Speaking to Cherwell on his decision to run, Bertholdi-Saad said: “I liked canvassing in first year and the local Labour Party wanted young people, BME people and women to run—I thought that two out of three wasn’t bad!”Bertholdi-Saad also has previous campaign experience, having helped Daniel Iley-Williamson—another member of OULC—get elected as city councillor for Holywell last year.Daniel Iley-Williamson, a Politics tutor and PhD student at Queen’s, and was hoping to be the Labour candidate for Oxford East in the upcoming general election before the selection of Anneliese Dodds, Labour’s MEP in the South East England region.This comes after the announcement that Andrew Smith, the Oxford East Labour MP for 30 years, will not be standing as a candidate in June’s snap election. This constituency contains the majority of Oxford colleges.Speaking about his reasons for running, Iley-Williamson told Cherwell: “in a parliament in which the current average age of MPs is 51, I want to bring the voice of the austerity generation to Westminster”.Iley-Williamson’s campaign is focused on the need for rent control, a higher minimum wage, free education, and defending public services. Iley-Williamson’s hopes of becoming Labour’s prospective parliamentary candidate for Oxford East were dashed when Anneliese Dodds, a Labour MEP first elected in 2014, was selected by members of the National Executive Committee.Harry Samuels, a classicist at New College and former President of the Oxford University Liberal Democrats (OULD), is running as a Lib Dem candidate. Samuels also stood for Carfax at the city council election in 2016.Speaking to Cherwell about student representation in local politics, Samuels commented: “It’s vitally important that students are part of the wider community and engage with it. We’re not some separate bubble with no right to representation, and it’s important that we stand up for what we believe in too.”Discussing his decision to run for the county council, Samuels emphasises the need to counter the hard Brexit being put forward by other parties. Like many students running in these elections, Samuels is also focusing on social care. Lucinda Chamberlain, a third-year PPE student at Brasenose, is also running as a Lib Dem candidate.Chamberlain previously ran for council in 2015 when she was 18 and is also a former President of OULD and former President of Oxford Students For Liberty. Chamberlain’s policies focus on homelessness, housing prices, and greater student representation and consideration.When asked about what she was looking forward to on the campaign trail, Chamberlain said: “I always have fun with campaigning, although it’s taken a while to get used to seeing my own names on the leaflets, and in everyone’s pidges!”“Oxford University is such an integral part of this city and its community, and yet the views and interests of most students are side-lined and ignored”.Alex Curtis, running as a Conservative candidate, is already a seasoned political activist. He is currently Deputy Chair of the Oxford East Conservative Association and has run to be a councillor before.Speaking to Cherwell, Curtis said: “I decided to run because I am passionate about many of the issues covered by Oxfordshire County Council. Good governance is a challenge, and it is very difficult to balance limited public spending with good quality public services.”County Council elections will take place on 4 May and the General Election will take place on 8 June Several Oxford students will be taking their passion for politics and student activism to a whole new level as election season approaches, with a handful standing to be Oxfordshire County councillors and one student hoping to be Labour’s new parliamentary candidate for Oxford East in the upcoming general election.County Council elections are held in May every four years with all 63 seats up for election on 4 May 2017.Students will be running for seats in divisions including Abingdon East and Cowley. The key issues for the students running are local housing, social care, homelessness, employment, and the maintenance of the environment and infrastructure.The County Council is responsible for 80% of local government services. Candidates include Lucas Bertholdi-Saad (Labour for Summertown and Wolvercote division), Lucinda Chamberlain (Liberal Democrat for University Parks division), Alex Curtis (Conservative for Isis division), Louis McEvoy (Labour for Abingdon East division), and Harry Samuels (Liberal Democrat for Cowley division).McEvoy, a second-year Historian at Christ Church and OULC member, is focusing his campaigning on the “protection and funding for services”, “the status of care work”, homelessness, and housing. He has previously campaigned during the 2016 local elections and EU referendum.Bertholdi-Saad is a second-year History and Economics student at Wadham, and is the current Wadham Student Union President and a former OULC co-chair.Writing about his campaign on the OULC website, Bertholdi-Saad said: “Locally, there are real issues that come out talking to local people as well as following local and national politics. This ranges from dangerous local trees in Jordan Hill … to larger county issues—cuts to social care, cuts to our NHS, and other unaccountable changes.”
Indiana utility to close all coal plants by 2028 FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Northwest Indiana Times:NIPSCO has a tentative plan to retire its entire coal-fired electricity generation fleet in the next decade, with the majority of its coal-fired generators to be retired in the next five years. The company made the announcement Wednesday at the fourth of five public meetings detailing the development of a new Integrated Resource Plan for the utility.Renewable sources of energy, including wind and solar, along with battery storage, will likely replace its use of coal, according to the company.NIPSCO retired the two coal-fired generators at its Bailly Generating Station along Lake Michigan earlier this year, as part of a plan to reduce its coal-fired generation by half by 2023. That left five still in use.Four coal-fired units at the R.M. Schahfer Generating Station in Wheatfield will be retired no later than 2023, and the one unit at the Michigan City Generating Station by 2028, if the plan is carried out. The Schahfer plant also has gas-fired “peaking units” that ensure a consistent flow of electricity during peak times. The move to retire its 1,800 megawatts of coal-fired generation “will significantly accelerate carbon reductions across the NIPSCO footprint,” the company said in announcing the plan. The reduction will be quicker and of greater magnitude than previously announced targets, which had only included retirement of two of the four Schahfer generators in addition to the Bailly retirement.[NIPSCO President Violet] Sistovaris said advancements in technology and changes in the energy market are the primary drivers of the change in plans. “Retiring our aging coal fleet sooner will cost substantially less compared to our original plans for extending retirements over a longer duration,” she said.More: NIPSCO plan would eliminate coal-fired electricity generation within 10 years
January 12, 2018 SHARE Email Facebook Twitter GO-TIME: Commonwealth Saves Local Governments $1.8 Million Through Innovative Electricity Program Efficiency, GO-TIME, Government That Works, Innovation, Press Release Harrisburg, PA –Local governments, school districts and others will cut their electricity costs by $1.8 million over the next four years, thanks to COSTARS, a state purchasing program that allows members to purchase materials at discounted prices, said Ken Hess, deputy secretary for the Department of General Services.“One of the Wolf Administration’s priorities is to create a ‘Government That Works’ by adding or creating value for the customers we serve,” Hess said. “The Expanded Electricity Procurement Program has proven its value as a successful way for COSTARS members to reduce their electricity bills and generate savings for their local taxpayers.”The state’s cooperative purchasing program, or COSTARS, allows its members – including municipalities, public authorities, school districts, and certain non-profits – to use state-awarded contracts to purchase a large variety of materials and services at lower prices.Since 2009, a collaboration between the Department of General Services’ Bureau of Procurement and the Penn State Facilities Engineering Institute (PSFEI) has competitively bid and awarded contracts for more than 7,000 electricity accounts among state government and a limited number of COSTARS members saving $4 million annually through 2019.Last year, through the Public Utility Commission, PSFEI amended its electric broker’s license to expand the electricity procurement program to all COSTARS members.“With the success we have experienced in saving our COSTARS members millions of dollars on their electricity bills, we are looking to increase the participation at our next electricity bidding event in April,” Hess said. “The more COSTARS members that participate in each event, the better the opportunity for obtaining the lowest possible pricing.”To participate in the commonwealth’s next electricity bidding event in April, interested COSTARS members need to register with Scott Harford of PSFEI, at [email protected] or 814-863-2090 by March 31, 2018.The Expanded Electricity Procurement Program is part of the department’s broader efforts to save money on goods and services purchased by state government, which have resulted in over $140 million in savings over the last two fiscal years. Overall, state agencies have saved over $373 million through this and other initiatives through GO-TIME.For more information on COSTARS or how to participate in the program, visit COSTARS online.
(Reuters) – Militant group Boko Haram is “the worst enemy of Islam” and will be defeated because West African Muslims reject its violent actions and harsh interpretation of the Koran, Niger’s President Mahamadou Issoufou said on Friday.“There is nothing Islamic about Boko Haram,” Issoufou told students and faculty at the Harvard Institute of Politics John F. Kennedy Forum in Cambridge, Massachusetts, during a trip to the United States.“Abducting and raping women, killing innocent people, drinking human blood … these are not the most efficient ways of spreading Islam,” he said. “Boko Haram has no future, Boko Haram will be defeated, God willing.”Niger is taking part in a regional operation against Boko Haram in northern Nigeria, a militant group which has launched repeated bloody attacks and abductions in Nigeria and an increasing number of raids into neighboring countries. The military alliance includes troops from West African countries Nigeria, Niger, Cameroon, Chad and Benin.Issoufou said Niger’s mostly Muslim population broadly supported the alliance, which he said had notched recent successes fighting Boko Haram, and rejected Boko Haram’s attempts to carve out its own state in the border region.“The successes of this multinational force … can be explained not only by the fact that they are coordinating their information systems and operational forces, but more importantly by the fact that they are supported by the population,” he said.“It shows the population of our countries reject terrorism, reject extremism. The population of our countries reject Boko Haram as a Muslim organization,” he said.Niger, which is also stepping up security against traffickers and jihadi groups bolstered by weapons and fighters from Libya’s conflict to the north, is ranked at the bottom of the U.N. Human Development Index for 2013.Issoufou said he saw poverty as an important reason some people join militant ranks, but he said efforts to combat it have been hindered by fluctuations in donor support, rapid population growth and climate shocks.He said he had held meetings with the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank during his trip to discuss financing.Issoufou won election in 2011 in the uranium-producing country following a military coup that removed the previous president, Mamadou Tandja, widely criticized for overseeing rampant state-level corruption.Issoufou touts advances in transparency and press freedoms since coming to power, and is expected to seek re-election in mid-2016.