Pesticide Safety

first_imgHundreds of people get sick each year from inappropriate pesticide use, but those who don’t deal with pesticides daily may not think about it very often.Pesticides are used in homes, workplaces, apartments, farms and other places where humans need to control pests such as weeds, insects, fungi, rodents and even viruses. Of the 11 states participating in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) pesticide safety program, workers reported 853 serious injuries from pesticides in 2011, according to the CDC.During National Pesticide Safety Education Month this February, University of Georgia Cooperative Extension personnel urge homeowners, and all Georgians, to learn more about the safe use, storage and disposal of pesticides. Land-grant universities across the nation provide programs to educate both public and private sector groups about pesticide safety.“Pesticide safety education is key to helping pesticide applicators, both commercial and agricultural, safely and effectively use available pesticides to protect their crops and livelihoods,” said Mickey Taylor, UGA Extension Pesticide Safety Education Program (PSEP) coordinator. “At the same time, they want to protect themselves, their employees and colleagues from any potential ill effects of pesticide use in addition to protecting their families and neighbors. As good stewards of the land, (they want to) preserve our environment for the future.”This year, the Weed Science Society of America (WSSA), the American Phytopathological Society (APS) and the Entomological Society of America (ESA) have joined forces to highlight pesticide safety education programs and to teach pesticide safety to the public during the collaboration’s inaugural National Pesticide Safety Education Month.UGA Extension’s PSEP promotes the safe, responsible use of pesticides by individuals and commercial groups by providing training programs, materials and educational resources covering pest identification, personal safety, safe storage and disposal of pesticides, environmental protection, pesticide drift and runoff prevention, threatened and endangered species protection, water quality protection, and food safety.“Georgia’s PSEP offers online training modules covering core pesticide safety topics for agricultural producers seeking private applicator licenses, and core and some category study guides for commercial applicators of pesticides,” Taylor said. “In addition, recertification classes are offered in requesting counties around Georgia, as well as regional training classes that offer re-certification credit hours.”PSEP also offers an online training course, the Georgia Competent Applications of Pesticides Program, that teaches basic pesticide safety to homeowners, public service employees and public volunteers, like Master Gardener Extension Volunteers, according to Taylor.“This allows anyone in Georgia who might want to learn about the proper and safe use of pesticides to do so from the comfort of their own living room,” Taylor said.Taylor is the editor of UGA Extension’s “Georgia Pest Management Handbook,” which is revised and published annually. Copies of the handbook are provided to all UGA Extension Agriculture and Natural Resources agents and are sold to crop advisers, chemical distribution companies and to the general public throughout the Southeast.More information about UGA Extension’s pesticide safety resources can be found at www.extension.uga.edu/programs-services/pesticide-safety-education.last_img read more

Farm Gate Values

first_imgDetermining the value of Georgia’s agricultural commodities is on University of Georgia agricultural economist Kent Wolfe’s list of job responsibilities. He does it every year, but it’s not a one-man job.Director of the UGA Center for Agribusiness and Development (CAED), Wolfe gets a lot of help from UGA Cooperative Extension county agents across the state.“We use a survey tool that we give to every county agent,” explained Wolfe. “We want farmers to populate the survey with what crops they grow, the acreage for those crops and the price the farmer is receiving at the time of sale.Unlike UGA, Wolfe says that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) National Agricultural Statistics Service uses the market year price for the whole year to determine farm gate values.“We look at the crop price at the time of harvest, not the market year average price,” he said. “We have more than 1,100 variables that are used to collect information on 80 commodities. Our farm gate dataset is much more extensive than the data that is available from USDA, which covers about 34 commodities.”UGA’s farm gate value report figures can vary from those provided by the USDA because they are calculated using the harvest time price, and UGA allows county Extension agents to make acreage and yield adjustments based on their knowledge of the county.“We have actual boots-on-the-ground people who have the authority to make adjustments. (The Extension agents) know their counties,” Wolfe said. “Collecting this data is also a great task for new agents, as it allows them to interact with producers and establish relationships while they are collecting county-specific data. ”For example, the Extension agent may know his county’s farmers are getting a higher price for crops.“The Extension agents know what is going on in their county. It’s where they live,” Wolfe said. “They interact daily with their farmers and this allows them to get a good feel for what is happening in their counties. They visit farmers and see them in meetings every day.”Karen Stubbs, a research professional with CAED, is responsible for collecting and compiling the data that goes into the UGA-generated Georgia farm gate value report. She collects prices from UGA specialists and acreage and yield data from the USDA. Stubbs and the Extension agents use this data as a baseline.When the farm gate values for the state are complete, individual county agents can go into the system and generate specialized farm gate reports for their specific counties, Wolfe said.In Toombs County, Agriculture and Natural Resources Agent Jason Edenfield uses Georgia farm gate value information when he speaks to groups like local civic clubs, the chamber of commerce or the development authority. He has a presentation prepared that focuses on the economic benefit and importance of food and fiber based on Toombs County’s agriculture production.He also hands out copies of “Ag Snapshots,” a pocket-sized book created by CAED that summarizes Georgia’s farm gate values.The UGA farm gate information is merged with the university’s Early Detection and Distribution Mapping System (EDDMapS) Integrated Pest Management (IPM) program, an online, database-driven system that collects information from crop advisors, county agents and Extension specialists to provide a clear picture of current pest and disease activity.With the information Extension agents provide for the annual farm gate survey, EDDMapS IPM is better able to target pest and disease information about specific crop issues based on the crops grown in specific counties, said Joe LaForest, associate director of the UGA Center for Invasive Species and Ecosystem Health system, also known as the Bugwood network, and leader of the Integrated Pest Management (IPM) and Forest Health programs.Since farm gate reports are based on the past, the completed farm gate data is generally released a year after the crop year. CAED has completed the 2017 farm gate values; data collection for the 2018 crop year will be completed by the end of summer.“This information is shared with the Georgia House of Representatives and the Senate Agriculture Committee, the Governor’s Office and our federal senators and legislators,” Wolfe said. “And, of course, agricultural groups across the state and the general public find it valuable, too.”The 2017 total farm gate value for Georgia agricultural commodities is $13.7 billion. In 2017, the top five Georgia commodities in order of value were broilers, cotton, eggs, peanuts and timber.To access the most current Georgia farm gate values, visit the CAED website at www.caes.uga.edu/content/caes-subsite/caed/publications/farm-gate.The EDDMapS system can be viewed at www.eddmaps.org.last_img read more

Vermonter participates in ISO corporate responsibility conference in Brazil

first_imgBURLINGTON, Vt.–Carolyn Schmidt of Whiting is participating this month in an international conference on corporate responsibility which will take her to Salvador, Brazil. Schmidt is a member of the staff and board of directors of ECOLOGIA, a nonprofit environmental organization based in Middlebury, and an adjunct professor at Champlain College in Burlington.From March 7-11, she will meet with representatives from around the globe to create the first draft of a social responsibility standard for the ISO (International Organization of Standards).The task is to set a framework for the 21st century for how well treat people and the environment, Schmidt said. Whatever the ISO does, it will probably become the global standard.The conference will address two main categories: social responsibility of business, including the treatment of workers around the world, and environmental responsibility, including pollution and sustainable development.The ISO is accepting the concept that corporations are supported by and dependent on people and the environment, Schmidt said. Its a big step forward. I think its an exciting process to be a part of.Schmidt is the board secretary for ECOLOGIA as well as the US project manager for the organizations Virtual Foundation and project director for International Exchange Programs. She is also a member of Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility, which she describes as a tremendous resource for information.A former high school social studies teacher, Schmidt now teaches sociology and interpersonal communication courses at Champlain College. She anticipates that this international experience will provide additional real-world examples to share with her students. Sociology teaches you a different conceptual framework for assessing a situation–its a way of thinking flexibly, she said. She added that strong communications skills will be important at the conference, where she expects to employ the Vermont approach to finding a common ground. ISO is a consensus-based process, she explained.Drafting the corporate responsibility standard for ISO is expected to take three years. Teams from Sweden and Brazil are taking the lead in the project and significant efforts have been made to involve developing countries, which are home to 80 percent of the worlds population, Schmidt said.# # #last_img read more

Does Your Organization Need More Innovative Thinkers?

first_imgFor Immediate ReleaseContact: Bruce Seifer, Assistant Director for Economic Development, 865-7179Does Your Organization Need More Innovative Thinkers?Burlingtons Community and Economic Development Office is sponsoring a free workshop hosted by Forward Leap Consulting.Five Ways to Unleash the Creative Potential Within Your OrganizationWhen: Friday, November 9, 20077:30AM-9:30AMWhere: City Hall, conference room 12Coffee and refreshments servedThis interactive workshop will allow participants to discuss and generate solutions to innovative issues. A recent survey found 89% of responding employees felt that innovation was among their top five work priorities, 44% of those same respondents gave their organizations a low rating in how well the innovation process was understood.In this workshop you will learn:-The difference between innovation and creativity-Easy-to-implement ideas that will ignite creativity within your organization-Teamwork skills vital for collaborative innovationThis interactive workshop will also allow participants to discuss and generate solutions to innovation issues. Be prepared to use your creativity and take some great ideas back to your workplace.Register today at (802) 324-8326 or by e-mail at leslie@forwardleapconsulting.com(link sends e-mail) “I’m pleased that the City’s CEDO department and Forward Leap Consulting is helping to support businesses and other organizations with this workshop,” said Burlington Mayor Bob Kiss. “In a competitive business environment, innovation and creativity are essential. We need to encourage new ideas wherever we can find them.”CEDO offers comprehensive business assistance through partner workshops and other programs such as energy efficiency, Renewal Community tax credits, commercial space finder, business planning, technical assistance and our business loan program. Call CEDO today for more information or to set up an appointment to start your business.last_img read more

National Life CEO MacLeay Announces Retirement

first_imgNational Life Group CEO Announces RetirementMontpelier, Vermont (June 10, 2008) – Thomas H. MacLeay announced today that he will retire by year’s end as President and Chief Executive Officer of National Life Group(r). MacLeay will remain as Chairman of the Board of the financial services company.”National Life is strong,” said MacLeay, 58. “This is an excellent time to make the transition to new leadership.”MacLeay, a Vermont native who has worked at National Life for 32 years, has served as President of the company for a total of 11 years and CEO and Chairman for the past six years.”I have accomplished what I set out to do six years ago, which was to strengthen the company’s financial foundation, diversify and grow its businesses, and build an executive team superbly qualified to continue to move the organization forward,” said MacLeay.National Life Group(r), a Fortune 1000 company, serves more than 700,000 customers. With 2007 revenue of $1.4 billion and net income of $109 million, the companies of National Life Group(r) have roughly 900 employees, with most located at the Group’s home office in Montpelier, Vermont. Group companies also maintain offices in Dallas, New York, San Francisco, Boston and Philadelphia.National Life Group(r) (NLGroup) includes its flagship company, National Life Insurance Company, founded in Montpelier in 1848. Also in NLGroup are Life Insurance Company of the Southwest in Dallas, Texas, and Sentinel Investments, Equity Services, Inc. and National Retirement Plan Advisors, all located in Montpelier.David Coates, lead independent director on the National Life Group(r) Board of Directors, said MacLeay has revitalized the company. “The right person in the right place at the right time can change everything – and for National Life, Tom MacLeay has been that person.””When the Board named Tom as CEO, I said no one was better suited, better prepared or better able to fill the leadership post. Time has proven me right. By every measure National Life is stronger and more vibrant today than it was before Tom took over,” said Coates.During MacLeay’s tenure as chief executive officer, National Life Group(r) has experienced exceptional growth by every possible measure. NLGroup’s assets under management jumped from $13 billion in 2002 to $20 billion this year; net income has broken the $100 million mark each of the last two years, and statutory capitalization has been growing at an annual rate of 15 percent since 2002.”Most importantly, Tom has worked to grow and diversify the businesses so that today the company has an excellent and healthy balance of business, with about a third of its assets under management from life insurance, a third from annuities and roughly 25 percent from Sentinel Investments, our asset management company,” said Coates.MacLeay also has been responsible for enhancing National Life Group’s(r) commitment to the environment and its reputation as a socially responsible corporate citizen. Under his leadership the company formed a major charitable foundation and embarked upon an ambitious, multi-faceted project to turn its Montpelier headquarters into a green campus. MacLeay just announced the company will soon begin installing on its roof the largest solar electricity project in the state. National Life Group(r) is on schedule to win coveted LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification this year for its Montpelier headquarters.Coates said he and the other members of the Board are pleased MacLeay will remain as Chairman of the Board, “and that we will still have the benefit of his leadership and vision.”According to Coates, the Board has been focused on leadership development and succession planning for some time in anticipation of MacLeay’s retirement. The Board has already begun a process to select a successor.MacLeay joined National Life in 1976 as a security analyst, rapidly advancing through the management ranks and serving in pivotal positions at critical times in the company’s growth and expansion. He became President and Chief Operating Officer in 1996; in 2002 he was named Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board.MacLeay said he is looking forward to continuing a role with the company as Chairman of the Board, and is also eager to have time for other endeavors. “Charlotte and I are looking forward to spending more time with our children and grandchildren and hope to do some extended travel,” he said. “We are both active with several organizations, have deep roots in the local community and have no plans to change our primary residence.”MacLeay is Chairman of the Board of Sentinel Group Funds, Inc., and currently serves on the Board of Directors of Chittenden Trust Company and the Central Vermont Economic Development Corporation. He is a Trustee and Chairman of the Finance Committee of the Air Force Aid Society.The MacLeays live in Montpelier. They have two grown children, David MacLeay and Kate MacLeay Crespo, and two grandchildren.###About National Life Group(r)National Life Group(r) is a diversified family of financial service companies that has successfully forged a strong identity as a product innovator. Companies in the group offer a comprehensive portfolio of life insurance, annuity and investment products to help individuals, families and businesses pursue their financial goals.National Life, a Fortune 1000 company, serves more than 700,000 customers. With 2007 revenue of $1.4 billion and net income of $109 million, members of National Life Group(r) employ roughly 900 employees, with most located at its home office in Montpelier, VT. Group companies also maintain offices in Dallas, New York, San Francisco, Boston and Philadelphia.The Group is made up of its flagship company, National Life Insurance Company, founded in Montpelier, Vermont in 1848; Life Insurance Company of the Southwest, Dallas, Texas, and Sentinel Investments, Equity Services, Inc. and National Retirement Plan Advisors, all located in Montpelier.National Life Group(r) is a trade name of National Life Insurance Company and its affiliates. National Life Insurance Company’s variable insurance products are distributed by Equity Services, Inc., Member FINRA and SIPC. Sentinel Funds are distributed by Sentinel Financial Services Company, Member FINRA/SIPC. Life Insurance Company of the Southwest offers fixed insurance products in all states except New York. All companies referenced are affiliates of National Life Group(r). Each company of the National Life Group(r) is solely responsible for its own financial condition and contractual obligations.last_img read more

Chittenden Bank parent People’s United Financial Reports Third Quarter Earnings

first_imgPeople’s United Financial Reports Third Quarter Earnings of $46 Million or $0.14 Per Share.greyBox { padding:20px 0px 20px 20px; background-color:#cfcfcf;}.boxText { font-size:11px; font-weight:bold;}.boxTextHeading { font-size:13px; font-weight:bold;}#auto { display:block;}#banking { display:none;}#energy { display:none;}#entertainment { display:none;}#government { display:none;}#health { display:none;}#heavyindustry { display:none;}#investors { display:none;}#international { display:none;}#multicultural { display:none;}#retail { display:none;}#sports { display:none;}#technology { display:none;}#technology { display:none;}#travel { display:none;}#trade { display:none;}#businessservices { display:none;}#publicissues { display:none;}#prndirect { display:none;}#prtoolkit { display:none;} .bottomBlueBox { border-bottom: solid 1px #B7C5DD; background-color: #f3f6fa;}.topBlueBox { border-top: solid 1px #B7C5DD; background-color: #f3f6fa;}.leftBlueBox { border-left: solid 1px #B7C5DD; background-color: #f3f6fa;}.rightBlueBox { border-right: solid 1px #B7C5DD; background-color: #f3f6fa;}.bottomBlueBox { border-bottom: solid 1px #B7C5DD; background-color: #f3f6fa;}.blueText { font-size:10px; color:#336699;}–>// Get the year for the footervar today = new Date();var thisYear = today.getFullYear();function getLinkName(iconName) { return iconName + ‘- ‘ + document.getElementById(‘headline’).innerHTML;}var images_on = new Array();images_on[0] = new Image(41,21);images_on[0].src = “/news/images/menu/1home_on.gif”;images_on[1] = new Image(81,21);images_on[1].src = “/news/images/menu/1uplo_on.gif”;images_on[2] = new Image(81,21);images_on[2].src = “/news/images/menu/1toda_on.gif”;images_on[3] = new Image(67,21);images_on[3].src = “/news/images/menu/1mult_on.gif”;images_on[4] = new Image(106,21);images_on[4].src = “/news/images/menu/1indu_on.gif”;images_on[5] = new Image(77,21);images_on[5].src = “/news/images/menu/1inte_on.gif”;images_on[6] = new Image(78,21);images_on[6].src = “/news/images/menu/1ours_on.gif”;images_on[7] = new Image(83,21);images_on[7].src = “/news/images/menu/1inve_on.gif”;images_on[8] = new Image(60,21);images_on[8].src = “/news/images/menu/1abou_on.gif”;images_on[9] = new Image(67,21);images_on[9].src = “/news/images/menu/1cont_on.gif”;images_on[10] = new Image(77,13);images_on[10].src = “../images/2aind_on.gif”;images_on[11] = new Image(34,21);images_on[11].src = “/news/images/menu/1rssf_on.gif”;var images_off = new Array();images_off[0] = new Image(41,21);images_off[0].src = “/news/images/menu/1home_off.gif”;images_off[1] = new Image(81,21);images_off[1].src = “/news/images/menu/1uplo_off.gif”;images_off[2] = new Image(81,21);images_off[2].src = “/news/images/menu/1toda_off.gif”;images_off[3] = new Image(67,21);images_off[3].src = “/news/images/menu/1mult_off.gif”;images_off[4] = new Image(106,21);images_off[4].src = “/news/images/menu/1indu_off.gif”;images_off[5] = new Image(77,21);images_off[5].src = “/news/images/menu/1inte_off.gif”;images_off[6] = new Image(78,21);images_off[6].src = “/news/images/menu/1ours_off.gif”;images_off[7] = new Image(83,21);images_off[7].src = “/news/images/menu/1inve_off.gif”;images_off[8] = new Image(60,21);images_off[8].src = “/news/images/menu/1abou_off.gif”;images_off[9] = new Image(67,21);images_off[9].src = “/news/images/menu/1cont_off.gif”;images_off[10] = new Image(77,13);images_off[10].src = “../images/2aind_off.gif”;images_off[11] = new Image(34,21);images_off[11].src = “/news/images/menu/1rssf_off.gif”;function imgOff(id, idx){ var getimage = document.getElementById(id); getimage.src = images_off[idx].src;}function imgOn(id, idx){ var getimage = document.getElementById(id); getimage.src = images_on[idx].src;} var currentView = “auto”; function showRow(row) { hideRow(currentView); var theRow = document.getElementById(row); theRow.style.display = “block”; currentView = row; } function hideRow(row) { var theRow = document.getElementById(row); theRow.style.display = “none”; } function disp(feedId) { divFeed = document.getElementById(feedId); if(divFeed) { if(divFeed.style.display == ‘none’) { divFeed.style.display = ‘inline’; } else { divFeed.style.display = ‘none’; } } if(feedId==’n1′) { document.getElementById(‘n2’).style.display = ‘none’; } else { document.getElementById(‘n1’).style.display = ‘none’; } }       People’s United Financial Reports Third Quarter Earnings of $46 Million or $0.14 Per Share Quarter Characterized by Strong Capital Position and Solid AssetQuality BRIDGEPORT, Conn., Oct. 16 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ — People’s UnitedFinancial, Inc. (Nasdaq: PBCT) has announced net income of $46.0 million,or $0.14 per share, for the third quarter of 2008, compared to $43.0million, or $0.13 per share, for the second quarter of 2008 and $57.6million, or $0.20 per share, for the third quarter of 2007. Earnings forthe second and third quarters of 2008 reflect continued low levels of netloan charge-offs and further benefit from previously announcedcost-reduction initiatives. People’s United Financial completed its acquisition of ChittendenCorporation on January 1, 2008. Accordingly, People’s United Financial’sthird quarter 2007 results do not include the results of ChittendenCorporation and are not directly comparable to the current quarter’searnings. For the third quarter of 2008, return on average tangible assets was0.99 percent and return on average tangible stockholders’ equity was 5.0percent, compared to 0.91 percent and 4.7 percent, respectively, for thesecond quarter of 2008. The Board of Directors of People’s United Financial declared a $0.15per share quarterly dividend, payable November 15, 2008 to shareholders ofrecord on November 1, 2008. Based on the closing stock price on October 15,2008, the dividend yield on People’s United Financial common stock is 3.9percent. President and Chief Executive Officer, Philip R. Sherringham stated,”Our strength and stability have clearly differentiated our bank in thewake of the current economic and financial sector turmoil. Our performancethis quarter continues to be a reflection of our fortress balance sheet andcontinued strong asset quality, and was further bolstered by an improvementin the net interest margin.” Sherringham added, “We continue to generate healthy loan growth acrossour core lending businesses. Our average commercial banking and home equityloan portfolios increased $146 million, or 6 percent annualized, from thesecond quarter of 2008.” Sherringham concluded, “We remain firmly committed to our goal ofenhancing our premier regional banking franchise. While our strategic focusremains on growth through acquisitions, we continue to invest in ourcommercial, retail banking and wealth management businesses throughout NewEngland. Our balance sheet continues to be funded almost entirely bydeposits and stockholders’ equity. Given the many challenges of today’senvironment, the strength of our capital and liquidity positions, assetquality and earnings set us apart from most in the industry.” “Key drivers of the company’s performance this quarter were an increasein the net interest margin, expense control and ongoing strong assetquality,” said Paul D. Burner, Senior Executive Vice President and ChiefFinancial Officer. “The 15 basis point improvement in the net interestmargin from the second quarter of 2008 reflects the benefits fromdisciplined loan and deposit pricing. Non-interest expense decreasedslightly from the second quarter of 2008, primarily reflecting thecontinued benefit from cost-savings initiatives announced earlier thisyear.” At September 30, 2008, non-performing assets totaled $91.4 million, a$5.0 million increase from June 30, 2008. Non-performing assets equaled0.64 percent of total loans, REO and repossessed assets, compared to 0.60percent at June 30, 2008. The allowance for loan losses as a percentage oftotal loans increased to 1.08 percent at September 30, 2008 compared to1.06 percent at June 30, 2008. Third quarter net loan charge-offs totaled $4.0 million compared to$2.4 million in the second quarter of 2008. Net loan charge-offs as apercent of average loans on an annualized basis were 0.11 percent in thethird quarter of 2008 compared to 0.07 percent in this year’s secondquarter. The provision for loan losses this quarter reflects a $2.8 millionincrease in the allowance for loan losses to $154.5 million at September30, 2008. Commenting on asset quality, Burner stated, “While we expect the levelof non-performing assets to fluctuate in response to changing economic andmarket conditions, we remain comfortable with the current levels and do notsee any pervasive weakness in any sector of the loan portfolio. The ratioof non-performing loans to total loans was stable at 0.59 percent atSeptember 30, 2008 and net loan charge-offs remain extremely low. We feelthat the loan portfolio continues to benefit from our stringentunderwriting standards.” Conference Call On October 17, 2008, at 11 a.m., Eastern Time, People’s UnitedFinancial will host a conference call to discuss this earningsannouncement. The call may be heard through http://www.peoples.com(link is external) by selecting”Investor Relations” in the “About People’s” section on the home page, andthen selecting “Conference Calls” in the “News and Events” section.Additional materials relating to the call may also be accessed at People’sUnited Bank’s web site. The call will be archived on the web site andavailable for approximately 90 days. Fourth Quarter Earnings Release People’s United Financial expects to release its fourth quarter andfull year 2008 earnings on January 22, 2009. Selected Financial Terms In addition to evaluating People’s United Financial’s results ofoperations in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles(“GAAP”), management routinely supplements this evaluation with an analysisof certain non-GAAP financial measures, such as the efficiency ratio.Management believes this non-GAAP financial measure provides informationuseful to investors in understanding People’s United Financial’s underlyingoperating performance and trends, and facilitates comparisons with theperformance of other banks and thrifts. The efficiency ratio, which represents an approximate measure of thecost required by People’s United Financial to generate a dollar of revenue,is the ratio of total non-interest expense (excluding goodwill impairmentcharges, amortization of acquisition-related intangibles and fair valueadjustments, losses on real estate assets and nonrecurring expenses) to netinterest income on a fully taxable equivalent basis (excluding fair valueadjustments) plus total non-interest income (including the fully taxableequivalent adjustment on bank-owned life insurance income, and excludinggains and losses on sales of assets, other than residential mortgage loans,and nonrecurring income). People’s United Financial generally considers anitem of income or expense to be nonrecurring if it is not similar to anitem of income or expense of a type incurred within the last two years andis not similar to an item of income or expense of a type reasonablyexpected to be incurred within the following two years. Managementconsiders the efficiency ratio to be more representative of People’s UnitedFinancial’s ongoing operating efficiency, as the excluded items aregenerally related to external market conditions and non-routinetransactions. 3Q 2008 Financial Highlights Summary — Net income totaled $46.0 million, or $0.14 per share. — Net interest income on a fully taxable equivalent basis totaled $160.8 million. — Net interest margin increased 15 basis points from 2Q08 to 3.71%. — Provision for loan losses totaled $6.8 million. — Net loan charge-offs totaled $4.0 million in 3Q08 compared to $2.4 million in 2Q08. — The allowance for loan losses was increased by $2.8 million in 3Q08 from 2Q08 levels. — Non-interest income totaled $74.2 million, a 1% increase from 2Q08. — Non-interest expense totaled $158.7 million, a $4.2 million, or 3%, decrease from 2Q08. — Effective income tax rate was 32.9%. Commercial Banking — Average commercial banking loans increased $73 million from 2Q08 to $8.9 billion. — Commercial banking non-performing assets totaled $64.3 million. — The ratio of commercial banking non-performing loans to total commercial banking loans was 0.68% at September 30, 2008. — Net loan charge-offs totaled $2.5 million, or 0.11% annualized, of average commercial banking loans. Retail & Small Business Banking — Average residential mortgage loans totaled $3.4 billion. — Average home equity loans increased $73 million from 2Q08 to $1.8 billion. — Average indirect auto loans averaged $0.2 billion. — Home equity net loan charge-offs totaled $0.2 million, or 0.03% annualized, of average home equity loans. — Indirect auto net loan charge-offs totaled $0.8 million, or 1.41% annualized, of average indirect auto loans. Wealth Management — Insurance revenue increased 9% from 2Q08, primarily reflecting seasonal renewals. — Assets under management totaled $10 billion. People’s United Financial, a diversified financial services companywith $20 billion in assets, provides consumer and commercial bankingservices through a network of more than 300 branches in Connecticut,Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Maine and New York. Through itssubsidiaries, People’s United Financial provides equipment financing, assetmanagement, brokerage and financial advisory services, and insuranceservices. Certain statements contained in this release are forward-looking innature. These include all statements about People’s United Financial’splans, objectives, expectations and other statements that are nothistorical facts, and usually use words such as “expect,” “anticipate,””believe” and similar expressions. Such statements represent management’scurrent beliefs, based upon information available at the time thestatements are made, with regard to the matters addressed. Allforward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties thatcould cause People’s United Financial’s actual results or financialcondition to differ materially from those expressed in or implied by suchstatements. Factors of particular importance to People’s United Financialinclude, but are not limited to: (1) changes in general, national orregional economic conditions; (2) changes in interest rates; (3) changes inloan default and charge-off rates; (4) changes in deposit levels; (5)changes in levels of income and expense in non-interest income and expense –>last_img read more

Rising Role of Renewables and Gas Setting the Pace for Rapid Change in Global Energy Markets

first_imgRising Role of Renewables and Gas Setting the Pace for Rapid Change in Global Energy Markets FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享New York Times:LONDON — From the rise of renewable power to the transformation of the United States into a heavyweight producer of oil and gas, the global energy market, normally slow to evolve, is going through major upheaval.That is the assessment of Fatih Birol, the executive director of the International Energy Agency, the organization based in Paris that is publishing its annual World Energy Outlook on Tuesday.The report does not make for easy bedtime reading: It is 763 pages long and stuffed with data-laden charts and tables.Still, the document tries to project current trends as far out as 2040, and sees an industry at the nexus of various powerful trends.The United States, for instance, has shifted from being an energy-dependent importer to a new role as one of the world’s biggest producers of oil and gas, the report says. But concerns about greenhouse-gas emissions have clouded the future of fossil fuels. That has encouraged the development of alternatives like solar and wind power, which increasingly compete with traditional energy sources.Here are some of the most important themes to be found in the report.‘Energy Renaissance’Energy production in the United States will continue to shake up the global oil and natural gas markets, and benefit the country’s economy.By the 2030s, largely because of production from shale-rock formations, the United States is expected to produce more than 30 million barrels of oil and gas a day, the report says. That is 50 percent more than any other country has ever produced in a single year.That is a sharp shift from the country’s position just a decade ago, when it was a major importer of oil.The shale industry has gone through a “trial by fire” in recent years, the report says, referring to a sharp falloff in the price of oil from more than $100 a barrel to as low as around $30 a barrel. It is now above $60 a barrel.That has transformed the shale sector, and it is “leaner and hungrier” than it was before the price crash, the report says. As a result, it is better able to quickly react to any sign of higher prices. That is crucial, as the OPEC oil cartel tries to manage its production levels to bolster prices.The Coming Gas Shake-UpChanges in how gas is transported and traded are having a major effect, on the energy industry and the environment.As the United States increases its gas production — it is now on track to surpass traditional giants like Qatar and Russia and become the world’s largest exporter of liquefied natural gas, or L.N.G. — it is also exporting what the report calls a disruptive “mind-set about how gas markets should operate.”Gas has historically been sold through long-term contracts pegged to oil prices. That has particularly been the case in Asia, the key market for L.N.G., which is expected to eventually dominate the international gas trade.But as the United States becomes a bigger force in gas markets, it is also helping to break down the existing system. Over time, the report forecasts that gas will be traded more widely and freely, potentially pushing down prices and making it more attractive to developing countries like India and China.Greater use of gas could bring major environmental benefits. When burned, it produces less of the carbon emissions associated with climate change than coal, and lower levels of other pollutants. Mr. Birol said, for instance, said that the decision by power plants in United States to switch from burning coal to gas was largely responsible for holding global emissions roughly steady in recent years (although they appear poised to rise this year).There is still work to be done, the report says. The gas industry needs to address emissions of methane that undermine that type of fuel’s environmental claims. “Natural gas is a viable exit ramp off of fossil fuels only if it cleans up its methane pollution, which now seriously undercuts its claimed climate advantages,” said Fred Krupp, president of the Environmental Defense Fund, an American environmental group.Gains for RenewablesOne factor that may hamper the growth of gas: rapidly falling costs of renewable sources of energy like wind and solar installations.The average cost of electricity generated over the life of a solar power plant declined by a stunning 70 percent from 2010 to 2016, according to the agency’s report. Wind costs declined by 25 percent in that period.The report forecasts that these technologies will only become less expensive over the next 25 years, squeezing fossil fuels, which are widely used to generate electric power.Already, power from new wind installations in India and China is cheaper than new gas-fired power plants. A similar situation is developing with solar power, the report says.Still, fossil fuels will not vanish anytime soon. It is much more difficult to reduce the use of coal, gas and oil in sectors like transportation and industry than it is in power generation, and the share of fossil fuels used to meet overall energy demand will be 75 percent in 2040, compared with 81 percent last year, according to the agency’s main scenario.And, the report adds, greenhouse gas levels still appear to be climbing above the threshold required to meet international goals like those established in the 2015 Paris climate accords.China’s Outsize RoleBecause of China’s scale as a consumer of energy, the choices that the country makes will be felt globally, the report says.China could overtake the United States as the world’s largest consumer of oil as soon as 2030. Of all the new solar and wind power installations to be added through 2040, a third could be in China. In that period, the country could also end up with 320 million electric vehicles, more than a third of the global total.“China’s choices,” the report says, “will play a huge role in determining global trends, and could spark a faster clean energy transition.”More: “America’s ‘Renaissance’ to Gains for Renewables: Global Energy Trends”last_img read more

Insurance company Mapfre to stop underwriting new coal mines and power plants

first_imgInsurance company Mapfre to stop underwriting new coal mines and power plants FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享S&P Global Market Intelligence ($):Global insurance group Mapfre SA will no longer underwrite construction of coal mines and coal-fired power plants or invest in electric utilities that derive at least 30% of their revenue from coal-produced energy, the company announced during its annual general meeting March 8.One-third of the global reinsurance market has restricted cover for coal projects, according to a December 2018 report from the U.S.-focused arm of the international Unfriend Coal campaign, which has been pushing European insurers away from coal and other fossil fuels.Lucie Pinson, European coordinator for Unfriend Coal, in a news release called the announcement “woefully short of the action necessary to completely phase out coal in Europe by 2030” because it did not mention plans for restricting coal infrastructures, divesting shareholdings or applying the policy to its reinsurance business.Mapfre companies in Spain and Portugal are expected to be carbon-neutral by 2021, when carbon emissions from the insurance company will be reduced by 61%, a Mapfre release said.Mapfre joins Vienna Insurance Group AG, Generali, Munich Re Co., Swiss Reinsurance Co. Ltd., Allianz SE, Zurich Insurance Group AG, Scor SE and Axa in backing away from coal investing.More ($): Global insurer Mapfre to stop underwriting new coal projectslast_img read more

2008 Best of the Outdoors : Running

first_img BEST RUNNING CLUBAtlanta Track ClubThe Atlanta Track Club guides dozens of smaller running clubs and is responsible for the largest road race in the country, the Peachtree Road Race 10K.“The enjoyment of a healthy lifestyle through running drives all that we do. Our signature event is the Peachtree Road Race, with a capped field of 55,000. The running community in Atlanta is very strong and continuing to expand. Our climate makes it easier for the casual and seasoned runner to train year round, especially through the winter months.”—Tracey Russell, executive director of the Atlanta Track Club NEXT BEST2. D.C. Road Runners3. West Virginia Mountain Trail Runners4. Hash House Harriers5. Richmond Road Runners6. Star City Striders7. Mangum Track Club8. Charlottesville Track Club9. Trail Heads – Chapel Hill10. Asheville Track ClubGREENEST RACENew River 50KFries, Va.The inaugural New River 50K, running the length of the New River State Park in Virginia, is one of the first running events to actively curb their waste and resource impact.“We are striving to have 75% of the products, food, and awards, to come from within 100 miles of the race, or to come from companies with demonstrated records of “kind earth” practices. All registration is online to minimize paper use.  We are encouraging the use of personal water bottles; disposable products will be used only when necessary; and everything possible will be recycled. Runners are encouraged to bring their own bowls and silverware to use at post race lunch. All proceeds will go to The National Committee for the New River, and we’re collecting Clif Bar and Balance Bar wrappers for the Terracycle Initiative. Being “green” is a flexible term, yet it almost always involves using the resources of the local community.”—Annette Bednosky, race director for the New River 50KBEST RUNNING TRAILArt Loeb TrailThe Art Loeb Trail is a 30-mile footpath traversing Pisgah National Forest from the Davidson River to the high elevations of Shining Rock Wilderness.“Art Loeb has over 9,000 feet in climbing in just under 30 miles. The panoramic vistas at 6,000 feet as the trail approaches the Shining Rock Wilderness are some of the best views in all of the Appalachians. There are plenty of great photo ops while running over Black Balsam and Tennant Mountains. What makes the Art Loeb so special is the wonderland of ancient granite plutons, high-altitude forests and expansive southern balds it traverses. Hardly any adventurer could turn down the lure of a singletrack trail destined for these unforgettable places.”—Matt Kirk, ultrarunnerNEXT BEST2. Three Ridges/The Priest, Lynchburg, Va.3. Moses Cone Trails, Blowing Rock, N.C.4. DuPont State Forest Trails, Brevard, N.C.5. Mountains to Sea Trail, N.C.6. Davidson River Trail, N.C.7. Massanutten Mountain Trail, Va.8. Kennesaw Mountain Trails, Ga.9. Foothills Trail, S.C.10. North Fork Mountain Trail, W.Va.BEST ROAD RACECrazy 8s 8KKingsport, Tenn.One of the fastest and exciting races in the region, Crazy 8s attracts the best professional runners from around the world. It’s a late-night summer race with candle-lit streets and a thrilling stadium finish. NEXT BEST2. Cooper River Bridge 10K, Charleston, S.C.3. Peachtree Road Race 10K, Atlanta, Ga.4. Ukrops Monument Avenue 10K, Richmond, Va.4. Cherry Blossom 10-Miler, Washington, D.C.5. Charlottsville 10-Miler, Charlottesville, Va.6. Charlotte Southpark Turkey Trot 8K, Charlotte, N.C.7. Ogden Newspapers Classic 20K, Wheeling, W.Va.8. Shamrock Sports Fest 8K, Virginia Beach, Va.9. Army 10-Miler, Washington, D.C.10. Tennessee Expo 10K, Knoxville, Tenn.BEST RAIL-TRAILSC&O TowpathWashington, D.C.The Chesapeake and Ohio Canal Towpath follows the Potomac River for 185 miles from Washington, D.C. to Cumberland, Md.“On the C&O I can run to places I’ve read about in history books. When I want company, I run the Georgetown to Great Falls section (miles 0 to 15). For a bit of isolation, the section from Great Falls to Whites Ferry (mile 35) is great. The surface of the towpath is mostly clay and crushed stone—great for a nice 185 mile run.”—James Moore, 64-year old ultrarunner NEXT BEST2. Virginia Creeper Trail, Abingdon, Va.3. Greenbrier River Trail, W.Va.4. Silver Comet Trail, Marietta, Ga.5. W&OD Trail, Arlington, Va.6. New River Trail, Galax, Va.7. New River Gorge National Trail, Fayetteville, W.Va.8. Caperton/Mon River/Deckers Creek Trail, Morgantown, W.Va.9. Huckleberry Trail, Blacksburg, Va.10. Allegheny Highlands Trail, Elkins, W.Va.BEST TRAIL RACEShut-In Ridge Trail RunThe classic Southeastern trail run, Shut-In features 17.8 miles of technical singletrack that climbs 3,000 feet on its way to Mount Pisgah.“Shut-In is one of the toughest trail races in the Southeast. People love it because it’s a test of endurance, agility, and strength. Just completing the Shut-In course is an accomplishment in itself. The race takes place just after the peak of the fall season and offers runners a technically challenging course, while providing great views of fall foliage in the Western North Carolina Mountains.”—Jane Roane, distance running diva and Shut-In Ridge training coachNEXT BEST 2. Springmaid Splash 10K, Spruce Pine, N.C.3. Rock 2 Rock 10K Trail Run, Black Mountain, N.C.4. James River Scramble 10K, Richmond, Va.5. Big South Fork 17-Miler, Oneida, Tenn.6. New River Gorge-ous Trail Run, Minden, W.Va.7. Salem Lakes Trail Race, Greensboro, N.C.8. Mountain Top Half Marathon, Copper Hill, Tenn.9. Dirty Dog 15K, Charleston, W.Va.10. Blue Ridge Burn 10K, Charlottesville, Va.BEST ULTRABarkley Marathon100 miles, 100,000 feet of elevation gain and loss in Frozen Head State Park, Tenn., and only seven finishers since its inception in 1986. Ultra runners love the Barkley because it’s almost impossible to complete.“I have been running for 32 years (including over 230 marathons and ultramarathons), and the Barkley was easily the most rewarding running experience of all. It has everything that I love in a challenge: roller coaster trails, obstacles to jump over or crawl through, big rocks and high walls to jump off, lots of slick and deep mud, flesh-tearing briers, insanely steep climbs where one cries for mommy, and insanely steep descents where idiots risk breaking their fool necks. Runners spend a lot of time trying to figure out how to find all 11 books hidden along the trail.  Delivering the pages back to the race director at the end of each 20-mile loop is worth any discomfort we might suffer out there.”—Byron Backer, ultrarunner and 60-mile fun run finisherNEXT BEST2. Mountain Masochist 50-Miler, Va.3. Mount Mitchell 40-Mile Challenge, Black Mtn., N.C.4. Stump Jump 50K, Chattanooga, Tenn.5. Highlands Sky 40-Miler, Canaan Valley, W.Va.6. Iron Mountain 50-Miler, Damascus, Va.7. Massanutten Mountain 100-Miler, Massanutten, Va.8. Bull Run Run 50-Miler, Manassas, Va.9. Grindstone 100-Miler, Swoope, Va.10. Uwharrie 40-Mile Trail Run, Troy, N.C.BEST MARATHONRichmond MarathonScenic course, friendly volunteers, a downhill finish, and junk-food rest stops.“The course is challenging but fair, and let’s face it, how often do you get to race downhill to the finish line? The race is big enough so you won’t run alone, but small enough that you’re not slowed down by masses of runners. In times of increased entry fees, Richmond offers great value for your money, a quality t-shirt, and one of the best medals you’re likely to receive. And the fantastic crowd support and enthusiastic volunteers keep me motivated throughout the course.”—Steve Speirs, veteran marathoner NEXT BEST2. Baltimore Marathon, Md.3. DuPont Forest Trail Marathon, Brevard, N.C.4. Twisted Ankle Trail Marathon, Summerville, Ga.5. Rocket City Marathon, Huntsville, Ala.6. Hatfield McCoy Marathon, Goody, Ky.7. Outer Banks Marathon, N.C.8. Georgia Marathon, Atlanta, Ga.9. Knoxville Marathon, Tenn.10. Black Mountain Trail Marathon, N.C.BEST URBAN RUNNING TRAILKennesaw Mountain National Battlefield ParkJust north of Atlanta, Kennesaw Mountain boasts over 18 miles of trails that traverse the surprisingly steep grades of the mountain and its surrounding hills.“The park offers an oasis of green in the city. It has rolling hills with a mix of pine-hardwood forest and the grassy expanses of the battlefields. Other than around the park headquarters or the major historic sites, there is never a feeling of heavy use, and on weekdays you can run for miles without seeing anyone else. For those looking for some technical trail the section from Burnt Hickory Road to the top of Kennesaw Mountain meets this need.”—Richard Schick, ultrarunner, Marietta, Ga. NEXT BEST2. Rock Creek Park, D.C.3. Bull Run/Occoquan Trail, Manassas, Va.4. Crowders Mountain, Charlotte, N.C.5. Chattahoochee River NRA, Atlanta, Ga.6. Buttermilk Trail, Richmond, Va.7. Carvins Cove, Roanoke, Va.8. North Ridge Trail, Knoxville, Tenn.9. McAfee Knob/A.T., Roanoke, Va.10. Mullens Cove Trail, Chattanooga, Tenn.last_img read more

Trail Mix November 2012

first_img Powered by Flash MP3 Player Winter has come a little early to the mountains of the Mid-Atlantic.  As this November Trail Mix goes live, the higher elevations of the Blue Ridge Mountains are blanketed with an early – and heavy – snow.  Time to hit the slopes or strap on the snowshoes, get outside and head into the whiteness!Make sure you take this month’s fantastic Trail Mix with you!We kick off November with “Bilgewater Blues,” a funky blues jam from Jimmy Herring, one of the South’s living guitar legends.  Herring has played with Aquarium Rescue Unit, The Allman Brothers Band, Widespread Panic, Phil Lesh, and more, and has spent much of the latter part of 2012 supporting his second solo release, Subject To Change Without Notice.Trail Mix is also thrilled to present a track from Grammy winning artist Kathy Mattea.  Mattea, a West Virginia native, has become a leading voice in the struggle mountain top removal.  Her latest record on the Sugar Hill label, Calling Me Home, speaks to her deep Appalachian roots.True to form, Trail Mix is all over the musical map this month.  We have Australian singer/songwriter Paul Kelly, Irish folkie Luka Bloom, rockabilly queen Rosie Flores, and some great regional artists in Antique Firearms, The Mason Brothers, The Bloody Angle, The Last Bison, Aaron Burdett, and Bryan Elijah Smith & The Wild Hearts.We are also happy to have tracks from Ari Hest, Jim Byrnes, Forest Sun, The Coal Porters, The Trishas, and many more for you.  Make sure to give Trail Mix a spin this month.  Download or stream at home, work, or on your intelligent device of choice.  Spread the word.  Help us share the music these fantastic artists have so willingly shared with us.  And if you take a notion, grab a disc from one or two or these great bands or catch them live if they are coming through your neck of the woods.Download Trail Mix November 2012 here.Click here to open the player in a new window.Download more music from month’s past here! They never go out of style.No flash player!It looks like you don’t have flash player installed. Click here to go to Macromedia download page.last_img read more