Finance Debt – Body Saron Siki Sun, 19 Sep 2021 13:19:56 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Finance Debt – Body Saron Siki 32 32 PPP loans: why some government entrepreneurs are repaying the money Tue, 09 Mar 2021 10:57:14 +0000

About five million small businesses across the country rushed for government guaranteed loans this spring, fearing the coronavirus pandemic could destroy their businesses.

Today, many are returning money with interest, including government contractors who could face the loss of new business or be forced to cut rates on future work, if it is determined that they do not. did not need the money.

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BDCs reassure investors about coronavirus and recession fears Tue, 09 Mar 2021 10:57:14 +0000

NEW YORK, March 27 (LPC) – Business development companies (BDCs) seek reassurance to their investors as they face a double blow from the coronavirus pandemic and fears of a deep recession rock the United States. United.

BDCs are closed-end funds that trade on public exchanges. The funds invest in small and medium enterprises. Because of the added risk of funding smaller, less diversified businesses, BDCs offer yield-seeking investors the opportunity to earn above-average returns.

Some of the larger funds, including those managed by Ares Management, TPG and venture lender Hercules Capital, have issued letters to stakeholders saying that credit managers are watching their holdings and are prepared for the uncertain times ahead.

“We believe the current implications of Covid-19 will have a significant impact on the real global economy, and we, like many others, are executing contingency plans for this public health and economic event,” Joshua wrote. Easterly, President and CEO. of TPG’s BDC, TPG Specialty Lending, in a note to stakeholders.

Ares’ BDC, Ares Capital Corp, said it was “in constant dialogue” with its borrowers and owners as they “assessed each situation independently,” wrote Kipp deVeer, the fund’s managing director, in its correspondence to stakeholders. Meanwhile, Hercules has “maintained close communications” with vehicle portfolio companies to “proactively assess and manage potential risks” among their borrowers, according to the company statement.

Spokesmen for Ares, TPG and Hercules could not be reached for comment before press time.


Since the Small Business Credit Availability Act doubled the amount of leverage BDCs can assume in 2018, many funds have increased their leverage capacity.

But in a downturn scenario, this regulation, aimed at strengthening the profit power of BDCs, could also mean that the losses will hit these funds more severely.

“It’s comforting to see that BDC’s liabilities are very well established, but that they have more leverage than in 2007. And this higher level of debt can have an amplifying effect on loss rates,” said Ryan Lynch, analyst at KBW investment bank.

The average leverage of listed BDCs increased for the ninth consecutive quarter to reach a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.05, from a low of 0.73x in five years in the third quarter of 2017, data shows by Refinitiv LPC.

BDCs have borrowed US $ 6.4 billion in the past 14 months, and debt held by BDCs is, on average, due to mature in 2022, according to Fitch Ratings.


It is too early for some portfolio companies to assess the impact of the potential recession that could result from the pandemic. The sectors with obvious problems remain energy and travel and leisure, but this could expand.

“The main problem for companies will be liquidity,” said Robert Dodd, BDC analyst at investment bank Raymond James. “You’re going to have companies that are in a seemingly OK segment of the economy that have a significant problem because of their liquidity situation.”

BDCs only recently released their fourth quarter results through year-end, which showed an increase in non-accumulations or defaulting assets. There was a market-wide increase to 3.4% in the last three months of 2019, up from 3.2% at the end of the third quarter, according to data from Refinitiv LPC. For context, the four-year high of non-provisions was 4.6% in the first quarter of 2016 and the four-year low of 2.8% occurred in the second quarter of 2018.

In addition to non-accruals, income in kind, or when a lender defers an interest payment until the loan matures, is an important indicator of the health of a BDC’s portfolio, said Dodd. To cope with financial hardship, BDCs may carry a cash interest obligation into a PIK payment, a sign that the borrower may not have the funds to service their debt, before putting the borrower in a position of debt. non-accumulation. (Reporting by Andrew Hedlund and David Brooke; Editing by Michelle Sierra and Kristen Haunss)

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Inter Milan vs Atalanta: match preview Tue, 09 Mar 2021 10:57:13 +0000

Even with a performance that left a lot to be desired, Inter have always been able to continue riding midweek against Parma and score three more points on the board. But the Nerazzurri will not have such luxury on the 26th day. Antonio Conte’s side will face a fiery Atalanta at San Siro on Monday night in the Serie A flagship game.

Photo by Emilio Andreoli / Getty Images

Like Inter, Atalanta has a long winning streak (four games in a row). La Dea take fourth and final place in the UEFA Champions League; his 49-point loot is two ahead of AS Roma but tied with Juventus and just four behind AC Milan. Papu Gomez’s midseason exit hasn’t slowed the Bergamo squad, and the other attack pieces (of which there are plenty) available to Gian Piero Gasperini have intensified. Only Inter (62) have scored more than Atalanta’s total of 60 out of 15 scorers. Luis Muriel (15 goals, 6 assists) is in the lead for La Dea, with Duvan Zapata (9g, 6a) and Robin Gosens (9g, 4a), a rather remarkable record for a winger. Josep Illicic (5g, 6a) is world class in his time, but luckily for the rest of Serie A he has yet to find consistency.

Atalanta v Real Madrid - UEFA Champions League round of 16

Photo by Ricardo Nogueira / Eurasia Sport Images / Getty Images

As you would expect if you’ve seen a lot of Atalanta in recent seasons, his attacking prowess is second to none. This season is no different and La Dea leads Serie A in most attacking statistics. His first in shots created (676), is second in shots per game (16.24), third in percentage of shots on target (36%) and has the most hits in his attacking third and his penalty area. Inter’s strong defense have handled Atalanta well in recent years, only conceding twice in the last three outings and this game is usually the key to achieving victory.

Another side of Atalanta’s game is the high press. Atalanta are second in the league for pressures in the middle and in the final third, as they have also made the most tackles in those two areas. La Dea also made the most interceptions (299). Retaining the ball in the center of the park will be vital for Inter, and Conte could opt for a more optimistic player like Arturo Vidal instead of Christian Eriksen to fight the press. Cristian Romero, a center-back on loan from Juve, is particularly important for this setup. He leads Atalanta in both tackling and pressure in the defensive third and acts as an anchor when the press is broken. He and Lukaku seem destined to end up in multiple one-on-one scenarios, and Lukaku will need to show the same speed and finesse as against Lazio, Milan and Parma to find a way to get past the Argentina defender.

Parma Calcio v FC Internazionale - Serie A

Photo by Jonathan Moscrop / Getty Images

With Juve and Milan taking on Lazio and Hellas Verona respectively this weekend, Inter could very well start Monday night looking to extend their lead at the top of the table or instead needing to keep enough distance between his opponents. Either way, the results of this round of action will certainly give us a much clearer picture of the title race. Atalanta is one of the trickiest tests yet for the Nerazzurri, but that would make a victory all the more important.

Previous results

Three of the last four meetings have ended in draws, although Inter have the only Matchday 38 win of last season. The Nerazzurri also lead the all-time record 26W-18T-11L

Planned starting XI

Eleven predicted from Inter (3-5-2)

Atalante’s XI predicted (3-4-2-1)

Prediction: Inter Milan 2-2 Atalante

Goals certainly seem to be on the menu and I expect crazy ninety minutes from start to finish. Lukaku and Lautaro will each score one goal, but a brace from Duvan Zapata will nullify Inter’s pair of attackers. The Nerazzurri vs Nerazzurri derby will end in a tie for the second time this season.

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IFC finances Banco Alfa’s initiative to foster the clean mobility market in Brazil Tue, 09 Mar 2021 10:57:13 +0000

Press release IFC

São Paulo, December 22, 2020—IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, has approved the first transaction with a Brazilian financial institution to promote clean mobility. Banco Alfa de Investimento SA, the leading company of Conglomerado Financeiro Alfa, will receive funding of $ 265 million to compose its loan portfolio for the acquisition of vehicles with a higher level of sustainable consumption, such as flexible fuel vehicles, electric or hybrid. The investment will help strengthen the climate finance market, mitigate climate impact and support economic recovery in Brazil.

The first tranche of funding includes a loan of $ 100 million from its own account and the mobilization of other financial institutions for an amount of $ 65 million. The banks involved in this phase of the financing are Itaú BBA, Banco Santander SA and Banco de Occidente. The second tranche, an additional $ 100 million, is expected to be released in 2021.

The project is a synergy between the strategic objective of IFC to increase climate-related investments and Alfa Conglomerate, which intends to evolve its sustainable development strategy and participate in a relevant way in the financing of vehicles with low or no emissions. contaminants. IFC’s support to Alfa will ensure extended lending terms to retail customers through long-term funds, safeguarding jobs and stimulating economic growth.

“The partnership with IFC is materializing at a strategic time for Alfa. We review, develop and strengthen our sustainable development strategy and we recognize that climate stability is one of the major challenges of the 21st century. We are happy to contribute to the reduction of vehicle emissions in Brazil by financing sustainable cars equipped with flexible fuel, hybrid or electric engines ”, states Fábio Raposo, Executive Director of Banco Alfa.

Brazil, Latin America’s largest auto market, experienced a first drop in sales triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic. As the economy gradually reopens, the country is expected to see an increase in car sales, with more Brazilians likely to opt for personal vehicles due to the risks of transmission on public transport. This will boost the economy with the impact of the sector on the supply chain and other segments. The push to buy flexible fuel, electric or hybrid vehicles will also create greater demand for more sustainable products.

“One of IFC’s strategic priorities in Brazil is to support investments in modern, climate-smart technologies to mitigate climate impact. This funding aims to contribute to the sustainability of the market and translates into support for the implementation of investments in renewable energies and energy efficiency ”, states Carlos Leiria Pinto, Country Manager of IFC in Brazil.

In September 2016, Brazil ratified its commitment to the Paris Agreement to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and increase the participation of bioenergy in its global energy matrix (including biofuels and bioelectricity). The country is already the world’s second largest producer of biofuels, behind the United States, and has the largest market for flexible fuel vehicles. These cars have proven to be an effective tool in mitigating climate change. The flex vehicle fleet reached 2.328 million units in 2019. In the case of electric vehicles, the fleet is still small: the total of electric cars used in the country is around 20,000, according to data from the Brazilian Association of Electric Vehicles (ABVE).

“This investment marks the start of a long-term partnership with Banco Alfa, which will allow the Bank to continue supporting clean mobility, including flexible fuel, electric or hybrid cars,” said Rogerio Santos, IFC Financial Institutions Manager for Brazil and the Southern Cone.

IFC will share its global expertise in climate finance with Banco Alfa to strengthen the bank’s capacity and contribute to increased sustainability in the climate finance market. IFC will also support Banco Alfa in the development of technical capacities for climate definitions, eligibility criteria and environmental impact reports in order to reduce greenhouse gas emissions through the implementation of the tool. climate assessment for financial institutions (CAFI).

Conglomerado Financeiro Alfa
Conglomerado Financeiro Alfa is made up of companies operating in different segments of finance and insurance and, with extensive experience and a tradition based on more than 95 years of history, strives for excellence in development of its activities.

With operations mainly in personal and corporate credit, treasury, third party fund management, private banking, wealth management and mergers and acquisitions, the Conglomerado Financeiro Alfa is formed by Banco Alfa, Banco Alfa de Investimento, Alfa Financeira, Alfa Leasing, Alfa Corretora, Alfa Seguradora and Alfa Previdência. Offering security and solidity, it operates with respect for ethical and sustainable values, which have always accompanied its trajectory.

Alfa Conglomerate is also made up of non-financial companies from diverse sectors, such as hospitality (Transamerica Hotel Chain), building materials (C&C Casa e Construção), agriculture and agribusiness (Agropalma), mineral water (Águas Prata), food (Ice cream La Basque), cultural (Teatro Alfa), communication (Rede Transamerica de Rádio) and leather (Soubach).

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About IFC

IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is the world’s largest private sector-focused development institution in emerging markets. We work in over 100 countries, using our capital, expertise and influence to create markets and opportunities in developing countries. In FY2020, we invested $ 22 billion in private businesses and financial institutions in developing countries, harnessing the power of the private sector to end extreme poverty and foster shared prosperity. For more information visit

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Students to test their piloting skills and creativity at the next Drone Competition in Pittsburg | New Tue, 09 Mar 2021 10:57:12 +0000

PITTSBURG, Kan. – A remote-controlled flying robot with a camera might sound high-tech, but the technology is readily available at the Pitsco Idea Shop in downtown Pittsburg, which has announced a competition for area schools.

The Pitsco Idea Shop was formed by a partnership between Pittsburg State University and Pitsco Education, which annually serves more than 3 million students in more than 60 countries with its products and programs in science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

The store offers technologies and equipment such as 3D printers, laser engravers and drones.

Matt Frankenbery, vice president of education at Pitsco, said it was initially intended to function as a gym membership where there is a monthly fee to use the equipment.

But the pandemic happened during its opening year, so the store had to change gears.

“We really did this because of the students in the community, and what we said was create a few student events during this COVID time so they can sign up on their interest. We can then monitor their access to the facility and make sure it’s a safe but still collaborative and innovative opportunity, ”said Frankenbery.

The Pitsco Idea Shop has now partnered with the university to offer its first drone competition.

Registration is now open to over 20 teams of intermediate, high school and college students from across the region. The registration deadline is March 17th. The number of teams will be capped due to COVID-19 and social distancing.

A key component for participants will be effective collaboration when solving team problems, Frankenbery said.

“When students graduate and enter the workforce, we can’t expect them to magically know how to work well with others,” he added. “They have to have that experience in the classroom. They need to practice being faced with a challenge and group dynamics of individuals with whom they do not agree. They have to understand how I resolve a conflict, how to resolve a challenge and ultimately we all win in the end. This drone challenge is a perfect example.

After registering, teams of two to three students will receive a drone on loan from Pitsco as well as $ 200 in free supplies such as PVC pipes, wooden planks and binder clips to build an obstacle course. Each team must create a drone mission and tell a story using their terrain elements inside a 10ft by 20ft mesh drone area.

“It’s about equal parts flying drones and creativity,” Frankenbery said. “The creativity part is that they are given a full set of materials to build an obstacle course inside the drone arena. … Then they will learn to fly the drone by piloting through the obstacles of other teams that have been built.

The first rounds of the competition will start in April. Several schools have already registered, including St. Mary’s Colgan Catholic Schools in Pittsburg. Dennis Burke, president of the schools, said officials were eagerly awaiting their students to have learning opportunities.

“Not only is this technology state of the art, but it gives them an environment that we just don’t have the capacity to provide,” he said. “As proud as we are of the school program, this is the first in St. Mary’s between what kids love to do and a branch of science. Now they can finally do something really practical and fun. If you can teach them things and they don’t know it, even better.


The Pitsco Idea Shop, which was Block22’s last room, officially opened in November.

Block22 is a collaborative project between PSU, the City of Pittsburg and the Vecino Group, a real estate developer based in Springfield, Missouri. The group has invested around $ 18 million to restore and renovate four historic downtown buildings: Commerce, Baxter, Banque Nationale and Opera House Hotel.

“Pitsco Education was an easy collaborator and partner for us to approach when we were examining, about four years ago, the idea of ​​installing a manufacturing space in this 18,000 square feet that we call The Foundry,” said Shawn Naccarato, Director of Strategy at PSU.

Although Pitsco’s physical location is new to Pittsburg, it celebrated its 50th anniversary of Harvey Dean’s founding on Saturday.

Nacarrato said they are considering other partnerships with schools and STEM education for field trips, training and more.

“The sky is the limit,” he said. “The space has doubled since we started planning. We’re excited to be able to do something this semester.

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Preoperative puzzle games reduce the risk of post-surgical delirium Tue, 09 Mar 2021 10:57:10 +0000

Playing cognitive games before surgery reduces the risk of postoperative delirium in the elderly in a dose-dependent manner, new research suggests.

Results from a randomized controlled trial show that surgical patients who engaged in 10 hours of cognitive pre-adaptation delivered via an app, also referred to as ‘neurobic’, were 40% less likely to experience postoperative delirium compared to their counterparts who did not. In addition, the effect appears to be dose dependent.

Compared to controls, surgical patients who played between 5 and 10 hours reduced their risk by more than half, and those who played 10 hours or more experienced a 61% reduction in the risk of delirium.

“The results of this randomized clinical trial show that patients who met at least at least a preoperative cognitive exercise intervention had a significantly reduced incidence of postoperative delirium,” senior author Michelle Humeidan, MD, associate professor of anesthesiology at the ‘Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center in Columbus says Medscape Medical News.

“Performing as little as about 5 hours of brain exercise in the days or weeks before surgery can reduce the risk of postoperative delirium in patients 60 years of age or older,” she added.

The study was published online November 11 to JAMA surgery.

Cognitive reserve

“In perioperative medicine, the focus is on improving baseline function in elderly patients to promote successful recovery after surgery,” write the authors. These current “pre-adaptation” programs include exercise, nutrition, behavioral techniques, and “optimization of pre-existing medical conditions”.

The goal is “to increase physiological and emotional reserve to help patients tolerate the stress of surgery,” say the researchers. However, cognitive activities have not been included in pre-adaptation to date.

“As an anesthesiologist, I have always been interested in optimizing the organs and systems of the body to tolerate the stress of surgery and promote successful recovery,” Humeidan said.

“Impaired attention and thinking (postoperative delirium) is a very common complication after surgery which can have serious consequences, especially in older patients.

“My training in neuroscience gave me the idea of ​​continuing to increase ‘cognitive reserve’ through pre-surgery brain exercise to optimize brain function and protect against postoperative delirium.”

First large-scale application

To investigate, the researchers conducted the Neurobics trial, which they describe as the “first large-scale application of cognitive pre-adaptation in this population.”

They recruited patients who were scheduled to undergo major non-cardiac and non-neurological surgery under General anaesthesia. The patients included in the study were aged 60 and over and had no cognitive or active impairment depression before the study.

Patients meeting inclusion criteria (n = 251, median [interquartile range] 67 years old, 64.9% female) were randomized to receive either cognitive pre-adaptation (n = 125) or to continue daily activities as usual (n = 126).

The intervention consisted of an app containing a series of brain exercise games focused on memory, attention speed, flexibility and problem solving. Patients were asked to participate in these activities 10 hours prior to their surgery date.

The primary outcome measure was delirium immediately after surgery up to 7 days after surgery or discharge, and was defined based on a brief method of assessing confusion and the d scale. assessment of commemorative delirium, as well as nursing progress notes and a medical record review.

Study groups were well matched in terms of demographics, comorbid burden, education, baseline cognitive performance, indicators of depression, preoperative medications, and most indicators of frailty.

“Minimum compliance” was defined as participation in at least some of the brain exercises, with 96.8% of participants in the intervention group meeting this criterion.

“Promising” discoveries

Among the patients in the intervention group, only 8.8% achieved the goal of 10 hours of cognitive exercise; the overall median preoperative exercise time was 4.6 (IQR, 1.3 – 7.4) hours.

The rate of delirium for all trial participants was 18.7%. In the control intervention group, the rate of delirium was 23%, while the rate of delirium in the intervention group (after 4 patients who did not meet compliance standards were withdrawn) gave a delirium rate of 13.2% (P = .04).

The risk of delirium remained lower in the intervention group compared to the control group, even when researchers adjusted surgeries and response to indicators of frailty.

No statistical difference was found between the groups with regard to the day of onset of postoperative delirium, the duration or the total number of positive days for delirium.

Participants in the intervention group who spent more time doing cognitive exercises had lower rates of delirium than those who spent less time (P= .20).

Time spent on cognitive exercises before surgery Postoperative delirium rate
<5 hours 18.4%
5-10 hours 10.2%
> 10 hours 9%

“The results of the Neurobics trial are certainly promising and support that brain exercise before surgery may reduce the risk of postoperative delirium, but there is still work to be done to determine ideal brain exercise activities, when and the effective dosage, ”Humeidan said.

She added that asking patients to consider a low-risk intervention like brain exercise before surgery is “certainly reasonable, but it will take more time and investigation before it becomes routine.”

Low cost, low risk

Commenting on the study of Medscape Medical News , Katie J. Schenning, MD, MPH, MCR, associate professor of anesthesiology and perioperative medicine and assistant medical director, Preoperative Medicine Clinic, Oregon Health & Science University, Portland, called him “an exciting contribution to the field of postoperative delirium research “. “

Schenning, who was not involved in the study, said: “The authors present a low-cost, low-risk intervention that patients can perform in the comfort of their own homes, leading to a clinically meaningful reduction in delirium.”

She also found it “encouraging” that even poorly compliant patients received a “significant benefit”.

“In practice, it might be easier for this demographic of patients to engage in brain exercises that are not technology dependent; however, low-tech strategies would be more difficult to trace from a research perspective, ”she said.

She suggested that perioperative physicians can “encourage patients to engage in ‘brain games’ before surgery to potentially reduce the risk of developing postoperative delirium. “

Support for this trial was provided by institutional funds from the Department of Anesthesiology and the Neuroscience Research Institute at Ohio State University.

Humeidan received 2 years of loan repayment support from the National Institutes of Health loan repayment programs and non-financial support from Lumos Labs Inc while conducting the study, as well as personal expenses from Medtronic outside of work. submitted. Disclosures by other authors are listed in the original article. Schenning reports receiving research grants from the National Institute on Aging, the Alzheimer’s Association and the Foundation for Anesthesia Education and research.

JAMA Surg.Published online November 11, 2020. Abstract

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US plans to end overseas fossil fuel funding, threatens to back billions of dollars for oil and gas Tue, 09 Mar 2021 10:57:10 +0000

Joe Biden pledged to work to end public funding for ‘carbon-intensive’ fossil fuel projects – wording activists fear leaves the door open to methane gas

Joe Biden’s administration is working to end funding for overseas “carbon-intensive” fossil fuel projects, potentially canceling billions of dollars in support for oil and gas projects around the world.

In one of a series of executive orders aimed at addressing the climate crisis in the United States and abroad, Biden urged his government “to identify measures by which the United States can promote an end to international financing. carbon-intensive fossil fuel energy while simultaneously advancing sustainable development and a green recovery ”.

The order stipulated that the Secretary of State as well as the Secretaries of Treasury and Energy would work with the US Export-Import Bank and the head of the Development finance company to achieve this.

Biden too directed federal agencies to eliminate fossil fuel subsidies. “Unlike previous administrations, I don’t think the federal government should give big oil companies $ 40 billion in fossil fuel subsidies,” he said in a statement. speech before signing the decree.

Hours earlier, Presidential Climate Envoy John Kerry had said a roundtable hosted by the World Economic Forum that Biden had asked his administration to develop “a plan to end international funding of fossil fuel projects with public money.”

The announcement brings the US closer to the EU, which foreign ministers called this week for the end of the financing of fossil fuels abroad. Last month the United Kingdom engaged to end its funding of oil and gas projects, but the policy has not yet come into effect.

Carney’s the working group on carbon offsets avoids questions of environmental integrity

United States The International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) and its predecessor, the Overseas Private Investment Corporation, have approved around $ 4 billion for overseas fossil fuel projects over the past five years, aAccording to the Friends of the Earth climate group. Since 2018, the The US Export-Import Bank has given the green light to more than $ 5 billion for overseas fossil fuel investments.

This included a $ 4.7 billion loan for a natural gas project in northern Mozambique, $ 400 million in financial support for Mexican oil company Pemex, And one $ 18 million loan for oil and gas production in Vaca Muerta, in western Argentina.

United States Import-export bank too provided a $ 805 million ready for the Kusile Power Plant, a 4,800 MW coal-fired power plant currently under construction in South Africa.

Many of these projects were approved under Donald Trump, Han Chen, head of international energy policy at Natural Resources Defense Council, told Climate Home News.

“You had a lot of fossil fuel promoters, trade associations, and interest groups that were really using the Trump administration and the apparatus of American diplomacy to push deals in many countries. There was a lot of pressure for countries to accept the LNG deals – they were part of the trade and economic negotiations, ”Chen said.

In October, the DFC said it planned to invest in fossil fuel projects in several Southeast Asian countries to “help expand access to safe and reliable energy.

A project under consideration by the DFC involved the construction of a 2,250 MW gas-fired power station in Binh Thuan province, in south-eastern Vietnam.

“Without this very pro-fossil fuel export program, what [will] come up with all these projects that, frankly, weren’t really financially viable? Chen added.

John Kerry pledges ‘considerably’ more climate finance at adaptation summit

Campaigners welcomed Biden’s announcement, but said questions remained about when the policy could be implemented and whether the order included ending funding for methane gas.

“The executive order leaves the door open to only cover coal, rather than all fossil fuels, with the dubious language of ‘carbon-intensive fossil fuel energy’,” Kate DeAngelis, director of international finance at Friends of the Earth.

Gas is generally touted as a cleaner fuel than coal because it emits about half the carbon dioxide when burned for energy. But methane leakage or flaring during extraction, processing and transportation results in fugitive emissions that can significantly worsen the climate impact of fuel.

Chen said there were indications the Biden administration is ready to move away from financing gas projects. “Kerry really insisted that there is no more time for gas,” she said.

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Speaking at the World Economic Forum, Kerry commented: “The problem with gas is that if we build a huge infrastructure for gas now to keep using it as bridge fuel, then we haven’t really run out. the other possibilities, we’re gonna be stuck with stranded assets in 10, 20, 30 years.

Kerry announced this week that the United States will draft a climate finance plan and pledged to “Considerably increase” the international adaptation finance and resilience initiatives.

In his executive orders, Biden said he would convene the Major Economies Forum again. Launched by the Obama administration, the forum brings together the world’s 17 largest issuers to discuss high-level leadership and collaboration on climate action.

“Financing fossil fuels is definitely going to be a big problem [at the forum]. The financing of coal in particular will be in the foreground. Many countries will be heavily dependent on coal [attending]. This is one of the main conversations [that needs] to happen first – get commitments to end coal funding, ”Chen said.

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Slog AM: Stimulus Bill is getting closer, TikTok’s bad behavior and a massive Microsoft hack – Slog Tue, 09 Mar 2021 10:57:09 +0000

Seattle is losing residents to suburbs, increasing the likelihood of wacky hijackings involving curious neighbors. Martin Prescott / Getty Images

A stimulus bill is approaching adoption. This weekend, the Senate passed the US bailout, which means it’s now going back to the House for a little more tinkering, and then to Biden. Here are some highlights: People earning less than $ 75,000 per year will receive a check for $ 1,400 (ultimately); the recovery of unemployment is extended until the beginning of September; your first $ 10,200 of unemployment will be tax exempt; COBRA will be (temporarily) inexpensive; you may be eligible for rent and utility assistance; and some student loan borrowers will benefit from a tax exemption. The Senate version removed an increase in the minimum wage, reduced the number of people who will receive checks and reduced the number of unemployed people.

Your work email may have been hacked by China. Microsoft says its email software was hacked a few weeks ago; tens of thousands of organizations are estimated to have been infiltrated, if not more. Microsoft just released new security updates, but now security researchers say hackers are redouble efforts try to squeeze through as many systems as possible before IT can implement the fixes. Banks, utilities and health organizations are among those compromised. here is a dramatic reconstruction of the transferred data.

Natalie Portman looks heartbroken. Merry Christmas, lesbians:

Congratulations Mr. Jewett. Dan Jewett, teacher at Lakeside School in Seattle, just married MacKenzie Scott, aka Jeff Bezos’ ex-wife. MacKenzie is “worth” about $ 50 billion – at least to people who think money is somehow a reflection of a person’s worth – and she said she would give away most of that money. .

George Floyd’s murder trial begins today. The crowds are gathered outside the Minneapolis courthouse where Derek Chauvin’s trial began. Today marks the first day of jury selection, which could take up to three weeks.

Texas will not forgive residents’ $ 10,000 electricity bills. Regulators at the Public Services Commission decided not to cancel those crazy bills from last month’s winter storm because power companies could really need the money. Power companies say it was the PUC that forced them to charge crazy tariffs. Meanwhile, lawmakers are considering a proposal to give the PUC more power to regulate oil and gas. Good idea!!!

The Seattle Jewish Film Festival is underway right now. It is all online, with more than 300 films, and The Seattle Emerald has a good look of some of the highlights.

Facebook seems terribly interested in controllerless virtual reality. Two experimental applications for the Facebook Oculus have no more controllers and instead follow the movements of your hands. The First Steps app is a kind of VR tutorial for new users, and Tiny Castles is an experimental game that relies on gesture tracking. They work… okay. Not great. Feels a bit like handwriting recognition in the 90s – maybe 25% accuracy on a good day.

Cars are just the worst. A wonderful new problem for car ownership is a recent dramatic rise in catalytic converter theft, with thieves hitting the Seattle Humane Society recently. You can add a small canister to your car which makes it harder to steal. Wouldn’t it be nice if fewer people needed a car to get around Seattle? Well, what to dream of.

TikTok has a fun new transphobic trend. Users are to report as “super straight” to indicate that they are hostile to transgender people. Cool, cool, cool, cool. As you will probably remember, the application had an official policy to hide messages from queer, disabled, and fat users; TikTok was always hide some hashtags related to LGBTQ as recently as a few months ago.

Seattle is losing its inhabitants. The number of new residents moving to the city has not changed, but many more are leaving, according to the Post. Most stay nearby and simply move to the suburbs – Bellevue, Kirkland, Shoreline, etc. I’ll be honest, with the streetcar about to open up to the water, I was tempted too. But I would miss going to a gym located in a supermarket.

A local biologist needs your help with a host tree program. Jim Wright started a program to help grow trees which will eventually be used in habitat restoration areas: if you have room in your garden you can just sign up, pay around $ 100, then he’ll deliver a sapling to you that you grow for around two years before it is not transplanted to an environmental site requiring more mature trees.

Harry and Meghan Markle just did a HUGE THING with Oprah. A large interview with the couple aired this morning on CBS. Some notable revelations: Prince Charles has stopped responding to Harry’s calls; Meghan considered self-harming and was unable to discuss it with the family; and they were not protected by the royal family. Meghan says the Queen has always been perfectly kind to her. Oh, and they are pregnant again! If you haven’t already, listen You’re Wrong About episodes about Princess Diana.

Busy weekend for God’s agents. Pope Francis is in Mosul, visiting areas ransacked by ISIS. Meanwhile, the Dalai Lama has just received his COVID first shot.

Speaking of vaccines: This morning, the Centers for Disease Control released new guidelines for those who have been fully immunized. Those with two jabs (or one from Johnson & Johnson) can spend time together indoors without masks, reports Axes.

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