“Get on with the job” – Mica Action Group urges govt to give redress scheme ‘ urgency it deserves’

first_imgMembers of the Mica Action Group (MAG) have urged the government to start the roll-out of the highly anticipated redress scheme to enable repair of the homes of those affected by the defective blocks issue across the county.The announcement comes as homeowners await details on how a €20million investment, which was announced earlier this year, will be used on a redress scheme.On Tuesday, Minister Joe McHugh said that a ‘special funding pot’ of €40million will be set aside in 2020 for the fixing of homes affected by both Mica and Pyrite. However, MAG believes that this is not nearly enough to get all of the homes fixed; where government estimates put the number of those affected to be in the region of 5000 homes.Ann Owens Chairperson of the MAG said: “Over the course of the last number of months, MAG asked the Department of Housing for a significant increase in the Budget for 2020 to enable work to get underway to fix the homes of those affected by the mica issue.“With the allocation of an additional twenty-million euro, our initial thoughts were that this was not nearly enough to fix all of the homes affected.“However, we have sought clarity on this issue and today received confirmation that should this money be spent throughout 2020, we are in position to seek further drawdown of funds from the Department of Housing to continue this work over the course of this year. “This is what happened in the case of Pyrite and Minister Damien English has confirmed MAG are in position to seek the same treatment to apply to homeowners in Donegal.“Currently we have over 1400 homeowners registered with MAG, however, we believe the number to be significantly larger than this.“It is imperative that affected homeowners continue to register in order for us to continue to exert pressure on government and to illustrate the huge scale of this problem.“Importantly, the level of the Budget allocated becomes significant only when the actual scheme is opened.  Last week it was one year since we received the news that redress was approved by Cabinet.“It is very disappointing and frustrating therefore to think that a year on we are still effectively no further forward and few details of the scheme have been provided and importantly the applications process is still not open. “It is time to give this issue the urgency it deserves. We have had enough procrastination and delay and quite honestly homeowners are at the end of their tether.“On a daily basis, we are contacted by homeowners who tell us how their homes are deteriorating at an alarming rate. Over the weekend one of these families posted a video on our Facebook page showing the blocks in such bad condition now that they simply disintegrate in the home owner’s hands.“This situation is a catastrophe waiting to happen and the Government is putting homeowners lives at risk and in an impossible position as they have nowhere else to go.“There is no single bigger issue than this in the county at the minute and it is time that those tasked with finalising this scheme and with its roll-out, treated this with the immediate action it deserves. “We, therefore, call on the Department of Housing and Donegal County Council to stop pointing the finger at each other and to just get on with the job of getting the homes of families who are desperately affected by this issue, fixed as soon as possible.”“Get on with the job” – Mica Action Group urges govt to give redress scheme ‘ urgency it deserves’ was last modified: October 14th, 2019 by Shaun KeenanShare 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)last_img read more

UEFA EURO U-21 2019: Predictions for Playoffs and Players

first_imgEmbed from Getty ImagesUEFA European Championship U-21 is back this year in Italy and San Marino. The tournament, which is also considered the early stage for the future stars, is held in two countries for the first time. However, unlike most double-host championships, only one host country, Italy, is given a privilege to qualify directly while San Marino, unfortunately, is not.   As the cup is in full swing, you can track the odds on it on 22BET sportsbook: https://22bet.co.uk/sportThis year EURO U-21 edition, in which VAR (Video Assistant Referee) technology will be introduced for the first time, is regarded as the European qualifying round for the 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympic Games too. All three group winners plus one best runner-up in the tournament will qualify in Japan next year. However, should England be one of the semi finalists, certain play-off will be played. It is due to the fact that England is not a member of IOC (International Olympics Committee).U21 Players to WatchDespite the play-off complexity, the 2019 UEFA European Championship U-21 will not lack of its attractions as a number of young stars in top European leagues this season have been included in their teams official squad. Some notable ones are the newly transferred Real Madrid striker, Luka Jovic (Serbia), Madrid’s midfielder who won golden ball in the previous edition, Dani Ceballos (Spain), RB Leipzig’s regular defender, Lukas Klostermann (Germany), Crystal Palace’s defender who has been Manchester United’s upcoming target in the summer transfer, Aaron Wan-Bissaka and the ‘English Iniesta’ in Manchester City, Phil Foden (both from England), Lyon’s main scorer, Moussa Dembele (France) and Italian Serie-A top talents, Nicolo Barella, Nicolo Zaniolo, Federico Chiesa and Juventus sensational youngster, Moise Kean (Italy).Embed from Getty ImagesFavourite U21 TeamsWith those talents who have been called up for Euro 2020 qualifiers recently in the squad as well as being the host of the 2019 UEFA European Championship U-21, Italy is obviously the main favourite of the tournament. They have an opportunity to win their sixth title although it may not be easy. Their main contenders are England, Spain and surely the reigning Champions Germany.UEFA U21 Euro PredictionsIn the group stage, all favourites will not advance to semi final without difficulty. In group A, for example, the host and Spain will have to compete for being the group winner. The Italian side will possibly win against Belgium and Poland but might be involved in a tie game against Spain. The goal difference will probably play bigger role to decide the one on the top. Their key player’s experience in the senior squad could enable them to score more goals than Spain, which rely on less well-known scorer such as Borja Mayoral or Pablo Fornals.Meanwhile in group B, Germany is likely to be challenged by Serbia with Luka Jovic and Fiorentina’s defender, Nikola Milenkovic in it and the dark horse Denmark. Yet, Der Panzer’s strong mentality could lead them to win in all three games and seal the top of the standings while Serbia and Denmark will fight for the runner-up spot. In group C, England have more convincing players in their squad than France. James Maddison, Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Demarai Gray, Dominic Calvert-Lewin, Harvey Barnes, Phil Foden and Angus Gunn are more used to the competitive matches in the Premier League. Meanwhile, France only have Dayot Upamecano (RB Leipzig), Moussa Dembele and Houssem Aourar (Lyon) plus Matteo Guendouzi (Arsenal) in their squad. They should provide the necessary rivalry for The Three Lions in the group. However, England should potentially topple France on the standings.If all goes well, Italy will be playing against France as the best runner-up in the semifinal while the other one could be the replay of the 2017 edition, Germany versus England. This will be tough to predict. Yet, the ideal final would be between the reigning champions and the host. Italy might eventually end their long wait since 2004 by winning the 2019 UEFA European Championship U-21. As for the Olympic game play-off, Spain will be up against Serbia. The Matador could potentially secure one spot in Tokyo 2020. Follow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebookby Taboolaby TaboolaSponsored LinksSponsored LinksPromoted LinksPromoted LinksRecommended for youAspireAbove.comRemember Pauley Perrette? Try Not To Smile When You See Her NowAspireAbove.comUndoRome Hotels | Search AdsRome Hotels Might be Cheaper Than You ThinkRome Hotels | Search AdsUndoLifestly.com25 Celebs You Didn’t Realize Are Gay – No. 8 Will Surprise WomenLifestly.comUndoUsed Cars | Search AdsUsed Cars in Tuen Mun Might Be Cheaper Than You ThinkUsed Cars | Search AdsUndoezzin.com20 Breathtaking Places to See Before You Dieezzin.comUndoFood World Magazine15 Fruits that Burn Fat Like CrazyFood World MagazineUndoHappyTricks.comHer House Always Smells Amazing – Try her Unique Trick!HappyTricks.comUndoDrhealth35 Foods That Should Never Be Placed in the RefrigeratorDrhealthUndolast_img read more

Evidence-Based Cosmology

first_imgFrom what we observe, we can draw inferences without the need to posit occult phenomena.Anthropic ObservablesFine tuning: A new measurement of the ratio between proton and neutron masses was calculated ab initio by European scientists. This ratio is very important for the stability of atoms. Their result, published by Science Magazine, confirms the narrow range of values that make our universe possible:The existence and stability of atoms rely on the fact that neutrons are more massive than protons. The measured mass difference is only 0.14% of the average of the two masses. A slightly smaller or larger value would have led to a dramatically different universe….The mass of the visible universe is a consequence of the strong interaction, which is the force that binds together quarks into protons and neutrons. To establish this with percent-level accuracy, very precise calculations based on the lattice formulation of quantum chromodynamics (QCD), the theory of the strong interaction, were needed. Going beyond such calculations to control much finer effects that are at the per mil (‰) level is necessary to, for instance, account for the relative neutron-proton mass difference, which was experimentally measured to be close to 0.14%. Precisely, this difference is needed to explain the physical world as we know it today. For example, a relative neutron-proton mass difference smaller than about one third of the observed 0.14% would cause hydrogen atoms to undergo inverse beta decay, leaving predominantly neutrons. A value somewhat larger than 0.05% would have resulted in the Big Bang Nucleosynthesis (BBN), producing much more helium-4 and far less hydrogen than it did in our universe. As a result, stars would not have ignited in the way they did. On the other hand, a value considerably larger than 0.14% would have resulted in a much faster beta decay for neutrons. This would have led to far fewer neutrons at the end of the BBN epoch and would have made the burning of hydrogen in stars and the synthesis of heavy elements more difficult. We show here that this tiny mass splitting is the result of a subtle cancellation between electromagnetic and quark mass difference effects. In combination with astrophysical and cosmological arguments, this figure can be used to determine how different values of these parameters would change the content of the universe. This in turn provides an indication of the extent to which these constants of nature must be fine-tuned to yield a universe that resembles ours.Their calculation of the mass difference – 0.14% — is very tight: almost one in a thousand. If that ratio varied by one-third of that tiny amount, a universe with stars and complex life could not exist. In a summary of the paper in Science, Jelena Stajic agrees:Elementary science textbooks often state that protons have the same mass as neutrons. This is not far from the truth—the neutron is about 0.14% heavier (and less stable) than the proton. The precise value is important, because if the mass difference were bigger or smaller, the world as we know it would likely not exist. Borsanyi et al. calculated the mass difference to high precision using a sophisticated approach that took into account the various forces that exist within a nucleon. The calculations reveal how finely tuned our universe needs to be.This paper dealt with things that can be observed and measured: protons, neutrons, and (by consequence) stars, planets, and life.Matters Dark and MysteriousIn the same issue of Science Magazine, however, other cosmologists are on a losing quest for something they cannot see and do not understand: dark matter. Even the name sounds occult. Whatever it is (if it exists), it is “in a form outside the standard model of particle physics.” Astrophysicists have been searching for dark matter (inferred only by its supposed gravitational effects) for years now. New results announced by the ESA/Hubble Information Centre say that dark matter is “even darker than once thought.”Using the Hubble Space Telescope and Chandra X-Ray Observatory, astronomers looked for dark matter interactions in two colliding galaxy clusters but found none. The results show that “dark matter interacts with itself even less than previously thought, and narrows down the options for what this mysterious substance might be.”We know how ordinary matter acts when it collides: it leaves detectable “wreckage” behind. Dark matter, by contrast, is “a giant question mark looming over our knowledge of the Universe,” the press release says. The non-detection of a recognizable interaction cross-section adds to the pile of failed searches (see 10/30/13, 10/06/14). If it was crunch time in 1/24/15, it’s even more so now. Are cosmologists on a snipe hunt, looking for a phantom that doesn’t exist? The BBC News comes just shy of calling it a ghost story:“If you want to figure out what something is made out of, you knock it, or you throw it across the room and see where the bits go.”In this case, the bits went straight through each other.Unlike the gas clouds, which grind to a turbulent halt, and the stars, which mostly glide past each other, the ubiquitous dark matter passes through everything and emerges unscathed, like a ghost.To be sure, there are still some options available for the searchers, but they are narrowing. How much more time do they get, before unbiased observers accuse them of tinkering with mythology? (1/24/14). Remember, these same secular cosmologists—most of them materialists—believe in another occult phenomenon, dark energy, that is even more mysterious. Yet dark energy is supposed to be even more plentiful than dark matter (10/21/12). The universe we observe, they claim, represents only 4% of reality.If one believes occult phenomena account for 96% of reality, then anything is possible. No wonder NASA’s Astrobiology Magazine speculated that dark matter might have been responsible for mass extinctions and geologic upheavals. Ghosts can do mysterious things in the dark.So there you have it. The fine-tuning of the cosmos is evidence-based, backed up by decades of precise measurements. The effects of fine tuning are clearly seen in the things that are measurable and observable: stars, planets, life, and our own bodies. Dark matter, by contrast, has no hard evidence. Believers are running out of options for their Mysterious Unknown Stuff.Unless you are prepared to jump off the deep end with unverifiable imaginations about multiverses and Boltzmann brains (akin to paranoid delusions), you’re stuck with evidence-based cosmology. Fine-tuning implies a self-existent Tuner outside the cosmos. Check the scoreboard: intelligent design 100, unguided materialism 0. Now go watch Privileged Species featuring Michael Denton for relief of stress caused by occult speculations. (Visited 49 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

PMLA case: Ex-Himachal CM Virbhadra Singh, wife get bail

first_imgA special court on Thursday granted bail to former Himachal Pradesh chief minister Virbhadra Singh, his wife and three others in a ₹7-crore money laundering case.Special Judge Arvind Kumar granted the relief to Mr. Singh and his wife Pratibha Singh, who were present in the court in response to the summons issued against them on the last date of hearing.The court also granted bail to Universal Apple Associate owner Chunni Lal Chauhan, besides other accused Prem Raj and Lawan Kumar Roach.All the accused got the relief on furnishing a personal bond of ₹50,000 and one surety of the same amount each.During the proceedings, ED counsel Nitesh Rana opposed their bail plea, seeking judicial custody for them.The court, however, granted them bail considering they were not arrested by the ED during investigation.The court had, on February 12, issued summons against the accused saying there was enough prima facie evidence against them.last_img read more

Government Encourages BPO Stakeholders to Plan the Way Forward

first_imgStory Highlights Speaking at a VIP Luncheon and Awards on the final day of the Outsource2Jamaica Symposium and Expo at the Montego Bay Convention Centre, recently, Mrs. Williams said the sector has been expanding and impacting Jamaicans at all levels. The BPO sector is one of the fastest growing industries, which has contributed in excess of US$400 million to Jamaica’s economy, and has exponential multiplier effects with other sectors, such as security, transportation, retail, food and beverage, insurance, financial and others. Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Finance and the Public Service, Hon. Fayval Williams is encouraging stakeholders in the Business Process Outsourcing sector (BPO) to come together and plan the way forward for the rapidly growing industry. Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Finance and the Public Service, Hon. Fayval Williams is encouraging stakeholders in the Business Process Outsourcing sector (BPO) to come together and plan the way forward for the rapidly growing industry.Speaking at a VIP Luncheon and Awards on the final day of the Outsource2Jamaica Symposium and Expo at the Montego Bay Convention Centre, recently, Mrs. Williams said the sector has been expanding and impacting Jamaicans at all levels.“We can all see the industry developing island wide. It’s no longer just in Kingston and St. James but also in other parishes. That is growth we can all be excited about,” she stated.The BPO sector is one of the fastest growing industries, which has contributed in excess of US$400 million to Jamaica’s economy, and has exponential multiplier effects with other sectors, such as security, transportation, retail, food and beverage, insurance, financial and others.For her part, President of Jamaica Promotions Corporation (JAMPRO) Diane Edwards said Jamaica’s rising profile as the ideal Caribbean destination for the BPO sector, is a result of years of partnerships and developments.“Outsourcing continues to grow far beyond estimates, as the industry experiences a boom in new projects and expansions,” she noted.Meanwhile, Minister without portfolio in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, Hon. Karl Samuda said the industry represents the fastest growing sector in the Jamaican economy, accounting for over 26,000 jobs and projecting to add at least another 5,000 by 2019.“At the end of 2017, following the rapid expansion of the sector, revenues climbed to an excess of US$400 million. These impressive statistics represent an industry that is keen to engage our Jamaican youth and provide a stable source of income to many Jamaican families,” he stated.At the event, four awards were handed out for outstanding contributions to the BPO sector over the years.Tech Company Conduit Jamaica, received the BPO Economic Impact Award; while former Technology Minister, Phillip Paulwell, received the award for outstanding work in the development of the BPO sector.In addition, businessman Gordon Marzouca, received the Pioneer Award in private sector development; while Former Prime Minister, The Most Hon. Edward Seaga received the Pioneer Award in Outsourcing.The Outsource2Jamaica Symposium and Expo was put on by the Business Process Industry Association of Jamaica (BPIAJ) and its members and partners, including JAMPRO.last_img read more