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PCC Ranked Number One in Survey of Healthcare Technology Vendors

first_imgPCC Ranked #1 in Survey of Healthcare Technology Vendors(Winooski, VT) Physicians Computer Company (PCC) has received the highest overall score earned by any company in any category in the 2005 rankings of healthcare information technology (HIT) vendors published by industry-leading research firm KLAS Enterprises (www.healthcomputing(link is external) .com). PCCs scores were almost 20 points higher than the average of other vendors.With an overall score of 96.98 (of 100), PCC ranked first in the Ambulatory Specialty Market Segment of the 2005 Best in KLAS Top 20 Report. For its software capabilities and support services, PCC scored 8.73 of a possible 9, the highest Performance Indicator result recorded in this years survey, and 98% of PCC clients interviewed called the company their best vendor.PCC should be a category leader, said Melissa Jumper, office manager at Hershey Pediatric Center in Hershey, PA, who participated in this years KLAS survey. I have never come across a program that is so user-friendly, and the support PCC gives us is just not out there anywhere else. They are worth every penny.They have really made it their business to understand how a pediatric office runs, said Carol Leichter, office manager at East Bay Pediatrics in Berkeley, CA. So they really understand what were talking about when we call them with a request. Out here weve been through earthquakes and big fires, but Ive never run into a problem with my PCC software that has caused my office to be down.Were obviously delighted, said Chip Hart, head of Pediatric Solutions at PCC. Its nice to get recognition like this. But we also know we can always get better as the needs of our customers evolve and we actually have quite a bit more in the pipeline to help us keep improving our software and our support, with our electronic medical record at the top of that list.KLAS applauds PCC, and their efforts to address the challenges of todays healthcare environment, said Barbara Comeau, Independent Research Director for KLAS. KLAS is always pleased when vendors perform well. It benefits the industry, and more importantly, it always benefits the providers.The KLAS rankings, published each year since 1996, are the only rankings of health information technology vendors that are based on the direct and extensive input of healthcare providers across North America. They take into account many aspects of a vendors performance, from software and support services to training, pricing, the timeliness of implementation, and myriad other issues.This is PCCs first year participating in the study.About PCC –Started in 1983, PCC specializes in helping pediatric offices concentrate on taking care of their patients. The company’s Guaranteed Support 24/7 policy sets them apart in the industry. PCC not only sells, installs, and supports its computer software and networks, it offers training and consulting on a wide variety of practice management topics.last_img read more

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Vermont unemployment rate falls again to 6.4 percent

first_imgStatewide Total – All Industries estimate is seasonally adjusted independently.Note: Beginning January 2009 Vermont is publishing a seasonally adjusted Total-All Industries estimate for the   Burlington – S. Burlington MSA.Current Employment Statistics Program (CES). Produced by the Vermont Department of Labor in cooperation with the U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics. Vermont Labor Force StatisticsSeasonally Adjusted TOTAL NONFARM290,550294,650293,600-4,100-3,050-1.4%-1.0% TOTAL PRIVATE233,450237,900236,300-4,450-2,850-1.9%-1.2% GOODS PRODUCING41,85039,95044,2001,900-2,3504.8%-5.3%   MANUFACTURING30,55029,85030,950700-4002.3%-1.3%     Durable Goods21,85021,35022,100500-2502.3%-1.1%       Computer & Electrical Equipment Mfg.7,4007,5007,900-100-500-1.3%-6.3%       Fabricated Metal Products Mfg.2,3502,3502,350000.0%0.0%     Non-Durable Goods8,7008,5008,850200-1502.4%-1.7%       Food Mfg.3,9003,7503,850150504.0%1.3%   CONSTRUCTION10,5509,35012,4501,200-1,90012.8%-15.3%   MINING & LOGGING7507508000-500.0%-6.3%  SERVICE-PROVIDING248,700254,700249,400-6,000-700-2.4%-0.3%    TRADE, TRANSPORTATION AND UTILITIES53,45053,45055,0500-1,6000.0%-2.9%      Wholesale Trade9,7509,8009,700-5050-0.5%0.5%      Retail Trade35,80035,70037,200100-1,4000.3%-3.8%        Food & Beverage Stores9,7509,8509,700-10050-1.0%0.5%        General Merchandise Store2,8502,8502,70001500.0%5.6%      Transportation, Warehousing and Utilities7,9007,9508,150-50-250-0.6%-3.1%         Utilities1,7001,7001,700000.0%0.0%         Transportation & Warehousing6,2006,2506,450-50-250-0.8%-3.9%    INFORMATION5,4005,4005,5000-1000.0%-1.8%    FINANCIAL ACTIVITIES12,50012,50012,30002000.0%1.6%      Finance & Insurance9,6009,5509,350502500.5%2.7%      Real Estate, Rental & Leasing2,9002,9502,950-50-50-1.7%-1.7%    PROFESSIONAL AND BUSINESS SERVICES21,25020,95021,800300-5501.4%-2.5%      Professional, Scientific and Technical12,60012,80013,100-200-500-1.6%-3.8%      Administrative, Support and Waste8,4007,8508,2505501507.0%1.8%    EDUCATIONAL AND HEALTH SERVICES61,25060,70059,6005501,6500.9%2.8%      Educational Services13,35013,40013,650-50-300-0.4%-2.2%        College, Universities and Professional7,7507,6007,75015002.0%0.0%      Health Care and Social Assistance47,90047,30045,9506001,9501.3%4.2%        Ambulatory Health Care Services15,90015,60015,6003003001.9%1.9%        Hospitals12,95012,85012,4501005000.8%4.0%        Nursing and Residential Care Facilities6,8506,8006,8505000.7%0.0%    LEISURE AND HOSPITALITY28,50035,45028,450-6,95050-19.6%0.2%      Arts, Entertainment and Recreation3,3503,2503,300100503.1%1.5%      Accommodation and Food Services25,15032,20025,150-7,0500-21.9%0.0%         Accommodations8,65015,5008,650-6,8500-44.2%0.0%            Hotels & Motels8,50013,5007,950-5,000550-37.0%6.9%         Food Services and Drinking Places16,50016,70016,500-2000-1.2%0.0%    OTHER SERVICES9,2509,5009,400-250-150-2.6%-1.6%    GOVERNMENT57,10056,75057,300350-2000.6%-0.3%       Federal Government7,1006,8007,050300504.4%0.7%       State Government Education9,1509,3009,150-1500-1.6%0.0%       Local Government Education25,00024,75024,8002502001.0%0.8%       Other State Government8,8508,8509,2500-4000.0%-4.3%       Other Local Government7,0007,0507,050-50-50-0.7%-0.7% Change to         Apr. 2010 from    PRELIMREVISEDREVISEDCHANGES FROM% CHANGES FROMINDUSTRY BY NAICSApr-10Mar-10Apr-09Mar-10Apr-09Mar-10Apr-09 Barre-Montpelier29,70027,7002,0006.77.87.3Bennington13,20012,2009507.37.99.4Bradford4,9004,5004008.210.08.8Brattleboro24,45022,7501,7006.96.57.3Burlington-South Burlington113,700107,7506,0005.36.06.3Hartford19,85018,9509004.55.35.0Manchester11,80010,8001,0008.47.79.5Middlebury18,00016,7501,2507.08.17.4Morristown-Stowe20,25018,6001,6508.28.69.0Newport14,10012,7001,3509.711.310.9Randolph8,8008,1007008.08.68.9Rutland27,30025,1002,2008.07.79.0Springfield12,40011,3501,0508.47.59.0St. Johnsbury14,75013,6501,1007.48.39.7Swanton-Enosburg14,25013,2001,0507.28.78.7Warren-Waitsfield4,1003,9002505.64.45.9Woodstock3,4503,2502006.16.16.5Vermont Total357,250333,35023,9006.77.37.6 VERMONT LABOR FORCE AND UNEMPLOYMENTLABOR MARKET AREAS BY RESIDENCE (Not Seasonally Adjusted)April 2010 Estimates TotalNumberNumberApr-10Mar-10Apr-09AreaLabor ForceEmployedUnemployedRate (%)Rate (%)Rate (%) The annual rate of unadjusted job growth is also now at -1.0%. Though down slightly from March, the annual change has been improving over the last several months.When seasonally adjusted, April payroll jobs declined by 1,900 jobs or -0.6 percent over March. The declines were fairly widespread with losses in Construction, (-700 or -5.7%), Professional, Scientific & Technical (-300 or -2.3%) and Leisure & Hospitality, (-2,500 or -7.4%). Manufacturing added 600 jobs since March, the vast majority in Durable Goods Mfg. (+500 or 2.3%). Education & Health Services grew (+ 600 or +1.0%) and Government was up 300 jobs, due in part to hiring temporary Census workers.Employment GrowthVermont s April seasonally adjusted unemployment rate fell by two tenths of a point to 6.4 percent as a result of an increase of an estimated 600 employed and a drop of 800 in the number of those unemployed. For comparison purposes, the US seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for April was 9.9 percent, up of two tenths from March.   Private Industries239.3241.5242.5-2.2-3.2-0.9-1.3    Construction11.512.213.8-0.7-2.3-5.7-16.7    Manufacturing30.930.331.30.6-0.42.0-1.3      Durable Goods22.121.622.30.5-0.22.3-0.9      Non-Durable Goods8.88.79.00.1-0.21.1-2.2 Trade, Transportation & Utilities54.754.856.3-0.1-1.6-0.2-2.8   Retail Trade 36.636.738.2-0.1-1.6-0.3-4.2   Trans., Warehousing & Utilities8.08.08.30.0-0.30.0-3.6 Financial Activities12.612.412.40.20.21.61.6    Professional & Business Services21.621.722.1-0.1-0.5-0.5-2.3      Professional., Scientific & Technical12.612.913.1-0.3-0.8-2.3-3.8      Administrative Support & Waste8.78.58.60.20.12.41.2 Education & Health Services61.160.559.40.61.71.02.9   Private Ed. Services13.013.013.20.0-0.20.0-1.5   Health Care & Social Assistance48.147.546.20.61.91.34.1    Leisure & Hospitality 31.233.731.4-2.5-0.2-7.4-0.6      Arts, Entertainment & Recreation3.83.73.90.1-0.12.7-2.6      Accommodation & Food Services27.430.027.5-2.6-0.1-8.7-0.4 Other Services9.49.69.5-0.2-0.1-2.1-1.1  Total Government54.754.455.30.3-0.60.6-1.1     State Government17.417.217.90.2-0.51.2-2.8     Local Government30.030.130.1-0.1-0.1-0.3-0.3 Total Labor Force362,200362,400361,300-200900  Employment339,200338,600335,2006004,000  Unemployment23,00023,80026,100-800-3,100  Rate6.4%6.6%7.2%-0.2-0.8April unemployment rates for Vermont s 17 labor market areas (see chart below) ranged from 4.5 percent in Hartford to 9.7 percent in Newport. Local labor market area unemployment rates are not seasonally adjusted. For comparison, the April unadjusted unemployment rate for Vermont was 6.7 percent, down six tenths of a point from March and down nine tenths of a point from a year ago. The level of unadjusted unemployment was statistically significant from the March value.Annual Benchmark RevisionEach year in January we perform a benchmark revision of the CES (Current Employment Statistics) job counts and the LAUS (Local Areal Unemployment Statistics) employment and unemployment estimates. In the case of CES, we replace survey data with actual job counts from our Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages (QCEW) through the third quarter of 2009 and then we re-estimate fourth quarter 2009 jobs using this new information. Since CES job counts are part of the LAUS unemployment model, we also revise the household unemployment series for the year.This year our CES and LAUS revisions were much larger than normal, partly because of the rapidly changing economy and partly due to methodology changes imposed by the Bureau of Labor Statistics that had the impact of overestimating job loss in the fourth quarter of 2008 and the first quarter of 2009. This, in turn, had the impact of overestimating our unemployment rate for the first two quarters of 2009.As we continue to highlight, we can expect small sample states like Vermont to exhibit a higher degree of variability in month to month job estimates in the CES program. As a result of this change in methodology, caution should be used in interpreting a single month s results. CES payroll job numbers are now best understood in the context of their movement over several months as opposed to observed changes in a single month estimate.Starting in January 2010 the LAUS program unemployment estimates have included a new statistical smoothing component that should reduce unexplainable short term large increases and decreases in the state s unemployment rate.Source: Vermont Department of Labor. 5.21.2010center_img Apr-10 Mar-10 Apr-09 Mar-10 Apr-09 Mar-10 Apr-09 Total – All Industries294.0295.9297.8-1.9-3.8-0.6-1.3 Note: CES PROGRAM DATA ARE PRDUCED IN COOPERATION WITH THE U.S. BUREAU OF LABOR STATISTICSESTIMATES ARE PRELIMINARY AND SUBJECT TO REVISION.  SEE ANNUAL SUMMARY FOR DETAILS Burlington-S. Burlington MSA Vermont Seasonally Adjusted Nonfarm Employment in ThousandsBY NAICSPrelim.RevisedRevisedChange From:% Change From: ESTIMATED NONFARM EMPLOYMENT IN VERMONT(not seasonally adjusted) The Vermont Department of Labor announced today that the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for April 2010 was 6.4 percent, down two tenths from the revised March rate and down eight tenths from a year ago.  The unemployment rate trends continue to point to overall improvement in the labor market said Patricia Moulton Powden, Commissioner of the Vermont Department of Labor.  Our household survey shows increasing numbers of working Vermonters and a decline in the number of unemployed. However, the jobs survey showed a decline of 1,900 jobs over the month.   We believe the jobs survey is over-estimating this decline. We may see some correction in the unemployment rate when the April numbers are finalized. This volatility in monthly numbers can be expected during periods of economic recovery. Coupled with changes in methodology on the federal level, the numbers continue to point to the need to put more weight on trends versus a single month. And in Vermont, the trends continue to be positive.Seasonal Job GrowthThe total job loss in April is larger than what we have seen over the last several years. Leisure and Hospitality was the largest contributor to the overall loss down 6,950 jobs over the month. It appears the model s estimate of jobs in this sector for earlier months may have been too strong causing the April decline to be greater than expected. However, most sectors gained jobs over the month, but not enough to off-set the loss in Leisure & Hospitality.Manufacturing posted an unexpected gain of 700 jobs; most of the gain was confined to Durable Goods Manufacturing. Construction added 1,200 jobs as warmer weather boosted payrolls. Administrative Support & Waste added 550 jobs, and was mostly attributed to seasonal influences. Health Care & Social Assistance grew by 600 jobs, with all subsectors showing growth in April. Due in part to the hiring of temporary Census workers, Federal Government added 300 jobs Note: Unemployment rate is calculated as the number of unemployed divided by total labor force and expressed as a percent.Source: Vermont Department of Labor LAUS program in cooperation with the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics  Total – All Industries108.7108.9111.2-0.2-2.5-0.2-2.2 Apr.   2010  Mar.   2010  Apr.   2009  Mar.  2010 Apr.  2009 last_img read more

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‘Digging a Deeper Hole for Coal’

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Michael West for the Sydney Morning Herald:Has the government completely lost the plot? Why are they helping flood the market by backing the opening of 20 new coal mines? Why are they approving extensions everywhere when the price of coal has thudded through the floor?Anglo American has just announced a $US5.6 billion loss and put its coal and iron ore mines up for sale. Peabody is a seller. Goldman Sachs has just cut its long-term coal forecast to $US42.50 – a price at which few or no coal producers make money, ever.Yet even as the once great Anglo’s credit rating was cut to junk, Resources Minister Josh Frydenberg was enthusing at a National Press Club lunch on Tuesday about the bright future for Australian coal, a future fuelled by rising demand from India.What next from Canberra – are they contemplating a foray into the Eskimo market with an export drive in ice-blocks? Perhaps we could dispatch a trade mission to Chad and Niger to see whether they’d be interested in buying any of our nice Aussie sand.Tim Buckley, director of the Australasia Institute of Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA), a green think tank, has been saying it for some time. Even so, the sheer pace of decline has surprised him. It is all happening faster than we anticipated, he told BusinessDay.“The seaborne coal industry is suffering both excessive supply and a faster than expected decline in global demand. Chinese coal net imports fell 11.6 per cent year on year in January 2016. This is the third year of declining import demand from China, given the 30 per cent decline over 2015 and the 11 per cent decline in 2014.”Worse still for Australian thermal coal exporters, says Buckley, India’s coal imports are down 16.5 per cent year on year in the 10 months to January 2016 (India works on a financial year end of March).“The rate of decline in Indian imports has accelerated with every month this new financial year, and runs contrary to the Australian government’s forecast of double-digit growth in Indian thermal coal imports.”Even ignoring carbon budgets and stranded asset risks, he says, a temporary greenfield mine moratorium across the NSW and Queensland coal export sector would clearly be in Australia’s own national strategic interest.“Coal export markets are in a state of prolonged oversupply. Adding more supply will only further depress the coal price Australian mines receive, and given the average coal export mine is only operating at a gross cash flow break-even position (before financing, stay in business capex and before funding mine rehabilitation costs or corporate taxes), approving even more supply will push the industry further into the red.”While still small in absolute terms, China’s coal exports actually rose 162 per cent yoy to 0.6Mt for the month of January.IEEFA forecasts net imports into China will fall 20 per cent yoy for 2016 overall, which would mark the third consecutive yearly decline in what was the world’s largest coal import nation globally in 2013. As the global seaborne coal sector continues to shrink, IEEFA expects China will become an opportunistic net exporter, further eroding the scope for any global pricing stability.Full article: Digging a deeper hole for coal ‘Digging a Deeper Hole for Coal’last_img read more

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Kemper’s Clean-Coal Mega-Project Draws Federal Scrutiny

first_imgKemper’s Clean-Coal Mega-Project Draws Federal Scrutiny FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Mark Chediak for Bloomberg News:Federal regulators are investigating the estimated costs and schedule of Southern Co.’s long-delayed, $6.7 billion Kemper clean-coal plant under construction in Mississippi.Southern said in a filing Thursday it believes the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission inquiry is focused primarily on “accounting matters, disclosure controls and procedures, and internal controls over financial reporting.” Shares dropped by as much as 2 percent on the disclosure before closing at $50.62 in New York on Thursday.“Although an SEC investigation is almost never a positive, it’s hard to say what the ultimate significance of it is, given the limited information in the disclosure,” said Paul Patterson, a New York-based analyst for Glenrock Associates LLC. “Kemper has been a troubled project for some time.”Southern has spent the past six years working to build the first large-scale power plant in the U.S. to gasify coal and capture carbon before it is released into the atmosphere. The U.S. Department of Energy provided $245 million in a grants for the project, which the coal industry had been banking on as a potential way toward developing cleaner-burning technologies as pollution limits take hold.Full article: U.S. Probing Costs of Southern’s $6.7 Billion Clean Coal Plantlast_img read more

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Report Sees Economic Boon for Massachusetts in Offshore Wind

first_imgReport Sees Economic Boon for Massachusetts in Offshore Wind FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享North American Windpower:According to a new report from the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center (MassCEC), the deployment of Massachusetts’ required 1.6 GW of offshore wind is estimated to create between 2,270 and 3,170 job years during construction over the next 10 years, as well as generate $675 million-$800 million in direct economic output in Massachusetts.The Offshore Wind Workforce Report–sponsored by MassCEC and authored by Bristol Community College, UMass Dartmouth and the Massachusetts Maritime Academy–also provides analysis and recommendations to guide the training and development needs for the offshore wind industry workforce in Massachusetts. The report defines a job year as one person working full-time for one year.In 2016, Massachusetts Gov. Baker signed an energy diversification bill that authorized the largest procurement of clean energy generation in Massachusetts’ history, including approximately 1.6 GW of offshore wind energy and approximately 9,450,000 MWh of clean energy, including large-scale hydropower.“The results of the Offshore Wind Workforce Report highlight the incredible economic opportunities created by the energy diversification legislation signed by Governor Baker, in addition to ensuring the procurement of cost-effective, locally produced clean energy that will help us reduce greenhouse gas emissions,” says Matthew Beaton, Massachusetts’ secretary of energy and environmental affairs. “The offshore wind sector is poised to create thousands of well-paying job opportunities in the commonwealth, and through identifying the necessary training and credentials required, this report will help prepare Massachusetts workers to take full advantage of the industry’s significant job creation potential.”When taking into account direct, indirect (supply-chain) and induced impacts, the deployment of 1.6 GW of offshore wind is estimated to support between 6,870 and 9,850 job years over the next 10 years, as well as generate a total economic impact in Massachusetts of $1.4 billion-$2.1 billion.More: Report: 1.6 GW Of MA Offshore Wind Equals Thousands And Thousands Of Jobslast_img read more

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First Nations partners on 763MW of new wind capacity in Canada

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享CBC News:Five new green energy collaborations between private companies and Alberta First Nations are expected to create 1,000 jobs and enough renewable electricity to power nearly 300,000 homes. The partnerships are the latest phase of the provincial government’s renewable energy program.“We’re very fortunate that the Alberta government has understood us. They appreciate the need for us to become involved on the business side of alternative energy. It’s a milestone,” said Chief Roy Fox of Kainai First Nation on Monday. “We’ve been in the oil and gas sector for about seven decades … so this is another opportunity we feel the creator has given us.”The five projects, which are expected to be running by mid-2021 are as follows: The 207-megawatt Windrise project will be built southwest of Fort MacLeod by TransAlta; the 202-megawatt Cypress Wind Power project near Medicine Hat will be built by EDF Renewables Canada in partnership with Kainai First Nation; the 48-megawatt Buffalo Atlee wind farms near Brooks will be built by Capstone Infrastructure in partnership with Sawridge First Nation;  the 113-megawatt Stirling Wind project near Lethbridge will be built by Potentia Renewables, in partnership with Greengate Power Corporation and Paul First Nation; and the 193-megawatt Jenner Wind project near Brooks will be built by Potentia Renewables.Environment Minister Shannon Phillips said the projects include a minimum 25 per cent Indigenous equity component, and will bring an estimated $175 million in rural benefits like landowner payments and municipal revenues. “For too long Indigenous communities have been left out of the overall economic benefits of whatever the resource under consideration,” said Phillips at the announcement in Calgary.The average weighted price of energy for the projects will be a low 3.9 cents per kilowatt hour — just shy of the record-low Canadian price of 3.7 Alberta hit last year. For comparison, a 2016 Ontario procurement was 8.5 cents per kilowatt hour.Construction on the five projects is set to begin in 2020.More: 1,000 jobs will be created by $1.2B green energy partnerships between companies, First Nations First Nations partners on 763MW of new wind capacity in Canadalast_img read more

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Danish company signs 20-year PPA for world’s first floating offshore wind project

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享OffshoreWind.biz:Danish energy trading company Danske Commodities has signed a 20-year Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with the world’s first floating wind farm, Hywind Scotland.As the sole offtaker, Danske Commodities will take over balancing and trading of Hywind Scotland’s total volume of 30MW.Hywind Scotland is owned by Equinor (75%) and Masdar (25%). The wind farm, which is located 30 kilometres off the coast of Scotland, powers around 20,000 households.“The agreement with Hywind Scotland marks a new chapter for Danske Commodities. By adding a 20-year PPA to our long-term portfolio, we will continue to strengthen our position in the PPA market and support Equinor’s growing portfolio of renewables,” said Danske Commodities CEO Helle Østergaard Kristiansen.“Hywind Scotland is the world’s first floating wind farm and we are excited to partner up with Danske Commodities. Floating wind farms hold great potential as close to 80% of the ocean’s resource potential is in deep waters. And looking ahead, floating offshore wind is estimated to constitute 10% of the market, potentially powering 12 million homes by 2030,” said Jens Økland, Equinor Senior Vice President, Business Development, New Energy Solutions.More: Danske Commodities books Hywind Scotland power Danish company signs 20-year PPA for world’s first floating offshore wind projectlast_img read more

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Peabody warns of possible second bankruptcy in five years as coal industry declines

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享S&P Global Market Intelligence ($):The world’s largest private coal company Peabody Energy Corp. said it is in danger of its second bankruptcy filing in five years on the back of poor performance and worsening market conditions amid the coronavirus pandemic.There is “substantial doubt” the company will be able to meet its outstanding obligations when they are due within 12 months and its ability to continue is a going concern, Peabody Energy said in a Nov. 9 filing, citing the combined risks associated with the company’s third-quarter financial results, market conditions, additional collateral demands and potential noncompliance with credit agreements.Peabody is in “probable” danger of violating its first-lien leverage ratio covenant under its credit agreement, the filing stated. The company is also looking to extend the maturity of its credit revolver and is pursuing covenant relief.To mitigate this risk, the company entered into a transaction support agreement in November with the providers of 99% of the company’s surety bond portfolio to define how it will resolve roughly $800 million in additional collateral demands made by the participating sureties, the filing stated. The company is also working to improve its liquidity through other methods, including the sale of nonstrategic surplus land, coal reserves and other assets, according to the filing.“[T]here can be no assurance that we will be able to obtain a waiver of noncompliance [from creditors] or otherwise amend the credit agreement to address covenant issues, reach agreement on the comprehensive approach to address our combined liquidity risks described above, or improve the company’s overall liquidity and financial position through other means. As a result, our ability to timely meet our obligations when due or satisfy additional collateral demands could be adversely affected,” the filing stated.Peabody emerged from bankruptcy in 2017 after a yearlong reorganization process. Coal companies have faced a rising risk of default as the coronavirus pandemic accelerated a decline driven by low gas prices, cheaper renewable generation and shifting investor sentiment against fossil fuels.[Jacob Holzman]More ($): Peabody Energy warns of potential 2nd bankruptcy in 5 years Peabody warns of possible second bankruptcy in five years as coal industry declineslast_img read more

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U.S. developer Sunrun expects residential solar-plus-storage to be the new standard

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享S&P Global Market Intelligence ($):By extending its energy storage offering to all 19 states in which it operates, U.S. residential solar supplier Sunrun Inc. is positioning itself for “a market where in two, three years, every solar system has a battery,” CEO Lynn Jurich said.The company on Nov. 5 announced it would begin providing battery-backed home solar arrays in nine additional U.S. residential solar markets: Connecticut, Illinois, Maryland, New Hampshire, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina and Washington, D.C.Surging demand for batteries in Arizona, California, Hawaii, Massachusetts, New York, New Jersey and other solar markets drove a 45% jump in installations of Sunrun’s BrightBox storage system in the third quarter compared to 2019, Jurich told investment analysts on a Nov. 5 earnings call. “We expect BrightBox installations to accelerate and grow over 100% next year,” she added.In addition to offering more customers backup power during service interruptions, such as the widespread outages experienced across the U.S. West this summer during an intense heatwave, Sunrun plans to increasingly combine residential battery systems into so-called virtual power plants that rely on software to participate in wholesale energy markets as a single controllable asset.In its latest such contract, Sunrun signed a 10-year agreement with Southern California Edison Co. to dispatch 5 MW of aggregated capacity from thousands of residential solar-plus-storage systems installed across the Edison International utility subsidiary’s service territory, Jurich disclosed on the call. That builds on a host of previously announced virtual power plant contracts, including in California, Hawaii, New York and New England.The nation’s leading residential solar suppler, Sunrun deployed 109 MW of solar during the third quarter, up 2% from a year ago and 40% from the second quarter, a period heavily impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Sunrun reported third-quarter net income of 28 cents per share, compared with 23 cents per share a year earlier, on $209.8 million in revenues, down 3% from the third quarter of 2019.[Garrett Hering]More ($): ‘Every solar system has a battery’ in 2 to 3 years, Sunrun CEO says U.S. developer Sunrun expects residential solar-plus-storage to be the new standardlast_img read more

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Adult Swim

first_img Alleghany Swimming Hole Cascade Falls Splash Down Swimmers splash in the Cedar Run Pool below the falls, a three-tiered waterslide in Shenandoah National Park.Open to the public: Swimming holes on public land.Late summer in the South means heat you can see, humidity that feels like breathing through a straw, and air so stale you have to push it out of the way. The only way to escape the oppression is to either stand in front of the fridge with the door open or head down to your local swimming hole and take a refreshing dip in nature’s air conditioner. Don’t have a mountain creek running through your apartment? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered with some of the best swimming holes open to the public all summer long.NATIONAL PARKSGREAT SMOKY MOUNTAINS NATIONAL PARKGreat Smoky Mountains National Park is America’s most visited national park, and it’s not hard to see why once you venture inside its borders. Rugged mountains, diverse wildlife, and more mountain streams than you can shake a stick, or fishing pole, at. Because of the sharp terrain, most of these creeks and streams tumble over rock slides and waterfalls at some point in their travels, creating deep pools filled with water as cold as the air is hot. The age-old battle of water versus rock and earth has culminated in a swimming hole paradise.1. Midnight HoleIn the far northeast portion of GSMNP, Big Creek flows out of the Balsam Mountain region and into Tennessee via the Pigeon River. This is one of the least crowded spots in the park, and Midnight Hole is worthy of the short hike. Two rivulets flow into a deep emerald pool perfect for dropping into from the rocks above.Difficulty—Moderate. A gradual 1.5-mile hike up a rough gravel road will put you at Midnight Hole. A half mile more puts you at equally impressive, but not as swimmable, Mouse Creek Falls, a nice spur hike to get the blood flowing if you arrive before the sun is high in the sky.GET THERE—Take exit 451 off of Rt 40 near the Tennessee/North Carolina state line. Cross the Pigeon River and bear left following this road into the Big Creek area of the park. Follow the road until you reach a picnic and campground area. The trail will be before the parking on the right side.2. The SinksRemember when you were a baby and you took your baths in the sink? Of course you don’t, but if you did it would be something like this. Except colder, and momma isn’t giving you googly eyes and Cry No More baby shampoo treatments. A series of cascades flows under Little River Road in the north central part of GSMNP providing ample opportunity to bathe in the clear water. Not much privacy here, and the hydraulics can be dangerous at times, so take the trail a short way downriver for more casual swimming.Difficulty—Easy. If the water is low, head straight from the car to the river; if the water is high, take a short walk downstream.GET THERE—Take 441 South out of Gatlinburg to Little River Road for 11 miles. Pull off just before the bridge into a small parking area. A trail leaves from the information sign downstream.Swimming Hole MapSHENANDOAH NATIONAL PARKThere are so many rivers and streams meandering through Shenandoah National Park in northwest Virginia, it would be nearly impossible to walk a mile without getting your feet wet. Follow the length of Skyline Drive and you can easily access falls and pools on either side of the road, the same swimming holes homesteaders were dipping their toes in 250 years ago. So get out your denim overalls and best homemade straw hat and jump in.3. Cedar RunWhiteoak Canyon gets a lot of press being the best area for swimming holes in SNP. The namesake falls draws a ton of visitors in the summer, but just down the trail is a series of pools known as Cedar Run. The three waterfalls that make up Cedar Run all feature their own unique attractions, from natural water slides to jumping rocks. If you are in the mood for a longer hike, link up the Whiteoak Canyon Trail for an 8-mile burner.Difficulty—Moderate.GET THERE—There are several ways to get to Cedar Run. The first is to hike down the Cedar Run Trail from the Hawksbill Gap parking area between mileposts 45 and 46 of Skyline Drive. Alternately, you can hike up the same trail from the Whiteoak Canyon parking area off Rt. 600. Both are around a three mile hike, but with some elevation change so be prepared for some steep sections.4. Big Rock FallsThis quant little waterfall does not get a lot of attention because it usually gets bypassed by visitors on their way to Rapidan Camp, also known as Hoover Camp. This is where the President and his wife came to retreat and wet a line for trout in the Rapidan River. Big Rock Falls is a slight misnomer in that there are not a huge number of boulders on the small stream, but the water does flow over a large rock formation creating a natural slide into the cool waters below.Difficulty—Easy.GET THERE—Park at the Milam parking lot just short of MP 53 on Skyline Drive. Follow the A.T. for a 100 yards then turn onto the Mill Prong Trail. Follow this trail until it crosses Mill Prong a second time. It’s a three-mile round trip.BLUE RIDGE PARKWAY NATIONAL PARKThe ribbon of national park that is the Blue Ridge Parkway runs through the best landscape the Southeast has to offer. No road trip would be complete without a quick stop to take a dip in one of the numerous swimming holes easily accessed from the parkway. Just hang the suits out the window to dry.5. Skinny Dip FallsDespite its name, Skinny Dip Falls is not a nudist sanctuary. You would probably be treated with a fair amount of hostility if you chose to go au naturale at this beautiful waterfall. Easy access and a stunning setting make this a must-do if passing through on the Parkway.Difficulty—Easy.GET THERE—The short half-mile trail to the falls is directly across the Blue Ridge Parkway from the Looking Glass Overlook at milepost 417. Drink in the views of Looking Glass Rock before heading down to the falls.6. Sherando LakeIf you are on the Blue Ridge Parkway, chances are you are on a road trip, or at least you should be. Stopping on the side of the road for a picnic is great, but so is spending a three-martini lunch at a great lakeside recreation area like Sherando Lake. Facilities like tables, bathrooms, and roped off swimming areas will make you feel like you have stumbled onto some sort of backwoods country club—and you wouldn’t be far off.Difficulty—Easy.GET THERE—Take VA Rt. 814 off the Blue Ridge Parkway at milepost 16. Follow the road 4.5 miles to the entrance to Sherando Lake.Swimming SafetyTaking a hike to a swimming hole can be a relaxing and refreshing way to spend the afternoon, but can take a dangerous turn if things go awry. Stay safe by following a few simple rules when taking a dip.THE BUDDY SYSTEMThis is an oldie but a goodie: never go swimming alone.CHECK THE CURRENTRivers that seem calm on the surface can be roiling below, so wade in gradually to avoid getting swept away.DEPTH CHARGEThe water cascading over a falls can be beautiful, but can also be deadly. Hydraulics below falling water can trap you under, or rocks could pour over the top of the falls and come raining down. Make sure you are aware when wading around.LOOK BEFORE YOU LEAPAlways check the depth of a hole before jumping in. Even if it appears deep enough, hidden rocks or other debris could put a serious damper on your adventure.BAREFOOT AND BOOZYThese go together like peas in a pod. Don’t drink and dive and don’t go barefoot around places people have been drinking. Glass is sharp.Sherando LakeParkway Pool: Sherando Lake is the perfect spot to cool off along the Blue Ridge Parkway.NATIONAL FORESTSMONONGAHELA NATIONAL FORESTThe wildest stretches in Wild West Virginia reside inside Monongahela National Forest, which contains one of the most diverse ecosystems in the East. High vistas, low valleys, and lush greenery make this national forest a hiker’s playground. Miles of country roads provide the access; all you need to do is bring your denim cutoffs.7. Whitaker FallsWhitaker Falls on the Elk River lies just outside the national forest boundary, but it is such a good swimming hole, we’ll include it here. This hole has everything one could need: deep, clean water, huge expanses of rock for sunning and ledges for sending it into the water below. You can even swim behind the falls or take a ride on the rockslide just upriver. A classic if there ever was one.Difficulty—Easy.GET THERE—Whitaker Falls is visible from the road so finding it is not a problem. Take Valley Fork Rd west from Rt. 15 at the park boundary. Follow Valley Fork 6.7 miles until you see the falls.8. Knapp CreekThere are several spots to splash around on Knapp Creek, and locals have been cooling down here for generations so you know it’s good. Local touches include an old diving board and ladder bolted to a large boulder.Difficulty—Easy.GET THERE—Take Rt 39 east out of Marlington into Monongahela. Pull off just before you hit the intersection with Rt. 28. Hole is visible from the road.GEORGE WASHINGTON NATIONAL FORESTThe GWNF not only contains amazing natural wonders, but also the remnants of the former coal industry that used to dot the landscape. The coal miners came to the area for the same reason swimmers do today, an abundance of mountain streams to turn their cranks.9. St. Mary’s FallsSt. Mary’s Falls lies deep in the heart of St. Mary’s Wilderness located in the northern section of the national forest. The falls themselves are a gorgeous multi-tiered cascades with plenty of depth for leaping off the 10-foot high rock ledges that line the pool. The hike in can be a bear, but that just makes the dip all that much more refreshing at the end.Difficulty—Hard.GET THERE—The old access road appears to be washed out so take the gravel road off the Blue Ridge Parkway at mile marker 23. Take the Mine Bank Creek Trail for two miles until it reaches the junction with the St. Mary’s River Trail and turn left. Another 2-mile hike will put you at the falls.10. Red HoleThis swimming hole is located at the most northern tip of the GWNF, just south of I-66, which makes it easily reachable from the swelter of the city – Washington, D.C. that is. This piece of water is alternately known as Buzzard Rock Hole and, although neither of these monikers is particularly appetizing, this swimming hole is primo. A huge flat rock slanting into the creek provides ample space for sitting and sunning and the gentle rapids and deep pool are ideal for a family outing.Difficulty—Easy.GET THERE—From Rt. 55 take Fort Valley Road 2.5 miles south along Passage Creek. Park in the second paved lot and follow the creek north for a quarter mile where you will see the slanting rock diving into the creek.JEFFERSON NATIONAL FORESTThe southern twin of the George Washington and Jefferson National Forest covers huge swaths of southwest Virginia, meaning it covers huge swaths of awesome mountain landscape. The Bermuda Triangle formed by I-81, I-64, and I-77 holds two of the best swimming holes in Virginia.Alleghany Swimming Hole11. Cascade FallsBe prepared to break a sweat when heading to this 60-foot waterfall: a mandatory 2-mile uphill hike is required to reach it. The juice is worth the squeeze however as this is one of the most beautiful falls in the state. Little Stony Creek pours over the rocks into a deep, cold pool surrounded by soaring 200-foot rock walls.Difficulty—Moderate.GET THERE—Take exit 118 off I-81 and follow Highway 460 for 26.6 miles to Cascade Drive. Follow the signs for Cascade Falls Recreation Area.12. Falls of DismalNo need for doom and gloom when visiting this cascading falls. Dismal Creek flows over a rock structure resembling the great staircase of a southern estate creating the perfect environment for sitting or jumping into the pool at the base of the falls.Difficulty—EasyGET THERE—Take exit 98 off I-81 and follow Rt. 100 for 11 miles then turn left onto VA Rt. 42. After 10 miles turn right onto VA-606, then right again onto Dismal Creek Road. Follow this for a mile to a pull off on the right with a trail that leads down to the falls.PISGAH NATIONAL FORESTPisgah is known for many things, mainly its raw outdoors swagger and epic mountain biking trails, but when it comes to swimming holes, this national forest is no slouch. From the backcountry to back behind the cabin, there are plenty of places to soak your tired muscles after getting off the trail.13. Elk River FallsElk River Falls is one of the best swimming holes in Pisgah National Forest, with a high waterfall, deep pool, and plenty of rocky cliffs from which to leap. Flat rocks all around, a short access hike, and a generally scenic atmosphere only add to its reputation. It is no wonder Elk River Falls is one of the more popular destinations to cool off on a summer weekend. Beat the crowds by getting there early or hitting it on a weekday.Difficulty—Easy. A 15-minute hike from the parking lot puts you at the top of the falls with only a short scramble down to the pool.GET THERE—Take Elk River Rd. out of the tiny hamlet of Elk Park, N.C. for 4 miles where it ends in a trailhead. Parking may be sparse on a hot summer weekend.14. Carolina HemlockLocated at the Carolina Hemlock National Forest Campground, this section of the South Toe River has something for everyone. The water comes directly off Mount Mitchell making it extremely cold. Don’t worry, as there are plenty of flat rocks to lay out on after shocking your system by jumping off one of the surrounding rocks into the deep clear water. This is also a great spot for a short tube.Difficulty—Easy.GET THERE—From the Blue Ridge Parkway, follow Rt. 80 north 5.5 miles until you see signs for the campground.NANTAHALA NATIONAL FORESTNantahala means “land of the noonday sun” in Cherokee, which may seem great until you realize this means the sun only hits the valley floor when directly overhead. Brrrr. But water abounds in the largest of North Carolina’s national forests, and a little shade never hurt anybody. Just don’t forget your towel.15. Turtleback FallsTurtleback Falls is part of a very popular string of falls and swimming holes along the Horsepasture River outside Brevard. These falls include the photogenic Rainbow Falls and Hidden Falls, both of which attract many visitors. Turtleback is just upriver from Rainbow and features a sliding rock, vast areas of open flat rock for lazing about, and jumping areas.Difficulty—Moderate. About a two-mile hike from the parking area.GET THERE—Head south on Rt. 64 out of Brevard for 18 miles then turn south on Rt. 281. Look for signs on the left for Gorges State Park and the trailhead.16. Secret FallsConsider it a secret no longer. This 60-foot falls has been off the radar for some time due to the difficulty of access, but the Forest Service recently put in a new trail that makes getting to this deep mountain pool much easier. Plus a shallow sandy area makes this a great place for the kiddos.Difficulty—Moderate. One-mile round trip hike.GET THERE—Take Horse Cove Road east out of Highlands, N.C., for 3.7 miles and turn right onto Walking Stick Road. After 3 miles, turn right onto Forest Road (FR) 4567 where you will eventually see a small parking area and a sign for Big Shoals Trail.CHEROKEE NATIONAL FORESTThis national forest bookends Great Smoky Mountains National Park, so you know it’s good. In a region famous for its waterways, these swimming holes are your best bet.17. Baby FallsIt may be called Baby Falls, but this ain’t no kiddie pool. Put on your big boy pants if you are planning on taking a leap from the top as this falls is part of the sometimes-raging Tellico River. Besides the 15-foot cascade and main pool, you can walk the river above the falls and find shallow places for lounging. Just watch your step lest you get swept over.Difficulty—EasyGET THERE—From Tellico Plains just outside the national forest boundary, take the Cherohala Skyway (Hwy 165) east into the national forest for about 5 miles. Bear right onto River Road (FR 210), which follows the river. You will see the falls from the road.18. Conasauga FallsConasauga Falls is another spectacular cascading waterfall in the Tellico Ranger district of Cherokee National Forest. This multi-tiered drop features several small pools incorporated into the falls and has been run in a kayak at high water. Don’t be afraid to explore upriver and down for more swimming options.Difficulty—ModerateGET THERE—The trailhead for the 1.5-mile round trip hike can be found by taking Rt. 68 south out of Tellico Plains. After 2 miles, turn right onto Forest Service Road 341. Look for the large Forest Service sign and take the right fork to the trailhead.CHATTAHOOCHEE NATIONAL FORESTNorth Georgia’s Chattahoochee National Forest contains some 2,200 miles of rivers and streams, a virtual water lover’s paradise. Get off the beaten path with these two short swimming hole hikes.19. Raven Cliff FallsThe Raven Cliff Falls Trail snakes along Dodd’s Creek in the southeastern section of Chattahoochee National Forest. The trail to the falls is a moderate 2.5-mile hike, but there are numerous swimming options along Dodd’s Creek if you don’t feel up for the whole trek. The falls themselves are lined by towering cliffs and appear to come right out of the rock face, creating a unique illusion.Difficulty—HardGET THERE—From Helen, Ga., take Rt. 75 north for 1.5 miles, then take a left onto Rt. 75 Alt. Look for the Richard Russell Scenic Highway on the right after about 3 miles. The trailhead is clearly marked on the left.20. Blue Hole FallsDeath, taxes, and a swimming hole named Blue Hole—those are the guarantees of life. This particular Blue Hole lies at the base of a 15-foot waterfall on High Shoals Creek and usually features enough depth for a leap from the rocks lining the pool. Dip a toe in before you jump however, because this water comes straight from the mountains and can be shockingly cold.Difficulty—ModerateGET THERE—Take Rt. 75/17 north out of Helen for 11 miles then take a right onto Indian Grave Gap Road. This is a gravel road, but is usually passable with a normal car. There is a well-marked trailhead for the two-mile round trip hike.DANIEL BOONE NATIONAL FORESTOne can imagine the figure of Daniel Boone, great explorer and outdoorsman, emerging from the woods onto a pristine swimming hole and laying down his rifle for a dip. Maybe he climbed up that rock face and did a cannonball in sheepskin chaps, maybe it was a jackknife, but either way, I’ll bet he was refreshed afterwards.21. The RocksThe Rocks is a local’s favorite because of its deep water and plethora of (what else?) rocks to jump from. This area is located in the Red River Gorge region of the Daniel Boone National Forest, making for a very scenic swim with lots of other activities in the immediate vicinity. Several swimming holes are in this area so don’t be afraid to explore if this one is too crowded.Difficulty—EasyGET THERE—From Winchester take the Bert T. Combs Mountain Parkway east to exit 36. Take Rt. 11 north, then turn right onto Rt. 77, then right again onto Rt. 715 into the Red River Gorge. Ten miles down this road you will see the hole – look for the Mile Post 1 sign.BONUS*Dog Slaughter FallsDon’t let the ominous name turn you off from one of the most scenic falls in Daniel Boone N.F. While some falls in the area dry up in peak summer, Dog Slaughter is guaranteed to be running year-round. Its wide curtain allows you to walk behind the falls and the whole area is surrounded by overhanging rock.Difficulty—ModerateGET THERE—Take I-25 west out of Corbin, Ky., to Rt. 90 entering Daniel Boone National Forest. Look for Forest Road 195 on your right and follow that for another three miles to a wide parking area. Follow Dog Slaughter Trail #414 on a three-mile round trip to the falls. •Like TarzanOne of the best features of a classic swimming hole is the presence of a good old-fashioned rope swing. Rope swings come in many different shapes and sizes, but the proper technique is essentially the same for each.1. Grab the rope as high as you can with two hands. This will prevent you from ending up on YouTube as one of those losers who face plant in the dirt before reaching the water. If you don’t want to look like an amateur, this is the single most important step.2. Take a rocker step. This does not mean playing air guitar in mid swing, but means taking a large rock back before lift off to maximize velocity. This is where the two hands really become essential.3. Relax. When reaching the bottom of the swing arc—if you haven’t hit the ground and are currently being laughed off the lake—relax your arms so you are hanging loose; your arms, not your hands. This is also the moment to make sure the rope is not wrapped around your ankle, or anything else for that matter.4. Sweet release. Once your pendulum swing has reached its maximum altitude, now is the time to let go for maximum height. If you are looking for maximum distance, release a little sooner and straighten out like an arrow. Do not, for any reason, continue to hold onto the rope and swing back toward your launch point. This will result in the loss of your friends and possibly consciousness.JortsFrom Never-Nudes to rodeo cowboys to subway hipsters,denim has been protecting Americans, and the American way of life, for a long time. Although they have evolved over time to adapt many styles and functions, the key feature of jeans is still their durability. Nowhere is this more apparent then when sliding 20 feet down harsh stone on your butt, the rock’s roughness only thinly veiled with a thin layer of moss. This type of activity calls for cut-offs.Yes, jean cutoffs have gotten a bad rap over the years, but this does not mean they are unimportant. Ditch the board shorts and the nylon for some denim and you will notice, and feel, the difference on that first slide. Also, when you drop your jeans at the swimming hole only to reveal your ‘swimmin jeans’ underneath, you are sure to instantly gain the respect of the locals. The Sinks Cedar Run Pool Swimming Hole Map Dismal Falls Sherando Lake The trail to Midnight Hole Elk River Falls The Sinks Parkway Pool: Sherando Lake is the perfect spot to cool off along the Blue Ridge Parkway. Skinny Dip Falls Also, don’t forget to check out Jack’s Road Trip Guide as well!last_img read more