A new project has been announced to reduce the potential environmental impact of future mining by making exploration for deep-seafloor mineral deposits much more effective. ‘Project ULTRA’ has been funded by the Natural Environmental Research Council (NERC), and will be led by Professor Bramley Murton at the National Oceanography Centre (NOC).Deep-seafloor mineral deposits can provide vital new metals for emerging technologies, including those that will reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Many deposits were formed by hot springs on the seafloor and the vast majority of these now lie under a blanket of marine sediment. The big question facing geologists is whether these buried mineral deposits still contain valuable metals – have the minerals dissolved since they formed thousands of years ago beneath the Earth’s crust, or become even more concentrated?‘Project ULTRA’ will address these questions using a robotic drilling rig to drill the deposits – this will also generate the first three dimensional image of the deposits, using scientific instruments on the surrounding seafloor to listen to vibrations from the drill as it bores through the seafloor. The boreholes will then be sealed and returned to a year later, when fluids will be tapped-off from the plugs to test for reactions deep inside the deposit, NOC explained.The rock core taken by the drill, and these fluid samples, will reveal the composition and structure of these types of mineral deposit, their sub-seafloor fluid pathways, alteration of the host rock, and the preservation processes of their ore minerals.By using this information to identify where the most valuable metals are located in the deposit, Project ULTRA will help ensure any future exploitation would be able to minimize the disturbance to the seafloor and its surrounding environment.This project forms part of the NOC’s ongoing research into seafloor resources and is a collaboration with the British Geological Survey (BGS), the Universities of Southampton, Cardiff and Leeds, Memorial University in Canada, as well as Oxford Museum, GEOMAR, Nautilus Minerals, VNIIOkeangeologia from Russia, and SMD.
(Letter to the Sports Editor)Please allow me space in your newspaper to respond to an article in the Guyana Chronicle Edition of 12th October, 2017, under the headline “BCB President says Election was free, fair and transparent” written by Rajiv Bisnauth. It was simply unbelievable that someone who has spent over 30 years as an educator would allow his character to be stained with the most rigged election ever held in Guyana’s sporting arena and then described it as free, fair and transparent. The Berbice Cricket Board Election on Sunday 8th October, 2017, would go down in history as the most rigged, untransparent and abuse of power to ever take place in the history of sports in Guyana.The “Selected” President pleaded for a chance for cricket to move forward and for Court cases to be shelved. One is left to wonder why he didn’t ask the same of his current Vice President and Treasurer who tied up the Anil Beharry Administration for two full years with a Court Injunction. Beharry won by a clear majority and yet was denied the opportunity to lead. The four votes by Rose Hall Town and Young Warriors would not have affected Beharry’s victory, but Somwaru didn’t have the courage to beg his now close friends to give Berbice Cricket a chance.The entire Berbice Cricketing public is very upset over the recent election which was clearly rigged and corrupted. The objective was not for the development of Berbice Cricket, but rather to protect at all costs the current leadership of the Guyana Cricket Board.For the sake of Berbice Cricket fans, can the Berbice Cricket Board President explain the following:a) Why was a Five Star Hotel chosen for the meeting? Was it because it was private property and access to the Election Hall could be prevented. b) Godwyn Allicock (is) one of the persons responsible for the Injunction against the Berbice Cricket Board for two years. Is it true that you authorised him to serve as a “bouncer” at the entrance of the elevator to the Hall and to turn away people who were not your supporters.The same Allicock later turned up as a delegate of Port Mourant, a candidate on your slate and later as your “selected” treasurer.c) Why was your rival for the Presidency denied access to the Election Hall? Is it true that was because he was not from a voting club? Can you explain to the public which club you were representing? d) Why was the two West Indies Cricket Directors, a former Guyana Cricket Board President, a University of Guyana Professor who has no linkage to cricket, allowed in the Hall.e) Why was Leslie Solomon and Raymond Mohamed allowed to pretend to be Mt. Sinai delegates when they have no connections to the Club. This resulted in the elected officials of the club being stopped from voting as mandated by the Club’s membership.f) Why was the Rose Hall Estate Community Centre mandated delegates refused permission to vote, based on a faked letterhead submitted by one of your closest advisors.The members of the Club had met and voted for their delegates and even decided who to support for the Presidency. Why then was the Club denied their voting rights? Is it because you knew that they were not supporting you.g) Why were Guymine, Mental Hospital and Kildonan stopped from voting when they had proper documents with their memberships? They could not have paid any membership fees to the Berbice Cricket Board because the High Court had ruled that your executives were illegal. The elections of the three clubs were widely published in the national media.h) Eighteen delegates allegedly signed a document supporting Dru Bahadur for the post of Returning Officer.Since only twelve delegates were supporting you, who were the other six.One Police delegate has already stated that he did not sign any letter to support Dru Bahadur but rather to indicate his presence at the meeting. Did the five other signatures included the fake delegates from Rose Hall Estate, Canje and Mt. Sinai.i) Do twelve out of 34 delegates form a quorum for an election?j) Why was nomination for the Presidency closed in less than five seconds? Why (was) the President of the Upper Corentyne Cricket Association prevented from nominating Hilbert Foster? Did you not trust your own 12 delegates?k) Who paid membership fees for Blairmont, Upper Corentyne, Chesney, Mt. Sinai and Police? Delegates at the meeting openly stated that no fees were paid. Even if it was paid by fake members, who received it on behalf of an illegal Cricket Board?Finally, Mr. Somwaru owes the cricketing public of Berbice an explanation on who paid for the rental of the Five Star Hotel, meals and the bar. The Berbice Cricket Board transported a whole Under-13 cricket team in a car, provide Kool Aid as refreshments for our youths, but somehow found funds for an International Hotel. You complained in the media that sponsorship was hard to obtain, but funds suddenly appeared to host the most rigged election. The business sector should not support this illegal body who stole the voting rights of 20 delegates (8 clubs and the Upper Corentyne Cricket Association).Yours in Sports,Berbice Cricket Fan
Guyana-Venezuela border controversyThe United Nations Secretary General António Guterres’s decision on the Guyana-Venezuela border controversy could take as much as two years to be handed down if needs be, Vice President and Foreign Affairs Minister Carl Greenidge said on Wednesday.Providing an update on the matter, the Minister said that nothing new has happened since the Good Offices Process ended on December 31, 2017 and a commitment was made to clearly outline the way forward by the Secretary General.The Secretary General undertook to make a decision after a process which ended on December 31. “It is possible of course that he could take two years to answer…We are still waiting on the Secretary General to carry out his responsibilities,” Greenidge told Guyana Times on Wednesday.However, the Minister said given the circumstances by which he was invited to carry out his mandate under the 1966 Agreement, Guterres was fully aware of theForeign Affairs Minister Carl Greenidgeurgency of this matter.“And the fact that when the Guyana Government called on him to intervene, it wasn’t only because Venezuelan troops were on our borders, but because the continuation of this controversy caused by Venezuela claiming that the 1899 Treaty was null and void was having an effect on Guyana,” he added.“The Secretary General would know that during personal discussions with his personal representative, we made it very clear that our main concern was to embark on the process identified under the Geneva Agreement, but one that required an urgent resolution…And I don’t think we have to beat him over the head every week to tell him that,” Greenidge continued.Director General of the Foreign Affairs Ministry, Ambassador Audrey Jardine-Waddell had told sections of the media that after the Personal Representative to the Secretary General, Dag Halvor Nylander submitted his report on enhanced mediation efforts, the UN Head would decide the next step.“December 31 wasn’t the date of the decision. December 31 was when the process ended….Having received the report from his personal representative, the Secretary General will now make his decision and inform us of the decision,” Jardine-Waddell was quoted as saying.There have been reports that Secretary General Guterres could inform the two countries of his decision before the end of March 2018.“He didn’t have to inform us on December 31st; that was the date when the process ended,” Waddell reiterated.Former UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon had given an undertaking that 2017 would have been the last year of mediation to end the border controversy. If that process failed, the controversy would be referred to the International Court of Justice (ICJ), the principal judicial organ of the UN.Guyana maintains that the 1899 Arbitral Tribunal Award that settled the boundary issue between Guyana and Venezuela was full and final. But Venezuela has, for several decades, registered its diplomatic and military objection to Guyana’s development of its natural resources onshore and offshore.Venezuela, with almost 40 times the population of Guyana and a territory that is several times bigger, purported to claim in 1968 the entire territorial sea of Guyana by means of the Leoni Decree, which has never been withdrawn.On the military front, Venezuela’s navy in October 2013 seized the Malaysian-owned seismic research vessel, <<