U.S. tariffs on Chinese solar panels to be contested
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U.S. tariffs on Chinese solar panels to be contested

Saturday, October 3, 2009

The United States continues to implement new trade barriers; the most recent tariffs emerged on Wednesday, targeting solar panels imported from China.

The new tariff is a result of a query submitted in December 2008 by GES USA, an American solar company. The resultant inquiry sought to clarify tariffs levied on solar panels imported from China, imports which, for nearly two decades, were considered a duty-free commodity.

In early January, U.S. Customs officials reportedly informed the company that the solar panels contained electronic devices that place the panels in the electric generator import category which is subject to a 2.5% import tariff. Specifically, the ruling cited the presence of diodes on the solar panels as evidence of electric generation and hence they must be treated as an electric generator. Small solar panels already incur a 3.9% tariff. The January decision was made by a U.S. trade specialist whose rulings can be overturned.

The tariffs will be levied on imported panels that provide electricity for all uses. Additionally, tariffs will be collected dating from the beginning of 2009. The Solar Energy Industries Association estimates that the accumulated tariffs from this year may total more than US$ 70 million. This week’s tariff revelation caught many industry leaders off-guard and yesterday the Solar Industries Association moved to block the tariff. The Association president, Rhone Resch, stated “… We’re taking it [the tariff] very seriously and we will be responding. … The industry is in the process of preparing a challenge”. The Association intends to file their appeal with senior U.S. Customs officials who have the option to overrule the decision to implement the tariff. However, if the officials do not revoke the tariff, then the case must go before the U.S. Court of International Trade.

The U.S. amount spent on imported solar panels roughly matches the income from exported panels; US$ 605 million imported versus US$ 555 million exported, according to the Commerce Department figures on the first seven months of this year. Major solar panel importers have already begun to move their operations to the U.S.

Feng Shui Garden Tips And Tricks

Submitted by: James Brickman

In this article, we will list a number of feng shui garden tips that can help you turn your garden into a powerful generator of positive Chi energy.

We hope that you find our advice useful; however, the most important tip is to listen to your intuition.

A special feature of a classical feng shui garden is having a pond, pool, or fountain in the center of it. Any body of water (natural or artificial) will increase the good Chi energy in the garden. The most crucial point is to keep the water clean, clear, and fresh. Stagnant water attracts the destructive Sha instead of the positive Chi energy. The traditional feng shui says that the optimum home location is on a small hill next to a splashing brook or small river, which brings Chi into the house.

Try to ensure that the garden s view from the windows is attractive in every season. The garden should be set up to be welcoming for you and your guests. Try to avoid having tools, bikes, or garbage containers in your garden, as they disrupt the harmony. It is advisable to have a bench next to your entrance door it s practical and attractive. A harmonious space in front of your house will promote the Chi, and help it flow from your garden into your home.

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A feng shui garden can have beds with herbs and shrubs with berries. Try to give time and thought to the choice of trees. Everyone can feel affection to a particular tree, which will make you feel happy. Sitting on a bench under your favorite tree will recharge you.

A garden should be surrounded by a protective (limiting) area. Its functions are to create a beautiful landscape scene, mark the garden s boundaries, and hide it from prying eyes. It can be a high wall or a small hedge – the choice is yours.

We perceive the nature in a garden with every sense: the color of flowers, the aromas of herbs, and the rustle of leaves. Each of these can bring joy. Let your garden be dominated by flowers, trees, herbs, and plants that you personally like and enjoy.

The garden s light is also very important any type of light enhances the Chi energy flow. Consider using artificial lighting, especially for the pathways, in the dark. The light should not be too weak, but it probably should not turn night into day either. You can use practical lighting, as well as decorative lights to underline the magical beauty of your pond or plants.

Handmade works of art can boost the appeal of a garden and emphasize its individuality.

Listen to your intuition and you will find the best solution for your garden. The boosted Chi energy will boost the sense of harmony and wellbeing in your feng shui garden.

Feng-shui is a traditional Chinese teaching with a millennial history. This teaching explains how to live in harmony with nature. The roots of this doctrine go deep into Chinese culture and Taoism. The art of feng shui is to help people manage the flow of chi energy with maximum benefit.

About the Author: James Brickman runs http://www.fengshuicrazy.com which teaches the ancient art of feng shui. Please visit his website to learn more about

feng shui gardens

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IBM to launch software that works on Linux, Windows and Macintosh
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IBM to launch software that works on Linux, Windows and Macintosh

Monday, February 12, 2007

On Sunday the representatives of International Business Machines Inc. said that the company will launch its new desktop software system for businesses. IBM’s new product is called “Open Client Offering”. The company hopes that its product will put Macintosh or Linux software on a more equal footing with Windows.

The Open Client Offering software was developed by IBM in-house, as well as with partners like Novell Inc. and Red Hat Inc. It is to answer the questions regarding the cost-effectiveness of managing Linux or Apple desktop personal computers alongside Windows PCs.

IBM officials stated that Open Client Offering will allow enterprises to use the same software on Windows, Linux or Apple’s OS X. It will be unnecessary for companies using Open Client to pay Microsoft for licenses for operations because these will no longer rely on Windows-based software.

Scott Handy, IBM’s vice president of Linux and open source, stated that the company worked together with the open source community and in the end found a way to develop a software that is able to function regardless of the operating system.

To create an alternative to Microsoft, IBM is going to offer Open Document Format software that the company developed for word processing, spreadsheets or presentations, instant messaging and blog tools and Internet Explorer’s long time rival – Firefox Web browser.

The software developers at IBM believe that the usage of Open Client Offering can cut the cost of managing applications as well as maintenance and cost regarding customer support on company networks that require other software rather than Windows.

PSA Peugeot Citroen, being the second largest car manufacturer, signed a multi-year agreement with Novell, which is the provider of Linux software, to run Linux on its 20,000 desktop PCs. In addition Linux will be installed on 2,500 server computers.

RedMonk’s analyst, Stephen O’Grady, said that today there is a strong appetite for Windows alternatives. However, he said, this doesn’t mean that the alternatives are to displace Windows wholesales. O’Grady outlined that no one is going to significantly damage the desktop dominance of Microsoft.

PM John Howard’s nuclear push causes alarm
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PM John Howard’s nuclear push causes alarm

Monday, May 22, 2006

Wikinews Australia has in-depth coverage of this issue: Australian nuclear debate

Australian Prime Minister John Howard has announced he wants a “full-scale nuclear debate”, and three of his senior federal government frontbenchers – Foreign Minister Alexander Downer, Resources Minister, Ian Macfarlane, and Environment Minister Ian Campbell – have all suggested Australia, which has around 40 per cent of the world’s known uranium reserves, should consider enriching uranium – a step in processing that would allow it to be used as reactor fuel as well as for nuclear weapons.

However there is strong opposition for nuclear power in the Australian community. The Australian Greens have rejected the Prime Minister’s assumption that nuclear power might be ‘desirable’ for Australia. The Greens say they challenge Mr Howard to show “true leadership on climate change and nuclear non-proliferation.

Greens climate change and energy spokesperson Senator Christine Milne said Mr Howard was “playing politics” by floating the idea and testing public opinion before developing a government position.

“Instead of pandering to US President George Bush and UK Prime Minister Tony Blair – the two most unpopular leaders in the world today – Prime Minister Howard should demonstrate real leadership and put some authenticity into the government’s response to climate change and terrorism,” Senator Milne said. “Nuclear power and nuclear proliferation are a threat to both.”

Senator Milne challenged advocates of nuclear power to explain what they will to do about nuclear waste, how large a public subsidy they are prepared to pay to prop up nuclear power, and why the Sustainable Development Commission was wrong when it recommended last month against expanding nuclear power in Britain.

“Australians have already had to subsidise uranium mining companies to clean up after mines have closed, while last week’s Budget papers revealed that ANSTO can’t estimate the cost of decommissioning the Lucas Heights nuclear reactor,” Senator Milne said. “When will advocates of nuclear power admit that it is too slow, too expensive and too dangerous to be a solution to climate change? Nor is there any safe way to dispose of the waste. It is not even safe to transport, a concern supported by the head of the International Energy Agency…” said Senator Milne in a media release.

“Instead of turning to nuclear power, Australia should ratify the Kyoto Protocol, invest in renewable energy, adopt a national energy efficiency target and improve public transport.

“Several studies examining options to achieve deep cuts in Australian greenhouse emissions all show this goal can be achieved, cost effectively, without resorting to nuclear power,” said Senator Milne in a media release.

Greens leader Bob Brown says the Prime Minister is sending a message of approval for Indonesia to become a nuclear power. “Australia and our region are essentially nuclear-free. Mr Howard is abandoning that security to grab uranium profits and facilitate an Australian role in nuclear enrichment,” Senator Brown said. “This robs Australia of its moral strength to argue against Indonesia resurrecting the Soeharto plan for 12 nuclear reactors and to advance its interest in Russian-built floating nuclear power stations.”

“This will make our region much less secure for the next generation of Australians,” Senator Brown said. “John Howard has talked up regional terrorism. Now he is promoting nuclear power proliferation in our neighbourhood. At best his logic is faulty, at worst he is taking Australia into a future unnecessarily menaced by the nuclear threat,” Senator Brown said.

Labor MP Kelvin Thomson says John Howard’s push towards nuclear power generation could heighten the risk of a terrorist attack. “The problem with nuclear power is that more of it that is around, the easier it is for terrorists to get access to it and I’m not satisfied that in this day and age we can be absolutely certain that terrorists can’t access it,” Mr Thomson said.

Mr Thompson said the Government should be focussing its interest on “much safer and environmentally-friendly” abundant renewable energy sources, such as wind and solar power. Mr Thomson said Australia was a potential world-leader in solar power. “Surely you exhaust all the other alternatives first before you say let’s go down the nuclear road,” he said.

“The problem with nuclear power is that more of it that is around, the easier it is for terrorists to get access to it,” he said. “I’m not satisfied that in this day and age you can be absolutely certain that terrorists can’t access it.”

Union leader Bill Shorten, a federal Labor candidate at the next election, believes the issue is unpopular with the electorate. A survey in 2005 found 47 percent of Australians supported nuclear power and 40 percent opposed it.

Professor Frank Muller from the University of New South Wales, said the framework to manage nuclear power needs to be put in place first. He says it could take decades before a nuclear power plant could operate. “So it actually takes even longer to provide a greenhouse benefit than it does to build a power plant,” he said. Professor Muller says nuclear power stations are expensive to build, and safety is a major issue.

Opposition environment spokesman Anthony Albanese said: “John Howard’s nuclear fantasy is Australia’s nightmare,” Mr Albanese told reporters. “Intractable problems with nuclear energy when it comes to economic costs, safety, disposal of waste and contribution to nuclear proliferation remain up to some 50 years.”

Mr Albanese said that if Mr Howard was serious about nuclear power he should say where a nuclear power plant would be built, and where the waste it produced would be stored. “If he’s so confident that nuclear energy is safe… I’m sure he’ll have coalition MPs volunteering to have a nuclear reactor in their electorate and to store their waste in the electorate,” he said.

Mr Albanese said the current Labor policy remained opposed to nuclear energy in Australia.

United States begins testing equipment for demolition of a major VX nerve gas stockpile
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United States begins testing equipment for demolition of a major VX nerve gas stockpile

Saturday, May 7, 2005

Testing began on a chemical reactor at the Newport Chemical Depot near Terre Haute, Indiana on Friday morning. If successful, the reactor will be put to use destroying the large VX nerve gas stockpiles stored at the facility over the course of the next two years. After the disposal project experienced several delays, the facility announced it would begin pumping VX into a completed disposal unit for testing. The unit consists of a chemical reactor in which the VX will be mixed with water and sodium hydroxide, heated to 194°F while mixed with paddles. The resulting chemical, called hydrolysate, is chemically similar to commercial drain cleaners and has similar properties. If the test is successfully completed , the unit will continue processing the VX until the entire stockpile has been neutralized, a process projected to take two years. Administrators expect to complete testing on May 10, 2005.

According to the controversial plan, the finished waste product would be shipped to New Jersey for final reprocessing. The inert chemical would then be emptied into the Delaware River where natural attenuation would occur.

Residents near the proposed river disposal site in New Jersey oppose this idea. The contractor for the final component of this disposal would be the DuPont Corporation.

NCD is a bulk chemical storage and destruction facility in west central Indiana, thirty miles north of Terre Haute. Originally founded during World War II to produce RDX, a conventional explosive, it later became a site for chemical weapons manufacturing during the Cold War. It is now used to securely store and gradually neutralize part of the US stockpile of VX.

VX was manufactured by the U.S. in the 1950s and 60’s as a deterrent to possible Soviet Union use. It was never deployed, and the manufacture was halted in 1969 after an order signed by then-president Richard Nixon.

In 1999, the Army announced it awarded a disposal contract to Parsons Infrastructure & Technology, Inc., a business unit of Parsons Corporation. Some 220 civilian Parsons employees work at the facility, which is supervised by an Army officer reporting to the U.S. Army Chemical Materials Agency, and a board of civilian government overseers called the Indiana Citizens’ Advisory Commission, some of whose members are appointed by the state governor.

Security at the facility is controversial. A private security service, supplemented by a complement of Indiana National Guard soldiers, guarded the facility until April 14, 2005, when the soldiers were withdrawn. An Indianapolis television station has questioned security measures in some of its special reports.

Different Types Of Physical Therapist In Draper

byadmin

If you have ever been involved in an accident that produced injuries, then you know how beneficial a physical therapist can be. A physical therapist can help you regain your mobility and agility after an accident. The following are a few types of physical therapist in Draper.

Orthopedic Therapy

One of the most common types of physical Therapist in Draper is an orthopedic. This type of therapist helps to rehabilitate you after an accident or directly following a surgery. Orthopedic therapy focuses mainly on the joints and tendons of the body. Many athletes participate in orthopedic therapy after they have experienced injuries on the field. The therapists will use techniques such as massages and flexibility exercise in order to rehabilitate a patient.

Geriatric Physical Therapy

This type of therapy is used on senior citizens who may be frail or fragile following an accident. Seniors suffering with osteoporosis will often visit a geriatric therapist for relief with the pain that accompanies this debilitating disease. Other forms of arthritis are also treated by these types of therapist and many patients have shown great improvement in their overall mobility after a long period of treatment. Generally, geriatric therapy is done on an outpatient basis, but some hospitals may provide it following a surgery.

Neurological Therapy

This type of therapy is used for patients who have suffered strokes or other types of brain injuries. Neurological therapy focuses on regaining mobility and overall limb functions in victims of brain diseases. In most cases this type of therapy will be on an outpatient basis, but in some severe cases in home therapy is required. In some studies, great success has been shown especially in patients with Alzheimers or MS. Many doctors recommend this type of therapy to brain injury patients in order for them to get some motor skills back.

If you find yourself in need of physical therapy, then look no further than the professionals at physicla therapy and sports medicine. They specialize in many types of physical therapy and can help you get regain mobility after an accident. You can call them or visit their website at www.peakptdraper.com for more information on the services that they can offer you.

Wikinews interviews Goronwy Price about the upcoming by-election in the Bradfield electorate of the Australian parliament
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Wikinews interviews Goronwy Price about the upcoming by-election in the Bradfield electorate of the Australian parliament

Thursday, December 3, 2009

With two federal by-elections coming up in Australia, many minor parties and independents will be looking to gain a seat in the House of Representatives. Goronwy Price is a candidate representing the Environmentalists for Nuclear Energy party.

Mr Price is an environmentalist, adventurer and businessman from the Sydney suburb of Cremorne.

“In 1975 I founded the adventure travel company World Expeditions and built it to be the world’s largest adventure organisation. I am currently Managing Director of Learningportal.com a successful software company I founded in 1997. We export software around the world.,” Mr Price said.

Wikinews reporter Patrick Gillett held an exclusive email interview with Mr Price, candidate for the Division of Bradfield.

Cleveland, Ohio clinic performs US’s first face transplant
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Cleveland, Ohio clinic performs US’s first face transplant

Thursday, December 18, 2008

A team of eight transplant surgeons in Cleveland Clinic in Ohio, USA, led by reconstructive surgeon Dr. Maria Siemionow, age 58, have successfully performed the first almost total face transplant in the US, and the fourth globally, on a woman so horribly disfigured due to trauma, that cost her an eye. Two weeks ago Dr. Siemionow, in a 23-hour marathon surgery, replaced 80 percent of her face, by transplanting or grafting bone, nerve, blood vessels, muscles and skin harvested from a female donor’s cadaver.

The Clinic surgeons, in Wednesday’s news conference, described the details of the transplant but upon request, the team did not publish her name, age and cause of injury nor the donor’s identity. The patient’s family desired the reason for her transplant to remain confidential. The Los Angeles Times reported that the patient “had no upper jaw, nose, cheeks or lower eyelids and was unable to eat, talk, smile, smell or breathe on her own.” The clinic’s dermatology and plastic surgery chair, Francis Papay, described the nine hours phase of the procedure: “We transferred the skin, all the facial muscles in the upper face and mid-face, the upper lip, all of the nose, most of the sinuses around the nose, the upper jaw including the teeth, the facial nerve.” Thereafter, another team spent three hours sewing the woman’s blood vessels to that of the donor’s face to restore blood circulation, making the graft a success.

The New York Times reported that “three partial face transplants have been performed since 2005, two in France and one in China, all using facial tissue from a dead donor with permission from their families.” “Only the forehead, upper eyelids, lower lip, lower teeth and jaw are hers, the rest of her face comes from a cadaver; she could not eat on her own or breathe without a hole in her windpipe. About 77 square inches of tissue were transplanted from the donor,” it further described the details of the medical marvel. The patient, however, must take lifetime immunosuppressive drugs, also called antirejection drugs, which do not guarantee success. The transplant team said that in case of failure, it would replace the part with a skin graft taken from her own body.

Dr. Bohdan Pomahac, a Brigham and Women’s Hospital surgeon praised the recent medical development. “There are patients who can benefit tremendously from this. It’s great that it happened,” he said.

Leading bioethicist Arthur Caplan of the University of Pennsylvania withheld judgment on the Cleveland transplant amid grave concerns on the post-operation results. “The biggest ethical problem is dealing with failure — if your face rejects. It would be a living hell. If your face is falling off and you can’t eat and you can’t breathe and you’re suffering in a terrible manner that can’t be reversed, you need to put on the table assistance in dying. There are patients who can benefit tremendously from this. It’s great that it happened,” he said.

Dr Alex Clarke, of the Royal Free Hospital had praised the Clinic for its contribution to medicine. “It is a real step forward for people who have severe disfigurement and this operation has been done by a team who have really prepared and worked towards this for a number of years. These transplants have proven that the technical difficulties can be overcome and psychologically the patients are doing well. They have all have reacted positively and have begun to do things they were not able to before. All the things people thought were barriers to this kind of operations have been overcome,” she said.

The first partial face transplant surgery on a living human was performed on Isabelle Dinoire on November 27 2005, when she was 38, by Professor Bernard Devauchelle, assisted by Professor Jean-Michel Dubernard in Amiens, France. Her Labrador dog mauled her in May 2005. A triangle of face tissue including the nose and mouth was taken from a brain-dead female donor and grafted onto the patient. Scientists elsewhere have performed scalp and ear transplants. However, the claim is the first for a mouth and nose transplant. Experts say the mouth and nose are the most difficult parts of the face to transplant.

In 2004, the same Cleveland Clinic, became the first institution to approve this surgery and test it on cadavers. In October 2006, surgeon Peter Butler at London‘s Royal Free Hospital in the UK was given permission by the NHS ethics board to carry out a full face transplant. His team will select four adult patients (children cannot be selected due to concerns over consent), with operations being carried out at six month intervals. In March 2008, the treatment of 30-year-old neurofibromatosis victim Pascal Coler of France ended after having received what his doctors call the worlds first successful full face transplant.

Ethical concerns, psychological impact, problems relating to immunosuppression and consequences of technical failure have prevented teams from performing face transplant operations in the past, even though it has been technically possible to carry out such procedures for years.

Mr Iain Hutchison, of Barts and the London Hospital, warned of several problems with face transplants, such as blood vessels in the donated tissue clotting and immunosuppressants failing or increasing the patient’s risk of cancer. He also pointed out ethical issues with the fact that the procedure requires a “beating heart donor”. The transplant is carried out while the donor is brain dead, but still alive by use of a ventilator.

According to Stephen Wigmore, chair of British Transplantation Society’s ethics committee, it is unknown to what extent facial expressions will function in the long term. He said that it is not certain whether a patient could be left worse off in the case of a face transplant failing.

Mr Michael Earley, a member of the Royal College of Surgeon‘s facial transplantation working party, commented that if successful, the transplant would be “a major breakthrough in facial reconstruction” and “a major step forward for the facially disfigured.”

In Wednesday’s conference, Siemionow said “we know that there are so many patients there in their homes where they are hiding from society because they are afraid to walk to the grocery stores, they are afraid to go the the street.” “Our patient was called names and was humiliated. We very much hope that for this very special group of patients there is a hope that someday they will be able to go comfortably from their houses and enjoy the things we take for granted,” she added.

In response to the medical breakthrough, a British medical group led by Royal Free Hospital’s lead surgeon Dr Peter Butler, said they will finish the world’s first full face transplant within a year. “We hope to make an announcement about a full-face operation in the next 12 months. This latest operation shows how facial transplantation can help a particular group of the most severely facially injured people. These are people who would otherwise live a terrible twilight life, shut away from public gaze,” he said.

Egypt protests: Army say they will not use force on demonstrators as Mubarak announces cabinet
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Egypt protests: Army say they will not use force on demonstrators as Mubarak announces cabinet

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

The president of Egypt has suffered a “devastating blow” after the country’s army announced they would not use force against their own people, who continue to protest against the government tonight. The news came hours after six journalists who reported on the protests were released from custody.

Hosni Mubarak yesterday announced a new cabinet, which does not include several figures who protesters largely do not approve of. Analysts have, however, suggested little had changed within the government; many positions, they say, are filled with military figures.

To the great people of Egypt, your armed forces, acknowledging the legitimate rights of the people … have not and will not use force against the Egyptian people.

In a statement broadcast on state media in Egypt, the army said: “To the great people of Egypt, your armed forces, acknowledging the legitimate rights of the people … have not and will not use force against the Egyptian people.” A BBC correspondent in Cairo said the announcement meant it “now seems increasingly likely that the 30-year rule of Mr Mubarak is drawing to a close.”

“The presence of the army in the streets is for your sake and to ensure your safety and wellbeing. The armed forces will not resort to use of force against our great people,” the statement added. “Your armed forces, who are aware of the legitimacy of your demands and are keen to assume their responsibility in protecting the nation and the citizens, affirms that freedom of expression through peaceful means is guaranteed to everybody.”

Earlier today, six journalists from the independent news network Al-Jazeera were released from custody after being detained by police. The U.S. State Department criticized the arrests; equipment was reportedly confiscated from the journalists.

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Egyptian officials yesterday ordered the satellite channel to stop broadcasting in the country. Al-Jazeera said they were “appalled” by the government’s decision to close its Egyptian offices, which they described as the “latest attack by the Egyptian regime to strike at its freedom to report independently on the unprecedented events in Egypt.”

In a statement, the news agency added: “Al-Jazeera sees this as an act designed to stifle and repress the freedom of reporting by the network and its journalists. In this time of deep turmoil and unrest in Egyptian society it is imperative that voices from all sides be heard; the closing of our bureau by the Egyptian government is aimed at censoring and silencing the voices of the Egyptian people.”

On Friday, Wikinews reported the government had shut off practically all Internet traffic both out of and into the nation, as well as disrupting cellphone usage. A spokesperson for the social networking website Facebook said “limiting Internet access for millions of people is a matter of concern for the global community.”

A reported 50,000 campaigners, who are demanding the long-time leader step down and complaining of poverty, corruption, and oppression, filled Tahrir Square in Cairo today, chanting “We will stay until the coward leaves.” It is thought 100 people have so far died in the demonstrations. Today there have been protests in Suez, Mansoura, Damanhour, and Alexandria.

Speaking to news media in the area, many protesters said the new cabinet did little to quell their anger. “We want a complete change of government, with a civilian authority,” one said. Another added: “This is not a new government. This is the same regime—this is the same bluff. [Mubarak] has been bluffing us for 30 years.”

In Tahrir Square today, protesters played music as strings of barbed wire and army tanks stood nearby. Demonstrators scaled light poles, hanging Egyptian flags and calling for an end to Mubarak’s rule. “One poster featured Mubarak’s face plastered with a Hitler mustache, a sign of the deep resentment toward the 82-year-old leader they blame for widespread poverty, inflation and official indifference and brutality during his 30 years in power,” one journalist in the square reported this evening.

Gas tanks explode at facility in Texas, US
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Gas tanks explode at facility in Texas, US

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Three people were hospitalized with injuries after a series of explosions at Southwest Industrial Gases, Inc., a gas facility in Dallas, Texas. None of their injuries are considered life-threatening.

Tanks of oxygen, helium and acetylene began to explode after a connector used to join acetylene tanks during the filling process malfunctioned. The explosions sent flaming debris into the air and onto buildings and expressways. Black smoke that could be seen for miles billowed from the facility. The problem began around 9:30 a.m CDT (UTC-5) at a loading dock, according to Dallas Fire Department Lt. Joel Lavender, and then spread to a trailer housing some 100,000 cubic feet (approximately 28,300 cubic metres) of gas.

Authorities evacuated an area that was one-half of a mile (approximately 800 m) wide. Portions of Interstate 35 and Interstate 30 were shut down. Flaming debris ignited small grass fires next to the roads. Tanks were reported to have landed as far away as four blocks.

Officials for the Environmental Protection Agency, as well as local and state environmental officials, have deemed air quality levels acceptable following the blast. Hazardous material crews have blocked water used in the fire from entering the Dallas storm drains.

“I just advised my teams to get out,” said Eddy Parker of Airgas which operates right next to Southwest Industrial. “I didn’t really see anything other than the smoke. Then we turned and ran and just kept hearing explosions.”

“Given the fact that there haven’t been any fatalities, it seems like our fire department and emergency responders did a great job. But we need to let the fire department look at why this is occurring there in that area,” said City Councilman Steve Salazar.

Two of the injured men, Randal Bibb, 52, and Daniel McMurry, 56, were taken to Parkland Memorial Hospital to be treated for upper-body burns. The third, an unidentified truck-driver, was treated and released at Methodist Dallas Medical Center. He hurt his back when he jumped from the cab of his truck.

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