TransAlta and Tidewater Midstream to sell Pioneer Pipeline to ATCO

first_img TansAlta to sell Pioneer Pipeline to ATCO Gas. (Credit: Pixabay/David Mark.) TransAlta and its partner Tidewater Midstream & Infrastructure have signed an agreement with ATCO Gas and Pipelines, a subsidiary of Canadian Utilities, to sell Pioneer Pipeline for C$255m ($192m).Pioneer Pipeline is a 131km natural gas pipeline that runs from the Drayton Valley area to the Wabamun area west of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. The throughput from the pipeline is about 130MMcf/d of natural gas.The agreement replaces TransAlta’s agreement to sell the pipeline to NOVA Gas Transmission. However, most of the agreement terms remain substantially the same.Canadian Utilities president and CEO Siegfried Kiefer said: “This transaction continues to illustrate ATCO’s commitment to understand and support our customers’ evolving needs and develop solutions that support the transition to a lower-emitting energy system.”Pioneer Pipeline will be integrated into NGTL’s and ATCO’s Alberta natural gas transmission systemsAfter the transaction is closed, Pioneer Pipeline will be integrated into NGTL’s and ATCO’s Alberta natural gas transmission systems, supplying reliable natural gas to TransAlta’s power generation stations at Sundance and Keephills.The gas supply agreement will help to facilitate in converting the coal-fired power plants to be powered by natural gas.As part of the transaction, TransAlta has also entered into a long-term gas supply agreement with NGTL for a total of 400 TJ/day by 2023.Subject to customary regulatory approvals, the deal is expected to be closed in the second quarter of next year.TransAlta president and CEO Dawn Farrell said: “We are excited to work with both ATCO and NGTL to meet our gas supply requirements as we execute our strategy of providing 100% clean, reliable and affordable electricity to Albertans.”In June this year, TransAlta announced that it will sell the pipeline to NOVA Gas Transmission, a subsidiary of TC Energy for C$255m ($192m).Tidewater Midstream said that the proceeds from the transaction will be split equally between Tidewater and TansAlta. The 131km natural gas runs between Drayton Valley area and Wabamun area west of Edmonton, Alberta, Canadalast_img read more

Estate agency branch closures accelerating, high street report reveals

first_imgEstate agents were the second fastest declining retail high street category during the first half of 2018, research released this morning has revealed, beaten only by the rapid closure of pubs.Some 211 estate agency branches closed over the period, the Local Data Company (LDC) has revealed.It says the closures have been prompted by the slowdown in the housing market and are concentrated in Greater London and the South East, but the research firm says competition from Purplebricks has also played a part in squeezing fee levels and profit margins.Its report also highlights how much pressure the high street is under, revealing that 692 pubs closed between January and June this year, along with 223 electrical goods stores, 171 women’s clothes stores and 160 newsagents.Small townsOverall, the number of high street units that closed over the period increased by 16.9% compared to the same period last year, while the number of openings decreased by 2.1%.LDC says small towns are being hit hardest while larger shopping centres are proving more resilient.“The challenges faced by UK retailers showed no signs of slowing down in the first half of 2018,” the report says.“Retailers continue to fight against dented consumer confidence, political uncertainty, rising occupational costs affecting margins and increasing competition pushing prices down across key sectors.”Agents considering an alternative career on the high street might look to the key growth sectors highlighted by the report which include barber shops, beauty salons, mobile phone shops, health clubs, shoe repair bars and vaping retailers.Read the report in full.Local Data Company high streets estate agent closures November 9, 2018Nigel LewisWhat’s your opinion? Cancel replyYou must be logged in to post a comment.Please note: This is a site for professional discussion. Comments will carry your full name and company.This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.Related articles Letting agent fined £11,500 over unlicenced rent-to-rent HMO3rd May 2021 BREAKING: Evictions paperwork must now include ‘breathing space’ scheme details30th April 2021 City dwellers most satisfied with where they live30th April 2021 Home » News » Agencies & People » Estate agency branch closures accelerating, high street report reveals previous nextAgencies & PeopleEstate agency branch closures accelerating, high street report revealsClosures are concentrated in Greater London and the South East of England, the LDC research shows.Nigel Lewis9th November 201804,788 Viewslast_img read more

Classics Faculty Latin GCSE is a “definite success”

first_imgThe first students to graduate from Oxford University’s GCSE Latin Teaching Scheme received their exam results yesterday. The scheme is part of the Classics Faculty Outreach Programme, and aims to provide the chance to learn Latin to local state school students in Oxfordshire, where there are currently no schools offering the course at GCSE level. Cressida Ryan, the Classics Outreach Officer, said that the scheme was “a definite success”, with three out of twenty students having achieved an A* grade. “More state schools than private schools have some Latin, but at examination level, on timetable private schools still have the upper hand. The more that we can do to redress this imbalance, the better.” Currently there are only 13% of state schools across the UK that teach Latin, compared to 60% of independent schools. Ryan added that the view of Latin as an ‘exclusive’ or ‘elitist’ subject is a “more problematic view among adults, rather than students, who then have this perception forced upon them – hopefully this scheme will help change this.”last_img read more

Student politician accused of sexual assault

first_imgAn unnamed Oxford student politician has been accused of sexually assaulting at least two people following the publication of an OUSU pamphlet last Autumn.The pamphlet, quoted this week by The Times, contains anonymous accounts from male and female students which describe both sexual assaults the students have experienced, and also a “culture of silence” which prevented them from reporting said experiences.An anonymous female undergraduate, speaking to The Times, claimed that a ‘student politician’ sexually assaulted her last year. After meeting in a nightclub, he apparently persuaded her to accompany him to his room and then forced himself on her several times, despite her resistance.The anonymous student explained, “It was one of the more naïve thoughts I’ve ever had, but my thought process was basically: ‘He goes to Oxford, so it must be OK. People from Oxford are fine.”She had not gone to the police or university authorities as she was afraid that they would think that, “nothing had actually happened”. This student says that similar allegations were then made by another student, but that they had been “shamed” into withdrawing their accusation.  She told The Times(article behind paywall), “[The alleged attacker] was telling everyone involved that she was a slut, that she was crazy, that she was trying to cover up that she had slept with him.“It scared me, both in the general sense that I felt guilty that I wasn’t doing more against it, but also in the more personal sense that if I had said anything then no one would have believed me. The allegations in the pamphlet represent a wider problem within the university in relation to attitudes towards sexual assault. A Cherwell investigation undertaken in Michaelmas 2013 into sexual violence within the university found that, “Of 107 Oxford students asked, 83% stated that they were unsure or did not know about any options at the University should you wish to report any kind of sexual assault. Only 17% of people said they knew the support available for students who survive sexual assault.” Sarah Pine, OUSU’s Vice-President for Women, told The Times, “The overriding response is that those in positions of responsibility mediated by the university have had some victim-blaming views.“When some students have tried to pursue complaints, some colleges have responded very badly – for example, referring students to alcohol awareness courses if they were assaulted when they were drunk.”The pamphlet quoted is part of OUSU’s ‘It Happens Here’ campaign against sexual harassment within the university. According to OUSU’s website it is, “…a campaign raising awareness of sexual abuse and violence happening here in Oxford and in our University. We educate, we advocate, and we reach out, so here is where we begin to end sexual abuse and violence.”Students can also read and share anonymous “survivor stories” which are posted on the campaign’s tumblr page. The page says that, “Sexual violence can happen anywhere. It can happen to anyone. And it is happening here to students at the University of Oxford. “But far too many survivors of sexual violence are silenced. They may never tell their stories or have someone listen. So this is a place for people who have experienced sexual violence while at Oxford to share what they have gone through.” A spokesperson for the university commented, “Oxford has always taken complaints of harassment very seriously. It has a policy and procedures in place to help students make complaints in all such cases, including sexual harassment and assault.“While the OUSU publication is now out of date, the university’s culture has always been one of offering comfort and support to victims. We are committed to continually educating our staff and students on how best to offer relevant and sensitive support, working closely with OUSU on this.”last_img read more

The $2.5 Million Question: On for March 11

first_imgOcean City voters will go to the polls in a special school election on March 11 to decide on borrowing $2,497,421 to help pay for a renovation of a school built in 1965.The school district received confirmation last week that the state will pay for 40 percent of the $5,998,198 project.Touting his commitment to education, Gov. Chris Christie announced the funding in early December. But the state Department of Education could not confirm to Ocean City that the money was actually coming until late January.The uncertainty left the Ocean City Board of Education with a scheduled election, but no idea how much it would be asking of taxpayers.With the state paying $2.4 million and the district contributing about $1.1 million from a capital reserve fund, voters will be asked to fund the remaining $2.5 million through a bond issue.The election will be 3 to 9 p.m. Tuesday, March 11. A public information session on the project is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 19, in the Community Room at Ocean City High School.The project is planned for summer 2015, but the district hopes to take advantage of historically low interest rates by holding the bond referendum in March.The school needs a new roof, heating and cooling systems, plumbing and electrical systems, windows and doors. It has no air-conditioning, and some of the windows are 48-year-old originals.last_img read more

Ocean City High School Honor Roll for First Marking Period 2014-15

first_img11th Grade Distinguished HonorsCaitlin AldridgeJordan AllegrettoScott AndrewsJustin AngelastroJoshua ArnoldNicholas ArtymowiczNoah AungstLogan AvenaCharity BeckertAlyssa BellucciEmma BergmanTucker BirminghamClare BlumbergKate BlumbergSamantha BornhardtSeona BoyleOlivia BriggsJohn BrittinHarlee CancelosiFrancis CaseyJoshua ChildsZacharey ChopekJoseph CliffordWilliam CundiffPatrick CusackThomas CusackLauren DavidsonChase DevlinMark DoughtenHallie DuBruilleJeffrey EdwardsNickolas EiseleMaria FarnanGregory FischerRyan FisherCaroline FranksAnnabelle GartnerEnrique GaytanTyler GillianLily GusemanBrigit HadamRobert HambyTaylor HazlettJeffrey HoffnerNathan HollowayJulie KampfFrances KaneJuliana KemenoshMichael KimballBraedyn KistlerDean KleinschrodtEmma LarsonConnor LavertyDavid LavertyDanielle LLoydTravis LongstaffAlexandra LovePatrick ManleyChristopher MasusockBrendan McClureEdward McLaughlinKatelyn McLaughlinShannon McLaughlinAspen McNellisAlexa MealeyLiza MilovJenna MonaghanDante MonteleoneAndrew MorrillAdam MyersEvan NathanRyan OberlySarah OlandtEvan OlivaDustin OvesTaylor PaganoBrett PalmerPatrick PawlingAshlyn PetroWilliam PhillipsNicole PiergrossBrooke ProctorCarolyn ReadeAlexis RiddioughJonathan RozeOlivia RumbasWilliam RuszkowskiEmily RuthEmily RutterMolly SalmonsenRyan SaulDonald-Jan SchroderShane StackScott SteinbergColin StewartShannon StorcellaSophia TaleseJustin TrowbridgeFranklin TutelianNatalie VisoMinh VuJoseph WalkowiakJeremy WestKelsey WilliamsKevin YangBridget YoungRachael ZeidesAllison Zelinski 11th Grade HonorsMadison AndersonTaylor BarthChristian BaumgardnerKirsten BlairMadelyn BradwayHannah BromheadCassidy BuchDylan CallowayAlyssa ChainMichael ClarkAnna ColbertEdward CorcoranShane CummingsJoseph DelgrandeLouis DiLuzioNicolas DiMarcoFrederic DubbsKyle EdwardsDominique EvansDominic FiorentinoMichael FiscusMadison FluhartyNicholas FlukeyPatricia FlukeyMichael GardnerMarissa GiardinaNoah GillianDarby GrantNicholas GuidoJack HanleySarahjane HehreMadison HowellClifford HysonSean JamisonAaron KingDavid KirchhoffMackenzie KitchenRoman LaRosaFanny Le-RumeurDavid LevinZachary LisaAsa LittlefieldMadeline LogueDestina MarottaElisa MartinezJenna McGrathMaureen McLaughlinSean MooneyAmelia MorinDaria NeriKylie OlsonShannon OteriOrsalia PalapanisTucker PerkinsKatelyn PiorkowskiWilliam PooleFiona RichmondJacklyn RomanoLazaro Rosario-VegaErica RushOdalis Sacramento-MoralesFayelyn ScioliSarah ShippenKaylie ShoneJulia SolazzoJohanna TerrelsHaley VernonAbigail WaidDominique WaltersJason WarnerAnya WhitesideCharles WigginsKevin WitasickStephanie WoollertonSusan ZennarioThomas Zigner Ocean City High SchoolCongratulations to the following Ocean City High School students who made honor roll for the first marking period of the 2014-15 school year.Students receiving “Distinguished Honors” earned a weighted grade-point average of 3.8 or above. “Honors” students earned a 3.3 to 3.799. 9th Grade HonorsAlaina AllegrettoJames BaccalaEmily BellGarrett BennettLiam BergmanAndrew BiglinMya BoyleNicolette BradyParker BristolJoshua BrownLaura BurrowsCaroline ByrneDaniel CarrJohnathan CarterCassidy ChanceCalen ConnellLilly CorbisieroEmily CulmoneChad DiDonnaGiovanna DiMercurioKaitlyn DonnellyGreye DunnKaelie EllisShelby ErricksonWilliam FarnanLauren FarschonKyra FrenchParker GimbelCaitlyn GithensCollin GosnerKorey GreeneEmily GreenlingDouglas GrisbaumAbigail HackneyAndrew HollowayMadison HolmesTyler JamesThomas JamisonMelissa KampfMicaela KellyErik LarsonAbigail LauretiAnna LeapBrandon MacomAlexandra MannGia MarshelloChristopher MayWilliam McGonigle IIIDomenic MonteleoneJulian Moore-SpeelJosiah NistorenkoDaniel NunanDaniel PerezNora PerkinsJulia PestalozziKyle PhillipsKayla PicinichSeth PiersonNicholas PresnallChristopher RaniszewskiIngrid Rivero-BautistaAllison RoyIsaac RoysterMegan RundallGrace RutterRobert SchmidElizabeth SedberryJoanna SheldonElizabeth StantonAnthony StanzianiPaul StrykerJackson SullivanJohn SullivanPatrick SullivanJon TaleseTanner TomassiElizabeth TrofaGarrett VlietPatience WeaverMarian WishamJessica WrigginsKilie WyersSean Zellers 9th Grade Distinguished HonorsHenry AdairNicole AustinChristopher BaileyMichaela BakerMichael BeebePeyton BristolHailey BrownElizabeth BuchMadelyn CanusoMatthew CatanosoAlina ChiccarineAnalise CiannilliSofia CooperKristen CraftJack CrooksMatthew CrooksAmelia CullenyCassidy DiamondKellie EdwardsCatherine FaustMeghan FinleyNoah FisherHaleigh FlukeyMichael FoglioNicole FoxAndre FreireChristina FriendJulianna GallelliMikayla GephartDiana HadadOlivia HadtkeAllison HanleyHaley HarperKaitlyn HealeyHarrison HepdingAnthony HerouvisCaroline HornGrant HowellHannah IannoneAnthony JonesChase JonesNatalie KatsiffAdam KingBrenna LavertyAspen LawlerKelsey LeNoirJoseph LoggiJazmine MacDonaldWilliam MackJada MajorsRaine ManjrawalaChristina McLaughlinMorgan McLeesBridget McMenaminPeyton MeylerChrista MichelNicole MooneyDaniel MulraneyShannon MulraneyBrigid O’BoyleFalyn O’BrienShannon O’ReillyLauren OleksiakAlanna PalomboVictoria PatellaDayna PfauAvi RabiaManav RandheriRebecca ReadeMegan ReevesSophia RitzelIssac RobertsonRyan RollerLucas RooneyAmber RumakerTerence RumerSara RuthAmanda SchmidPaul ShortKara SicienskyOlivia SimoneSamantha SmithHailey StackHannah StanksMaren StickleySophia TerryNalu TripicianJoelle TuckerMary TumeltyAlexa WeberJessica YeatsMelody YoungMatthew Zelinski 12th Grade Distinguished HonorsMadelyn AdamsAdina AhlstromZachary AltieriAmber AngelucciZachary ArcherMatthew AromandoLucas BakerDavid BalicRyan BeebeMia BergmannBrooke BlumenstockJustin BoothKarissa BourbeauLauren BowersockEmily BreedNoel ButlerEdward CarterSavannah CarterBianca CisterninoTeresa CiteraKylie ClearkinZachary ColaoMadeline CrowellMichael DaddiAllison DalyMatthew DaquilaMaria DattiloJenna DelVescioLuke DemoreFiona DevineSean DoughertyAshley EdgellAnna ElmerJuliet EvansJoseph FerrilliBenjamin FischerKatilynn FosterAnnamarie FreedmanKevin GillBriarRose GinnRyan GivensEmily GrantMadeline GreaserMacKenzie GreeneRaquel GreshamMercy GriffithEpiphany GrisbaumZachary HackettBrandon HadtkeKelly HannaChristian HeistAlec HelmMalia HindleKyle HoweyBenjamin JargowskyAusten JohnsonDean JonesAugustus JurasinskiElizabeth KazanjianKira KellyAllison KirkpatrickMadison KnappSarah LauxKatie LeadbetterSofiya LebedevaEmma LeedsDaniel LoggiPatrick MartinLuke MartinoAmanda MartynClaire MateraThomas MateraChristian McDermottLaura McKinleyLauren McNallyAlison MilesKyle MillarAbigail MontemurroCorey MounceStephanie MurrayAnna MyersJoHannah NewmanCollin NobleMacy OteriEvan PearceMcKayla PerryAmy PhillipsRobert PhillipsJenner PomeroyChristina PorrecaLauren PrettymanShane RaunerMiranda RauschKristina RedmondSara RedmondRosemary ReidyAmy ReinholdRachel RinckKristi RohrerJared SavinoLogan SchettigMiranda SchumacherMelissa ScottArianna SegichAndrea SharpMartin ShawPierce ShellhornSamantha ShuldeJustin SmithKayleen SnyderNoah SpearRachel StremmeJamie TaylorDevon TerwilligerJessica TherrienNathaniel TrofaMaura TwiggsChristina UrbanMikayla UtleyMary WagnerDanielle WalawenderShannon WallaceLindsey WanHenry WeigelCelena WhiteZachary WilliamsKeith WrightGabriella WyandIvan YangMason YeagerSean YeatsCaliope Yiannos 10th Grade Distinguished HonorsPatricia AbenanteHiba AhmadRialee AllenAlyssa AltieriBradari AltmanJany AndersonMichelle ArdilesAmanda AttiyaLinda AvilaMatthew BaldiniKatelyn BarbutoMichael BeebeGarret BenvenutiLogan BloomsteadJulia BornhardtLiam BradleyFiona BreslinJoshua BrookAbigail BroschardKimberly BrownNicholas CanusoSara CaraccioloBenjamin CardwellMia CaucciChanhi ChhethLeigh Anne ClarkeSydney CouvalRosalia DaddiJacob DavisAnthony DeLeoGiovanina DeLucaSamantha DeRobertisLuke DiceFelicia DillonJulia DiPietroAndrew DonoghueDaniel DulinNicholl FentonSebastian FineLaura FithianAustin FoxValerie GalderisiSarah GardnerIsabella GilhooleyShannon GillAlexander GorskiJane HadleyJulia HansenJacey HansonAnthony HavensJulia HerringtonKeani HindleSamantha HorowitzPaul HowellJohn IaconelliJanae IsaacsAshley JamisonWilliam JohnsonEmma KellyPatrick KistlerSarah KrajicekNicole KramerDawson KuhnSean LaneGiuliana LeottaSarah LuceyMadeleine MartinelliElizabeth MayKaylin McAndrewsRylee McDonnellVictoria McHughMatthew MetzlerMadison MontaneroLiam MulhallAllison NovasitisAmanda NunanThomas OlandtAlexis PaoneAleva ParkerMackenzie PearceSamantha PeaschekAndrew PensaMorgan PfauPhoebe PrettymanDevon PunthrangkulScott RedmondJulie ReevesJohn RiordanGrace SaccoJonathan SalkeldMichael SaulJared SchiavoneJason SchiavoneNicole SeitherJasmine ShamCasey SigmundJacob SimoneBrianna SnyderAndrew TomainoMatthew TorrenceDaniel WalshForest WanNicholas WilliamsKasey YunghansTaylor Zeides 10th Grade HonorsChristian AdamsJulianne AffanatoHanna BannerEmily BatastiniElizabeth BlankleyCourtney BodenschatzDaniel BowersockBrittany BroomellMacie BuchTaylor CarrTrisa ChakrabortyMadison CompareBryce CoxJack CrowellThomas DahlAllison DiAngelisKillian DoughertySamantha DragonDelany DriscollKayla EisenlohrElaine EstlowSadie FordEllie FranckleAnthony GarreffiJacob GiblinDominic GulloAbigail HackettBrooke HandleyDara HennessyThomas HenryMatthew HolmesThomas HulseMadison HuntSteven JerneeMiranda JonesMegan KeenanAliyah KellyAnna KellyJulia KennedyMadison KitchenMark KolmerMatthew LashleyCourtney LeonardTrent MarkleyOlivia MartinelliHolly McCrossonJacob McNellisAmanda MeachonDanielle MenchenEvan MonteithMegan MontemurroValentina NeelyChristopher NeyNicole NunanAbbygayle O’BoyleKyle O’ConnorJenna ObergAshley OgurekMatthew OleksiakCelvin Pelaez-GonzalezLogan PierpointCaroline PizzanoAlexandria PursgloveOlivia QuinnDevon RaabChristopher RicchiShamus Roberts-CampbellChristopher RobertsonMiriam Rosario-VegaKyle RumakerJordan SabatinoColton Salomon-LowdenSteven SavageEmily SchererHeather SchweibinzBrooke SegichAlexandra SharpAlyssa ShifflerNoah SicienskyJenna SiederJacob SmithMeredith SteeleGeorge SwensenTorre TeiseJoseph TripoliMadeline Walker HughesSeth WoodRachel WrightStellanie Yiannos 12th Grade HonorsShelby AlvordCourtney AttenboroughKaren AvilaRussell BelzCori BermanLaura BlaineMegan BolognoSebastian BondGabrielle BreazealeCree BrownZachary BusamLucia CasalenoDana CatesFrank ChristyKyle ConradOwen DierolfJulia DragonRussell EggertHannah EilerOlivia EnsmingerBrian FosterCarlo GallelliDillon GerberAmbrosia GibboneyYuri GiezaJonathan GiftMaggie GrimesJeremy GrundMatthew HarperRebecca HenrySarah HoffmannScott HoganNicholas HornickKrista IannoneJacqueline KerKelsey KosturkoWilliam KosturkoBrian KupersteinMaya LawsYeoryia LemoniotisRyan LewandowskiGabrielle LombardoRichard LowtherHannah LuceyRobert MacomRosa MartinezJoshua MazzoniPatrick McCarronErin McMurrayMary MillarMary NeyAlexxa PastoreEmily PensaLauren PhiferJohn PiccininoRebecca PiotrowskiBrianna RamosSamantha RavelliMichael RicchiTyler SchlamSierra SchoenewaldBrandon SibitzkySamantha SleisterJessica SykesMatthew UnsworthMatthew Zennariolast_img 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first_imgThe predicted sale of Northern Foods bakery businesses, after two recent profits warnings, has finally taken place. A sudden change in eating habits with consumers turning towards more ‘perceived healthy foods’ plus rising energy costs are blamed but the company has been a serial underperformer for some years. I remember when Paul Fletcher of Fletchers Bakeries happily informed me that he and Chris Haskins (now Lord Haskins) had got together and agreed the sale of the bakery business “over a handshake and a lunch”. He felt it finally secured the family firm’s future. But since then many companies have jumped on the bakery bandwagon. Some have had massive grants to fund expansion, others, like Northern have not managed to keep pace with change, competition or, of course, energy prices. Uncertain times lie ahead with the break up but with massive debts of around £363 million there was no choice. Indeed I am not sure even now that it has sold off enough.Meanwhile, in Scotland, at the annual Scottish Master Bakers conference, bakery education was THE topic.There are not enough skilled bakers in the UK and Ireland and it is felt most acutely by craft and in-stores bakeries. So the big news was the launch of a brand new training centre for bakers in Scotland, made possible by the generosity of Mathiesons.What impresses me most about the SAMB, apart from its finances, is its education policy. Arthur Rayer and John Livingstone, under the leadership of chief executive Kirk Hunter, are so pro-active and pioneering. Every single year they investigate the changing needs of members. Then they get down to the hard graft necessary to secure the funding, train the trainers (six) and deliver the courses – to 900 students so far!But I can’t help noticing that all this is going ahead without any input from Improve – the sector skills council for food and drink. There is a baking industry feeling that Improve cares more about big companies, which is ironic because they are normally wealthy enough to fund and put in place their own training. It is small companies that lack resources and time to train. So I find myself asking: does the SAMB really need Improve or does Improve have something to learn from the speed, care and efficiency of the SAMB?last_img read more

Boozy cakes bust

first_imgWelsh bakery Clam’s Handmade Cakes is very proud of its award-winning whisky cake, but its plans for wide distribution have been stymied by clipboard-wielding officials, who have declared the confection so high in alcohol that it cannot be sold by shops unless they have a licence. But the story has made Clam’s the talk of its home town, Crickhowell, and everyone is keen to try a slice. Rumours that local police are planning to make cake-driving a criminal offence are mere speculation.last_img

3 Former Track Athletes Suing NCAA, Coach Over Alleged Abuse

first_imgShare:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window) Photo: PixabayANN ARBOR — Former Olympic high jumper Erin Aldrich planned to die with a secret she kept quiet for two-plus decades: an affair with a college coach she began falling in love with as a teenager and with whom she had an sexual relationship as a young woman.When Aldrich watched “Leaving Neverland,” about a year ago, the documentary featuring stories of men who say the late Michael Jackson sexually abused them as boys, she decided it was time to share her story.“I had always told myself I was going to take this to the grave,” Aldrich said during an interview with The Associated Press on Wednesday night in which she he claimed John Rembao began grooming her for a romantic relationship when she was a high school junior. “When I watched “Leaving Neverland,” it suddenly dawned on me that I was one of those boys, just a little bit older.”Aldrich is one of three former student-athletes who say, in a lawsuit filed against the NCAA, that they were sexually abused by a track coach and allege the governing body and its board of governors didn’t do enough to protect them. Londa Bevins, Jessica Johnson and Aldrich — who represented the U.S. in the 2000 Olympics — are seeking class action status for the lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court in San Jose, California. The women say they were sexually abused and harassed by Rembao while he worked at the University of Texas and the University of Arizona.The suit aims to include NCAA student-athletes, who also say they were put at risk by the inaction of the governing body since 1992.Rembao led the Longhorns’ cross country program and was an assistant for their track team from 1997 to 2001. He was an assistant coach for the Wildcats’ track program from 1993 to 1997.“The behavior alleged in this story is disturbing,” Texas athletic director Chris Del Conte said. “Our current coaches and staff know that such behavior is totally unacceptable and will not be tolerated at the University of Texas.”Rembao declined to comment, via email, on the allegations in the lawsuit.The suit filed by law firms FeganScott and Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein says the NCAA failed to stop sexual abuse and harassment of student-athletes by coaches at all member schools.The Associated Press left messages seeking comment with the NCAA as well as the University of Arizona.Rembao was suspended Dec. 18, 2019, for undisclosed allegations of misconduct by the U.S. Center for SafeSport, an organization that investigates sex-abuse claims in Olympic sports. He has worked at the University of California, Santa Cruz, for more than seven years, according to his LinkedIn profile, and is currently the assistant director of employer relations at the school.In an interview on Tuesday with USA Today, Rembao denied the allegations brought against him by the three women in the lawsuit.“This is ridiculous,” Rembao said in a story published by USA Today. “It never happened. This is completely false. This is just making me angry because this is all crap.”The NCAA, which is headquartered in Indianapolis, is a member-led organization comprised of nearly 11,000 colleges and universities and nearly a half-million student-athletes competing in 24 sports.The plaintiffs are asking for new policies to be adopted immediately regarding coach-student relationships and for compensation for those subjected to abuse because the NCAA did not implement best practices.The filing comes in the wake of revelations at the University of Michigan along with allegations and investigations of sexual abuse made by patients of sports doctors at other universities, including Michigan State, Ohio State and Minnesota.Aldrich was on Arizona’s track and field and volleyball teams during the 1996-97 season and she transferred to Texas to compete in the high jump from 1997 to 2000. Rembao was one of her coaches. The Olympian and NCAA champion runner claims Rembao sexually abused her at Arizona and later harassed when she was competing for the Longhorns.“He was my first sexual experience,” Aldrich recalled in a telephone interview. “When we were going to world juniors, when I had just turned 18, he put a blanket over my lap and he penetrated me with his fingers.”Johnson and Bevins say Rembao sexually abused and harassed them while they were on Texas’ track team as a freshman during the 1999-2000 season.“We had been at Texas for eight months and had enough,” Bevins recalled in a telephone interview.Both Bevins and Johnson gave up their scholarships after one school year and transferred to Arkansas.“After the spring semester of 2000, I was depressed, anxious and cutting myself,” Johnson recalled.Johnson said her concerns about Rembao were expressed in a formal complaint to the University of Texas in the summer of 2000, detailing alleged abuse in a 22-page document.“I thought because they’re adults, I’m going to tell them my story and they’re going to believe me,” Jonson said in a telephone interview. “No one did. None of them had my best interest in mind.”New York-based lawyer Annika K. Martin, one of the attorneys who filed the lawsuit, said the three brave women are speaking not only for themselves, but for all student-athletes who the NCAA put at risk and allowed to be harmed.“They are not just asking the NCAA to pay for past wrongs, they are also asking the NCAA to change to protect current and future student-athletes,” Martin said.The lawsuit raises the second issue of serious misconduct by a Texas women’s track coach in the early 2000s. Former women’s head coach Bev Kearney was fired by the school in early 2013 after one of her former athletes alerted them to a consensual relationship between the pair a decade earlier.In dismissing Kearney, Texas officials said she had crossed a line between athlete and coach. Kearney sued Texas on race and gender discrimination claims and later reached an undisclosed settlement with the university.And in 2009, former football assistant Major Applewhite was disciplined for an improper relationship with a student trainer on a bowl game trip. He was not fired.Martin said a team of attorneys is willing to represent anyone who says they were put at risk by the NCAA after the U.S. Olympic Committee stated all sexual contact between coaches and student-athletes should be prohibited 28 years ago.“The NCAA should have made that same prohibition to its member schools in 1992, if not before,” Martin said.last_img read more

Fruit Pest Research

first_imgThe University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences (CAES) has been awarded a $5.4 million grant by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture to develop long-term, sustainable methods for controlling the spotted wing drosophila (SWD).Native to Asia, SWD is a tiny fly that was first detected in California in 2008 and has since emerged as a devastating pest of small and stone fruits throughout the U.S., valued at $5.8 billion in damage annually. It affects soft-skinned fruits such as blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, strawberries, cherries and others.Blueberry entomologist and coordinator of the UGA Integrated Pest Management Program, Ashfaq Sial is leading a multistate team of researchers from 10 land-grant universities and the USDA to develop and implement long-term sustainable strategies to control SWD.The pest has caused blueberry crop losses of up to 20% annually. Blueberries are Georgia’s top fruit crop and ninth-largest agricultural commodity with an estimated $300 million in value, according to UGA agricultural economists.This project builds on previous work to develop control strategies in response to the crisis situation created after the detection and widespread distribution of this devastating invasive pest in all fruit-growing regions of the U.S. The team made substantial progress by refining monitoring tools, developing effective insecticide-based management programs, identifying effective cultural controls, and screening native and exotic biological control agents to address the drosophila invasion.  “The progress we’ve made is great, but SWD management is still highly insecticide dependent and is further challenged by secondary pest outbreaks, insecticide resistance and increased input costs,” explained Sial. “Because SWD has become established as a keystone pest throughout the U.S., it’s critical to develop more sustainable strategies to manage it.”The goal of this new project is to pivot away from crisis response to build a long-term, integrated and systems-based approach to managing SWD. The team will work with region- and crop-specific teams of growers to implement best management programs, evaluate alternatives to insecticides, assess and reduce the risk of insecticide resistance development, and develop and disseminate actionable recommendations that enable producers to optimize pest management decisions for sustainable SWD management. They will also develop economically based decision aid tools to increase profitability and evaluate the impact of these initiatives.The team aims to develop and deliver systems-based integrated management programs to berry and cherry growers that are cost effective and environmentally sustainable for long-term management of SWD in the U.S. Ultimately, implementing these solutions will directly contribute to the long-term profitability and sustainability of farms and farmers nationwide.Joining Sial on this project is Kay Kelsey, a professor and evaluation expert in the CAES Department of Agricultural Leadership, Education and Communication. Other collaborators and their institutions include Hannah Burrack, North Carolina State University; Kent Daane, University of California Berkeley; Rufus Isaacs, Michigan State University; Greg Loeb and Miguel Gomez, Cornell University; Cesar Rodriguez-Saona, Rutgers University; Philip Fanning, University of Maine; Elizabeth Beers, Tobin Northfield, Karina Gallardo and Gwen Hoheisel, Washington State University; Vaughn Walton, Oregon State University; Joanna Chiu and Frank Zalom, University of California Davis; and Kim Hoelmer and Xingeng Wang, USDA Agricultural Research Service in Newark, Delaware.To learn more on pest management strategies and research, visit read more