Sources close to both companies said that terms had been agreed after months of talks and that an announcement should come this week.The takeover would trigger a windfall for Robert Tchenguiz who holds a 30% stake in Somerfield, as well as his fellow shareholders Apax, Barclays Capital and Kaupthing, the Icelandic bank.For the Co-op, the deal is central to its hopes of reviving memories of the 1960s, when the group, famed for its “divi” card, became Britain’s biggest grocery retailer with about 13 million customer-members. TheTimes
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Nova Scotia hopes to become a world leader in tidal technology, writes The Global and Mail.Even though Nova Scotia has one of the most powerful tidal currents in the world, tidal development is moving at a very slow pace.In order to speed up the process Ottawa, Nova Scotia, Encana Corp. and several tidal technology companies formed the Fundy Ocean Research Centre for Energy (FORCE), which sits near a huge inlet of the Bay of Fundy.FORCE’s main plan is to become a key centre of tidal power research.In terms of tidal energy, FORCE communications manager Matt Lumley said: “We are sitting on the top of Everest.”Three out of four berths are rented, but neither of the power developers is deploying any tidal generators.The center expects to see deployment of the tidal turbines in the Bay of Fundy by 2015.Richard Karsten, a mathematics professor at Acadia University in Wolfville, N.S. calculated that the Bay of Fundy could host hundreds of tidal turbines which could generate around 2.5GW of electricity, enough to power a million homes.[mappress]Offshore WIND staff, August 27, 2013; Image: fundyforce
Victoria University research has found that the St Kilda penguins have higher loads of arsenic, mercury and lead in their blood compared to their cousins on Phillip Island and the remote Notch Island colony in Bass Strait.Annett Finger, a PhD candidate at VU’s Institute for Sustainability and Innovation, tested 300 little penguins as part of a three-year study to determine if they were useful in monitoring the health of the bay.She and her colleagues collected small samples of blood, feathers and faeces for the study.“St Kilda’s little penguins feed only within the bay so this was a unique opportunity to find out how contaminated their marine environment is,” she said.Mercury levels in the penguin’s blood showed an increasing trend at St Kilda but decreased at Phillip Island between 2011 and 2013.“While the source of the increased blood mercury is unknown, we do know that Port Phillip Bay went through major dredge works from 2008 to 2009,” she said.Dredging may have disturbed polluted sediments – causing contaminated particles to enter the penguin’s food chain.Ms Finger pointed to Environment Protection Authority records showing increased copper, chromium, lead and zinc levels in the water column during the dredge works.Port Phillip Bay is a semi-enclosed ecosystem impacted by industrial run-offs, dredge works and commercial fishing.“It is a potential contamination hotspot because it is quite shallow and closed off – historically polluted sediments are still there, they don’t get flushed out,” Ms Finger said.About 1000 little penguins – the same species that attract thousands of tourists to the famous Phillip Island penguin parade – live at the St Kilda breakwater.Ms Finger said that better understanding of the toxicology of the St Kilda’s little penguin population was important for the management and conservation of the species.[mappress mapid=”21456″]
Please see the Gazette’s dedicated coronavirus page here >> Solicitors urgently needing to take instructions from clients in custody face waiting several weeks for a video-link appointment, the Gazette has learned.When Sonya O’Brien, a partner at Oldham firm Norcross Lees & Riches, requested an urgent video-link visit to see her client ahead of a bail application, the prison initially told her no slots were available for at least one month. The earliest prison video-link appointment that Kerry Hudson, director at London firm Bullivant Law, could get to see her client was two weeks after the trial date.The trial was listed for Monday but Hudson said the court was unable to produce her client. She had spent three hours on the Sunday creating a chronology of events ‘ready to oppose and resist pressure from the court to proceed to a trial that day if our client had been produced. And it was necessary as the bench (rightly) scrutinised the reasons for the ineffective trial’.She added: ‘No doubt without my efforts, the blame would have been centred on the defence not running around like maniacs trying to get the rest of the system to work.’The Law Society’s crime practitioners Covid-19 working group has written to HM Prison & Probation Service for an update on the possible return of face-to-face legal visits and the proper use of cloud video platform capacity to facilitate remote visits.The group says the lengthy wait means it is not possible to take instructions from clients sent to the Crown court following a first appearance at the magistrates’ court and prior to their plea and trial preparation hearing.Law Society president Simon Davis said: ‘It cannot be right that a court is in a position to give someone in custody an expedited trial date, but they cannot take advantage of that opportunity because their solicitor cannot take instructions.‘Efforts must be redoubled to facilitate contact between lawyers and their clients in custody through prison video links, and to reintroduce face-to-face prison visits as soon as it is safe. This could include Her Majesty’s Prison & Probation Service making more staff available to aid the movement of inmates around the prison to video/visit rooms as well as making more remote technology available to allow video conferencing.’A prison service spokesperson said: ‘The suspension of face-to-face meetings undoubtedly saved lives and we worked hard to ensure legal advice continued remotely. That includes providing more than 1,000 extra telephone handsets, hundreds of video meeting rooms and we are increasing capacity even further.’The Ministry of Justice said it is taking steps to increase video-conferencing availability at some locations through increased operating hours during the weekdays, and Saturdays in some cases. It is taking ‘urgent action’ to increase the physical number of video-link outlets at sites where capacity is limited and to support specialist courts. *The Law Society is keeping the coronavirus situation under review and monitoring the advice it receives from the Foreign & Commonwealth Office and Public Health England. Find advice and updates here.
SLOVAKIA: A 15-year lease of a container transfer terminal will enable Russia’s intermodal operator to launch direct services between Moscow and the Adriatic ports, boosting its position in the Eurasian landbridge market. Chris Jackson reports from Dobra.,‘This is one of the most important strategic routes in Russian railway policy’, emphasised RZD President Vladimir Yakunin on November 25, participating in ceremonies to launch an ‘integrated logistics corridor’ linking Russia and the Far East with central and southern Europe via international transport Corridor V.Yakunin was speaking at Dobra, in the southeast corner of Slovakia, where RZD’s subsidiary JSC Transcontainer has signed a 15-year deal to lease the gauge-transfer terminal from ZSSK Cargo with effect from July 1 2009. The terminal is intended to form the hub of a new Eurasian intermodal network, opening up a route between Russia and western Europe via Ukraine and Slovakia to augment the lines through Belarus and Poland. In the longer term, Slovakia is seen as the gateway for a broad-gauge route into western Europe. As well as marking the Dobra terminal lease, Yakunin signed a Memorandum of Intent with Slovakia’s Minister of Transport Lubomir Vazny and the Deputy Director of Ukrainian Railways Michael Kospjuk paving the way for the construction of the oft-discussed 1 520 mm gauge line to Wien. According to Vazny, the events at Dobra followed on from the signing of a Memorandum in Moscow on January 4 2008 under which the Russians would help to develop the existing broad-gauge route built to serve the Slovakian steelworks at Hutníky near Košice and create an international logistics business. This in turn led to the formation of a working group bringing together representatives from Russia, Ukraine, Slovakia and Austria to prepare preliminary estimates.Under-used facilityThe new line may be some way off, but Transcontainer is keen to get into the market as quickly as possible. Director-General Petr Baskakov said creation of the new hub at Dobra was ‘very important for us’ as it would complete the final missing links in a 12 000 km corridor linking China and Europe. ‘There are very good prospects ahead’, he emphasised. ‘Today offers us a unique opportunity to offer our clients an end-to-end route that can match deep sea routings but with journey times that are cut to a third’. Located 10 km from the Ukrainian border between Pribenik and Cierna-nad-Tisou, the Dobra terminal is served by both ZSR’s 1 435 mm gauge network and a 1 520 mm gauge branch from Chop. The terminal was built in 2002, but technical problems meant that it did not become fully operational until four years later. Even now it remains considerably under-used, handling around 2 000 TEUs a year compared with a nominal capacity of 700 TEUs a day.The 18 ha facility has four broad-gauge and four standard-gauge tracks around 600 m long, and two 50 tonne Brezno container cranes. Although primarily intended for gauge transfer, it also does some road-to-rail transhipment, particularly palletised metal goods. According to ZSSK Cargo’s Team Leader Jirí Pokorny, it takes around 5 min to transfer a container between broad and standard-gauge wagons, allowing a complete train to be transhipped in under 2 h. The site also has a stacking area able to accommodate up to 1 730 TEUsContributing to the current under-utilisation of Dobra is a long-standing agreement between the state railways of Slovakia and Ukraine under which westbound traffic is transhipped in Slovakia and eastbound at Chop in Ukraine. Non-containerised traffic is handled at Cierna-nad-Tisou. However, Pokorny says this agreement does not apply to ‘private’ operators such as Transcontainer. Under the agreement, Transcontainer will take over the operation of the terminal completely and meet all the running costs. Some details have yet to be settled, including whether the staff will transfer to the new operator or remain employed by ZSSK Cargo. Although the lease does not start officially until July 1, Transcontainer hoped to be able to launch its first services before the end of 2008.Transcontainer and ZSSK Cargo are planning to develop a regular intermodal service along Corridor V linking Moscow with the Adriatic ports of Trieste and Koper, under an international agreement signed on July 17. Transcontainer will introduce its own block trains between Moscow and Dobra through Ukraine, and is currently tendering for an operator to handle the 1 435 mm gauge services serving its new hub from the west. Baskakov said he was convinced that ‘the terminal in Dobra will become a reliable gateway for European cargo in the same way that Zabaikalsk [on the Russian-Chinese border] is for East Asian cargo.’ He believes the facility could soon be handling more than 250 000 TEUs per year, although the initial target for 2009 is a more modest 25 000. Broad gauge potentialThe Dobra agreement is seen by the project partners as a stepping stone towards RZD’s longer-term ambition of pushing a broad-gauge line into western Europe. Upgrading of the existing broad-gauge line to Košice and its extension to Wien is projected to require an investment of around US$4·3bn.Describing the project as ‘one of the options for integrating transport between the countries of the European Union and Russia’, Yakunin said he believed that the new line could be operational in about five years. He envisages that the line will also carry international passenger services, but the priority is quite clearly long-distance freight. ‘Today’s events will help the railway industry to enhance the unobstructed movement of freight from the Pacific Ocean to Europe and beyond’, said Yakunin. ‘It is an unprecedented project – the first time the railways of Russia, Slovakia, Austria and Ukraine have put their signatures to the intent of creating a new railway corridor’. ‘Today the sea route takes 40 days. Last year we ran a train from Beijing to Hamburg in 18 days, but we need to achieve still higher speeds and cut the overall time to 14 days or less’.‘This project has a pan-European character’, Yakunin insisted, adding that ‘door-to-door delivery of freight to the centre of Europe without changing the track gauge will enable a significant increase in delivery speed.’ He also envisages increased flows of European goods into the growing markets of Russia, Ukraine and central Asia. Working together betterAsked how significant landbridge traffic was as part of RZD’s total business, Yakunin said it was not so much about volumes as mentality; the important thing at this stage was getting the different railways to work together and compete against other modes such as deep-sea shipping and road haulage. ‘Railways can only win by working together’ he insisted, adding that ‘our real opponents are the other modes. We have a nice saying in Russia: “friendship is friendship, but we will not share our tobacco”. Why should rail share the market with ships and lorries?’ Looking forward, he said he was ‘personally convinced that this project will be a success … this is a development which no-one will be able to stop’. Noting that ‘we have signed the Memorandum of Intent’, Yakunin said ‘there will be more to follow as we integrate our transport policies over the next two years’. Asked whether the global financial crisis might impact on projected traffic demand, he was sure that short-term fluctuations would not impact significantly on longer-term projections. ‘The world may be in crisis now, but every cloud has a silver lining’. ‘Landbridge is not just about routes – it’s a mentality thing. It’s about getting the railways to work together’Vladimir Yakunin, President Russian Railways
USA: The Twin Cities Metropolitan Council awarded the civil works contract for the Southwest LRT light rail line on November 15 to a joint venture of Lunda and C.S. McCrossan. Bids were invited last year, and the joint venture beat one other bidder with its offer of $799·5m. The 23·3 km route between Minneapolis and Eden Prairie serves 16 stops. It will parallel existing freight railway tracks for 12·6 km and include two cut-and-cover tunnels. A ceremonial groundbreaking is expected to take place this month, with preliminary work due to start before the end of the year. Main works are due to begin next year and run to 2022, ahead of opening in 2023. Work will include the construction of six pedestrian tunnels and 29 bridges; a further seven existing bridges are to be modified. Award of the contract follows approval by the Federal Transit Administration for the start of construction. The FTA issued a Letter of No Prejudice on November 14. Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton emphasised that ‘the Southwest Light Rail is a critical economic development project for the people of Minnesota’. The Met Council expects to submit its application for a Full Funding Grant Agreement from the FTA. The $929m package would cover nearly half of the total project cost.
The Walabot-60Ghz RF Sensor Unit The EVK Engine – Hosts software that performs signal processing functions Web GUI – User interface client software that communicates with the EVK Engine via a TCP/IP connection API Client – Optional customer-developed software that communicates with the EVK Engine via a TCP/IP connection Vayyar Imaging has launched a new Evaluation Kit (EVK) for its mm-Wave 3D-Imaging solution. Walabot-60Ghz provides users with the groundbreaking capabilities of Vayyar’s high-resolution 3D imaging chip, alongside an SDK/API, facilitating rapid development, integration and scaling of products. The kit includes a highly advanced chip with a 40 Transceivers array (40 Tx/Rx), complete with FOV embedded antennas and wide-band 60 GHz imaging radar.The Walabot-60Ghz EVK delivers an exceptionally wide field of view along with high-resolution imaging. This gives users unprecedented capabilities, enabling the development of advanced applications for smart home, robotics, retail, medical and many other industries. Potential uses include obstacle avoidance, perimeter protection, ultrasonic replacement, automatic door openers, people tracking, posture detection, short range imaging and even point cloud technologies.The Walabot-60Ghz system consists of the following components: Leveraging the technological advancements of the Walabot-60Ghz EVK, individuals and organizations alike – from research and innovation centers to engineers and enthusiasts – can create disruptive applications based on Vayyar’s advanced System on a Chip (SoC) for mmWave 3D imaging technology. To learn more about the Walabot-60Ghz EVK, click here.
A map marking the locations of all the pumps and equipment in place for a turnkey operation will play a key role in the ability for State Forestry to respond quickly if the fire picks back up and the proposed burnout operation is needed to protect the Sterling Highway and the community of Sterling. The public is asked to please steer clear of crews working in the area and all firefighting equipment that is in place. Transition to a Type 4 organization will take place Tuesday at 7am. The Pioneer Peak Hotshots and some overhead will remain in the field to monitor the fire and finalize preparations on the fire breaks. FacebookTwitterEmailPrintFriendly分享The warmer and drier weather over the weekend increased fire activity Sunday afternoon on the eastern and southern perimeters of the fire. Cloud cover and light rains are moving into the area this morning and are expected to moderate the fire activity once again. The lightning-caused 1,016-acre fire continues to burn in a limited protection area of the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge. The temporary flight restriction (TFR) remains in place over the fire. The TFR is designed to provide for the safety of fire-related aircraft operations. Pilots are urged to stay clear of the area and should check with the Federal Aviation Administration for NOTAM’s prior to departure. The most up to date TFR is available at http://tfr.faa.gov/tfr2/list.html. During these wet weather days, residents are encouraged to take steps on their own properties to reduce wildfire risk using tips found on the FireWise website: http://www.firewise.org/wildfire-preparedness/firewise-toolkit.aspx. Although there were still 121 personnel assigned to the fire as of this morning, the demobilization process is happening quickly now. The White Mountain Type 2IA Crew, the North Star Type 2 Crew and the Chena Hotshots were released Monday.
SAUK RAPIDS — The gym at Sauk Rapids-Rice high school was electric Tuesday afternoon as Storm Nation showed their support for their state bound Boy’s Basketball team.This is the Storms first trip to the state tournament since 2003. Head Coach Derek Peterson says he’s proud of the hard work his team has put it. 1080p HD 720p HD Visit Advertiser website GO TO PAGE Skip About Connatix V56892 1/1 About Connatix V56892 “We have a lot of seniors who are leaders, a lot of the young guys stepped up. Those guys have worked hard and deserve every minute of this. I’m so proud of them.”Forward Cody Landwehr says the team had it’s ups and downs but found ways to overcome.“We’ve had a lot of highs and lows this season, but we play really well together.”The Storm will face the #2 ranked Austin Packers at Williams Arena on the University of Minnesota campus. Peterson says they just need to play their game.“We need to make sure this game doesn’t become a track meet. Our goal is to play really good defense, rebound and play at our pace. We do that we have a shot.”The city will escort the team bus out of town tonight at 7:00 p.m. starting at the high school.Tip-off for the game is set for 2:00 p.m. Wednesday. You can listen the game with Dave Overlund on AM 1390 Granite City Sports. Auto (360p) 360p