Groups Seek Federal Inquiry Into Utah-Oakland Coal-Export Subsidy

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享From KSL News (Salt Lake City):Environmental groups and other organizations sent a letter Monday asking U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch and other high-ranking federal officials to investigate a $53 million investment in a proposed coal shipping terminal in Oakland, California.The letter was written on behalf of the Center for Biological Diversity, Living Rivers and Colorado Riverkeeper, Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis, Earthjustice, Alliance for a Better Utah, HEAL Utah, Sierra Club and Grand Canyon Trust. A joint statement released by the organizations Monday says the 19-page letter brings attention to “potential legal and ethical violations” of the investment.“The contents of this letter require an external review by several oversight bodies. … The economic, fiscal, financial, environmental, governance, ethical and political red flags raised by the state of Utah’s actions are too numerous to ignore,” Tom Sanzillo, an executive with the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis, a research organization in favor of reducing coal dependence, said in a statement.The investment, passed by the Utah Legislature earlier this year, is slated to grant Carbon, Emery, Sanpete and Sevier counties 49 percent access in the as-yet unbuilt coal terminal. Proponents of the measure say it will help increase short-term coal exports to developing countries, a much-needed boon for the struggling industry.The investment is set to be facilitated by a three-way money transfer involving the state’s specially designated community impact fund, which according to its website “provides loans or grants to state agencies and subdivisions of the state that are socially or economically impacted by mineral resource development on federal lands.” The first stage of the transfer is to begin July 1.Keith Heaton, chairman of the fund’s board, has said the swapping of funds for the project is not considered unusual compared with other projects statewide, particularly transportation projects.However, opponents are also criticizing the community impact fund board, in addition to the state Legislature, and calling for an audit of the deal. Among other accusations, the letter issued Monday says the investment is tied to heavy political conflict of interest, was designed as a brazen a way around environmental and other regulations of the federal Mineral Leasing Act, and is environmentally harmful to residents close to the proposed terminal.John Weisheit, co-founder of the environmental group Living Rivers and Colorado Riverkeeper, said in a statement that the Community Impact Fund Board is complicit in an unscrupulous deal.“The Utah state Legislature and the community impact board are laundering public money through the state transportation fund to provide financial assistance to energy corporations, and not to communities where it truly belongs,” Weisheit said.The letter was also addressed to Mary Kendall, deputy inspector general for the U.S. Department of the Interior, and Gregory Gould, director of the federal Office of Natural Resources Revenue. The letter also indicated copies were distributed to Gov. Gary Herbert and John Huber, U.S. district attorney for Utah.Groups write US Attorney General asking for investigation of coal shipping terminal deal Groups Seek Federal Inquiry Into Utah-Oakland Coal-Export Subsidylast_img read more

Referees Brace up for VAR Starting with Today’s Q’finals

first_imgAccording to IFAB, the use of VAR in matches is aimed at reducing unfairness caused by ‘clear and obvious errors’ or ‘serious missed incidents’.CAF admitted yesterday that since the beginning of the tournament, there have been mock tests of VAR during selected matches, which gave the match officials a practical feel of the system which is expected to enhance officiating at the flagship continental event.It will be the first time CAF will be applying VAR at a major championship, after a mock usage during the Total African Nations Championship (CHAN) in Morocco in 2018. It will be recalled that VAR made its entry into African football for the first time at the Total CAF Super Cup clash between Wydad Athletic Club (Morocco) and TP Mazembe (DR Congo) in Casablanca in February 2018.It was followed by the final matches of the CAF Inter-clubs competitions in 2018 and for the 2018/19 season, and the 2019 Total CAF Super Cup in Doha, Qatar.IFAB Technical Director, David Elleray, who has been supervising the VAR training sessions at the Military Academy Stadium in Cairo, has lauded the decision to have the system for the remainder of the competition.“CAF is being sensible for introducing VAR at the quarter-finals of the Africa Cup of Nations. This is a critical stage of the competition and there are key matches. It is better to have quality in terms of decision making and VAR will help do that,” Elleray told CAFOnline.com.“We have been working on this since April 2018. It has been a process and with the support of CAF Instructors. We are satisfied so far with the preparations and we are training everyday to get better.”Two Europeans referees, according to CAF, have been brought on board to support the VAR system based on their experience and familiarity with the latter. They are Paulinus Van Boekel (Netherlands) and Benoit Millot (France).Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram Duro Ikhazuagbe with agency reportThe first quarter-final clash of the Total Africa Cup of Nations Egypt 2019 between Senegal and Benin this afternoon at the June 30 Stadium, will go into the history books as the first ever game at the AFCON finals with the Video Assistant Referee (VAR).The use of VAR from the quarter-final stage of Egypt 2019 followed the approval of the CAF Executive Committee. Match officials have been preparing feverishly for its usage since both The International Football Association Board (IFAB) and world soccer governing body, FIFA gave CAF the permission to use it from the quarter final stage of the continental showpiece in the land of the Pharaohs.last_img read more