and the exchange of information to develop new approaches to combat drug trafficking. Uruguayan Vice Chancellor Luis Porto and his Ecuadorian counterpart, Marco Albuja, issued a joint press statement expressing “the need to seek different approaches to combat the problem” of international drug trafficking. The two countries signed an agreement on cooperation and exchange of information in order to “learn from each other’s practices.” Countries throughout Latin America are battling drug trafficking and related criminal enterprises. For example, in recent years, the number of kidnapping and extortion cases has increased in Colombia, Mexico, and other Latin American countries. In Colombia, many of these offenses are committed by organized crime groups, such as the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) and the National Liberation Army (ELN). In El Salvador and Guatemala, the street gangs Mara Salvatrucha, which is also known as MS-13, and Barrio 18 are responsible for many kidnappings and extortions, according to security forces in those countries. The Lorenzana drug trafficking organization and the Mexican organized crime groups Los Zetas and the Sinaloa Cartel, which is led by fugitive kingpin Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, also operate in Guatemala. center_img In October 2013, the Ecuadorian Navy and civilian police forces collaborated to seize 799 kilos of cocaine in the country’s territorial waters, drugs which were destined for Central America and ultimately the United States. Ecuadorian security forces used advanced technology to locate and seize the boat that was carrying the cocaine. On Oct. 13, the Unit Against Organized Crime (ULCO) of the National Police alerted the Navy of a Panamanian-flagged vessel which was suspected of transporting illegal drugs off the Ecuadorian coast. The Navy sent several drones into the air to track down the boat. The Navy uses unmanned aircraft to track down suspicious boats and gather information. The drones located the suspicious boat, named “Doria,” about 130 nautical miles southwest of the port of Manta. The Manta Naval Air Station transmitted the location of the Doria to a Coast Guard boat named the “Isla Santa Cruz.” The Coast Guard vessel, commanded by Lt. Lenin Alvarado Flores, intercepted the Doria. Coast Guard authorities boarded the Doria, and found nearly 800 kilograms of cocaine wrapped in 700 packages. Coast Guard authorities detained the Doria’s five-person crew. National Police anti-narcotics investigators had learned a transnational drug trafficking organization was operating in the region, smuggling drugs in large boats, a few days before the Coast Guard intercepted the Doria. The National Police provided the information to the Navy, authorities said. Uruguay-Ecuador agreements By Dialogo November 21, 2013 Colombian Defense Minister Juan Carlos Pinzon recently visited the military officials of seven Central American and Caribbean countries to discuss how security forces throughout the region could cooperate on security matters. In late September 2013, Pinzon met with military officials in Panama, Honduras, El Salvador, Jamaica, the Dominican Republic and Trinidad and Tobago. Pinzon and officials from the other countries discussed the possibility of increasing opportunities for the Colombian military and National Police to fight international drug trafficking and other crimes, such as extortion and kidnapping. International cooperation is crucial in the fight against kidnapping and extortion, according to Colombian Gen. Humberto Guatibonza, director of the Unified Action Groups for Liberty, or GAULA, Colombia’s anti-kidnapping and anti-extortion unit. The GAULA is respected around the world for its effectiveness in combatting organized crime. In Honduras, El Salvador, and Guatemala, “kidnapping has become a major transnational scourge to the point we simply have to join forces,” Guatibonza said. In addition to reaching agreements to cooperate in the battle against international drug trafficking, Ecuadorian and Uruguayan officials also discussed other important aspects of the two countries’ bilateral relationship. Ecuador and Uruguay agreed to support the Union of South American Nations (UNASUR), the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) and the Inter-American Human Rights System. Officials from the two countries also discussed the importance of developing information technology in the region and, sharing scientific and technological developments Security successes last_img read more

Deagon’s ultimate outdoor entertainment area

first_imgA new kitchen gives the house a modern take on things.Inside the house are classic Queensland features from polished timber floorboards, VJ walls and picture rails. There are three bedrooms, two with built-in wardrobes, and a shared bathroom.There is a carport, and two sheds also on the 405sq m block.Video Player is loading.Play VideoPlayNext playlist itemMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 0:51Loaded: 0%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -0:51 Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedCaptionscaptions settings, opens captions settings dialogcaptions off, selectedQuality Levels720p720pHD576p576p432p432p270p270pAutoA, selectedAudio Tracken (Main), selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.This is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.Close Modal DialogThis is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.PlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 0:00Loaded: 0%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -0:00 Playback Rate1xFullscreenStarting your hunt for a dream home00:51 The front of the cottage has been given a facelift.“The windows, believe it or not, were what I fell in love with,” Ms Henwood said.More from newsFor under $10m you can buy a luxurious home with a two-lane bowling alley5 Apr 2017Military and railway history come together on bush block24 Apr 2019“They’re traditional Queenslander windows … completely different from what I have at home.” Chill out in here this Australia Day — chuck some tunes on the TV and snags on the barbie.IT IS the little things we take for granted that draw interstate buyers to character homes.Hailing from Melbourne, the character of the quaint Queenslander cottage at 24 Albury St, Deagon, was what attracted Melissa Henwood.center_img Indoors are aspects of a traditional Queenslander.Ms Henwood and her partner spent time putting a modern flavour on the house, while maintaining character features and adding a giant entertainment deck on the back — which has an outdoor kitchen and a wall-mount for a television.“We increased the size, created a bigger outdoor living area, new front veranda and renovated inside completely,” Ms Henwood said.last_img read more

Alumna speaks on Disney consumer products career

first_imgLasdon shared her experience as an undergraduate at Annenberg, especially as a senior who was unsure whether she would have a job after college. She advised students to be confident in their skill sets and consider venturing into career paths they have not considered.  Ally Chen, a sophomore majoring in communication, said she related to Lasdon’s personal experience as an undergraduate at USC and appreciated the advice Lasdon gave on exploring career options after graduation.  Vice President of Softlines and Franchise for Disney Animation, Pixar and Princess Melissa Lasdon discussed her experience working with brands and filmmakers to create products that reflect the company film franchise Tuesday.  Lasdon encouraged students to find academic and professional mentors to help guide them through their next steps. Lasdon started the conversation by sharing her experience applying to a Disney internship through a career fair on Trousdale Parkway her senior year. After interviewing with the company and receiving an offer, she considered rejecting the position, but her boss at the public relations firm she was working for at the time encouraged her to accept it. “I said, ‘Hey, Disney called. They’ve offered me this job, I’m going to turn it down. What do you think?’” Lasdon said. “And [my boss] looked at me, and I will never forget this for the rest of my life: ‘You will learn more at Disney in six months than you did four years in college. You should go take the job and call me when you’re done’ … That was the moment that made me decide it’s OK to take the risk.” Melissa Lasdon discussed her experience working with filmmakers on creating consumer products for Disney franchises. (Aisdan Niswender | Daily Trojan) Lasdon also gave advice to students on building their resumes. She said that when evaluating job applications, she looks for individuals who would complement her team with applicable skills such as social media experience. She urged students to be prepared to portray their resume skills during in-person interviews.  More than 50 students attended the event at Wallis Annenberg Hall to learn about the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism alumna’s career experiences as part of the Annenberg Career and Development office’s Lunch with a Leader series.  “When you build your resume, there’s obviously key words … but it’s also making sure that you can speak to it in the interview,” Lasdon said. “Make sure it’s things that you are passionate about.” “Mentorship is critical,” Lasdon said. “It shouldn’t stop when you leave ‘SC. Having mentors [makes] such a big difference. I can’t tell you how many people I know have gotten jobs because of their mentors and have come out of moments of ‘can I do this?’ … It’s not about an abundance of [mentors]. It’s about the right ones.” “I can really empathize with … the anxiety or fear about a nonfuture after graduation,” Chen said. “I think what she said about her experience really encouraged me to view myself with a growth mindset because … it’s OK if I don’t know things right now.” “I was so worried and set on [a career in public relations],” Lasdon said. “There are so many tracks. There’s so many things to do, and be open to those and have the confidence — you’re going to land [a job].” Lasdon said her interest in consumer products attracted her to a franchise role at the Walt Disney Company. She said she especially enjoys extending viewers’ Disney film experience through consumer products such as T-shirts and figurines, a job that she accomplishes in tandem with filmmakers.  “I always looked for [ways to help the company] and I think that was part of how I was saying to [Disney that] I want to stay,” Lasdon said. “When I started to feel like I’m doing my job really well and the feedback from them is, ‘You’ve got this,’ I [would respond with], ‘Can I take something else on?’ My personal philosophy is doing the next job before you get it. After interning at Disney for five months, Lasdon received a part-time job at the company. Six months later, she was offered a full-time entry-level job in the consumer products division. Lasdon said she had these opportunities not only because she was in the right place at the right time but also because she took initiative, independently picking up extra tasks. “Being able to work with filmmakers is pretty amazing,” Lasdon said. “I get the opportunity to sit with them sometimes, and I’m in awe of their talent, and I feel very privileged to be trusted with how [we are going to] create a great product collection … that reflects what you’re seeing on screen.”last_img read more