Green News

Sunday, August 25, 2019 4:08:38 PM

A Georgia attorney thought a man hit his Mercedes with a golf ball. He ran him over and killed him, DA saysAn Atlanta attorney has been charged with murder after he allegedly struck and killed a real estate investor he says hit his car with a golf ball.

Sunday, August 25, 2019 2:00:00 PM

Bat poo no longer blights church and interrupts service, as worshippers rejoice over new schemeEnticing the next generation through their ancient doors, keeping donations topped up and ensuring that the organ is tuned usually rank high among any church’s list of priorities. For one congregation in Leicester, however, their problems have been somewhat more ungodly. For years, members of All Saints Church in Braunston-in-Rutland have been plagued by faeces dropping from the ceiling where a 500-strong colony of bats now reside.  This has meant that instead of praying or enjoying the 1,000-year-old church building, parishioners have been slipping on its floors, art and furniture has been covered in sheeting and volunteer wardens have spent hours scouring pews and floors of bat excrement. Now, however, the congregation remains clean and dry. Following a pioneering new scheme, entitled the Bats in Churches project, work has been done to fill the gaps in the ceiling to prevent faeces and urine soaking through without harming the animals. It is illegal to stop bats - which are a protected species - from reaching their roost, leaving many churches unable to patch up holes in their walls and doors which bats use for access. As a result, many congregations across the country have often found themselves at the receiving end of their sporadic, plunging excrement.  Gail Rudge at All Saints Church at Braunston in Rutland, where bats have roosted and caused damage  Credit: ./Photo Copyright John Robertson, 2017.  All Saints Church was one of the first to benefit from £3.8million of Heritage Lottery Funds to reduce the impact of bats on the buildings across the UK. It is one of around 100 churches, which hosts a large bat roost, which is now reaping the rewards of clean floors and clean congregants.  Sue Willetts, church warden, told the BBC: "Before, we had covers down on the floors to collect the droppings. "We had to clean the pews every time, it took an hour before every single service. Now we use the church how its meant to be." Mrs Willetts said that the bat problem “snowballed” five years ago when an old chimney in the village collapsed, prompting its residents to move into the church instead. She added that after signing up to the scheme, ecologists found gaps between the roof and the church and it was possible to block these gaps without harming the bats. She estimated that the church has received £100,000 worth of scaffolding, building, and ecological study works since applying for funding from the project. Rosemary Riddell, from the Bat in Churches project, said work at All Saints Church "has enabled us to sort of roll out solutions to other churches similar to Braunstone and it's really helped us to learn from their experiences". "[The church] was one of our guinea pigs and we're grateful for their engagement and involvement," she added. More than 100 churches have applied for the Bats and Churches Partnership, which monitors bats to see whether church managers could be allowed to take action to protect their historic buildings. It is funded by a multi-million-pound National Lottery grant.  All Saints Church at Braunston in Rutland, Credit: ./Photo Copyright John Robertson, 2017.  During the General Synod earlier this summer, The Telegraph reported that bats in the belfry were being mooted as a potential “tool for mission”.  Bishops visiting York were asked to answer more than 100 questions involving an array of controversial topics such as reporting abuse during confession, non-disclosure agreements and ethical investments in large technology companies; and one was on bats.  The Archdeacon of Lincoln, the Venerable Gavin Kirk, asked for an update on the progress of the Bats in Churches project, and “how those afflicted by bats may find out more about it?”  Sir Tony Baldry, chair of the Church Buildings Council, responded: “A number of projects involve volunteers from the community in managing and even exploiting the presence of bats, for school projects and the like. Bats might even prove to be a tool for mission, if we can get them to behave politely.” Asked how bats may prove to be tools for mission, Sir Tony told the media: “We have to work out how to encourage them out of the belfry to roost in bat boxes in churchyards. “They could then be of interest for projects for schools and A-level students studying the life cycles of bats and so on. They are part of God's creation and are interesting mammals. “There are serious challenges. They poo and urinate over large parts of the church, it is very distressing for parishioners on a Sunday to have to clear a whole load of bat poo off the altar and pews and so for some churches that bats have made almost unusable.”

Sunday, August 25, 2019 12:59:07 PM

Drone war takes flight, raising stakes in Iran, US tensionsFrom the vast deserts of Saudi Arabia to the crowded neighborhoods of Beirut, a drone war has taken flight across the wider Middle East, raising the stakes in the ongoing tensions between the U.S. and Iran. Since the U.S. withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal last year, there has been an increasing tempo of attacks and alleged threats, notably this weekend, from unmanned aircraft flown by Tehran's and Washington's allies in the region. The appeal of the aircraft — they risk no pilots and can be small enough to evade air-defense systems — fueled their rapid use amid the maximum pressure campaigns of Iran and the U.S. As these strikes become more frequent, the risk of unwanted escalation becomes greater.

Sunday, August 25, 2019 11:32:21 AM

Lindsey Graham warns Trump not to pull all U.S. forces out of AfghanistanTrump has long been eager to withdraw American troops out of the country.

Sunday, August 25, 2019 9:39:00 AM

Prince Andrew took flight on Epstein private  jet with Russian modelIn 1999, prince and Anna Malova were among nine people on previously undisclosed flight from the US Virgin Islands to FloridaPrince Andrew in 2013. Photograph: Koji Sasahara/APPrince Andrew took a previously undisclosed flight on Jeffrey Epstein’s private jet with a group that included a Russian model.Andrew and Anna Malova, then 27, were among nine people on Epstein’s plane for a trip from the US Virgin Islands to Florida in February 1999, according to flight logs.Malova was later jailed in the US for failing to comply with a court-ordered programme relating to her use of prescription painkillers.The discovery of the flight added to pressure on Andrew over his friendship with Epstein, who this month was found dead at 66 in his New York jail cell while awaiting trial for sex trafficking. The city medical examiner ruled the death a suicide.Andrew has vehemently denied any wrongdoing. He said in a statement on Saturday that he did not “see, witness or suspect any behaviour of the sort” that led to Epstein’s 2008 conviction for soliciting sex from an underage girl. The prince said it was a mistake to have continued seeing Epstein after that.The February 1999 flight, first reported by the Sunday Times, was recorded in logs kept by Epstein’s pilots that were filed to a US court by Virginia Roberts Giuffre, who has alleged she was used as a sex slave by Epstein.The flight log was among almost 2,000 pages of records released by a federal judge in New York this month. It was missing from the notorious 73 pages of previously released Epstein flight logs, some of which also named Andrew as a passenger.The group flew from St Thomas, the airport closest to Epstein’s private island, Little St James, to Palm Beach in Florida, where Epstein had a mansion. The disgraced money manager is accused of abusing underage girls at both properties and other sites.There is no suggestion Malova or Andrew were involved in any wrongdoing during the trip.They and Epstein were joined on the flight by others including Epstein’s close friend Ghislaine Maxwell, a daughter of the late financier Robert Maxwell who has been accused by several victims of assisting Epstein’s abuse of girls. Maxwell denies this.Also present was Gwendolyn Beck, a former financial industry executive and friend of Epstein, who made a failed run for Congress in Virginia in 2014. Epstein donated more than $12,000 to Beck’s campaign.Malova did not respond to an email. A former Miss Russia, she moved to the US and made it to the final of the 1998 Miss Universe beauty pageant, which was then owned by Donald Trump – another former friend of Epstein.In 2010 she was accused of forging a prescription for Vicodin from a stolen doctor’s pad. She was jailed in May 2011 after repeatedly arriving late for a court-mandated drug programme. She denied all the charges against her.Last week it was alleged that Andrew was once seen receiving a foot massage from “two young well-dressed Russian women” at Epstein’s home in Manhattan. The claim was made in an email by the literary agent John Brockman, another former Epstein associate.Last week also saw the release of video of Andrew at Epstein's New York City home in 2010.

Sunday, August 25, 2019 9:34:38 AM

Exclusive: Iran says it will not negotiate missile work, wants to export more oilIran wants to export a minimum of 700,000 barrels per day of its oil and ideally up to 1.5 million bpd if the West wants to negotiate with Tehran to save a 2015 nuclear deal, two Iranian officials and one diplomat told Reuters on Sunday. A second official said "Iran's ballistic missile program cannot and will not be negotiated.

Sunday, August 25, 2019 9:27:29 AM

G7 nations close to agreement on tackling Amazon fires: MacronFrench President Emmanuel Macron said on Sunday the leaders of the world's major industrialized nations were close to an agreement on how to help fight the Amazon forest fires and try to repair the devastation. "There’s a real convergence to say: 'let's all agree to help those countries hit by these fires'," he told reporters in Biarritz, which is hosting the annual summit of leaders from the Group of Seven nations. Macron shunted the Amazon fires to the top of the summit agenda after declaring them a global emergency, and kicked off discussions about the disaster at a welcome dinner for fellow leaders on Saturday.

Saturday, August 24, 2019 10:32:37 PM

Journalist killed in MexicoThe head of a Mexican news website was found stabbed to death in the center of the country, authorities said Saturday, the 10th such killing this year. The body of Nevith Condes Jaramillo "was found Saturday morning... showing injuries from a sharp object," the state prosecutor said in a statement. Condes Jaramillo, 42, was the head of a local news site in Tejupilco and was also an announcer on a community radio station.

Saturday, August 24, 2019 9:21:33 PM

Iranian oil tanker pursued by US says it is going to TurkeyAn Iranian-flagged oil tanker pursued by the U.S. amid heightened tensions between Tehran and Washington changed its listed destination to a port in Turkey after Greece said it wouldn't risk its relations with America by aiding it. The crew of the oil tanker Adrian Darya 1, formerly known as the Grace 1, on Saturday updated its listed destination in its Automatic Identification System to Mersin, Turkey, a port city in the country's south and home to an oil terminal.

Saturday, August 24, 2019 7:16:47 PM

South Korea begins annual war games to defend against JapanSouth Korea Sunday began two days of war games to practise defending disputed islands off its east coast against an unlikely attack from Japan, further stoking tensions between the Asian neighbours. The annual drills come just days after Seoul terminated a military intelligence-sharing pact with Tokyo, with the countries at loggerheads over Japan's use of forced labour during World War II. The two-day exercise will involve warships and aircraft, the South Korean navy said in a text message without providing more detail.

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