|Sunday, 18 March 2018|
The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 09-07-28
From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <www.ert.gr/>
 Program for Energy Efficient HousesNews
Last Updated on Tuesday, 28 July 2009 17:01
To promote energy conservation the Development Ministry has announced a 400 million euros program to make homes more energy efficient. The program will start on November, 1 and will include all buildings whose building permit was issued prior to July, 1979 provided that 50% of an apartment complex is for residential use. The cost of renovation work in buildings whose objective value is up to 1.500 per square meter will be subsidized from 305 to 50% while tax incentives will be announced for all other buildings.
The program which mounts to 400 million euros and covers 13 regions of Greece will be funded by ESPA 2007-2013 and will also mobilize resources totaling 1 billion euros in the construction field to enforce viable development.
Greece is the first EU member state to make use of structural funds revised regulations allowing such actions.
‚In the event of increased demand, there is possibility to rise the initial sum. On no occasion, however, can we go above the 4% ceiling of the European Regional Development Fund due to relevant provisions in EU regulation‚ said Development Minister Kostis Hatzidakis.
The program will last two years and will finance either directly or through tax incentives insulation projects, replacement of oil burner with an energy efficient one or gas system or a system using renewable energy sources. Installation of solar hot water heaters.
Mr. Hatzidakis said that materialization of the program would mean energy savings of up to 70% and all benefits from saving money on energy costs and greener lifestyle. The program is planned to start on November, 1, to allow a 3- month period to brief people and competent services.
News item: 25253
 Procedures for Vaccine Production Get Sped UpNews
Last Updated on Tuesday, 28 July 2009 13:10
The vaccination of as many people as possible before winter sets in is the goal of the European governments. Greece, Britain, France and Sweden will be the first countries in line to get the vaccine. In Britain, which is already morning the most deaths in Europe, will receive the first 132 million doses in the following month. However, what matters the most is the vaccine's safety.
Safety Is What Matters
Greece, Britain, France and Sweden will be the first countries in line to get the vaccine. The European Medicines Agency has sped up produces for the approval of the vaccine.
Because of the emergency, it has allowed pharmaceutical companies to distribute the vaccine without conducting clinical tests in large numbers of volunteers.
EU officials said that only after vaccinating millions of people will they be certain of the vaccine's safety.
However, they keep stressing that it is worth taking the risk.
In Britain, about 150 volunteers developed mild side-effects, including allergies and stomach disorders.
‚Save the Antiviral Drugs for the Young‚
In the meantime, Italian researchers said that were the present flu pandemic to be evolved in a similar way to the 1918 Spanish flu, then the antiviral drugs should not be wasted on the elderly. They should be saved for the young, instead.
They believe that administering antiviral drugs to the elderly will not significantly reduce the mortality rate by the H1N1 flu and will lead to increase resistant to therapies.
Foetuses Infected with H1N1 Flu
In Thailand, a baby was tested positive to the H1N1 flu as soon as it was born. It was infected with the virus while in his mother's womb.
His mother is in a critical condition.
Three similar cases have been recorded in the USA, as well.
Source: NET, ANA
News item: 25247
 USA & China Launch New TalksLast Updated on Tuesday, 28 July 2009 11:24
US President Barack Obama termed the ties between the USA and China as capable of shaping the 21st century, while addressing a two-day meeting between top US and Chinese officials. The US President stressed that relations between the two countries are as important as any bilateral relationship in the world, further calling for closer cooperation between the two sides. He then went on to urge China to respect the rights of religious and ethnic minorities and vowed that Washington will be at Beijing's side to tackle nonproliferation challenges.
Opening a new strategic dialogue between the USA and China, the US President called on Beijing to cooperate in a drive to tackle climate change in view of the December summit in Copenhagen.
Noting that the United States and China are the world's two largest energy-consuming countries, Obama pushed for more cooperation from the Chinese government to help reduce carbon emissions.
Shifting his attention to minorities, the US President argued, ‚All people should be free to speak their minds. That includes ethnic and religious minorities in China."
Source: Reuters, ANA/MPA
CNN: U.S. and China launch 'new dialogue'
News item: 25243
 EU Calls for a Solution to the FYROM Name RowLast Updated on Tuesday, 28 July 2009 09:27
Sweden's Foreign Minister Carl Blidt underlined the need for a solution to the FYROM name row, in his statements after the talks and EU-FYROM Stability Pact held in Brussels. After admitting that it is a major and quite complex matter, he stressed both sides are required to demonstrate real compromise to sort it out.
Blidt said that the name dispute is a burden to both sides, which should focus on figuring out what to do to solve it.
On his part, FYROM Foreign Minister Antonio Milososki underlined that FYROM's goal is to have the EU set a date for FYROM's accession talks within 2009, noting, at the same time, that Council proved that cooperation between the EU and FYROM is getting closer and closer.
The communiqu√© Blidt unveiled before Antonio Milososki read that activities and statements that could have a negative impact on good neighbourly relations should be avoided. Maintaining good neighbourly relations including a mutually accepted solution following UN-sponsored talks are of vital importance, concluded the communiqu√©.
Older news items: News item: 25240
 Jackson's Death Blamed on His DoctorNews
Michael Jackson's personal physician, Dr. Conrad Murray, administered a powerful drug that authorities believe killed the singer, a source with knowledge of the investigation confirmed to CNN on Monday.
Murray, a Texas-based cardiologist, allegedly gave Jackson the anesthetic propofol -- commonly known by the brand name Diprivan -- in the 24 hours before he died, the source said.
The doctor's attorneys in a statement Monday said they wouldn't comment on "rumors, innuendo or unnamed sources." In the past, they have said Murray never prescribed or administered anything that could have killed the pop star.
Murray was the doctor who was at Jackson's home when the pop star died on June 25.
Last week, Texas authorities searched Murray's Houston medical office and storage unit, looking for "evidence of the offense of manslaughter," according to court documents.
News item: 25239
 Dozens Haitians Missing in the AtlanticA vessel with about 200 migrants from Haiti capsized off the coast of the Caribbean islands of Turks and Caicos, confirmed the US Coast Guard, which is helping local authorities in the search and found operation. So far, rescue crews have rescued about 40 people, while another 20 managed to swim to the shore. Four bodies have been recovered, while dozens are still missing.
The Turks and Caicos Islands are a British Overseas Territory, an autonomous part of the United Kingdom, between Bahamas and Haiti. Haitians often travel through the islands in overcrowded boats, hoping to find work in the Bahamas or Florida.
Source: Reuters, ANA/MPA
BBC: Many missing as Haiti boat sinks
News item: 25238