(Globe and Mail, 26 March 2012) -- The new Canadian $50 bill unveiled Monday contains a few changes in addition to the state-of-the-art plastic material introduced as part of Canada’s ongoing currency overhaul. Gone from the new bill are images of human-rights causes, like the women’s liberation movement and the UN Declaration on Human Rights. Added is an image of an Arctic icebreaker, the Canadian Coast Guard research ship Amundsen. Those variations on the back of the bill are to be expected, says the Bank of Canada, because every new currency series carries a different theme. “The [new] theme is great Canadian accomplishments – in the country, in the world and in space,” said spokeswoman Phuong Anh Ho Huu. ... Changes to currency are suggested by the Bank of Canada, following a round of public consultation, and subject to the approval of Finance Minister Jim Flaherty. The front of the new $50 bill continues to carry the image of former prime minister William Lyon Mackenzie King as well as its familiar reddish hue.
Posted 26 March 2012; 10:26:49 PM. Permalink
(YLE News, 26 March 2012) -- Finland's environment minister Ville Niinistö says there's room for more mines in Lapland, in the country's Arctic, if mining companies are willing to carry social responsibility. Ville Niinistö notes that there are no major differences in views concerning mining operations within the coalition government. Those that do exist have narrowed over the past year. "During the past year, the Ministry of Employment and the Economy, and Economy Minister Häkämies, have had their eyes opened to the fact that mining cannot be promoted if environmental issues are not taken seriously from the start. There is room for more mines in Lapland, if mining companies are willing to carry their social responsibilities," Niinistö told Yle. Economy Minister Jyri Häkämies calculates the mining could create thousands of new jobs in Lapland over the next three years. It's estimated that over four billion euros will be invested in mining there. "There is no such thing as a green mine, but mines can be made to have a lesser impact on the environment. Environmental technology projects are important. They can provide Finnish companies with new export opportunities," Ville Niinistö pointed out. However, the Environment Minister also wants to ensure that the economic benefits of mining actually remain in the country. "Mining laws are still liberal. If the degree of processing remains low, the benefits flow abroad."
Posted 26 March 2012; 10:15:08 PM. Permalink
(IceNews, 23 March 2012) -- A Danish prison inspector has spoken out about the practice of sending Greenlandic inmates to Danish gaols, claiming it contravenes their human rights to maintain close ties with their families. Hans Jørgen Elbo argues that Denmark would probably lose a case in the European Court of Human Rights if the Greenlanders serving sentences at Herstedvester Prison made a stand. As Greenland currently has no permanent jails, around 20 inmates have been sent to Herstedvester. Prisoners have been housed in Denmark since 1952, and the construction of Greenland’s first prison is still to be completed after various setbacks since 2007. Elbo was publicly reprimanded for his comments by Annette Esdorf, deputy CEO of the prison service (Kriminalforsorgen), at a meeting last week. He is unrepentant, however, claiming no one has been able to prove that the practice does not violate the prisoners’ rights. Speaking to Politiken, Peter Scharff Smith of the human rights Institute for Menneskerettigheder, said he agrees with the inspector.
Posted 26 March 2012; 10:11:19 PM. Permalink