Wednesday, July 31, 2019
Biography of Edgar Allan Poe Edgar Poe was born in Boston on January 19, 1809. That makes him Capricorn, on the cusp of Aquarius. When Poe was 6, he went to school in England for 5 years. He learned Latin and French, as well as math and history. He later returned to school in America and continued his studies. Edgar Allan went to the University of Virginia in 1826. He was 17. Edgar Allan had no money, no job skills, Edgar went to Boston and joined the U. S. Army in 1827. He was 18. He did reasonably well in the Army and attained the rank of sergeant major.In 1831, Edgar Allan Poe went to New York City where he had some of his poetry published. He submitted stories to a number of magazines and they were all rejected. Poe had no friends, no job, and was in financial trouble. In 1835, Edgar finally got a job as an editor of a newspaper because of a contest he won with his story, Ã¢â¬Å"The Manuscript Found in a BottleÃ¢â¬ . Edgar missed Mrs. Clemm and Virginia and brought them to Rich mond to live with him. In 1836, Edgar married his cousin, Virginia. He was 27 and she was 13.As the editor for the Southern Literary Messenger, Poe successfully managed the paper and increased its circulation from 500 to 3500 copies. Despite this, Poe left the paper in early 1836, complaining of the poor salary. In 1837, Edgar went to New York. He wrote Ã¢â¬Å"The Narrative of Arthur Gordon PymÃ¢â¬ but he could not find any financial success. He moved to Philadelphia in 1838 where he wrote Ã¢â¬Å"LigeiaÃ¢â¬ and Ã¢â¬Å"The Haunted PalaceÃ¢â¬ . His first volume of short stories, Ã¢â¬Å"Tales of the Grotesque and ArabesqueÃ¢â¬ was published in 1839. Poe received the copyright and 20 copies of the book, but no money. Poe found himself without a regular job once again.He tried to start a magazine called The Stylus and failed. He won a hundred dollars for his story, Ã¢â¬Å"The Gold BugÃ¢â¬ and sold a few other stories to magazines but he barely had enough money to support hi s family. Often, Mrs. Clemm had to contribute financially. In 1844, Poe moved back to New York. Even though Ã¢â¬Å"The Gold BugÃ¢â¬ had a circulation of around 300,000 copies, he could barely make a living. He and his family moved to a small cottage near what is now East 192nd Street. Virginia's health was fading away and Edgar was deeply distressed by it. Virginia died in 1847, 10 days after Edgar's birthday.After losing his wife, Poe collapsed from stress but gradually returned to health later that year. On September 27, Poe left Richmond for New York. He went to Philadelphia and stayed with a friend named James P. Moss. On September 30, he meant to go to New York but supposedly took the wrong train to Baltimore. On October 3, Poe was found at Gunner's Hall, a public house at 44 East Lombard Street, and was taken to the hospital. He lapsed in and out of consciousness but was never able to explain exactly what happened to him. Edgar Allan Poe died in the hospital on Sunday, Octo ber 7, 1849.Quotes from Edgar Allan Poe Ã¢â¬Å"It will be found, in fact, that the ingenious are always fanciful, and the truly imaginative never otherwise than analytic. Ã¢â¬ Ã¢â¬â from Ã¢â¬Å"The Murders in the Rue MorgueÃ¢â¬ Ã¢â¬Å"It is more than probable that I am not understood; but I fear, indeed, that it is in no manner possible to convey to the mind of the merely general reader, an adequate idea of that nervous intensity of interest with which, in my case, the powers of meditation (not to speak technically) busied and buried themselves, in the contemplation of even the most ordinary objects of the universe. Ã¢â¬ Ã¢â¬â from Ã¢â¬Å"BereniceÃ¢â¬
To: Dr. Lynna Martinez Subject: Calaveras Vineyards Valuation As per your request, my associates and I have calculated a valuation for Calaveras Vineyards using the present value of cash flows. We used the valuation of future cash flows method in order to value to value the company. We have come to the conclusion, based on a number of future projections, that the best valuation of the vineyards is $4,356,000 in assets and $1,104,000 in equity. The process at determining this valuation was as follows: 1.First, using the projected EBIT forecasted income statement; we took out the 37% tax, change in working capital, and CAPEX for 1994-1998 and added back the depreciation and amortization expenses to arrive at free cash flows. We assumed that 1996-1998 would need an extra 100k in CAPEX in order to project the reinvestment necessities for the company. 2. In order to discount those free cash flows, we had to find the discount rate of the company using a weighted average unlevered Beta, and the risk free rate vs. the market risk premium: a.Beta: This was determined by using the three comparable companies and their unlevered betas as a percentage of what product lines they relate to. b. The risk free rate was taken from the standard 30 year T-bonds rate of 5. 85%. c. The risk premium used was the expected return of small companies less the return of long term government bonds, which was 7. 4% historically from 1926 to 1992. All of these values were used to calculate a discount rate of 14. 5% for Calaveras which was used to discount the cash flows. The total discounted cash flows equal $1,585,000 for 1994-1998. 3.Next, the tax shield for Calaveras was calculated by using the interest payments for each year and multiplying each value by the companyÃ¢â¬â¢s tax rate of 37%. It was assumed that we used the 9. 5% interest rate, per your suggestion, instead of the average interest expense provided in the projected income statement. These future values were then discounted u sing the interest rate. The total PV of tax shield for 1994-1998 valued at $383,000. 4. For the terminal value calculation, we chose to use a range of growth rates. The range that we chose to use for growth rates was 1%, 1. 5%, 2%, and 2. %. We believe that Calaveras will continue to produce a high quality wine upholding a strong brand name and position in the market. Along with this, we believe that the wine industry as a whole will be growing into the future because of a growing economy. These rates represent indefinite growth; therefore, we are positioning your company to be growing slightly above the industry average. The free cash flow that we used to calculate the terminal value was from the year 1997. We did this because we felt that the cash flow in 1998 was not a true representation of future cash flows.In 1998, there was a large drop in current liabilities due to the drop in current loans; this caused the change in working capital to be unusually high. We believe, Calavera s will return to normal levels of working capital. This will be after the new marketing push and establishment of more revolving line of credit for planned future growth in sales. 5. We discounted the terminal values of free cash flows at the same discount rate that we discounted the free cash flows. We then averaged the range of present value terminal values to get an average present terminal value of free cash flows. This value was $1,820,000.We then calculated the terminal values of the interest tax shields by taking the 1998 interest tax shield and using the terminal value equation, with a discount rate of 9. 5% because we discount interest tax shield using the interest rate. This then gave us a range of terminal values of the interest tax shield. The average was $568,000. In conclusion, the PV of FCF (1585k), the PV of TS benefits (383k), PV of TV of CF (1820k), and PV of TV of TS (568k) all total to a current asset value of $4,356,000 for Calaveras Vineyards. Please feel free to let us know if you have any further questions or requests per the CalaverasÃ¢â¬â¢ valuation.
Tuesday, July 30, 2019
A SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT STRATEGY FOR THE MALTESE ISLANDS 2007-2016 Proposed by the National Commission for Sustainable Development 2 A SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT STRATEGY FOR THE MALTESE ISLANDS 2007-2016 National Commission for Sustainable Development 20th December 2006 This proposed Sustainable Development Strategy for the Maltese Islands was adopted by the National Commission for Sustainable Development on 13 November 2006, in terms of Article 8 (7f) of the Environment Protection Act (Chapter 435 of the Laws of Malta).It is being submitted by the Commission to the Cabinet of Ministers for possible endorsement by the Government of Malta. This document does not necessarily reflect the views of the Government of Malta. 2 TABLE OF CONTENTS EXECUTIVE SUMMARY Objective and Mandate Sustainability is a Two-way Street Implementing the Strategy Layout Priority Areas 1. INTRODUCTION 1. 1 The Process of Drafting the Strategy 1. 2 The Mandate 1. 3 The Main Benefits of a Sustainable Development Strategy 1. 4 The Criteria Underpinning the Strategy 1. Layout of the Document 2. UNDERLYING PRINCIPLES 2. 1 The Overarching Vision and Goal 2. 2 Sustainability is Multifaceted 2. 3 The Democratic Dimension: Participation is Necessary 2. 4 Social Responsibility and the Ethical Dimension 2. 5 The Political Dimension: Integrative Legislation and Policy 2. 6 The International and Regional Dimensions 3. THE PROPOSED STRATEGY FOR MALTA 3. 1 Managing the Environment and Resources 3. 2 Promoting Sustainable Economic Development 3. 3 Fostering Sustainable Communities 3. 4 Cross-cutting Strategic Issues 3. Cross-cutting Strategic Issues 5 5 6 6 7 7 9 9 9 11 11 11 12 12 12 12 13 13 14 15 15 35 47 57 58 4. IMPLEMENTING THE STRATEGY 4. 1 Institutionalising the Development of the Strategy 4. 2 Identifying Responsibilities and Structures 4. 3 Setting Targets, Monitoring and Evaluation 4. 4 Devising Participatory Schemes 4. 5 Collaboration between the Public and Private Sectors 4. 6 Coordinating a nd Funding the Strategy 5. THE WAY AHEAD 5. 1 Revising the Strategy 5. 2 Ongoing Consultation 6. THE PRIORITIES APPENDIX 1: PRIORITY STRATEGIC DIRECTIONS 63 63 63 65 65 67 68 69 69 69 71 73 3 EXECUTIVE SUMMARY The process of drafting the National Strategy for Sustainable Development was initiated during the 5th meeting of MaltaÃ¢â¬â¢s National Commission for Sustainable Development (NCSD), held on 9 December 2002, when the Commission appointed a Task Force to oversee the preparation of a National Strategy for Sustainable Development, consisting of an overarching vision and principles, listing the aspirations of Government, civil society and the private sector in this regard, and outlining methods of implementation, taking into account MaltaÃ¢â¬â¢s capacities and constraints.This decision was taken in line with the functions of the Commission, as listed in Article 8(7) of the Environmental Protection Act (Act XX 2001). The Task Force met soon after it was appointed and set in mot ion a consultative process to prepare the National Strategy for Sustainable Development. In March 2006, the National Commission for Sustainable Development appointed a second Task Force, in order to update the original draft of the National Strategy for Sustainable Development, published in July 2004, by incorporating suggestions put forward by various organisations and individuals that were consulted during 2004 and 2005 and by government ministries, departments and public sector agencies that were onsulted in March 2006. That version was published in April 2006,2 and presented for discussion at a National Conference on Sustainable Development, held on 22 April 2006 at the Mediterranean Conference Centre. A third draft of the Sustainable Development Strategy for the Maltese Islands was drawn up to incorporate suggestions put forward during the April 2006 Conference.Following a second round of consultation with government departments and other public sector agencies, a fourth draft (the current document) was prepared by a third Task Force appointed by the Commission for Sustainable Development and presented to the Commission on 13 November 2006. The Commission adopted this document and decided to submit it to the Cabinet of Ministers for possible endorsement by the Government of Malta This proposed Strategy represents the views of the NCSD and does not necessarily reflect the views of the Government of Malta. Objective and MandateThe objective of drawing up a National Strategy for Sustainable Development was first established in the aftermath of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED), when the Maltese Government, together with the governments of other nations, committed itself to adopt such a Strategy so as to Ã¢â¬Å"build upon and harmonise the various sectoral, economic, social and environmental policies and plans that are operating in the countryÃ¢â¬ and to Ã¢â¬Å"ensure socially responsible economic development while protec ting the resource base and the environment for the benefit of future generations. Governments also agreed that the Strategy should Ã¢â¬Å"be developed through the widest possible participationÃ¢â¬ and that it should be Ã¢â¬Å"based on a thorough assessment of the current situation and initiativesÃ¢â¬ (Agenda 21, Chapter 8, paragraph 8. 7). In September 2000, some 150 Heads of State, including Malta, signed the Millennium Declaration and reaffirmed their support for the principles of sustainable development and Agenda 21. They also agreed on the Millennium Development Goals, including the need to Ã¢â¬Å"integrate the principles of sustainable development into country policies and programmes and reverse the loss of environmental resources. (Millennium Development Goal 7). 1 2 See http://home. um. edu. mt/islands/ncsd/analysis_public_consultation. pdf http://home. um. edu. mt/islands/ncsd/draftstrategydocument_2006. pdf 5 This activity at UN level prompted the European Union to p repare its own Strategy for Sustainable Development3 in 2001, which was renewed in June 2006. The EU Strategy contains targets and actions on seven key priority challenges, and outlines guiding principles for sustainable development.The Malta Strategy builds upon and is informed by the Sustainable Development Strategy of the EU. In addition, as a result of its accession to the EU, Malta has embarked on wide-ranging reforms in various sectors, produced national strategic documents in key areas, transposed EU directives in line with the acquis communautaire, upgraded its environmental legislation, and bound itself to adopt measures which are strategically aimed at achieving sustainable development goals.MaltaÃ¢â¬â¢s Strategy is also in line with the Mediterranean Strategy for Sustainable Development. 4 These commitments, among others, have imposed an obligation and a mandate for Malta to adopt a sustainable development strategy. Malta has, following UNCED, undertaken various actions which can be considered conducive to sustainable development. These were however not couched within an overarching sustainable development strategy. This Strategy is intended to satisfy this need.It is the result of the dedicated work of members of the National Commission for Sustainable Development, particularly those forming part of the task forces appointed by the Commission, and also draws on extensive public consultation. It contains an overarching vision and related principles, reflecting the aspirations of the people as expressed in the consultation process. It sets targets and related performance indicators in line with such aspirations and with national commitments, and outlines methods of implementation taking into account MaltaÃ¢â¬â¢s capacities and constraints.This proposed Strategy for Sustainable Development reinforces the strategic vision identified in key Malta Government policy documents, including the National Reform Programme and the Draft National Strategic Re ference Framework. Sustainability is a Two-way Street In various parts of this document, civil society participation is encouraged. Such participation should not be taken to imply armchair criticism, but involvement in the pursuit of sustainable development goals.While it is the GovernmentÃ¢â¬â¢s responsibility to officially formulate, fund and implement the national sustainable development strategy, there is an equal responsibility placed on individuals, constituted bodies and civil society in general to play their part in supporting initiatives that foster sustainable development, as a way of achieving a better quality of life for current and future generations. This may involve changes in the way individuals conduct their life, but social responsibility is central to the concept of sustainable development. Implementing the StrategyThe success of this Strategy will lie in its implementation. A prerequisite for successful implementation is an Action Plan relating to the strategic directions, particularly the priority ones. The Action Plan needs to include specific indicators, budget allocations and time frames, thus rendering it amenable to regular monitoring. This Strategy should be undertaken once the priority strategic directions are approved by the Government. 3 Ã¢â¬Å"A sustainable Europe for a Better World: A European Union Strategy for Sustainable DevelopmentÃ¢â¬ COM (2001) 264 final. See http://www. planbleu. org/actualite/uk/MediterraneanStrategySustainableDevelopment. html 6 Layout This report is organised in six chapters. Chapter 1 describes how the Strategy was drawn up and the criteria underpinning it. Chapter 2 explains the overarching vision underpinning the Strategy, referring to the various dimensions of sustainable development. Chapter 3, which presents the Strategy, is structured in four sections, covering the environmental, economic and social pillars of sustainable development, as well as cross-cutting issues.Chapter 4 deals with the implementation of the Strategy. Chapter 5 presents suggestions for the way forward, with a reminder that the Strategy is an ongoing process requiring periodic revisions. The final chapter lists the priority areas, accompanied by indicators and targets. The focal point of this document is Chapter 3, which, as stated, contains the proposed Strategy, under the following four main headings: (1) managing the environment and resources; (2) promoting sustainable economic development; (3) fostering sustainable communities; and (4) cross-cutting strategic issues.A number of strategic directions are proposed with regard to each heading. These strategic directions are only accompanied by indicators or targets in cases where priority areas are identified, and are intended to serve as guideposts for the attainment of sustainable development goals in the long term. The priority areas, on the other hand, are to be interpreted as an undertaking by Government to attain the targets indicated within the time frames indicated. Priority AreasThe document identifies 20 priority areas, which were given major importance during the consultation process and which the NCSD considered as warranting foremost attention for the attainment of sustainable development goals in Malta. These priority areas are accompanied by indicators and targets. They are considered to have a direct positive effect on society as a whole, in that they improve the quality of life of the population, are in line with sustainable development goals and could be used to gauge whether Malta is moving towards or away from sustainability.The priority strategic directions so identified are the following: 1. The Environment Climate Change. Take steps to reduce greenhouse gas emissions through transport policy and an energy policy that seeks to promote environmental protection, competitiveness and security of supplies and, as a result, decouple the rate of growth of GHG emissions from economic growth. Air Quality. Take re medial action to control emissions of air pollutants (ambient levels of particulate matter, sulphur dioxide, carbon monoxide, benzene, lead, ozone, heavy metals and nitrogen oxides), and achieve compliance with European standards.Nature and Biodiversity. Halt loss of biodiversity by 2010, and achieve management of protected areas by 2008. Freshwater. Adopt a policy with the aim of ensuring the utilisation of water resources in a manner that is environmentally and economically sustainable, while safeguarding the water needs of the population, and of the agricultural, commercial and industrial sectors, and achieve good quantitative status by 2015. Seawater. Sustain compliance with the Bathing Water Directive and achieve compliance with Barcelona Convention standards. Wastes.Prevent and minimise waste by achieving EU waste-related objectives and targets, reviewing MaltaÃ¢â¬â¢s Waste Management Strategy by 2007. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7 7. Land use. Protect, maintain and improve the urban and rural environment and, through the planning system, protect the open countryside from uses, particularly residences, which can be more appropriately located in urban areas. Transport. Reduce car ownership rates to the EU average by 2014. Attain 1995 bus patronage levels by 2014 (40 million passengers). 8. 9. The Economy Economic Growth.Adopt policy measures so that the growth of GDP per capita in real terms occurs at a rate which will enable the Maltese economy to converge towards the EU average. 10. Employment. Create employment opportunities to generate income and improve the quality of life of the population, taking into consideration environmental and social impacts and adopt policy measures so that the ratio of total employment to the working-age population in Malta converges with the EU average and reaches at least 57 per cent by 2010. 11. Labour productivity.Adopt policy measures to increase average labour productivity at a rate of 1 per cent per annum over the EU average by 2010, while attempting to balance wages, taxation and productivity, in collaboration with the social partners. Society 12. Poverty reduction. Reduce or, at least contain, the current level of 15 per cent of the population at risk of poverty and decrease the ratio of population aged over 65 at risk of poverty from 20 per cent to 15 per cent, by 2010. 13. Labour force participation of women. Adopt policy measures so that the labour force participation rate of women increases to 40. per cent by 2010. 14. Health. Decrease the ratio of overweight/obese population in line with the EU average by 2010 by, amongst other things, enhancing the focus on healthy living and prevention, in order to reduce the need for curative care. 15. Education. Continue to adopt measures to decrease the early school leavers rate to 35 per cent by 2010 Cross Cutting Issues 16. Spatial development plan. By 2010, draw up an integrated spatial development plan to take forward the National Strategy for Sustainable Development, with the participation of major stakeholders. 7. Economic Instruments. By 2008, draw up a strategy to enhance the use of economic instruments, such as charges, taxes, subsidies, deposit refund schemes, and trading schemes to apply the polluter pays principle and to promote sustainable development in Malta. 18. Enforcement. By 2008, put in place an audit of enforcement arrangements to assess the adequacy of the current mechanisms and to promote integration of responsibilities and reduction of overlaps. Implementation 19. Institutional setup.By 2008, put in place a permanent structure, appropriately staffed and funded, to monitor and review the National Strategy for Sustainable Development on an ongoing basis, under the auspices of the National Commission for Sustainable Development, and hold an annual Conference with the participation of major stakeholders to critically evaluate progress relating to the Strategy. 20. Sustainability indicators. By 2008, establish and fund an entity responsible for compiling and evaluating sustainability indicators. This entity should work closely with the National Commission for Sustainable Development and the National Statistics Office. 1. INTRODUCTION 1. 1 The Process of Drafting the Strategy The process of drafting the National Strategy for Sustainable Development was initiated during the 5th meeting of MaltaÃ¢â¬â¢s National Commission for Sustainable Development (NCSD), held on 9 December 2002, when the Commission appointed a Task Force5 to oversee the preparation of a National Strategy for Sustainable Development, consisting of an overarching vision and principles, listing the aspirations of government, civil society and the private sector in this regard, and outlining methods of implementation, taking into account MaltaÃ¢â¬â¢s capacities and constraints.This decision was taken in line with the functions of the Commission, as listed in Article 8(7) of the Environmental Protection Act (Act XX 2001). The Task Force met soon after it was appointed and set in motion a consultative process to prepare the National Strategy for Sustainable Development. In March 2006 the National Commission for Sustainable Development appointed a second Task Force7, to update the original draft of the National Strategy for Sustainable Development, published in July 20048 by incorporating suggestions put forward by various organisations and individuals that were consulted during 2004 and 2005 and by government ministries, departments and public sector agencies that were consulted in March 2006. That version was published in April 20069 and was presented for discussion at a National Conference on Sustainable Development, held on 22 April 2006 at the Mediterranean Conference Centre. 0 A third draft of a Sustainable Development Strategy for the Maltese Islands was drawn up to incorporate suggestions put forward during the April 2006 Conference. Following a second round of consultation with government departments and other public sector agencies, a fourth draft (the current document) was prepared by a third Task Force11 appointed by the Commission for Sustainable Development and was presented to the Commission on 13 November 2006.The Commission adopted this document in terms of Article 8 (7f) of the Environment Protection Act (Chapter 435 of the Laws of Malta) and decided to submit it to the Cabinet of Ministers for possible endorsement by the Government of Malta. 1. 2 The Mandate With the setting up of the National Commission for Sustainable Development in 2002, in terms of the Environment Protection Act (2001), Malta took the first steps to develop a National Strategy for Sustainable Development.The NCSDÃ¢â¬â¢s main remit is to advocate national sustainable development across all sectors, to review progress in the achievement of such sustainable development and to build consensus on action needed to achieve further progress. The NCSD is also charged with identifying relevant processes or policies which may undermine sustainable development, and with proposing alternative processes or policies for adoption by the Government.One of the specific The Task Force was composed of Lino Briguglio, as coordinator, Godwin Cassar, Marguerite Camilleri, Victor Axiak and Ray Cachia Zammit 6 See http://home. um. edu. mt/islands/ncsd/analysis_public_consultation. pdf. 7 The second task force was composed of Lino Briguglio, as coordinator, Godwin Cassar, Marguerite Camilleri, Paul Pace, Martin Spiteri and Marisa Scerri. 8 See http://home. um. edu. t/islands/ncsd/draftstrategydocument. pdf 9 http://home. um. edu. mt/islands/ncsd/draftstrategydocument_2006. pdf 10 See http://home. um. edu. mt/islands/ncsd/conference_report_22-04-06. pdf 11 The third task force was composed of Lino Briguglio as coordinator, Godwin Cassar and Marguerite Camilleri. 5 9 tasks of the Commission is Ã¢â¬Å"to prepare a National Strategy for Sustainable DevelopmentÃ¢â¬ (Chapter 435 of the Laws of Malta, A rticle 8).The objective of drawing up a National Strategy for Sustainable Development was first established in the aftermath of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED), when the Maltese Government, together with the governments of other nations, committed itself to adopt such a strategy so as to Ã¢â¬Å"build upon and harmonise the various sectoral, economic, social and environmental policies and plans that are operating in the countryÃ¢â¬ and to Ã¢â¬Å"ensure socially responsible economic development while protecting the resource base and the environment for the benefit of future generations. Governments agreed also that the strategy should Ã¢â¬Å"be developed through the widest possible participationÃ¢â¬ and that it should be Ã¢â¬Å"based on a thorough assessment of the current situation and initiativesÃ¢â¬ (Agenda 21, Chapter 8, paragraph 8. 7). In September 2000, some 150 Heads of State, including Malta, signed the Millennium Declaration and reaffirmed their support for the principles of sustainable development and Agenda 21.They also agreed on the Millennium Development Goals, including the need to Ã¢â¬Å"integrate the principles of sustainable development into country policies and programmes and reverse the loss of environmental resourcesÃ¢â¬ (Millennium Development Goal 7). 12 This activity at UN level prompted the European Union to prepare its own Strategy for Sustainable Development13 in 2001, which was renewed in June 2006. The EU Strategy contains targets and actions on seven key priority challenges and outlines guiding principles for sustainable development. 4 The Malta Strategy builds upon and is informed by the EU Sustainable Development Strategy. In addition, as a result of its accession to the EU, Malta has embarked on wide-ranging reforms in various sectors, produced national strategic documents in key areas, transposed EU directives in line with the acquis communautaire, upgraded its environmental legis lation, and bound itself to adopt measures which are strategically aimed at achieving sustainable development goals.These commitments, among others, have imposed an obligation on and a mandate for Malta to adopt a National Strategy for Sustainable Development. Malta has, following UNCED, undertaken various actions which can be considered conducive to sustainable development15 but these were not couched within an overarching sustainable development strategy. The Strategy contained in this document is intended to satisfy this need. See http://www. un. rg/millenniumgoals/ Ã¢â¬Å"A sustainable Europe for a Better World: A European Union Strategy for Sustainable DevelopmentÃ¢â¬ COM (2001) 264 final. 14 The seven priorities emerging out of the renewed EU Strategy are: Ã¢â¬ ¢ Climate change and clean energy Ã¢â¬ ¢ Sustainable transport Ã¢â¬ ¢ Public health Ã¢â¬ ¢ Sustainable production and consumption Ã¢â¬ ¢ Conservation and Management of natural resources Ã¢â¬ ¢ Social inclusion, demography and migration Ã¢â¬ ¢ Global poverty and sustainable development challenges. 5 See Report submitted by the Government of Malta to the World Summit on Sustainable Development (2002). http://home. um. edu. mt/islands/Malta_WSSD. pdf 13 12 10 1. 3 The Main Benefits of a Sustainable Development Strategy The main advantage of drawing up a National Strategy for Sustainable Development is that such a strategy informs policy-making agents across different sectors. It also provides a framework for a systematic approach within an institutionalised process of consultation and consensus building.The National Strategy for Sustainable Development should serve as a guide in prioritising actions that are undertaken by all members of society to ensure the prudent use and management of resources in a way that meets the needs of the present without compromising the needs of future generations, thus contributing to a better life for everyone. The Strategy addresses social, economic and envi ronmental concerns in a coherent manner and permits policy makers to assign relative priorities to these three pillars of sustainable development.It affords an opportunity for identifying specific initiatives and for committing authorities towards their implementation within defined time frames. The extensive public consultation exercise that was carried out enriched the process by encouraging participatory schemes, and the exercise was an educational experience in itself for the participants and facilitators. 1. 4 The Criteria Underpinning the StrategyThe criteria on which the Strategy was based are similar to those set out by the United Nations Department for Economic and Social Affairs16 namely that the Strategy should: Ã¢â¬ ¢ seek to integrate economic, social and environmental considerations; Ã¢â¬ ¢ be inter-sectoral and multilayered; Ã¢â¬ ¢ have a long-run perspective and an ethical dimension with regard to future generations; Ã¢â¬ ¢ be developed on the basis of broad part icipation and generate a feeling of ownership by stakeholders; Ã¢â¬ ¢ be backed by strong political commitment; Ã¢â¬ ¢ serve to develop capacity and itself generate an enabling environment; Ã¢â¬ ¢ promote the development of monitoring and assessment procedures; Ã¢â¬ ¢ foster an educative process and a sustainable development culture; Ã¢â¬ ¢ be coherent, in that there should be a balance between the funding potential and strategy priorities; and Ã¢â¬ ¢ be anchored in sound technical and economic analysis. 1. 5 Layout of the Document This report is organised in six chapters. Chapter 2, which follows this introduction, explains the overarching vision underpinning the Strategy, referring to the various dimensions of sustainable development. Chapter 3, which presents the Strategy, is structured in four sections, covering the environmental, economic and social pillars of sustainable development, as well as cross-cutting issues. Chapter 4 deals with the implementation of the Strategy .Chapter 5 proposes a way forward, with a reminder that the Strategy is an ongoing process requiring periodic revisions. The final chapter lists the priority areas, accompanied by performance indicators and targets. 16 UN DESA (2002). Ã¢â¬Å"Guidance in Preparing National Sustainable Development Strategies,Ã¢â¬ available at http://www. un. org/esa/sustdev/publications/nsds_guidance. pdf 11 2. UNDERLYING PRINCIPLES 2. 1 The Overarching Vision and Goal The National Strategy for Sustainable Development is primarily aimed at improving the quality of life of all members of society, promoting convergence between the interests of different sectors and layers of society and between the interests of current and future generations. 2. 2 Sustainability is MultifacetedSustainable development must be based on a multifaceted approach, covering environmental, economic and social concerns, since the quality of life is dependent on these factors considered together and not in isolation from one a nother. This holistic approach requires a long-term view of development, rather than one based on short term economic gains. It assigns major importance to the integrity of nature and biodiversity, as well as to the eradication of poverty, the removal of social injustice and other factors that work against human welfare of current and future generations. For this reason, economic development must be planned and executed within a framework that respects environmental capacity constraints and conservation priorities.It should be emphasised that sustainable development cannot be compatible with economic stagnation and retardation Ã¢â¬â the word Ã¢â¬Å"developmentÃ¢â¬ itself suggests improvements, including material ones. It is for this reason that, in this document, the need for economic development is given due importance, emphasising the point that sustainable development is not just an environmental issue, but a multidimensional and multifaceted one. However, while it is recog nised that sustainable development objectives need to take into account economic realities, it is likewise recognised that to date, in spite of remarkable efforts towards environmental protection, such constraints have often excessively shifted the national priority towards economic requirements. The Strategy drawn up in this document acknowledges this reality.Furthermore it sets as a top national priority the need to improve our quality of life and of the environment, in an effort to safeguard the long-term prospects of economic growth and social wellbeing. 2. 3 The Democratic Dimension: Participation is Necessary Directly or indirectly, all members of society are potentially affected by decisions related to sustainable development. Public participation in decision-making is therefore an essential feature of sustainable development. Principle 10 of the Rio Declaration states that sustainable development issues are best handled with the participation of all citizens concerned, and t hat these should have the information and opportunity to be able to participate in decision-making processes, including judicial redress. Agenda 21 emphasises the need for enabling the participation of major groups.More recently, the World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD) Johannesburg Declaration recognised the importance of a broad-based commitment to public participation in policy-formulation, decisionmaking and implementation at all levels. In this regard, Malta has signed the UNECE Aarhus Convention on Access to Information, Public Participation in Decision-making and Access to Justice in Environmental Matters and, following accession to the EU, has adopted the EU directives relevant to this convention, namely Directive 2003/4/ and 2003/35. 12 Public participation is important for two principal reasons. First, public participation is a good in its own right, empowering people both individually and collectively and reducing social exclusion and alienation.Second, decision s taken through participatory processes are sounder because they are based on a broader spectrum of knowledge and are easier to implement because they are owned by a wider group of people. 2. 4 Social Responsibility and the Ethical Dimension While it is the GovernmentÃ¢â¬â¢s responsibility to officially formulate, fund and implement a national Sustainable Development Strategy, there is an equal responsibility placed on individuals, constituted bodies and civil society in general to play their part in supporting initiatives that foster sustainable development, as a way of achieving a better quality of life for current and future generations. This may involve changes in the way ndividuals conduct their lives, but social responsibility is central to the concept of sustainable development. Sustainability has a strong ethical dimension and can be considered as a value to be upheld. In this regard, the issue of responsibility towards future generations takes centre stage Ã¢â¬â this a spect of sustainable development was an important component of the most widely used definition of sustainable development, as proposed by the Bruntland Commission in 1987, which states that sustainable development is the improvement in the quality of life of current generations without compromising that of future ones. There are also ethical considerations relating to science and technology, since these have major impacts on sustainability.It is important that scientific and technological developments have the improvement of quality of life as a central aim. Ethics also have an important role in the promotion and sharing of knowledge and in the participation of stakeholders in the process. The association between sustainable development and matters such as information, transparency and participation is also ethically based, as noted above. The keyword with regard to the ethical dimension of sustainable development is Ã¢â¬Å"responsibilityÃ¢â¬ and this pertains to environmental qu ality, political matters, use of economic resources, education, culture, intergenerational concerns and international affairs. 2. The Political Dimension: Integrative Legislation and Policy The political dimension of sustainable development relates to the need for strong political commitment from all layers of authority, including Government and local authorities. It is therefore important that those in authority recognise the benefits of sustainable development and take steps to promote it. The multifaceted nature of sustainable development requires cooperation and effective linkages between the different government departments and parastatal organisations at national and local level. In this context, the National Commission for Sustainable Development is a useful and important vehicle for co-operation and effective interface, both at the national and local level, between the various Government entities.The political dimension is also relevant because the process of sustainable dev elopment requires consensus-building on the ways in which natural and economic resources are to be utilised. Sustainable development is primarily a political process since it is based on constant negotiation 13 between the various individuals and groups that have different interests with regard to the use of resources. The process also involves subsidiarity Ã¢â¬â a principle associated with the decentralisation of power and the provision of an enabling environment, including material assistance to the decentralised units, in order to achieve sustainable development objectives.In general, sustainable development requires a good legal foundation to ensure protection of the environment, to promote macroeconomic stability, to safeguard the welfare of vulnerable groups and to cater for the interests of future generations. Moreover, achieving the desired results requires an integrated approach. 2. 6 The International and Regional Dimensions Agenda 21 created a new development model, en dorsed by the 2002 World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD), aimed at preparing the world for the challenges of the 21st century. It placed the primary, though not exclusive, responsibility on national governments, which were expected to adopt national strategies, plans, policies and processes conducive to sustainable development, in order to secure the well-being of current and future generations.The international commitments of states to promote sustainable development at the regional and international levels emanate from ethical and mutual interest considerations. The ethical obligations stem from the concept of human solidarity. Actions by one state that place a burden on other states or that disregard the plights of other states work against such solidarity. This is one important reason why collaboration is necessary, and should also be an underlying reason for countries, Malta included, which form part of the donor country group within the United Nations to accept intern ational commitments, including those proposed at UNCED and the WSSD, even when such commitments do not produce material gains to the donor countries.Another ethical consideration is that Planet Earth has a limited capacity to deal with negative environmental, economic and social impacts, and collective responsibility in therefore called for. The Ã¢â¬Ëmutual interestÃ¢â¬â¢ consideration is associated with the fact that many sustainable development problems are not confined within the borders of nation-states. Obvious examples are climate change, which has an international dimension, and air and sea pollution, which generally have regional impacts. There are also economic aspects of sustainable development connected with trade and aid, which have clear regional and international mutual interest dimensions.There are many international and regional arrangements for coordination and co-operation including the United Nations, the European Union and the Mediterranean Commission for Sus tainable Development, within which Malta operates at the international and regional level. These have developed and promulgated their own sustainable development strategies and plans, and member countries have an obligation to abide by the commitments which they undertake within such organisations. 14 3. THE PROPOSED STRATEGY FOR MALTA This chapter presents the National Strategy for Sustainable Development adopted by Malta, with reference to the environmental, economic and social dimensions.These three pillars of sustainable development are interrelated and action in this regard should be integrated. In this Chapter, the three dimensions are treated separately, in different sections, for the purpose of exposition only. There are a number of cross-cutting issues which cannot easily be categorised under any one dimension, and these are considered separately in the last section of the chapter. A number of strategic directions are proposed with regard to each heading. These strategic di rections are intended to serve as guideposts for the attainment of sustainable development goals in the longer term, are only accompanied by indicators or targets in cases where priority areas are identified.The priority areas, on the other hand, are to be interpreted as an undertaking by Government to attain the targets within the time frames indicated. This proposed Strategy for Sustainable Development reinforces the strategic vision identified in key Malta Government policy documents, including the National Reform Programme and the Draft National Strategic Reference Framework. 3. 1 Managing the Environment and Resources 3. 1. 1 The Main Environmental Challenges Malta's environmental challenges have been systematically assessed in a number of official reports including the State of the Environment Report (1998, 2002 and 2005) and Malta's National Report to the World Summit on Sustainable Development (2002).On the basis of these reports and following an extensive consultation proce ss in connection with the drawing up of this Strategy, the following environmental challenges facing Malta were identified: Ã¢â¬ ¢ Air quality and climate change Ã¢â¬ ¢ Energy-efficiency and renewable energy resources Ã¢â¬ ¢ Biodiversity Ã¢â¬ ¢ Freshwater Ã¢â¬ ¢ Wastes Ã¢â¬ ¢ Marine and coastal environment Ã¢â¬ ¢ Land use Ã¢â¬ ¢ Transport Ã¢â¬ ¢ Natural and technological risks Ã¢â¬ ¢ Leisure and the environment 3. 1. 2 Air Quality and Climate Change The quality of MaltaÃ¢â¬â¢s air should be completely safe for human health and able to support biodiversity. In addition, human activities should have the smallest possible impact on climate and on global life-supporting systems (including the ozone layer). The significant improvement in data availability since 1998 has allowed a thorough quantitative assessment of air quality over the Maltese Islands.Parallel work on determining emissions, the drawing up of a greenhouse gas inventory, as well as observation of transboundary pollution, have provided a detailed identification of sources and their relative importance, providing a sound information base for policy. 15 Electricity generation and transport are the major contributors to air pollution in Malta. In recent years, greenhouse gas emissions have increased due to the increased demand for electrical energy and the growth in private car ownership. This has resulted in atmospheric pollution by particulates, ozone, sulphur oxides, nitrogen oxides, and volatile organic compounds including benzene and lead.A shift to better-quality and lower-sulphur fuels was made in 2004 and leaded petrol was phased out in January 2003. Results from the national air monitoring programme indicate that the two main air pollutants of concern are particulate matter and ozone, while nitrogen oxides and sulphur dioxide also pose challenges. The main anthropogenic sources of particulate matter are transport and electricity generation, as well as quarrying and construction activ ities. As a user of ozonedepleting substances (ODSs), Malta also contributes to dispersion in the environment of these substances. The challenge in this area is to attain EU air quality standards while ensuring efficient production and use of energy, as well as a cost effective transport system.Measures designed to encourage energy end-use efficiency, to use renewable sources of energy and to restrict overall vehicle use, including the provision of a high-quality public transport as well as traffic management measures, will be conducive towards this end. Furthermore, support for the use of alternative fuels such as biodiesel should be continued. Government has already introduced financial incentives to promote biofuels, through the exemption from excise duty of the biomass content in biodiesel.. The biodiesel produced in Malta originates from waste cooking oil, and waste collection programmes have been established. Targets for the use of biofuels in road transport have also been set . A balance needs to be found between the costs of introducing alternative fuels and the benefits of reduction in use of conventional fuels. Landfills have been a source of air pollution for many years.The rehabilitation of old landfills and the proper engineering of new ones are expected to resolve the negative impacts associated with past operating practices of MaltaÃ¢â¬â¢s landfills. Mitigation and adaptation issues and the political and economic aspects of climate change need to be properly addressed as these involve significant economic costs and may impact heavily on MaltaÃ¢â¬â¢s development. Adaptation to rising global surface temperatures and the anticipated consequential rise in sea level need to feature in future development strategies. In particular, future development strategies should consider the impacts of climate change on coastal areas in terms of risks to settlements and human safety, commercial activities and habitats. 16 Promote the adoption of new technologi es, including mandating use of catalytic converters, to affect Ã¢â¬ ¢ Take steps to reduce greenhouse gas emissions through an energy policy which seeks to promote Ã¢â¬ ¢ Ã¢â¬ ¢ Ã¢â¬ ¢ Ã¢â¬ ¢ Ã¢â¬ ¢ Ã¢â¬ ¢ Ã¢â¬ ¢ Ã¢â¬ ¢ environmental protection, competitiveness and security of supplies, and as a result decouple the rate of growth of energy demand from economic growth. Take remedial action to control emissions of air pollutants (ambient levels of particulate matter, sulphur dioxide, carbon monoxide, benzene, lead, ozone, heavy metals and nitrogen oxides) and achieve compliance with European standards. Encourage people to make use of public transport or to adopt car-pooling practices in order to reduce vehicle emissions. Introduce smaller buses on certain public transport routes.Require the construction industry to reduce generation of fine dust particles. Continue to monitor landfills for air pollution and take remedial action as required. Continue to monitor transboundary p ollution and take remedial action as required. Develop a hazard map for coastal areas prone to erosion and flooding. Take action to reduce Malta's vulnerability to Climate Change. significant cut-backs in vehicle emissions. Main strategic directions with regard to air quality and climate change: 3. 1. 3 Energy-efficiency and Renewable Energy Resources. Energy efficiency and the use of renewable energy sources (RES) can be economically and environmentally advantageous.RES are not extensively used in Malta, although they may have immediate local application. Solar water heating could offset a substantial proportion of annual generation of electricity, avoiding emissions of CO2. Generation of electricity using photovoltaics (PV) is currently limited to a small number of specialised applications. The use of photovoltaics will, in practice, be determined by economic factors (the cost of panels and associated equipment), the extent to which these systems can be connected to the electricit y grid, and the associated feed-in tariff established, including any support measures for renewable electricity. Various incentives and support measures could speed up market penetration.Market forces on their own may not spur the use of RES, and government intervention in the form of subsidies or other incentives is required to encourage investors to develop these sources of energy and to encourage consumers to use them. It is important, however, to ensure that the use of RES does not pose unduly high fiscal burdens. In 2005, the Government of Malta introduced a series of measures to support electricity generation from RES. These include financial incentives in the form of grants on the capital costs of photovoltaic installations and micro-wind generation systems by domestic households. A net metering arrangement and purchase by Enemalta at established tariffs of excess electricity generated from small-scale PV systems have also been introduced.In addition, grants on the capital co st of solar thermal water heaters installed by domestic consumers and other financial incentives related to meter installation charges for new domestic consumers installing such systems have been established. The Government has also published a draft Renewable Energy Policy for Malta, with the three key objectives of promoting RES, improving the quality of life and providing support facilities and services in a holistic manner. Further reductions in CO2 emissions are likely to be attained through the construction of energyefficient buildings and the use of small combined heat and power plants by industry, the introduction of energy-efficient electric motors and drives, the proper dimensioning of airconditioning units and attendant ducting, and further use of energy-saving lamps.Emissions could also be reduced through improvements in electricity generation and use, as discussed in the previous section. Such reductions could also be attained through fuel pricing as part of an energy 1 7 policy, and through making available alternative sources such as Biodiesel, Liquid Petroleum Gas (LPG) and Compressed Natural Gas (CNG). The use of energy from animal waste and oil waste is also being studied and reviewed by Government. Efficiency in government electricity usage should be very visible so as to encourage private users to change their own behaviour with regard to electricity usage, as well as to curb light pollution. Such visibility includes more efficient street lighting and luminous devices used in road safety signs.Floodlighting of public buildings could also be reduced late at night. Government departments should adopt energy-efficient lighting and air-conditioning in order to lead by example. Energy-saving pilot projects by the Housing Authority should be encouraged. Main strategic directions with regard to energy-saving and renewable resources Ã¢â¬ ¢ Adopt a national energy policy that seeks to improve efficiency in electricity generation and to promote a sec ure, competitively priced, and environmentally sound energy supply, Ã¢â¬ ¢ Put in place an integrated approach, supported by a nationwide educational campaign, to promote energy efficiency and conservation by users. Carry out an energy audit of street lighting and propose measures to promote efficiency in lighting Ã¢â¬ ¢ Step up funding for research to improve knowledge on local materials and conditions in building for energy efficiency and in the use of renewable energy sources Ã¢â¬ ¢ Adopt building regulations that would include design requirements relating to thermal efficiency. Ã¢â¬ ¢ Direct more development permit applicants to adopt energy efficiency measures. Ã¢â¬ ¢ Promote the introduction and use of renewable energy sources through support mechanisms and other appropriate measures. Ã¢â¬ ¢ Promote energy audits and energy-efficiency improvements in commercial and industrial establishments. Heighten water conservation methods to reduce dependency on reverse osmosis plan ts. 3. 1. 4 Freshwater Water in the Maltese Islands remains a scarce and basic resource and is under intense pressure from competing users. While traditional problems associated with the lack of availability of supply have been addressed mainly though significant investment in desalination plants, this has been achieved at a high cost. Furthermore, new challenges emerge as more information becomes available from studies carried out on environmental impacts. It is likely that modern technological progress will chart the way towards higher levels of efficiency in the use of water resources.The fair allocation of water resources is considered to be a major priority that needs to be addressed throughout the decision-making process. Water demand and supply need to be managed on a geographical basis, especially in areas where second class water requirements take precedence. The integrated management of water resources at water catchment district level is considered to be crucial. Availabl e water resources should be fairly allocated to the different stakeholders while taking into account sectoral requirements in terms of quality and quantity. Such an exercise would require a sound regulatory system and a clear policy, backed by legislation, that sets priorities for water use and lays the foundations for the sustainable management of water resources.In this context, Malta will have to eliminate wasteful practices and move towards the conjunctive use of groundwater with other non-conventional sources such as desalination, treated sewage effluent and stormwater. StakeholdersÃ¢â¬â¢ requirements, the relative supply costs and the benefits accrued, as well as the value of the externalities generated by the use of water, need to be carefully assessed. 18 The quality and integrity of groundwater bodies in the Maltese Islands are currently at risk mainly from over-exploitation (including uncontrolled private abstraction of groundwater), leading to increased salinity, and fr om contamination by excess nitrates (mainly from agriculture) and other pollutants.Information on and awareness of the importance of groundwater and the risks posed to its integrity by over-exploitation and pollution need to be more widely disseminated. The Ã¢â¬Ëpolluter pays principleÃ¢â¬â¢, as well as the EU Environmental Liability Directive provisions, need to be more extensively used and enforced. Investment in stormwater management and flood relief are key priorities for the Maltese Islands. The installation of stormwater catchment facilities will allow this source of freshwater to be utilised for a wide variety of purposes, reducing the strain on the current freshwater resources. Furthermore, road and land development have often failed to recognise the importance of maintaining natural aquifer recharge.Legislative changes introduced in 2000 with the establishment of the Malta Resources Authority involved the separation of the regulatory and operational responsibilities pre viously carried out by the Water Services Corporation. This has led to a clear distinction of regulatory and operational roles between the regulator and the utility agency, thus promoting an improvement in the level of services provided, to the consumers as well as better regulation of the sector. Drinking water quality standards have improved during the past three years as a result of infrastructural improvements which allow a more uniform blending of groundwater with desalinated water throughout the Maltese Islands.Further improvement is foreseen as the Water Services Corporation plans to upgrade its desalination facilities in an endeavour to improve product quality and energy efficiency. The introduction of a better-regulated system for groundwater abstraction, together with enforcement of environmental measures to improve the qualitative standards of groundwater supplies, is also envisaged. In recent years, the Water Services Corporation has also stepped up its water conservatio n efforts and has reduced losses from the distribution network. Better use of harvested rainwater and treated sewage effluent is envisaged in the coming years, while further measures and incentives to store stormwater run-off in urban/semi-urban areas will be considered.Potable water quality needs to be improved in order to reach EU standards and the present plans of the Water Services Corporation and of the Malta Resources Authority to achieve this aim need to be fully implemented in a sustainable manner. Through EU Structural Funds, measures and projects are underway to improve drinking water quality. At the same time, conservation measures related to water produced through sewage treatment, controlled abstraction of groundwater, the better use of cisterns and wells, and the cleaning of existing dams and building of new ones in strategic locations need to be encouraged through the enforcement of existing legislation, a more effective consumer education programmes and, possibly, ec onomic incentives and disincentives. Measures to store rainwater, including the use of disused quarries, need to be explored.Valley beds need to be cleared from unauthorised interventions in order to allow for the safe collection of water; however, the ecological value of valleys must be recognised in addition to their water transport function, and the haphazard clearing of valleys should be prohibited. As well as supplying potable water for human use, freshwater also sustains a variety of perennial springs and small water bodies which, in turn, support a variety of species. Such freshwater ecosystems are extremely threatened by the combined effects of habitat loss and by the lack of water availability, resulting from anthropogenic activities and recurring episodes of drought.These freshwater habitats need to be very carefully managed and all efforts should be made to safeguard them before they are completely lost. To this end, the importance of such measures will be 19 reflected in the implementation of the Water Catchment Management Plan under the national legislation transposing the Water Framework Directive. Around 14. 3Mm3/year of treated sewage effluent are expected to be available for re-use in Malta and Gozo during the next five years. As a signatory to the Barcelona Convention, Malta is committed to treat all wastewater before discharging at sea, and is thus planning to set up three new sewage treatment plants: one in Gozo and two in Malta.The treatment plant in Gozo and that in the north of Malta are expected to be operational by 2008. Once the projected sewage treatment plants are operational, the country should have significant quantities of second-class water. While not suitable for human consumption, this water may be suitable for other purposes. Other uses should be explored, especially for those sectors and activities with heavy water consumption. In this regard, projects that require large quantities of water to sustain them need to be careful ly assessed for their impact on the water supply. Since sewage is increasingly being seen as a water resource, it must also be protected against contamination from hazardous industrial and other effluents.Main strategic directions with regard to freshwater: Ã¢â¬ ¢ Adopt a policy with the aim of ensuring the utilisation of the nationÃ¢â¬â¢s water resources in a manner that is environmentally and economically sustainable. Ã¢â¬ ¢ Allow the natural biodiversity of surface water eco-systems to be sustained and to flourish, and achieve good ecological status for inland surface waters by 2015 in line with the Water Framework Directive. Ã¢â¬ ¢ Ensure a reliable and good-quality supply of potable water in accordance with international water quality standards. Ã¢â¬ ¢ Reduce and prevent further pollution of waters with the aim of achieving good status of all water bodies by 2015 in line with the Water Framework Directive. Establish and operate comprehensive monitoring networks for all wa ter bodies in the Maltese Islands in order to reliably assess the achievement of Ã¢â¬Ëgood statusÃ¢â¬â¢ objectives in these bodies. Ã¢â¬ ¢ Encourage initiatives for the adoption of water efficiency and conservation measures. Ã¢â¬ ¢ Introduce effective catchment management and design roads so as to maximise the channelling of water towards reservoirs. Ã¢â¬ ¢ Improve public awareness on the environmental, social and economic value of water. Ã¢â¬ ¢ Strengthen and enforce regulatory measures with regard to illegal abstraction. Ã¢â¬ ¢ Encourage the recycling of non-potable sources of water for secondary use. Ã¢â¬ ¢ Assess projects that require large quantities of water in order to ascertain that they do not unduly create water supply shortages. Optimise the use of second-class water particularly in those sectors that make heavy use of water. 3. 1. 5 Biodiversity Though small in size, the Maltese Islands and their territorial waters support a variety of habitats and significant biodiversity which are still not adequately recognised as an environmental asset to be protected and sustained. Loss of biodiversity, i. e. the irreversible loss of species and ecosystems, can have very damaging effects on various aspects of a nationÃ¢â¬â¢s development. A number of endemic and sub-endemic species are not only of scientific importance but are also of evolutionary and biogeographical interest, being relics of past Mediterranean flora and fauna.Over the years, not enough commitment has been shown to protect such biodiversity, leading to rapid habitat loss and uncontrolled exploitation of wildlife. This has meant that unique and important habitats such as wetlands, sand dunes and woodlands have disappeared or are on the verge of disappearing. Furthermore, some elements of MaltaÃ¢â¬â¢s biodiversity have a wider regional and global importance, and as such are protected under international legislation. 20 Extinction and loss of species has been documented since 1998 by the State of the Environment Reports. In spite of the introduction of substantial legal protection for important habitats during the last 15 years, effective protection has lagged behind.Effective conservation requires the allocation of financial, physical and human resources to enable management, including short- and long-term monitoring. Moreover, in situ and ex situ conservation is urgently required (e. g. propagation, habitat restoration, containment, control or eradication of invasive alien species and reintroduction of indigenous species). In spite of efforts to protect and manage indigenous biodiversity, most threatened species and the majority of endemic species, remain under threat from human-mediated activities (such as overexploitation, illegal capture and killing, land development and introduction of alien species) and from the consequences of such activities such as loss and degradation of habitats, pollution, disruption of food webs, erosion and eutrophication) that l ead to undesirable changes in ecosystems. The dwindling areas of garigue, sand dunes and cliff faces are some examples of habitats that are endangered. Due to the state of such habitats, even certain recreational activities, such off-roading, camping and abseiling, need to be better regulated. The state of knowledge of local biota is still poor and resources for the implementation and enforcement of existing regulations have still not reached the required levels. The biodiversity monitoring programme is still rudimentary and under-funded.Exploitation, whether illegal or unregulated, of a number of wildlife species and communities is still ongoing (and, in some cases, possibly increasing), mainly through hunting, trapping and fishing. The currently available data on such activities are not sufficient and not sufficiently reliable to permit a thorough assessment of the impact of such exploitation on the local biodiversity. This issue should be addressed as an immediate priority. Land reclamation in sensitive ecological areas should be prohibited and the re-use of abandoned fields encouraged. This needs to be linked to the promotion of land stewardship, establishment of ecological corridors and organic farming. The uncontrolled introduction of alien species into local eco-systems continues to be of serious concern.An increasing number of such species are establishing themselves in the wild, with adverse effects on the local eco-systems. It is widely documented globally that human-mediated activities, namely trade and tourism, facilitate the introduction and transfer of such species into new environments. Once alien species are introduced, either deliberately or accidentally, into the environment, they can establish themselves. In certain cases, alien species start to compete with native species, in which case they become invasive and could become the dominant species. Invasive alien species involve and affect a wide range of social, ecological and economic activi ties and can also affect public health.To prevent these impacts, a strategy to control existent alien species and to prevent the further introduction of alien invasive species, should be drawn up. Genetically modified organisms (GMOs) can be considered as alien species and the regulation of GMOs should be included in any policy and/or legislation on alien species. MaltaÃ¢â¬â¢s official policy is that applications to deliberately release or place on the market GMOs are assessed and evaluated on a case-by-case basis and by means of a thorough scientific assessment. Support should be given to research and development to predict and prevent invasive behaviour of alien species and GMOs before they are released into the environment.The Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety should be ratified and implemented in order to control transboundary movements of GMOs with the aim of providing a comprehensive and holistic approach to the conservation of biological diversity, the sustainable use of natu ral resources and the fair and equitable sharing of benefits deriving from the use of genetic resources. 21 In order to comply with the EU nature protection acquis, Malta has designated an extensive network of Special Areas of Conservation, of which 31 are of international importance and which amount to a respectable 12. 5 per cent of the national territory in terms of land area. The total area of protected terrestrial habitat on the Maltese Islands relative to the total surface area compares favourably to the EU average.Additional efforts should now be made so that rare or scientifically important eco-systems not yet protected, as well as representative examples of more widespread habitats such as marine eco-systems, are afforded legal protection. Natural areas which are declared protected need to be monitored and managed in accordance with adopted management plans, the more so since this is also a legal obligation. Management plans have already been adopted for some of the sites, and others are in the pipeline. Monitoring work has been undertaken and policy provisions are being drawn up to ensure that the EU Directives are adhered to. Nonetheless, the process of agreeing on management plans for protected areas will have to be significantly accelerated in order to meet Malta's national and international obligations.A commendable dev
Monday, July 29, 2019
The four most significant concepts learn in HRM 6603 - Research Paper Example Under this situation it is important to introduce a legal framework to bind the activities of the employees within the organization and to increase their productivity in work. Feedbacks and evaluation of performance from time to time is very essential to keep the human resources on their toes. The compensation of the employee reflects his value to an organization and hence this is another aspect within the jurisdiction of the human resource management. The paper highlights these four concepts, strategic HRM, Performance management system, legal framework and compensation. Strategic HRM Strategic Human Resource Management (SHRM) can be recognized as one of the most empowering and significant ideas to have emerged in the trade management field for the last quarter of the century. Policy makers of state levels have long been arguing about the thought regarding conceptualizing promotion of Ã¢â¬Å"high performance workplacesÃ¢â¬ and Ã¢â¬Å"human capital managementÃ¢â¬ . (Greame, Stor ey, Billsberry, 2005, pp.1-2). SHRM can be regarded as a process of linking human resources with strategic aims in a bid to substantially perk up business- related performance and grow a unique organizational culture that initiates innovation, flexibility and competitive gains. SHRM provides path to building the basis of a long term strategic advantage by creation of effective organizational skill structures and mechanisms, culture, value proposition of the available human resources, a proper communication strategy and preparing an efficient team trained for ups and downs which include mergers and acquisitions. In a more descriptive and theoretical light, strategic management is like a cycle wherein various activities are constantly taking place and are dependent upon one another. This cycle can be sub categorized into five steps: 1. Goals and mission: The first step of a strategic management model initiates with senior managers of an organization evaluating their current position i n relation to the current missions and goals of the organization. Mission explains the values and aspirations of the organization; it is the organizationÃ¢â¬â¢s main motive and indicates the future directions of the senior management levels. Goals are the desired end results sought through the outcome of the operating methods of the organization and are described mainly in short- run perspectives (Bratton, n.d., pp.40-41).Ã Ã Ã Ã 2. Analysis of environment: It looks at the internal strengths and weaknesses of the organization and looks for external threats and opportunities. The most crucial factors to an organizationÃ¢â¬â¢s future is referred to as strategic factorsÃ summarized by the acronym SWOT-Strength, Weakness, Opportunities and Threats (Bratton, n.d., p.40) 3. Formulation of strategy: This involves evaluation of the interaction between strategic factors and formulating strategic choices to lead the managers to achieve organizational goals (Bratton, n.d., p.41 ). 4. Strategy implementation: This area of activity focuses on techniques implemented by the managers to execute their strategies. It mainly deals with the organizational formation, leadership styles, information-control systems and human resource management, leadership being the most difficult part of implementation (Bratton, n.d., p.41). 5. Evaluation of the implemented strategy: This activity helps determine the extent of real performance and change matching the desired
Sunday, July 28, 2019
Self reflection - Coursework Example Although motivational theories were indicated not to be the only factors influencing employee productivity and quality of work, one believes that it is a crucial factor to develop and promote behavioral patterns that are consistent with the attainment of goals. Concurrently, to motivate people towards excellent performance is the primary task of leaders. To do that, the leader needs to understand and recognize what motivates people. The emergence of virtual teams, in On Line, Real Time tutorial, came as a necessary spin-off from interactions that ensue from electronic networks. Concurrently, the concepts of leadership have adapted competencies catering to global virtual teams. One learned that the theoretical framework for virtual encompasses permeable boundaries and interfaces, project teams evolving rapidly in its inception to dissolution as needs in the group members change, and people with diverse qualifications and skills are tapped across the spheres of space, culture and time. For the purpose of the tutorial, identification of the three most effective leadership qualities confirm its ability to reach a consensus and learn on leadership qualities, as required. 2. In writing an effective business report from a case study what are the main decisions you have to make? An effective business report from a case study must be discerning and objective in the treatment of facts of the case. As cited from Seperich, Woolverton, Beierlein and Hahn (1996) entitled Cases in Agribusiness Management, the main elements that must be contained in an effective business report are as follows: executive summary, problem statement, alternative courses of action, conclusion and implementation or plan of action (Seperich, et.al, 1996, pars. 19 Ã¢â¬â 23). In this regard, the writer of the report must make the following main decisions: Ã¢â¬Å"identify problems, determine corporate goals, define relevant alternatives, and develop plans to implement decisionsÃ¢â¬ ¦to defend the l ogic of your analysis and conclusionsÃ¢â¬ (Seperich, et.al, 1996, last par.). 2 (b). Research the various layouts and designs for an effective Business or Management report and itemize and discuss the various sections you feel would be needed in an effective report? The layouts and designs of business or management reports depend upon the purposes of the report. For financial reports, for example, an effective layout should be simple, concise but comprehensive enough to accurately inform the users of the financial condition of the organization being evaluated. In this regard, the following financial reports are required to be prepared: Income Statement, Balance Sheet, Cash Flow Statement, Auditor's Report, and Graphs and Charts, as required. Most of these have been learned from the course modules. Other organizational and management report are presented in terms of corporate profiles or annual reports which are basically a combination of narrative and quantitative in nature and c ontains the elements: time, details, percentages, deviations or growth rate changes, as needed. Performance or Year in Review Reports must contain: Significant Events, Analysis / Significant Trends, Profile of Products and Services, New Patents/Research, and Stock Analysis (Bear, 2011). For senior managementsÃ¢â¬â¢ perusal, the management report must always contain an executive summary. According to Kotler (1980), an executive summary is designed to Ã¢â¬Å"permit higher management to grasp quickly the major thrust of each plan and then read
Saturday, July 27, 2019
Organisational Politics - Dissertation Example In the highly competitive environment, where every individual is concerned about job security, pursuance of self-interest has taken dominance. Managers engage in enhancing their abilities and capabilities to use power, and participate in political activities. In the process, they attempt to exercise coercion and control over their subordinates. This naturally gives rise to resistance which takes the shape of conflicts. However, according to Max Weber, organizations can achieve the coordination necessary for rational, logical and calculable action only through impersonal coercion and discipline of subordinates and clients (McNeill, 1978, p65). Pfeffer (1992, p10) contends that power and influence are social realities and in trying to ignore them, organizations lose a chance to understand these critical social processes and to train managers to cope with them. However, power has been associated with such a negative interpretation that people keep away from it for fear of getting a bad name. Politics in general is also related to negative outcomes; politics is considered to be inherently non-rational and subject to power interactions between diverse interests (Kinicki, 2008) but Vigoda (2000, p1) found weak negative relationship between perception of organizational politics and employeesÃ¢â¬â¢ performance. ... Allen et al (1978, p78) emphasize that managers must know of the political processes and elaborate on the proactive and reactive behavior of the managers. Lee (1987, p316) identifies sources of power as coalition, expertise, information, rewards, emotional ties, authority and coercion while Varman and Bhatnagar add formal authority, rules and regulations, knowledge and information, counter organizations and informal organizations. However, a personÃ¢â¬â¢s actual power is a function of the sources, importance and scarcity of the power available to them (Lee, 1987, p317). Farrell and Peterson (1982, p403) examine individual political behavior within an organization, which they feel has been neglected. Fleming and Spicer (2008, p302) propose that power and resistance in an organization are intertwined. Bureaucratic power is used to exercise control and this gives rise to conflicts in the organization. Thompson (1960, p390) discusses the different forms and sources of organizational co nflicts while Rubenstein (1996) differentiates between conflict management, conflict resolution and conflict settlement. To resolve conflicts power and politics are the facilitators. Most of the literature reviewed here suggests that people are rational and active in pursuit of their goals. They need to influence, they need to manipulate to accomplish goals. This would imply that using tact and manipulation is acceptable as it helps further the interest of the individual as well as of the organization. However, they are seldom conscious of the repercussions of their actions. Imbalance of power can lead to several undesirable consequences such as workplace bullying, harassment and victimization. Several authors such as
Friday, July 26, 2019
International Legal Aspects of Iraq's Sustainable Development - Dissertation Example On another note, decades of stagnation and sanctions in the Saddam regime meant that further oil and gas exploration was not possible. In addition to IraqÃ¢â¬â¢s proven reserves of oil and gas, it is expected that another 45 billion to 100 billion barrels of crude oil remain unexplored1. On another note, it is ironic that for the fiscal years 2009 and 2010, IraqÃ¢â¬â¢s central government had to face a fiscal deficit even though there are vast oil and gas reserves in the countryÃ¢â¬â¢s territory. The lack of effective frameworks to explore and exploit the oil and gas resources has led the Iraqi nation to a miserable state such that the IraqiÃ¢â¬â¢s long term sustainable development is highly impaired. This chapter will look into various forms of international petroleum agreements to observe how they have been implemented throughout the world and in IraqÃ¢â¬â¢s case. Given the fact that Iraq changed regimes, the international petroleum agreements binding it internationally al so changed. ... chapter will also look into how political factors, both external an internal, tend to affect petroleum agreements, especially, in the context of the friction between the Kurdistan Regional Government and the federal Iraqi government. This chapter will then explore the environmental clauses of Iraqi petroleum agreements and ascertain its bearing on community development and economic development targets. Lastly, the chapter will look into the various legal challenges that sustainable development of oil and gas resources face in Iraq at the present. Evolution of International Petroleum Agreements International petroleum agreements (IPA) have evolved over time as the relationship between suppliers and producers has transformed through its highs and lows. In the modern day, IPAs are well established tools of business and a narrow range of IPAs tends to provide for most business arrangements between petroleum producers and suppliers. The various legal arrangements utilised under internatio nal law and IPA to benefit the petroleum producer and supplier are being discussed in order to evaluate what kinds of legal arrangements are more sustainable than others. This will further be applied in IraqÃ¢â¬â¢s case to decipher how Saddam era petroleum agreements tend to differ from modern oil and gas contracts, especially with reference to sustainability and sustainable development for the people of Iraq. Concession Agreements Since most nation states tend to assume control of any mineral resources discovered in their territory, it is a direct consequence that they tend to represent any such interests under international law. The discovery of oil over the globe in the late nineteenth century and early twentieth century saw a number of nation states trying to conjure legal arrangements to
Thursday, July 25, 2019
Vizir Case Analysis - Article Example Proctor and Gamble is aware that Vizir is only recognized as a somewhat mediocre product, so the question of whether it might be profitable in Europe remains. However, if managed and advertised well, Vizir does show some promise of success. 2. Having used the tools described above, identify the key issues that the company should focus on - relate it to the reading in the Grant text for that week. Tell the reader why those are the root issues and not just symptoms of something deeper. The key issues that the company will need to focus on are the items necessary for success in Europe. This includes marketing strategies as well as overall management skills. Advertising will be key, as it always is, to bring the new product to light across Europe. Effective advertising should be able to introduce Vizir into the market successfully. 3. Find and cite three benchmark companies that face similar issues or counterpoint issues TODAY. Do not just look for companies with identical issues. If the issue you identified was "inadequate capitalization," find other companies with capitalization problems - you should not look for other companies in the same industry that had other issues. Focus on the issues, not the company or the industry.
Changes in US higher education - Dissertation Example This essay discusses a goal of higher education that is for students to be in an environment where they can focus on their academic success. Pressure has been placed on many universities to ensure that all students complete their degree. The growing importance of degree completion has led to the increased need for leaders to ensure that the mission and goals of their institutions are aligned with students completing their education. Within universities, departments such as athletics are examining their role in providing student athletes with opportunities for full participation in the college experience. Leaders within the university are challenged to provide a student athlete with an environment where they focus on their academic success. Other challenges include ensuring institutional practices and policies are not being compromised for the sake of athletic programs and to ensure student athletes are being fully engaged through the integration within their campus academic communiti es. Some of the challenges that leaders face in higher education today are law, distance learning, response to change, gender, diversity and retention. The implementation of change in higher education can be quite costly and initiate faculty and personnel changes within the pedgological construct and dynamic of the university. This paper will address the challenges leaders face in organizing a successful preparation to these dynamics. However, prior to dealing more on this issue, the essential background of some of the problems in US higher education shall be discussed first. Background of some of the problems in US higher education In the United States, higher education is under local government control and capitalism, and a gateway to transform an individual into a middle-class (Eckel and King, 2004). In this regard, the US higher education has become a reflection of American character which primarily depicts independence, suspicion of government, ambition, inclusiveness and compe titions (Eckel and King, 2004). This makes US higher education so complex and diverse that in one way or another it is difficult to describe standard practice for all those exercised in the states. The US higher education is subdivided into three different institutions which includes four-year, two-year and less than two-year courses which can be public, private and not-for-profit, and private and for profit. Considering that the US higher education is not controlled by the federal government, each of the 50 states is therefore responsible for its local management and control on higher education. This resulted to the fact that there is a significant variation in the degree of control for higher education from state to state (Eckel and King, 2004). As a result, there is variation of policies from different states regarding the establishment and management and control of colleges and universities. These variations although would not be so much of an issue at some point, but have signi ficant impacts on the US higher education in the future. This could be explained further through the following situations. Although higher education remains to be at the third priority of the most states in the US in the budget allocation, it is also the first priority to undergo budget cut especially in bad economic times and fall of state tax revenue (Eckel and King, 2004). This is a corresponding problem in higher education for having the full potential to organize itself and achieve substantial amount of profit for its self provision. Today, colleges and universities in the US are trying to expand their revenue stream through different strategies including online education system, niche-oriented degree and non-degree academic programs, expansion of research capacities, engagement in licensing and sponsorship agreement, and obtaining auxiliary enterprises (Eckel and King, 2004). These strategies could prove as substantial evidences that the US higher education is highly commercia lized and has become intended for profit-making activity.
Wednesday, July 24, 2019
E-Commerce systems - Essay Example Each functional area is supported by the information system. Information system in which computer technology is used called Computer based information system. Some are being mentioned below: Information technology is used as a synonym of computer networks and computers. Information technology refers to the application of computer programs and telecommunication equipments that is done to pile up, manipulate, retrieve and convey data. According to Alter (2012) information technology is obliging for the improvement of internal processes, reduce cost, minimize waste, and decrease extra activities and increase development of product. Information technology provides support in marketing and selling processes. With the increasing use of internet and online activities, a new form of has emerged in the recent years. This is termed as online business or ebusiness or E-commerce business. E-business and e-commerce is used as synonym of each other, their distinction can be seen through the detailed study. E-commerce is considered a sub set of E-business. E-business is the usage of technologies in order to improve different business processes (Combe, 2012). E-business includes the management of internal and external processes for instance internal processes include administration, financial and human resource systems; and external processes include customer relationship, supply of services and goods, and marketing and sale activities. The utilization of internet, intranet and extranet is done through e-business for the empowerment of commercial processes (Ashrut, 2012). Combe (2012) stated that through Information technological development (formation of World Wide Web, hypertext transfer protocol and text mark language) consumers and businesses both are having several benefits such as the demand of businesses especially e-businesses is increasing rapidly. Through
Tuesday, July 23, 2019
Marketing News Journal #2 - Essay Example Who would not like to arrive in a store and not have to queue to make orders and then have to wait in the same queue to pick up the order after a hard day of work or study. I know I would be thrilled to arrive and have my order ready to go. This is what Taco BellÃ¢â¬â¢s new order ahead app is all about. Customers download the app and when they want food from Taco Bell, they simply make their orders in their nearest chain store and go pick it up. In order to avoid getting cold food or having to wait for long before the food is prepared, the app allows the customer to inform the store as they arrive in order to have their order prepared and ready to go. The other good news is that the customer does not even have to leave their car to go pick up their order, it is brought to them. This is another positive addition in their customer service and it is a welcome relief to many. Those are not the only good news concerning the app, here is the better news. The app provides more food option on their menu that is not present in the physical store menu. This will provide a wide range of selection of the food, making special order of what is to be increased, reduced or completely eliminated from the menu. Those who are keen on their calorie intake are also mot left behind as they have a calorie counter on each food order and hence one can be able to monitor their calorie intake. This Taco Bell app is therefore welcome by even nutritionists and medical health professionals that have been trying to get the American people to reduce their calorie intake and eat healthier foods to reduce the high rate if obesity in the nation. People will be able to follow this and try eating healthy in the future as long as they continue making their order online. Taco Bell serves Mexican food of tacos and burritos which is a way to promote the Mexican culture in the
Monday, July 22, 2019
Public Safety and Privacy Essay Abstract Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã After the terrorist attacks of 9/11, the U.S. constantly tries to find the correct balance between privacy and public safety. Connecticut Department of Public Safety v. John Doe has revealed the important implications of public safety towards privacy in the United States. Ã Ã Introduction Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã The terrorist acts of 9/11 have revealed serious inconsistencies between public safety and privacy in the legal system of the United States. Numerous laws, legal norms, and Supreme Court decisions have only increased the growing tension between the two notions of public safety and privacy. The natural stateÃ¢â¬â¢s desire to protect its citizens from terrorist threats has evidently neglected the importance of stable balance between public safety and privacy. As a result, the state cannot effectively promote both legal values and has to sacrifice one legal notion for the sake of protecting the other. Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Connecticut v. Doe: summary of the case Among other things, ConnecticutÃ¢â¬â¢s Ã¢â¬ËMeganÃ¢â¬â¢s LawÃ¢â¬â¢ requires persons convicted of sexual offenses to register with the Department of Public Safety (DPS) upon their release into the community, and requires DPS to post a sex offender registry containing registrantÃ¢â¬â¢s names, addresses, photographs, and descriptions on an Internet website and to make the registry available to the public in certain state offices. (Supreme Court of the United States, 2002) In the case of Connecticut Department of Public Safety v. Doe, the Supreme Court of the United States has actually overturned the orders of the lower district courts, which prescribed Connecticut Department of Public Safety to shut down its official website, which presented the visitors with the information about convicted sex offenders, and to prevent public access to printed information about sex offenders. The lower courts concluded that spreading information about sex offenders and making it public initially implicated the liberty interests of those who could become potential registrants of the discussed website (Supreme Court of the United States, 2002). Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Supreme Court of the United States has completely disagreed with the previous decisions of the lower courts. John Doe was trying to defend his position by stating that he was not dangerous during the time when he was registered at the website. However, the Supreme Court has come to conclusion that regardless the danger sex offenders actually presented, they had to be registered. Objectively, it does not matter whether the sex offender is dangerous or not. ConnecticutÃ¢â¬â¢s Ã¢â¬Å"MeganÃ¢â¬â¢s LawÃ¢â¬ does not refer to any particular level of danger, according to which sex offenders should or should not be registered at ConnecticutÃ¢â¬â¢s DPS website. It was sufficient for the U.S. Supreme Court to state that sex offenders were given an opportunity to contest their guilt during the sex offense court proceedings. Regardless the danger sex offenders represent, they must be registered at Connecticut DPS website, and to make their personal information publicly accessible. Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Connecticut v. Doe: implications Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã The discussed case has generated acute public response. Beyond that, the case has carried profound implications for the social policies in the public safety area in the United States. To start with, Ã¢â¬Å"ConnecticutÃ¢â¬â¢s MeganÃ¢â¬â¢s Law applies, with a few exceptions, to persons convicted after October 1, 1988 of criminal offenses against a minor, violent and nonviolent sexual offenses, and felonies committed for a sexual purposeÃ¢â¬ (Brooks, 1996). When sex offenders are released and enter the community, they are obliged to register with the sex offendersÃ¢â¬â¢ informational registry developed by Connecticut Department of Public Safety. Certainly, this is an effective measure of providing the community with the objective information its potential dangerous members. Simultaneously, sex offenders are not deprived of traditional personal and privacy rights. As a result, ConnecticutÃ¢â¬â¢s MeganÃ¢â¬â¢s Law risks breaking the discussed privacy rights of those who has already been convicted and released from jail. Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã With the desire to promote public safety, the U.S. has proved that such cannot exist in line with the privacy rights of those who can easily breach public safety again. Connecticut v. Doe has pushed the importance of public safety to the foreground, making it more important than privacy rights of sex offenders. The case has directly implied that social policies in the area of public safety require better focus on privacy rights. It is interesting to note, that in his justification of the Supreme CourtÃ¢â¬â¢s decision, Justice Scalia compared ConnecticutÃ¢â¬â¢s MeganÃ¢â¬â¢s Law with the law which prohibited everyone under age of 16 to drive a motor vehicle: Ã¢â¬Å"that is why, [Ã¢â¬ ¦] a convicted sex offender has no more right to additional Ã¢â¬ËprocessÃ¢â¬â¢ enabling him to establish that he is not dangerous than a 15-year-old has a right to Ã¢â¬ËprocessÃ¢â¬â¢ enabling him to establish that he is a safe driverÃ¢â¬ (Supre me Court of the United States, 2002). Having drawn this analogy, the Justice has actually left no hope for the privacy rightsÃ¢â¬â¢ defenders to protect privacy against public safety. The case has proven that the U.S. public safety policies lack profound understanding of what constitutes substantial risk to public safety and what factors could justify the breach of privacy rights. Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Public safety remains the preliminary concern within the contemporary American legal system. The U.S. Patriot Act has become the culmination of the U.S. fight for public stability, safety, and peace. In the light of constant terrorist threats privacy rights seem to lose their relevance and turn into secondary legal elements. Although it is difficult to compare and equal terrorism to sex offense, sex offenders still create one of the major criminal dangers in the society, taking into account the extremely high level of recidivism among them (Inbau, 1999). There is no guarantee that a convicted and released sex offender would not commit another crime of sexual character. This is why the state makes it possible to justify the emphasis on public safety for the account of privacy rights. Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã In reality, the discussed case creates some generalizations about the state of public safety policies in the United States. On the one hand, the U.S. Patriot Act and legal enforcement agencies promote the importance and prevalence of public safety principles over the privacy rights. On the other hand, several organizations promote the importance of preliminary research before privacy rights are breached for the sake of public safety. Development and implementation of social policies should be based on research whenever possible. It should be noted that to date, few research studies about community notification have been conducted. The research that has been completed has not been able to conclude that community notification reduces recidivism or enhances community safety. (Solove, 2003) However, even when we lack scientific information which could justify community notification and privacy breach to protect public safety, the society has not yet invented more effective means of eliminating public safety threats. Sex offenders and terrorists equally represent serious threats to peace and stability in the society. This is why society invents numerous measures to protect itself from the safety threats and to release itself from the safety pressures. It seems that the U.S. will hardly be able to produce any relevant balance between privacy and public safety. The Supreme Court of the United States constantly confirms the real state of legal affairs in the state: privacy means less when it comes to protecting the public safety of the American nation, although we forget that the American nation is made of separate privacy rights and issues which also require protection. Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã It is stated that Ã¢â¬Å"public safety can be enhanced and limited resources used more efficiently, when, the most aggressive notification practices should be reserved for those offenders who are at highest risk to reoffend and therefore require the most intensive interventionsÃ¢â¬ (Brooks, 1996). However, we must be objective and realistic. When proponents of privacy rights express their desire to utilize sound evaluation procedures, and to protect privacy rights of those who are no longer dangerous to the society, they frequently forget that the American legal system lacks such evaluation models. Public notification has been invented to facilitate the control of public safety and to introduce the timely corrective measures. From the viewpoint of the current legal situation in the United States, the American nation ultimately has to decide what should be more important: privacy rights or public safety. Connecticut v. Doe implies that the country which has gone through terrorist attacks similar to 9/11, cannot any longer neglect the importance of public safety, even when it initially breaches legal privacy principles. Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã In order to justify breaching of privacy rights, the state should develop a set of legal criteria, which will help determine whether a person or an action represents serious threat to public safety. In contemporary legal environment, the American society has not yet produced any other legal alternatives besides community notification. Specialists and human rightsÃ¢â¬â¢ proponents may argue that the U.S. laws completely neglect the importance of personal privacy; but Connecticut v. Doe implies that when privacy threatens the whole society it can no longer be relevant. Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Conclusion Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã From the legal viewpoint, Connecticut v. Doe has finally clarified the official stateÃ¢â¬â¢s viewpoint on the importance of privacy rights vs. public safety. The U.S. Supreme CourtÃ¢â¬â¢s decision has underlined the importance of public safety and the prevalence of public safety principles over privacy rights. Legal professionals still fail to find a correct and justified balance between public safety and privacy rights. This is why it would be more appropriate to develop legal criteria for the assessment of risks a person or an action may produce against the stateÃ¢â¬â¢s public safety. Of course, community notification about sex offenders Ã¢â¬Å"can create vigilantismÃ¢â¬ (Solove, 2003). As a result, the state requires thorough re-consideration of all legal and law enforcement practices which are aimed at protecting public safety, and which risk breaking privacy rights. References Brooks, A. (1996). MeganÃ¢â¬â¢s Law: Constitutionality and policy. Criminal Justice Ethics, 15, 99-101. Inbau, F.E. (1999). Public safety v. individual civil liberties: the prosecutorÃ¢â¬â¢s stand. Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology, 29, 129-134. Solove, D.J. (2003). The virtues of knowing less: justifying privacy protections against disclosure. Duke Law Journal, 53, 6-15. Supreme Court of the United States. (2002). Connecticut Department of Public Safety et al v. Doe, individually and on behalf of all others similarly situated. Retrieved March 8, 2008 from