first_imgCoal plant retirements undercut Trump bailout plans FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Clean Technica:President Trump has publicly made quite a few comments about bringing coal jobs back, but his verbiage isn’t making much of a dent in the declining coal industry. In fact, a very large number of American coal power plants will be closing in 2018. “The real story I believe is in coal retirements. [T]he fundamentals of the economics of coal have gotten worse, with costs going up, while the competition for coal — that is, gas, wind and solar — has all gotten cheaper,” said Bruce Hamilton, a director at Navigant.Natural gas costs less than coal, solar power is at its most affordable, wind power can be more affordable than new coal, and energy storage is emerging to support renewables.“Coal jobs aren’t coming back, due to market forces, not due to regulation. Natural gas is cheaper and more plentiful,” explained James Van Nostrand, director of the Center for Energy and Sustainable Development at West Virginia University College of Law.To make matters worse, the President seems to be very uninformed about the coal industry. “Trump claims West Virginia is exporting “clean coal” to China. But this is wrong for two reasons. One, in 2015 and 2016, West Virginia exported virtually no coal to China. Two, there is no such thing as “clean coal.”More: Coal power plants retiring quickly during Trump administrationlast_img read more

first_imgFor this news app, ProPublica compared New York counties’ cumulative tobacco securitization proceeds to actual and projected payments under the national tobacco settlement of 1998. The app allows users to explore different scenarios for the payments over time and see how long it takes for the payments to match or exceed the proceeds counties received from “securitizing” — that is, selling their stream of tobacco settlement money to debt investors in return for upfront cash.Because securitization involves taking a discounted lump-sum payment upfront in return for future tobacco payments, such deals by definition meant counties would receive less settlement money than they would if they collected year-by-year. This concept is known as the “time value of money” and it basically reflects the fact that a dollar received today is worth more than a dollar tomorrow because it can be invested to earn interest.However, the amount of the discount was not just a factor of time. It also reflected much interest investors demanded to be paid in return for buying bonds payable from counties’ annual settlement money; after all, if payments fell, there might not be enough money to repay the debt. As noted in research by Craig Johnson, associate professor of public finance at Indiana University in Bloomington, the decision to securitize led many governments to “pay a high premium” to investors willing to take on this risk.The size of the premium is reflected in the dollar difference between the cumulative payments counties could have received if they collected year-by-year and what they ended up getting under their securitization deals. The bigger the gap, the more likely it is that the county overestimated the riskiness of the annual payments and paid too much interest to investors on its upfront borrowing against the settlement money. The smaller the gap, the more likely it is that the county priced the risk correctly and received more money for taxpayers out of the securitization.Here is how the app came together:We obtained historical tobacco settlement payment data from the New York Attorney General’s Office, which tracks the annual payments from tobacco companies to the state, New York City (which comprises five counties), and the remaining 57 counties that receive the money. The data includes the actual payment received by each county through 2014 and closely matches national-level data tracked by the National Association of Attorneys General.ProPublica projected future payments to the counties using a cash flow model disclosed in a bond prospectus for the most recent tobacco securitization completed in New York state, Niagara County’s $44.3 million tobacco bond sale, which closed on Sept. 24, 2014. The model projected annual payments due to New York through 2040, taking into account inflation and other adjustments, such as an assumed average annual cigarette consumption decline of 3 percent as forecast by the consulting firm IHS Global Insight.These underwriting assumptions could prove wrong: In the past, cigarette consumption — a major driver of the annual tobacco settlement payments — has decreased more than predicted by IHS for various tobacco bond deals, many of which are now headed for default. To account for this, our app allows users to explore the effect of more pessimistic average annual cigarette consumption declines of 4 percent and 5 percent, based on projections by Herbert J. Sims & Co., a brokerage firm that tracks tobacco bonds. To account for the time value of future payments, the app also allows users to dial in a discount factor, which reflects the interest rate at which the money could be invested over time. The higher the interest rate, the less counties’ future payments are worth today. Users can select from a range of 0 to 8 percent annual interest.Since securitization proceeds were most commonly used to fund capital projects that would otherwise have to be funded using municipal debt, the discount rate also reflects the opportunity cost to governments of accepting the annual payments, instead of securitizing them. The discount rate defaults to 4 percent, which reflects the 30-year interest rate for municipal borrowing by BAA-rated government issuers as of early October 2014, based data from the Thomson Reuters Municipal Market Monitor.We identified the 40 New York counties (including five in New York City) that securitized using data from Thomson Reuters, the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board’s EMMA database, and interviews with county officials. Proceeds received from the tobacco bonds they sold were plotted using amounts disclosed in official statements for each transaction. In cases of partial refundings — transactions which used a portion of the money raised to repay previously-issued bonds — ProPublica only counted the net new proceeds obtained by the counties. The amounts are a conservative estimate of what the counties received, since they not do account for transaction fees and other deductions from the proceeds, such as funding reserve accounts for bond investors.Most counties securitized 100 percent of their annual payments. That means all their future tobacco money was pledged to investors until the bonds are repaid. In cases where counties securitized less than 100 percent of their payments, ProPublica added the remainder to the counties’ cumulative receipts.The bond issuers typically used “residual” structures in early securitization deals done in 1999, 2000 and 2001. These entitled them to receive any settlement money left after meeting required annual principal and interest payments on their outstanding tobacco bonds. Most of these residual payments ceased in 2004; ProPublica excluded residual payments from its analysis. In later securitizations, counties primarily utilized “turbo” structures, which reserved any leftover settlement money for repayment of the debt, rather than letting county governments keep it. That way, debt repayment would accelerate, returning the payment streams to the county governments sooner.ProPublica did not attempt to predict when the counties’ tobacco bonds might get paid off. But given that cigarette sales are falling more than expected when most of the deals were done, many of the counties’ tobacco bonds are now unlikely to repay ahead of their final maturities, even under “turbo” structures. While maturity dates vary, all of the counties have at least some tobacco bonds that aren’t due until after 2040, the last year in the cash flow model disclosed in recent securitization done by Niagara County.ProPublica is a Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative newsroom. Sign up for their newsletter. Sign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York last_img read more

first_imgMany credit unions take a leap of faith when it comes to developing prospecting strategies. But effective marketing strategies are developed from deep analysis with clearly identified objectives. They are constantly evolving—no setting and forgetting. So, what are the basics of optimizing your prospecting efforts?Establish GoalsUnfortunately, far too many discussions begin with establishing targeting criteria before program goals are set. This leads to confusion.Developing targeting criteria is kind of like squeezing a balloon—when you restrict one end, the other tends to expand. Imagine the effect of maximizing response rates when soliciting new loans. If no other criteria are considered, you could end up targeting high-risk individuals who cannot get approved elsewhere.Obviously, we’re not interested in increasing originations at all cost; risk must be understood as well. But this is where things get complicated. Lower-risk consumers tend to be the most coveted, get the best offers and therefore have lower response rates and margins. 9SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr continue reading »last_img read more

first_imgThe board announced the cancellation in a post on the Hometown 4th Festival Facebook page. The organizers of the event said that they are hoping to plan a smaller festival in the future when it is safer, in honor of essential workers who have risked their lives during the pandemic. The event was supposed to be held in Neahwa Park but was canceled due to COVID-19 concerns and the inability to acquire a permit from the New York State Health department needed to hold a mass gathering in a park. They also mentioned that they will still be holding their Great Otsego Outdoor Challenge as well as their Super Smash Brothers Play at Home Video Game Tournament.center_img Additionally, they are trying to collaborate with the City of Oneonta to provide entertainment on Main Street during the reopening of local businesses. ONEONTA, N.Y. (WBNG) — The board of First Night Oneonta announced that the annual Hometown 4th of July Festival has been canceled on Tuesday.last_img read more

first_imgBTN: Can you tell me a little about the property? What is it that makes it so special?SEW: Bunaken Oasis is the first truly luxurious resort on Bunaken Island, offering stunning views across to the mainland, a five-star dining experience, a panoramic freshwater swimming, purpose-built spa and unparalleled levels of service.  Diving in the Bunaken Marine National Park is wonderful.  – Advertisement – The corals, and marine life – especially the turtles – justify the international reputation of this incredible area. However, at Bunaken Oasis, we are aiming to build on the reputation of the Marine Park even further, offering an exceptional holiday experience for non-divers and divers alike.  We are the first resort on Bunaken to have a truly modern infrastructure. For example with water makers and UV water treatment, meaning all the water in the resort is fresh water – including showers and the swimming pool.  However, beyond the physical design of oasis, it is the staff and their commitment to making every guest feel truly special, that elevates the Bunaken Oasis experience for all of our guests.BTN: How useful are accolades such as the World Travel Awards in promoting the property to a global hospitality audience?SEW: The World Travel Awards are universally recognised as a measure of exceptional standards.  To have won this award for the third year in succession is phenomenal for the team and it will be core to our marketing focus over the next 12 months.  All of our staff are incredibly proud of working for oasis, and receiving this reward for the third year will be valued be each and every one of themBTN: How would you describe the mood in Indonesian hospitality as we move into 2021 – have there been signs of a recovery as we look ahead?SEW: To be honest, internationally, it is all looking a little bleak at the moment.  However, we must assume that the travel industry will begin to return to normal in the next year or so, and we are working to ensure that we will be ready.We are all facing challenging times ahead.  However, we have taken the last few months to ensure that Bunaken Oasis is fit and well to face the coming months.  We all want the travel industry to recover, however, at oasis, our focus has naturally been on the safety of our guests and staff, and training for the “new normal” is the current primary focus at Bunaken Oasis, implementing special measure where necessary into our standard procedures, prior to our re-opening on December 1st.  We are extremely fortunate that, as we are an exclusive resort, we have always offered a distanced experience for all of our guests.  Our cottages, restaurant, bar and, most importantly, the diving or snorkelling experience were all originally designed to offer a spacious and special experienceBunaken Oasis is ready to welcome guests back to this incredible Marine National Park.More InformationBunaken Oasis redefines diving in Indonesia.Positioned very much at the luxury end of the spectrum, the aim of the hotel is to provide a five-star experience while keeping its ecological footprint to a minimum.Find out more on the official website. With Bunaken Oasis Dive Resort & Spa having been recognised as among the best in Asia by the World Travel Awards, Breaking Travel News here catches up with owners, Simon and Elaine Wallace, to discover more about this one-of-a-kind propertyBreaking Travel News: Congratulations – Bunaken Oasis Dive Resort & Spa has just been honoured with the title of Indonesia’s Leading Dive Resort at the World Travel Awards – how does it feel to have won?- Advertisement – Simon and Elaine Wallace: We are delighted to have won Indonesia’s Leading Dive Resort for the third year in succession.  In recent years, we have tried to raise the profile and reputation of Bunaken and to help to establish this incredible location as a luxury destination for divers and tech-divers, as well as non-divers.  This recognition from the World Travel Awards is fantastic, not just for us, but also for our staff, who are extremely proud of Bunaken Oasis. – Advertisement –center_img – Advertisement – OlderBreaking Travel News interview: Elena Muntoni, brand manager, Delphina hotels & resortslast_img read more

first_imgGary Player: “I don’t know how far the ball can go, I don’t know what the limit may be, but don’t be surprised if you see them hit it 500 yards because these guys are so big and so strong. It’s frightening” By Keith JacksonLast Updated: 12/11/20 5:46pm – Advertisement – Get Sky Sports Golf for just £10 a month All four days of The Masters exclusively live. Get our £10 golf offer. Find out more here. Gary Player believes that golfers will continue to increase hitting distance and feels we could one day see players hitting the ball 500 yards – Advertisement – – Advertisement – Bryson DeChambeau 'has taken power to a new level' Bryson DeChambeau 'has taken power to a new level'

first_imgPOTSDAM Transport (ViP) ordered a fleet of 48 modular Combino trams from Siemens Verkehrstechnik on December 12. They will be delivered in annual batches of four between 1998 and 2009.The Potsdam version is 30·5m long and 2·3m wide, with 74 seats and room for 110 standees at 4/m2. Powered trucks are fitted at each end and a non-driving truck supports the centre module with pantograph (below). Empty weight will be 31 tonnes. Siemens was bidding against Adtranz, which was offering a 70% low-floor Variobahn, and DWA Bautzen working with MGB and Kiepe Elektrik. The Siemens Combino bid and the offer from DWA were closest, and despite political pressure at the Brandenburg Land level to give preference to cars ‘with a high local content’, the ViP board decided to adhere strictly to European tendering criteria. The final price for the first 12 cars is reported to be DM2·9m each.Berlin Transport will this year complete rebuilding of its 447 Tatra trams. The last Type T6A2 was handed over by Mittenwalder Gerätebau on December 18. olast_img read more

first_imgThe home’s swanky cinema room. The cellar at 17 Ningana St, Fig Tree Pocket, which was bought by Michael PalmerIt’s not the first house Mr Palmer has bought in the street, with the property investor purchasing 10 Ningana St for $1.85 million in early 2016.This is brings the number of properties Mr Palmer owns into double digits, at 10 residential addresses. The pool sits near the Brisbane River.That house was the former home of Linc Energy founder, Peter Bond, and its sale was second only to the suburb record of $8.25 million for 15 Ningana St, which was sold in 2014.The 17 Ningana St riverfront residence has luxury inclusions such as a 6000 bottle temperature controlled wine cellar, a gym, sauna, tennis court and pool.More from newsParks and wildlife the new lust-haves post coronavirus16 hours agoNoosa’s best beachfront penthouse is about to hit the market16 hours agoAnd the mansion that Clive Palmer bought at 36 Needham St, Fig Tree PocketThe majority of living is across a single level, with four bedrooms, four bathrooms and several swanky living areas.There is also a self-contained unit on a separate level, marketed as, “Ideal for the nanny, au-pair, grandparents or older child”. The property boasts a tennis/basketball court. 17 Ningana St, Fig Tree PocketMICHAEL Palmer, son of embattled businessman and politician Clive Palmer, has tacked on another property to his fast-expanding portfolio.Mr Palmer dropped an eye-watering $5.1 million dollars on 17 Ningana St at Fig Tree Pocket — the second highest sale in the suburb this year. The son of Clive Palmer has dropped $5.1 million on this Fig Tree Pocket houseThe most expensive property sold in Fig Tree Pocket this year was, in fact, bought by his father, with the purchase of 36 Needham St at $7.5 million. Inside the home.That includes two Sunshine Coast properties, three canal and oceanfront Paradise Point homes, and five Brisbane residences.Mr Palmer also co-owns a commercial property at Jandowae, about 300km west of Brisbane, with his sister Emily. The home’s grand entrance. The property’s grand study.last_img read more

first_imgSir Alex Ferguson believes there is no quick fix to improving the standard of youth football in England. However, Ferguson knows the solutions are not easy, with English football still paying the price for what he feels was the ill-conceived academy system, which limited the amount of time clubs were allowed to work with young players. “It is a big challenge,” Ferguson told the BBC. “If you look at the culture of Brazil, kids start playing almost as soon as they are born. “Creating that culture in Britain is important. “The start of the academies was one of the worst things that happened. You could only coach a player for an hour or an hour and a half.” Ferguson cited the example of legendary winger Stanley Matthews, whose professional career extended until he was 50, as evidence of what could be achieved if youngsters were allowed more time to develop their skills. “Stanley Matthews was born in a period where they had the worst diet ever in English life, the 1930s,” the former United boss said. “Yet he played until he was 50. “When he was running up and down the beach at Blackpool with a ball every day for hours and hours, no-one said it was bad for him. “Nowadays, they don’t have enough time with a ball from a very early age. Football Association chairman Greg Dyke has set up a commission aimed at trying to establish the root cause of a dramatic reduction of young English players getting their chance in the Barclays Premier League. It has already come under fire for the lack of ethnic minorities among the names that were initially released last week, although Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand has since been added to the list. “If they create that there is no reason to think they cannot become a great nation again.” Ferguson is even more concerned about his native Scotland, whose chances of qualifying for a major tournament appear increasingly remote. Yet he feels hope does exist in the ongoing search for ideas. “I have great concerns about Scotland but they are trying hard to get to the grass roots,” Ferguson said. “They are coming up with a lot of different ideas now but it is going to take time. “The thing about starting something is that you have to see it through. That is what Greg Dyke will need to do.” Press Associationlast_img read more

first_img Shaneshill’s rider would relish a rematch on a sounder surface. “I’d say we ran into a very good horse, but it was a little bit disappointing,” Walsh told Racing UK. “No More Heroes is a very good horse, but I wouldn’t mind another crack at him. I would probably make more use of Shaneshill. He ran in my hands all the way, then missed the third-last and I had to get after him sooner than I wanted. “I probably landed in front plenty soon enough, but on another day on better ground it would definitely suit Shaneshill. “I wouldn’t give up on him yet.” Press Association Ruby Walsh believes it is far too early to give up on Shaneshill following his odds-on reverse at Navan last Sunday.center_img Runner-up in last season’s Champion Bumper at the Cheltenham Festival before going one better in the equivalent race at Punchestown, the Willie Mullins-trained five-year-old made the perfect start over hurdles at Fairyhouse last month. He was unsurprisingly a hot favourite to make it two from two in the Navan Novice Hurdle but after hitting the front, was reeled in by Gordon Elliott’s equally exciting novice No More Heroes. last_img read more