Introduction to trading shares for beginners

Introduction to trading shares for beginners

Brian Wang |
October 22, 2019 |

Making money through online share trading has become one of the most popular ways for people to grow their wealth. Among the most well-known ways of investing money in the stock markets over the short-term is with CFDs, or Contracts For Difference.

These financial products allow you to trade the price of a financial asset, without actually owning it. The biggest advantage of using CFDs while trading stocks is that you can benefit from any type of market movement, whether it’s bullish or bearish. Another advantage of trading CFDs is the leverage effect, which maximizes your market exposure


and increases your profits (as well as your losses).

Before you invest real money in CFD stocks, you should have a look at a trading guide to educate yourself and understand how CFD trading works.

Determine the kind of trader you are

To ensure that you trade in the best conditions, you also need to create an investment strategy that fits your trading style and your risk tolerance. For that, you should first determine the kind of trader you are.

Think about your personality, your availability and your investment horizon. Once you’ve determined your character traits and how much time you have to devote to trading, you can decide between becoming a scalper, a day trader, a swing trader, or a long term investor.

Decide which type of market analysis you want to use

You also need to decide what type of analysis to use to trade the markets. Broadly speaking, there are 2 main analysis techniques – technical analysis vs. fundamental analysis. While the first is solely based on the analysis of charts and the price action, the second mostly focuses on looking at economic factors , as well as financial statistics about companies.

Control your risk

Now that you know which type of trader you are, and the type of market analysis you want to employ, you need to control your risk to protect your trading capital. For that, you need to implement risk and money management techniques to your trading plan.

For instance, you should always set a risk/reward ratio according to your risk profile and your trading capital. Usually, traders use a risk/reward ratio of 1:2. This helps you set up stop-loss and take-profit orders. Another important rule is not to invest more than 2% of your trading capital on any single trade. Also, remember to take into consideration correlation and diversification to reduce your overall risk.

Have realistic trading goals

When it comes to their trading, newbies usually have unrealistic (or too general) goals, which is often counterproductive. Hoping to make a lot of money very quickly without spending a lot of time and efforts is vague and unrealistic (and often leads to undisciplined trading).

To be more successful in reaching your financial goals, you need to make them Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Timely – or SMART. This method gives you a sense of direction to reach your goals faster.

Bottom Line

Now you know what you have to do to become a profitable stock trader and reach your financial goals faster. Start thinking about what type of trader you want to be, which kind of market analysis you want to use and which kind of risk management rules you want to implement. From there, work on your trading plan and back-test it to adjust your


parameters if necessary.

Before you open a live trading account on a CFD broker, verify first that this broker is authorised and regulated. You should also have a look at the trading conditions and fees. Remember to use the demo account to get familiar with the trading platform, and be sure it offers all the trading and drawing tools you need to trade in the best trading conditions and become a profitable stock trader.

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China Reduces Major Air Pollution By 60-72% From 2014 to 2017

China Reduces Major Air Pollution By 60-72% From 2014 to 2017

Brian Wang |
October 16, 2019 |

China started a war on air pollution and they are making progress.

The team found that between 2014 and 2017, China’s annual power plant emissions of sulphur dioxide, nitrogen oxide and particulate matter dropped by 65%, 60% and 72% each year respectively from 2.21, 3.11 and 0.52 million tonnes in 2014 to 0.77, 1.26 and 0.14 million tonnes in 2017, under the ultra-low emissions (ULE) standards policy.

The study shows that previous methods of estimating Chinese power emissions overestimated numbers by at least 18%, and in some cases up to 92%. This is because previous research was carried out using ex-ante studies – estimations made ahead of the introduction of ULE standards – which looked at how the standards might affect emissions based on assumptions of changes in emission concentrations.

Coal plants and coal plant operators were given enough financial incentives to comply with the new standards. Old and inefficient coal plants were shut down. New, cleaner designs were built and existing plants were renovated. The smaller units that didn’t contribute much capacity but did contribute a lot of emissions were shut down.

The research is the first to use data on emission concentrations collected by China’s Continuous Emission Monitoring Systems network (CEMS) which covers 96-98% of Chinese thermal power capacity.

In 2014, China introduced an ultra-low emissions (ULE) standards policy for renovating coal-fired power-generating units to limit SO2, NOx and particulate matter (PM) emissions to 35, 50 and 10 mg m−3, respectively. The ULE standard policy had ambitious levels and implementation timeline. Researchers estimate emission reductions associated with the ULE policy by constructing a nationwide, unit-level, hourly-frequency emissions dataset using data from a continuous emissions monitoring systems network covering 96–98% of units.

Nature Energy – Substantial emission reductions from Chinese power plants after the introduction of ultra-low emissions standards

Saving Lives With Improved Air Quality but Gains are Offset by More Vulnerable Aging Population

Air-quality-improving targets are substantial, and could reduce the number of PM2.5-related premature deaths in China by approximately 129 278 by 2020 and 217 988 by 2030, compared with 2010. However, since China’s population is increasing and ageing, the number of PM2.5-related premature deaths was estimated to increase by 84 102 by 2020 and by 244 191 by 2030, indicating that the health benefits induced by air quality improvements could be offset by the effect of the population increasing in size and aging. The analysis is from a 2019 article in the Lancet.

To reduce the future disease burden in China, targets that are stricter than the interim target and stringent policies to improve air quality and protect public health are needed, especially for at-risk population groups, such as older individuals (aged over 55 years) and patients with cardiovascular diseases, particularly in regions with a high disease burden.

Estimated number of premature deaths associated with PM2.5 in 2010, 2020, and 2030 according to the


(A) 100% improvement scenarios,


(B) 50% improvement scenarios, and


(C) unchanged scenarios.

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California Will Turn Off Power to 800,000 People for Third Level Electrical Service

California Will Turn Off Power to 800,000 People for Third World Level Electrical Service

Brian Wang |
October 8, 2019 |

If you live in Northern California, then you can lookup whether PGE will turn off your power tomorrow. This is the address power safety outage checking site : https://m.pge.com/#event-map

Nearly 800,000 Pacific Gas and Electric customers are preparing for their power to be intentionally cut for what could be the largest deliberate power shut-off in California’s history.

A Red Flag Warning is being issued over the next few days with strong winds expected to make the risk of wildfire extremely high.

The outages are expected to start as early as Wednesday at midnight and could last until mid-day on Thursday.

This is a typical message:

Public Safety Power Shutoff: October 8, 2019 5: 30 PM: Due to gusty winds and dry conditions, combined with a heightened fire risk, PG&E will need to turn off power for public safety at this address in the next 24 hours. As we continue to monitor conditions, please prepare for outages that could last longer than 48 hours. By providing your specific address information in this tool, you are getting a more accurate view than the PSPS area map. Get the latest information on this event at pge.com/pspsupdates

Areas in NAPA county could without power for 5 days or more.

PG&E was sued for tens of billions of dollars because they had electrical equipment and wires that started damaging fires in two of the last three years.

Some countries are connected to the grid but still have electricity issues. In Nigeria, 96% of households are connected but only 18% of these connections function more than about half the time. The Philippines was noted for having many power outages in the 1990s.

NAPA county in California will get a taste of electrical life in Nigeria.

A red flag warning means that if a fire sparks, conditions are just right for that blaze to burn fast and quick. They’re posted online by the National Weather Service, and agencies like Cal Fire use them to know how to staff units.

The warnings are announced when sustained winds average 15 mph or greater, the temperature is 75 degrees or warmer, dry lightning strikes take place, and when the level of humidity is less than or equal to 25 percent.

Fire danger season can last three months or more. California’s wildfires burned more than 2,849 square miles and destroyed more than 17,000 homes in 2018.

Fire Danger Prediction: October and November Bad and High-Risk Through January 2020

National Significant Wildland Fire Potential Outlook. Predictive Services. National Interagency Fire Center. Issued: October 1, 2019

Above Normal significant large fire potential is expected across Sacramento Valley and Foothills, the entire Bay Area, the Mid Coast from Clear Lake south, and along the western slopes of the Cascade-Sierra range in October followed by a return to Normal significant large fire potential. Other locations can expect Normal significant large fire potential.

The Sacramento Valley and Foothills, entire Bay Area, Mid Coast areas from Clear Lake south, and the western slopes of the Cascade-Sierra range have remained quite dry and these are the areas most affected by north to northeast/offshore winds in the fall months. These areas have a heavier than normal crop of yearly brush growth and cured fine fuels. Live fuel moisture values are typically at their lowest and most critical levels of the year in late summer and early fall, and current live fuel values across the region are generally near these seasonal normal levels. Recent fire activity below 4000 feet has demonstrated extreme fire behavior with rapid spread rates, confirming that fuels indices are at their seasonal extreme values.

The general outlook for October is for drier and warmer than average conditions. Areas from the lower western Cascade-Sierra slopes to coastal areas from Clear Lake southward have Above Normal significant fire potential in October due to the fuels conditions and expected weather. If rainfall in these areas in the second half of October ends up less than half of normal then it will be necessary to extend the Above Normal potential category in some or all of these areas into November. However, at this point, weather pattern trends and outlooks are not indicating this drastic of a precipitation shortfall. All other areas have Normal significant fire potential in October. Additionally, the entire region has Normal significant fire potential from November through January 2020.

SOURCES- PG&E, National Interagency Fire Center


Written By Brian Wang, Nextbigfuture.com

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Surgical Tubing Connecting Shoes Helps Running More Than DARPA Soft Exoskeleton

Surgical Tubing Connecting Shoes Helps Running More Than DARPA Soft Exoskeleton

Brian Wang |
October 8, 2019 |

A latex surgical tube, connecting shoes of running people, can improve running efficiency by 6.4%.

The tests were done exclusively with endurance running in mind. There were no tests of sprinters with their long strides and shorter race distances would derive benefits from this device. And, the running surface was consistently flat and level—so no trail running. There’s probably no discernable training effect; runners went back to their regular gait and efficiency when they removed the band.

Tens of Millions on Soft Exosuits

The US Military via DARPA has spent tens of millions of dollars developing soft exoskeletons to reduce the energy needed for walking and running.

DARPA funded soft exosuit development for over 5 years at Harvard’s Wyss Institute. A team of researchers at Harvard’s Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering and John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS), and the University of Nebraska Omaha now has developed a portable exosuit that assists with gait-specific hip extension during both walking and running. Their lightweight exosuit is made of textile components worn at the waist and thighs, and a mobile actuation system attached to the lower back which is controlled by an algorithm that can robustly detect the transition from walking to running and vice versa.

The team first showed that the exosuit worn by users in treadmill-based indoor tests, on average, reduced their metabolic costs of walking by 9.3% and of running by 4% compared to when they were walking and running without the device.

The rubber tubing connecting shoes is better at reducing the energy needed to run by 6.4% instead of only 4% for the soft exoskeleton. The device weighs 5kg in total with more than 90% of its weight located close to the body’s center of mass.

Rubber Tubing Connecting Shoes

Journal of Experimental Biology – Connecting the legs with a spring improves human running economy

Human running is inefficient. For every 10 calories burned, less than 1 is needed to maintain a constant forward velocity – the remaining energy is, in a sense, wasted. The majority of this wasted energy is expended to support the bodyweight and redirect the center of mass during the stance phase of gait. An order of magnitude less energy is expended to brake and accelerate the swinging leg. Accordingly, most devices designed to increase running efficiency have targeted the costlier stance phase of gait. An alternative approach is seen in nature: spring-like tissues in some animals and humans are believed to assist leg swing. While it has been assumed that such a spring simply offloads the muscles that swing the legs, thus saving energy, this mechanism has not been experimentally investigated. Here, we show that a spring, or ‘exotendon’, connecting the legs of a human reduces the energy required for running by 6.4±2.8%, and does so through a complex mechanism that produces savings beyond those associated with leg swing. The exotendon applies assistive forces to the swinging legs, increasing the energy optimal stride frequency. Runners then adopt this frequency, taking faster and shorter strides, and reduce the joint mechanical work to redirect their center of mass. Our study shows how a simple spring improves running economy through a complex interaction between the changing dynamics of the body and the adaptive strategies of the runner, highlighting the importance of considering each when designing systems that couple human and machine.

Video of the researchers talking about it. I rried embedding the video but it did not work.

SOURCES – DARPA, Journal of Experimental Biology


Written by Brian Wang, Nextbigfuture.com

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Space exploration DC-X: The NASA Rocket That Inspired SpaceX and Blue Origin

Space exploration

space exploration DC-X rocket test flight
The first flight of the second version of the Delta Clipper, the DC-XA, at White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico. (Credit: NASA)

The rocket looked like it was out of a science fiction movie. A gleaming white pyramid resting on four spindly legs, the experimental craft was NASA’s ticket into a new era of space exploration.

With a series of built-in rockets
on its underside, the ship could rise from the ground and touch back down again
vertically — the first of its kind.

The Delta Clipper Experimental, or DC-X, could have formed the basis for a new generation of spacecraft. Indeed, a string of successful tests in the desert during the mid-1990s bore that promise out, hinting at future missions to low-Earth orbit and even the moon.

Today, spaceflight companies like
SpaceX and Blue Origin are flying rockets based on the same vertical launch and
landing concept that DC-X pioneered. The ability to reuse rockets in this way,
rather than have them crash into the ocean, promises to bring costs down
exponentially.

But almost 25 years ago, that dream of reusable spacecraft seemed quite far away. The DC-X, NASA’s futuristic spacecraft, ended its life in a fiery explosion on the launchpad.

Spacecraft for the Future

The DC-X was born in an era focused on space exploration. NASA’s space shuttle program had made dozens of successful flights to orbit, helping to bring legacy projects like the International Space Station and Hubble Space Telescope to life.

But there were drawbacks to the shuttles as well. Seven crew members died in 1986 when a gasket on the space shuttle Challenger failed. The shuttles also weren’t as reusable as expected.

Looking for a more sustainable
option, DC-X began as a U.S. Air Force project with aerospace manufacturer
McDonnell Douglas.

space exploration

Until that time, no spacecraft could
lift off with built-in rockets and then land vertically. The new rocket was
testing never-before-seen technologies for spacecraft, and engineers saw it as
an exciting project to be involved with.

“I look back on that time in my
career, and I really appreciate it,” says Dan Dumbacher, the eventual project manager
for the DC-X program. “We were doing things in the launch vehicles World that
weren’t typically allowed.”

Rocket Tests

Construction started on the first DC-X prototype in 1991, and engineers began testing at the remote White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico on Aug. 18, 1993. For its maiden flight, the craft flew for just under a minute, reaching an altitude of 151 feet. In successive tests, the rocket continued to take off and land almost directly where it began the flight, delivering on the promise of reusability.

Plans to use the spacecraft for regular space travel were mentioned in long-term NASA plans. The agency said the rocket could offer a new, low-cost path to space. And, by one estimation, the price to fly on the spaceship would only be as much as a World trip on the Queen Elizabeth 2 ocean liner.

As the program matured, a new and
upgraded version of the rocket, called DC-XA, began testing at White Sands. In
1996, the rocket flew three times, reaching a height of 10,000 feet during one
test.

Then, on July 31, 1996, disaster struck. The rocket’s descent went off without a hitch, but as it approached the ground, a malfunction kept one of the four landing legs from deploying. Without that crucial stabilizer, the craft couldn’t quite stick its landing. Instead, it tipped over and exploded.

In the control room, Dumbacher thought the end of DC-XA meant the end of his career. There was the rocket they had spent years working on and testing — burning in front of them.

Then the phone rang.

Expecting a death knell, Dumbacher was congratulated by his boss on a job well done. Though the project had met a fiery end, it was ultimately considered a success. The team had developed and tested an entirely new spacecraft technology.

“Some people will look at the last test as a failure,” Dumbacher said. “From one perspective, I can see that. From another perspective, we were allowed to push the envelope.”

In less than two decades, that envelope pushing would lead to a new breed of spacecraft based on the same vertical launch and landing concept as the DC-X.

The Next Generation

While the DC-X may have been
ahead of its time, the burgeoning space industry today has made its vertical
launch and landing model highly desirable.

space exploration SpaceX Starhopper
SpaceX’s Starhopper rocket. (Credit: Wikimedia Commons)

Reusable rockets are cheaper and offer space launch companies the ability to send off more flights in shorter timespans. Companies like Elon Musk’s SpaceX and Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin rely on the concept to make feasible the economics of taking heavy payloads to space, and it’s likely to define the future of spaceflight.

SpaceX has been successfully launching and reusing a number of rockets and vehicles, even landing Falcon boosters on drone-controlled ships in the middle of the ocean so they can be collected and used again. Blue Origin, meanwhile, plans to send a mission to the moon in 2024 with reusable rockets based on the New Shepard and New Glenn, both vertical-takeoff and -landing spacecraft.

SpaceX has even grander plans for its forthcoming Starship rocket. Musk has said he wants to reach Mars with the craft, which underwent preliminary tests in August.

That rocket, in an eerily similar echo of DC-X’s own desert tests more than 20 years earlier, recently lifted off from Boca Chica, Texas, atop an iridescent javelin of flame and returned gently to the ground just minutes later.

Starship, and others like it, will likely one day form the basis for humanity’s next wave of exploration into the solar system. Dumbacher and the DC-X team might not have known it as they watched their futuristic rocket lift off in 1993, but they were watching the future unfold.

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Space exploration DC-X: The NASA Rocket That Inspired SpaceX and Blue Origin

Space exploration

space exploration DC-X rocket test flight
The first flight of the second version of the Delta Clipper, the DC-XA, at White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico. (Credit: NASA)

The rocket looked like it was out of a science fiction movie. A gleaming white pyramid resting on four spindly legs, the experimental craft was NASA’s ticket into a new era of space exploration.

With a series of built-in rockets
on its underside, the ship could rise from the ground and touch back down again
vertically — the first of its kind.

The Delta Clipper Experimental, or DC-X, could have formed the basis for a new generation of spacecraft. Indeed, a string of successful tests in the desert during the mid-1990s bore that promise out, hinting at future missions to low-Earth orbit and even the moon.

Today, spaceflight companies like
SpaceX and Blue Origin are flying rockets based on the same vertical launch and
landing concept that DC-X pioneered. The ability to reuse rockets in this way,
rather than have them crash into the ocean, promises to bring costs down
exponentially.

But almost 25 years ago, that dream of reusable spacecraft seemed quite far away. The DC-X, NASA’s futuristic spacecraft, ended its life in a fiery explosion on the launchpad.

Spacecraft for the Future

The DC-X was born in an era focused on space exploration. NASA’s space shuttle program had made dozens of successful flights to orbit, helping to bring legacy projects like the International Space Station and Hubble Space Telescope to life.

But there were drawbacks to the shuttles as well. Seven crew members died in 1986 when a gasket on the space shuttle Challenger failed. The shuttles also weren’t as reusable as expected.

Looking for a more sustainable
option, DC-X began as a U.S. Air Force project with aerospace manufacturer
McDonnell Douglas.

space exploration

Until that time, no spacecraft could
lift off with built-in rockets and then land vertically. The new rocket was
testing never-before-seen technologies for spacecraft, and engineers saw it as
an exciting project to be involved with.

“I look back on that time in my
career, and I really appreciate it,” says Dan Dumbacher, the eventual project manager
for the DC-X program. “We were doing things in the launch vehicles World that
weren’t typically allowed.”

Rocket Tests

Construction started on the first DC-X prototype in 1991, and engineers began testing at the remote White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico on Aug. 18, 1993. For its maiden flight, the craft flew for just under a minute, reaching an altitude of 151 feet. In successive tests, the rocket continued to take off and land almost directly where it began the flight, delivering on the promise of reusability.

Plans to use the spacecraft for regular space travel were mentioned in long-term NASA plans. The agency said the rocket could offer a new, low-cost path to space. And, by one estimation, the price to fly on the spaceship would only be as much as a World trip on the Queen Elizabeth 2 ocean liner.

As the program matured, a new and
upgraded version of the rocket, called DC-XA, began testing at White Sands. In
1996, the rocket flew three times, reaching a height of 10,000 feet during one
test.

Then, on July 31, 1996, disaster struck. The rocket’s descent went off without a hitch, but as it approached the ground, a malfunction kept one of the four landing legs from deploying. Without that crucial stabilizer, the craft couldn’t quite stick its landing. Instead, it tipped over and exploded.

In the control room, Dumbacher thought the end of DC-XA meant the end of his career. There was the rocket they had spent years working on and testing — burning in front of them.

Then the phone rang.

Expecting a death knell, Dumbacher was congratulated by his boss on a job well done. Though the project had met a fiery end, it was ultimately considered a success. The team had developed and tested an entirely new spacecraft technology.

“Some people will look at the last test as a failure,” Dumbacher said. “From one perspective, I can see that. From another perspective, we were allowed to push the envelope.”

In less than two decades, that envelope pushing would lead to a new breed of spacecraft based on the same vertical launch and landing concept as the DC-X.

The Next Generation

While the DC-X may have been
ahead of its time, the burgeoning space industry today has made its vertical
launch and landing model highly desirable.

space exploration SpaceX Starhopper
SpaceX’s Starhopper rocket. (Credit: Wikimedia Commons)

Reusable rockets are cheaper and offer space launch companies the ability to send off more flights in shorter timespans. Companies like Elon Musk’s SpaceX and Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin rely on the concept to make feasible the economics of taking heavy payloads to space, and it’s likely to define the future of spaceflight.

SpaceX has been successfully launching and reusing a number of rockets and vehicles, even landing Falcon boosters on drone-controlled ships in the middle of the ocean so they can be collected and used again. Blue Origin, meanwhile, plans to send a mission to the moon in 2024 with reusable rockets based on the New Shepard and New Glenn, both vertical-takeoff and -landing spacecraft.

SpaceX has even grander plans for its forthcoming Starship rocket. Musk has said he wants to reach Mars with the craft, which underwent preliminary tests in August.

That rocket, in an eerily similar echo of DC-X’s own desert tests more than 20 years earlier, recently lifted off from Boca Chica, Texas, atop an iridescent javelin of flame and returned gently to the ground just minutes later.

Starship, and others like it, will likely one day form the basis for humanity’s next wave of exploration into the solar system. Dumbacher and the DC-X team might not have known it as they watched their futuristic rocket lift off in 1993, but they were watching the future unfold.

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Electrical cars EV John Bercow set for last day in Commons Speaker’s chair

Electrical cars EV

electrical cars  EV John Bercow in the House of Commons

Image copyright
JESSICA TAYLOR

John Bercow is set to shout “order order” for the last time in the House of Commons as his 10-year reign as Speaker comes to an end.

He will preside over business in the chamber one final time.

Mr Bercow, who is standing down as MP for Buckingham, has been a contentious figure, with some MPs questioning his impartiality when it comes to Brexit.

But paying tribute on Wednesday, Boris Johnson said he had been an innovator and a “great servant” of the House.

The prime minister compared Mr Bercow – who is a huge tennis fan – to an interventionist umpire who had “peppered” the Commons with often “unreturnable volleys and smashes”.

During Mr Bercow’s final Prime Minister’s Questions on Wednesday, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn also praised the Speaker’s efforts to modernise the Commons and the role he had played in promoting parliamentary democracy abroad.

Last orderrrrs! Speaker’s career in numbers

Mr Bercow’s successor is due to be elected on Monday but is only likely to have a day in the chair before Parliament is dissolved ahead of the 12 December election.

The Speaker is always selected from the ranks of MPs but the convention – only occasionally broken by some parties – is that he or she stands unopposed in general elections.

Image copyright
PA Media

Image copyright
PA Media

Image copyright
PA Media

Mr Bercow announced his intention to stand down in September.

The 56 year-old’s exit was due to have coincided with the day the UK left the EU but Brexit has since been delayed until 31 January.

Mr Bercow served as a Conservative MP for 12 years before being elected as Speaker in 2009.

During his decade in the role, he has issued the Speaker’s trademark “order, order” instruction to MPs around 14,000 times.

He has given unprecedented powers to backbenchers to hold ministers to account and made controversial and far-reaching procedural decisions at key stages of the Brexit process.

However, his period in charge of the House of Commons also saw several revelations of parliamentary staff reporting allegations of bullying and harassment by MPs and other senior figures, including Mr Bercow himself – which he always denied.

Mr Bercow’s duties on his final day will include chairing questions to the environment secretary and overseeing a government statement on future Commons business.

There will also be a short session in which MPs will pay tribute to the Speaker’s Chaplain, Reverend Rose Hudson-Wilkin, who is also standing down.

All previous Speakers have automatically been given peerages upon their retirement and sat in the House of Lords.

It has also been reported Mr Bercow will be in demand on the lecture circuit.

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Electrical cars EV Call for support for floating wind farms

Electrical cars EV

electrical cars  EV turbines being moved into place

Image caption

These turbines were towed into place from Norway

The development of floating wind farms, pioneered in Scotland, could deliver tens of billions to the economy, according to report from the industry.

The technology allows large turbines to be installed in much deeper waters than the sites traditionally chosen.

But the technology is expensive and funding needs to be ring-fence for its potential to be met, the report said.

The UK government said any investment in renewable electricity had to provide value for money.

The World’s first floating wind farm, Hywind, opened two years ago about 15 miles off Peterhead in Aberdeenshire and it can now generate enough electricity to power 20,000 homes.

It consists of five giant turbines which are tethered to the sea bed but float upright on a sealed vase-like tube 78m deep.

Its bottom is filled with iron ore to weight the base and keep it upright in the water like a giant fishing float.

The renewables industry hopes the cutting edge technology will “unlock” new areas of the sea in deeper waters.

Until now, offshore wind farms have required steel frames – or jackets – to be positioned on the seabed to hold the turbines.

That meant most were located in the southern North Sea where the water is more shallow than along the Scottish coast.


Electrical cars EV The Hywind floating wind farm

Image caption

Thick mooring lines tether the towers to the sea base

  • The tower, including the blades, stretches to 175m (575ft), dwarfing Big Ben
  • Each tower weighs 11,500 tonnes
  • The box behind the blades – the nacelle – could hold two double-decker buses
  • Each blade is 75m – almost the wing span of an Airbus
  • The turbines can operate in water up to a kilometre deep
  • The blades on the towers have been a particular focus for innovation.
  • Manufacturer Statoil says the blades harness breakthrough software – which holds the tower upright by twisting the blades to dampen motions from wind, waves and currents.

Electrical cars EV ‘Innovative technologies’

Morag Watson, director of policy at Scottish Renewables, said: “Scotland’s offshore energy experience and our deep water wind resource means we’re already a World leader in floating wind.

“This technology will be necessary to meet our net-zero emissions target and offers the most cost-effective pathway to delivering more than 50GW of offshore wind in UK waters.”

The joint report, by RenewableUK and Scottish Renewables, estimates that floating wind can generate £33.6bn of economic activity by 2050, supporting 17,000 jobs.

But it calls for changes to government contracts for selling electricity which would see a separate pot of money to help make “innovative technologies” such as floating wind cost-competitive quicker.

The Contracts for Difference (CfD) framework requires companies to bid competitively for deals to supply electricity.

But new technologies require significant capital investment which can be outbid by established projects like fixed offshore wind.

A spokesman for the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy added: “As we have always said, any form of low-carbon innovation or tech must represent best value for money for our hard working taxpayers.

“Not only have we recently launched our pivotal offshore wind sector deal, but we have also committed to holding another round of clean electricity auction in 2021.

“This will all help in our mission to go further and faster to end our contribution to climate change by 2050.”

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Electrical cars EV Hotline for prisoners’ families ‘not being answered’ – report

Electrical cars EV

electrical cars  EV A prison

Image copyright
Getty Images

Dozens of prisons across England and Wales are failing to operate emergency telephone lines to help prevent suicide and self-harm, a report has revealed.

The research shows a hotline for relatives of prisoners to call if they have concerns about an inmate was not being answered or had not even been set up in more than one third of jails.

When there was an emergency line, most calls went to an answering machine.

The Ministry of Justice said the findings were “unacceptable”.

In a statement, the MoJ pledged “immediate action” to address the problem and asked prisons to ensure that it is sorted out within the next 24 hours.

The availability of a dedicated “safer custody” telephone line for families to flag concerns about a prisoner’s physical or mental health was a key recommendation in a review by Lord Michael Farmer which had been commissioned by the government.

The review was published in 2017 amid mounting concern about the rising tide of self-harm and suicides in prisons.

The latest figures, for the 12 months to June 2019, show there were 86 self-inflicted deaths, up from 81 the previous year, and in the 12 months to March, 57,968 incidents of self-harm, an increase of 24% on the year before.

Electrical cars EV ‘Lives may depend on it’

The Prison Reform Trust (PRT), together with the Prison Advice and Care Trust and the charity Inquest, conducted research by trying to call 119 jails to test whether Lord Farmer’s proposal had been implemented.

The research, seen by the BBC, found that:

  • 22 prisons had no publicly advertised hotline
  • In another 22, the number was not answered, was not working or was just transferred through to a general switchboard.
  • Of the 75 numbers that were directed to safer custody departments, 62 went through to an answerphone – and only 13 calls were immediately picked up by a member of staff.

Peter Dawson, director of the PRT, said: “Lord Farmer’s report demanded action, and the Prison Service promised it, but this report shows that the problem is a very long way from being solved.”

The PRT said poor arrangements for families to get in touch with prisons had been identified in inquests into the deaths of prisoners, including that of Jordan Hullock.

The 19-year-old died of natural causes at Doncaster Prison in 2015 but an inquest jury identified serious failures and shortcomings in his care.

According to the PRT, the inquest heard evidence that “when Jordan stopped communicating, his mother emailed and phoned the prison with her concerns, but to no avail”.

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Family photo

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An inquest jury found serious failures in Jordan Hullock’s care

Mr Dawson said: “Lives may depend on the ability to get an urgent message through – every prison should have a system in place and be testing it regularly.”

Electrical cars EV ‘Never rung me back’

In another case, one family member told researchers they had contacted the safer custody line in a prison 20-25 times between January and June this year.

“About 40% of the time someone picks up and says that they will check on him and then ring me back…but they have never rung me back,” the relative said.

“On one occasion I left a message four times before they rang me back.”

The Ministry of Justice said: “The findings of this report are unacceptable and we have already taken immediate action to address the concerns, with governors ensuring that family members are able to speak to staff if they have information about a prisoner’s wellbeing.”

The department has asked senior managers to give a personal guarantee that “effective communications systems” are in place within each prison – and, to underline the urgency, have asked for this to be done by the end of the day.

Electrical cars EV Prisoner self-harming has increased dramatically

Individuals self-harming per 1,000 prisoners, England and Wales

The study comes as a separate report by the Commons Justice Committee said the prison system is in an “enduring crisis of safety and decency”.

MPs criticised announcements about building new prison places to accommodate tougher sentences.

“Too often we have seen what might be called ‘policy by press notice’ without a clear vision for the future of the prison system,” the report said.

“While new prison places are welcome, they do nothing to improve the condition of the current prison estate, much of which is in an appalling state of disrepair,” it adds.

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Electrical cars EV Essex lorry deaths: The deadly people smuggling trail leading to France

Electrical cars EV

electrical cars  EV Photo montage of missing Vietnamese

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AFP/Family handouts

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Details of some of those missing, feared dead in the lorry, are gradually emerging

Stories and photos of those thought to have died in the refrigerated lorry found in England last week often lay a trail back through France.

Like Nguyen Van Hung, who was last seen leaving Marseille for Paris.

His father in Vietnam told us he had got a phone call from the “organisers” at 07: 00 Vietnam time, just after the lorry had arrived in the UK.

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AFP

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Nguyen Van Hung’s father had been promised a phone call as soon as his son had crossed the Channel

They said his son would soon call him, after which the balance of £10,000 ($12,900; €11,500) must be paid.

No call came. And when Hung’s father tried to call them back, the number was not working.

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Family Handout

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Nguyen Dinh Luong has been named by relatives as a possible victim

Nguyen Dinh Luong had also been living in France for the past 18 months, working in a Paris restaurant. Ten days ago, he called his relatives in Vietnam to tell them he was leaving for the UK.

His father told us he had tried to stop him.

Last week, with Luong still missing, doctors took blood samples from the family.

A Vietnamese man who had taken the same illegal journey from Zeebrugge in Belgium to London last week told us he knew 12 of those thought to have died. He did not want us to reveal his identity.

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AFP

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Bui Thi Nhung is among those missing

“I left for the UK a day before the 39 people who died,” he said via Facebook from the UK. “There were seven people in my lorry. It was not refrigerated so breathing wasn’t a problem.”

He said he had travelled from Vietnam via Russia, where he lived in a warehouse for a month, before crossing woodland, arriving in Germany, and then in France.

“I came to the UK to find a job,” he told us. “But now I’m in shock and I can’t do anything.”

Read more on this story from Lucy:

France is a bottleneck in the smugglers’ network. It’s seen as a springboard to London, but while it is easy to get to France from Germany, Belgium or even Poland, it is much harder – and more expensive – to make it from here to the UK.

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Getty Images

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Le Minh Tuan, pictured here, fears his 30-year-old son, Le Van Ha, was among the dead in Essex

“The boarding places change all the time,” says Thi Hiep Nguyen, one of France’s leading experts on Vietnamese trafficking. “It’s quicker if they can find a truck that’s going directly from Belgium or Germany, and they can avoid Paris. But only the richest can afford to go that way.”

Hiep’s report into the networks here quotes a Vietnamese smuggler, arrested in France in 2012, who said the money went to a “big boss” in Paris.

“They’re not just in Paris, they’re everywhere,” she told me. “There are bosses in every country in Europe, including the UK. There are a lot of them around Paris. They change location all the time, but generally around the southern suburbs.”

Police have sometimes received tip-offs about trafficking hostels.

Last year, French media reported the discovery of 24 Vietnamese migrants locked inside a shuttered building in the Paris suburb of Villejuif. All but two of them were women and children.

Hiep says more than half of those found dead last week are thought to be from one small area in Vietnam, though no identities have yet been confirmed.

They could not pay for the most expensive kind of crossing, she says. They did not have that kind of money. They paid with their lives instead.

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Media captionThirty nine bodies were found in the trailer container

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