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In the papers today - 22nd May 2008

The new ecotowns will face their first legal challenge today when a judicial review case is launched against a new town at Long Marston near Stratford on Avon...

...A local campaign will attack the process by which the government has chosen 15 shortlisted sites to become 10 new towns – The Financial Times

Swedish police detained two men on suspicion of planning to sabotage a nuclear power station after one of them was discovered entering it with small amounts of highly explosive material - The Independent

Britain must step up its construction of offshore wind farms if it is to meet its target of producing 15% of energy needs from renewable sources, the chief executive of a leading utility said yesterday. At the present rate, Britain is on course to produce between 5% and 7% of its energy from renewables, Scottish and Southern Energy's Ian Marchant said - The Guardian

An Alpine-style cable car to ferry people across the Thames in east London should replace plans for a £500m six-lane road bridge, say leading transport analysts commissioned by Transport for London. The bridge has been strongly opposed by local people and environment groups - The Guardian

The rocketing price of oil has forced the world's largest airline to make huge cuts to its fleet, staff and timetable as the industry struggles to cope with growing economic uncertainty. American Airlines said the industry was not built to withstand the huge increases in fuel costs and would scrap 75 planes and up to 12% of its routes - The Guardian

Global corporations are donating millions of dollars to China's earthquake victims but only small amounts to those affected by the cyclone in Burma. Aid agencies say that media coverage of the Chinese disaster has prompted a better response to appeals for cash - The Times

Two weeks after being sworn in as Prime Minister, Silvio Berlusconi kept an election promise yesterday by taking his cabinet to Naples to declare war on the city's rubbish dumps, crime wave and illegal immigrants. Vowing to "wash the Piazzas of uncertainty", he approved a decree opening emergency landfills in specially designated military zones - The Times

British Land has sold the Willis building in the City of London to St Martins, the property developer, for £400M. The building, designed by Foster and Partners and sited opposite Lloyd's of London, has 496,000 square feet in two adjoining freehold buildings of ten and 28 storeys, including four retail units - The Times

Government plans to give £22M employees the right to ask for time off for training, in an effort to increase the level of skills in the workforce, have divided employer groups. They have been greeted with a mixture of support, reservation and opposition, while professional groups are emphasising the initiative will succeed only if linked to business strategy - The Daily Telegraph

The new diplomas being introduced to rival A-levels faced more criticism after the number of pupils expected to take them fell by half. Ministers admitted many schools and colleges were not prepared for the courses, which will be run for the first time in September. Jim Knight, the schools minister, said some had been forced to "pull out" because facilities were inadequate and teachers had not been trained. Just 20,000 teenagers will now take diplomas, which combine academic study with vocational training, instead of the 40,000 estimated - The Daily Telegraph

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