first_img40% 1st 35% 1 SAN MARCOS STAKES: UNITED WE STAND 8 47% 24% 2nd Mike Smith25 $406,527 WIFE OF THE BALD EAGLE, PEGGY WHITTINGHAM DIES AT 95 16 3 4 4 9 $117,621 18 12 41% 53% 17% 15 17 ASSISTANT STARTER RAMIREZ HAS SUPER BOWL CONNECTION 6 29% Jockey Standings 6 4 $277,581 Jorge Velez72 36% Ruben Fuentes37 24% 43% 1 5 11 9 20% 16% Mike Puype20 Umberto Rispoli53 1 Flavien Prat65 9 SANTA ANITA STATISTICS 23% Philip D’Amato43 $480,632 Peter Miller34 33% 10 2 15% 46% 13% 29% 16 $708,954 8 53% 10 25% 11 4 Tiago Pereira48 36% 4 4 5 Mario Gutierrez43 $211,842 Bob Baffert35 J.C. Diaz, Jr.42 $462,138 40% 14% 8 22% 5 4 15% 6 3 Mark Glatt31 ROADSTER ‘RAILED’ IN SATURDAY’S SAN PASQUAL STAKES 10% Money Won 5 1 Money Won Geovanni Franco38 6 13 15% 26% 37% 45% 55% 5 $833,612center_img ITM% $363,677 1 $145,075 Agapito Delgadillo29 8 4 30% Hector O. Palma17 38% $661,582 MIDCOURT NEEDS FAST START IN SATURDAY’S SAN PASQUAL 2 7 3rd Win% ITM% 48% 50% $100,171 $1,015,432 4 15% 9 4 Jeff Bonde11 5 2 14% 6 3 $686,094 Brian J. Koriner20 3 CLEOPATRA’S STRIKE COULD BE CROWNED IN SATURDAY’S SAN MARCOS Richard E. Mandella19 55% 74% 13% $235,580 Win% Drayden Van Dyke60 6 6 7 48% Doug F. O’Neill49 40% 7 63% $792,770 6 $348,759 $352,470 11% 1 $784,421 Joel Rosario72 8 39% 63% 42% 9 $212,481 TrainerSts 6 $423,428 32% 4 16 7 3 22% 1st (Current Through Sunday, January 26, 2020 Inclusive) 4 JockeyMts 1 4 Richard Baltas53 Abel Cedillo113 3 $185,481 5 2 5 12 Edwin Maldonado33 2 Michael W. McCarthy18 5 4 17% $393,165 $142,205 3rd $327,491 2nd $1,112,634 9% 11 SAN MARCOS STAKES: UNITED WE STAND United finished only a head behind eventual 2019 Runhappy Horse of the Year Bricks and Mortar at monstrous odds of 51-1 in the Breeders’ Cup Turf at Santa Anita on Nov. 2, and has been steady as they come since Richard Mandella received the five-year-old son of Giant’s Causeway eight races back from Roger Attfield, who conditioned the gelding for his first three career starts in 2018 at Woodbine.Mandella expects the stretch-running chestnut to continue to show good form in Saturday’s Grade II San Marcos Stakes at a mile and a quarter on grass even though he’s “shortening up” from two straight mile and a half marathons.“He’s doing very well and he’s run well all year,” the Hall of Fame trainer said. “He’ll need to be a little sharper going a mile and a quarter instead of a mile and a half, but I think he is.”The Breeders’ Cup Turf and the Grade II Hollywood Turf Cup, United’s last race Dec. 1 at Del Mar, each were contested at a mile and a half.Owned by LNJ Foxwoods and bred by Rosemont Farm, LLC in Kentucky, United has a 3-3-1 record from 11 starts with earnings of $893,549. Victory in the San Marcos is worth $120,000 and would make United a millionaire with a bankroll of $1,013,549.The San Marcos, race seven on Saturday: Chosen Vessel, (12-1) Drayden Van Dyke; Cleopatra’s Strike, (2-1) Abel Cedillo; Multiplier, (12-1) Umberto Rispoli; United, (8-5) Flavien Prat; Brown Storm, (6-1) Hector Berrios; Campaign, (scratched) Rafael Bejarano and Oscar Dominguez, (5-2) Joel Rosario.CLEOPATRA’S STRIKE COULD BE CROWNED IN SATURDAY’S SAN MARCOSMost recently, beaten a neck going a mile and one eighth on turf in the Grade II San Gabriel Stakes Jan. 4, trainer Phil D’Amato’s Cleopatra’s Strike rates a huge chance in Saturday’s Grade II San Marcos Stakes at 1 ¼ miles on turf.“He’s found his top form,” said D’Amato on Thursday.  “I like the distance.  He’s one for two at a mile and a quarter and his win came here in a Grade II (John Henry Turf Classic, three starts back on Sept. 28), so we feel good about his chances.  Abel (Cedillo) rode him last time and he won on him in the John Henry. He works him every time and he knows him well. This horse is very tactical, so we’re ready to go.”A 7-year-old Ontario, Canadian-bred gelding by Smart Strike out of the Sky Classic mare Cleopatra’s Needle, Cleopatra’s Strike, who was originally based in Toronto, will be making his fifth start for D’Amato on Saturday.  With an overall mark of 27-4-10-2, he has earnings of $428,844.BAFFERT WOULD PREFER FAST LANE FOR ROADSTER IN SAN PASQUALA winner of last year’s Grade I Santa Anita Derby, Bob Baffert’s Roadster has drawn the rail in a field of 10 older horses going a mile and one eighth in Saturday’s Grade II, $200,000 San Pasqual Stakes, an iconic prep for the Grade I Santa Anita Handicap on March 7.Winless in five subsequent starts, the 4-year-old Quality Road colt comes off a solid second place finish to Omaha Beach going seven furlongs in the Grade I Malibu Stakes on Dec. 28.“I got the damn rail again,” mused Baffert on Thursday morning.  “This horse is doing really well.  He got too far back early in that race, but he came running.  I’d like to see him in the race a little more…I’m happy to see we got a large field.”Dating back to 1999 with Silver Charm, Baffert has won the San Pasqual a record five times, most recently with Hoppertunity in 2015.SHIRREFFS SAYS MIDCOURT NEEDS FAST START IN SATURDAY’S SAN PASQUALMost recently a well beaten third by top older horse Gift Box going a mile and one sixteenth in the Grade II San Antonio Stakes on Dec. 28, trainer John Shirreffs is quietly confident about Midcourt’s chances going a mile and one eighth in Saturday’s Grade II San Pasqual Stakes.“He kind of stumbled away from the gate in the San Antonio,” said Shirreffs on Thursday. “Victor (Espinoza) said he thought the ground broke away from under him.  Then he got carried wide by Pete Eurton’s horse (Draft Pick, also owned by C R K Stable) going into the first turn and you knew it was gonna be pretty tough from there.“Horses weren’t closing that day, but he did make a good run, so we were happy with that.  With this horse, just getting away from the gate well is important…He needs to get into stride and when he does, he’s much more comfortable.”The San Pasqual, race eight on Saturday: Roadster, (7-2) Joel Rosario; Route Six Six, (20-1) Jose Valdivia, Jr.; Restrainedvengence, (4-1) Abel Cedillo; King Abner, (4-1) Flavien Prat; Midcourt, (3-1) Victor Espinoza; Instagrand, (12-1) Umberto Rispoli; California Street, (12-1) Mike Smith; Two Thirty Five, (8-1) Ruben Fuentes; Bold Endeavor, (30-1) Mario Gutierrez and Combatant, (10-1) Drayden Van Dyke.PEGGY WHITTINGHAM DIES AT 95Story by Evan Hammonds, BloodHorse.comPeggy Whittingham, wife of the late Hall of Fame trainer Charlie Whittingham, died Jan. 28 at her home in San Marcos, Calif. She passed with her family by her side following a long battle with breast cancer. She was 95.A service will be held at Solano Beach (near Del Mar) on Feb. 29, Leap Day, on what would have been her 96th birthday.“She had been dealing with the cancer for quite a few years,” said son Mike Whittingham. “It was very slow growing for a long time, and then all of a sudden it decided not to be. She’s been in decline for a few months.”“My mother was a real force,” said daughter Charlene von Bluecher. “Anybody who knew her would agree. She was a world traveler. One of the hospice workers who came to help kept calling her ‘princess,’ and I said, ‘Oh, no. She is not a princess, she’s a queen.’”“A lot of the older folks would know that she went toe-to-toe with dad,” Mike Whittingham said. “They were very social and social among a lot of the old-time celebrities. “And what I mean by toe to toe, sometimes dad would call from the track, ‘Hey, I’m bringing home so-and-so … it might be 20 people …and mom would have dinner ready and a party prepped by the time they got home. She was quite an entertainer.”And a world traveler.“She went on quite a few trips with Marie Jones,” von Bluecher said. “They took a motor home all over the place and toured Asia together. Back in the old days she ran around with quite a few people like Doc Harthill, the Maddens, and the Hirschs,” Mike Whittingham added. “One of her best friends was (actress) Angie Dickinson. They spent a lot of time together and she was very supportive after Dad died.”Dickinson at one time was married to the musician and successful Thoroughbred owner Burt Bacharach.Peggy “was a lovely person,” said breeder/owner Arthur Hancock III, who raced the Whittingham-trained Sunday Silence. “She and Charlie were very much in love; you could tell they had a great relationship. They were very compatible. She certainly was Charlie’s rock.”She is survived by her two children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by Charlie, who died at age 86 in 1999, and her son, Taylor.COMEBACKING ASSISTANT STARTER RAMIREZ HAS SUPER BOWL CONNECTIONSanta Anita welcomed back popular assistant starter Hector Ramirez this morning, as this will be his first race day since being sidelined with a heart issue this past July at Del Mar.“The doctors at Scripps La Jolla did a fantastic job,” said Ramirez, 58, on a bright sunny Thursday morning in Santa Anita’s quarter mile chute.  “They found the problem right away, operated on me and I’m really happy to be back.”Originally an exercise rider, Ramirez has been working on the starting gate since 1986.  “My brother Gilbert rode for a long time and my wife Cathy actually rode races for a short time on the fairs up north,” he said.And speaking of his wife, Ramirez noted that his family is a bit conflicted as to who to root for in this Sunday’s Super Bowl.“It’s kind of amazing.  My father-in-law, Chuck Kenney, was an offensive lineman with the 49ers in 1947, and my brother-in-law, Bill Kenney, played quarterback for the Chiefs from 1980 to 1988 (made the Pro Bowl in 1983).”So, who is Hector Ramirez rooting for?“I’m from New Mexico and I’m a Cowboy fan at heart,” he said pointing to his cap.  “But in this game, I gotta go for the Chiefs.  They’re hitting on all cylinders and I love watching Mahomes play quarterback.”SIMULCAST WAGERING NOW OFFERED IN SANTA ANITA SPORTS BOOKIn addition to the Grandstand Paddock Room, Santa Anita is now offering free parking and admission on Wednesdays and Thursdays for fans attending its Sports Book, which adjoins the Turf Terrace on the Mezzanine level. State of the art in every respect, the Santa Anita Sports Book features wall-to-wall flat screen television monitors and plenty of betting windows. For additional information, please visit LINES: Morning Line for Saturday’s Grade III Robert B. Lewis Stakes, Race 6: Encoder, (8-1) Mike Smith; Thousand Words, (4-5) Flavien Prat; Tizamagician, (3-1) Victor Espinoza; Royal Act, (15-1) Abel Cedillo; High Velocity, (3-1) Joel Rosario and Zimba Warrior, (15-1) Jose Valdivia, Jr…McKinzie and McKale both worked a bullet six furlongs Thursday in 1:11.60 for Bob Baffert.  Unbeaten in two starts, Derby hopeful Authentic worked five furlongs in 1:01.40 also for Baffert…Other notable works included the Craig Lewis pair of Club Aspen and Warren’s Showtime, with both drilling a half mile in 48 flat, and Bolo worked five furlongs from the gate in 1:01.40 for Carla Gaines…The following jockeys have been suspended: Iggy Puglisi (Feb. 1 and 2) for a riding crop violation on Heartfullofstars in the seventh race Jan. 24; Anthony Locke (10 days, Feb. 2, 6, 7, 8, 9, 14, 15, 16, 17 and 21) for causing interference on Grey Tsunami in the second race on Jan. 26; and Assael Espinoza (two days, Feb. 2 and 6) for interference on Fort Dodge in the eighth race on Jan. 20… Santa Anita offers $2 beer and $6 specialty cocktails each Friday at designated locations throughout the track. Specialty cocktails include a Baldwin Buck, Margarita and other selected cocktails. There is also free Club House (including Santa Anita’s Sports Book) and General Admission each Friday . . . FIRST POST ON BIG GAME SUNDAY, FEB. 2., IS EARLY AT 11 A.M.  COME FOR THE RACES AND STAY FOR THE BIG GAME!LATEST CONTENT FROM XBTV:FEATURES:XBTV Thursday: What to Watch for at Santa Anita Park on January 30th, 2020Stronach 5 All-Star Ticket for January 31st, 2020WORKOUTS:Authentic (Baffert) 1-30-20Shanghai Truffles (Gallagher) 1-30-20Ginger Nut (Sadler) 1-30-20McKinzie (Outside) and McKale (Baffert) 1-30-20Sold It (Outside) and Keno’d (O’Neill) 1-27-20Tapitha Bonita (Miyadi) 1-27-20Kitty Boom Boom (Baltas) 1-27-20Gift Box (Sadler) 1-26-20Roadster (Outside) and Heck Yeah (Baffert) 1-26-20United (Mandella) 1-26-20Clivetty (Outside) and Instagrand (Chatlos) 1-25-20Campaign (Outside) and Combatant (Sadler) 1-25-20last_img read more

Jett Manuel leaves good impression in belated Ginebra debut

first_imgAlmazan vows to comeback stronger after finals heartbreak But even in just limited time, Manuel was able to show flashes of brilliance, the same kind of display that made him a star as a University of the Philippines Fighting Maroon back in his collegiate days.Although the game was virtually over at the time Manuel checked in, Cone still took notice of his play.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSTim Cone, Ginebra set their sights on elusive All-Filipino crownSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSAfter winning title, time for LA Tenorio to give back to Batangas folk“It’s nice to see Jet step out to get his debut and do well. We’ve been seeing that in practice what you saw today,” Cone said after the Gin Kings crushed the Picanto, 103-77.Manuel had eight points, including a rare four-point play that triggered a frenzied celebration from his teammates and Ginebra fans at Mall of Asia Arena, and two assists. OSG plea to revoke ABS-CBN franchise ’a duplicitous move’ – Lacson “All players want to play. We want to contribute. I’m not here to say that I’m gonna lift the franchise to another level or anything like that,” he said. “I’m happy where I am, and I’m just learning a lot as much as I can. So I’m hoping that this is the start that coach Tim trusts me that I can contribute in whatever way. Like I said, I just wanna stay ready.”Manuel, who was the last pick in the first round of the 2017 PBA Draft, may have established that trust that he would just have to nurture as he gets more opportunities along the way.“As you know, I’m not a guy that throw guys into the fire. They have to work their way up the ladder and he’s done a good job of working his way out,” Cone said. “So every time you go out and do something like that, as a young player, you build trust as you go out to play in big moments. So, it was a big moment for him this time.”Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. OSG plea to revoke ABS-CBN franchise ’a duplicitous move’ – Lacson MOST READ LATEST STORIES View comments The 24-year-old guard, however, couldn’t care any less for his stats. What stood out for him is the final score.“I’m just really happy that we got the win. We needed the win and coach has emphasized that we have to treat this game like its’ a playoff game, ’cause it’s a must-win for us,” he said. “So more than myself, I was just really happy that the team won. We’re getting back into it, and I hope this is the start of a better ending for the conference.”His first points in the PBA was a jumper from the left baseline and he didn’t even think about celebrating.“Get back on defense,” he said with a chuckle when asked what went through his mind when he made his first basket. “That’s what Coach Tim wants me to get a habit of, because he always tells me in practice that he’s forming habits for me. So when I made that shot, I wasn’t really thinking of anything spectacular. It’s just that ‘where’s my man?’”Manuel hopes to have made a good account of himself that it led to building Cone’s faith in him.ADVERTISEMENT Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew Russian appeal hearings end with no immediate decision Ginebra guard Jett Manuel. PBA IMAGESIt took a while for Jett Manuel to make his PBA debut, but the Barangay Ginebra rookie certainly had a first game to remember.Manuel was inserted into the game 17 seconds left in the third quarter with the Gin Kings ahead by 28, 78-50, and went on to play for the rest of the game.ADVERTISEMENT Jiro Manio arrested for stabbing man in Marikina Steam emission over Taal’s main crater ‘steady’ for past 24 hours Nonito Donaire vs Naoya Inoue is BWAA 2019 Fight of the Year Michael Porter Jr. stays patient as playing time increases Newsome sets focus on helping Bolts open new PBA season on right track Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player awardlast_img read more

Over 300 reports of financial crimes received in 2018 – FIU Director

first_imgFor the year 2018 alone, the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) has received more than 300 reports of crimes ranging from drug trafficking to money laundering and even corruption.FIU DirectorMatthew LangevineThis is according to FIU Director Matthew Langevine, in a recent interview with Guyana Times.According to Langevine, of these 300 reports, his Unit’s investigations would have led to more than 25 intelligence reports being completed. These reports, he said, were then forwarded to FIU’s sister agency, the Special Organised Crime Unit (SOCU).“Based on those intelligence reports, which would have covered a number of areas, including suspected drug trafficking that would have led to suspected money laundering, there were a number of cases related to suspected tax evasion, and corruption-related cases,” Langevine explained.“So, we’ve been working hard. I think we can look forward to the first annual report being published by the FIU within the next month or so, as required by the recent amendments to the [Anti-Money Laundering and Countering Financing of Terrorism] AML/CFT Act.”Langevine explained that their work encompassed not only the reports they have shared with their counterpart, but also training and outreaches with other stakeholders. When it comes to challenges his Unit faces, Langevine identified receiving data from reporting entities as the number one challenge.“One of the important things for the FIU is receiving data, information from the reporting entities. I think one of the challenges we continue to encounter is that there are still a number of sectors not reporting to us.”“Specifically, in the areas of the designated non-financial entities. The lawyers and accountants come to mind. On the positive side, we’ve recently had a couple of workshops with those entities and I think it was well-received, especially from the accounting side”.The FIU is an autonomous agency that investigates financial crimes. It operates under the AML/CFT Act. The Unit has to work closely with other agencies, including the Guyana Revenue Authority and the Gaming Authority.But while the FIU has been walking the straight and narrow, its sister agency SOCU has been beleaguered with problems, since an audit into its operations was carried out by the Guyana Police Force (GPF).The audit into SOCU, an arm of the Police, was first ordered by Police Commissioner Leslie James in February following claims of grave mismanagement which included the misuse of its operational fund.The audit of the financial records of SOCU subsequently uncovered serious irregularities, including the falsification of records, and it has recommended immediate transfers and a fraud investigation of several of the discrepancies, sources say.It has resulted in Public Security Minister Khemraj Ramjattan announcing in May of this year that several SOCU ranks would be transferred or even have their services terminated based on the findings.Added to this, SOCU has had several of its cases tossed out by the courts, including one involving a number of charges against former Guyana Rice Development Board (GRDB) executives and Guyana Bank of Trade and Industry (GBTI) Directors.last_img read more

Govt defends Patterson’s oil concession claims

first_img….Jagdeo, Ram maintain Patterson lied, was ‘completely wrong’Minister of State Joseph Harmon has come to the defence of his Cabinet colleague, Public Infrastructure Minister David Patterson, when he this past week claimed that all of the offshore petroleum blocks had been farmed out by former President Bharrat Jagdeo.Public Infrastructure Minister David PattersonThe former President, now Opposition Leader, had repudiated the claims as lies and pointed to reference material supplied by the Guyana Geology and Mines Commission (GGMC), which pointed to blocks still being available.According to the Government’s Chief Spokesman, however, “When Minister of Public Infrastructure David Patterson speaks as a Minister of Government, he speaks on behalf of the coalition Government.”He was at the time addressing members of the media for a post-Cabinet briefing and was asked to give clarity to pronouncements since the claims by Patterson have been dismissed by numerous persons as inaccurate.Minister Harmon told media operatives, “I am quite sure that Minister Patterson is quite aware of the statement that he made with respect of the offshore concessions, I don’t know where the Leader of the Opposition is seeking to have some kind of confusion about it, he knows fully what Minister Patterson is talking about.”According to Minister Harmon, “Minister Patterson I know is technically competent and careful enough to be able to explain that situation again if necessary, but Minister Patterson was talking about offshore concessions.”He did indicate to members of the media that there was a Government position on the matter as against an A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) or Alliance For Change (AFC) version.Social commentators, Chartered Accountant and practicing Attorney, Christopher Ram, was among the first to dismiss Patterson’s assertion this past week as erroneous.Speaking at a public talk held at the Moray House on Friday last on the oil sector, its opportunities and challenges, Ram had called on Minister Patterson to refrain from misleading the Guyanese people on what exactly had been given out.Ram told those in attendance at the event held at Moray House on Camp Street, Georgetown, that when Patterson insinuated that the Bharrat Jagdeo Administration had given out all of the petroleum oil blocks, he was in fact 100 per cent wrong.“At least stick to the facts, if you don’t know the facts don’t speak, this was completely wrong,”Ram noted too that not only are there several petroleum blocks still available, but the coalition APNU/AFC did in fact hand out petroleum blocks to operators when it took office.He pointed to the Petroleum Prospecting Licence and Production Sharing Agreement with the joint venture team of Tullow Guyana B V and Eco (Atlantic) Guyana Inc for a concession of 1801 square kilometres in the Orinduik Block, offshore, Guyana which was issued in January 2016 under the coalition Administration.Opposition Leader Jagdeo had subsequently called for Minister Patterson to be fired for his plethora of blatant lies.He had accused Minister Patterson of seeking to deflect from the substantive allegations he had laid, namely that relatives and friends of Ministers in the Administration were applying for Exploration and Prospecting Licences in order to sell to third party for a profit.Jagdeo told media operatives, these companies comprise complex shareholding structures meant to perpetuate the corrupt act.At a press conference on Tuesday last, Jagdeo produced a map dated February 2017 from the Guyana Geology and Mines Commission (GGMC), and noted that only 10 licences were issued under the former Government, none of which were issued under his tenure.He added that several blocks are still available.The Opposition Leader charged, “…it is a clever strategy on the part of Patterson not to deal with the substance of what I was saying which is that there is corruption, but to then go and say that Jagdeo gave out all oil blocks and that there is nothing left… imagine that these people went to a press conference and said Jagdeo can’t be trusted. He is a liar. Then they proceed to lie to the nation that there are no more blocks available when their own Government statistics show that there are several blocks available.He was adamant, “it is a lie by Patterson. It is incompetence and it is sinister; because now that he says that there is nothing available, Jagdeo gave it all out it, means that they can secretly give out all the substantial blocks because (as far as the nation knows) there is nothing left.”Jagdeo insisted Minister Patterson should be fired for lying to the nation. “This Minister should be fired for lying… what Patterson said at that press conference is a lie and no amount of obfuscation, no amount of the Kaieteur News’ lies that they keep peddling and the fake news can change that fact… there is not a thread of truth in the fabric of lies which Patterson presented to the media.”last_img read more

Legislation to meet conditions of US$35M World Bank loan

first_imgFinancial bills tabled in ParliamentThe recent tabling of a range of financial bills by the A Partnership for National Unity (APNU)/the Alliance For Change (AFC) coalition Government is primarily aimed at meeting certain conditions for the US$35 million World Bank loan that Government has been granted.Opposition Leader Bharrat JagdeoThis is according to Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo, who said that the five bills are: the Financial Institutions (Amendment) Bill 2018, Insurance (Amendment) Bill 2018, National Payments System Bill 2018, Bank of Guyana (Amendment) Bill 2018 and the Deposit Insurance Bill 2018.Jagdeo explained that the contents of these bills have direct relation to Guyana being able to access the World Bank loan. According to him, while some may want to believe that the World Bank is giving the Government some assistance, it is more aimed at steering the Finance Ministry in a certain direction.“The loan has several conditions. It will be helpful for Private Sector and all those who are interested in the legislation before Parliament now to look at this document,” he advised, while explaining that the World Proposed Programmatic Development Policy Credit lists several conditions that have to be met.But the Opposition Leader noted that many of the conditions set out by this institution did not apply to the local economy. In some cases, it requires a longer phase. In other words, Jagdeo said that focus should be placed on looking at the local circumstances before any change to legislation is made.“There are procedures for winding up a bank’s operations, deposit insurance, emergency short-term liquidity facilities, all licensed insurance companies, cashless transactions (the payment system) and they have targets of what has to be done in how many years,” he added.Another important observation made by the former Head of State is the fact that the Government can get the US$35 million if the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) works in a certain way.He pointed to the fact that the World Bank has set as a condition that the FIU must have 20 reports referred to the Police for investigation into money laundering and 10 updates to all of the 2017 cases. The World Bank is also demanding 25 cases between June 2019 and June 2020.Jagdeo has noted that the Government has not mentioned these facts, and he also believes that all of the financial bills have been drafted by external consultants as well.Only seven days ago, the US$35 million loan was approved by the World Bank to support Guyana’s efforts to strengthen the financial sector and fiscal management, and but more importantly, to better prepare the country to benefit from its newly-discovered oil and gas reserves.Finance Minister Winston Jordan has said that the financing would provide critical support to Guyana’s reform agenda and efforts to strengthen institutions and build a resilient economy that was capable of withstanding both external and domestic shocks. These reforms, he said, will be key to guide the management of oil revenues for the benefit of present and future generations.Meanwhile, following the disbursement of this loan, World Bank Country Director for the Caribbean, Tahseen Sayed said that Guyana was making important strides to promote financial resilience and improve fiscal management, and has embarked on a broad-based reform programme.“These reforms will be key to build a strong economy that is underpinned by a strategic management of public resources for the benefit of the Guyanese people,” Sayed said.The financing focuses on strengthening financial stability and enabling sound financial development to promote macroeconomic stability and long-term growth. In particular, it will support banking reforms and depositor protection, the establishment of a deposit insurance scheme, implementation of a new insurance law, and the country’s anti-money laundering efforts.This Development Policy Credit, the first of a series of two programmatic financial and fiscal development policy credits, is financed by the International Development Association (IDA).last_img read more

African teams ‘need focus on youth’ to make World Cup progress

first_img0Shares0000Senegal missed out on the World Cup knockout rounds because of their disciplinary record© AFP Fabrice COFFRINIMOSCOW, Russia, July 12 – Former Nigeria star Emmanuel Amunike says African teams need to focus on improving youth development after a poor showing from the continent’s representatives at the World Cup.None of Africa’s five teams made it past the group stage in Russia, with Nigeria, Senegal, Tunisia, Egypt and Morocco managing only three wins between them. “It was a disappointment for the African teams and the African continent,” admitted Amunike, who was speaking at a press conference in Moscow on Thursday as part of FIFA’s technical study group analysing the World Cup.“A lot of people were expecting African teams to progress beyond what they have done previously, but unfortunately it didn’t materialise,”Senegal were particularly unlucky not to make the last 16, losing out to Japan only because of their poorer disciplinary record.But it was a big step backwards after both Nigeria and Algeria made it to the knockout rounds in 2014 and Ghana went to the quarter-finals in South Africa eight years ago.Indeed, it was the first time since 1982 that no team from the continent had made it past the first round.“The truth is that we all are aware that football has developed a lot and will continue to change, and we in Africa, if we don’t embrace the responsibility and see how we can develop our youth, will continue to live on dreams,” added Amunike.A winger with Sporting Lisbon and Barcelona in the 1990s, Amunike played for the Super Eagles at the 1994 World Cup, scoring as they lost in extra-time to Italy in the last 16.He later moved into coaching and had a successful spell working with Nigeria’s under-17 side.“I was privileged to coach the under-17s and I can tell you that there is a lot of raw talent but raw talent, without polishing them, will not give you a result,” he said.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)last_img read more


first_imgUnder starter’s orders! The start of today’s super Northwest 10K in Letterkennny. All pics by kind permission of Brian McDaid. The winner of the Northwest 10K Kieran Gallagher.The one and only John Wilkie.ANOTHER SUPER NORTHWEST 10K IN LETTERKENNY – PICTURE SPECIAL! was last modified: May 1st, 2016 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:Northwest 10Kpicture speciallast_img

Has Biomimetics Surpassed Biology?

first_imgAn article on Science Daily announced an invention that is “Better Than the Human Eye: Tiny Camera With Adjustable Zoom Could Aid Endoscopic Imaging, Robotics, Night Vision.”  While true that human eyes do not have zoom lenses, how does the comparison hold up?    The invention both imitates and surpasses human vision in some respects: “Researchers from Northwestern University and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign are the first to develop a curvilinear camera, much like the human eye, with the significant feature of a zoom capability, unlike the human eye.”  They even call it an “eyeball camera.”  PhysOrg shows a picture of the device, which “has a 3.5x optical zoom, takes sharp images and is only the size of a nickel.”    Previous research by this team, who had “drawn inspiration from animals,” had shown the optical benefits of curved photodetector arrays (08/07/2008).  This time they have upped the ante by controlling the curvature with hydraulics.  Both the simple lens and the photodetector array can have their curvature adjusted by water pressure, allowing for variable zoom.  “We were inspired by the human eye, but we wanted to go beyond the human eye,” said Yonggang Huang at Northwestern.  “Our goal was to develop something simple that can zoom and capture good images, and we’ve achieved that.”    Does the original paper boast about this being an improvement over the eyeball?  In PNAS,1 Jung et al began by saying, “Mammalian eyes provide the biological inspiration for hemispherical cameras, where Petzval-matched curvature in the photodetector array can dramatically simplify lens design without degrading the field of view, focal area, illumination uniformity, or image quality.”  Camera makers have already gone beyond nature by inventing zoom lenses: “Interestingly, biology and evolution2 do not provide guides for achieving the sort of large-range, adjustable zoom capabilities that are widely available in man-made cameras.”    The authors took note of two cases in biology where animals have a kind of binary zoom: (1) “in avian vision, where shallow pits in the retina lead to images with two fixed levels of zoom (50% high magnification in the center of the center of the field of view),” and (2) “imaging properties occur, but in an irreversible fashion, during metamorphosis in amphibian vision to accommodate transitions from aquatic to terrestrial environments.”  (Recall a related capability in cormorant eyes, 05/24/2004).  The “eyeball camera,” however, unlike animal eyes, would be capable of continuous zoom.    The new invention is admittedly simple.  Its resolution is only 16 x 16 pixels, compared to the human retina’s resolution of 126 megapixels (100 million rods 07/13/2001 and 6-7 million cones).  So as interesting as their device is, there is a huge disparity between what they achieved and what we take for granted with human vision (by almost six orders of magnitude in resolution and probably a similar amount in light-gathering power).  It is, however, an important proof of concept: “Although the fill factor and total pixel count in the reported designs are moderate, there is nothing fundamental about the process that prevents significant improvements,” they concluded.  The concepts they have demonstrated in this prototype “might be useful to explore.”1.  Jung et al, “Dynamically tunable hemispherical electronic eye camera system with adjustable zoom capability,” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, published online before print January 18, 2011, doi: 10.1073/pnas.1015440108.2.  This was the only mention of evolution in the paper.More power to this team and to all inventors inspired by biology.  Even if they succeed in improving on the eye some day, they will have supported intelligent design through and through.  Reverse engineering pays a compliment to the designer of what is being imitated.  In spite of their passing reference to evolution, their work has absolutely nothing to do with Darwin – you know, the old storyteller who got cold shudders thinking of the design of the human eye – and that was without knowing about its ideal optics (05/09/2002), waveguides (05/07/2010), clean-up crews (08/28/2003), image processing (05/22/2003), and much, much more.  “Biology and evolution do not provide guides,” they said.  Of course not; evolution is unguided.  It would be the blind leading the blind, so ditch the thought.    Human ingenuity can and does exceed biology all the time.  No animals explore space, or resolve distant quasars, or image the molecular motors in their own cells with X-ray diffraction.  God gave humans the minds and hands to expand their biological capabilities.  If scientists can invent eyeball-mimic cameras with zoom lenses, all for the good.  If they can get them to take high-def 3-D video at 126 megapixel resolution, repair themselves, reproduce themselves and run on potatoes, then we might consider them starting to come a little closer to a few of the engineering specs of the One who made “the seeing eye” (Proverbs 20:12).  Even such devices, though, would be useless without an even more complex brain to interpret them and to understand what it is they are seeing.  Let’s not be numbered among those who, having eyes, do not see (Mark 8:18).(Visited 29 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

The Downside of Low Gas Prices

first_imgWhither electric vehicles?In an interview about recent auto market trends, U.S. Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz conceded that electric vehicle (EV) sales were well behind the Administration’s goal of putting a million plug-in cars on the road by last year. Moniz seemed unconcerned about the shift back to SUVs and instead emphasized the importance of a “long-term view.”How do slowing sales of EVs, due at least in part to cheap gasoline, affect emissions?It is instructive to compare the effect of mainstream market shifts to the sales of EVs such as the Nissan Leaf (a battery-only car) or Chevy Volt (a plug-in hybrid with a small gasoline engine to extend its range). The EV market got a boost in 2008, which saw the launch of the high-profile Tesla Roadster along with spiking oil prices.Bolstered by tax credits and other generous subsidies, plug-in car sales grew rapidly and there are now over two dozen models available that charge from the electric grid for some or all of their energy. EV sales reached just over 122,000 by 2014, but have since fallen in the face of lower fuel prices, dropping to 116,000 in 2015 even as overall auto sales hit a new high.EVs directly emit no COâ‚‚ when running on battery power alone. Accounting for power plant emissions but recognizing that most EV sales have occurred in California and other states with cleaner-than-average electric grids, the typical electric car emits only about one-fourth of the COâ‚‚ of a similarly sized gasoline car.Based on that assumption and sales data, I estimate that the new EVs sold in 2015 cut COâ‚‚ emissions by roughly 0.26 million metric tons per year.On the other hand, the market share of vehicles that EPA classifies as light trucks for regulatory purposes rose from 33 percent to 40 percent over the past six years. That seven-point shift from relatively efficient cars to less efficient light trucks implies a COâ‚‚ emissions increase of 1.76 million metric tons per year, more than six times the emissions reduction from EVs.In other words, waning interest in fuel economy across the mainstream market slows climate progress much more than lagging sales of electric cars. Retail gasoline prices are now as low as they were in the “roaring ‘90s.” The 1990s, that is, when the energy crisis of the 1970s had faded from American consumers’ memories, the economy was strong and the market share of sport utility vehicles (SUVs) had more than tripled over the decade.As in the 1990s, low-cost gasoline is changing consumers’ habits, encouraging them to drive more and purchase less fuel-efficient vehicles. What’s different now is that U.S. automakers face far more stringent fuel-economy standards. The rules, which require automakers to have a fleet-wide, on-road average of roughly 40 miles per gallon by 2025, are the country’s primary policy for reducing carbon dioxide (COâ‚‚) emissions from motor vehicles.However, fuel prices have plummeted since these rules were put in place. What does cheap gasoline mean for the country’s progress in reducing emissions?To answer this question, we need to look at the interplay between gas prices and consumer behavior. We also need to consider the impact that technology and policy can have – and cannot have – on reducing emissions from motor vehicles. RELATED ARTICLES Social challengeUnfortunately, efforts to promote more fuel-efficient vehicles across the entire market are not nearly as robust as the social marketing, to say nothing of monetary incentives, directed at the electric and other alternative fuel niches.A 2013 study published by the National Academy of Sciences (for which I was a committee member) concluded that even for several decades ahead, the most substantial and lowest-cost ways to cut automobile COâ‚‚ emissions will still be ongoing improvements of gasoline vehicles. The study also found that even with good progress in battery technology, it will not be feasible to electrify most SUVs and other light trucks, which emit a disproportionate amount of COâ‚‚. Trying to run larger vehicles from a battery results in a vicious cycle of heavier weight and higher costs that would render the resulting vehicle both impractical and exorbitantly expensive.Automakers are regulated by a combination of Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions standards, which, relative to the 2015 level, target a further 40 percent cut in the new fleet-average COâ‚‚ emissions rate of both cars and light trucks by 2025. A National Academy study published last year found that ample technology is available to meet the 2025 target.As these regulations come up for review next year, the greater challenge will be weak consumer interest in efficiency, which makes it more profitable for automakers to offer still higher horsepower, larger vehicles, and other features that trade off against fuel economy.The question, then, is whether ways can be found to bolster consumer interest in fuel economy for environmental rather than economic reasons, so that progress can be maintained even when fuel prices are low.Indeed, the misalignment between consumer interest and the need for ongoing efficiency gains may only grow in the years ahead. Periods of high oil prices are likely to be transient for the foreseeable future if not indefinitely. This situation will require new approaches by policymakers, automakers, and environmental advocates, as well as creative social science research.Successfully confronting the social challenge of encouraging consumers to prioritize fuel efficiency – across the broad market of gasoline-powered personal vehicles – will open the door to greater progress on the car part of the climate challenge than can be achieved through technology alone. Déjà vu all over againWhen pump prices are high, consumers are motivated to drive less and choose fuel-efficient vehicles. As prices moderate, there is a weaker financial motive to economize on gas, making emissions reduction more difficult. This puts a greater burden on policy to sustain progress in spite of consumer disinterest.Petroleum is the largest source of COâ‚‚ emissions in the United States and, after coal, the second largest globally. Petroleum use is driven by demand for motor fuels, of which cars and personal light trucks consume the largest share. Because a car’s COâ‚‚ emissions are directly linked to its fuel economy, any gain in fuel efficiency results in lower COâ‚‚.For example, an SUV that gets 20 mpg emits 5.3 metric tons of COâ‚‚ during a typical 12,000 miles per year of driving, while a 30 mpg sedan emits 3.6 tons to cover the same distance.For over a year now, the national average fuel price has been much lower than the roughly $3.50 per gallon average of the previous few years, let alone the brief spike to over $4.00 per gallon in summer 2008.The University of Michigan Energy Survey’s affordability index earlier this year found that consumers feel gasoline is twice as affordable as it was before oil prices began sliding in mid-2014.It’s no surprise, then, that new vehicle sales are at a record high while the sales mix has shifted away from compact segments and back to trucks, larger SUVs, and more luxurious cars.The amount of driving is up again as well. We’ve seen this situation before when the energy crisis of a generation ago gave way to a resumption of consumption after oil prices tumbled in 1986.U.S. average retail gas prices and new light duty vehicle fuel economy since 1970.The adjoining graph compares the average fuel economy of new cars and light trucks to the nominal (“dollars of the day”) and real (inflated to 2015 dollars) price of gasoline since 1970. As the graph shows, fuel economy ratchets up as fuel prices rise. Conversely, low and stable fuel prices can cause fuel economy to backslide, which occurred from the late 1980s until a decade ago.During the 1990s, overall vehicle efficiency eroded as consumer tastes and automaker sales strategies fostered a shift to light trucks (vans, SUVs, and pickups), which are regulated more leniently than the cars (sedans, coupes, and station wagons) they displaced.A similar shift is again under way now, reflecting the tension between consumer buying habits and the need to cut carbon. Technology and importance of scaleThe relation between technology and efficiency, meanwhile, is more subtle than it might seem to observers outside the industry.The graph seems to suggest that technological progress for better fuel efficiency happened in spurts triggered by periods of rising fuel price.In fact, as measured by engineering metrics, the rate of technology change has been remarkably steady throughout this whole time period from the 1970s to date, as documented in a paper I coauthored a decade ago and confirmed more recently by colleagues from MIT. That is to say, automakers are continually improving the engineering of vehicles whether or not the improvements are used to raise fuel economy.In other words, regardless of the fuel price situation, there is always a latent potential to improve efficiency as vehicles are routinely redesigned and new models are introduced. But the extent to which the potential is realized depends on the priority given to higher fuel economy relative to other features customers value and automakers can readily sell.This means that modest changes in how much consumers prioritize fuel efficiency can significantly affect COâ‚‚ emissions, for either better or worse. If millions of consumers choose a larger or smaller vehicle, or select a higher or lower horsepower engine, it will have a far greater impact than a small niche of eco-minded consumers who purchase battery-electric or hydrogen vehicles. Green Building in the Cheap Energy EraHow Low Oil Prices Can Be Good for the EnvironmentThe Effect of Low Oil Prices on Climate EmissionsWill Self-Driving Cars Save Energy?More Tips for Improving MileageHouses Versus CarsReduce the Need for DrivingDesigning for the FutureU.S. Wind Energy Prices Hit an All-Time LowThe End of Peak Oil?PV Systems Have Gotten Dirt CheapThe Big Allure of Cheap PV John DeCicco is a research professor at the University of Michigan. This post originally appeared at The Conversation.last_img read more

Mike Rogers Dies

first_imgEnergy efficiency advocate Mike Rogers died on December 18, 2018. Rogers was best known for his work establishing the Home Performance With Energy Star program.I first met Rogers in 2003, when I interviewed him for an article in Energy Design Update. Like me, Rogers lived in Vermont. Every few years, we’d bump into each other at a conference, and once we encountered each other by chance on a hiking trail. (We were both climbing Camel’s Hump at the time.)Rogers was a leader in our industry, and an all-around good guy. He died too young, the victim of a rare and aggressive form of cancer. We’ll miss him.Anyone interested is reading more about Rogers’s remarkable life should read his obituary in the online version of Seven Days.last_img