March 30, 2016

Top News Stories –

Europe’s largest floating solar farm to open –
The biggest floating solar farm in Europe is being constructed on a reservoir. More than 23,000 solar photovoltaic panels are being laid on the surface of the Queen Elizabeth II reservoir near Walton-on-Thames, Surrey. The farm, which will be the size of eight football pitches, is expected to generate 5.8 million kilowatt hours of electricity in a year. The energy will be used to part power a nearby water treatment works. Thames Water said construction of the solar farm, which is about eight miles (13 km) from Heathrow airport, will be completed by the end of March. The floating pontoon will be 57,500 sq m in size. [BBC]

Video of the Day –

The Largest Floating Solar Farm In Europe

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Other News Stories –

Armed conflicts and attacks
Business and economy
Disasters and accidents
Health and medicine
  • A new study by researchers at McGill University and the University of California, Los Angeles, finds that each additional month a woman has paid maternity leave is associated with decreased infant mortalityby more than 10 percent. Researchers noted that paid maternity leave reduces stress because of the guarantee of income and job security, increases the chances for breastfeeding and other infant care, and allows a mother to seek more medical attention for herself. (UPI) (PLOS Medicine)
  • The United States Food and Drug Administration announces it has relaxed its official requirements regarding the use of the abortion drug Mifeprex (RU-486). The current guidelines were based on 1990s medical evidence. Changes include reducing the number of physician visits required by abortion-seeking women, reducing drug dosage, and allowing women to take the drug for three weeks longer — now a total of 70 days. (UPI)
  • Air pollution in Mexico City
    • Mexico City, facing the capital’s worst air-quality crisis in over a decade, issues a temporary order that all cars remain idle one day a week. Today, authorities report a pollution index of 108 (bad) after low readings during Holy Week. Vehicles will also be forced from the roads one Saturday a month. The measure will begin next Tuesday, April 5, and run until Thursday, June 30, 2016. Starting July 1, improved technology will be in place at smog-check centers where all vehicles must be tested every six months. (AP via Fox News)
International relations
Law and crime
  • A Bangladesh Court issues an arrest warrant, the second one so far, for former Prime Minister Khaleda Zia and 27 opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party members over political violence, mostly petrol-bomb attacks, that occurred during anti-government protests last year that killed at least 120 people. (Al Jazeera)
  • EgyptAir Flight 181
    • A Larnaca, Cyprus, court orders that 59-year-old Seif Eddin Mustafa, who was arrested by Cypriot police yesterday, remain in local police custody for eight days to assist Cyprus’s own investigation. Mustafa faces charges of hijacking, illegal possession of explosives, kidnapping, and threats to commit violence. It’s unclear if Mustafa had any explosives; the bomb belt he wore was fake, and officials are waiting for testing results on unidentified liquids found among his possessions. (AP via The Daily Courier)
    • Egypt General Prosecutor Nabil Sadek formally requests Mustafa’s extradition from Cyprus. (Reuters)
Politics and elections

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