Chart in charity initiative

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Australia: Oceanlinx Prepares for Construction of Port MacDonnell Wave Energy Project

first_imgOceanlinx, an international company in the field of wave energy, is preparing for the development of the Port MacDonnell wave power project this week, according to the ABC news site.The project worth AUD 7 million involves building of a 20-square metre offshore concrete unit, which will have the ability to supply electricity to 1,000 Port MacDonnell households. The necessary equipment has started arriving to the site where the construction workers have already started the preliminary work. The construction itself is expected to start by the end of this month, or early next month, so the development of the project is on track and is progressing as scheduled. “Construction people will be pouring concrete and doing the construction work and hopefully, it’s quite exciting, we hope very soon to get everything up and running basically,” Oceanlinx CEO Ali Baghaei is quoted by the ABC as saying.The wave power project is scheduled to be connected to the grid by the end of the year.[mappress]Offshore WIND Staff, June 12, 2013; Image: oceanlinxlast_img read more

The lawyers’ playground

first_imgTo continue enjoying Building.co.uk, sign up for free guest accessExisting subscriber? LOGIN Subscribe now for unlimited access Get your free guest access  SIGN UP TODAY Stay at the forefront of thought leadership with news and analysis from award-winning journalists. Enjoy company features, CEO interviews, architectural reviews, technical project know-how and the latest innovations.Limited access to building.co.ukBreaking industry news as it happensBreaking, daily and weekly e-newsletters Subscribe to Building today and you will benefit from:Unlimited access to all stories including expert analysis and comment from industry leadersOur league tables, cost models and economics dataOur online archive of over 10,000 articlesBuilding magazine digital editionsBuilding magazine print editionsPrinted/digital supplementsSubscribe now for unlimited access.View our subscription options and join our communitylast_img read more

A lesson from history: realise the pain early when recession looms

first_imgStay at the forefront of thought leadership with news and analysis from award-winning journalists. Enjoy company features, CEO interviews, architectural reviews, technical project know-how and the latest innovations.Limited access to building.co.ukBreaking industry news as it happensBreaking, daily and weekly e-newsletters Subscribe now for unlimited access To continue enjoying Building.co.uk, sign up for free guest accessExisting subscriber? LOGIN Get your free guest access  SIGN UP TODAY Subscribe to Building today and you will benefit from:Unlimited access to all stories including expert analysis and comment from industry leadersOur league tables, cost models and economics dataOur online archive of over 10,000 articlesBuilding magazine digital editionsBuilding magazine print editionsPrinted/digital supplementsSubscribe now for unlimited access.View our subscription options and join our communitylast_img read more

Start the clock…

first_imgThe government has tightened up the 30 day payment rule on public sector contracts. Regulation 113 of the Public Contracts Regulations 2015 applies to contracts entered into on or after 26 February 2015. The contracts must have been issued by UK government departments, agencies and non-departmental public bodies, or English public bodies such as NHS trusts and local authorities. These are collectively referred to in the regulations as “contracting authorities”. A contracting authority that is a maintained school (funded by a local authority) or an academy (funded by the government) is exempt.Regulation 113 imposes a duty on contracting authorities to ensure that contracts contain a requirement to pay within 30 days. They must also ensure that clauses to the same effect are contained in subcontracts and sub-subcontracts.Contractors can establish whether a contracting authority complies with this by visiting its website; public bodies are legally obliged to confirm their compliance on their websites. A recent survey carried out by the Electrical Contractors’ Association revealed that 5 in 10 councils have still to comply with Regulation 113.Where this requirement is not included in a contract or subcontract, there is, in any event, a term implied by Regulation 113(6) that payment must be made within 30 days.Even if the payment periods in your contract are more than 30 days, you still have a statutory right to be paid within 30 daysThis means that, even if the payment periods stated in your contract are more than 30 days, you still have a statutory right to be paid within 30 days. Where payments are made later than the 30 days, you have a right to levy statutory interest under the Late Payments of Commercial Debts (Interest) Act 1998 and the Late Payment of Commercial Debts Regulations 2002 and 2013.Where you have concerns about the solvency of the paying party, such as a main contractor, you may wish to suspend performance of any or all of your contractual obligations on the expiry of the 30 days (rather than waiting for payment on the expiry of the contractual payment period).When Regulation 113 was implemented, it was unclear as to when, in construction contracts, the 30 days started from. The answer under Regulation 113 is the point at which invoices are verified as being valid and undisputed. However, this does not align easily with the statutory payment notice procedure in construction contracts. In response to concerns over this, raised by SEC Group with the Cabinet Office, revised statutory guidance has been issued.This advises that the start dates for the 30 days under construction contracts are as follows:Where the paying party is required to issue the statutory payment notice under the Construction Act (within five days of the payment due date), the 30 days starts the day after the notice is issued. Therefore, the maximum period between the due date and the final date for payment must be 35 days on public sector contracts and subcontracts.Where the paying party is required to issue the payment notice but has failed to do so, the 30 days starts the day after the date when the notice should have been issued or the date when you issued a default notice, whichever is later. If your contract requires or permits you to issue a payment application, the application takes effect as the default notice immediately on the expiry of the five days after the due payment date.Where you have issued the payment notice, the 30 days starts the day after the date on which the notice was issued. In this case, it is in the interests of the party receiving payment to issue the notice as early as possible.Use of a project bank account enables all parties to be paid within the 30 days and within as little as 10-12 daysThe statutory guidance advises that compliance with Regulation 113 can be achieved through using a project bank account (PBA). Government departments and agencies are required to use PBAs “unless there are compelling reasons not to do so”. The use of a PBA enables all parties – including sub-subcontractors – to be paid well within the 30 days and within as little as 10-12 days.If a public body or a contractor above you is applying a term longer than 30 days, a complaint can be made to the government’s Mystery Shopper Scheme complaint service. To preserve your anonymity, you can complain through a trade association but you will need to produce the terms in your contract/subcontract that provide for payments to be made later than 30 days. The scheme has already received complaints on this.This regulation is potentially far reaching. It attempts to standardise 30 day payment terms up and down the supply chain on all public works contracts. But you may have to police the process to ensure that 30 day terms are being applied.Professor Rudi Klein is a barrister and chief executive of the Specialist Engineering Contractors’ Grouplast_img read more

Emirates’ sees a flying boat

first_imgEmirates SkyCargo transported the race boat and all associated support equipment including the team’s chase boat. The consignment had a total weight of 44,490 kg (44.49 tonnes).  At over eight tonnes, the team’s chase boat was the heaviest individual component in the shipment, while the largest items were the ship’s two hulls which measured over 15 m each in length.In order to facilitate the loading and air transportation process, the sailing boat was disassembled into smaller parts – two hulls, two wings, beams, rudders and other equipment. During the packaging process, metal frames were used to reinforce the packing to ensure that there would be no damage to the individual components during the transportation process.The packaged components were transported to the airport by truck, before travelling to Bermuda, with a stopover in Los Angeles, USA for the aircraft to refuel. skycargo.theemiratesgroup.comlast_img read more

Facebook to train AI systems using police firearms training videos

first_img Published: September 17, 2019 5:12 PM EDT Do you see a typo or an error? Let us know. (CBS/AP) Facebook to train AI systems using police firearms training videos Facebook takes down suspicious accounts linked to Russia Author: CBS/APWriter:WINK News Facebook will work with law enforcement organizations to train its artificial intelligence systems to recognize videos of violent events, the company said Tuesday. The social media giant’s AI systems were unable to detect live-streamed video of a mass shooting at a mosque in Christchurch, New Zealand.The effort will use body-cam footage of firearms training provided by U.S. and U.K. government and law enforcement agencies. The aim is to develop systems that can automatically detect first-person violent events without also flagging similar footage from movies and video games.The AI training is part of a broader effort to crack down on extremism on Facebook’s platforms. The company has been working to crack down on extremist material on its service, so far with mixed success. In March, it expanded its definition of prohibited content to ban U.S. white nationalist and white separatist material as well as that from international terrorist groups. It says it has banned 200 white supremacist organizations and 26 million pieces of content related to global terrorist groups like ISIS and al Qaeda.Extremist videos are just one item in a long list of troubles Facebook faces. It was fined $5 billion by U.S. regulators over its privacy practices. A group of state attorneys general has launched its own antitrust investigation into Facebook. And it is also part of broader investigations into “big tech” by Congress and the U.S. Justice Department.More regulation might be needed to deal with the problem of extremist material, said Dipayan Ghosh, a former Facebook employee and White House tech policy adviser who is currently a Harvard fellow.“Content takedowns will always be highly contentious because of the platforms’ core business model to maximize engagement,” Ghosh told the Associated Press. “And if the companies become too aggressive in their takedowns, then the other side — including propagators of hate speech — will cry out.” Recommended Selling your old stuff on these sites could get you a little more cash SHARElast_img read more

Budget 2020: ‘No end to austerity’ responds Chancery Lane

first_imgSolicitors today described as ‘a drop in the ocean’ the boost for criminal justice promised in Rishi Sunak’s first budget today – and expressed concern at several of the chancellor’s other announcements. ‘Austerity is not ending in the justice sector,’ Law Society president Simon Davis warned, ‘and while £23m has been made available for the “wider justice system” including a £5m trial of specialist courts for domestic abuse cases, £15m to improve the government’s offer to victims and £3m for the Royal Commission on Criminal Justice process, it is a drop in the ocean and does not come close to the hundreds of millions cut from legal aid.’On the economic crime levy to be introduced following a consultation this spring, Davis said: ‘Solicitors play an important role in the battle against money laundering and the Law Society – as the named supervisory body – shares the government’s objectives in having a robust regime in place. Our sector already devotes substantial resources to fighting financial crime. Now plans for a levy, to be paid by firms subject to the Money Laundering Regulations, have been announced I would urge ministers to ensure that any plans are evidence based, and do not inadvertently distract resources from the fight against economic crime.’Specialist solicitors warned that the levy, proposed for organisations falling under current money laundering regulations, could amount to a new burden on the profession.Christopher David, counsel in international firm WilmerHale’s UK white collar defence and investigations practice, said: ‘The UK regulated sector already faces one of the most onerous anti-money laundering regimes in the world and this additional levy will undoubtedly be a further burden. The government must be careful to ensure that this is not just another tax on the financial services sector and law firms, the proceeds of which are distributed in an opaque and unfocused manner.’Alan Milford, criminal litigation partner at London firm Kingsley Napley, said: ‘The government will shortly consult on a levy to invest in the fight against money laundering and economic crime. Earlier reports suggested the aim is to boost funding of technology and investigators which is all very well, but if correct, addresses only one piece of the puzzle. The government needs also to ensure investment in extra prosecutors and a proper functioning court service to deal with money laundering and fraud cases effectively. Only with investment across the system will the authorities really be able to boast about a significant ramping up of the war on dirty money and financial crime.’last_img read more

CP share buyback follows Q4 successes

first_imgCANADA: Canadian Pacific has completed its second share repurchase programme, the railway confirmed on February 8.CP had announced on December 11 its intention to buy back up to 755 000 common shares from two third-party sellers under two consecutive programmes to be completed by May 14. The first completed on January 23 saw CP buy back 134 000 shares for a total of C$29·5m, while the second covered 621 000 shares with an aggregate value of C$135·4m.Thanks to its ‘best ever’ fourth quarter results, including an operating ratio of 56·1, CP finished 2017 with a record low for the year of 58·2, an improvement of 40 basis points. Reporting its annual results on January 18, the railway said total revenues had increased by 5% to C$6·55bn from C$6·23bn in 2016.According to President & CEO Keith Creel, ‘the fourth quarter was a record by almost every measure and should be celebrated by the men and women in the CP family who work hard every day to deliver for our customers and shareholders. 2017 was a positive year where we continued to build the foundation for sustainable long-term growth’. Creel believed that CP had ‘built momentum’ in 2017, ‘thanks to our strategic approach to growth combined with our continued focus on operational excellence’. This had left the railway ‘well positioned to start 2018’, he added. ‘We look forward to delivering another year of record results in a safe and disciplined manner’.Creel said the railway’s 2018 plan would ‘balance strategic growth with continued productivity improvement’. The capital investment programme includes 350 km of new rail, another 225 km of rerailing, and 1·2 million sleepers. CP plans to replace 150 turnouts and eliminate 23 000 rail joints. In terms of structures, the railway expects to take forward 70 bridge projects as well as replacing or rebuilding 170 culverts. It will also continue to invest in the rollout of PTC on its US routes.last_img read more

Nearly 70 prisoners flee in second DRC jail break

first_imgFILE PHOTO FILE PHOTODozens of prisoners escaped from a jail in Democratic Republic of Congo early on Friday, less than 48 hours after rebels attacked Kinshasa’s main prison, freeing their leader and 50 others.“Among the 74 prisoners housed in the dilapidated prison in Kasangulu, 68 escaped,” local lawmaker Jean-Claude Vuemba told AFP, saying the breakout occurred at around 01:00.The town lies about 40km southwest of the capital Kinshasa in the Kongo Central province.Ten of the escaped prisoners were quickly “recaptured,” said Vuemba who criticised the inmates’ living conditions as deplorable.A local human rights activist who visited the prison on Friday said she had seen only four people there, two of them women.It was not immediately clear how the prisoners escaped, with police saying investigators had been dispatched from Kinshasa.The incident occurred just two days after rebels from an outlawed political-religious group attacked Kinshasa’s central prison.The pre-dawn attack was carried out by followers of Bundu Dia Kongo (BDK), a secessionist rebel group that rejects Kinshasa’s authority and wants to set up a parallel state in the west of the country.Government sources said at least eight people died during exchanges of gunfire in the assault to free Ne Muanda Nsemi, an MP who is the spiritual leader of the BDK – a group based in Kongo Central.Nsemi was arrested in early March following a violent two-week siege of his home. The government has blamed his followers for a string of violent attacks since the start of the year.By Wednesday evening, more than 4 000 of the 8 000 prisoners held in Makala prison were still missing, while 86 escapees had been returned, prisoner sources said.There was no immediate suggestion the two jail breaks were related.last_img read more