An Aug. 14, 1912, blurb in the New Zealand newspaper Rodney and Otamatea Times, Waitemata and Kaipara Gazette, reads, “The furnaces of the world are now burning about 2,000,000,000 tons of coal a year. When this is burned, uniting with oxygen, it adds about 7,000,000,000 tons of carbon dioxide to the atmosphere yearly. This tends to make the air a more effective blanket for the earth and to raise its temperature. The effect may be considerable in a few centuries.” The headline reads: “Coal Consumption Affecting Climate Change.” As Snopes.com reported , an image of the text was shared in 2016 on the Facebook page “Sustainable Business Network NZ.” It is also available in a newspaper archive on the National Library of New Zealand’s website. The same blurb was published in an Australian newspaper in July 1912 and can also be found in an Australian online archive , reports Snopes.com, which says the clip actually dates back to March that year and an issue of the magazine Popular Mechanics . As scientists have found, heat-trapping gases from the burning of fossil fuels, like coal, are the main drivers of climate change. According to the International Energy Agency , coal today supplies one-third of all energy used worldwide. It also accounts for 40 percent of electricity generation. “Despite legitimate concerns about air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions, coal use will continue to be significant in the future,” the agency says.
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South Korean capital gets ‘first deaf taxi drivers’ By News from Elsewhere… …as found by BBC Monitoring These are external links and will open in a new window Image caption Dual tablets with voice-to-text capability enable passengers to connect with hearing-impaired drivers South Korea’s capital Seoul has seen its first ever deaf taxi drivers take to the road this week, thanks to new software that’s been launched to help reduce the local stigma of hiring hearing-impaired people, it’s reported. According to the Korean Times news website, two deaf taxi drivers began transporting passengers around the city this week, aided by software developed by the local Coactus start-up . Describing how it works, the Yonhap News Agency says that dual tablets have been installed in the front and back seat of taxis , which is linked to the firm’s “Goyohan Taxi” or “Silent Taxi” app. The app includes voice-to-text conversion, and enables passengers to specify both destination and preferred drop-off point, as well as their payment method of choice. It was developed by a group of students in the city, led by computer engineering graduate Song Min-pyo. Image caption CEO Song Min-pyo hopes the software will help break the stigma attached to hearing-impaired drivers in South Korea “We wanted to provide deaf people with more job opportunities,” Mr Song told the Korea Times. “We knew Koreans would step out of a taxi the moment the driver tried to communicate with a notepad and a pen… so we developed this app.” Sign-language hack lets Amazon Alexa respond to gestures Mr Song says he was inspired by an initiative launched by taxi hire firm Uber in May 2015 to promote awareness of hearing-impairment, by adding special features to its app for its hard-of-hearing drivers. Yonhap says that Coactus is hoping that more deaf drivers on the road will help break stigma across South Korea about hearing-impaired drivers. Some 255,000 people have hearing impairments in South Korea, according to recent Ministry of Health and Welfare statistics . Image caption South Korea’s Road Traffic Act allows anyone to drive if they can hear over 55 decibels
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The Spectator website says that, unlike every other pop star of the 1960s and 1970s, she would have been among the finest of the previous generations, too. It concludes its tribute by declaring: “The Queen is dead and we shall never hear her like again.” The Daily Mail leads on the call by MPs to relax rules surrounding e-cigarettes. It describes the suggestion by the Commons Science and Technology Committee as “hugely controversial”. The paper says leading scientists have accused the MPs of largely taking evidence from researchers who have published studies positive to e-cigarettes and of ignoring evidence pointing out health risks. According to the lead in the Daily Express, councils are ignoring a plea to honour the dead of World War One. It says the former head of the army, Lord Dannatt, has revealed that only 160 out of 433 councils are backing a project marking the centenary of the end of the war. The remainder have either refused or not bothered to reply to his letter urging them to get behind plans to install 6ft aluminium silhouettes of soldiers across the UK. The Local Government Association – which represents councils – tells the paper that town halls are commemorating the centenary in different ways, including offering grants to community groups and co-ordinating parades. The Daily Telegraph highlights research showing that the average GP now works less than three-and-a-half days a week and just one in 20 trainee doctors intends to do the job full-time.
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