Chelsea reportedly keen on Stuttgart defender Rudiger

first_imgChelsea are one of several clubs keen on Stuttgart defender Antonio Rudiger, according to the Express.Manchester United and West Ham are also said to be interested in the 21-year-old along with Juventus, Bayern Munich and Monaco.“Of course I am aware of the interest from Manchester United,” he is quoted as saying.“They are definitely one of the top clubs in Europe and they are in a league I have been dreaming of. The Premier League is very physical, intense, breathtaking and with a lot of goals.“My focus, though, remains on playing for Stuttgart. For now, I just have to try and progress as a player.”The Express once again suggest Chelsea are trying to sign Sami Khedira, with reports in Spain claiming that Arsenal have already held talks with the Real Madrid midfielder over a £100,000-a-week deal.Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho is said to be considering making a bid. Khedira played under him at Real.And the Daily Star claim Arsenal could try to beat Chelsea to the signing of Paris St-Germain forward Edinson Cavani, who has also been repeatedly touted as a Blues transfer target.Follow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebooklast_img read more

SA to step up small business support

first_img6 May 2010 She said all nine provinces had co-operated, even Gauteng and the Western Cape, which did not have Seda offices. Davies said 20 000 callers had accessed the small, medium and micro enterprise (SMME) payments hotline, which was launched in September and is housed at the Small Enterprise Development Agency (Seda). She said the advisory council on co-operatives would include advisers drawn from those on the ground in all provinces as well as legal people. The government plans to increase support for small businesses and co-operatives via a new academy and advisory board, and by introducing legislation that makes it easier for South Africans to run co-operatives. The hotline, which helps business owners claim late payments from government departments and public bodies had so far facilitated payments of R31-million to entrepreneurs, he said. Deputy Trade and Industry Minister Maria Ntuli said there were over 23 000 co-operatives registered by the department, but that only about 2 000 were “functional”, making training and monitoring of the sector vital. Source: BuaNewscenter_img SMME hotline Ntuli recently visited the provinces to determine the nature and problems of support to small enterprises, and will this week table her report on her findings before Parliament’s Trade and Industry Portfolio Committee. Institutional support Briefing the media ahead of his budget vote in Parliament in Cape Town this week, Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies said his department would also be looking to revive its proposal for government to buy 10 key products and services from small business owners. “Let’s create entrepreneurs and opportunities for the people, so they can stand up for themselves,” said Ntuli. The department was also looking at institutional support for small businesses, specifically at how to boost finance and business training and wanted to interrogate whether government support was viable and whether the country had a proper support system in place.last_img read more

R800m for South Africa’s Green Fund

first_img3 May 2012 The National Treasury has allocated R800-million over the next two years for South Africa’s Green Fund, which aims to provide finance for high-quality, high-impact, job-creating green economy projects around the country. Water and Environmental Affairs Minister Edna Molewa made the announcement in Cape Town on Wednesday ahead of her department’s budget vote in Parliament. Molewa said the money represented a critical mechanism for achieving a just transition to a low-carbon, resource-efficient and job-creating green economy growth path in South Africa. “The primary objective of the Green Fund is to provide catalytic finance for high-quality, high-impact green economy projects and mainstreaming activities which would not have been implemented without fiscal support,” Molewa said.‘Myth’ that green management hinders development She said it was up to South Africans to debunk the myth that environmental management hindered development, by positioning the sector as a major contributor to job creation and the fight against poverty. “The transformation of our industries towards the building of a green economy has many facets; [it is mainly] about creating new labour-absorbing industries that also mitigate impacts on the environment. “This green economy offers substantial opportunities for job creation and development in the environmental goods and services sector, particularly in biodiversity, waste and natural resource management services.” Last year, the department committed to implementing a green economy plan through local and international partnerships with green investors, supported by funding from the Treasury’s Green Fund, as well as international funding through facilities such as the World Bank Clean Technology Fund and the newly established Green Climate Fund.Biodiversity jobs for 800 graduates, school-leavers Molewa also announced on Wednesday that up to 800 unemployed school leavers and graduates, mostly from rural areas, would be hired in biodiversity jobs for a period of two-and-a-half years. Molewa said the department would manage the placement of the candidates through the South African National Biodiversity Institute (Sanbi). “Sanbi’s application to the jobs fund, titled ‘Catalysing access to employment and job creation in ecosystem management’, was approved by the Development Bank of Southern Africa to the tune of R300-million,” Molewa said. Source: BuaNewslast_img read more

South Africa beats Senegal in soccer friendly

first_img9 September 2015Bafana Bafana beat Senegal in the Nelson Mandela Challenge, played at Orlando Stadium in Soweto last night. Mpho Makola, in his debut for the national side, scored the only goal of the game in the 78th minute.Coach Shakes Mashaba, who made seven changes to the team following the game lost to Mauritania in an Afcon qualifier on 5 September, will be well pleased with how the players acquitted themselves against a side that had not lost a match since the African Cup of Nations earlier in the year.Bafana produced some excellent football throughout the first half, with Sibusiso Vilakazi and Thamsanqa Gabuza linking up extremely well.The first half ended 0-0.South Africa started the second half much like they had finished the first, pressing for a goal but again wasted numerous scoring opportunities.A breakthrough came in the 78th minute, when Makola received the ball outside the area and unleashed a beautiful right-footed curler into the top-right corner.Senegal had chances to equalise, but a combination of poor shooting and some great work by Itumeleng Khune ensured that the Bafana captain secured the 31st clean sheet of his international career.Although only a friendly, a victory against such quality opposition will surely allow Mashaba to breathe a sigh of relief.Source: News24Wirelast_img read more

Cooperative merger approved

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Agland Co-op and Heritage Cooperative stockholders have both approved the Merger Agreement between Agland Co-op and Heritage Cooperative. Now begins the work of finalizing due diligence and the unification of policies, procedures, systems, and people progressing towards an effective date of Sept. 1, 2017.In a joint statement, Jeff Osentoski, President and CEO of Agland Co-op, and Eric Parthemore, President and CEO of Heritage Cooperative both agree that, “The merger of Agland Co-op and Heritage Cooperative will create a dynamic organization built for the future. It will be a cooperative that brings value and benefits to members, employees, and our communities while protecting members’ equity, without compromising our fundamental core values or social responsibilities.”Heritage Cooperative serves the agricultural needs of farmers and residents in a 20 county area in central Ohio. The cooperative includes 30 locations which serve over 3,300 farmer members, and over 4,000 rural and urban customers.Agland Co-op, Inc. is based in New Philadelphia and serves customers in Ohio, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Illinois, and Kentucky. Agland Co-op has 23 locations which serve over 1,900 farmer members.last_img read more

Top 10 stories of 2017: #8

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest 8. In the barn and out of troubleIn Clinton County, a new program is giving area youth an opportunity to find something more productive to do than they might otherwise choose. The Juvenile Court System has started a new 4-H group, called Bacon and Bits, and they are giving kids in that club a hog to show at the county fair that provides much more than just a summer project.last_img

Developer Announces Plan For South Carolina’s First Near-Zero-Energy Home

first_imgHome Will Include Large Rooftop PV ArrayAIKEN, SC — Ron Monahan, a developer from Boulder, Colorado, has announced plans to begin construction this year on a home he calls “the first zero-energy home in South Carolina.” The home will be one of 75 Energy Star homes planned for Phase One of The Ridge at Chukker Creek, a green residential development near Aiken, South Carolina.The near-zero-energy home will be insulated with spray polyurethane foam and equipped with a rooftop photovoltaic array. If the market responds well, Monahan may build three additional zero-energy homes in South Carolina.Architect George Watt of Boulder, Colorado, is finalizing plans for the home. “The approach is to do it as an all-electric house,” said Watt. “We plan to use an air-to-air heat pump with a COP of 3.6 or 3.7 and an on-demand electric water heater. The house will include an induction cooktop and Energy Star appliances to keep loads down, along with a Lifebreath HRV. It will have a terrific building envelope, well insulated and well sealed, with R-20 walls and an R-40 roof. I expect that the house will need a PV system sized between 8 and 10 kilowatts.”According to the Aiken Standard, The Ridge at Chukker Creek “includes a 61-acre conservation easement called the Freeman Preserve, miles of walking trails and a spring-fed pond. … Builders plan to use recycled or recyclable materials, with low or no volatile organic compounds and locally manufactured components.” At The Ridge at Chukker Creek, existing three-bedroom homes without PV systems are on the market for $325,000.last_img read more

Understanding Home Energy Performance Will Become a Key to Real Estate Success

first_imgBy DOUGLAS MILLERReal estate professionals play a pivotal role in the U.S. residential real estate market. Overseeing from start to finish the multiple steps and piles of paperwork involved with property transactions, they support both sellers moving forward with the next stage of their lives and buyers looking for a new place to call home. They provide trusted and influential guidance that affects the largest investment that most of us will ever make: our homes.Home energy performance is too often overlooked by buyers and sellers during property transactions, and buyers seldom have easy access to energy performance information. Even though U.S. homeowners spend on average about $2,200 per year on energy bills and increasingly indicate demand for energy-efficient homes, real estate professionals generally undersell (or are unaware of) the benefits of homes with strong energy performance.These benefits include improved comfort, health, privacy, programmability, and interconnectivity, as well as increased monthly affordability and — where relevant information is made available — resale value. Moreover, U.S. real estate listings generally lack details about a property’s energy performance, energy-efficient features, and estimated utility costs. This omission contributes to the unnecessary perpetuation of the invisibility of home energy upgrade investments, housing dissatisfaction, underinvestment in home energy upgrades, plateauing residential energy savings, and risks to U.S. real estate market stability. Changing consumer demandsReal estate professionals are under pressure to accommodate various evolving market trends. Consumer preferences are diverging based on generation, with baby boomers looking to age in place and millennials becoming the largest share of home buyers with their own demands. Numerous residential energy technologies — including rooftop solar, LED lighting, programmable thermostats and appliances, heat pumps, and battery storage — are becoming commonplace and sought-after in homes.State and local governments are also increasing standards for energy performance for new and existing homes. For example, California has a statewide goal for all new residential construction to achieve zero net energy status by 2020.Real estate professionals can embrace and profit from these market trends by making home energy performance a core component of the support they provide for buyers and sellers. Those who help clients identify where to start, which home energy upgrades can deliver the most value, and how to showcase these upgrades during property sales will be better situated to meet emerging consumer demands and ride the wave of market trends for profit. As such, real estate professionals who ignore insights about where the market is heading and fail to build their own energy performance capabilities should expect to fall behind. Giving Green Certification a Home in Real Estate Listings Q&A: I’m A New Real Estate Agent and I Would Like to Sell Energy-Efficient, Clean, Safe HomesGreen Home Appraisal WoesSeeing Red on a Green Property Appraisal — Part 1Seeing Red on a Green Property Appraisal — Part 2Seeing Red on a Green Property Appraisal — Part 3One Broker’s Take on the Selling Power of Green Opportunity is calling for all real estate professionals to tap the promising U.S home energy upgrades market by helping clients understand, prioritize, and invest in home energy performance during the property transaction process — when buyers and sellers already tend to make general home improvements. Real estate professionals who enhance their home energy performance capabilities can lead their competitors on market trends and improve the long-term prospects of their business. Gaining a green credentials advantageReal estate professionals with green credentials — namely, the National Association of Realtors Green Designation—maintain a higher standard of support for buyers and sellers. They understand why energy performance matters. They also know how to implement green data entry fields on multiple listing service (MLS) systems, promote the benefits of energy-efficient features, get enhanced property valuations from appraisers with sustainability credentials, and use energy performance to differentiate among properties.Until home energy performance capabilities become a general industry standard for real estate professionals, green credentials like the Realtors Green Designation offer a useful indicator for buyers and sellers seeking higher quality support and better outcomes during real estate transactions. Buyers and sellers who want homes delivering greater comfort, health, resale value, and affordability for their families should therefore seek out real estate professionals with such credentials.As more buyers and sellers seek the benefits that high-performance homes deliver and expect assistance finding them during the property transaction process, real estate professionals who embrace market trends and take the initiative today to make home energy performance central to their client support will be in an advantageous position to harness the markets of tomorrow.center_img Using home energy performance to get aheadIn the rapidly evolving U.S. residential market, real estate professionals can leverage home energy performance to achieve faster closing times and higher closing rates, larger commissions, and greater competitive advantage.To encourage and empower U.S. real estate professionals to understand and promote the multiple benefits of homes with strong energy performance, Rocky Mountain Institute’s Residential Energy+ team developed the “Home Heroes” infographic in partnership with the National Environmental Education Foundation (NEEF) — a congressionally chartered organization with a vision to have 300 million Americans actively use environmental knowledge by 2022 (see Image #2, below).This shareable education tool describes how real estate professionals can support home buyers and sellers in the pursuit of homes that are better for their families, their pocketbooks, and the environment in order to gain competitive advantage in a real estate market that’s evolving to meet changing customer demands. More specifically, the tool links to leading research about the ways that real estate professionals can gain from making energy performance central to the support they provide buyers and sellers, along with specific actions they can take to better support their clients. RELATED ARTICLES © 2017 Rocky Mountain Institute. Published with permission. Originally posted on RMI Outlet.last_img read more

Tanker Operator to Pay USD 2 Mn for Dumping Oily Waste

first_imgzoomIllustration. Image Courtesy: Pexels under CC0 Creative Commons license Vessel operator Interorient Marine Services was convicted and sentenced in Louisiana for maintaining false and incomplete records relating to the discharge of oil from a tanker.Senior ship officers employed by the company aboard the Ridgebury Alexandra Z discharged oily waste into the ocean by flushing the vessel’s pollution prevention equipment sensor with fresh water.This flushing of the sensor tricked the system into detecting a much lower effluent oil content than what was actually being discharged. These senior officers then falsified the vessel’s Oil Record Book, recording that 87,705 gallons of oily wastewater had been discharged properly through the pollution prevention equipment.The company admitted to illegally dumping the oil cargo residues and oily bilge water directly into the ocean and falsifying Oil Record Book entries to conceal the illegal dumping.Interorient Marine Services Limited pleaded guilty to a felony violation of the Act to Prevent Pollution from Ships, 33 U.S.C. § 1908(a), for failing to accurately maintain the Ridgebury Alexandra Z’s Oil Record Book. Under the terms of the plea agreement, the company will pay a total fine of USD 2 million and serve a 4-year term of probation, during which all vessels operated by the company and calling on U.S. ports will be required to implement a robust Environmental Compliance Plan.The vessel’s captain, Vjaceslavs Birzakovs, was charged in a six-count indictment by a Grand Jury in the Western District of Louisiana on Nov. 29, 2018, for his involvement in this case. The indictment alleges that Birzakovs directed circumvention of the vessel’s pollution prevention equipment, falsified records, obstructed justice, made false statements, and conspired with other crewmembers to falsify the vessel’s Oil Record Book. The charges are merely accusations, and he is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.last_img read more