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Civil engineering in the news today - Friday 19 December 2008

Global investment in clean energy technology, including solar power and wind power, has collapsed in the past three months after hitting record levels this year...
...Venture capital investment in the industry reached a record $4.6bn (£3bn) in the first nine months of the year, despite a steep slowdown in the wider economy - The Times

Nasa plans to sell off its remaining shuttle fleet - Discovery, Atlantis and Endeavour, which between them have flown 86 missions since 1984 - when the programme is grounded, to raise funds for the cash strapped agency. But wealthy wannabe astronauts will be disappointed: their main engines will be removed before the sale, rendering them historically fascinating but astronautically defunct - The Guardian

The schools rebuilding programme has had to borrow up to £300M from the European Union because funding from banks dried up. Partnership for Schools, the agency set up to run the £45bn programme, said that the "challenging" economic situation was forcing it to go to the European Investment Bank - The Times

A swiss engineer has completed the first trip around the world in a solar-powered car. It took Louis Palmer, 36, more than 17 months to cross almost 40 countries in a three wheeled car - The Times

For years the islanders of St Helena have dreamt of ending their isolation on what must rank as one of the most remote places in the world. Just when they hoped that construction of an airport would drag the tiny British colony into the modern world, however, the project was put on hold by the government - The Times

British Land has chosen another banker to lead it through the property slump with the appointment of Chris Grigg, former head of UK business banking at Barclays, as its chief executive - Financial Times

British Land, London's largest office landlord, has hired a former senior Barclays executive to run the company amid the worst property slump in decades. Chris Grigg, 49, resigned last month as chief executive of the commercial lending unit of Barclays "to pursue other interests" - The Times

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