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Location Privacy Goes to Washington

first_imgTestifying before a congressional hearing in late February, Mike Altschul with the Wireless Association was blunt: Federal mobile phone privacy policy is undefined and the privacy guidelines for location-based services written in 2008 are obsolete.The hearing on consumer privacy was the fifth in a series that seeks to evaluate and eventually legislate location-based privacy issues. It comes none too soon. The recent flood of location based apps and services has significantly shifted liabilities from mobile carriers to app developers and end-users. As Congressman and hearing chair Bobby Rush of Illinois said, Yesterday there was Facebook, and in the not-too-distant future we will be encountering something more akin to a “Placebook.”While the Wireless Association works on its 2010 guidelines, and while Congress deliberates, what’s going on with all our geolocation privacy rights? Do we have a right to control what location-based advertisers do with our info once they have it? Do we have a right to ensure that law enforcement and government agencies don’t abuse our easily obtained mobile data streams? Are our children safe? What does social science research say about all these changes? These are the many questions that this congressional hearing sought to address. Here’s a breakdown: What does the privacy research tell us?Lorrie Cranor, direct of CyLab Usable Privacy and Security Laboratory at Carnegie Melon University testified about her research into how end user’s react to the implication of privacy loss due to location-based technologies. She also reported on her survey of the most popular applications and systems.“In August 2009 we evaluated 89 location sharing applications and systems to determine the types of privacy protections each offered,” she said. “Overall, we found that most of these applications provided fairly limited privacy controls and about a third of them did not provide readily accessible privacy policies on their websites. We reviewed the websites for these applications again in February 2010 and found similar results for the 84 services still in existence at that time.” Who will have access to our information? Last Tuesday we reported in our Ads with Eyes post about a report by the Center for Democracy and Technology on advertising abuses that mobile end-users may face. The center is also concerned about abuses of law enforcement and government agencies related to their use of location-based information.At last week’s hearing John B. Morris, general counsel for the center presented the case for why the Electronic Communications Privacy Act should be updated to protect location information from inappropriate disclosure to government. He highlighted how recent court proceedings and local government surveillance protocols are creating contradictory rulings, unclear jurisdictions and generally snowballing into a fundamental lack of privacy protection for U.S. citizens. What’s the latest wording of potential new laws and guidelines?The preliminary language of almost all future U.S. laws begin in hearings such as these. In his testimony, Tony Bernard, VP of Useful Networks, sought to outline some of the most essential elements of this new language.“In order to derive an end user’s location from any source, the end user must be presented with notice of how, when and by whom location will be used,” he said. Additionally, said Altschul, senior VP and general counsel for the Wireless Association, “Notice must be provided in plain, easily understood language. It must not be misleading, and if combined with other terms or conditions, the portion pertaining to the location-based service must be conspicuous.”How will kids and young adults be affected? Anne Collier, Co-Director, ConnectSafely.org testified that new technologies are not as much of a threat to children as we may believe, and the real issue is the quality of parenting and supervision that kids are getting. As far as kids’ potential for future use of location based services, she presented startling data. “U.S. teens now send or receive an average of 3,146 text messages a month and 9- to 12-year-olds 1,146, according to the latest figures from Nielsen,” she said. “For them, a text isn’t like a phone call, it’s part of a conversation as well as of the ongoing flow (or seemingly 24/7 drama) of school life. But texting is only one of young people’s social tools. There is as yet no data on teens’ mobile social mapping or LBS use, but we know that more than 65 million, or about a third, of Facebook users of all ages currently access the social site through their mobile devices.” Tags:#Government#Location#web deane rimerman Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting What comes next? At the end of the hearing, Rush said, “In closing, let me state clearly, for the record, and especially for those interested consumer groups, industries, and government regulators who have been monitoring our series of hearings that, with the information we’ll obtain from today’s hearing, we have now learned enough to take the next major step.”What should that next step be? Are you ready for more clearly defined location-based privacy protections? How can companies who are currently building applications and services keep themselves out of the courts? Do we really need more regulation to resolve this? What do you think? Hands photo by Monika Leon. D.C. photo by Barb Ballard. A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Related Posts last_img read more

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5 Reasons I’m Switching From Android To The iPhone 5S

first_imgTags:#Android#Apple#iPhone#iPhone 5S Role of Mobile App Analytics In-App Engagement What it Takes to Build a Highly Secure FinTech … I love Android—I really do. From my HTC EVO 4G to my Nexus 4, through rooting, modding and waiting patiently for the platform to find its feet, Android has never done me wrong. But my mounting frustrations with what I want out of a smartphone are leading me back to Apple’s green pastures yet again. 1. iOS 7Plenty of tech pundits would dismiss Jony Ive’s iOS 7 revolution as an iterative, superficial update, one with candy colors and a few tricks to make us go ooh. Me? I’ll be leaping into its flat, bubblegum design with arms outstretched. Ever since Mathias Duarte got involved with Android (circa Honeycomb), I’ve been reeling in its design-geek friendly visual siren song. Now that Ive has lured iOS out of its visual dark age, I’m all ears. If I ever see the word skeuomorph again it’ll be too soon. 2. Google Voice Is BrokenFor the past three years, since I moved away from New York, I’ve relied on Google Voice for 100% of my texts and calls. Ask any Voice user: that’s quite a risk. And as much as I love clinging to the free VoIP platform and its mobile operating system agnosticism, the app just gets buggier and buggier. Sure, the Google Hangouts roll-in is on the way, but it’s too little too late from my absolute favorite yet wholly stagnant app. iMessage, group texts and MMS, here I come! 3. CameraWhen I shoot photos on my phone, I intend to share them on Instagram, my favorite app in the known universe. But Instagram on Android has a serious image compression problem. Using a Nexus 4, I can take my brightest, most crisp shot into Instagram to share with the world… and see it butchered into pixelated oblivion. I do not make a habit of mincing pixels, but there’s a systemic, unresolved brokenness to the Instagram for Android app that renders it nigh unusable.Sure, a non-iPhone camera may have more megapixels and spec sheet bells and whistles on paper. But at the end of the day it’s all about how your mobile hardware’s image processing plays nice with apps—or if it doesn’t. Apple’s built-in image signal processor (ISP) is largely to thank for the iPhone’s qualitative image superiority , and it should be better than ever on the A7—which I assume doesn’t hold a grudge against Instagram. 4. To 5C Or Not To 5C…From the get go, I was drawn to the 5C, and part of me is still genuinely intrigued about the device in spite of the fact that its guts are very familiar. The iPhone 5C’s unibody polycarbonate casing is like owning a Lumia without having to deal with a Lumia—or Windows Phone. Awesome, right?Well, as much as my tactile reptile brain wants the 5C (Ooh colors! Smooooth!) I realize that the 5S, with its A7 chip, and sophisticated camera processing are way more the speed for any proper early adopter crazy person like myself. But this doesn’t mean I’m not buying a Connect 4 case, okay?5. Size—Simple As ThatEvery time I scratch my head wondering why everyone and their literal mom has an iPhone, I remember one simple anatomical fact: we ladies, on the whole, have smaller paws. I love Android to death—I’ve been modding my Android phones into unrecognizability for years now—but I can’t hack the hardware to suit my medium-sized lady hands hand any better.At the end of the day, if I can’t reach all of my apps with a swift one-handed gesture, it’s all for naught. My eyes prefer to drink in a wide 4.7-inch display like that of the Nexus 4 or the HTC One X (my last, last Android phone)… but my hands constantly fumble—and my phone teeters perpetually toward taking a nosedive.It’s often overlooked because it’s just that simple, but the iPhone anatomically agnostic appeal is a huge part of its ubiquity. There are no flagship devices from Android that I can wrap my hand around comfortably. And that’s a major nail in its coffin from this Android lover. Women aren’t just a marketing segment—we’re half of the population.  taylor hatmakercenter_img Why IoT Apps are Eating Device Interfaces The Rise and Rise of Mobile Payment Technology Related Posts last_img read more

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Add Depth To Your Project With After Effects 3D Lighting

first_imgMotion Graphics guru Chris Meyer shares a quick trick for increasing visual interest in your After Effects projects.If you’re into motion design and After Effects you’re likely already familiar with AE training by production duo Trish and Chris Meyer. In a recent Lynda.com After Effects Apprentice training course Chris demonstrates how to create an opening title for a medical themed project.In this sample from that online training course Chris shows how adding a 3D light to your AE project can instantly give it more depth and focus your viewers attention to an area of the frame.   The short video tutorial covers adding a vignette to your AE project, using a 3D light’s fall off feature to focus attention on the foreground while darkening the background and casting shawdows between your composition’s layers.For AE pros this may be a bit elementary, but it is a great reminder that the 3D light in After Effects is a powerful tool to make your compositions pop and give visual interest.  Have a look here:From After Effects Apprentice 16: Creating a Medical Opening TitleTutorial video originally seen on ProVideoCoalition.comlast_img read more

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Video Tutorial: How to Use a Vehicle as a Dolly System

first_imgFilmmakers have plenty of tools at their disposal — some more expensive than others. But sometimes, all you need is a car and a crew.As an indie filmmaker, I’ve found that using my car as a portable stabilizer is incredibly useful. From simple setups to complex angles, cars are a great way to diversify your coverage on a budget in outdoor locations.The following tips require proper safety preparation. I do not recommend using any of these shots unless you’re safe and secure and those around you understand the procedure. There’s no value in the shot if someone gets hurt in the process. Through the WindowThis setup is the simplest, and it’s one you’ve probably already used yourself. That being said, there’s still lots you can get from this angle. I like to capture wide establishing and voyeuristic atmosphere shots through the front and side windows of any moving vehicle. It’s great coverage for building scope and creating movement.Out the WindowIf filming through a window isn’t enough, try filming out of it. Out-of-the-window gimbal-work is one of my favorite ways to capture high- (and low) speed tracking shots of other vehicles.Tailgating ItIf you’re feeling a little more confident with your vehicle video skills, then take it up a notch and film out the back of your vehicle.  The trick is to dangle your camera low out of the rear of your car. This can capture some beautiful slow dolly shots, nice push-ins and even some detailed slider moves. SUVs, trucks, and vans are the best vehicles for capturing this type of footage. (Always make sure you’re properly strapped in place.)Similar to filming out of the back, you can capture great footage from the side of your car with the sliding door open. I would only recommend you capture this shot with a vehicle that has a sliding door that locks open. This angle can get you some really nice fast paced tracking shots of people, animals, and landscapes.The key thing to remember is that you don’t always need “film gear” to capture a cinematic shot. Most of the time, a creative solution is right at your fingertips — from using household items to borrowing your mom’s SUV.Looking for more filmmaking tutorials? We’ve got you covered.Understanding Keyframe Interpolation in Adobe After EffectsVideo Tutorial: How to Build a $25 Overhead Camera RigVideo Tutorial: The Secrets Behind Lighting a Shot with FireDIY Filmmaking: How to Build Your Own Dolly for $50Video Tutorial: Better, Faster, Stronger Editing Tipslast_img read more

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Kobe Bryant wins Oscar for animated short ‘Dear Basketball’

first_imgGoogle honors food scientist, banana ketchup inventor and war hero Maria Orosa Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH View comments Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Padda doesn’t regret benching star players early vs UE Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university PLAY LIST 01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City The 39-year-old sports superstar believed the nomination validated that he could succeed off the court.“As basketball players, we’re told to shut up and dribble,” Bryant said on stage. “I’m glad we did a little bit more than that.”He thanked his wife, Vanessa, and his three daughters, naming each of them. He spoke a few words of Italian — a language he learned as a child growing up in Italy — and closed by telling them, “You are my inspiration.”ADVERTISEMENT Read Next MOST READ Kobe Bryant poses in the press room with the Oscar for Best Animated Short Film for “Dear Basketball,” during the 90th Annual Academy Awards on March 4, 2018, in Hollywood, California. / AFP PHOTO / FREDERIC J. BROWNLOS ANGELES — Kobe Bryant is a winner in retirement, too.The former Los Angeles Lakers star won an Oscar in the animated short category for “Dear Basketball,” a poem he wrote after ending his 20-year career on the court in 2016.ADVERTISEMENTcenter_img He’ll add it to an already jammed trophy collection that includes five NBA championships with the Lakers, two Olympic gold medals, NBA Finals most valuable player awards, a league MVP award and four All-Star game MVP awards.As executive producer, Bryant accepted his golden Oscar statue from “Star Wars” star Mark Hamill on Sunday night. He shared the award with Disney animator Glen Keane.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSLillard, Anthony lead Blazers over ThunderSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutAmong those offering their congratulations via Twitter were Hall of Famers Magic Johnson, Bill Russell and Shaquille O’Neal, Bryant’s former Lakers teammate who admitted, “I’m jealous lol.”Since hanging up his basketball shoes, Bryant has delved into business (a new Nike shoe) and various forms of storytelling. LOOK: Iya Villania meets ‘Jumanji: The Next Level’ cast in Mexico Pussycat Dolls set for reunion tour after 10-year hiatus Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC LATEST STORIES Families in US enclave in north Mexico hold sad Thanksgiving Typhoon ‘Tisoy’ threatens Games John Lloyd Cruz a dashing guest at Vhong Navarro’s weddinglast_img read more

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MLS announces FIFA 18 gaming league

first_imgMLS Major League Soccer announces FIFA 18 gaming league Seth Vertelney 00:18 1/13/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) FIFA 18 MLS & Calcio A SBCs EA Sports MLS eSports Gaming The league will launch a competitive gaming circuit featuring some of the top FIFA 18 players in North America Major League Soccer has announced the formation of eMLS, a new competitive FIFA 18 league that will feature representatives from 19 MLS teams. Th eMLS competition will feature the best FIFA 18 players from the U.S. and Canada to determine who will represent MLS in the EA Sports FIFA 18 Global Series Playoffs, and eventually the FIFA eWorld Cup 2018.“We are excited to unveil eMLS,” Gary Stevenson, president and managing director of MLS Business Ventures said in a news release. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player “This step forward into competitive gaming is a key component in our partnership with EA Sports to promote deeper engagement and connections between MLS supporters and the millions of FIFA players around the world.”The new competitive gaming league will culminate with eMLS Cup, which will take place at PAX East, a gaming culture festival in Boston from April 5-8.“We’re honored to partner with MLS within the EA Sports FIFA 18 Global Series as we continue to help grow competitive gaming and soccer in North America,” Todd Sitrin, senior vice president and general manager of the competitive gaming division at EA said. “We engage millions of soccer fans daily through FIFA and attract many more who view our competitions around the world. With the eMLS we accelerate our growth as players compete on the road to the FIFA eWorld Cup 2018.”last_img read more

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a month agoSouthend Utd set to pass on hiring Henrik Larsson

first_imgTagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Southend Utd set to pass on hiring Henrik Larssonby Paul Vegasa month agoSend to a friendShare the loveSouthend United are set to pass on hiring Henrik Larsson as new manager.The Swede’s lack of experience and tight purse strings at Roots Hall are reportedly to blame for the stall in negotiations with the ex-Manchester United, Barcelona and Celtic star.The 48-year-old was a guest of honour at Stadium MK as the Shrimpers recorded their first League win of the season on Saturday – a 1-0 win over MK Dons.Larsson resigned as Helsingborgs manager last month but his wage demands could be too high for Southend, says Sky Sports News.It is also claimed the club were apprehensive about Larsson’s lack of management experience in England. last_img read more

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Kolkata Paying homage to Mahatma Gandhi on his 15

first_imgKolkata: Paying homage to Mahatma Gandhi on his 150th birth anniversary on Wednesday, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said the historic Gandhi Bhavan, that has been renovated by the state government, will be inaugurated on the occasion. “Homage to #MahatmaGandhi ji on his 150th birth anniversary. We will pay tribute to the Father of the Nation at his statue on Mayo Road, #Kolkata. To mark #GandhiJayanti, the historic Gandhi Bhavan in Beleghata, renovated by #Bangla Govt, will be inaugurated today,” Banerjee tweeted. Also Read – Bengal family worships Muslim girl as Goddess Durga in Kumari Puja “The #Bangla Govt has taken up many other initiatives to celebrate #Gandhi150 anniversary, including setting up a university dedicated to #MahatmaGandhi ji in Purba Medinipur district,” she said in another tweet. Rare photographs capturing Mahatma Gandhi’s 1947 stay at Beliaghata area here and articles used by him during the over three-week period when he tried to douse the flames of communal violence, will be on display from Wednesday at the house that hosted him. It has now been developed as a museum. In August and September of 1947, away from the celebration of Independence, Mahatma Gandhi chose to be in Kolkata with some of his followers to calm the rioters down. He stayed in the Beliaghata building during his stay.last_img read more

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Take a moment and look around you will realise ho

first_imgTake a moment and look around, you will realise how dependent we are on plastics. It has become an unavoidable part of our lives in the past three decades or so. According to the recent UN Environment Programme report, the world produces 400 million tonnes single-use plastic (SUP) waste annually (47 per cent of the total plastic waste). It is estimated that only 9 per cent of plastic is getting recycled worldwide. Like any other country, waste management is a pressing issue in India, especially with the unceasing growth of consumerism throughout the nation. Interestingly, almost 60 per cent of the total plastic waste generated in India gets recycled while the remaining escapes into the environment. However, most of this plastic is down-cycled. At this juncture, India needs robust and stringent waste management tools to substantially improve the situation. Also Read – Hijacking Bapu’s legacy Emerging shift Since the 1980s, many global north countries have predicted the inexorable unintended consequences of using plastics in the long run and began to address the matter at a slow pace by adopting legal measures, instruments or punitive actions to dwindle the distribution and consumption of plastics across these countries. Subsequently, countries such as Rwanda, Kenya, Indonesia and many other global south nations followed the lead. In 2008, Rwanda became a pioneer in banning disposal plastic among the developing nations and has transformed into one of the cleanest nations on the globe, in spite of its financial constraints. Also Read – The future is here!Conversely, Ethiopia’s ban on import and production of carry bags thicker than 330 microns, plateaued out in a short period. This is the matter with many developing countries including India, despite strengthening their stance against packaging plastics, they fail to effectively implement it due to the dearth of infrastructure, enforcement, and availability of affordable alternatives. Besides this, most policies cease to exist due to impracticality and the absence of penalties to bring a long-lasting change. A form of punitive punishment binds citizens from illegal activities. For example, in the case of Kenya, about 500 people have been imprisoned for the offence of distributing or manufacturing plastics and some were fined between Kenya Shillings 50,000 and 150,000. Currently, about 25 African countries have taken legal initiatives to curb the consumption of SUPs and Kenya, South Africa, Rwanda are exploring sustainable disposal methods for their plastics waste. If these bills are diligently implemented, then they are one step ahead in fulfilling six targets of Sustainable Development Goals: Good health and well-being Clean water and sanitation Sustainable cities and communities Responsible consumption and production Life below water Life on land Apparently, various governments across the world have come up with creative policies to mitigate the plastic threat, for instance, a new policy was introduced in one of the cities of Indonesia to collect used plastic bottles in exchange for free bus rides across the city. Whereas, the UK government passed a policy (which is yet to come into effect from 2022) that encourages the use of recycled package products among the producers by imposing plastic packaging tax on production and importation. Other special attempts pushed by South Africa is a memorandum of understanding, signed by actors in the plastic sector with the government to monitor efficiencies of various stakeholders viz, manufacturers; the Ministry of Tourism; packaging industries and the Department of Environmental Affairs to reduce the usage of disposable plastics. It’s quite similar in Singapore, which includes a broader set of actors from the private sector, companies, shopping mall managers who are committed to reduce packaging waste by five years. This approach thrusts the actors to use other sustainable alternatives instead of SUPs in the value chain system. Additionally, an emerging practice, “precycling” (bringing own mugs and reusable bags), in South Korea’s supermarkets, grocery stores and cafes is curbing the consumption of disposables. Preventing single-use plastics It’s time to rethink the way we manufacture, use and dispose of plastic items in the most favourable way. While banning plastics in some countries such as Rwanda and Zanzibar (in Tanzania) has effectively countered main challenges. However, long-term impacts and the overall problem of the issue can be addressed only by establishing better waste management systems viz, by improving source segregation; designing an effective municipal solid waste (MSW) plans; ensuring collection and transportation of segregated waste and encouraging the country to identify and use affordable plastic alternative products. Besides national-level bans on SUPs, there are regional leaders such as, January Makamba (Union and Environment Minister of Tanzania), Paul Kagame (the then President of Rwanda), Li Ganjie (Chinese Minister for Environmental Protection) among others who have raised their voices to address the issue and signed agreements to prevent the movement and production of single-use plastics across borders. The objective can be achieved only if the governments solemnly take active steps within their countries. So to halt the illegal movement of plastics in cross-borders and to promote the use of sustainable packaging substitutes, governments of Rwanda, Kenya, Uganda, South Sudan, and the United Republic of Tanzania signed the East Africa Community Polythene Material Control Bill in 2011. This gave the signatories to have common environment control regulations, incentives and standards like Burundi is planning on adopting East African Community Material Control Bill 2011 in early 2020. On the other side of the world, the EU’s policy on packaging waste dates back to the 1980s. It introduced Directive 85/339/EEC to address the issues on production, use, recycling and refilling of containers for consumption and on disposal of consumed plastic waste. Other directives such as Directive EU 2015/720 (in 2015) and amendment of Directive 94/62/EC states how to tackle the problem regarding the consumption of lightweight plastic carrier bag. This Directive obliges member states to reduce the per capita consumption of plastic bags to 90 per cent by the end of 2019. The responsibility falls on the shoulders of the government to adopt a comprehensive strategy that can prevent the excessive generation of disposable plastics and then ascertain techniques to sustainably manage the end-of-life of their products. This includes paving a smooth legal roadmap for extended producers responsibility (EPR), co-processing and incineration in the nation. It not only resolves the issue of treating the waste but also creates jobs and business opportunities. As shown by Germany which provides employment opportunity for about 250,000 people and generates a revenue of 70 billion euros. End-of-life management comes later in the waste management hierarchy. Nations across the globe have a plethora of post-use disposal mechanisms ranging from Deposit Refund Systems, Targeted Product Taxes, Advanced Disposal Fees to Voluntary Agreements Supported by Regulations. Certain countries have taken distinctive measures like supporting recycling and recovery structures by indicating the role of EPR and PROs, etc. South Africa for instance, passed National pricing strategy for waste management which includes EPR fee along with custom and excise duty on the product. While this policy has had negative implications on trade and infrastructure for the country, EPRs adopted in other nations show a more positive outcome such as the Singapore Packaging Agreement of 2007 which has led to the reduction of packing waste by 46,000 tonnes. Further, this approach has encouraged the producers to reduce the thickness of packaging items and redesigning products so as to eliminate unnecessary packaging. Besides, spreading awareness and educating consumers about the concerns regarding plastic waste guarantees a future generation of conscious consumers. Global challenges Plastic is ubiquitous, it’s visibly the backbone of globalisation. As we know, eliminating it is quite difficult, although half of the world is struggling to encounter this threat with reasonable and pragmatic solutions. Passive attitude found among the developing countries hinders advancements due to their inadequate legal provisions, waste infrastructures, resource constraints and lack of awareness among the public. For an effective nation-wide Waste Management performance, it is imperative for the government, local bodies and civilians to achieve a common target. For example, the Indonesian government introduced a three-month trial program in 2016 which levied a fee of 200 rupiahs on plastic bags in 23 of its cities. This led to a 55 per cent reduction in the use of SUPs, which is a remarkable feat. Lamentably, following the trial period, retailers refused to proceed further since it slowed down their business and there was no legal base to continue charging the customers. Finally, this led to the failure of excise on plastic bags in 2018. Furthermore in Kenya, the banning of plastics can disrupt the economy as well. When carry bags were phased out in Kenya, 3 per cent workforce lost their job. In addition to the challenges mentioned above, developing countries are unable to fully discharge their duties due to financial constraints and lack of capacity. However, this can be met by levying a tax on plastics which can, in turn, meet the operating cost of waste management. Adding to the failure of policy frameworks, plastic industry lobbyists are more powerful than central regimes. They are capable of quashing prolonged attempts of the national government in banning SUPs. For example, the government of Malawi passed the Environment Management (plastics) Regulations in 2015 which effected a national ban on plastics greater than 60 microns. This was a second attempt by the government to phase out SUPs after initial attempts to ban the plastics in 2012 was dismissed by a court order lobbied by the Plastic Manufacturers Association. The implementation of the ban was again delayed due to the involvement of the court and Plastic Manufacturers Association. Thereby, weakening the enforcement of the policy on the grounds. United States, Australia and many other countries were left in the lurch when China enacted its National Sword Policy in 2018. China, a major importer of plastic waste in the recycling market, out of the blue banned the imports of plastic scraps (polyethelene, polystyrene, polyethylene terephthalate and Polyvinyl chloride) to recycle and accentuated the debate of global plastic waste crisis. Following the ban, coasts of its neighbouring nations like Vietnam, Malaysia, Thailand, etc, faced illegal dumping of plastic debris while exporters of plastic waste saw an unprecedented accumulation of untreated plastics in their cities. An urgency emerged among the exporters to seek for alternatives. Therefore, in view of the above, combatting these challenges will require robust National Action Plans; establishing and monitoring domestic recycling; incentivising the recyclers; promoting sustainable alternatives of plastic; setting criteria and standards for packaging plastics; life cycle and cost analysis of plastic alternatives; elucidating legal rules and cooperation among the local bodies and laymen, among others to bring the change. DOWN TO EARTH (The views expressed are strictly personal)last_img read more

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Kolkata The death of an elderly woman in Bansdron

first_imgKolkata: The death of an elderly woman in Bansdroni on Wednesday morning triggered tension the area. According to the police, on Wednesday morning, residents of Gitanjali apartment and people in the neighbourhood of Bansdroni Park sensed a foul smell in their area.When some of them tried to find the source of the smell, they found that it was coming from the flat of Keka Mukherjee. Bansdroni police station was informed. The police found the door of Mukherjee’s flat was locked from inside. Later, police personnel broke the door and found the body was decomposed state lying on the sofa in the drawing room. Also Read – Bengal family worships Muslim girl as Goddess Durga in Kumari PujaThe police suspect that Mukherjee had died at least two days ago. Apparently no injury mark was found on the body and no suicide note was recovered. After sending the body for autopsy examination, the police came to know from local residents that Mukherjee used to live alone in the flat. Mukherjee has a brother who stays somewhere else. The police have managed to get his mobile number. Investigators are trying to contact him. Primarily, an unnatural death case has been lodged at the Bansdroni police station. Earlier, on Monday night, a similar incident took place at Sreebhumi in Lake Town, where an elderly lady died mysteriously. The lady lived with her mentally-ill son. Local residents had experienced a foul smell emanating from a house. The woman was found dead and the body had started decomposing.last_img read more