Help by sharing this information In a letter addressed to Vietnamese minister of Public Security, general lieutenant Le Minh Huong, Reporters without Borders (RSF – Reporters Sans Frontières) protested against the roundup and placement under house arrest of the journalist and dissident Bui Minh Quoc. RSF considers this measure as equivalent to an imprisonment since it deprives the dissident of his freedom and his right to express himself. “Once again, the Vietnamese government is violating the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights it had ratified in September 1982, and whose article 19 guarantees freedom of expression”, affirmed Robert Ménard, General secretary for the organisation. Therefore, RSF demands the end of the placement under house arrest for Bui Minh Quoc and his colleague Ha Sy Phu, under house arrest since March 2001, and the immediate release of the journalist Nguyen Dinh Huy, imprisoned since 1993. According to the information gathered by RSF, journalist and dissident Bui Minh Quoc, was placed under arrest in his home of Dalat (south of the country), on 12 January 2002. That measure follows his roundup in the train station of Thanh Tri (suburb of Hanoi), on 8 January 2002. He had then been questioned for three days by the police who had seized more than three hundred documents regarded as “reactionary” by the authorities. The day before, Bui Minh Quoc had met a group of dissidents from Hanoi.But according to a Vietnamese journalist who took refuge in France, the roundup and placement under house arrest of Bui Minh Quoc are connected to the investigation he had led for more than a month, in the Northern country, on the situation around these borders with China. Indeed, dissidents regularly denounce concessions, mostly in terms of territory, granted to Beijing authorities by the government of Hanoi. Bui Minh Quoc had gone to these provinces on a motorcycle, to collect testimonies on the situation. Among other things, the police seized several notebooks and picture films. RSF_en April 22, 2021 Find out more Organisation April 27, 2021 Find out more News VietnamAsia – Pacific News to go further News Receive email alerts April 7, 2021 Find out more Vietnam sentences journalist Tran Thi Tuyet Dieu to eight years in prison VietnamAsia – Pacific January 22, 2002 – Updated on January 20, 2016 The journalist Bui Minh Quoc under house arrest again in Dalat News Bui Minh Quoc, member of the group of dissidents from Dalat, had already been placed under house arrest from April 1997 until the end of 1999 for having militated in favour of press freedom. That sanction forbids him to leave his neighbourhood and meet anybody without official authorisation. His telephone is cut off, his home guarded by policemen and his family under watch. Follow the news on Vietnam RSF laureates support jailed Vietnamese journalist Pham Doan Trang Three more independent reporters arrested in Vietnam
Enter the Vortex. Love the Vortex.The Christmas season just keeps getting better. First, you had the release of Cold Mountain Winter Ale, a ridiculously popular holiday beer from Highland Brewing that flies off the shelves faster than the Elf on the Shelf heading to the North Pole. Now, we get to look forward to Pisgah Brewing releasing its annual winter brew, Vortex. The annual Pisgah Brewing Vortex is typically a dark, rich, high gravity beer. This year, they’re releasing Pisgah Brewing Vortex II Russian Imperial Stout. And they’ve collaborated with French Broad Chocolate Factory to add crazy delicious cocoa nibs.Mmmm…nibs.Half of the Pisgah Brewing Vortex II batch will get the nibs, the other half will be released “naked.” Both will be released in an annoyingly limited amounts of 22 ounce bottles. The release party is set for Dec. 20. Hit the brewery directly, or be prepared to hunt stores around Asheville for the beautiful “deuce deuce” bottles from Pisgah.
A new study from The Australian National University (ANU) has shown the impact phosphate mining is having on coral reefs.The study looked at coral reefs around Christmas Island, where there’s been extensive phosphate mining for around 100 years.Lead researcher Dr Jennie Mallela says in areas near the island’s mining ‘hot spots’ the reef showed high levels of pollution.This pollution has caused a slowdown in reef growth and diversity.“The major problem is sediment pollution from the phosphate mine. On a healthy reef, the sediment will be made from reef organisms – including worn down shells and bits of coral,” Dr Mallela said.“If you have a lot of run off and pollution, the sediment becomes dark and quite sticky. It actually smothers and sticks to the reef organisms, and can kill them.“It also clouds up the water column, so it stops the light from penetrating down. Coral is part plant, part animal – the plant component needs to photosynthesise, so if the pollution reduces the light levels on the reef you take away part of its feeding regime.”At heavily polluted sites, the researchers also found fewer ‘branching’ coral species.“They’re the coral species that juvenile fish like to live in; they’re the ones that give a lot of structural complexity to the reef. They were missing at the really polluted sites,” Dr Mallela said.“There’s also a type of hard, pink algae that is really important for the recruitment of baby corals. The levels of that algae were really, really low, if it was there at all.”Dr Mallela says mine operators need to look at better storage and waste management options.“The most heavily polluted site was where they store all the phosphate to dry. Obviously they could put in some kind of physical barriers or erosion control to stop that phosphate running off into the reef,” she said.“If they’re mining the phosphate for fertiliser to sell, it doesn’t make sense for the phosphate to be washing off into the ocean. It makes sense to have good management strategies in place not only for the environment, but for the business too.”The results of this study could hold some important lessons for other mine sites across Australia as well.“What goes into our rivers runs downhill and will probably end up in the ocean. So you have to be really careful about what you’re allowing to enter into waterways, and restrict the amount of contaminated sediment that ends up in them,” Dr Mallela said.Despite this warning, there were some positives to come out of the study. Dr Mallela found the damage was contained to certain areas around Christmas Island.“Because of the shape of the island and the steeply sloping reefs, the pollution was very site specific, so you have healthy reefs further down the coastline,” she said.“Despite the fact that we showed a lot of localised mining damage to the reefs, the non-mining impacted reefs are actually some of the healthiest Australian reefs that we’ve seen in terms of coral cover.“They did bleach in 2016, but this is actually a good news story – we’ve seen them start to recover.“It basically shows we do have reefs which have the resilience to recover and continue to grow.”The research has been published in the journal Science of The Total Environment.
24 June 2015South Africa is to get its first wind farm built through a not-for-profit organisation in partnership with land owners and farmers in Wesley, a rural area of the Eastern Cape.The project will be jointly developed by Just Energy, the NPO, and InnoWind, a subsidiary of EDF Energies Nouvelles. Just Energy’s unique business model enables it to re-invest a substantial portion of the revenues it earns from developing the project back into equity for the local community to own.The partnership was selected as a preferred bidder by the Department of Energy under the fourth round of its highly regarded Renewable Energy Independent Power Producers Procurement Programme (REIPPPP).“We started Just Energy with the belief that if clean energy projects were to be distributed around the country, then there was a fantastic opportunity for low income communities to be involved in the ownership of those projects, so that some of the income created would stay in the local economy and help to build those communities,” said Neil Townsend, the chief executive of the NPO.“We are really excited to have the opportunity to take this approach forward on the project we started in Wesley in a rural part of the former Ciskei homeland area.”Former homelandsIt is the first renewable energy project to be selected in either the Transkei or Ciskei of the former homelands areas.“This is an important first step in a multibillion-rand procurement programme that has so far seen no renewable energy projects developed on community land in the former homelands,” said Martin Webb, chief executive of InnoWind, “and one which we believe will open the door to more renewable energy projects in some of the less economically developed rural areas of our country.”The other partner in the project is a community of small-holder land owners and farmers on whose lands the wind farm will be built. They will receive long-term financial returns from the project.“We wanted to use a model of ‘real ownership’ for this project for the participating community,” said Townsend. “What sets this project apart is it sits on land owned by local community landowners and farmers. This is a unique approach for the sector but we hope the social benefit that flows from it will pave the way for others to follow, particularly in rural areas such as in the former homelands, one of the few areas in South Africa where local communities hold land.”Joint ventureJust Energy was initially established through charitable investments by the Bank of America Foundation and Oxfam.“We are pleased that Just Energy’s innovative model for delivering clean energy projects has been recognised and accepted by the South African government,” said Purna Saggurti, the chairman of global corporate and investment banking at Bank of America Merrill Lynch.“While this investment preceded our new Catalytic Finance Initiative, our partnership with Just Energy is a terrific example of how that initiative can leverage philanthropic dollars to mobilise capital from other sources to deliver both financial returns for investors and strong sustainable development benefits for the local communities.”The project is 33 megawatts (MW) in size and when built will feature 10 of the tallest wind turbines in Africa. It is expected to be operational towards the end of 2017.In early June, the Department of Energy extended the REIPPPP allocation a further 13 solar photovoltaic and wind projects with a collective capacity of 1 084MW. This was additional to the 13 round four projects selected in April with a combined capacity of 1 121MW.SAinfo reporter
Bungee Labs unveiled the Bungee Connect on-demand development environment at the Web 2.0 Expo in San Francisco in mid-April. The new platform targets small and medium sized businesses, allowing them to quickly create highly-scalable Web 2.0 applications based on APIs from Google, Salesforce, Amazon, eBay, Microsoft, PayPal, RealNetworks and others. Dana Gardner is calling the combination of SaaS, Services and focus on Developer requirement SDDS.One thing sure to attract attention is their cost model. Bungee provides the platform and infrastructure. It is serving as a ‘computing utility’ — and you only pay for it when you yourself can make money from the application you create. Developers aren’t charged to use or test their application, only after the application is turned on for commercial business.This is yet another example of a SaaS ecosystem, but compared to Salesforce Apex and NetSuite, it is much more vendor-neutral in focus. It is unique in the on-demand developer environment that it provides. It doesn’t require developer setups on client machines. There are no web servers to set up, no libraries to install, patch and manage. The developer works through the browser and can deploy the application from the browser.Bungee combines Web 2.0 technologies so that applications can be written that bind Ajax controls to the developer’s pages and forms. The controls are designed to use non-browser-specific controls so that the application will run with Internet Explorer, Firefox and Safari. Here is an overview diagram of Bungee from the Bungee Connect Website:
The Mahindra Quanto Compact SUV, launched recently in India, is all set to fly to Italy by the year end. The company has indicated earlier that it planned to export this sports utility vehicle (SUV) to countries in Europe and Latin America.Speaking to mediapersons, Pravin Shah, chief executive (automotive), M&M said, “In the next four to five months, we are planning to start exports of the vehicle to Europe and Italy is likely to be the first destination. The XUV 500 was launched in Rome on September 24 and will sell as Mahindra XUV in the Italian market. This would be followed by the Quanto.”Nick-named as mini-Xylo, the compact SUV is scheduld to be showcased at the Bologna Motor Show later this year.According to report published on indiancarsbikes.in, “Italy is expected to be the first European market for the Quanto compact SUV. Mahindra plans to position the Quanto against the Renault Duster in Europe, where the latter sells under the Dacia brand name. Mahindra will begin selling its flagship model, the XUV500 in Spain, from later this year and the Quanto, it seems will be the second model the Indian automaker plans to launch in Europe.”Mahindra reportedly claims that the Quanto’s 1.5 Liter, 3 cylinder diesel engine is the smallest diesel motor in the world to feature a twin turbocharger.The Quanto is also the first SUV from the Indian automaker to get a twin turbo, diesel engine.The Quanto is reportedly a big leap ahead of the Renault Duster SUV, which uses the tried and tested but a generation old 1.5 K9K turbo diesel engine. Besides, it is the first compact SUV in the world to squeeze in 7 seats in a form factor whose length measures under 4 meters.The company in India has priced it at Rs.5.82 lakh for the C2 trim, Rs.6.35 lakh for the C4, Rs.6.86 lakh for C6 and Rs.7.36 lakh for the top-end C8, ex-Thane.The new Mahindra car is stated to have the world’s smallest twin turbo engine with an ARAI certified fuel efficiency of 17.21kmpl.With Agency inputsadvertisement
APTN National NewsStill on the prairies a video showing a bullying incident between two aboriginal girls in an Edmonton school went up on the internet.But instead of feeling humiliated and embarrassed the victim and her mother are now trying to turn the incident into something positive.APTN’s Keith Laboucan has this story.