venerdì 18 giugno 2010

E' arrivata la email !!!

Oggi venerdì 18 giugno 2010 è arrivata la email dell'Ufficio Visti per comunicare le procedure finali per il rilascio del visto.

2 anni dopo l'invio dei primi documenti al Bureau d'Immigration du Quebec (tutto senza accenti !!!) abbiamo la sospirata email.

Prime parole all'annuncio dell'email: "Adesso sì che iniziano i casini."

Capitan Quebec proteggici tu.

“Whatever cry we cry is not heard outside of here.”

Far From Gulf, a Spill Scourge 5 Decades Old
by ADAM NOSSITER - New York Times
Published: June 16, 2010

BODO, Nigeria — Big oil spills are no longer news in this vast, tropical land. The Niger Delta, where the wealth underground is out of all proportion with the poverty on the surface, has endured the equivalent of the Exxon Valdez spill every year for 50 years by some estimates. The oil pours out nearly every week, and some swamps are long since lifeless.

Perhaps no place on earth has been as battered by oil, experts say, leaving residents here astonished at the nonstop attention paid to the gusher half a world away in the Gulf of Mexico. It was only a few weeks ago, they say, that a burst pipe belonging to Royal Dutch Shell in the mangroves was finally shut after flowing for two months: now nothing living moves in a black-and-brown world once teeming with shrimp and crab.

Not far away, there is still black crude on Gio Creek from an April spill, and just across the state line in Akwa Ibom the fishermen curse their oil-blackened nets, doubly useless in a barren sea buffeted by a spill from an offshore Exxon Mobil pipe in May that lasted for weeks.

The oil spews from rusted and aging pipes, unchecked by what analysts say is ineffectual or collusive regulation, and abetted by deficient maintenance and sabotage. In the face of this black tide is an infrequent protest — soldiers guarding an Exxon Mobil site beat women who were demonstrating last month, according to witnesses — but mostly resentful resignation.

Small children swim in the polluted estuary here, fishermen take their skiffs out ever farther — “There’s nothing we can catch here,” said Pius Doron, perched anxiously over his boat — and market women trudge through oily streams. “There is Shell oil on my body,” said Hannah Baage, emerging from Gio Creek with a machete to cut the cassava stalks balanced on her head.

That the Gulf of Mexico disaster has transfixed a country and president they so admire is a matter of wonder for people here, living among the palm-fringed estuaries in conditions as abject as any in Nigeria, according to the United Nations. Though their region contributes nearly 80 percent of the government’s revenue, they have hardly benefited from it; life expectancy is the lowest in Nigeria.

“President Obama is worried about that one,” Claytus Kanyie, a local official, said of the gulf spill, standing among dead mangroves in the soft oily muck outside Bodo. “Nobody is worried about this one. The aquatic life of our people is dying off. There used be shrimp. There are no longer any shrimp.”

In the distance, smoke rose from what Mr. Kanyie and environmental activists said was an illegal refining business run by local oil thieves and protected, they said, by Nigerian security forces. The swamp was deserted and quiet, without even bird song; before the spills, Mr. Kanyie said, women from Bodo earned a living gathering mollusks and shellfish among the mangroves.

With new estimates that as many as 2.5 million gallons of oil could be spilling into the Gulf of Mexico each day, the Niger Delta has suddenly become a cautionary tale for the United States.

As many as 546 million gallons of oil spilled into the Niger Delta over the last five decades, or nearly 11 million gallons a year, a team of experts for the Nigerian government and international and local environmental groups concluded in a 2006 report. By comparison, the Exxon Valdez spill in 1989 dumped an estimated 10.8 million gallons of oil into the waters off Alaska.

So the people here cast a jaundiced, if sympathetic, eye at the spill in the gulf. “We’re sorry for them, but it’s what’s been happening to us for 50 years,” said Emman Mbong, an official in Eket.

The spills here are all the more devastating because this ecologically sensitive wetlands region, the source of 10 percent of American oil imports, has most of Africa’s mangroves and, like the Louisiana coast, has fed the interior for generations with its abundance of fish, shellfish, wildlife and crops.

Local environmentalists have been denouncing the spoliation for years, with little effect. “It’s a dead environment,” said Patrick Naagbanton of the Center for Environment, Human Rights and Development in Port Harcourt, the leading city of the oil region.

Though much here has been destroyed, much remains, with large expanses of vibrant green. Environmentalists say that with intensive restoration, the Niger Delta could again be what it once was.

Nigeria produced more than two million barrels of oil a day last year, and in over 50 years thousands of miles of pipes have been laid through the swamps. Shell, the major player, has operations on thousands of square miles of territory, according to Amnesty International. Aging columns of oil-well valves, known as Christmas trees, pop up improbably in clearings among the palm trees. Oil sometimes shoots out of them, even if the wells are defunct.

“The oil was just shooting up in the air, and it goes up in the sky,” said Amstel M. Gbarakpor, youth president in Kegbara Dere, recalling the spill in April at Gio Creek. “It took them three weeks to secure this well.”

How much of the spillage is due to oil thieves or to sabotage linked to the militant movement active in the Niger Delta, and how much stems from poorly maintained and aging pipes, is a matter of fierce dispute among communities, environmentalists and the oil companies.

Caroline Wittgen, a spokeswoman for Shell in Lagos, said, “We don’t discuss individual spills,” but argued that the “vast majority” were caused by sabotage or theft, with only 2 percent due to equipment failure or human error.

“We do not believe that we behave irresponsibly, but we do operate in a unique environment where security and lawlessness are major problems,” Ms. Wittgen said.

Oil companies also contend that they clean up much of what is lost. A spokesman for Exxon Mobil in Lagos, Nigel A. Cookey-Gam, said that the company’s recent offshore spill leaked only about 8,400 gallons and that “this was effectively cleaned up.”

But many experts and local officials say the companies attribute too much to sabotage, to lessen their culpability. Richard Steiner, a consultant on oil spills, concluded in a 2008 report that historically “the pipeline failure rate in Nigeria is many times that found elsewhere in the world,” and he noted that even Shell acknowledged “almost every year” a spill due to a corroded pipeline.

On the beach at Ibeno, the few fishermen were glum. Far out to sea oil had spilled for weeks from the Exxon Mobil pipe. “We can’t see where to fish; oil is in the sea,” Patrick Okoni said.

“We don’t have an international media to cover us, so nobody cares about it,” said Mr. Mbong, in nearby Eket. “Whatever cry we cry is not heard outside of here.”


lunedì 14 giugno 2010

Flash back

Ebbene sì, per la disperazione di Ale e la conferma che anche tra i peggiori esistono i migliori, scrivo questo post per ricordare il giorno in cui la mia squadra del cuore ha riconquistato la serie A.
Non sono un tifoso sfegatato, non ho più la televisione da un paio di anni, non conosco la formazione delle squadre nè purtroppo so chi giocherà stasera in Nazionale. Però da ragazzino giocavo tanto a pallone, facevo la raccolta di figurine, guardavo 90esimo minuto con mio papà, entravo allo stadio solo alla fine del primo tempo per vedere la partita gratuitamente, leggevo il Guerin sportivo e la Gazzetta anche nella versione estiva. Tutto sembrava più semplice, leggero e vero. Ma non era così, il Brescia comprava le partite anche allora, il calcio scommesse travolgeva miti come Albertosi e Paolo Rossi, Re Cecconi moriva "sparato" da un amico gioielliere terrorizzato da una finta rapina, Beppe Savoldi veniva ceduto per la spropositata cifra di 1 miliardo di lire, Settembre Nero colpiva la squadra israeliana alle Olimpiadi, in Piazza Loggia esplodevano dei colleghi di mio padre. Tutto sembra così lontano.
E ieri il Brescia è tornato in serie A, in questo paradossale fluire della vita che si ripete all'infinito nel campionato di calcio italiano. Quest'inverno ho letto due romanzi di Enrico Brizzi (La nostra Guerra e L'inattesa piega degli eventi) che mi hanno trascinato in una dimensione di sentito, non vissuto, ma provato. Due romanzi che mescolano storia (fantastoria), calcio, vita italiana e figurine. Ecco, forse se mai partiremo e mai resteremo lontani, i miei ricordi sfumeranno in una dimensione romantica e sfuocata in cui tutto sembrerà quello che non è stato.
(La fotografia è un momento unico: Pepe Guardiola, grande giocatore spagnolo e attuale allenatore del Barcellona e Roberto Baggio, l'ultima stella del calcio italiano, insieme abbracciati quando a fine carriera giocavano e vincevano nel Brescia).

venerdì 4 giugno 2010

Vendo Panda multipower

Approfitto del blog per un messaggio personale.
Abbiamo messo in vendita la nostra Panda 1,2 Multipower Metano/Benzina Verde/Caccole -14cv, seconda serie (vedi fotografia scattata oggi).
Data di immatricolazione: 12 febb 2007.
Km 56.000 di traffico cittadino (una città piccolissima e sempre pianissimo). Mai incidentata (gravemente), manutenzione e revisioni regolari (compatibilmente alla manutenzione di una donna che guida, ma mio suocero controllava l'auto con spirito maniacale e ha cambiato i pneumatici in febbraio).
Alzacristalli elettrici, autoradio con CD, fendinebbia, servosterzo con guida idraulica, airbag lato guidatore e passeggero, climatizzatore (funziona tutto e poche balle, soprattutto il CD con il disco dei 3 porcellini).
Alimentazione: benzina verde e metano (capacità bombola 49 litri), l'impianto a metano è montato da Fiat per cui si tratta di un impianto garantito e progettato dalla casa automobilistica. Con il metano si parcheggia ovunque (anche sottoterra, basta che ci sia un garage accessibile), si entra in tutte le città con ecopiani vari (io ci entro anche con il diesel Euro 2 ma non conta) e il pieno si fa con 9 euro (circa 200 km di autonomia). Il passaggio metano/benzina/metano si deve fare solo di notte, il venerdì e con la luna ponente (si fa automaticamente...).
Quotazione quattroruote, repubblica auto, l'automobile, ebay per modello e data immatricolazione: Euro 6.900 - 7.500.
Prezzo proposto: Euro 6.800 (trattabili in base alla data di acquisto, più ci si avvicina alla nostra partenza più cala...) con passaggio proprietà a carico acquirente (dopo il versamento del contante).
Per informazioni: scrivetemi sulla mail

giovedì 3 giugno 2010

Le città più vivibili al Mondo

Selon la firme britannique Mercer:
la ville de Vienne en Autriche, a été identifiée en 2010 comme étant la grande ville ayant la meilleure qualité de vie dans le monde. En effet, chaque année la firme dresse un palmarès des villes ayant la meilleure qualité de vie au monde à travers 221 agglomérations. Dans le top 5, la ville de Vienne est suivi de Zurich et Genève en Suisse, suivies de Vancouver au Canada et d'Auckland en Nouvelle-Zélande, ces deux dernières à égalité.

Dans le classement le Canada fait plutôt bonne figure. En effet, quatre villes canadiennes se dressent dans le top 25, soit Vancouver (4e), Ottawa (14e), Toronto (16e) et Montréal (21e).

Encore une fois, la capitale irakienne de Bagdad se retrouve en toute fin de classement, soit en 221e place.

Par ailleurs, Mercer s'est aussi intéressé à établir un classement des villes selon leurs efforts environnementaux et la qualité de vie en lien avec ce thème. Le classement s'est notamment établi grâce à des critères tels que la qualité et la disponibilité de l'eau potable, la gestion des déchets, la qualité des égouts, la pollution de l'air et la congestion sur les routes.

Dans ce dernier classement environnementale, la palme est remporté par Calgary en Alberta au Canada. La ville de l’ouest canadien est suivie de Honolulu (Hawai, aux États-Unis) et d'Ottawa en Ontario, la capitale canadienne, qui se retrouve à égalité avec Helsinki, en Finlande. Les deux villes canadiennes de Montréal et Vancouver se trouvent à égalité au 13e rang.

Le top 25 des villes du monde selon la qualité de vie:

1-Vienne (Autriche)
-Zurich (Suisse)
-Genève (Suisse)
-Vancouver (Canada) 4-Auckland (Nouvelle-Zélande)
-Düsseldorf (Allemagne)
-Francfort (Allemagne) 7-Munich (Allemagne)
-Berne (Suisse)
-Sydney (Australie)
-Copenhague (Danemark)
-Wellington (Nouvelle-Zélande)
-Amsterdam (Pays-Bas)
-Ottawa (Canada)
-Bruxelles (Belgique)
-Toronto (Canada)
-Berlin (Allemagne)
-Melbourne (Australie)
19-Luxembourg (Luxembourg)
-Stockholm (Suède)
-Perth (Australie) 21-Montréal (Canada)
-Hambourg (Allemagne)
-Nuremberg (Allemagne) 24-Oslo (Norvège)

Le top 25 des villes du monde selon et la qualité de vie environnementale:

1-Calgary (Canada)
-Honolulu (États-Unis)
-Ottawa (Canada) 3-Helsinki (Finlande)
-Wellington (Nouvelle-Zélande)
6-Minneapolis (États-Unis)
7-Adelaïde (Australie)
8-Copenhague (Danemark)
-Kobe (Japon) 9-Oslo (Norvège) 9-Stockholm (Suède)
-Perth (Australie)
-Montréal (Canada) 13-Vancouver (Canada) 13-Nuremberg (Allemagne) 13-Auckland (Nouvelle-Zélande) 13-Berne (Suisse) 13-Pittsburgh (États-Unis)
-Zurich (Suisse) 19-Aberdeen (Grande-Bretagne)
-Canberra (Australie)
-Singapour (Singapour)
23-Brisbane (Australie)
24- Washington (États-Unis)
-Melbourne (Australie) 25-Genève (Suisse) 25-Boston (États-Unis).

Le città italiane tra le prime 50:
Milano 41esima per la qualità di vita;
nessuna nella classifica di eco-cities.

I criteri metodologici della ricerca:

Mercer Consulting largely collected its Data was largely collected between September and November 2009 and is regularly updated to take account of changing circumstances. In particular, the assessments are revised in the case of significant political, economic and environmental developments.

Mercer’s database of cities contains more than 420 cities. For 2010, the number of cites appearing in the yearly published rankings was increased from 215 to 221. This new roster provides a more well-rounded global perspective. In particular, better coverage is now offered for African, Middle Eastern and Central Asian cities. Many of the additions are gaining popularity as expatriate destinations.

Companies need to be able to determine their compensation packages rationally, consistently and systematically. Providing incentives to reward and recognise the efforts that employees and their families make when taking on international assignments remains a typical practice, particularly for difficult locations. Two common incentives include a quality of living allowance and a mobility premium.

• Quality of living or “hardship” allowances compensate expatriates for decreases in the quality of living between their home and host locations.
•By contrast, a mobility premium simply compensates for the inconvenience of being uprooted and having to work in another country.

A quality of living allowance is typically location-related whilst a mobility premium is usually independent of the host location. Some multi-national companies combine these premiums but the vast majority of international companies provide them separately. The latter approach is deemed to be clearer and more transparent.

Mercer evaluates local living conditions in all the 420 cities it surveys worldwide. Living conditions are analysed according to 39 factors, grouped in 10 categories:

1) Political and social environment (political stability, crime, law enforcement, etc)
2) Economic environment (currency exchange regulations, banking services, etc)
3) Socio-cultural environment (censorship, limitations on personal freedom, etc)
4) Health and sanitation (medical supplies and services, infectious diseases, sewage, waste disposal, air pollution, etc)
5) Schools and education (standard and availability of international schools, etc)
6) Public services and transportation (electricity, water, public transport, traffic congestion, etc)
7) Recreation (restaurants, theatres, cinemas, sports and leisure, etc)
8) Consumer goods (availability of food/daily consumption items, cars, etc)
9) Housing (housing, household appliances, furniture, maintenance services, etc)
10 Natural environment (climate, record of natural disasters)

The scores attributed to each factor allow for city-to-city comparisons to be made. The result is a quality of living index that compares the relative differences between any two locations. For the indices to be used in a practical manner, Mercer has created a grid that allows companies to link the resulting index to a quality of living allowance amount by recommending a percentage value in relation to the index.

per leggere l'articolo:

-tratto da;;