SA mulls mine drainage solutions

first_imgThe government’s current strategy is to only begin the more expensive route of desalination in 2014. The partnership would treat polluted underground water at Grootvlei Mine and the Witwatersrand Basin, as well as develop and fund a long-term solution to tackling acid-mine drainage. De Lange said neutralisation, coupled with a private-public partnership, was a solution if the treated water could be sold to and used by mines and industries, rather than being channelled back into the river. Feasibility study In line with the findings of the inter-ministerial commission’s report, de Lange also cautioned that the government’s current approach to treating acid mine drainage by diluting polluted rivers with fresh water was problematic, as the high salt content could still kill a river even while bringing the problem of acid mine drainage under control. Enforcement of National Water Act Acid mine drainage contaminates groundwater and leads to increased seismic activity, among other things. Outside of the Witwatersrand, acid mine drainage has been reported from a number of other areas in South Africa as well, including coalfields in Mpumalanga and KwaZulu-Natal and the Northern Cape’s Okiep copper district. In his presentation, Matji said his department’s idea was to fund the cleanup of acid-mine drainage through the enforcement of the National Water Act and other Acts and measures. Briefing Parliament’s committee on water affairs in Cape Town last week, the National Treasury’s director of public finance, Maselaganye Matji, said a private-public partnership could include the Departments of Mineral Resources and Water Affairs, adding that businesses, including mines, were interested in funding a long-term solution. South Africa’s National Treasury is looking at setting up a private-public partnership to tackle acid mine drainage, and is also considering implementing an environmental levy to fund the rehabilitation of affected groundwater. Such a tour would help officials to gain insight into how the US’s “super fund” tackles environmental management, while providing for an opportunity for South Africa to assess various technical resources in the US. The government has allocated a total of R553-million over the next three years to treat the acid mine drainage problem.center_img The various measures proposed include: an acid mine drainage levy on mines; a penalty for water sources levied on industries and water treatment works; a penalty for water pollution from non-point sources such as agriculture; fines on general environmental pollution and penalties levied on businesses and organisations for non-compliance at various levels. 27 June 2011 Matji said National Treasury had also recently met with the US Trade and Development Agency to discuss the possibly of the agency financing a study and tour of the USA by South African officials. The idea of an environmental levy and a management process to mitigate long-term effects of acid mine drainage was mooted in the inter-ministerial committee’s report on acid mine drainage, released in December last year. Matji said to date, private institutions had committed R78-million, the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) R5-million and the Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA) a further R10-million to tackle long-term acid mine drainage. The Department of Mineral Resources has allocated R328-million to combat acid mine drainage (which includes R200-million in transfers to the Council for Geo-Science and Mintek) and R225-million to the Department of Water Affairs. The idea was that whatever income was generated by the public-private partnership would be used to fund the necessary water and technical infrastructure, he said. The committee’s chairman, Johnny de Lange, welcomed the idea of a private-public partnership, but cautioned that it was necessary for the three departments, state-owned companies and the private sector, to work together to create an institutional arrangement that could award clear responsibilities to each partner. Clear responsibilities needed De Lange said a long-term strategy to tackle acid mine drainage is expected to be released next month after the conclusion of a feasibility study by the Department of Water Affairs on treating acid mine drainage. Source: BuaNewslast_img read more

Heating a Tight, Well-Insulated House

first_img Start Free Trial Already a member? Log in Sign up for a free trial and get instant access to this article as well as GBA’s complete library of premium articles and construction details. This article is only available to GBA Prime Memberscenter_img UPDATED on March 2, 2017 with information on the Dettson furnace rated at 15,000 Btu/h.If you build a small, tight, well-insulated home — in other words, a green home — it won’t need much heat. Since typical residential furnaces and boilers are rated at 40,000 to 80,000 Btuh, they are seriously oversized for a superinsulated home, which may have a heating design load as low as 10,000 to 15,000 Btuh.Builders have been struggling for decades with the question, “What’s the best way to heat a superinsulated home?” Your solution will depend in part on your answers to a couple of other questions:Are you comfortable heating the house from a single point source? If you are, the best solution might be a wood stove, pellet stove, or a direct-vent space heater. These solutions work best in compact homes with open floor plans. Of course, the tighter the home’s envelope and the thicker the insulation, the more likely that indoor temperatures will remain fairly consistent from room to room.Do you want an all-electric house? Green builders have diverging views on this question. Builders of net-zero-energy homes often avoid gas- and oil-fired appliances, preferring to balance energy loads with electricity produced on site by a photovoltaic (PV) array or a wind turbine.Of course, most homes still depend on grid-powered electricity, and if your local electric utility generates power from fossil fuel, then it makes little environmental sense to heat with electricity. From a carbon-production standpoint, it’s usually better to burn fuels on site rather than in a remote power plant.What not to installBefore moving on to right-sized solutions, it’s worth mentioning that it rarely makes sense to install radiant-floor heat in a superinsulated house.As Alex Wilson has explained, for well-built homes, an in-floor radiant system is usually overkill.… last_img read more

Celts Co-Owner Spurs Boston Olympics

first_imgBOSTON — The group leading the bid to bring the 2024 Olympics to Boston shook up its management May 21, making Boston Celtics co-owner Steve Pagliuca the new Chairman in an attempt to revive the city’s chances of hosting the Summer Games.Pagliuca takes over the effort to convince the IOC to send the Summer Olympics to the United States for the first time since 1996.The Managing Director of Bain Capital and formerly a Vice Chairman of the bid, he will replace construction magnate John Fish, the point man through a domestic competition in which Boston was selected by the USOC as the American bid city.“I think it’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for Massachusetts and for Boston,” Pagliuca said, arguing that the Olympics can be a catalyst for job-creation and urban renewal in a city that is looking ahead to its 400th birthday. “It’s a pretty exciting project. I haven’t seen many projects that are that impactful for cities.”Since being picked by the USOC in January, Boston’s bid has stumbled amid doubts by residents that the games can be delivered without taxpayer money.Recent polls show fewer than half of the residents support the city’s bid, though the number statewide jumps to nearly 60 percent if public money is not involved.The struggles have left the USOC second-guessing its decision to put Boston forward instead of Los Angeles, San Francisco and Washington, D.C.“The USOC has been supportive and also needs to see more detailed plans themselves,” Pagliuca said in a telephone interview with the Associated Press, adding that more details will be released next month. “I think that’s going to be great for the USOC, for the IOC and for the people of Boston.”Also added to the organizing committee on Thursday as senior advisers were Red Sox President Larry Lucchino, who has helped three major league baseball teams build new stadiums, and local advertising executive and philanthropist Jack Connors. Peter Roby, the Director of Northeastern University’s Center for Sport in Society, joined the bid as a Vice Chairman.“Today’s announcement adds to an already impressive team at Boston 2024 and showcases the incredible support the bid enjoys from Boston’s business, civic, educational and political leadership,” USOC CEO Scott Blackmun said in a statement.“I look forward to working closely with Mayor (Marty) Walsh, Steve Pagliuca and everyone committed to this bid to successfully finish what we’ve started, and bring the Games to the U.S.”The USOC has said it will submit a formal bid to the IOC in September; if Boston can’t rally public support, the national governing body could turn to Los Angeles — which hosted the games in 1932 and 1984 — as a backup. The U.S. nominee is expected to compete against Rome; Paris; Hamburg, Germany; and Budapest, Hungary.NBA Commissioner Adam Silver told the AP he has faith that Pagliuca “will do everything to ensure his great city is appropriately showcased to the world.”“Steve combines tremendous sports and finance experience with great integrity, an unrivaled work ethic and a passion for bringing positive social impact to the Boston community,” Silver said.But the group No Boston Olympics said that management is not the problem.“The public’s opposition to Boston 2024 is about the bid itself, not about who is calling the shots,” the group said in a statement.“A change in leadership doesn’t change the fact that the bid requires building the three most expensive Olympic venues from scratch. Boston 2024 remains a risky deal that asks taxpayers to foot the bill for cost overruns.”(JIMMY GOLEN, AP Sports Writer) TweetPinShare0 Shareslast_img read more

Mike Gundy On the Spring Game: ‘We’re an Improved Team’

first_imgMike Gundy, ever the deferrer, thinks the Spring Game went pretty well but that Oklahoma State still has a long way to go as a team. He talked about some of the highlights after the festivities wrapped up on Saturday at Boone Pickens Stadium.“I thought the defense played really, really well,” said head coach Mike Gundy on Saturday after his defense mucked up what’s going to be an interesting 2016 offense. “Some guys made plays and we were able to run some of our offense and have a good day.“Overall it was a good day for us. The real work starts now. Finish up in the classroom over the next two weeks and get in the weight room and get ready for a great summer.” The defense was impressive. As Kyle B. points out here, it was much more impressive than the offense.Justin Phillips with a nice interception for Team Black! #okstate— Cowboy Football (@CowboyFB) April 16, 2016Gundy doesn’t seem too concerned about the lack of a run game for the third (?) straight year.“We’re in a divided unit, we substitute a lot in a lot of our packages, so there’s kind of a minimal opportunity for us to be diverse as we want to,” Gundy said. “As is the case in most springs, there’s an advantage for the defense. They’ve seen the same plays for two months, but they’ve got to get lined up and make plays also.”Which they did. Gundy mentioned that he really liked the play of Jarrell Owens and Jordan Brailford (for obvious reasons).“We’re an improved team,” added Gundy.But.“We have a lot of work ahead of us.”I guess I shouldn’t be surprised by Gundy saying this is an improved team, but I think I am. You didn’t lose a ton in terms of numbers, but man, you lost a lot of leadership. Seth Jacobs, Ryan Simmons, Emmanuel Ogbah, Jimmy Bean and David Glidden is a lot to lose when it comes to being an elite team. So while you might be able to plug in some bodies, it’s going to be tough for this team to replicate its 10-win season from a year ago (Gundy even noted that depth was a concern at a couple of positions). But he also said on Saturday that they’re improved.Five months until we find out.If you’re looking for the comments section, it has moved to our forum, The Chamber. You can go there to comment and holler about these articles, specifically in these threads. You can register for a free account right here and will need one to comment.If you’re wondering why we decided to do this, we wrote about that here. Thank you and cheers!last_img read more

A New App for Reporting CustomerService Issues

first_img 2 min read March 7, 2012 This story appears in the March 2012 issue of . Subscribe » Attend this free webinar and learn how you can maximize efficiency while getting the most critical things done right. Free Webinar | Sept 5: Tips and Tools for Making Progress Toward Important Goals Register Now » Unless there’s a serious problem, most people don’t pay attention to those “How am I driving?” stickers on the backs of commercial vehicles. But for Joe Beninato, a veteran of multiple Silicon Valley startups, the stickers got him thinking: Why was there not a similar reporting system for the slew of service employees–waiters, store clerks, flight attendants–consumers deal with every day? Could there be a way for him to quickly let companies know how their employees are performing?In early 2010 the Los Altos, Calif., resident began working on Tello, a mobile platform and app that allows users to report on customer service–and only that (as opposed to such services as Yelp, TripAdvisor and Google’s Place Pages, which can get cluttered with reviewer comments on everything from pricing to décor). Soon after Beninato set up shop, he attracted $1 million in seed funding from a team of 10 early-stage angel investors.Since then, the iPhone and mobile web app has grown to “thousands of users and thousands of businesses,” Beninato says, driven largely by word-of-mouth. In February, the company launched Tello for Business, which immediately notifies business owners or managers when customer service reviews are posted, so they can get a jump on damage control if necessary.Beninato, who hopes consumers will check Tello before making a purchase, is enjoying his front-row look into the world of employee-customer interaction. Surprisingly, he says, “80 percent of the ratings are positive,” adding, “We were expecting predominantly complaints, but it’s been the exact opposite of that. People are trying to thank someone for doing a good job for them.” last_img read more

Egypt upset at latest US travel warning

first_img Source: The Associated Press << Previous PostNext Post >> Share Tags: Egypt, Travel Alert CAIRO — Egypt has expressed “discontent’” over the latest U.S. travel warning to the Mideast country, saying the notice makes a false distinction between terrorist groups and violent political organizations.Foreign Ministry spokesman, Ahmed Abu Zeid, said on Thursday that the wording of the travel advisory was dissatisfactory.He says it is “unacceptable” to distinguish between violent political and militants since any group that uses violence is a terrorist one _ a reference to the now outlawed Muslim Brotherhood group.The U.S. advisory on Wednesday urges Americans to consider the risks of travel to Egypt.It came just days after a series of militant attacks, including a blitz in Sinai that killed 23 Egyptian soldiers and a stabbing attack on foreign tourists that killed two German women at a Red Sea resort. Friday, July 21, 2017 Egypt upset at latest U.S. travel warninglast_img read more

MSC Cruises takes delivery of MSC Seaside signs orders for two more

first_img Thursday, November 30, 2017 Share << Previous PostNext Post >> MSC Cruises takes delivery of MSC Seaside, signs orders for two more ships Tags: MSC Cruisescenter_img Posted by Travelweek Group MONFALCONE, ITALY — MSC Cruises officially took delivery of its new flagship MSC Seaside at a recent ceremony in Italy. The Seaside is the cruise line’s second newly-built ship to come into service in 2017, and is being hailed as a completely new prototype of innovative ship building and design.With a guest capacity of 5,119, MSC Seaside will homeport in Miami and begin sailing in the Caribbean where it will call at various ports in the East and West Caribbean. Its sister ship MSC Seaview will come into service in June 2018, starting its summer season in the Mediterranean.During the delivery ceremony, MSC Cruises and ship-building company Fincantieri also signed orders for the construction of two Seaside EVO ships, for a total investment of €1.8 billion. The initial slot reservation agreement to build a third Seaside Class ship to be delivered in 2021 has been replaced to instead build the first of two Seaside EVO ships. The second ship is set to come into service in 2023.More news:  Flights cancelled as British Airways hit by computer problem“As we are nearing the end of 2017, we can look back on a year when we enjoyed unprecedented capacity growth. With two of the more innovative new ships in the industry having come into service in the past six months and now with the addition of two Seaside EVO ships to our investment plan, we are now even better positioned to further extend our global footprint. We are expecting the delivery of at least one new ship each year through 2026, with six to have come into service between 2017 and 2020,” said Pierfrancesco Vago, executive chairman of MSC Cruises.With the addition of these new ships, the Company’s already industry-unprecedented investment plan will now account for 12 new ships to be built between 2017 and 2026, for an overall investment of EUR 10.5 billion.last_img read more