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Civil Engineering in the papers today - Monday 1 December 2008

Construction and property Nakheel, the government-owned developer of Dubai’s man-made palm islands, has cut 500 jobs, or 15 per cent of its workforce, as it scales back projects amid the global financial crisis. . . . .

"We have the responsibility to adjust our short-term business plans to accommodate the current global environment," it said in a statement. "The redundancies are regrettable, but a necessity dictated by operational requirements which are in turn dependent on demand" – The Times

Some of Britain’s biggest companies are scrambling to try to reduce their carbon emissions before being named and shamed by the Government and being hit with a hefty bill. Stagecoach, the FTSE 100 transport group, Gala Coral, the private equity owned gaming company, and Matalan, the retailer, have mandated Spice, the FTSE 250 utility services group, to monitor and reduce their emissions after the Government’s latest green guidelines were signed into law last week – The Times

Important decisions about the future of coal power in Britain are likely to be made today when the government’s climate change committee sets out plans to de-carbonise the economy.
The committee will publish its first report recommending how Britain can achieve its target by cutting greenhouse gas emissions by 80% by 2050, which could eventually see the country ending almost all fossil fuel use to generate energy or run cars and public transport – The Guardian

Motorists will have to switch to electric cars if Britain is to meet its legally binding commitment to cut carbon dioxide emissions, a Government report warns. The Committee on Climate Change will recommend that large numbers of motorists must switch to the greener vehicles by 2025 – The Guardian

Just outside Bristol, a driver is filling a J Sainsbury delivery truck with fuel. It looks like petrol but is in fact produced from rotting rubbish. This innovation in green fuel technology is turning what was previously regarded as a source of environmental blight landfill waste – into an opportunity for companies to save money while bolstering their green credentials – Financial Times

When engineers secured the last cross-sea section of a new rail tunnel to the floor of Istanbul’s Bosphorus Strait on September 23, they were doing much more than completing a remarkable feat of engineering. They were also bringing Turkey a significant step closer to realising a century old dream of acting as a key transport hub between Europe and the Middle East – Financial Times


China is no longer immune from the sickness circling so many other countries in the world. After cooling gradually during the course of the year, the Chinese economy slowed much more abruptly in September and October, catching companies, economists and government officials by surprise. Just as the collapse of Lehman Brothers deepened the credit crunch in the west, it also seemed to cause a sharp jolt it confidence in China – Financial Times

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