Veteran basketball official, Howard McCatty, has agreed with the Inter-Secondary Schools Sports Association’s (ISSA) competition’s director, George Forbes, that the referees are to blame for the incident which forced game one of the ISSA Southern Conference under-19 basketball final to be ruled null and void and ordered replayed.McCatty, a former basketball president and currently a referees’ trainer and technical commissioner, said the match officials erred by not ensuring that the teams were checked, even though others are sometimes assigned to fulfil this task.”They (referees) should have checked the identification cards before the game started. But, here in Kingston, we usually have someone checking it, and they (refs) thought it was checked by the table,” he explained.CHECKING ID’S”But I would put the blame on the referees because a technical commissioner should be at the table to check all IDs. In Northern (Conference), I check all IDs before the games starts,” he added.Calabar won game one of the series, only for Camperdown to launch a protest against their opponents for not having their IDs available for the game.However, ISSA investigations revealed that Calabar had no IDs. Camperdown did not have their full complement either and, as a result, a replay was ordered. Forbes blamed the match officials for not upholding the rules.”Our rules are quite simple, and that is you must have an ISSA-issued ID. The referees are the ones causing the problem. How do they know that a player has an ID? If I am the referee and I know you and I say you can play, that does not mean you satisfy the criteria,” Forbes said recently.McCatty admitted that sometimes schools have ID issues when they come to games, and insists that once it can be verified that a player is legitimate, they try to accommodate the schools as best as they can. However, he says next season, there will be no room for such leniency with the regulations.
The MSC Sola is the largest container ship in the world, and its docking in Durban was made possible by re-development at the harbour. A typical tug boat can be seen off the coast of Durban. Tugs are useful to port operators as they help direct the ships to their berthing posts. Containers being offloaded at one of the terminals at Durban. Containers handled at Durban represented 67,4% of the total number of containers handled at South African ports in the 2008/09 financial year. An aerial view of the port of Durban.(Images: TNPA Facebook page)MEDIA CONTACTS • Lunga Ngcobo GM: Corporate Affairs TNPA+27 11 351 90130RELATED ARTICLES• SA women marine pilots make history• Maritime cooperation for growth• SA maritime industry set to grow• SA harbour chief makes world historyValencia TalaneAfrica’s busiest and largest port, Durban, saw a lot of firsts on Thursday 5 July. The largest container ship ever to dock at a South African port, the MSC Sola, was ushered in by an all-female crew that included a marine pilot and, for the first time, four tug masters.The operation was originally scheduled to take place on Wednesday afternoon, upon Sola’s arrival, but was delayed because of what Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA) referred to as ‘safety considerations’ in a statement released on Thursday morning.Ladies in chargeBongiwe Mbambo (30) was the lady in charge of the massive exercise. She received her marine pilot open license in 2011, along with colleagues Precious Dube and Pinky Zungu, and thus the trio joined the only other two female marine pilots in South Africa.To assist with the exercise, four tugs were used to navigate the vessel, and these were all operated by female tug masters. This was the first time this number of tugs had ever been used, an indication of the sheer size of the ship.Mbambo was transported to the deck by helicopter, where she guided the captain to berth 105 at New Pier.Asked by Durban’s Mercury newspaper how she felt about making history, she said: “It is exciting, as a woman, to be given a chance to do this maiden voyage. I hope it encourages other women.”Developing the portThe whole operation would not have been possible prior to 2010, when a R2.9-billion (US$357 941) expansion project that was overseen by state-owned TNPA saw the port’s entrance channel widened and deepened to enable plus-size vessels such as the Sola through.The ship, which belongs to the Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC), was built in 2008 and measures over 300m in length and 45m in width, more than the length of three and a half rugby fields. She carries cargo with a gross tonnage of 131 771 and a slot capacity of 11 660 TEUs (the equivalent of a 20-foot container). Sola came in from the Far East via Port Louis in Mauritius.Having an open license means that Mbambo can navigate ships of any size and type into the port, the entrance channel of which is now 222m wide at its narrowest point.It also measures 19m in depth in the outer entrance, and rises to 16.5m draught in the inner channel.“The introduction of these vessels to our waters indicates the confidence shipping lines such as the MSC has in our ability to operate in an environment that is effective, safe and efficient,” said TNPA CEO Tau Morwe.““With the ever-increasing number of large vessels visiting our ports, we are ideally positioned as a leading trans-shipment point between the emerging markets of the eastern and western seaboards.”Morwe also mentioned that to ensure that the country remains competitive and well ahead of demand, the NPA needs to increase the port handling facility by more than 50% over the next seven years. By doing so, container capacity will increase from approximately 2.7-million TEUs annually to more than five-million TEUs.The role of ports in the regionThe Southern African region relies heavily on the healthy state of its ports because they play a big role in the economies of its countries, all the while providing transportation value for the landlocked countries of the Southern African Development Community.Approximately 95% of all trade to the region passes through its ports and those of East Africa, providing a vital link in the logistic chain that binds southern Africa together. If one port experiences any sort of delay or interruption, the effect is often felt across the entire region.At the recent Africa Ports and Harbour Show held in Johannesburg, Morwe asserted that regional port organisations need to get together as a bloc to boost development and cooperation. He also alluded to the fact that shipping companies are manufacturing bigger vessels, and the pressure was on to develop ports and harbours that can keep up with the trend.Transnet Port Terminals CEO Karl Socikwa, who attended the same function, had good news to share about his division’s plans for Durban going forward.“Durban’s Pier Two will take delivery of seven new tandem-lift ship-to-shore cranes,” said Socikwa. This is a continental first and allows for the simultaneous lifting of two 12-metre containers or four six-metre containers.The Maydon Wharf terminal, also in Durban, is scheduled for new container handling equipment such as mobile cranes.
Wait a second. Spring has barely sprung, and you’re saying we need to start thinking about energy audits already? What’s up with that?There are several reasons why now is a good time not only to focus on energy auditing and weatherization work — not only for your clients, but also for your own home. Weatherization professionals have some timeBecause spring is a time when few homeowners are thinking about heating bills and how to bring them down, it’s a good time to find energy-performance contractors who can do that weatherization work.Those energy-performance contractors who do general construction work may be gearing up for the summer building season, but for those limited to energy audits and weatherization, now is a good time. Alex is founder of BuildingGreen, Inc. and executive editor of Environmental Building News. In 2012 he founded the Resilient Design Institute. To keep up with Alex’s latest articles and musings, you can sign up for his Twitter feed. Great incentives for energy audits and weatherizationI don’t know about other states and utility territories, but in Vermont the statewide organization Efficiency Vermont and the Vermont Clean Energy Network (VECAN) are currently promoting weatherization through the Vermont Home Energy Challenge. Seventy-seven towns in Vermont are participating in this challenge, which will award $10,000 to the town with the highest level of participation.The goal of the Home Energy Challenge is to encourage homeowners in participating towns to carry out weatherization projects to lower their energy use. The target is getting 3% of homes to complete weatherization projects. In my town of Dummerston, for example, this will mean getting 24 homeowners to carry out weatherization. This is part of a long-term, state-wide goal to weatherize 25% of homes in the state, which will help us with the state energy plan of reducing the consumption of fossil fuels 90% by the year 2050.Before and after blower door testing is required as part of the Home Energy Challenge, with a target of at least a 10% improvement in airtightness through the weatherization.Seventy energy performance contractors statewide are participating in the Home Energy Challenge by discounting their costs of energy audits, and Efficiency Vermont has kicked in $100 per audit to further bring that cost down. Some towns have gone further in discounting the audit cost — in Dummerston, for example, an anonymous donor is kicking in an additional $100 per house (for up to 24 projects), which will bring the cost of an audit down to about $150, from the typical cost of $400 to $500. Airtightness is keyA huge part of weatherization is tightening up the house. To assess airtightness, a blower door is used. As described a few weeks ago, this is a fan that is installed in a door frame and depressurizes the house. A computer controller tells you how tight the house is by calculating how much air has to be forced through the fan to maintain a specific pressure difference — usually 50 pascals. RELATED ARTICLES Video Series: A Home-Energy AuditEssential Energy-Audit EquipmentBlower Door BasicsAn Introduction to Thermal ImagingEnergy Audits in New EnglandWhat’s Wrong with the Home-Energy Audit Industry?The Energy-Efficiency PyramidQ&A: Disappointing energy audit To work well, there has to be a significant temperature difference between the interior of the house and the outdoors. The minimum temperature difference (delta-T) is 20°F, but a higher delta-T is even better.In more northern climates, such as New England, even though it’s been getting up into the mid-70s during the days this week, it’s been dropping into the low-40s or 30s at night. So a thermographic analysis in the evening or early in the morning can still find plenty of delta-T for the assessment. Plenty of time to get the work done before winterStep one should be getting that energy audit to find out what a client’s house — or your own — needs. Find out if there exist incentives for energy audits or weatherization/energy upgrades in your area. (Assuming that such incentives do not exist, consider getting involved to encourage the adoption of such a program.) Even where incentives don’t exist, energy audits and weatherization is usually a good deal financially.Spending $400 to $500 on an energy audit, and several thousand dollars on follow-up weatherization and energy improvements, will generally be repaid in less than ten years through energy savings. But even if the financial savings (reductions in heating bills) don’t easily justify the investment, the dramatic improvement in comfort realized through such improvements often make such an expenditure worthwhile. Learning moreFor more on energy audits, weatherization, and other energy improvements and to find a specialized contractor doing such work, contact the Building Performance Institute. Another good source of information is is the advocacy organization, Efficiency First. If you’re lucky enough to live or work in Vermont, contact Efficiency Vermont to find out more about the Vermont Home Energy Challenge. Still cool enough for thermographic analysisPart of an energy audit may involve taking images of your house with a special infrared camera to identify areas of excessive heat loss. Infrared or thermographic cameras show temperature differences. Taking such images of your house walls when the house is warm indoors and fairly cold outside will show visually where heat is escaping from the house.
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