Texas congressman wants to recognize magic as a ‘national treasure’

Written by admin on 16/11/2018 Categories: 老域名出售

Things have been a little crazy in American politics lately, but Donald Trump isn’t the only Republican making headlines.

This week, Texas congressman Pete Sessions – along with six GOP co-sponsors – introduced a resolution to congress asking that magic be recognized as a “rare and valuable art form and national treasure.”

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The text of the resolution reads in part, “magic is an art form with the unique power and potential to impact the lives of all people” and is used to “bring wonder and happiness to others.” It also points out that “magic fulfills some of the highest ideals and aspirations” of the United States by “encouraging people to question what they believe and see.”

It also describes magic as “timeless in appeal” because it requires “only the capacity to dream.”

The resolution – which asks that magic be made a national treasure and have the government support efforts to make sure that magic is preserved – also includes a lot of information about American magician David Copperfield:

  • Whereas David Copperfield, through his magic, inspires great positive change in the lives of Americans;
  • Whereas people consistently leave David Copperfield’s live magic show with a different perspective than when they entered;
  • Whereas Rebecca Brown of Portland, Oregon, left a David Copperfield magic show with a newfound inspiration to pursue her lifelong, unfulfilled passion for dance;
  • Whereas three months after Rebecca Brown attended the David Copperfield magic show, she performed her first choreographed recital in Portland, Oregon’s Pioneer Square;
  • Whereas programs such as Project Magic, created by David Copperfield, use magic as a form of therapy for children with physical, psychological, and social disabilities;

    It’s unclear if Sessions is a fan of Copperfield.

    However, as Quartz pointed out, this admiration for magic stands in stark contrast to how the Republican-dominated House of Representatives responds to scientific research.

    “The House Science Committee even subpoenaed scientists who published research debunking a popular climate change denier theory,” read the Quartz article, titled “Republican lawmakers may not trust science, but they do believe in magic.”

    “Among the co-sponsors of House Resolution 642, ‘Recognizing magic as a rare and valuable art form and national treasure’,” Idaho’s Mike Simpson claims that “there is widespread disagreement as to the magnitude of human influence on the climate and the degree to which any effort by humanity to reduce carbon output would slow or reverse the effects of climate change.’”

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    University of Alberta students call for action to reduce fentanyl deaths

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    EDMONTON — A group of University of Alberta students is calling for action to reduce the growing number of people who are dying from fentanyl overdoses.

    Student Advocates for Public Health is encouraging support for Health Canada’s proposal to allow people to obtain the drug naloxone — which can reverse the effects of an overdose — without a prescription.

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    Related

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    • ‘It is a huge issue’: 145 fentanyl-related deaths in Alberta so far in 2015

    • Fentanyl 101: The facts and dangers

      “We see that more than 270 Albertans have died needlessly in fentanyl-related deaths,” said Rhoda Lee, who is working on her masters degree in nursing.

      “As students, we have an interest in public health and healthy public policy and we decided that the fentanyl crisis is an issue that needs to be dealt with.”

      Fentanyl is an opiod that is many times more powerful than heroin.

      READ MORE: Fentanyl 101 – what you need to know about the drug

      The Alberta figure of 270 fentanyl-related deaths is for 2015 — more than double the previous year.

      The Canadian Centre For Substance Abuse estimates that at least 655 people have died across Canada from overdoses where fentanyl was the cause or a contributing cause between 2009 and 2014. A more up-to-date number was not available.

      Naloxone kits that include a syringe and vials of the drug are already being distributed in some provinces.

      The students want the pharmaceutical industry and Ottawa to allow the drug to be sold in forms that are easier to use, such as a nasal spray and an auto-injector device similar to an EpiPen.

      “We believe that this would help people find an easier way, rather than fumbling with needles and ampules, to be able to administer this drug quickly,” Lee said.

      READ MORE: Teen’s fentanyl overdose highlights troubling trend in Alberta

      The group also supports a federal private member’s bill that calls for protecting people who phone 911 to report drug overdoses from facing charges.

      Liberal MP Ron McKinnon introduced Bill C-224 in the Commons last month and hopes it will come up for debate this spring.

      The legislation aims to encourage a person who sees someone having an overdose to call for help immediately.

      McKinnon said he is grateful for the student endorsement and hopes other groups across Canada will support the proposed Good Samaritan Drug Overdose Act.

      “I love to hear this,” McKinnon said from his constituency office in Port Coquitlam, B.C.

      “We are looking at organizations like cities to come on board. The more people who see this and recognize the value of it and speak up the better.”

      READ MORE: 29 Alberta clinics now offer naloxone kits for fentanyl overdose treatment

      McKinnon said in the United States, 34 states and the District of Columbia have some form of Good Samaritan overdose immunity law.

      Health Canada’s website says the department is seeking public comment on a proposal to allow the non-prescription use of naloxone.

      The deadline for making a submission is March 19.

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    10 years later, family of Canadian in Chinese prison still looking for answers

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    It’s been 10 years since a Canadian citizen was arrested and eventually sentenced to life in prison in China on widely condemned terrorism charges, and his wife and four young boys are still searching for answers.

    During a trip to his wife’s native Uzbekistan in March 2006, Huseyin Celil – who fled to Canada as a political refugee from China in 2001 and became a Canadian citizen four years later – was arrested by Uzbek police and handed over to Chinese authorities.

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    Rights groups said he was not given access to Canadian consular officials, faced torture in custody, a forced confession and an unjust trial simply for being an outspoken critic of China’s treatment of the Uighur people – a Muslim minority group in the country’s violence-prone far western region of Xinjiang.

    A decade later, little has been done to secure Celil’s release, highlighting a gap in the federal government’s system for the protection of Canadians abroad.

    ‘They need him right now’

    Kamila Telendibaeva says the loss of her husband is still felt daily.

    “I am raising four boys and it’s – in 10 years it’s been a very, very difficult challenge,” she says from their Burlington, Ont. home.

    “We miss him a lot. I miss him a lot. And you know we are missing him every single day … I think they need him. They need him right now.”

    Kamila Telendibaeva is seen with three of her sons during a family vacation in 2015.

    Kamila Telendibaeva/Handout

    Celil has never met his youngest son, now almost 10 years old, born just months after his imprisonment.

    “My little one, most of time, he keeps [asking] and he says, ‘If he hasn’t done anything you know, why’s he in prison?’ I keep talking to him just to remind him he [has] done nothing wrong,” Telendibaeva says.

    “They need [their] father. I feel very sorry for them, ” she adds. “They’re not seeing their father’s love … and it is not fair – it is not fair for them.”

    Arrest and extradition to China

    Telendibaeva remembers the last time she saw Celil, the couple were visiting her family in Uzbekistan in March 2006 while she was pregnant with their fourth child.

    When Celil stepped out the door of their family home to run a quick errand, well-dressed in a black suit, Telendibaeva thought he would be back in a few hours – but she never saw him again.

    Celil was arrested by Uzbek police on March 26, 2006 and quietly handed over to Chinese authorities in June 2006 to face terrorism charges in a controversial extradition that was widely criticized by the Canadian government at the time.

    Huseyin Celil is seen in this still from a family video during his citizenship ceremony in 2005.

    Family/Handout

    With no other option, Telendibaeva returned to Canada not knowing if she would ever see her husband again and hoping the Canadian government would help secure his release.

    “When you are leaving some of your loved ones behind, and three kids, and I was pregnant at that time. It was really difficult,” she says.

    “It was a really bad day.”

    Efforts to secure his release

    It took months for the federal government to even find where Celil was being held and when questioned in the House of Commons on what they planned on doing for Celil the then Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Deepak Obhrai, promised continued action.

    “As I have stated time after time, the Prime Minister is engaged and the foreign affairs minister is engaged. Not only that, but the Minister of Natural Resources, who was in China in November, talked with senior Chinese officials and he brought up this issue there,” he said.

    “We are fully engaged with the Chinese to ensure that Mr. Celil’s rights as a Canadian citizen are protected and brought to their attention.”

    In November 2006, Prime Minister Stephen Harper raised Celil’s case at the highest level with Chinese President Hu Jintao while in Hanoi, Vietnam for an economic summit.

    Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, Chilean President Michelle Bachelet, China’s President Hu Jintao (front row right to left), US President George W. Bush, Russian President Vladimir Putin and Thailand’s Prime Minister Durayud Chulanont (back row left to right) wave during the official photograph at the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in Hanoi Vietnam Sunday Nov. 19, 2006.

    /Tom Hanson

    But Secretary General for Amnesty International Canada Alex Neve says after the sentence was imposed in April, “there was almost a bit of giving up” on the part of the federal government.

    “I think the wind went out of Canada’s sails a number of years ago,” he says. “And there’s a sense of, ‘What more can we do?’”

    16×9 reached out to Global Affairs Canada to ask what more they plan on doing for Celil.

    They declined an interview and provided an email statement saying Celil’s “case remains important to the Government of Canada and continues to be raised at senior levels” and that they “continue to call upon the Chinese government to permit Canadian officials to conduct a consular visit to monitor Mr. Celil’s well-being.”

    “Our goal is to ensure that Mr. Celil is safe and treated fairly, in accordance with international norms,” the statement reads.

    China refuses to acknowledge Celil’s Canadian citizenship and reiterates that his case is an internal affair, despite his travelling on a Canadian passport at the time of his detainment in March 2006.

    “Huseyin Celil is a Chinese citizen who is serving his sentence in jail,” a spokesperson for the Chinese Embassy told 16×9 in an emailed statement.

    “We will continue to handle relevant matter in accordance with the law.”

    Controversial trial and imprisonment

    Following his extradition to China, Celil’s trial was shrouded in secrecy and the then-38-year-old eventually sentenced to life in prison.

    After his sentencing in April 2007, Celil’s family and lawyer claimed the circumstances leading up to his conviction were in violation of his human rights.

    “They say there was a signed confession,” Celil’s lawyer in Canada Chris MacLeod tells 16×9. “But quite frankly I think it’s under clear examples of torture and abuse and maltreatment. I mean he’s been in solitary confinement for years.”

    Huseyin Celil is seen in this still from a family video during a citizenship ceremony in 2005.

    Family/Handout

    To this day, MacLeod says Celil has had no access to Canadian consular services and the family in China is only permitted to see him once every few months.

    MacLeod maintains his client’s innocence amid the harsh penalty he continues to face.

    “For a Canadian citizen to somehow be captured, detained, tortured, and have no access to the Canadian government, for that person to be facing those sorts of human rights abuses is a particular affront to Canadians and the government of Canada,” MacLeod says.

    “All he’s ever done is speak out in favour of his community, his language, his culture … things that we would consider very normal by any stretch in Canada.”

    Human rights activist or international terrorist?

    Celil is a native of China and a member of the Uighurs, a repressed Muslim minority struggling to promote its cultural and religious autonomy within the region.

    Those who speak out in favour of greater independence for the Uighur people are often classified as terrorists and face harsh consequences at the hands of the Chinese government, according to rights groups.

    For decades there have been violent clashes between Chinese authorities and Uighurs, with both sides blaming each other for the bloodshed.

    Chinese officials claim militant extremists are attempting to create an independent state, while Uighur rights groups accuse the government of using unfounded accusations of terrorism to target Uighurs and justify crackdowns on peaceful protests.

    A demonstrator holds an immigration document bearing the photograph Huseyin Celil of during a protest for his release in front of the Chinese Consulate in Toronto, Ont. on November 2006.

    /Kevin Van Paassen/The Globe and Mail

    But MacLeod says the Chinese consider Celil much more than just an activist.

    “He came onto the radar of the Chinese government simply because he was quite outspoken about China’s mistreatment of the Uighur people,” he says.

    “Their worst crime that they say is that he sought a sovereign or separate state for the Uighur people.”

    Neve says Celil was a leader within the Uighur community, which may have led to China targeting him.

    “Individuals who seek to promote the rights of the Uighur people, who speak out about concerns about Chinese policies in that part of China, are regularly harassed and very frequently are tried on charges – usually trumped up charges,” he says.

    “There are thousands of Canadians detained in countries all over the world … but most of those involve valid criminal accusations … in Huseyin’s case, there are very serious human rights concerns here.”

    A sliver of hope for Celil’s future

    In a surprising move last month, China commuted the sentence of Celil and 10 other prisoners in the Xinjiang region down from life in prison to an additional 19.5 and 20-year sentences, according to Chinese news agencies.

    “It was amazing for us … we were surprised. We didn’t expect [it],” Telendibaeva says. “That’s why we don’t want to give hope and just keep pushing.”

    But the government could not confirm if the reports of Celil’s commutation are true and say they are still “seeking official confirmation.”

    READ MORE: China reduces sentences for 11 Uighurs, including Canadian

    “Celil’s case remains important to the Government of Canada and continues to be raised at senior levels,” Global Affairs Canada says in an emailed statement to 16×9.

    “We continue to call upon the Chinese government to permit Canadian officials to conduct a consular visit to monitor Mr. Celil’s well-being. Our goal is to ensure that Mr. Celil is safe and treated fairly, in accordance with international norms.”

    Telendibaeva says despite the reduction of his sentence, the family has concerns over his health – including digestive and vision issues she attributes to his extensive time in solitary confinement.

    Kamila Telendibaeva speaks in support of her husband’s release with journalist Mohamed Fahmy and Secretary General of Amnesty International Canada Alex Neve on Jan. 26, 2016.

    Global News

    “We don’t know anything. His family [in China], they are seeing him every six months. Which is – it’s very, very long. Not six days, not six weeks, six months,” she says.

    “I am saying as a Canadian, I am saying as a human, he is missing all his rights.”

    Celil has exhausted almost all of his legal options and at this point all indications show that he will not be released from prison until the age of 68, by which time his children could have families of their own.

    “At the end of the day it’s entirely up to Chinese officials to resolve this case,” says Neve.

    “But that doesn’t mean that in the face of Chinese intransigence to date that Canadian officials should give up.”

    16×9’s “The Last Moment I Saw Him” airs Saturday, March 19, 2016 at 7 p.m.

    With files from Claude Adams

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    Electricity analyst says Alberta has reasonable deadline to get off coal

    Written by admin on 26/04/2020 Categories: 老域名出售

    EDMONTON — The man hired to move Alberta away from coal-fired electricity says while it’s a complex challenge, time is on the side of the province.

    Terry Boston said Thursday that with a deadline of 2030, there’s enough lag time to craft solutions that work best for the industry, ensure fair and consistent rates for taxpayers, and keep the system running.

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    Related

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      “Between now and 2030 we have a lot of time to analyze and to take the corrective action,” Boston told reporters in a conference call.

      As part of its climate change plan, Alberta is shutting down coal-fired electricity generation by 2030 for health reasons and to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions.

      Twelve of Alberta’s 18 coal-fired generating units are already expected to be shut down by then, so the focus of Boston’s work will be on the remaining six.

      READ MORE: Alberta outlines plan for transitioning to renewable energy

      Boston, who is from Tennessee, recently retired as the head of PJM Interconnection, which is the second largest centrally dispatched power system in the world.

      He will be paid up to $600,000 and will deliver a list of options to the government by the fall.

      “What I would see is not a heavy report, but a list of alternatives that Alberta could implement, highlighted (by) a best alternative in terms of what’s best for the citizens of Alberta,” said Boston.

      “(And the plan must) ensure the reliability of (keeping) the lights on, or nothing else we do will matter.”

      READ MORE: Alberta hires energy executive as point person for plan to transition off coal

      By 2030, the plan is to have two-thirds of Alberta’s coal generation capacity replaced by renewable energy. One third will be replaced by natural gas.

      There are eight coal mines operating in Alberta. Five mines produce coal for the province’s electricity sector.

      In 2013 the electricity sector accounted for 17 per cent of Alberta’s total GHG emissions. Most of that came from coal-fired generation.

      Boston said the coal-reduction plan “will be a challenge because people have good, on-the-ground, long-term assets that they expect a return on.

      “And at the same time as you move from one energy source to another you better make sure you don’t move too fast and (that) it’s logically done.”

      Economic Development Minister Deron Bilous has said he will be working and meeting over the next few months with people in the communities that will be affected when the transition from coal occurs.

      The opposition Wildrose party is calling for the province to take a step back and complete a full economic analysis to make sure that the grid changes don’t send power prices soaring or lead to massive job losses.

      In question period on Thursday, Wildrose Leader Brian Jean said hiring Boston now with a tight timeline suggests Premier Rachel Notley’s government doesn’t really have a handle on the economic consequences of the coal phase-out plan.

      “I doubt anyone can develop a plan to shut down coal plants and get replacement electricity in just six short months,” said Jean.

      “It seems that the government set a policy and is only now trying to figure out if it’s possible or even advisable to implement it.”

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    Winnipeg water levels to peak in less than a week

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    WINNIPEG —; Above-freezing temperatures have led to an early spring flood that will see the Red River peak in Winnipeg in five or six days, according to the province.

    Spring run-off from snow melt is already underway in southern, southwest, southeast and the Interlake regions.

    A steep rise in temperatures in many parts of Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Ontario and the U.S. have led to the early spring melt.

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    Related

    • Manitoba government water strategy will cause major flood: biologist

    • 5 of the worst floods in Canadian history

      RELATED: Flooding forces state of emergency in another Manitoba municipality

      Five properties are “potentially at risk” from flooding in Winnipeg according to a city news release Thursday afternoon. The city said it’s working with the homeowners to make sure sandbags are in place if they’re needed during the peak between March 20 and March 22.

      The water levels at James Avenue were at 15.6 feet at 4:30 p.m. Thursday and are expected to crest between 16 and 17 feet. Ice jams could make the peak higher but the Red River is expected to stay in its banks and not require the floodway or community dike closures.

      RELATED: Manitoba ombudsman to look at First Nations flood-fight purchasing

      Springtime thaws combined with high river levels are making basement flooding a real risk according to the city and they offered some tips to help prepare.

      The City of Winnipeg tips to protect homes and property from flooding:

      Residents who live along the river should move or secure any structures or equipment near the water’s edge, such as docks, sheds, gazebos, irrigation pumps, and recreational equipment. The rising river level will affect each property owner differently.To ensure maximum protection against basement flooding, arrange for a licensed plumber to install a sewer line backup valve and a sump pit with pump in the basement.Inspect backup valves and sump pump drainage systems to make sure they are functioning properly.Ensure drainage is directed away from the home by extending downspouts away from the basement walls and ensuring the earth is built up around the house.

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    Could your smartwatch save your life? Alberta man says yes

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    EDMONTON – An Alberta contractor is making headlines around the world after his Apple Watch “100 per cent” saved his life while he was having a heart attack.

    Last August, Dennis Anselmo, who lives in Morinville, was on the job in Edmonton building a fence with his co-worker when he suddenly felt unwell.

    “I had hot and cold flashes at the same time and kind of a little jittery to the point where I just said to my helper, ‘I’ve got to sit down. I need to take five here,’” the 63-year-old recalled Thursday.

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    Anselmo went back to the work trailer to sit down and when he glanced down at his smartwatch, he was alarmed to see how high his heart rate was.

    “My normal heart rate usually is around 49 to 55 and it was reading 210. At that time I said, ‘I gotta call 911.’”

    First responders arrived on scene within minutes but after several unsuccessful attempts to slow his heartbeat, Anselmo was taken to the Royal Alexandra Hospital.

    “At this point I still didn’t know if I was really having a heart attack or not, I actually had to ask and they said, ‘yes, definitely. You are having a heart attack.’”

    READ MORE: Man’s Fitbit records the exact moment he is dumped

    After Anselmo’s heartbeat was regulated, doctors performed an angiogram which found one of his lower arteries was 80 per cent blocked. Doctors put in a stent which alleviated the problem.

    Six months later, Anselmo is on heart medication and feels great. However, doctors told him the outcome could have been much worse had he ignored his symptoms.

    “They said most people with my symptoms probably would have gone home thinking they had the flu, as I did, and the second heart attack may have happened through the night,” he said.

    “There was a good chance that if that happened, there could have been more permanent damage done to my heart and (the) possibility of even dying from it.”

    READ MORE: Researching the life-saving potential of ‘wearable tech’

    Anselmo said he was relieved the ordeal ended the way it did and absolutely credits his Apple Watch for alerting him to the warning signs.

    “If I didn’t have it the outcome may have been way different.”

    Anselmo said his heart attack even made his wife come around on the purchase of the wearable technology, which she was not overly thrilled about to begin with.

    “I know my wife wasn’t happy when I first bought the watch but she even had the comment that it paid for itself.”

    Since sharing his experience with Apple, Anselmo’s story has been told around the world, in countries including Australia, Vietnam and the U.K.

    Follow @CaleyRamsay

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    Rob Ford continues cancer battle in hospital amid false reports he died: city staff

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    TORONTO —; Contrary to earlier reports on social media, former Toronto mayor Rob Ford’s condition appears to be stable as he continues his struggle with a rare but aggressive form of cancer.

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    老域名怎么购买 and Reddit saw a flood of reports that claimed the mayor had died from complications related to pleomorphic liposarcoma, but a statement put out by the councillor’s office Thursday said he remains at Mount Sinai Hospital undergoing treatment in Toronto.

    READ MORE: ‘Get well soon’ website launched for Rob Ford

    “With his family beside him, Councillor Ford is currently in hospital as he continues his battle against cancer,” the statement read.

    “The Ford family asks for privacy during this difficult time, and thank the people of Toronto and around the world for their ongoing prayers and support.

    “Should there be any developments, a further release will follow.”

    Meanwhile, Mayor John Tory and several city councillors issued statements on 老域名怎么购买 in support of Ford.

    READ MORE: Former Toronto mayor Rob Ford back in hospital for cancer treatment

    Ford was admitted to Mt. Sinai Hospital late last month for ongoing treatment of tumours on his abdomen.

    Doctors at Mount Sinai Hospital are combating the cancer with surgery and an innovative targeted chemotherapy known as the Panov Program.

    Despite his diagnosis in September 2014 and ongoing treatment, Ford has continued to work as a city councillor for the western suburb of Etobicoke North since October 2014 after bowing out of the mayoral race due to his health.

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    Scientists warning of a record low for Arctic sea ice

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    Scientists warn that the area covered by this winter’s Arctic sea ice could turn out to be the lowest ever measured.

    The news comes on top of a long season of freakishly warm weather at the top of the planet, including above-freezing days at the North Pole and a months-long string of temperature records.

    “The winter, overall, has been extremely warm in the Arctic,” said Ted Scambos, a glaciologist at the National Snow and Ice Data Centre in Colorado.

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    Scambos said the ice season still has a week or so to go and a sudden frosty surge could bring ice levels above the previous record low, set last year.

    READ MORE: Revamped satellite data shows no pause in global warming

    “It would not be surprising at all to have a late growth.”

    But most years, the sea ice maximum has already been reached by this point.

    “(Sea ice) has been quite low,” Scambos said. “Most of the days in February were records for that day.”

    Sea ice extent is now slightly under the previous satellite-era record low maximum of 14.54 million square kilometres. Most of the ice loss has occurred north of Siberia.

    Canadian waters such as Baffin Bay and the Labrador Sea are about average or slightly above it for sea ice. The Gulf of St. Lawrence, which is included in the centre’s estimations, is largely ice-free.

    WATCH: Pushed by climate change: Lake in Northwest Territories falls off cliff

    Arctic sea ice is a crucial part of the northern ecosystem, relied on by organisms from algae to polar bears.

    But it’s also a significant factor on weather for the rest of the planet. An ice-free Arctic has already been linked by some studies to multi-day rains or storms in more southerly latitudes.

    And so far, there’s been less of it around this winter than ever before.

    February’s average ice cover was the lowest since satellite records began. So was January’s.

    And the nine months between May 2015 and January 2016 saw the highest values for average global temperatures ever seen. January’s temperature was above normal by the highest margin of any month on record.

    “Right at the turn of the year there was a very unusual warm event in which you had these atmospheric rivers that basically piped warm air from the Azores right to the Barents and Kara Sea and even to the North Pole, where you had above-freezing conditions for a day or so,” Scambos said.

    “Even a station near the North Pole briefly recorded above-zero conditions, which are very unusual, if not unprecedented.”

    Although an unusually strong El Nino created warm winters in many areas this year, Scambos said that weather system didn’t have much to do with the balmy Arctic.

    “If there’s a relationship, it’s fairly tenuous,” Scambos said.

    “Past El Ninos have not had this kind of an impact on the Arctic. The fact we’re surpassing the record by fairly significant amounts in January and February has to do with the profound Arctic warming that we’re seeing in addition to the El Nino pattern.”

    WATCH: Vancouver hosts meeting to discuss slowing climate change in Arctic

    It’s not clear, however, what impact the low winter coverage will have on the coming summer. Low winter maximums are not always followed by equally low summer minimums and much depends on what happens in June, said Scambos.

    Arctic sea ice has been declining at the rate of about 12 per cent per decade since satellite monitoring began in the late 1970s.

    The Arctic has been warming at about twice the rate of the rest of the globe and is now about four degrees warmer than it was before climate change.

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    No details on Yarmouth ferry as tourist season approaches

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    There are less than three months before the Yarmouth ferry is supposed to set sail and yet the company hasn’t yet secured a ferry for the route.

    Bay Ferries was originally supposed to find a ferry for the Yarmouth-to-Maine route in mid-December. At the time Transportation Minister Geoff MacLellan said he was “confident” a ship would be found on time, and since then he’s stuck to the same line.

    “I’m still feeling confident,” MacLellan said Thursday.

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    READ MORE: No ferry? No problem for Yarmouth-to-Portland service, says MacLellan

    Without the ferry the province says it can’t pin down the total subsidy the company will receive from the government. It also means Bay Ferries can’t publicly market the route or sell tickets, and it also can’t confirm route timing or the days the ferry will operate for people hoping to plan vacations.

    Despite the drawbacks, MacLellan says Bay Ferries is still in a “good place” for the coming season.

    “There is no concern and cause for panic at this point,” MacLellan said.

    The key time for ticket sales starts in April, MacLellan says, adding that Bay Ferries chairman and CEO Mark MacDonald isn’t saying it’s too late to save the season. However, the company says it isn’t commenting on the issue until it secures a boat for the route.

    The April timeline for ticket sales is raising eyebrows with other people.

    NSCC marketing and business professor Ed McHugh says the company has already lost a “chunk of ticket sales.”

    READ MORE: No Yarmouth ferry forces bus tour company to cancel planned Nova Scotia trips

    “Start selling tickets in April, you’re too late,” he said.

    Opposition Leader Jamie Baillie says he’s concerned the delay selling tickets will hurt ridership levels which could in turn affect how much money taxpayers will have to put towards the ferry.

    “There is no doubt in my mind that we’re all going to be paying a lot more because they are dragging their feet into March about a service that’s supposed to start in June.”

    Nova Star Cruises operated the ferry route in 2014 and 2015. Low ridership in 2014 was a contributing factor to the government paying $21 million dollars for the first sailing season. Ultimately the government spent almost $40 million on the ferry in it’s first two years of operation.

    READ MORE: Bay Ferries Limited to take over operation of Yarmouth Ferry

    In October, the government ditched Nova Star Cruises for Bay Ferries. At the time MacLellan said Bay Ferries was “the right partner” for the government.

    Whether taxpayers will be liable for lower than expected ticket sales in the 2016 sailing season won’t be known until a boat is secured and a final contract is signed between Bay Ferries and the government.

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    TransCanada to acquire Columbia Pipeline Group for US$13B

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    CALGARY – Calgary-based pipeline giant TransCanada said Thursday it has struck an agreement to acquire U.S. energy company Columbia Pipeline Group in a US$13 billion deal.

    The deal with Columbia Pipeline Group includes the assumption of US$2.8 billion in debt.

    Columbia Pipeline owns more than 24,000 kilometres of gas pipelines in the U.S. The Houston-based company operates a network of interstate natural gas pipelines extending from New York to the Gulf of Mexico, with a significant presence in the Appalachia production basin.

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    Related

    • TransCanada confirms talks about potential deal after U.S. report 

      TransCanada said the merger will create “one of North America’s largest regulated natural gas transmission businesses, linking the continent’s most prolific natural gas supply basins to its most attractive markets.”

      READ MORE: TransCanada confirms talks about potential deal after US report 

      “The assets complement our existing North American footprint which together will create a 91,000-kilometre (57,000-mile) natural gas pipeline system connecting the most prolific supply basins to premium markets across the continent,” Russ Girling, TransCanada’s president and chief executive officer, said.  “At the same time, we will be well positioned to transport North America’s abundant natural gas supply to liquefied natural gas terminals for export to international markets.”

      Under the terms of the all-cash deal, unanimously approved by the Boards of Directors of both companies, Columbia shareholders will receive US$25.50 per common share, an 11 per cent premium based on Columbia’s closing stock price on the NYSE of US$23.00 as of March 16, 2016 and a 32 per cent premium to the volume-weighted average price over the last 30 days. This represents an aggregate transaction value of approximately US$13 billion including the assumption of approximately US$2.8 billion of debt.

      The deal is subject to Columbia shareholder approval and certain regulatory approvals.

      TransCanada has made headlines in recent years for its challenges in building new crude oil pipelines, like Keystone XL and Energy East.

      With files from

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    Ben Melzer is the first European transgender man on Men’s Health cover

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    Ben Melzer has made history as the first European transgender man to grace the cover of Men’s Health magazine.

    Melzer, 29, is appearing on the April collector’s cover of the publication in Germany after entering a social media competition that tallied votes from readers.

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    “When I entered the cover model contest, many of the other men had no idea that I am a transgender model,” he told NBC News.

    But it turns out a lot of the magazine’s readers were “curious to hear [his] story.”

    READ MORE: Matrix filmmaker Lilly Wachowski comes out as transgender

    “I really hope that I can change attitudes,” he told The Telegraph. “When you are born this way, you have no choice. So many people are hiding who they truly are, so I really wanted to give the trans community visibility. Show that we’re just normal people.”

    “There was no hero to look up to,” he continued. “But, when I ended my transition, I thought to myself, ‘Why can’t you be that hero for somebody?’ So that’s what I’m aiming for. If I can reach just one person, I will be more than happy. I want to give hope and comfort to those who ask themselves every day why they were not born in a different body.”

    READ MORE: Transgender man with Asperger’s shot and killed by police in Arizona

    Men’s Health posted this photo to their Instagram account — Melzer is second from right.

    View this post on Instagram

    – ORDER YOUR OWN COPY NOW -. . First time ever – you have the possibility to order a collectors edition copy online. . ‼️ FIND THE LINK IN MY BIO ‼️. #men #menshealth #fitguy #fitness #powerful #potd #malemodel #ftm #ftmmodel #workhard #believe #workout #transguy #trainhard #training #fit #lifestyle #love #life #inspire #instagood #motivation #inspiration #instadaily #photooftheday #germany #staystrong #transformation #tattoo #abs

    A post shared by BENJAMIN MELZER (@egoshooter) on Mar 14, 2016 at 5:24am PDT

    He also promoted his cover on his own Instagram page.

    View this post on Instagram

    JUST A SMALL REMINDER‼️ . I will be on the Collectors Edition Cover of Men’s Health Magazine, in April, here in Germany. I would like to add that I am going to be the FIRST transguy, in Europe, to achieve that. It is an absolute honor for me and has been my lifelong dream. . I want to clarify that I will not be featured on the main cover as unfortunately reported on a few occasions!. . Thanks again for all your support!! I am extremely grateful for everyone that has voted for me. Love y’all 😘😘😘. #ftm #ftmmodel #transguy #transman #transgender #fit #fitguy #fitness #fitnessmodel #love #life #healthy #lifestyle #muchlove #strength #powerful #believe #germany #menshealth #cover #instagood #inspiration #motivation #instadaily #muchlove #transformation #german #workout #workhard #tattoo #abs

    A post shared by BENJAMIN MELZER (@egoshooter) on Feb 10, 2016 at 10:54am PST

    Approximately a year ago, the American edition of the magazine featured 27-year-old transgender man Aydian Dowling on a cover. The European version of the magazine has 50,000 copies available for online purchase and people already subscribing.

    Follow @CJancelewicz

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    Arrest made in the homicide of Teresa Robinson 10 months after her death

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    Ten months after the body of 11-year-old Teresa Robinson was discovered in a forested area of Garden Hill First Nation, RCMP have confirmed they have made an arrest.

    Manitoba RCMP made the announcement in a news release Thursday afternoon. Little information was released other than that the person arrested was a male.

    “While we understand that this arrest will generate a lot of questions, we are not in a position to provide further information at this time as there are a number of investigative steps currently being undertaken,” Sgt. Bert Paquet said through the release.

    RELATED: Family, friends come together in Winnipeg to remember Teresa Robinson

    The girl disappeared May 11, 2015. She had been missing for six days before her body was found in the woods. Members of the First Nations community originally believed Robinson had been mauled to death by a bear.

    WATCH: Global News’ ongoing coverage after Teresa Robinson’s death

    Supporters gather to remember Teresa Robinson

    00:51

    Supporters gather to remember Teresa Robinson

    02:39

    Manitoba RCMP treating death of 11-year-old girl as homicide

    02:04

    Uncertainty surrounds the death of young girl on Manitoba First Nation

    02:46

    RCMP say cause of Garden Hill girl’s death still unconfirmed



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    • Manitoba girl found dead, may have been mauled: chief

      READ MORE: Manitoba girl found dead, may have been mauled: chief

      Five days after discovering her body, officers said they believed foul play was involved in her death and began investigating the incident as a homicide.

      In early February RCMP took DNA samples from men aged 15 to 66 on a voluntary basis.

      READ MORE: RCMP taking DNA samples in connection to Teresa Robinson’s homicide

      Manitoba RCMP will release more information on Friday according to the release.

      Grand Chief Derek Nepinak was briefed by Manitoba RCMP in Winnipeg regarding the arrest, according to a news release from the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs.

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    Saskatchewan Huskies win CIS personal awards

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    The quest for CIS gold kicks off Thursday for both the Saskatchewan Huskies men’s hockey team and the women’s basketball squad. Before they start battling for their respective national championships, some personal awards were handed out.

    Goaltender Jordan Cooke was a double honouree. Not only was the second-year netminder named a first team all-Canadian, he was named goaltender of the year. He was also a finalist for CIS player of the year.

    Cooke set a new Huskies record in the 2015-16 season with 19 wins in conference play.

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    Related

    • Huskies beat Cougars in all-Saskatchewan Canada West rematch

    • Saskatchewan Huskies men’s hockey team wins Canada West

    • Saskatoon Blades captain Nick Zajac reflects on his WHL career

      Also honoured from the men’s hockey team was first-year forward Kohl Bauml, who was named to the all-rookie team. The Saskatoon product led the Huskies with 33 points in 28 regular season games. He was also a nominee for CIS rookie of the year.

      The Huskies, who are seeded second at the University Cup, take on the Carleton Ravens in their quarter-final matchup as they look for their second national championship.

      READ MORE: Celebration short-lived as Huskies refocus for University Cup

      From the women’s basketball team, fifth-year forward Laura Dally got the nod as a first-team all-Canadian after leading the Huskies in points-per-game, three point percentage and overall minutes played.

      Dally was also a finalist for the CIS player of the year award.

      The second-ranked hoopsters started their march for the national championship with a 73-62 win over the Ottawa Gee-Gees Thursday in the Final 8 taking place at the University of New Brunswick in Fredericton.

      Two Huskies not taking part in national championships also received national honours.

      Chan de Ciman of the men’s basketball squad has been named to the CIS all-rookie team. The first-year point guard led the Huskies in assists and finished second in total points.

      And Julia Flinton is ending her university hockey career on a high note. The fifth-year Huskie defender was named a CIS first-team all-Canadian.

      Flinton scored more points than any other blueliner in the nation this season.

      Jack Haskins contributed to this story

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