Fidest – Agenzia giornalistica/press agency

Quotidiano di informazione – Anno 31 n° 301

Archive for 28 settembre 2011

Spice project

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 28 settembre 2011

Over 50 concerned groups from around the world are calling on people to sign an open letter asking the UK Government and Research Councils to scrap the controversial SPICE experiment designed to test hardware for deployment of stratospheric aerosol injections as a way to artificially cool the planet. The SPICE project (Stratospheric Particle Injection for Climate Engineering) involves four universities, three research councils, several government departments along with private company Marshall Aerospace. Groups signing the letter to Environment Minister Chris Huhne and the UK Research Councils hope it will gather enough support before the test to get authorities to reconsider allowing the controversial experiment to go ahead. The experiment, which involves spraying water from a kilometre-long hose suspended by a giant balloon, is scheduled to take place on a disused military airstrip in Sculthorpe, in Norfolk, UK between October 6 and 23rd. Groups objecting to the test say it will send the wrong signal to the international community, which adopted a moratorium on geoengineering activities last October at the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) in Nagoya, Japan
Organizers invite people opposed to carrying out geoengineering field trials in the absence of international agreement to signal their opposition here: http://www.handsoffmotherearth.org

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The International Year of Chemistry

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 28 settembre 2011

Senator Lisa Murkowski of Alaska

Image via Wikipedia

Washington, By unanimous consent, the U.S. Senate adopted a resolution yesterday designating 2011 as the International Year of Chemistry (IYC). Senate Resolution 283 “recognizes the achievements made in the field of chemistry and the contributions of those achievements to the well-being of humankind…and provides solutions that successfully address global challenges involving safe food and water, alternate sources of energy, improved health and a healthy and sustainable environment.”
“Chemistry has long been one of the fundamental scientific drivers of innovation,” said Sen. Coons. “The Senate’s passage of this resolution celebrates the work of chemists around the world to advance the well-being of humankind, and notes the critical contribution science plays to our society. The jobs of tomorrow are being formulated in the labs of today, which is why continued support of advanced research and innovation is so important. As the holder of a chemistry degree and having worked for years at a science-based manufacturing company, I was proud to have led the effort in the Senate to dedicate 2011 as the International Year of Chemistry. I hope this designation encourages more students to choose careers in science and helps motivate the next generation of innovative chemists.” The resolution was co-sponsored by Sen. Jeff Bingaman (D-NM), Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Sen. Mark Pryor (D-AR), and Sen. Debbie Ann Stabenow (D-MI). “This resolution supports the U.N.’s effort to educate children worldwide on the importance of chemistry,” said Sen. Murkowski. “It also brings recognition to the extraordinary contributions to science by Marie Curie, on the 100th anniversary of her second Nobel Prize.”
IYC 2011 is a global celebration of chemistry and its contributions to the world around us as officially designated by the United Nations. This worldwide initiative is being celebrated under the auspices of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC).

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A new line of thermal imaging cameras

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 28 settembre 2011

Thermogram (infrared image) of a small dog, wi...

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Veurey-Voroize, France, ULIS, a manufacturer of high-quality infrared (IR) imaging sensors for thermography, security, automotive and military applications, announced today that it has signed a contract with Schneider Electric, the developer and manufacturer of world leading Pelco video and security systems, to supply infrared (IR) sensors for Pelco’s new product line, the Sarix thermal imaging cameras. This is ULIS’ first major contract win in North America. It marks a growing trend in infrared technology among makers of visible cameras, who produce an estimated 20 – 25 million units per year, globally, according to industry insiders. IR technology is used to visualize objects in total darkness and through smoke, fog and rain. Pelco chose ULIS’ IR sensors for their performance, resistance to sun exposure, sensitivity and compatibility with Pelco and third party analytics (security algorithms that detect, locate and monitor intrusions). This is a much sought after feature since it improves the ability to assess threats.
Under the agreement, ULIS will deliver off-the-shelf TV 640×480 and 1/4 TV 384×288 format IR sensors. ULIS’ IR sensors will be used to provide round-the-clock surveillance in all weather conditions for a variety of applications, including port installations, public utilities, and critical infrastructure surveillance.
ULIS, a subsidiary of Sofradir, specializes in the design and manufacture of high quality infrared imaging sensors for thermography, security & surveillance, automotive and military applications. It enables makers of consumer electronics and infrared equipment to produce low weight, low power consumption and cost-effective thermal cameras in large volume. ULIS is located in Veurey-Voroize, near Grenoble, and employs 130 people. For more information, visit: http://www.ulis-ir.com (Lucie Nguyen)

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Global Environment Groups call on UK to Scrap SPICE geoengineering test

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 28 settembre 2011

Aerosol Stack in Niamey

Image by ARM Climate Research Facility via Flickr

Over 50 concerned groups from around the world are calling on people to sign an open letter asking the UK Government and Research Councils to scrap the controversial SPICE experiment designed to test hardware for deployment of stratospheric aerosol injections as a way to artificially cool the planet. The SPICE project (Stratospheric Particle Injection for Climate Engineering) involves four universities, three research councils, several government departments along with private company Marshall Aerospace. Groups signing the letter to Environment Minister Chris Huhne and the UK Research Councils hope it will gather enough support before the test to get authorities to reconsider allowing the controversial experiment to go ahead. The experiment, which involves spraying water from a kilometre-long hose suspended by a giant balloon, is scheduled to take place on a disused military airstrip in Sculthorpe, in Norfolk, UK between October 6 and 23rd. Groups objecting to the test say it will send the wrong signal to the international community, which adopted a moratorium on geoengineering activities last October at the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) in Nagoya, Japan
Organizers invite people opposed to carrying out geoengineering field trials in the absence of international agreement to signal their opposition here: http://www.handsoffmotherearth.org

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Ma cosa ho fatto di male?

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 28 settembre 2011

Pushkin (Russia), Catherine Palace, Italian Pr...

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Sbattuto in prima pagina dalle inchieste delle varie procure nazionali per aver fatto “sesso” mercenario o non o con minorenni (non si sa bene ma la magistratura indaga e fra dieci anni forse lo sapremo per sicuro se qualche processo riuscirà a superare i due, per ora, insormontabili scogli: le leggi ad personam e la prescrizione), il nostro presidente del consiglio sembra più stupito che colpito da qualche senso di colpa. D’altra parte sappiamo bene che il nostro sport nazionale è il sesso. Le statistiche ci dicono che gli italiani ogni anno spendono per questa nostra “lodevole inclinazione” qualcosa come tre miliardi di euro e la cifra pare sia in difetto perché non sono stati inclusi i viaggi del sesso, quello deviato (pederastia) ecc. Insomma un business al quale non poteva sottrarsi il nostro amato Silvio. Ma ora vogliamo dirla tutta cogliendo al volo le parole dell’onle Mario Mauro parlamentare europeo del Pdl che dai microfoni di Radio 24 ci dice “questo pezzo della nostra storia non può essere demonizzato. Si tratta di un bilancio sereno della nostra storia. Disconoscerla è un errore, bella o brutta che sia” E se poi ci si mette di traverso il cardinale Bagnasco allora è sempre l’on.le Mauro ad erudirci: “Berlusconi non ha bisogno di un giudice ma di un prete perché questi sono peccati. Chi è cristiano sa che i peccati sono presenti nella nostra vita e il richiamo di Bagnasco è per tutti”. Una bella confessione e tutto si rimette a posto. E i magistrati? Che ci azzeccano? Lui, il presidente, deve solo rispondere a Dio. E le escort? “Queste persone hanno tutte uguale dignità come il presidente e come me” soggiunge Mauro con aria di sufficienza. Che aggiungere di più? Anche il più smaliziato dei cronisti non sa più cosa dire: resta senza parole. (Riccardo Alfonso http://www.fidest.it)

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Nestle Chairman Hypocritical On Poverty

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 28 settembre 2011

Sugar cane residue can be used as a biofuel

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Nestle Chairman, Peter Brabeck-Letmathe, has launched a fierce attack on the use of food as feedstock for biofuels, claiming that the millions living in poverty were being denied access to food or suffering from sky rocketing food prices. Brabeck-Letmathe’s criticisms overstates the impact of conversion of palm oil to biodiesel while Nestle’s support for restrictions on the conversion of forest land to oil palm plantations much more directly inhibits increases in food production.Brabeck-Letmathe claims that biofuels and rising food prices caused by biofuels were the cause of the ‘Arab Spring,’ the recent political uprising in the Middle East. A study by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, in their Bioenergy and Food Security Analytical Framework, showed that “when done rationally and thoughtfully, sustainable modern bioenergy creates a virtuous cycle that improves agricultural productivity and draws investments in to expand associated infrastructures and promote economic and social development.”The claims that biofuels policies are ‘pushing millions back into poverty’ are wrong and hypocritical given that Nestle has endorsed a policy position where they refuse to support products grown on cleared forest land and therefore artificially constrain their production capacity.
At least to his credit Brabeck-Letmathe criticizes those who oppose the use of genetically modified organisms – and established technology which will increase food productivity. He also notes that “Europe’s policies effectively forbid poor countries in places like Africa from using genetically modified seed.” The parallels between GMOs and palm oil are clear. Both are used by Western activists to foist their own ideologies and standards on developing nations whilst restricting their capacity for higher levels of agricultural production and export. (from World Growth)

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Effectiveness of RSPO Questioned

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 28 settembre 2011

palm oil plantation

Image by angela7dreams via Flickr

The managing editor of the Malaysia Star, P Gunasegaram, has published an editorial which questions the effectiveness of the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil because groups other than producers dominate the organization. In response, RSPO could only acknowledge the fact that their new secretary general came straight from WWF. Gunasegaram made the statement that RSPO is being controlled by interests that are external to RSPO, the growers, processors or any other member. Indeed, the author noted that palm oil growers are out-numbered three to one on the RSPO Board.
Of even greater concern to Malaysia and Indonesia, which produce almost 90 per cent of the global supply of palm oil, is that Malaysia is only represented by 95 members and Indonesia by 79 out of 495 members. European members make up 57 per cent of the membership, while Malaysian and Indonesian members represent only 37 per cent.
Similarly, oil palm growers have just 18 per cent of the membership but palm oil processors have 39 per cent. Manufactures and consumer groups represent 38 per cent of the membership. In short, the author points out the inherent imbalances in RSPO. He suggests Malaysian and Indonesian palm oil growers have placed their brand in the hands of environmentalists, social NGOs and businesses that seek to purchase their product at lowest cost. The Malaysian writer says growers are concerned that RSPO cannot look after their best interests under current rules for governing RSPO. Most importantly, the author noted a fact which ENGOs and western governments appear to have lost sight of – the use of forest resources, the management of the economy and the economic development of a developing nation is a sovereign right of that nation – not of ENGOs. In response, the RSPO replied that the body was run by consensus and was set up to gain the approval from across all sectors dealing with palm oil. Yet growers and processors feel they are paying for this “consensus.” As well they are concerned that large companies such as Unilever have still failed to source only RSPO-certified oil while there is unbought surplus, yet support demands from ENGOS for higher and costlier standards from oil palm growers and processors. This comes on the back of wild claims by the Rainforest Action Network (RAN) that RSPO certified palm oil supplier, Wilmar, hired security guards who demolished locals’ homes following an altercation. RAN has used this as an excuse to continue their campaign to harass Cargill. To growers this is just another example of ENGOs exploiting the RSPO system to further NGOs agendas, rather than ensure the sustainable propagation of the oil palm. RSPO needs reform to remain effective. A number of companies have invested time and effort to try to make it work. With the advent of the Indonesian palm oil certification standard and the possibility of a Malaysian standard, these create other benchmarks for the process of certifying the sustainability of palm oil. Stakeholder-based organizations for voluntary certification are only effective if all parties feel their interests are served. (from World Growth)

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Good practices of integration

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 28 settembre 2011

Displaced people in a temporary transit centre...

Image by DFID - UK Department for International Development via Flickr

New York Academics, migration experts, policy makers, UN agency representatives and governments gathered in New York to share good practices of integration, showcase projects aimed at promoting tolerance and understanding in multicultural cities and examined the next steps. As a follow-up to subsequent discussions held in New York in 2009, in Rio de Janeiro in 2010, and in Rome in 2011, the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC) joined forces with the Italian Permanent Mission to the UN to organize a working lunch on “The Inter-ethnic City” on Monday, September 26th 2011. The integration of migrants, specifically in cities, is critical for the improvement of cooperative relations among peoples across cultures and religions. This working lunch examined good practices and processes for better integration at the level of cities as experienced by local administrators, policymakers and other stakeholders. Among other good practices, the UNAOC presented its video project which aims at showing examples of good integration of migrants in Italian cities and shifting the focus of the immigration debate towards the human side of the story. UNESCO and UN-Habitat presented the project ‘Migrants’ Inclusion in Cities: Innovative urban policies and practices’, a toolkit for local decision-makers providing guidelines and examples of good practices to improve the inclusion of international migrants in the city. According to Michelle Klein-Solomon, the Permanent Observer for the International Organization for Migration, “there is no one model of integration, there is no one model of migration, we have to acknowledge these differences while giving a feeling of citizenship to build more inclusive societies”. But overall, as stated by Vincenzo Scotti, Under Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs of Italy, it is a question of tolerance and respect.

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Contemporary meaning of european landscape

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 28 settembre 2011

London, Ontario Tuesday, October 4, 2011 -7:00 pm University of Western Ontario, The Department of Modern Languages and Literatures Conron Hall, University College, Room 224 Free admission
Toronto Wednesday, October 5, 2011 – 6:30pm Istituto Italiano di Cultura – 496 Huron St., Free admission
Toronto Thursday, October 6, 2011 – 11:30 a.m. -1:00 p.m. York University – Vari Hall 1152 A -4700 Keele Street, Free admission
The Italian Cultural Institute, York University and theUniversity of Western Ontario, in collaboration with the Istituto di Studi Superiori dell’Università di Bologna, Laboratorio di ricerca sulle città, are pleased to host an illustrated lecture byRaffaele Milani based on his book The art of the landscape(McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2009).
Landscape, which today is increasingly tied to ecology, geography, and the use of land, will be analyzed in terms of its aesthetic value and function, illustrating its cultural and historical identity. Landscape expresses a sentimental response, as well as a need for abstraction. It is not concerned only with natural beauty but makes sense of the world of human beings, from agriculture to cities, and throughout time it has belonged to the creativity of our visionary sensibility. Landscape is more than the sum of the parts, the individual fragments of our perception scattered along the continuum of our sensibility. It is more than the attraction of mental processes. It is the spirit of an infinite and magical connectedness of forms. The notion of landscape and beautiful landscape develops in history, but also in individuals, through the effects of time and space bound up with the rhythm of lines and surfaces that human beings invent almost instinctively. It is the outcome of the art of culture, the poesis of individuals and communities. Its recent significance showcases sensibility and art as an expression of the working out of virtuality. The present significance of the landscape in Europe can be understood by taking modern history as a starting point and referring to a tradition of vision that belongs to the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.
Raffaele Milani Director of the Laboratorio di Studi sulle città (Istituto di Studi Superiori), Professor of Aesthetics in the Philosophy Department of the University of Bologna, visiting professor in various foreign universities, curator of many international conferences. He has been director of post lauream Master in Landscape science and design (Faculty of Architecture – Department of Philosophy, University of Bologna). He has been Member of the Institute of Advanced Studies at the University of Bologna for two tenures.
The conference will be followed by a short presentation of the Research Laboratory on Cities by Barbara Cimatti, coordinator of the Laboratory and of the Istituto di Studi Superiori of the University of Bologna

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Palm Oil Residue May Solve Food Versus Fuel Debate

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 28 settembre 2011

BioFuel Oasis

Image by Keoki Seu via Flickr

Scientists from Korea and Indonesia are researching turning the fibrous residue from oil palm trees into a viable second generation biofuel feedstock. There has been considerable contention over the food versus fuel debate, however advances such as this may render palm oil an even more efficient and greenhouse friendly source of biofuel. (from World Growth)

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Malaysian Government Set to Create New Certification Standard

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 28 settembre 2011

Fruit of oil palm tree

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The Malaysian Government has indicated that it will consider forming its own certification standard. The Malaysian Government scheme will join the Indonesian Government palm oil certification standard alongside RSPO which is coming under increasing pressure to improve its effectiveness, transparency and governance.

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Australian House of Representatives Committee Rejects Mandatory Palm Oil Labelling

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 28 settembre 2011

Gillard's household folly

Image by Leonard John Matthews via Flickr

Australian Labor Party Government and Liberal/National Party Coalition representatives on the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Economics have recommended against passing a Bill put forward by Independent Senator, Nick Xenophon, for the mandatory labelling of palm oil in products sold in Australia. This represents a significant step towards the rejection of both the Bill and NGO inspired environmental trade barriers. The final decision on the fate of the Bill now lies with the Australian House of Representatives. (from World Growth)

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An annual study measuring the public perceptions

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 28 settembre 2011

Canada

Image by palindrome6996 via Flickr

Canada has earned the highest reputation ranking in Reputation Institute’s 2011 Country RepTrak™, an annual study measuring the public perceptions of 50 countries around the world. The study measures the overall Trust, Esteem, Admiration and Good Feelings the public holds towards these countries, as well as their perceptions across 16 different attributes, including a good quality of life, a safe place to live and a strong attention to their environment. Results from over 42,000 respondents worldwide showed that Canada scored well in all of these elements. “The study shows that a strong country reputation requires a solid performance across three different areas: having an advanced economy, an appealing environment and an effective government,” says Nicolas Georges Trad, Executive Partner of Reputation Institute, a global consulting firm specializing in reputation management. Canada was followed by Sweden, Australia, Switzerland and New Zealand, all showing stability in their high scores throughout the three years of this annual study. Their strong reputations are attributed to their steady democracies, high GDP per capita, focus on active lifestyles, well developed political systems and perceived neutrality to international political upheavals. The lowest ranked countries in the 50-country study were Pakistan, Iran and Iraq, while the United States and China were ranked in the middle and lower tiers.
Perhaps the most important finding in 2011 Country RepTrak™ is that reputation means money. Reputation Institute found a very strong correlation between a country’s reputation and people’s willingness to visit there, buy its exported products and services, invest there, study there or even live and work there. “Our approach provides a strategic tool that enables countries to make informed decisions about how to spend their brand and reputation building budgets,” says Kasper Nielsen, Executive Partner of Reputation Institute. “When you consider that a 10% increase in your country’s reputation leads to an 11% rise in your tourism receipts, and a 2% increase in your FDI – this is something both countries and companies might want to take note of.”
Reputation Institute is the world’s leading corporate reputation consulting firm. Founded in 1997, with a presence in 30 countries, we are the pioneer in reputation management. Through systematic research and analysis, Reputation Institute supports companies to build comprehensive strategies and make operational decisions that are designed to align stakeholders with corporate objectives creating tangible economic value. We enable leaders to make business decisions that build and protect reputational capital and drive competitive advantage. http://www.reputationinstitute.com.
Survey Sampling International (SSI) is the premier global provider of sampling solutions for survey research. With offices in 15 countries, SSI provides data collection services to more than 1,800 clients, including 48 of the top 50 research organizations. For more information, visit: http://www.surveysampling.com.
Toluna is the world’s leading independent online panel and survey technology provider to the global market research industry. We provide online sample and survey technology solutions to the world’s leading market research agencies, media agencies and corporates, from our 17 offices in Europe, North America and Asia Pacific. For more information, visit: http://www.toluna-group.com.

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