Thursday, 20 November 2008

Newspapers : 20th November

First carbon auction raises £54 million. Louise Gray, The Telegraph (en)
" ... Under the European emissions trading scheme (EU ETS), energy intensive industries - that are responsible for half the region's emissions - are given an allowance for the amount of carbon dioxide they produce ...
... In order to claw back some of the money and to better control the price of carbon so that industry is forced to cut emissions, the UK Government has put seven per cent – or four million of these allowances – in an open auction. The hour-long auction sold the allowances to traders and companies at £13.60 each for £54 million ... "

Scottish Parliament must do the math before its next ID cards crisis. Alan Cochrane, The Telegraph (en)

Recovery cannot begin until house prices bottom out. Adrian Hamilton, The Independent (en)
" ... How can he get away with it? While David Cameron laboriously carries out a U-turn on taxes, the Prime Minister positively somersaults over every position he has ever held and yet seems to get only stronger in the opinion polls. He has abandoned all his golden rules, embraced unfunded tax cuts as the panacea for our recessionary woes and declared the whole thing a global problem in which we are but guiltless victims. Meanwhile, poor old Cameron has to do his manoeuvres in full public glare before an audience who never saw the point of his much-vaunted commitment to keeping Labour's spending plans in the first place, and are just as unmoved by his reversal of it now ...
... But Brown's greatest deception has been to claim this is all a world problem, not a British one – and worse, to keep claiming we are in a better position to manage it than anyone else. This is simply not true ...
... Just as in the US, but unlike most other countries, it will not really be until the fall in house prices reaches bottom that you can hope to start proper recovery ..."

Genetic code of woolly mammoth mapped-out . Mark Henderson, The Times (en)
" ... “By deciphering this genome we could, in theory, generate data that one day may help other researchers to bring the woolly mammoth back to life by inserting the uniquely mammoth DNA sequences into the genome of the modern-day elephant,” said Stephan Schuster ...
... The results have shown that the mammoth differs from the African elephant by as little as 0.6 per cent, making the two species more closely related than are humans and chimpanzees. The Indian elephant is an even closer cousin of the mammoth, but the precise comparison cannot yet be done as its genome remains unmapped ...
... The research also suggests that woolly mammoths had very little genetic diversity, which would have made them vulnerable to extinction.
Professor Schuster said: “We discovered that individual woolly mammoths were so genetically similar to one another that they may have been especially susceptible to being wiped out by a disease, by a change in the climate, or by humans.” ..."

Sarkozy’s Fiscal Meeting Raises Diplomatic Hackles. Mark Landler, The NYT (en)
" ... President Nicolas Sarkozy of France left the summit meeting on the financial crisis here last weekend in a triumphal mood, declaring that it had tamed the animal spirits of American capitalism. Then he went home and announced that he would hold his own summit meeting in a few weeks in Paris — on the same topic ...Presidents Bush and Nicolas Sarkozy last week at a meeting on the economic crisis. That has raised hackles in diplomatic circles, not just because the meeting appears to compete with a planned gathering of 20 world leaders next April. Mr. Sarkozy’s aggressive statements have put American officials on edge, with some saying that he seemed determined to turn the global crisis into a referendum on the ills of untrammeled capitalism ...
... The common ground between Europe and the United States is greater than these public statements suggest. The United States has shown a willingness to accept regulation of a wide variety of institutions and markets, including credit default swaps — a form of bond insurance — and possibly private equity firms and hedge funds, that are not now regulated.
“People may have been surprised by the U.S. willingness to cooperate on issues,” said David H. McCormick, under secretary of the Treasury for international affairs.
Although the French favor a strong state role in the economy and are partial to regulatory agencies with cross-border authority, they did not propose such measures at the talks here. That was mainly because Britain and Germany had earlier resisted a supranational regulator ..."

France Dominates Europe’s Digital Library. Stephen Castle, The NYT (en)
" ... France has never been shy about promoting its culture, so few were surprised when it took a close interest in a new digital library intended to showcase Europe’s history, literature, arts and science ...
But when the new site, called Europeana, begins life on Thursday, more than half of its two million items will come from just one of the 27 countries in the European Union: France.
So comprehensive is France’s cultural dominance over this cyberspace outpost that other countries are having their own history written for them — in French, of course.
“I find the figures extraordinary,” said Viviane Reding, the European commissioner responsible for the project. “France has half the content — the collapse of the Berlin Wall is illustrated with a French TV documentary.” ...
... Europeana combines the digital resources of museums and libraries, and the information provided includes paintings, maps, videos and newspapers.
Material is free of copyright so it can be downloaded for blogs, research or schoolwork by anyone with an Internet connection ..."

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