GreenPalm continues to promote its certificates

first_imgSustainability in the palm oil industry is largely being driven by GreenPalm certificates – instead of physical sustainable palm oil, according to new figures from the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO).Its figures show that while certified sustainable palm oil production has surpassed 5 million tonnes, 2.65 million tonnes have been sold, and 70% of them traded via GreenPalm certificates, which businesses buy to off-set their purchases of palm oil from a range of sources.GreenPalm general manager Bob Norman said: “It may surprise many people to learn that most of sustainable palm oil being bought by businesses is through the book-and-claim route. But when we take into account the sheer complexities of obtaining a segregated sustainable supply of palm-based products, it’s easy to understand why many businesses are choosing this approach.”Norman said GreenPalm was an important tool in the drive to change the palm oil industry at source, instead of rewarding only those certified mills with a supply link to large corporations.GreenPalm was set up by oil company AAK and the RSPO in 2006. AAK UK recently announced that its full range of bakery fats and many other standard product lines will now contain RSPO-certified sustainable palm oil.>>GreenPalm trades millionth certificate>>Suppliers step up to meet palm oil challengelast_img read more

Paine wants senior batsmen to step up, fill void

first_img(REUTERS) – Australia will need a collective effort by their batsmen to fill the void left by the in-form Steve Smith who will miss the third Ashes Test against England, skipper Tim Paine said yesterday.Smith was ruled out of the encounter at Headingley, starting today, due to the effects of a concussion after being hit on the head by a bouncer from England fast bowler Jofra Archer in the first innings of the drawn second Test at Lord’s.The former skipper, who smashed 92 at Lord’s, has been in superb form making 144 and 142 in the opening Test at Edgbaston to help Australia seal a 251-run victory for a 1-0 lead in the five-match series. Asked how Australia planned to replace Smith in the third Test, Paine told reporters: “We do it as a team.”Concussion substitute Marnus Labuschagne filled in for Smith in the second innings and made a gritty 59 but Paine said it was up to all senior batsmen to ensure the pressure is not entirely on the 25-year-old.“There aren’t too many guys … that have averaged higher than Steve in Test cricket. Clearly they are huge shoes to fill and we don’t put all that pressure on Marnus,” Paine said. “Marnus comes in to play a role in our team and it’s up to everyone else, particularly our senior players, to make sure we give that little bit more output and cover Steve.”Paine said Australia expected more of the same fiery bowling from Barbados-born fast bowler Archer in the third Test. “We copped some short pitch bowling. The guys have got plans and we’ve prepared really well for it. It’s now about going out and executing,” Paine added.“When someone’s bowling fast and the crowd’s up and about it’s exciting. It’s great for Test cricket; the interest it’s sparked in the last … 10 days is great. We’re looking forward to the challenge again this week.”last_img read more

Gold from Starstuff, or a Fool’s Gold Scenario?

first_imgIf you tweak your scenario hard enough, it will give you anything you want.Did earth’s gold and heavy elements arrive by special delivery? Maybe an exploding star did it. The words maybe, might, and possibly give scientists endless opportunities to speculate.Whirling ‘Collapsar’ Stars Gave Universe Its Gold (Space.com). It’s not like astrophysicists had this figured out. We’ve been told for decades that all the elements heavier than iron were formed in supernovas. Was that all fake confidence?“It’s fascinating to me that, even this year, in which we celebrate the 150th anniversary of the periodic table, there is still so much we don’t quite understand about how the heavy elements of the universe are created,” study lead author Daniel Siegel, a theoretical physicist at the Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics in Waterloo, Canada, told Space.com. Those elements include “gold and platinum and the rare-earth elements in our portable electronics,” he said.Now that they have a new scenario with merging neutron stars (rare events called “collapsars”), we can trust them, right? Or is this job security for storytellers?“What we find in our study is that collapsars should produce at least 80% of the heavy-element content in our galaxy,” Siegel said. “Almost 20% would come from neutron-star mergers.”In the future, the researchers want to investigate how elements are created in other kinds of accretion disks, such as supernovas resulting from strongly magnetized stars, Siegel said. “We also want to explore the cosmological implications of our work — what our results suggest for the chemical evolution and assembly of galaxies,” he added.Collapsars as a major source of r-process elements (Nature). Here’s the paper on which the previous claim was based. Siegel, Barnes and Metzger share some awe-inspiring math and nuclear physics. Note: the “r-process” is a term in nuclear physics for neutron capture to build up elements.Here we report simulations that show that collapsar accretion disks yield sufficient r-process elements to explain observed abundances in the Universe. Although these supernovae are rarer than neutron-star mergers, the larger amount of material ejected per event compensates for the lower rate of occurrence. We calculate that collapsars may supply more than 80 per cent of the r-process content of the Universe.It’s a pretty audacious claim. But notice that this scenario is an auxiliary hypothesis for the Big Bang, which itself could only result in hydrogen, helium, and some lithium. A look through the paper shows numerous examples of guesswork, uncertainty, assumption, estimating from poor data, and jury-rigging of the scenario prior to the confident conclusion. Given enough billions of years and enough tweaking, anything is possible. But look at some of the assumptions! Only one neutron-star merger has been observed; yet they use that single instance to deduce a “per-galaxy rate” of these events! The calculated rate of collapsars is equally crude. Assumptions and crude calculations cannot yield conclusions less crude than they are themselves.Ancient Neutron-Star Crash Made Enough Gold and Uranium to Fill Earth’s Oceans (Space.com). “Enough gold, uranium and other heavy elements about equal in mass to all of Earth’s oceans likely came to the solar system from the collision of two neutron stars billions of years ago, a new study finds,” begins this scenario. Of course, they had to jury-rig where this collision occurred, and when it occurred, and how lucky we were that it didn’t sterilize the Earth.The researchers found a vast amount of heavy elements in the solar system likely originated from a single neutron-star collision that occurred about 80 million years before the birth of the solar system. Based on the amount of material from this merger that managed to make it here, they suggested this merger happened about 1,000 light-years from the cloud of gas and dust that eventually formed the solar system.They didn’t quite get around to addressing some troubling follow-up questions. (1) Why isn’t gold found equally on all the other objects of the solar system? (2) If Earth began as a molten mass, why didn’t all the heavy elements sink to the core? (3) Why is so much gold found at the Earth’s surface?The attitude of secular scientists is, “It exists; therefore it evolved.” Take gold and platinum. Empirical observation reveals these and other rare earth elements (see Evolution News) and precious metals available at the surface of the Earth, but they are not equally distributed through the solar system. If such elements had been found at Mars or Venus or on comets and asteroids, NASA would be on a gold rush! How did Earth become so blessed with useful and valuable elements? Nobody watched a collapsar send the gold here. You can’t reproduce a collapsar in the lab, much less a lucky neutron-star merger. The only way materialists can conclude anything is to tell stories, and throw in a little bit of science to give it an air of plausibility. As in biology, the usual answer is, “It evolved” (synonymous with “stuff happens”). A frequent Twitter critic of CEH falls back on one of his favorite excuses, ‘”At least scientists admit they don’t know everything and are trying to figure it out with the methods of science. Isn’t that better than trusting some holy book and saying ‘God did it’ by some kind of magic?” Let’s get this straight. Any sufficiently assumption-ridden, error-prone, unobservable, counter-intuitive, implausible, jury-rigged, theory-laden, anomaly-riddled materialistic just-so story is indistinguishable from Magic. The critic just has a personal preference for that kind of miracle over than intelligently-designed miracles. Divine action, however, has this going for it: necessary and sufficient causation. Plus, He told us what He did!Atheists have the free will to disbelieve all this. Just don’t let them call it science.(Visited 286 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

2016 ACC Tournament Bracket, Schedule, Analysis

first_imgMalcolm Brogdon brings the ball up the floor during ACC Tournament.GREENSBORO, NC – MARCH 16: Malcolm Brogdon #15 of the Virginia Cavaliers bring the ball up court against Tyler Thornton #3 of the Duke Blue Devils during the championship game of the 2014 Men’s ACC Basketball Tournament at Greensboro Coliseum on March 16, 2014 in Greensboro, North Carolina. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)The Madness is almost here! After Saturday’s regular season finale, the bracket for the ACC Tournament has officially been set. The event kicks off at noon on Tuesday, March 8, with 12-seed N.C. State vs. 13-seed Wake Forest. North Carolina claims the No. 1 seed, and will face the winner of Pittsburgh and Syracuse on Thursday, while Virginia is the No. 2 seed, and will take on the Clemson-Georgia Tech winner. The Tar Heels and Cavaliers are both in contention for No. 1 seeds in the NCAA Tournament. Ticket information is available here.Here is the full bracket:2016 acc tournament bracket Every ACC Tournament game will be available on either ESPN or ESPN2, as well as the ACC Network.Favorite: North Carolinaunc logoThe Tar Heels captured the ACC regular season title, beating Duke at Cameron Indoor Stadium on Saturday night. Roy Williams’ squad has a talented assemblage of frontcourt talent, led by ACC Player of the Year candidate Brice Johnson, who averages 16.8 points and 10.8 rebounds per game. He is joined by Kennedy Meeks and Isaiah Hicks, to make up one of the deepest forward rotations in the country. Marcus Paige leads the way for UNC’s guards. He’s taken a bit of a backseat this season, averaging just 12 points a game after scoring over 17 per game in 2013-14, and over 14 last season. He provides excellent leadership, and is a clutch performer. The Tar Heels haven’t been perfect this season, and have had some close calls in ACC play, but with their depth and talent, they are the definite favorite in this year’s tournament.Sleeper: DukedukeCalling Duke a “sleeper” is probably a tough sell, but this year’s edition of the Blue Devils is definitely not a vintage Mike Krzyzewski team. The team hit a real swoon at mid-season, and fellow out of the Top 25 altogether, but in recent weeks it has rebounded to become a very dangerous outfit. Guard Grayson Allen is the latest in a long line of classic Duke heels, and he backs it up with his play. He averages 21.5 points per game this season. Rangy freshman forward Brandon Ingram is a dynamic player, who is a likely Top 5 pick in this year’s NBA Draft. With the loss of Amile Jefferson for the season, the Blue Devils don’t have much depth, which is the team’s main issue. However, if Allen, Ingram, and the rest of the team gets hot, it can absolutely make a run in the post-season.last_img read more

Vale Royal Talks Resume Tomorrow

first_img The Vale Royal Talks – a mechanism for the two main political parties to have bipartisan dialogue on critical national issues will take place on Wednesday, April 4, 2018 at the UWI Regional Headquarters commencing at 10am. The items for discussion at the first meeting include national security, electoral re-verification and chairmanship of Parliamentary committees. Story Highlightscenter_img The Vale Royal Talks – a mechanism for the two main political parties to have bipartisan dialogue on critical national issues will take place on Wednesday, April 4, 2018 at the UWI Regional Headquarters commencing at 10am.The Jamaica Labour Party’s team will be led by Prime Minister Andrew Holness and will include General Secretary Horace Chang, Chairman Robert Montague, Minister of Justice, Delroy Chuck and Minister of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries Audley Shaw.The People’s National Party’s team will be led by Opposition Leader Dr. Peter Phillips and will include General Secretary Julian Robinson, Chairman Fitz Jackson, Leader of Opposition Business in the House, Phillip Paulwell and Leader of Opposition Business in the Senate, Donna Scott-Mottley.The items for discussion at the first meeting include national security, electoral re-verification and chairmanship of Parliamentary committees.As agreed by the political parties, all communication from the meetings will be done as joint statements. A joint-statement will be issued at the end of the bipartisan dialogue.The media will have an opportunity at 10am to take pictures of the proceedings.Horace ChangGeneral Secretary – Jamaica Labour PartyJulian RobinsonGeneral Secretary – People’s National Partylast_img read more

Win A Signed TShirt From Sophia Bush By Donating To Charity

first_imgDonate at least $25 to Sophia Bush’s Pencils of Promise fundraising campaign before midnight (EST) on 11/27, and you could win a signed T-Shirt.Mozilla Firefox is currently giving away $50,000 to the fundraiser who raises the most for their charity, and Sophia is on a mission to win.“I attended an impact trip to Guadalupana and what struck me immediately was just how high need the community is,” writes Sophia on her fundraising page. “And that’s where my Impossible came from. Could I raise the money to build a school? One three-room structure costs $30,000.“I volunteered to give my 30th birthday to PoP and we were able to build two new schools and make such an incredible impact for these children. I’m so in love with the work that PoP is doing that I want to help more.“Get involved however you can. Give up a $4 latte. Tell your parents you’ll do all the laundry for a week. Throw a bake sale. A lemonade stand. A car wash. Spread the word in your community. Your voice is the most powerful tool in the world. So shout it from the rooftops team!“Whatever it takes. Let’s win this challenge for Pencils of Promise!”To make a donation and be entered into the chance to win Sophia’s signed T-Shirt, click here.last_img read more

Kurt Coleman finding a sunny start in Philadelphia

The professional nature of the NFL means less player-bonding outside of the team than at the college level. “There’s grown men out here,” Coleman said. “They have separate lives outside of what they do at work. In college, you got guys you are going to stay with forever.” Coleman still talks regularly to many people at OSU. “We talked about (me entering the NFL) a little bit,” Hines said. “He just said, ‘Just stay focused and all of that will take care of itself and just keep playing fast.’” Coleman used the same advice to begin his career. “As long as you make the team, that’s really all that matters because what you do with your opportunities is really a reflection of yourself and your character,” Coleman said. Hard work on the field has led to some fun off of it. “I might have jumped the gun because before I made the team I bought a new car,” Coleman said. “A Cadillac Escalade.” With a new ride and a firm position on the team, Coleman is enjoying his situation. “I have been having a lot of fun out here, and it’s been a very good season so far,” he said. “It’s a fun team and a fun atmosphere and a fun city to be in.” Evege expects the Eagles to have fun with their new acquisition. “They got a heck of a ball player in Kurt,” he said. “And they definitely won’t be disappointed.” Despite being a three-year starter at Ohio State and a selection to the 2009 Big Ten All-Conference team, safety Kurt Coleman was not selected until the final round of the NFL draft. Before April’s draft, ESPN gave Coleman a grade of 40, which places him with a group of players described as “underdeveloped prospects that need extra time and coaching in order to compete for a roster spot in the NFL. NFL teams are looking for a ‘diamond in the rough’ with this type of prospect.” Knowing 243 players were selected before the Philadelphia Eagles picked Coleman gave him motivation. “I don’t really look at it like I got to prove people wrong because I know I’m going to prove myself right,” he said. “But yeah, I do have a chip on my shoulder because I feel like I was good enough to be drafted high.” Former teammates also feel he was under-appreciated. “I was a little surprised because I know the type of football player and person he is,” OSU defensive back Donnie Evege said. “I feel like the Philadelphia Eagles got a steal on him because he is definitely … first- or second-round material.” Talent aside, Coleman had to adapt to what comes with being a late selection. “I had a lot of confidence in myself that I was going to be able to come in and learn the system and perform well,” Coleman said. “As a late-round draft pick or a free agent, you have to do it fast and you have to do it often.” Coleman has not only earned a roster spot, but he is second on the Eagles depth chart at safety and one of the first off the bench in obvious passing situations. Friends in Columbus have taken notice. “I heard on special teams he is doing a great job and even getting in a little bit at safety,” OSU safety Jermale Hines said. In filling those two roles, Coleman has made 11 tackles in his young professional career. Despite his success on the field, Coleman had adjustments to make in other areas. “The thing that you do have to get adjusted to is being in the professional world, living a professional life and … going to work each and every day and doing your best,” he said. read more

Buckeyes lean on Buford early in rout of UTSA

CLEVELAND — Though the Buckeyes left Texas-San Antonio’s coach saying, “Wow,” what many thought would be a cupcake matchup got off to a slow start for the overall No. 1-seeded team. The Ohio State men’s basketball team (33-2) buried No. 16 seed UTSA, 75-46, in the second round of the NCAA Tournament on Friday, but for the first seven minutes of the game, only one Buckeye put points on the board. Junior guard William Buford matched UTSA (20-14) nearly shot for shot in the opening minutes, as the Roadrunners sank four of their first five shots, including one from beyond the arc. The 6-foot-5 Buckeye began with 3-for-4 shooting, including 1-of-1 from deep, accounting for OSU’s first seven points. “My teammates, they were giving me the ball and shots were open,” a soft-spoken Buford said following the game, “so I was just taking good shots and I was able to knock them down.” Freshman forward Jared Sullinger was the first of Buford’s teammates to score. With the Buckeyes trailing, 9-7, Sullinger made a game-tying layup 6:57 in. UTSA never regained the lead. The homelike atmosphere at the Quicken Loans Arena, just two hours north of Columbus, provided the Buckeyes with ample support throughout the game. Of the more than 20,000 who attended Friday’s game — the largest crowd ever to attend a college basketball game in Ohio — a vast majority were Buckeye fans. Each of OSU’s baskets was met with a roaring applause, while the Roadrunners received some audible boos throughout the contest. Freshman point guard Aaron Craft said the overwhelming crowd support made the team feel like it was playing at home in Columbus. Though Buford’s energy was all that kept the Buckeyes’ heads above water early, coach Thad Matta said the rest of the team stayed focused to come out with the win. That collective discipline paid off, as the Buckeye defense did not allow UTSA to return to enjoying the 80 percent shooting it did in the beginning. “We came out with a slow start,” Buford said, “but picked up our pace and clamped down on defense.” OSU held UTSA to 10-for-22 shooting, including only 1-of-8 from 3-point territory, in the first half. The Buckeyes entered halftime with a comfortable 37-21 lead behind 15 points from Buford, who finished the game with a team-high 18 points. “Will can do whatever he needs to do,” Craft said. “He’s definitely willing to take his shots, and he knocked them down.” The Roadrunners’ shooting success only diminished as the game wore on, and the Buckeyes’ 16-point halftime lead inflated to as large as 38 in the second half. OSU held UTSA to just 25.8 percent shooting in the second, at times more than doubling the Roadrunners’ score. “We wanted to send a message out today,” Buford said, “and let people know we’re here to take care of business.” UTSA coach Brooks Thompson heard that message loud and clear. “Wow,” he said. “They’re good.” Despite his team’s second-round thrashing, Matta said the Buckeyes don’t take anything for granted as they look toward their next matchup and a tougher road ahead in what many call the tournament’s most competitive region. “Every step you take in the NCAA Tournament forward,” he said, “you’re going to play a better basketball team.” The Buckeyes will move on to the tournament’s third round, in which they will face No. 8 seed George Mason (27-6) on Sunday. Minutes before the OSU-UTSA opening tip, the Patriots clawed back from a consistent second-half deficit to defeat No. 9 seed Villanova (21-12), 61-57. OSU forward David Lighty, who contributed eight points in the Buckeyes’ victory, said George Mason is a team that’s good enough to make it to Houston. “They’re no cupcake,” the fifth-year senior Buckeye said. “When you hear ‘George Mason,’ you hear about a team going to the Final Four.” The Buckeyes and Patriots will tip off at 5 p.m. Sunday at the Quicken Loans Arena. OSU has not won a national title since 1960, but Devin Gibson, who netted a game-high 24 points and was the only Roadrunner to post double-digit points Friday, said this could be its year. “I think they play how a championship team plays inside out,” the senior point guard said. “They passed the ball around and just found the open man and made shots — what a championship team does.” read more

Opinion No matter Ohio State vs Michigan allegiance all should support Austin

When Michigan’s next basketball recruiting class takes the court for the first time, Ohio State fans might have to second-guess their usual reaction because of one player with a hard-to-believe story.Two plane crashes in the span of eight years. The first, in 2003, took the lives of his mother, brother and sister. The second, in 2011, killed his father and stepmother and left him in a medically induced coma for nearly two months.Austin Hatch, who at the time was living in Fort Wayne, Ind., had committed to play basketball at the University of Michigan just 10 days earlier.Three years later, Hatch is back in the news, only this time, it was for all the right reasons.Now 19 and playing for Loyola High School of Los Angeles, Hatch returned to the basketball court last Wednesday and sank the first shot he attempted in a comeback story that would make anyone come close to tears.As if that was not enough, John Beilein, coach of the Michigan Wolverines, has said he will honor the scholarship that Hatch earned before the plane crash.What a class act.During a time where winning is everything, and every scholarship matters, Beilein is honoring a commitment made to a player who deserves to put on a jersey every single night.Too often in today’s day and age, the sports world is overrun by individuals who are in the news for solely negative reasons instead of those who deserve recognition.It’s a shame that Hatch has had to deal with a great amount of adversity at such a young age, but I know one thing is certain: he has handled it better than I ever would have.Call it a miracle if you will, but at the end of the day, Hatch has displayed perseverance that gives a whole new meaning to the word resilience.Ultimately, when Hatch steps onto the floor next season for the University of Michigan, I know I’ll be watching, cheering for him and Beilein to succeed, regardless of who they are playing.I hope you all will too. read more