Show them what you’re worth: 4 ways to earn more as a freelance writer

first_imgIf you’re a freelance writer, you know all too well how difficult it can be to make a decent living – especially if you’re just starting out. Not only do you have to find prospective clients, but you must also convince them that you’re qualified to do the work, and more importantly, that you deserve to get paid (fairly) for it.You know how much you’re worth (or maybe you don’t: read this), but how do you prove to a prospective client the value of your services? Here are 4 methods to help you scale your freelance business and increase your earning potential in the process.Showcase Your WorkAs a freelancer, you want to do more than just scrape by; you want to live comfortably doing the work you love. To that end, you must show prospective clients your value with an impressive portfolio that illustrates your level of skill and expertise.One way to do this is to create an attractive digital portfolio that includes your resume and work samples. Not only is this a practical way to showcase your work, but it also proves that you’re tech savvy, and gives you the opportunity to express your personal brand, gaining you more desirable clients who are willing to pay more for your clear value.Depending on your level of technical know-how, you can build a portfolio on your own, or use a website building platform such as Wix, Squarespace, or Behance. Be sure to include your resume, bio, and work samples from past clients. If you’re new, create a blog to illustrate your writing ability and express personal or professional interests.Be ConsultativeWhether you’re a freelance blogger, copywriter, or features writer, it helps to have at least a basic understanding of your clients’ fundamental business goals, and where you’re efforts fit in.If you’re writing for a brand, their ultimate goal is to sell a product and their path to doing that might be to engage the prospective customer, form a relationship or really sell the merits of a particular product. How do your blog posts fit into their overall marketing plan?Understanding your clients’ overall needs and the methods they use to meet them will enable you to think critically about your assignments, and provide expertise and advice along with your work. Now, you’re not just a freelance writer, but also a marketing consultant, and with the proper experience you can bill accordingly.Learn a Technical SkillLearning a technical skill is a crucial way to level up in your career as a freelancer, and make more money in the process. For instance, if you’re a writer, but have always been intrigued by website development and design, it may be time for you to combine your interests.As a writer, you’re used to developing content with the reader in mind; therefore, you’ll likely have a knack for thinking critically about a site’s usability and function. Why not try your hand at front-end web development or user experience design? Now the client can hire you for their copywriting and development needs.Build Lasting RelationshipsAs a freelancer, it’s more productive for you to develop a rapport with existing clients, rather than spend your days constantly searching for one-off jobs. For one thing, you’ll have more time to actually do the work you love, but you’ll also be able to increase your earning potential as you prove your value and up your level of responsibility within the organization.Make sure to view every job as a foundation upon which you can build a relationship (especially if you respect the client, and enjoy the work you’re doing for them). The tips above will help you increase the caliber of jobs you attract, but make sure to go above and beyond your expected assignment (be consultative!), and follow up after a project has finished. They may not need you right away, but stay in touch and they may consider working with you again a few months down the road.Emily Pope (@GoEKP) is a content producer at General Assembly, an educational institution dedicated to creating a global community of individuals empowered to pursue work they love. GA offers full and part-time courses and workshops on the most relevant skills of the 21st century – from web development and user experience design, to business fundamentals, data science, product management, and digital marketing.last_img read more

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Mexican judge orders soccer star Rafa Marquez’s bank accounts unfrozen

first_imgA judge in Mexico ordered on Thursday that bank accounts linked to businesses owned by soccer star Rafa Marquez be unfrozen, following a designation in August by the US government that the sportsman was linked to a suspected drug trafficker.Last month, the US Treasury Department sanctioned Marquez, who is one of Mexico’s best known athletes, along with more than 20 other Mexican citizens for suspected financial links to accused drug kingpin Raul Flores Hernandez.The move came after US President Donald Trump promised to crush Mexico’s drug gangs, and the Treasury Department had described it as “the largest single Kingpin Act action against a Mexican drug cartel network that OFAC (the Office of Foreign Assets Control) has designated.”Marquez, who hails from the cartel-riddled state of Michoacan, has forcefully denied the accusations that he has ties to Hernandez, who is suspected of having links to the Sinaloa and Jalisco New Generation drug cartels.According to local media, Federal Judge Luz Maria Ortega issued the provisional order to unfreeze Marquez’s accounts.A document issued from the court did not include her name – though it is common in drug-related cases for judge’s names to be withheld in order to protect them.The document did not detail the reasoning behind the judge’s decision. It noted that the order applies to two bank accounts, while a third account also belonging to Marquez was still being reviewed.Marquez, 38, currently plays for Guadalajara-based pro soccer club Atlas. He played in Europe for club sides FC Barcelona and Monaco, and still sometime captains the national side having represented his country in four World Cup soccer tournaments.advertisementlast_img read more

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Autobiographies, biographies to be flavour of 2018

first_img(Eds: Adding a para)By Zafri Mudasser NofilNew Delhi, Jan 21 (PTI) 2018 has a lot in store for booklovers ? be it works by P Chidambaram, Omar Abdullah and Sheila Dikshit; biographies of Gauri Lankesh and Mohan Bhagwat; collected works of Manmohan Singh; V S Naipauls essays on India or novels by Tabish Khair and K R Meera.Autobiographies and biographies, however, seem to be the flavour of the season with scores of these being lined up for publishing.While Rupa will publish memoirs by Montek Singh Ahluwalia besides biographies of Priyanka Chopra (Aseem Chhabra), Danny Denzongpa (by Priyanka Pereira) and Mohan Bhagwat (by Kingshuk Nag), Bloomsbury will bring out autobiographies of Sheila Dikshit and Yaswant Sinha besides a biography of Chandrababu Naidu (by Tejaswini Pagadala).Among the other biographies are those of Syama Prasad Mookerjee by Tathagata Roy and Mahendra Singh Dhoni by Bharat Sundaresan (both Penguin); Indira Gandhi, Gauri Lankesh, S D Burman, Ilayaraja and Sri Sri Ravi Shankar (all Westland); and Sanjay Dutt (Juggernaut).HarperCollins India will publish a memoir of French President Emmanuel Macron, besides biographies of Karunanidhi and Zakir Hussain.”We open our account for 2018 with Sheila Dikshits innovative and well-researched pictorial book on Delhis evolution as a city,” says Bhaskar Roy, CEO of Palimpsest Publishers.Hemali Sodhi, senior vice president (marketing) and publisher (childrens) at Penguin Random House India, says the publishing house has a fabulous line up of books this year.It will come out with books like “Small Acts of Freedom” by Gurmehar Kaur; “The Book of Limericks” by Bibek Debroy; “Pakistans Nuclear Bomb: A Story of Defiance, Deterrence and Deviance” by Hassan Abbas; Pooja Bhatts “Intoxicated! My Battle With the Bottle”; “Across the Universe: The Beatles in India” by Ajoy Bose; “Seven Decades of Independent India” by Vinod Rai and Amitendu Palit; “Happiness” by the Dalai Lama; and “Working With Difficult Emotions” by the Karmapa.advertisementHarperCollins also has an elaborate list.Some of its non-fiction titles include: “Reimagining Pakistan: Transforming a Dysfunctional Nuclear State” by Husain Haqqani; Devdutt Pattnaiks “The Book of Numbers: An Indian Perspective”, Arun Shouries “Anita Gets Bail: More On Courts And Their Judgments”; “The McMahon Line: 100 Years of the Sino-Indian Boundary Dispute” by J J Singh; and Sitaram Yechurys “The Idea of India: Past, Present And Future.”Its fiction list has Shweta Bachchans debut novel “Paradise Towers”, “Dont Tell The Governor” by Ravi Subramanian; Nikita Singhs “Letters to My Ex”; and “How I Became A Farmers Wife” by Yashodhara Lal among other books.Alephs list includes Shashi Tharoors “Why I am a Hindu”; Omar Abdullahs part memoir, part history and part analysis “My Kashmir”; “Strangers No More: New Narratives from Indias Northeast” by Sanjoy Hazarika; “Indian Cultures as Heritage: Contemporary Pasts” by Romila Thapar; “Do We Not Bleed? Reflections of a 21st Century Pakistani” by Mehr Tarar; N Rams “Why India Needs a Free Press” and “Pilgrim Nation: Journeys of the Spirit” by Devdutt Pattanaik.Sister concern Rupa will publish “Villains of Bollywood by Annu Kapur”, “Why I Killed the Mahatma” by Koenraad Elst, “Reinforcing Accountability” by P Chidambaram, “My Ministerial Years” by Manish Tewari, Bimal Jalans “India 2025: A Great Leap in the Next Century”, “Holding to Account: Inside Indias Accountability Institutions” by Vinod Rai, and Kapil Sibals “Shades of Truth”.Oxfords list of big books for 2018 include “The Aadhar Effect” by N S Ramnath and Charles Assisi; “Economics for Political Change: The Collected Works of Manmohan Singh”; and “Three Times Unlucky” and “The Idea of India” by Salman Khurshid.Some of the upcoming titles from Westland Publications Ltd. are “Poonachi: The Story of a Black Goat” by Perumal Murugan; “Eating Wasps” by Anita Nair; a collection of poems in Urdu and English translation by Kaifi Azmi and Javed Akhtars father Jaan Nisar; and Maxwell Pereiras book on the tandoor murder of 1995.Juggernaut will publish books like Saurav Gangulys “A Century is Not Enough”, Benyamins “Jasmine Days”, “Half the Night Is Gone” by Amitabha Bagchi, “Pajamas are Forgiving” by Twinkle Khanna, and “Power” by Barkha Dutt.Chandrahas Choudhurys “Clouds: A Novel”, Boria Majumdars “Eleven Gods and a Billion Indians: The On and Off the Field Story of Cricket in India and Beyond”, “AAP & Down: An Insiders Story of Indias most Controversial Party” by Mayank Gandhi, and Keki Daruwallas “Letters to Mamma: A Novel” are some of the books to be published by Simon & Schuster.Pan Macmillan Indias titles include “India: Essays” by V S Naipaul, “Chinatown Days” by Rita Chowdhury, “Tropical Detective” by Zac OYeah and “Sports: Goals of Glory” by Neel Sinha. In its international titles list are “The Best of Times, The Worst of Times” by Michael Burleigh, “Fall From Grace” by Danielle Steel, “The Wife Between Us” by Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen, and “Renegades” by Marissa Meyer. PTI ZMN SHDadvertisementlast_img read more

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We dream of winning the World Cup: Jhulan Goswami

first_imgIndian pacer Jhulan Goswami on Thursday said that Team India dreams of winning the World Cup.The veteran cricketer, who recently became the first bowler to take 200 wickets in women’s ODIs, is back in India after suffering from a heel injury that ruled her out of the T20 series against South Africa away.”Every team dreams of winning the World Cup. We also want to achieve that. But first we have ensure a top-four spot, and only then take it forward from there,” Jhulan told IANS.ALSO WATCHThe next big assignment for the women’s team is World T20.”We play mostly T20Is from here on and in the South Africa series handed debuts to four youngsters. All our energy is spent now preparing for the World Cup and we really want to do well there,” the 35-year-old said.Antigua & Barbuda, Guyana, and St Lucia will host the Women’s World T20 from November 9 to 24 later this year.This will be the first instance of the Women’s World T20 being played as a standalone event, after the previous six editions were organised alongside the men’s World T20.India have never laid their hands on the 50-over or T20 World Cup. Last year, they reached the final of the 50-over tournament, but lost to England by nine runs in a heart wrenching fashion.”We are not looking to avenge our final defeat of last year,” Jhulan said.”That was a different format. This will be a fresh start for us and we are upbeat. We want to prepare in the best possible manner,” she added.advertisementIndia won the ODI series 2-1, their first ODI series triumph in South Africa, and in the five-match T20 series took a 1-0 lead riding skipper Mithali Raj’s unbeaten 54.”We are happy with the way we performed in the ODIs and I am sure we will do well in the T20s also,” said Jhulan who took five wickets in two games.On her injury, she said she will leave for rehabilitation at the National Cricket Academy (NCA) in Bengaluru, much like World Cup winning Bengal U-19 pacer Ishan Porel, next week.”I am not sure of the date but sometime next week I will leave for NCA. Let’s see how it goes there.”India’s next international assignment is against Australia, with the first of three ICC Women’s Championship matches beginning on March 12.It is a busy calendar for India as they will also host Australia and England in a T20I tri-series in March, followed by three ODIs against England at home.(With IANS inputs)last_img read more

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Ravichandran Ashwin is a role model for youngsters: Syed Kirmani

first_imgFormer India wicketkeeper Syed Kirmani on Sunday praised star off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin for his achievements and dedication to the game and said he is a role model for todays youngsters.”I have no words to express the achievements which Ravichandran Ashwin has done. My heartiest congratulations to the would-be legend in the making,” Kirmani said at a function here to present the Icon of Chennai award to Ashwin.WATCHThe former India keeper also said Ashwin is the pride of Tamil Nadu and India and was also a role model for the present day youngsters.”Ashwin is the pride of Tamil Nadu and the country. He is a great role model to the youngsters of today, the millennials of today. He is such a gentleman cricketer, among all the other gentleman cricketers, he excels. I deem it an honour to honour Ashwin,” Kirmani added.Ashwin has been a mainstay of the Test team even though he is out of the limited-overs side since the Champions Trophy.During the Sri Lanka series last year, he became the fastest to reach 300 Test wickets, taking just 54 matches to get there. The record was earlier held by Australian pace bowling great Dennis Lillee who had reached the milestone in 56 Tests.Ashwin, who made his debut for India in November 2011, has been India’s main strike bowler in Test cricket over the last three years. The Tamil Nadu off-spinner has not been a regular in India’s limited-overs squads but he Virat Kohli’s go-to-man in Test cricket.advertisementAfter having little to do in seaming conditions during the Kolkata Test, Ashwin came to his own in Nagpur where India dominated Sri Lanka on all four days. He first took four wickets in the first innings and then ran through the lower order as the visitors hurtled towards a massive defeat.Ashwin’s career graph spiked after an indifferent 2014 where he picked only 10 wickets in 2014.For two successive years in 2015 and 2016, Ashwin finished as the top wicket-taker in Test cricket. He snared 62 wickets in nine Tests in 2015 and pocketed another 72 from 12 Tests the following year.So far, he has 311 wickets from 57 Test matches at an average of 25.57 with career-best figures of 7/59. He has 26 five-wicket hauls and seven 10-wicket hauls in whites.Kirmani also hailed the Tamil Nadu cricketer for dedicating himself in all aspects of the game and in academics too. On his part, Ashwin said he was glad to receive the honour from Rotary District 3232.(With inputs from PTI)last_img read more

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Deepak Lather: Commonwealth Games 2018 Bronze-medalist is used to breaking records

first_imgDeepak Lather should be proud of his bronze medal in his debut Commonwealth Games.On Friday, he became the youngest Indian weightlifter to claim a Commonwealth Games medal.The 18-year-old lifted a total of 295kg (136kg+159kg) to finish third after his nearest rival, Vaipava Ioane of Samoa, fouled his last two lifts to finish with a total of 292kg (125kg+167kg) in the men’s 69kg category.CWG 2018 DAY 2 BLOGThe youngster, competing in his maiden Commonwealth Games, holds the distinction of being the youngest to hold the national record as well.Ioane’s heroic bid to hold on to a bronze left Indian fans nervous and kept Lather on tenterhooks.”I was just sitting inside and hoping he would fail his attempt. I know it’s bad to wish ill for someone but I couldn’t help it,” Lather said breaking into laughter after the medal ceremony.”I was just hoping he would drop the bar, luckily he did. he had beaten me in the Commonwealth championships, I had got a bronze there after losing by just a kilogram to him. I don’t know why he went for 175kg in his final lift, maybe he wanted gold,” he added.CWG 2018 MEDALS TALLYHe held the 62kg category national record at the tender age of 15.”It was very tough today and I think I was lucky to get a medal. I will try to improve upon the mistakes I have made. There are some technical faults I need to improve,” he said referring to his clean and jerk technique.advertisementTrained at the Army Sports Institute as a diver before being pushed into weightlifting by the coaches there, Lather quipped, “the coaches told me diving is not for rigid bodies of Haryana. We are meant for tough stuff like wrestling, weightlifting””I actually did not like weightlifting when I started, but I am so happy today. It is just amazing,” he added.Congratulations to Deepak LATHER for winning Bronze medal in Men’s 69kg weightlifting @gc2018 pic.twitter.com/5Uu5rZ86DlIndia in Australia (@HCICanberra) April 6, 2018A bright smile on his face despite the trouble his exhausted knee was giving him, Lather acknowledged the tough competition he faced today.The gold medal was claimed by Welshman Gareth Evans, who completed a total of 299kg (136kg+163kg), while the silver went to Sri Lankas Indika Dissanayake with an effort of 297kg (137kg+160kg).”I have competed in the youth commonwealth games in 2015, that was better. This was very tough,” he quipped.Lather is expecting the competition to go a notch higher in the Asian Games scheduled in August-September this year.Commonwealth Games 2018: Weightlifter Deepak Lather bags BronzeAs for celebrating the current moment, Lather said he would hold that till the 2020 Olympics.”I have not spoken to my father for the last three months. Actually I don’t even keep a phone, I have realised it’s a distraction, can anyone lend me a phone to speak to him?” he asked during the media interaction.”I won’t celebrate right now, I will celebrate once I get an Olympic medal in 2020,” he signed off.Earlier, Mirabai Chanu (48kg) and Sanjita Chanu (53kg) won gold medals in the women’s competition and P Gururaja claimed a silver in the men’s 56kg category.The Indian weightlifters have so far claimed four medals in the event.(With PTI inputs)last_img read more

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5 Indians in boxing semis, assured of medals at debut CWG

first_img(Eds: Updating with more information) By Poonam Mehra Gold Coast, Apr 10 (PTI) Veteran Manoj Kumar (69kg) assured himself the second Commonwealth Games medal of his career as five Indian boxers entered the semifinals of the mega-event with contrasting victories in the quarterfinals here today. The debutant trio of Amit Panghal (49kg), Mohammed Hussamuddin (56kg), Naman Tanwar (91kg) and Satish kumar (+91kg) joined Manoj in the semifinals of the mega-event, where Indian boxers had won three silver and a bronze medal the last time around. Amit defeated Scotlands Aqeel Ahmed in a split 4-1 verdict. The 19-year-old Naman, on the other hand, hammered Samoas Frank Masoe 5-0 in his quarterfinal clash to move into the medal round. “I didnt expect Ahmed to be this good. He surprised me with his speed and my counter-attack wasnt working at all. The coaches then told me to go all out aggressive which is what got me the results that I wanted,” Amit told PTI after his bout. Chasing a third successive international gold, the 22-year-old from Haryana overcame a rusty start to turn the tables on his opponent. “This is definitely going to be the biggest medal of my career so far. There is no doubt about that,” said the world championships quarterfinalists. Amit had lost the opening round on a majority decision but came back strongly to clinch the bout and a spot in the semifinals in his maiden appearance at a multi-sport event. He had won gold medals at the India Open and the Strandja Memorial Tournament in Bulgaria before coming into the Games.advertisement Naman is a former bronze-medallist from the youth world championships and defeated Asian silver-medallist Sumit Sangwan in the national trial to clinch a spot in the team. “I didnt have any prior knowledge of my opponent so I watched him for the first round and a half and then I got aggressive and stuck to my game plan,” he said. “My style of fighting is inspired by Melbourne (2006) Commonwealth Games gold medallist Akhil Kumar,” he added for good measure. The Delhi-boxer took to boxing to lose weight. He will be up against Australias Jason Whateley in his semifinal clash on April 13. In the evening session, Manoj and Hussamuddin took the ring against Zambias Everisto Mulenga and Australias Terry Nickolas respectively. Hussamuddin continued his rich vein of form to dismantle Mulenga 5-0 but Manoj had to toil hard against the crowd favourite who managed to clinch the final round from the Indian. “I feel confident. I had a quarterfinal loss in the last Commonwealth Games and now this is it. I have many, many goals, including this gold. My next target is the 2020 Olympics,” Manoj said of his campaign so far. Both Manoj and Hussamuddin will be up against English opponents in their semifinals bouts. While Manoj will face Pat McCormack, Hussamuddin will be up against Peter McGrail. Later Asian Games bronze-medallist Satish defeated Trinidad and Tobagos Nigel Paul in his quarterfinals bout to book the fifth mens medal for India. Earlier, M C Mary Kom (48kg) had assured herself of a medal at the event, winning her opening round clash. PTI PM ATK ATKlast_img read more

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Audi drives V6-powered RS 5 Coupe in India, prices start at Rs 1.1 crore

first_imgAudi, the German luxury car manufacturer, has launched the second generation Audi RS 5 Coupé in India. Priced at Rs 1,10,65,000, the all-new Audi RS 5 Coupe is now available at all Audi dealerships across India.The latest RS5 gets aggressive styling lines, sharp cues, with standard 19-inch wheels with 20-inches as options. On the interior, the RS5 gets a lot of performance-oriented design elements like sports seats, flat-bottomed steering wheel, Alcantara leather fittings, sports pedals, and Audi’s Virtual Cockpit instrumentation with RS5 badging.Under the bonnet, the RS5 will get an all-new 2.9-litre twin-turbo V6 petrol motor. The engine is a nowhere close to Audi’s last-gen 4.2-litre naturally aspirated V8. The new-gen engine may have a smaller displacement, but Audi has tweaked it to produce a maximum power output of 450bhp with maximum torque of 600Nm. Audi claims a 0-100kmph time of 3.9 secs for the new RS5 with a limited top speed of 250kmph. It still remains to be seen if Audi is planning to introduce the RS5 sports coupe with the optional RS Dynamic package which takes the top speed to 280kmph, and also includes various lightweight elements like a carbon-fibre roof, and a weight loss of 60kgs, and an optional sports exhaust system.last_img read more

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SPO-BAD-NATEKAR(Spb1)

first_imgBadminton legend Natekar hails current crop of Indian playersMumbai, May 13 (PTI) Hailing the consistently top notch show by the current lot of Indian shuttlers, badminton legend Nandu Natekar endorsed another great Prakash Padukones oft-held view that the racquet sport is going through the golden era in the country.”Very true, that its the golden era of the Indian badminton. Its so pleasing to see the names of the Indian girls in focus, and even the men, instead of Chinese, Thais and Malaysians (as was the case in the past).”Its a tremendous achievement and they deserve all the kudos,” said the first Indian to win a badminton title overseas in 1956.Natekar was speaking at the Legends Club felicitation function to herald his 85th birthday at the Cricket Club of India last evening.Comparing the strong points of the two top Indian women shuttlers, 2016 Olympic silver medalist P V Sindhu and 2012 Olympic bronze winner Saina Naiwal, he said, “Sindhu uses her height to her advantage. Saina is a great fighter.”Natekar, who made it to the quarter-finals of the then unofficial All-England Championship in 1954 in his only appearance in the prestigious tournament, described the countrys top male shuttler Kidambi Srikanth as “a class player”.He said badminton, over the years, has “progressed by leaps and bounds in speed, commitment and fitness levels of the players”.”I once watched Wong Peng Soon (former All England champion of Singapore and his idol) play a match here and then make five rounds of the ground and (I too) tried to do the same, but could not finish even one lap,” he said in a light-hearted manner.advertisementLooking back at his glittering career that started in 1951 and ended in 1965, the shuttle legend, who bagged the maximum number of votes in 1954 in a newspaper survey about the most popular sportsperson even edging out cricket icon Vinoo Mankad, who came second, said he was a self-taught man.”I was never coached. I learned watching others playing. You should keep on watching (others play),” remarked Natekar, who won six national mens singles titles, as many doubles titles and five mixed doubles crowns an unparallelled feat.Natekar was the recipient of the Arjuna Award in the year of its inception 1961 but strangely was never considered for the Padma awards and never got one too.”I never thought about it (not getting Padma award). I used to forget about my matches soon after they got over and concentrated on music,” declared the Sangli-born great, who now lives in Pune with son and ex-national tennis champion, Gaurav, and his family.Anil Pradhan, a former national mens doubles champion and coach of former top woman shuttler Aparna Popat, in his keynote address, acclaimed the classical style of play of not only Natekar but another former great late Suresh Goel and their on-court rivalry.”It was like a `jugalbandi (collaboration) what Natekar played was replicated a few shots later by Suresh. Both were very good in anticipating the rivals strokes,” said Pradhan.Pradhan also touched upon a statistical point that Maharashtra has not produced a national champion in mens singles other than Natekar and Rajeev Bagga (1991).”There were 13 national junior boys champions in this period but none went on to win the seniors title. In contrast, out of 12 junior girls champions, eight became national womens singles champions too,” noted Pradhan. PTI SSR RSY RSY RSY SRE SRE SRElast_img
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Don’t think Tendulkar could do what Kohli has done while chasing: Warne

first_imgRajasthan Royals mentor Shane Warne is enjoying the intensity and chaos of the Indian Premier League (IPL) again and having watched the cream of Indian cricket make a splash in the ongoing edition, Warne is convinced that India is the team to beat in world cricket today.”They have an all round team with all bases covered. Usually when India used to come to Australia in the past when I was playing, they would struggle on those fast, bouncy pitches. Their fast bowling was ok but not as good as their spin. Now we are seeing some of their fast bowlers are as good as any in the world. So on those fast and bouncy pitches, Virat (Kohli) does not have to concentrate on just spin, they also have some excellent fast bowlers. When things are not happening, they have got reverse swing, pace, they can use short ball and they have their spin and their batting.They are a proven side. I think India for the first time especially with no (Steve) Smith and (David) Warner will go in as favourites in a long time, if not ever against Australia, later in the year,” Warne tells India Today in an exclusive.ALSO READ: Sachin Tendulkar inspired me to become what I am today: Virat KohliLike a lot of other experts, Warne’s applause for Indian cricket stems from captain Kohli’s brilliance and go-getter attitude. Steve Waugh had called the 2001 Test series against India their final frontier and Kohli might want to say that about the upcoming Test series against England. Warne predicts, Kohli will come up a winner.advertisement”India face England first; perhaps the only place which Virat hasn’t yet nailed. And I think he will nail England this year. I think Virat will have an unbelievable series in England which will hold him in good stead in Australia also. He played beautifully in Australia in the last tour. His knock at Adelaide was nearly match winning. Jeez! He played well. I love to see Virat Kohli play,” he says effusive in praise of the Indian captain.”Virat and AB de Villiers are the two standout batsmen in all formats. I would throw Smith in there in Test cricket. Watching Virat play in England and then on the fast bouncy pitches in Australia is what I am looking forward to,” he added.ALSO READ: Sachin Tendulkar will share a bottle of champagne with Virat Kohli if…Warne’s battles with Sachin Tendulkar were a stuff of legend; some that he won and in quite a few of them where he finished second best. Does he think Kohli is in the Tendulkar league?”I think the way Virat plays and you look at his numbers and it’s uncanny how many times he has got hundreds in ODI cricket chasing totals down. I don’t think anyone, not even Sachin could do what Virat’s done. We know Sachin and Brian Lara were the two best players of all time in our generation. But Virat and AB de Villiers; it’s very difficult to separate those guys. Virat is as good as anyone that I have seen play the game. Wonderful, terrific player, I love his energy and passion. I am sure when he finishes in ten years or so he will be spoken about in the same breath as Sachin,” he remarked. Virat Kohli has been sensational form over the last two years (Reuters Photo)Virat Kohli has been sensational form over the last two years (Reuters Photo0The Indian captain has also been in the news with divided opinions on his call to use a month long county stint in June to practice for England Tests; a move that forced him to skip the one off Test match against Afghanistan. Warne”s fellow Australian champion Michael Clarke has said one should be playing every Test for the country. Warne has a counter argument in Kohli’s defence.ALSO READ: Virat Kohli’s decision to skip Afghanistan Test surprises Michael Clarke”It’s a one off Test against Afghanistan and you should always try to play a Test match as much as you can. But I think it’s a brave and courageous decision from Virat and shows how important the England series is for him and his team. He hasn’t nailed England before; Jimmy Anderson has had his number. So I don’t mind Virat missing this one off-Test match. If it was a series, the captain should be there. I am also very happy that Rahane is captaining that Test side. It’s fantastic for Jinx and I am happy and proud for him,” he said.advertisementWarne argues those critical of Virat are missing the point. “It actually shows how much he values Test cricket. You can talk about him not playing this one but he is valuing Test cricket by playing first-class cricket in those conditions before the England series which says a lot. I love the bravery and courage he has to play county cricket to prepare for the England series. I think that shows how important it is for him and it’s a great decision from him,” he opined.last_img read more

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Amit Shah meets sports legends Balbir Sr and Milkha Singh

first_imgChandigarh, Jun 7 (PTI) BJP chief Amit Shah, who was in the city today as part of his party’s ‘sampark Se samarthan’ (contact for support) initiative, met sports legends Balbir Singh Senior and Milkha Singh, who appreciated the steps Narendra Modi government is taking for the betterment of sports in this country. After a meeting with SAD leaders at the residence of former chief minister Parkash Singh Badal earlier in the day, Shah paid a visit to the Punjab BJP party office, paid obeisance at a local Gurudwara and visited the residences of the two legends. Before going to 85-year-old ‘Flying Sikh’ Milkha Singh’s residence in Sector 8 here in the evening, Shah visited 94-year-old hockey legend Balbir Singh Senior’s residence in Sector 36 here. At both places, Shah underlined that sports was a focus area of the Modi government. Creating more and better sports infrastructure, building stadia and giving all facilities which the sports-persons need was high on the government’s agenda, he told them, both legends later said. Shah also briefly touched upon the achievements during four years rule of the NDA government. Speaking to reporters after the meeting, Balbir Singh Senior said he had told Shah that sports budget should be increased and more infrastructure created. Balbir Singh Senior said he expressed happiness before Shah that days of glory of Indian hockey were again returning. A triple Olympic gold medallist, Balbir Singh Senior, told Shah that this year marked the 70th anniversary of the event when tricolour was hoisted for the first time on August 12 in 1948 in London’s Wembley stadium after India defeated England to win the Olympic gold in men’s hockey. A win in which Balbir Senior played a key role.advertisement The hockey legend told the BJP leader that government should put this event in its calendar of events and hold functions each year to celebrate it. “If government takes keen interest like this, our sports will touch new heights. Earlier, it used to be about wars, but now fight between the nations is on the sports field. We should create even better facilities for our children in schools and colleges,” Balbir Singh Senior said. I keep saying that before I die, if India wins the World Cup, I can die in peace, the veteran hockey player said adding he had given some suggestions to Shah on how to take sports to new glory in this country. Balbir Senior’s family members were also present, including grandson Kabir and daughter Sushbir. Shah who was at his residence for nearly 40 minutes, also watched a short film pertaining to the life and achievements of the hockey legend. Later, Shah went to meet Milkha Singh, the legendary athlete. After the meeting, Milkha Singh told reporters that he had told the BJP leader that Modi government was doing a good job in uplifting the sports, which was evident by better results at various national and international events. He said the main purpose of Shah’s visit was to apprise about the achievements of his government. “I want to say that ever since India has attained freedom, I have seen every Prime Minister and President, but one thing I want to say is that about Narendra Modi all Indians are so proud and even Indians living abroad have great respect and praise for him. Wherever he (Modi) goes, he extends a hand of friendship,” Milkha Singh said. Milkha Singh said he told Shah that he was happy that “my (Milkha’s) suggestion of making Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore, a sportsperson, as sports minister, was accepted by the government”. During our meeting, I also suggested that more work should be done to uplift and better lives of the poor in this country, he said. PTI SUN VSD ADSADSlast_img read more

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Ex-cleaner, ex-electrician to face off when Portugal take on Morocco

first_imgWhen Morocco play Portugal in their World Cup Group B encounter on Wednesday, a former cleaner and a ex-hotel electrician will occupy the two technical areas.Morocco coach Herve Renard and his Portugal counterpart Fernando Santos have taken something of a back route into coaching before enjoying huge success, albeit away from the bright lights of the big European leagues.Renard, whose side lost their opening match 1-0 to Iran, experienced the bitter side of football before landing his first senior role as coach of Zambia 10 years ago.FIFA WORLD CUP 2018 FULL COVERAGEAt the age of 15, he had a trial at Cannes, giving him hope of becoming a top-level professional before reality set in.”As soon as I was confronted by top players, I realised that I was not that good,” he said.After ending up as what he described as an “average third tier player”, Renard set up a cleaning business which involved collecting rubbish in the middle of the night.”I often remember those years when I got up at three in the morning to go and clean buildings,” he said. “It helps keep all this in perspective.”2018 FIFA WORLD CUP: DAY 4 LIVERefusing to give up entirely on football, he began coaching amateur sides and got a breakthrough when globe-trotting compatriot Claude Le Roy spotted Renard and invited him to become his assistant. He has not looked back since. Always sporting a “lucky” white shirt, Renard led Zambia to their first-ever African Nations Cup title in 2012 and repeated the feat with Ivory Coast three years later before taking Morocco to their first World Cup for 20 years.advertisementSantos, meanwhile, told Reuters in an interview last year that he owed his career to a chance acquaintance at a seaside hotel.In the latter years of his solid but unremarkable playing career, Santos, a qualified electrical engineer, began working in a hotel as chief technician and eventually took on the role full-time.He had no intention of continuing in football until his employer, who was also president of second-tier Estoril, invited Santos to coach the team on an interim basis.”Instead of six months, I stayed for six years and we went up to the first division,” he said.By the time he was sacked, he had his foot in the door and went on to coach all three of Portugal’s major clubs Benfica, Sporting and Porto – before taking Greece to the last World Cup.The highlight, however, came when he led Portugal to their first-ever major title at Euro 2016.Like Renard, he said that his humble beginnings has enabled him to keep things in perspective.That mindset is unlikely to change as Portugal seek their first win in Russia after they were held to a 3-3 draw by Spain in their opening match, hailed as one of the best in the competition’s 88-year history.”I never felt this pressure of someone whose only source of income is football,” he said. “Pressure is for cookers. I’m too old to worry about that.” DIRECTOR WHO SAVED MESSI’S PENALTYGoalkeeper Hannes Halldorsson was a zombie movie director before he started playing football for Iceland. And, it was his experience behind the camera that helped him outwit Argentina’s Lionel Messi on Saturday.Awarded a penalty with the help of VAR, Messi stepped up to take it and it was expected that the Argentina captain will score and put his team ahead. But, the goalkeeper had other plans. Messi unleashed a shot towards the goalkeeper’s right but it was weak and at a saveable height and Halldorsson guessed it right and denied the best player in the world perhaps to add another feather to Iceland’s cap.The tiny nation, which is playing its first World Cup ever, then went on to hold onto the 1-1 scoreline and pull off a major upset in the Group D game. Halldorsson is not the only one in the Icelandic unit to have a day job apart from football.Defender Birkir Mar Saevarsson works in a salt-packing factor back home and actually had to take permission from work to play at the World Cup in Russia.(With inputs from Reuters)last_img read more

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World Cup 2018: Neymar, Musa, Shaqiri score and Costa Rica bow out

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Kerala Blasters FC to play pre-season tournament vs La Liga club Girona FC

first_imgFootball fans in India will get to see international clubs playing as La Liga side Girona FC have announced that they will play two matches in Kochi in July.The development could provide an impetus to India’s quest to become one of the pre-season football destinations for clubs from across the world.Fresh from their stunning win over Real Madrid in the Spanish league, Girona FC will become only the second side from a top European league to visit India.Toyota Yaris La Liga World, will be held in Kochi with Indian Super League club Kerala Blasters FC, A-League’s Melbourne City FC and Girona FC locking horns in a three-way tournament. The three sides will play their matches at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium from July 24.One of ISL’s biggest clubs, Kerala Blasters FC, will look to kick start their pre-season playing these top foreign clubs at home.Australian club Melbourne City FC, managed by Warren Joyce, will come in after a third-placed finish in the hotly contested A-League, the best finish by the club in their history.3 continents… 3 countries… 3 clubs…1 trophy! @GironaFC @KeralaBlasters @MelbourneCityToyota Yaris LaLigaWorld is coming to India this July- stay tuned! #LaLigaWorld pic.twitter.com/EwC29zmoKKLaLiga (@LaLigaEN) June 26, 2018India, here we come!We’re heading to the subcontinent to take on @LaLiga’s @GironaFC and @IndSuperLeague’s @KeralaBlasters in July!Details https://t.co/b3DF6nqkkw pic.twitter.com/0XdRZelmNUMelbourne City FC (@MelbourneCity) June 26, 2018Girona FC will be the first LaLiga team to play in IndiaThe matches will be played on July 27 and 28 in Kochi against the @KeralaBlasters of the @IndSuperLeague and the @MelbourneCity of the @ALeague.#LaLigaWorld @laligaEN #GironaFC #OrgullGironí pic.twitter.com/5zHcb1nNZladvertisementGirona FC (@GironaFC) June 26, 2018Girona FC, who finished 10th in La Liga, will look to add Spanish flavour on their maiden trip to India. After joining the top-flight last season, Girona FC made a strong statement by beating defending champions Real Madrid.La Liga ambassador and former Spain international Fernando Morientes, who unveiled the tournament trophy, said, “It gives me immense pleasure to be a part of such a historic moment. Pre-season tournaments are the best preparatory ground for a club to prepare for the season ahead.”I remember how playing pre-season friendlies helped me identify the areas that I needed to work upon and be better prepared.” Delf Geli, Girona FC’s president, said, “For Girona FC it will be a special experience as it will be the first time our team has played away from Europe since its foundation 88 years ago.”We are looking forward to starting the tournament and showing the football that we’ve displayed in La Liga to the Indian football fans and the world.”Scott Munn, Melbourne City FC CEO said, “This is Melbourne City’s first ever visit to India, and the whole squad are incredibly excited about meeting the fans in Kochi and playing in front of such a passionate crowd.”High-quality opposition is an important part of our pre-season preparation, and we are delighted to be taking on both Kerala Blasters and our sister-club Girona FC in this brand new tournament.(With inputs from PTI)last_img read more

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India vs England: Rohit’s 100*, all-round Pandya script India’s series win

first_imgIndia rode on Rohit Sharma’s unbeaten 100 off 56 balls to beat England in the third and final Twenty20 International in Bristol on Sunday and win the series 2-1.This is India’s sixth consecutive and their first-ever T20I series win in England.Chasing a challenging 199 for a victory in the winners-take-all contest, Rohit stepped up to prove his worth as a big-match player.Rohit attacked England’s pacers from the word go as he got off the mark with a wristy flick for six off David Willey in the first over of India’s chase.However, Shikhar Dhawan’s poor run continued as he was dismissed in the third over by Willey. KL Rahul too perished for 19 off 10 balls but that did not stop Rohit’s assault.India vs England, 3rd T20I: Highlights He was ably supported by skipper Virat Kohli — the pair added 89 runs for third wicket.Kohli scored 43 off 29 balls before he was caught and bowled by Chris Jordan in the 15th over.Hardik Pandya, who was promoted ahead of Suresh Raina and MS Dhoni, took the pressure off Rohit with some quick runs. He scored the winning six to remain unbeaten on 33 off 14 balls.Rohit became the second batsman after Colin Munro to score three centuries in T20Is.The pair was involved in an unbroken 50-run stand off 23 balls as India crossed the line with eight deliveries to spare and seven wickets in hand.Clearly, it was Pandya’s day as the all-rounder earlier returned with career-best bowling figures (4/38) to restrict England 198/9 in 20 overs.advertisementPandya bowled 11 dot balls in the middle overs and accounted for the wickets of Alex Hales (30; 24b; 3×4; 2×6), skipper Eoin Morgan (6), comeback man Ben Stokes (14) and Jonny Bairstow (25; 14b, 2×4, 2×6) to not allow England to build on their solid start.Pandya was taken for 22 runs in his first over with England’s top-scorer Jason Roy (67; 31b; 4×4, 7×6) taking him to the cleaners.But the all-rounder came roaring back to first remove Morgan and Hales in the same over and then repeating the same in the 18th over to send Stokes and Bairstow back on his fourth and sixth delivery.Chinaman bowler Kuldeep Yadav was dropped raising a few eyebrows as he had taken five wickets in the first game.Veteran M.S. Dhoni was also at his best behind the stumps, taking five catches and effecting one brilliant run out in the last ball of England’s innings to get the wicket of Chris Jordan.Openers Jos Buttler (34; 21b; 7×4) and Roy gave England a flying start with poor fielding from the visitors helping in the cause too.In the first six overs of Powerplay, England scored 73/0 with both in-form batters smacking 10 fours and four sixes in the process.Deepak Chahar (1/43) — making his international debut in place of injured Bhuvneshwar Kumar — did not start off well, going for 13 runs with Buttler hitting him for three fours.In the next over, Buttler took Umesh Yadav (1/48) for two back-to-back fours to set the tone for his team before Roy turned on the heat.The 27-year old hit the first six of the match in the fourth over, a princely down the ground shot at long off before tonking Siddharth Kaul (2/35) for another maximum in the next over to show his intent.To make matters worse, Buttler was dropped by Yuzvendra Chahal (0/30) just after Powerplay although it was a difficult chance.In the next ball, Roy brought up his fifty in style, slapping Chahal for a six over long-on.Kaul finally ended the carnage by rattling the stumps as Buttler tried to swipe across the line. Roy and Buttler stitched together 94-run partnership for the first wicket.Chahal followed it up with an economical over, giving away just three runs. Chahar then got his first international scalp with a slower delivery that the dangerous Roy flicked to Dhoni behind the stumps.At the halfway stage, England were 111/2 with two new batsmen in captain Eoin Morgan and Alex Hales at the crease.Pandya then dented England’s surge as Morgan top-edged a back of a length delivery which Dhoni smothered, clattering the stumps in his follow through, and Hales was caught behind.Later, Stokes holed out to Virat Kohli at mid off and once again in the same over Bairstow, who was looking good after smacking two fours and sixes, nicked a half volley to the keeper.The rest of the batsmen could not take England past the 200-mark but still posted a more than par total.(With inputs from IANS)advertisementlast_img read more

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In India, Enhancing Ecosystems is Not Only Good for Nature—It’s Good for Business

first_imgThis piece originally appeared in the India Business Council for Sustainable Development quarterly magazine, Volume 8, Issue 2, in July 2011.In August of 2010, the Indian electricity company Satluj Jal Vidyut Nigam Ltd (SJVN) lost its source of power in Himachal Pradesh. Deforestation and river alterations upstream of the company’s dam had aggravated erosion in the area. Without the trees, heavy rains washed an unprecedented amount of sediment straight into the water, lowering dam reservoir capacity and power output. The resulting 22 days of closure for the facility left millions of people without power and cost the company upwards of $42 million, or INR. 198 Crore.SJVN’s experience illustrates how companies do not just impact ecosystems, but also depend on them. In fact, ecosystems provide businesses with numerous benefits, or “ecosystem services.” For instance, forests supply timber, purify water, regulate climate, prevent erosion, and yield genetic resources for medicine. River systems provide freshwater, power, and places for recreation. Coastal wetlands and mangroves filter waste, mitigate floods, and serve as nurseries for commercial fisheries.Many companies, however, are not fully aware of the benefits that ecosystem services provide to their bottom line. To overcome this challenge, the World Resources Institute (WRI) launched The Corporate Ecosystem Services Review (ESR) in 2008, along with the World Business Council for Sustainable Development and the Meridian Institute. The ESR is a five-step method designed to help managers systematically identify and address business risks and opportunities, resulting from changes in ecosystems and ecosystem services.Ecosystem change as a source of business risk and opportunityFor centuries, humanity has been degrading ecosystems, despite its dependence on them. The Millennium Ecosystem Assessment—the largest audit ever conducted of the condition and trends in the world’s ecosystems—found that ecosystems have declined more rapidly and extensively over the past 50 years than at any other comparable time in human history. In fact, 15 of the 24 ecosystem services evaluated have been degraded over the past half century. The Assessment projected further declines in the coming decades, particularly in light of population growth, economic expansion, and global climate change.This degradation is already creating new winners and losers in business. Companies may be caught unprepared by new regulations, scarcity of inputs, or reputational risks arising from being associated with ecosystem degradation. Others have seized opportunities to restore or protect ecosystem services in ways that improve business.A few examples of corporate responses to ecosystem-related challenges include the following.The City of Kolkata’s water utilities have designed cost-effective sewage treatment areas that use natural wetlands’ ability to purify water.In 2008, Autovias, a Brazilian highway management company, reduced road maintenance costs by diverting flood water to the Guaraní Aquifer, which increased groundwater reserves for nearby communities.In 1993, the Campbell Soup Company saved over $250,000 by encouraging tomato farmers in Mexico to use integrated pest management, where farmers enhance natural habitats in ways that reduce pest outbreaks. This practice also reduced pesticide application by 96%, reducing regional water pollution.Seizing opportunities through the Corporate Ecosystem Services ReviewThe ESR is designed to help companies respond more proactively to changes in ecosystem services. The ESR does this by helping managers develop strategies to manage business risks and opportunities, arising from their company’s dependence and impact on ecosystems. Thus, it is a tool not just for environmental assessment, but also for strategy development.In particular, the ESR helps companies identify ecosystem services that provide value to their bottom line. It also provides a framework for evaluating the business implications of trends in ecosystem services, and for developing strategies that minimize emerging risks and take advantage of potential opportunities.Since its launch in 2008, an estimated 300 companies have used the ESR. The ESR has provided value to businesses in industries that directly interact with ecosystems, such as agriculture, beverages, water services, forestry, electricity, oil, gas, mining, and tourism. But, it can also be applied to sectors, such as general retail, consulting, and financial services to the degree that their suppliers or customers interact directly with ecosystems.ESR in action: Mondi addresses water issuesMondi, Europe’s largest pulp and paper company, conducted an ESR at its tree plantations in South Africa. The ESR highlighted methods by which the company could increase its supply of fresh water, while improving the surrounding environment, strengthening its relationship with local communities, and reducing operational costs.For example, Mondi combined its interests in securing water supplies and tapping into the growing market for biomass fuel by clearing thirsty invasive vegetation from its plantations and using the biomass as feedstock for power generation. Clearing invasive species was important for watershed health, but costly. Mondi found that it could use the feedstock in its own mills or sell it to a biomass pellet manufacturer. By turning a cost into savings, Mondi has been able to expand routine invasive species clearing by 30% per year over the past two years.Ecosystem services in action: BC Hydro balances competing demands for ecosystem servicesBC Hydro, a government-owned hydroelectric utility in British Columbia, Canada, found itself at odds with its regulators and others who relied on the waterways of British Columbia for fishing, recreation, spiritual values, and drinking water. In response to growing tensions among users, BC Hydro initiated a water use planning programme to define suitable operating parameters that would balance environmental, social, and economic values.The water use planning process, which was voluntary in nature, included participants from environmental organizations, native tribes, the government, and nearby communities. BC Hydro developed a series of model-generated scenarios that illustrated how each user of the ecosystem would be affected as the company altered two variables—reservoir level and river flow rate. Participants reviewed each scenario, discussed the tradeoffs among ecosystem services, and used a value-based trade-off system to agree on a preferred option. That option became the operating plan for the hydroelectric facility.Integrating ecosystem service considerations into the water planning process proved to be a success for BC Hydro. Even though the number of operating constraints has increased, water use planning has yielded a number of benefits, including operational clarity and certainty, regulatory certainty, fewer lawsuits, and improved stakeholder relationships.Connecting ecosystem services to your business goalsGlobal degradation of ecosystems and the services they provide is altering the landscape in which business operates. The ESR is a proactive approach for companies to manage these emerging risks and opportunities. Furthermore, by helping companies make the connection between healthy ecosystems and the bottom line, the ESR facilitates sustainable environmental practices and more profitable and resilient businesses.For more information go to: www.wri.org/ecosystems/esrlast_img read more

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A Closer Look at Aqueduct’s New Global Water Stress Maps

first_imgThe World Resources Institute and the Coca-Cola Company recently announced a partnership that made industry-leading global water risk maps publicly available for the first time. Coca-Cola has donated maps and data that they developed to help them towards the goal of understanding and managing their exposure to water risks in their facilities around the world. Through Aqueduct’s online water risk mapping platform, this information has been made accessible to the public in an interactive, easy-to-use platform.Aqueduct’s new data from Coca-Cola takes the form of thirteen global maps that look at water stress, water reuse, and drought at a sub-basin level of geographic detail. This is a much more local perspective than existing water databases in the public domain, which tend to divide their maps at the country or basin level.The global maps now available on Aqueduct include:Baseline water stress: This map shows what proportion of the annual renewable supply of water in an area is being withdrawn for human use. This baseline map uses data from the year 2000 to show what proportion of the annual renewable supply of water is being consumed in a given area.Long term change in water stress: These maps project the changes in water stress in the future due to shifting climate, population, and economic development. These maps examine nine scenarios: three IPCC climate change scenarios (A1B, B1, and A2) and three time horizons for each climate change scenario (2025, 2050, and 2095).Baseline water reuse: This map, based on data from the year 2000, shows what fraction of water in a waterway has been withdrawn and discharged as wastewater upstream. This map highlights the places around the world where adequate water treatment is especially critical to maintaining good water quality.Socio-economic drought projections: These maps estimate the extent and severity of short (one year) and longer (three year) term socioeconomic drought conditions. Socioeconomic drought occurs when available freshwater supplies are not sufficient to support normal water use.More detailed information on the data and methodology used to generate all thirteen maps can be found hereThese maps will provide global context to the in-depth maps and analysis Aqueduct produces of individual economically important and water stressed river basins around the world. Combining global perspective with local detail makes Aqueduct a useful and applicable tool for a wide variety of audiences seeking to understand water risk. Additionally, the Aqueduct team is working with hydrological modeling partner ISciences to refresh and update these global maps in 2012.In addition to putting a valuable asset into the public domain for the first time, Coca-Cola’s partnership with Aqueduct provides a clear and compelling example of a private sector entity recognizing the importance of collaborating with other companies, NGOs, and governments to work towards truly sustainable water resource management.last_img read more

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New National Climate Assessment Shows America on Course for Unprecedented Warming

first_imgFor the United States:From 2000 to 2010, there were twice as many high temperature records broken as cold temperature records.Since 1895, the U.S. average temperature has increased about 1.5°F; more than 80 percent of the increase occurring since 1980.GloballyEach successive decade in the last 50 years has been the warmest on record.The decade of the 2000s was the warmest in the last 2,000 years.With “virtual certainty,” global temperatures will continue to increase through the end of this century.The warming of global temperatures can still be limited to 2°C, but doing so will require “rapid” and “significant” efforts to reduce carbon pollution. Without such efforts, temperature increases could exceed 12°F by the end of the century.This assessment adds to the growing number of reports showing that the United States is currently and will continue to experience unprecedented warming in the absence of climate action.“In his second term, President Obama has a chance to ensure his legacy as a leader on climate change,” said Steer. “Now is the time for the Administration to move forward with new standards on power plants and other actions to put America on course to a low-carbon future.”WRI’s experts will be taking a more comprehensive look at the new National Climate Assessment over the next few days. Look for our deeper analysis of the report—and its potential implications—sometime next week. This post was co-written with Forbes Tompkins, an intern with WRI’s Climate and Energy Program.A new federal report reveals alarming statistics on climate change. According to the 3rd National Climate Assessment, released in draft form today from the U.S. Global Change Research Program, the world could warm by more than 12°F by the end of the century if action isn’t taken to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.“The evidence is clear and mounting,” said WRI’s president, Andrew Steer, in response to the report. “The United States sits at the center of the climate crisis. Record heat is devastating crops, rivers are drying up, and storms are bearing down on our cities. Climate change is taking its toll on people and their economies, and will only become more intense without a strong and rapid response here in the United States and around the globe. It’s not too late to take action, but given lags in policy and geophysical processes, the window is closing.”This assessment comes on the heels of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) announcement earlier this week that 2012 was the hottest year on record for the contiguous United States. According to NOAA’s National Climate Data Center, the country saw 356 all-time temperature highs (and only four all-time lows) tied or broken and experienced 11 extreme weather events each causing more than $1 billion in damages.Here are a few of the report’s key findings:last_img read more

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The Post-2015 Development Agenda: Linking Sustainability and Poverty Eradication

first_imgThe High-Level Panel on the Post-2015 Development Agenda provided a welcome injection of energy and ambition into the future of development with its final report released last week. While the details will be parsed over the coming months, the report’s recommendations were at once bold and practical. The Panel sees that the promise of a world free of extreme poverty is within reach, and achieving this vision requires that sustainability and equity should be at the core of the global development agenda.While there have been many such calls to move the world onto a more sustainable and equitable development path, if the Panel’s proposals are to be truly acted upon, the results would be transformational.With that in mind, let’s look at how the report stacks up against the four “issues to watch” that we highlighted last week:1) Will sustainability be on the margins or at the center of the post-2015 agenda?This was a clear winner, as the Panel recognized that environmental sustainability and poverty eradication are inextricably linked. The report identified sustainable development as one of five essential “transformational shifts.” Unlike the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), which relegated the environment to just one of eight goals, the panel offered four goals–on energy, water, food, and natural resources–that directly connect human well-being with care for the planet.Of course, many decisions are still ahead, and true integration of these goals remains a challenge. Most importantly, we’ll need to see if even well-designed goals and targets can succeed in inspiring greater action at the national and local levels and in both the public and private spheres.2) Will specific, measurable goals and targets be put on the table?In a word, yes. The panel set out 12 “illustrative” goals supported by 54 targets. The goals incorporate many issues that were left out or insufficiently addressed in the MDGs, while managing to avoid becoming so sprawling that they are unachievable. Many of the targets are measurable, though the precise values must be defined and several remain vague (e.g., “safeguard ecosystems, species, and genetic diversity”). This proposal, however, lays out a strong foundation, opening the door for further debate on the specifics.A lingering question is how to most effectively address critical issues—such as inequality and resilience—that are cross-cutting in nature and have not been captured within stand-alone goals, but must feature strongly post-2015.3) Will the post-2015 goals ask developed countries to make concrete commitments?The biggest development challenges of our time—including climate change, food insecurity, and resource scarcity—are truly global in nature and require global solutions. In a world marked by growing economic and ecological interdependence, our collective security and prosperity is increasingly tied to how well we address these global challenges. The panel put forward an agenda that is universal in scope and entails commitments, responsibilities, and accountability from all—rich and poor—while being sensitive to the particular circumstances and needs of different countries. It is clear that this ambitious vision cannot be achieved without both developed and developing country actions.However, the recommendations do not offer many details beyond the framework. For instance, they do not sufficiently spell out how to respond to the problems of unsustainable production and consumption patterns, instead relying primarily on a target for social and environmental accounting.Another crucial test is goal 12 on creating a “global enabling environment.” The current goals do not go further than current international agreements in calling to stay below 2 degrees Celsius of temperature rise or 0.7 percent GNI in development assistance. In addition, there are outstanding questions about what action developed countries will take on issues like international trade, domestic subsidies, financial system reform, and technology transfer.4) What kind of global partnership will it imagine?The report takes needed steps toward redefining the “global partnership for development.” The Panel makes it clear that the global partnership for development should go beyond national government-level exchanges. The partnership should include local governments, business, civil society, the scientific community, and the public. New types of partnerships between these actors—including south-south collaboration—features prominently. These are all good concepts, but the path toward implementation remains uncertain.Global goals must be translated into sufficiently ambitious national commitments, and governments and their partners must be held to account for results. Developed countries will have to go beyond giving aid or removing trade barriers. Developing countries—particularly the major emerging economies—also have a role in creating financial stability, curbing illicit financial flows, and ensuring that economic growth does not undermine the health of the climate or ecosystems.Where Do We Go from Here?The High-Level Panel’s report provides a solid foundation for a development agenda that can truly benefit both people and the planet. But the road ahead has many potential speed bumps.The next major step will be for the Open Working Group on Sustainable Development Goals to go through its process of identifying goals, means of implementation, and mechanisms for monitoring and accountability. These two separate tracks need to come together if either is to be effective.Ultimately, the sustainable development agenda can only succeed if this voluntary framework changes how people make decisions, including national and local governments, investors, and businesses alike.The proposed agenda points in the right direction. Resolving the remaining issues and turning the agenda into action is critical to raise the quality of life for people around the world and ensure that people and the planet can thrive together.Sonya Suter, WRI’s special assistant to the managing director, contributed additional research and analysis for this piece.last_img read more

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With Clean Power Plan, US Shows It’s Serious About Climate Change

first_imgMore Work to Do at Federal, State and Local LevelsMany states and local governments have long been leaders in addressing their GHG emissions, and many find economic benefits by doing so. Thirty-three states have renewable portfolio standards and 24 states have energy efficiency targets. Additionally, growth in personal travel demand has slowed significantly in recent years, helping to reduce emissions from passenger vehicles. But state and local governments can do more, such as enforcing building codes and adopting other efficiency measures, continuing to implement smart growth programs, and building out more renewable energy. We also know more can be, and should be, done by the federal government. Even as President Barack Obama’s White House tenure moves to a close, the administration still has an opportunity to find cost effective opportunities for additional emission reductions, for example through emission standards for existing natural gas infrastructure and standards and voluntary programs for industry.” And as we showed back in May, action in these areas will be necessary for the United States to meet or exceed its 2025 reduction target. Over the next couple of days we will be analyzing how the final Clean Power Plan can help meet the U.S. climate target and what that means for taking actions in many of these other sectors. Later today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will finalize its Clean Power Plan which, for the first time ever, limits carbon dioxide emissions from the nation’s power plants. Addressing the single largest source of U.S. greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions is one of the most important near-term tools the United States can use to help reach its goal of reducing emissions 26-28 percent below 2005 levels by 2025. Together with all the other actions the administration has taken so far (illustrated in the infographic), the United States is showing the world it is serious about combatting climate change. In the past six months alone:EPA finalized carbon dioxide standards for new and existing power plants, which EPA projects will reduce power sector CO2 emissions by 32 percent below 2005 levels by 2030.The Department of Energy (DOE) made an agreement with industry and energy efficiency advocates to set new standards for commercial rooftop air-conditioners. This standard builds on the successful implementation of DOE’s appliance and equipment standard program and is poised to be the biggest energy saver in DOE’s history.EPA finalized rules that will reduce emissions of hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), potent greenhouse gases commonly used as refrigerants and for other industrial uses. In its latest actions, EPA is banning the use of the most potent HFCs for certain applications and has approved climate- friendly alternatives to use in their place. EPA estimates this will avoid heat-trapping emissions equivalent to 54 to 64 million metric tons of CO2in 2025.EPA and the National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) proposed a second round of fuel efficiency standards for medium- and heavy-duty trucks (estimated to save about 1 billion metric tons of GHG emissions), building on the first phase of standards that cover vehicle model years 2014-2018.EPA took the first steps toward addressing GHG emissions from airplanes, setting the stage for future development of a carbon dioxide emissions standard for commercial airplane engines.When you consider the measures the administration has already taken — like establishing GHG and fuel economy standards for passenger cars and trucks and proposing methane standards for new landfills — and is planning to take later this year — including proposed standards for new and modified natural gas infrastructure – it is clear that the United States is taking a comprehensive approach to reducing its GHG emissions.last_img read more

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