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Ghost Dog

Profile Information

Gender: Do not display
Hometown: Canary Islands Archipelago
Home country: Spain
Member since: Wed Apr 19, 2006, 01:59 PM
Number of posts: 16,692

About Me

A Brit many years in Spain, Catalunya, Baleares, Canarias. Cooperative member. Geography. Ecology. Cartography. Software. Sound Recording. Music Production. Languages & Literature. History.

Journal Archives

Volcanic activity?

... a newly-published study by Massachusetts Institute of Technology scientists reveals that relatively small volcanic eruptions may be mitigating the increases in output of greenhouse gases and slow the rate of global warming by as much as half. In fact, the effect of such volcanic activity may help to explain why the pace of warming has decreased in recent years and fallen short of matching the level predicted by the amount of carbon going into the atmosphere.

The paper, published in the journal Geophysical Review Letters, focused on the effect of the aerosol particles that are pumped into the atmosphere. The scientists used balloons, laser radar, and ground-based measurements to calculate the impact.

The scientists discovered that about a dozen modest-sized eruptions worldwide over the past 15 years may have reduced the warming effect of greenhouse gas emissions by about 0.005 to 0.12 degrees Celsius. Over roughly that same time period, the rate of global warming has slowed, though surface temperatures have continued to rise.

Volcanic eruptions spew sulfur dioxide, which in the atmosphere forms tiny droplets of sulfuric acid — also known as volcanic aerosols, which can block sunlight. While previous studies have noted that effect from small volcanoes, the new study found that the effect is bigger than previously thought...

/... http://news.discovery.com/earth/global-warming/are-volcanic-eruptions-slowing-global-warming-150112.htm

France labour law reforms strikes & protests

Some say French people are warming up ready for another May '68-style Spring...

France was set for a fresh day of protests over labour reforms on Thursday, in yet another challenge for the embattled government of President François Hollande.

The protests led by student groups and labour unions coincide with strikes by air traffic controllers that are expected to cause travel chaos for thousands of passengers...

... Hollande has vowed not to run again if he cannot put a dent in the country's stubbornly high unemployment figures – long stuck at around 10 percent – and hoped the modest labour reforms would encourage firms to hire more people.

But pressure from the street and parliament's back benches caused the government to water down the proposals so that they only apply to large firms.

A recent poll found that 58 percent of the French public still opposed the measures...


Paris commuters along with rail and air passengers around France were facing disruption and delays due to strikes by transport workers on Thursday. Here’s all the latest.

Main details:

Three quarters of Metro services running in Paris
RER and Francilien commuter trains running half of usual services
20 percent of flights cancelled out of Paris Orly airport
Paris Charles de Gaulle airport to see delays rather than cancellations
Nearly 400km of traffic jams on roads around Paris
TGV services and regional TER trains also hit by strike
This useful map shows walking times between Metro stations in Paris
Protests planned around the country against labour reforms
Eiffel Tower closed as workers join strike
Good luck...

... Transport is only one area affected by Thursay's national day of protest against the labour reforms as school pupils and students, hospital workers in Paris, postal workers and members of the press and TV also on strike.

Postal services and TV scheduling will likely be disrupted. While printers also joining the strike means there'll be no copies of French newspapers on Thursday....


Some reform-minded unions have given their support to proposed changes to France’s famously stringent labour laws, but tens of thousands of students and workers took to the streets a week ago, angry over plans to make it easier for struggling companies to fire workers.

Cars were burned in Paris and more than 30 people arrested as protesters clashed with police, who responded with tear gas.

Organisers have threatened an even bigger day of demonstrations on Thursday. Parliament is set to vote on the reforms in late April or early May.


... The bill puts almost all aspects of France’s strictly codified rules on labour relations up for negotiation. Everything from the maximum number of work hours to overtime pay to holidays would be open to scrutiny, but the main focus is on plans to limit the cost of laying off workers.

The government and business leaders say the reforms will encourage companies to give more workers permanent contracts rather than temporary ones, but unions and some on the left of the Socialist Party disagree and instead see a threat to job security.

The proposal technically maintains the 35-hour workweek but allows workers to negotiate longer working schdules, up to 46 hours per week for 16 weeks. In "exceptional circumstances", employees could work up to 60 hours a week.

To allow companies to deal with busy periods, one measure would allow employees to work more than 35 hours without being paid overtime in exchange for more days off. Other measures would relax the rules on layoffs and working from home and at night...


Does this refer to the entire zone China claims?

US State Department cable in relation to Argentina's 2009 submission

to the UNCLCS:




2009 August 11, 19:51 (Tuesday)

Canonical ID:


Original Classification:


Current Classification:


Handling Restrictions

-- Not Assigned --

Character Count:


Executive Order:

-- Not Assigned --




AR - Argentina | PHSA - Political Affairs--High Seas Affairs | PREL - Political Affairs--External Political Relations | PTBS


-- Not Assigned --


-- Not Assigned --


TE - Telegram (cable)

Office Origin:

-- N/A or Blank --

Office Action:

-- N/A or Blank --

Archive Status:

-- Not Assigned --


Argentina Buenos Aires


-- Not Assigned --


Australia Canberra | France Paris | Group Destinations Southern Common Market (MERCOSUR-Mercado Común del Sur) |New Zealand Auckland | Norway Oslo |Russia Moscow | Secretary of State |United Kingdom London | United Nations (New York)


1. (SBU) ADCM and ESTCouns delivered ref A points to the Argentine MFA's Director General for Political Coordination, Rafael Grossi, a close advisor to FM Jorge Taiana. Grossi was pleased with the USG proposal regarding Argentina's submission of its claim to the Antarctic continental platform (ref B), which he labeled a "very good outcome," and said he could reciprocate with "something that will provide comfort to our partners." The MFA had held a long meeting on this issue on August 4, he said, where the Foreign Minister had approved the exact wording of Argentina's oral communication to the Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf (CLCS) on August 24. (Text follows below. Spanish and English versions have been e-mailed to the Department.) Grossi confirmed he would travel to New York to represent the GOA at the Commission's hearing and to work with the Chairman and the Secretariat to ensure Argentina's oral statement is included in the written record of the meeting. He offered to meet with USUN.

2. (SBU) Grossi acknowledged that Argentina is "fully aware" that the way its submission to the CLCS had been handled was "not ideal," but he hoped we understood the reasons why the GOA had done so. "We realize we altered the framework (of the 7 plus 2 agreement) and therefore needed to reassure our friends," he said. Grossi was thankful that this "fair compromise" had avoided an open disagreement. He mentioned that he would meet with the Russians, the Australians, New Zealanders and British later in the day to share with them the proposed language just presented to us. He planned on seeing the French and Norwegians on August 6. Grossi also noted that the British Ambassador had forewarned the MFA of the United Kingdom's forthcoming objection to the Argentine presentation, so that it would not come as a surprise to the GOA.

3. (SBU) Text of GOA statement to the CLCS follows. Begin text. Argentina made a full submission of the outer limit of its continental shelf, including the natural prolongation appurtenant to the continent, the islands and the Argentina Antarctic Sector. However, as Note NU/139/2009/600 states, the Argentine Republic takes into account the circumstances of the region south of 60 degrees South latitude and the special legal and political status of Antarctica under the provisions of the Antarctic Treaty, including article IV thereof, and the Rules of Procedure of the Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf. Therefore, and in accordance with its rules, the Commission could not take any action, for the time being, with regard to the information in this Submission that relates to continental shelf appurtenant to Antarctica.

End Text. KELLY

So Macri and his minister appear to be exaggerating,

in light of the highlighted text above, the meaning of the UNCLCS's recommendations for disemination by the media:


... President Mauricio Macri referred to the "new map of Argentina,"  following a resolution by the United Nations Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf (CLCS), as a State`s policy. 
"Some weeks ago, the United Nations Commission  on the Limits of the Continental Shelf approved Argentina`s request unanimously, to extend our continental platform," wrote the President on his  official Facebook account.   

According to the report, Argentina is granted the extension of sovereignty over the maritime territory in the area. The country was granted status as the “coastal State” and, as such, gained rights to exploit its natural resources.

Here is the UN CLCS press release:

Commission on Limits of Continental Shelf Concludes Fortieth Session



NEW YORK, 28 March 2016 (Division for Ocean Affairs and the Law of the Sea) — The Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf held its fortieth session at United Nations Headquarters from 1 February to 18 March 2016.  Besides the two weeks of plenary meetings (8 to 12 February and 7 to 11 March), the Commission, working through its subcommissions, devoted five weeks to the technical examination of submissions at the Geographic Information Systems laboratories and other technical facilities of the Division for Ocean Affairs and the Law of the Sea.

The active subcommissions continued their work during the fortieth session.  These were the subcommissions established for consideration of the submissions made by Brazil in respect of the Brazilian Southern Region (partial revised submission); Norway in respect of Bouvetøya and Dronning Maud Land; South Africa in respect of the mainland of the territory of South Africa; the Federated States of Micronesia, Papua New Guinea and Solomon Islands, jointly, concerning the Ontong Java Plateau; France and South Africa, jointly, in the area of the Crozet Archipelago and the Prince Edward Islands; Kenya; Mauritius in the region of Rodrigues Island; and Nigeria.  Some subcommissions met with the respective delegations.

At the plenary level, the Commission adopted, without a vote, two sets of recommendations, namely the recommendations in respect to the submission made by Argentina, and the recommendations in respect to the submission made by Iceland in respect of the Ægir Basin area and in the western and southern parts of Reykjanes Ridge.  With regard to the recommendations in respect of the submission made by Argentina, it is recalled that, previously, the Commission had already decided that it was not in a position to consider and qualify those parts of the submission that were subject to dispute and those parts that were related to the continental shelf appurtenant to Antarctica (see CLCS/64, paras. 76 and 77 and CLCS/76 para. 57).

The Commission also continued, at the plenary level, its consideration of draft recommendations in respect to the submission made by the Cook Islands, concerning the Manihiki Plateau and commenced its consideration of draft recommendations in respect to the submission made by Uruguay.

The Russian Federation, headed by Sergei E. Donskoi, Minister for Natural Resources and Environment, presented its partial revised submission in respect of the Arctic Ocean before the plenary of the Commission.  The Commission assigned the examination of the submission to the subcommission established to consider the submission made by the Russian Federation on 20 December 2001.

Also, the Commission established a new subcommission to consider the submission made by Seychelles concerning the Northern Plateau Region, which has begun its work.

The Commission decided that it would hold three weeks of plenary meetings during the forty-third session in order to consider draft recommendations submitted to the plenary before the term of office of the current members expires in June 2017.

Details of the fortieth session will be reflected in the Statement by the Chairperson of the Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf on the progress of work in the Commission, which will be issued as document CLCS/93.

For additional information on the work of the Commission, see the website of the Division atwww.un.org/Depts/los/index.htm.


For information media. Not an official record.

It is a very large continental shelf.

(BBC).US Election 2016: Sanders wins Washington, Alaska and Hawaii

Source: BBC

... The biggest prize was Washington state, but Mr Sanders also won in Alaska and Hawaii, boosting his campaign. He took at least 70% of the vote in all three states.

Mr Sanders thanked his supporters and said his "campaign has the momentum", but he still faces a tough task to overhaul Mrs Clinton.

After Saturday's caucuses, she leads Mr Sanders by 1,243 delegates to 975, the Associated Press count shows.

When superdelegates - party officials who can support either candidate - who have so far declared their allegiance are included, Mrs Clinton is ahead by 1,712 to 1,004 in the race to reach 2,383 delegates...

Read more: http://www.bbc.com/news/election-us-2016-35903119

Article title above, but appears on BBC front page thus:

Think like the enemy: The scariest thing about Brussels (Simon Jenkins, the Guardian)

Think like the enemy. Let’s suppose I am an Islamic State terrorist. I don’t do bombs or bullets. I leave the dirty work to the crazies in the basement. My job is what happens next. It is to turn carnage into consequences, body parts into politics. I am a consultant terrorist. I wear a suit, not explosives. A blood-stained concourse is a means to an end. The end is power.

This week I had another success. I converted a squalid psychopathological act into a warrior-evoking, population-terrifying, policy-changing event. I sent a continent into shock. Famous politicians dropped everything to shower me with cliches. Crowned heads deluged me with glorious odium.

I measure my success in column inches and television hours, in ballooning security budgets, butchered liberties, amended laws and – my ultimate goal – Muslim persecuted and recruited to our cause. I deal not in actions but in reactions. I am a manipulator of politics. I work through the idiocies of my supposed enemies...


I find:

At the Guardian:

... While Trump looks on course to end the campaign with the most delegates of any candidate, he may not have the 1,237 required to win the GOP nomination outright. That would force the billionaire to make the case for his presidency in a contested convention where party elites, many of whom who are hostile to his candidacy, could hold sway.

With Trump’s projected delegate count expected to come down to the wire, results such as his loss to Cruz in Utah could, later down the line, prove pivotal...

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