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News stand What the papers say

News

The Independent

Fishermen and environmentalists are up in arms over plans to scrape almost 200Mt of gravel from the floor of the English Channel to satisfy the house-building boom in the south east of England. They say the Median Deep is a crucial nursery for fish and fragile seabed habitats will be destroyed.

The Irish Times

Health and Safety regulations introduced in 1995 have failed to reduce accidents at building sites according to a Health & Safety Authority (HSA) study last week.

The HSA proposed new regulations to better regulate the design phase of projects saying the construction industry is still not meeting safety obligations.

The US government has been courting Chinese authorities in a bid to beat France, Russia and Canada to win a contract to build four 1,000MW nuclear power stations.

Financial Times

Jarvis is to cull 83 jobs in its specialist rail signalling and maintenance areas, blaming a downturn in demand. The company also announced it may sell half its stake in the Tubelines consortium in a bid to reduce debt by around £2bn.

The Scotsman

Plans to introduce bilingual signposts in the Highlands are under review following public opposition. Some residents felt the signs in Gaelic and English would be a waste of money and of no benefit.

Environmentalists have lost a seven year battle to save Hong Kong's harbour from a massive land reclamation plan. The Hong Kong government plans to build a road on the land to relieve traffic congestion. Protesters fear the harbour, a world heritage site and tourist attraction, will be destroyed.

The Times

Eurostar is considering closing its Waterloo terminus when the new high-speed line to St Pancras opens in 2007. It feels it would be too expensive to run two London terminals. The company is also seeking a new, more tourist-friendly name for St Pancras station.

The Guardian

A £12M energy research centre is to be built to compensate for a sharp fall in scientific research following the privatisation of power companies. The government chief scientific adviser Sir David King announced the plan, saying funds could eventually rise to £50M.

A new 3000km transcontinental rail route crossing Kazakhstan to connect China with Europe could be completed within four years. The £2bn project would be able to carry 40bn tonnes of goods a year.

The Kazakhstan National Railway Company is in Hong Kong looking for investors.

Portsmouth's Tricorn shopping centre is to be bulldozed after heritage minister Andrew McIntosh declined to save one of the top 10 least liked buildings in the country.

New Scientist

Researchers at Pennsylvania State University have developed an electricity generator which runs on sewage. The device breaks down harmful organic matter thereby simultaneously functioning as a sewage treatment plant. Although likely to be years in development, by producing electricity the technology could also benefit developing countries by offsetting costs of waste processing plants.

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