Elephants are the vital part of temple festivals in Kerala. They are used as a tribute to the God and are major attractions during these festivals. Most of the elephants are kept in captivity. The abuse and isolation that they have to face have been a much-debated topic.
.. Nalapathenneeswaram Sree Mahadeva Temple in Cherthala, situated in Alappuzha district has decided to go against the tides as they said that they will replace elephants with wooden structures.
Source: Kerala Temple Sets An Example By Replacing Elephants With Wooden Structures For Festivals
Every year, thousands of pilgrims trek through dense forested hills in the Pamba River basin to the abode of Lord Ayyappa during the annual pilgrimage. Sabarimala is part of the Periyar Tiger Reserve, a rich biodiversity home to several species of wild animals and plants.
However, pollution caused by pilgrims, especially dumping of plastic waste, has emerged as a threat to the ecosystem in and around the famous temple.
When a group of wildlife and environment volunteers from the state visited the path leading to Sabarimala a few days ago, they found huge amount of plastic waste in the forest, including wrappers, bottles, carry bags, etc. They allege that the cleaning staff responsible for clearing garbage from the pathways usually dump it in the forests after collection.
Source: Elephant dies in Kerala after eating plastic: Who is to blame? | The News Minute
The case is of particular interest to street art lovers everywhere because it involves the famed “United Nations of graffiti” in Queens, New York called 5Pointz.
The mecca for the world’s most prominent street artists has been demolished and turned to luxury condos. This is the first time that graffiti writers—once considered a scourge upon cities, but now increasingly lauded as artists—won a lawsuit based on the Visual Artists Rights Act of 1990 (VARA), which bestows artists certain rights to their work regardless of who owns it or where it’s installed.
Source: 5Pointz graffiti artists were awarded millions after developer Jerry Wolkoff painted over their pieces — Quartzy
Germany will launch a pilot project offering free public transport in five cities to address environmental concerns, local media reported on Tuesday.
Among the cities considering the municipalization of transport services are the former West German capital, Bonn, and Essen, Reytlingen, Mannheim, and Herrenberg.
Source: Germany considers free public transport to address air quality crisis
The trouble is, the elections seem unlikely to help. Italian politics consists of three main groups: the center-left, led by Matteo Renzi; the center-right, headed by Silvio Berlusconi; and the anti-establishment Five Star Movement, led by Luigi Di Maio.
According to recent polls, none will be able to form a government. The expected result is either a wobbly “grand coalition” or a prolonged stalemate, leading in due course to new elections.
This time will be different. Italy’s public debt stands at a towering 132 percent of gross domestic product, and the policies needed to put it on a sustainable downward track are nowhere in sight.
Source: Don’t Be Complacent About Italy’s Elections – Bloomberg
The ducks are beginning to line up for yet another global debt crisis. US mortgage rates are hinting at another crash, student debt crises loom in both the US and UK, consumer and corporate debt is at record levels and global debt to GDP ratio is higher than it was during the financial crisis.
When you look at the figures you realize there is an air of inevitability of what is around the corner. If the last week has taught us anything, it is that markets are unprepared for the fallout that is destined to come after a decade of easy monetary policies.
Global debt is more than three times the size of the global economy, the highest it has ever been.
Source: Global Debt Crisis II Cometh
For European banks, it’s a headache that just won’t go away: the 944 billion euros ($1.17 trillion) of non-performing loans that’s weighing down their balance sheets.
There are various ways of calculating soured loans. The European Central Bank advises that non-performing asset indicators should be interpreted with caution because the definition of impaired assets and loss provision differ between countries.
Source: IBC: What It Takes To Become A Suitable Bidder
The combined annual cost of servicing debts for all families in the UK is expected to climb from £56billion to an “eyewatering” £72billion.
It comes after years of cheap credit fuelled the economic recovery from the 2007-08 financial crisis, with rates held at a record-low of 0.5% for seven years, before being slashed to 0.25% in the aftermath of the 2016 Brexit referendum.
Source: Looming debt crisis as interest payments set to rocket over next five years, research by Labour uncovers – Mirror Online
Despite a return of volatility to the stock market, the premium that investors want on loans that are packaged and offered as bonds has hit its lowest level since the financial crisis of 2008 and 2009.
According to a report in Financial Times, the collateralized debt obligation market has been surging during the past two years, as better yields drove more buyers to that part of the investment market. That has resulted in more issuances of collateralized loan obligations to outpace last year, which in and of itself was a record.
Source: Premiums on Packaged Loans Dip to Crisis Lows | PYMNTS.com
.. By this time next year, we will have had another 2008-2009 style global economic and financial market crisis. And we will do so despite Janet Yellen’s recent reassurances that we would not have another such crisis within her lifetime.
There are two basic reasons to fear another full-blown global economic crisis soon: The first is that we have in place all the ingredients for such a crisis.
The second is that due to major economic policy mistakes by both the Federal Reserve and the U.S. administration, the U.S. economy is in danger of soon overheating, which will bring inflation in its wake.
That in turn is all too likely to lead to rising interest rates, which could very well be the trigger that bursts the all too many asset price bubbles around the world.
Source: US Economy Is in Danger of Overheating and Exploding Into Financial Crisis | Economic Intelligence | US News