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Chase Bank Limits Cash Withdrawals, Bans International... Before you read this report, remember to sign up to for 100% free stock alerts Chase Bank has moved to limit cash withdrawals while banning business customers from sending...

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Richemont chairman Johann Rupert to take 'grey gap... Billionaire 62-year-old to take 12 months off from Cartier and Montblanc luxury goods groupRichemont's chairman and founder Johann Rupert is to take a year off from September, leaving management of the...

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Cambodia: aftermath of fatal shoe factory collapse... Workers clear rubble following the collapse of a shoe factory in Kampong Speu, Cambodia, on Thursday

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Spate of recent shock departures by 50-something CEOs While the rising financial rewards of running a modern multinational have been well publicised, executive recruiters say the pressures of the job have also been ratcheted upOn approaching his 60th birthday...

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UK Uncut loses legal challenge over Goldman Sachs tax... While judge agreed the deal was 'not a glorious episode in the history of the Revenue', he ruled it was not unlawfulCampaign group UK Uncut Legal Action has lost its high court challenge over the legality...

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US lifts Boeing Dreamliner ban

Category : Business

US regulators have issued a formal “air worthiness” directive allowing revamped Boeing 787 Dreamliners to fly again, after a three-month grounding.

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America joins Japan in grounding Boeing 787 Dreamliners

Category : Business

Influential US regulator the FAA joins Japan in taking troubled planes out of service, followed by India and Chile

American regulators followed the lead of Japanese airlines by grounding the Boeing 787 Dreamliner on Wednesday night, saying a recent series of safety incidents meant urgent action was needed.

The US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) said it would require airlines to demonstrate that the plane’s cutting-edge batteries were safe before allowing further flights. It has notified regulators in other countries of its action.

Japan’s two leading airlines, All Nippon Airways (ANA) and Japan Airlines, had already grounded their fleets of Boeing 787s after one of the Dreamliner passenger jets made an emergency landing, the latest in a series of incidents that have heightened safety concerns over a plane that many see as the future of commercial aviation.

After the FAA announcement, India and Chile were the next countries to move. Air India spokesman K Swaminathan said India’s aviation authority had directed the state airline to stop flying the Boeing planes on Thursday morning as it waits for an investigation by Indian regulators to take place. “Air India has temporarily ceased operation of its Dreamliners,” Swaminathan said.

Chile’s LAN airline said it was suspending flights of its three Dreamliners in compliance with the FAA directive.

The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and other air safety authorities around the world are likely to bring in similar measures now that the FAA has intervened. A spokesman for EASA told the Reuters news agency that it would usually follow safety directives if they were issued in a country where the aircraft was built. “In this case we have issued no airworthiness directive so far, so the FAA’s directive should be endorsed by EASA,” the spokesman said.

In one show of faith, Poland’s LOT airlines sent one of its two Dreamliners on its maiden transatlantic flight from Warsaw to Chicago, to the reported disquiet of some passengers interviewed. LOT is the only airline within the jurisdiction of EASA that has taken delivery of the 787 so far.

Other countries whose airlines use the 787 are Ethiopia and Qatar.

ANA said instruments aboard a domestic flight indicated a battery error, triggering emergency warnings. The incident was described by a transport ministry official as “highly serious” – language used in international safety circles as indicating that there could have been an accident. Boeing shares fell 2% in after-hours trading to $72.80 (£45.50) after the FAA announcement.

Its move came as American safety investigators were due to fly to Japan on Thursday to liaise with Japanese counterparts.

ANA and Japan Airlines have 24 Dreamliners between them, representing almost half of the 50 delivered by Boeing to airlines worldwide. Last week the FAA announced a full review of the revolutionary plane’s design and manufacture after five incidents in five days on different planes in Japan and the US. These included a battery fire, fuel leakages from engines, and cracks developing in the cockpit windscreen.

Given the Dreamliners’ significantly greater fuel efficiency than most models, airlines have been queuing up to buy a model that promises greener, quieter – and cheaper – aviation.

The aircraft’s design also makes emerging long-haul destinations feasible with fewer passengers. In Britain, British Airways, Thomson and Virgin have placed orders, with BA expecting to operate the first of its 24 Dreamliners this year.

Production problems drastically held up delivery of the aircraft: it first entered service in late 2011, four years after the first 787 was unveiled. Issues have since been reported with the plane in India and Qatar. While analysts say such “teething problems” are not uncommon, Boeing will be acutely aware that rival Airbus has the new A350 coming to offer an alternative for airlines updating their fleets.

Aviation consultant John Strickland said: “This story is going to run on for Boeing. The key thing is that the Dreamliner 787 is so leading edge.”

The Seattle-based manufacturer may be facing a repair bill to rival the £200m costs Airbus incurred as a result of cracks in the wings of the A380 in 2011. : “Boeing is aware of the diversion of a 787 operated by ANA to Takamatsu in western Japan. We will be working with our customer and the appropriate regulatory agencies.”

New Fall Protection Measures Soon to Take Effect

Category : World News

OSHA’s new directive regarding fall protection will take effect in September 2012. Learn more about the new rules and how it may affect builders and contractors.

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Shelby’s family in burial dispute

Category : World News

The body of celebrated auto designer and race car driver Carroll Shelby, who died more than a month ago, could remain in a Dallas morgue for several more weeks while his family fights about burial plans, his sons said Tuesday.
Shelby’s three children said their father, who died May 10 in a Dallas hospital, signed a document in February giving them permission to have his body cremated. His wife, Cleo Shelby, who lives in California, alleges the signature on that directive is a forgery. She said a document signed two years ago gives her power of attorney in Shelby’s affairs.

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Leaked documents reveal UK fight to dilute EU green energy targets

Category : Business

Allegations of coalition hypocrisy over green issues as critics say documents show UK has caved in to fossil fuel lobbyists

The government has been trying to water down key environmental regulations in Brussels despite trumpeting its commitment to green issues at home, leaked documents show.

The papers, seen by the Guardian, reveal British officials repeatedly trying to prevent the adoption of European Union rules on energy efficiency, curtailing the proposals and making them voluntary rather than mandatory in many cases. In addition, the UK has tried repeatedly to ensure that the EU does not adopt a new target for renewable energy generation.

They are significant because they indicate that Ed Davey, the energy secretary since February, has given his blessing to lobbying begun under his predecessor Chris Huhne. These government efforts have the backing of the UK’s big six energy firms, according to other documents obtained under freedom of information rules.

Both issues remain key to plans to reduce European greenhouse gas emissions – putting the government’s position in Europe at odds with its fanfare over the last few weeks for the proposed “green” energy bill. Ministers have described the bill, the centrepiece of claims to be “the greenest government ever“, as likely to generate £110bn in investment in low-carbon and efficient energy infrastructure in the UK in the biggest shakeup of the market since privatisation in the 1980s.

The current EU target for renewables – to generate 20% of energy from sources such as solar and wind – runs out in 2020 and as yet there is nothing to replace it. But having a fixed target is regarded as crucial to create the certainty needed for investors to back technologies such as sun, wind and tide; the current target is credited with spurring a huge rise in renewable generation.

Renewable energy developers and green campaigners fear that without a similar target for 2030, the impetus to invest in renewables will be lost to fossil fuels such as gas.

Fatih Birol, chief economist for the International Energy Agency, told the Guardian: “It would threaten investment in renewables if there is an over-reliance on gas.”

In one leaked document, from the Council of the EU on the draft 2050 proposals on energy, the UK has attempted to excise a reference to a potential 30% target for renewables by 2030, replacing it with the far more vague wording of “a significantly increased share for renewable in the energy mix”. At another point in the document, which is dated 23 April 2012, the UK has tried to remove the word “urgent”.

The document shows that Davey, a Liberal Democrat, has opposed a new EU target on renewable energy since taking office in early February. A previous document showing attempts by the government to water down the EU renewable energy target – revealed by the Guardian in March – was largely prepared under his predecessor, Chris Huhne.

Fatih Birol, chief economist for the International Energy Agency, told the Guardian that a renewed focus on gas was bad news for renewables. “It would threaten investment in renewables, if there is an over-reliance on gas,” he said.

The UK wants Europe to toughen its commitment on cutting carbon, from a goal of reductions of 20% by 2020, compared with 1990 levels, to a far stiffer cut of 30% by the same date. But that position has been undermined by a rebellion by Tory MEPs, many of whom have rejected the tougher target.

On energy efficiency – for which the European Commission is trying to draw up a new directive – the UK is proposing measures that would water down the obligations of businesses and the public sector to cut the amount of wasted energy.

According to the leaked documents, the UK is trying to prevent the EU’s target of improving energy efficiency by 20% by 2020 from being made legally binding. British officials are also saying no to mandatory audits of efficiency, which the European Commission argues are needed to ensure the targets are being met. The UK also opposes some renovations of public buildings on the basis that they could compromise public safety, although this argument is widely disputed. The key document is from the Council of the EU dated 30 May.

Dave Timms, of Friends of the Earth, said: “[Energy and climate change secretary] Ed Davey came into office loudly broadcasting his personal commitment to energy efficiency and its many benefits, but so far he has been unwilling or unable to back tough action to save energy. A strong directive including a binding energy-saving target would be a big boost to economic growth but [if the changes are made] it will be weak, unambitious and full of holes. The UK has played a significant role in this disappointing situation.”

The UK’s proposed changes, which green campaigners say would fatally weaken the energy efficiency plans, chime with the opinions of the big six suppliers, as recorded in their responses to an informal consultation held by the Department of Energy and Climate Change, obtained by Greenpeace under the Freedom of Information Act.

For instance, Eon opposed “an obligation-based approach”, in favour of incentives to consumers to improve their efficiency, and rejected a proposal to make power generation more efficient by stipulating that the waste heat from new plants should be recycled to heat buildings. Other companies, including SSE, RWE npower, Centrica and EDF, were equally opposed to rules on reusing heat, although Scottish Power suggested the proposal could be adapted so as to exclude sites where it would be ineffective or unviable. Most companies were also unwilling to countenance mandatory obligations to cut energy wastage.

According to an analysis by the European Commission, such sweeping changes will render the directive ineffective and it will not achieve the energy reductions needed – even though these reductions would save Europe tens of billions or more from its annual €500bn (£404bn) bill for importing energy.

Joss Garman, senior energy campaigner at Greenpeace, said: “These documents are proof that [Davey] has caved in to fossil fuel industry lobbyists fighting to increase our dependence on burning imported and polluting gas to generate power.”

“With rocketing gas prices hitting families’ energy bills and the wider economy, now is exactly the time ministers should be backing clean energy to provide secure power at stable prices. This is a government that has a too cosy relationship with powerful special interests – and Britain’s bill payers will pick up the tab.”

On the 2030 renewables target, a spokesman for the Department of Energy and Climate Change said: “We are clear that long-term carbon reduction targets are more likely to be met cost-effectively if the exact mix of technologies is left for each member state to determine for itself. He added: “The UK has been taking a lead role in trying to get agreement on the energy efficiency directive. We want it to be ambitious but it needs to be something that will be deliverable here in the UK and across the rest of the EU.”

Response of big six energy suppliers to EU directive

Category : Business

Reactions to the directive, obtained by Greenpeace under the Freedom of Information Act

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When is Hot Water Too Hot?

Category : World News

The New York State Consumer Protection Board has issued a directive urging consumers to make sure their children and loved ones are protected from extremely painful and possibly fatal scalding burns.

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Mr. Okada’s pseudo-reform

Category : World News

Deputy Prime Minister Katsuya Okada has directed government ministries to reduce the number of recruits for fiscal 2013 by an average of about 70 percent from fiscal 2009′s level. This is a typical example of the pseudo-reform that the Democratic Party of Japan government often uses to dupe the public. The government is apparently trying to use the recruitment cut as a sort of quid pro quo for people to accept the planned consumption tax hike.
Mr. Okada’s directive could lead to the bashing of public servants and lower the quality of administrative services. Instead of adopting an “easy” policy like slashing the number of recruits, the government should tackle the more difficult job of breaking the bureaucracy’s vested interests and eliminating waste and unnecessary work in the central bureaucracy. For example, the work of independent administrative agencies should be placed under strict scrutiny.

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