Raf Manji is the leader of the Opportunities Party and has a background in governance, finance and social enterprise. OPINION: In Budget 2022, the Government announced it would deliver a one-off cash grant of $350 to 2.1 million New Zealanders, as part of its response to the cost of living crisis. For some reason, this direct cash grant unfairly excludes those receiving the Winter Energy Payment, who are already in the most need of financial support. Whilst the amount is small, it demonstrates the Government can provide direct cash support when required. READ MORE: NZ Reserve Bank tipped to raise official cash rate to highest it's been since 2016 No easy way out of inflation conundrum Costs are rising across the board. How do you know if a price hike is justified? Like the two-month extension of half-price fares for public transport , the Government is being too timid. In this current cost of living crisis, there is one policy that other political … [Read more...] about Cost of living crisis shows it’s time for a Universal Basic Income
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By Janek Schmidt Published 16 hours ago Share close Share page Copy link About sharing Related Topics Climate change The war in Ukraine has upended Germany's energy policy. Since the start of the war Germany has reduced its dependence on Russian oil from 35% to 12% and on Russian gas from 55% to 35%. Nevertheless, energy trading is a huge source of revenue for Moscow. Over the first two months of the war Germany paid almost €9bn (£7.7bn; $9.6bn) for Russian oil and gas imports according to the Finnish thinktank CREA . Veronika Grimm is an economics professor at the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg, and currently one of Germany's three special advisors to the federal government, called Economic Sages. "We need to diversify and decarbonise our energy sources faster than initially planned," she says. To help achieve that goal, Ms Grimm wants the nation to "ramp-up" its … [Read more...] about Could hydrogen ease Germany’s reliance on Russian gas?
Mini-Holland cycling schemes to encourage people to ditch their cars are to be introduced to Britain’s major cities under government plans. Nineteen local authorities, including Manchester, Hull and Nottinghamshire, are to get government funds for mini-Hollands with segregated bike lanes , traffic calming and residential streets blocked to cars. It is part of a £200 million extension of the Government’s £2 billion “active travel” plans to persuade motorists to give up their cars for short journeys and instead cycle or walk. It will also pay for 134 schemes across 46 local councils outside London which include new cycle lanes, footways and pedestrian crossings. Local officials have steered away from describing any of the projects as Low Traffic Neighbourhoods (LTNs), which have provoked intense local opposition over road closures and claims of increased congestion on boundary highways in some areas. But they did acknowledge some had LTN features. Chris Boardman , … [Read more...] about Wheels are in motion to turn British cities into cycle-friendly ‘mini-Hollands’
Japanese knotweed: Phil Spencer discusses plant How to keep your lawn lush, borders beautiful and more with our FREE email SUBSCRIBE Invalid email We use your sign-up to provide content in ways you've consented to and to improve our understanding of you. This may include adverts from us and 3rd parties based on our understanding. You can unsubscribe at any time. More info Japanese knotweed is a fast-growing plant which is known to invade every part of the garden once established. This aggressive species can be problematic for nearby plants, neighbours, and even the value of your property - so how can you get rid of it for good? Specialist removal is the best course of action to banish Japanese knotweed, but it could cost you upwards of £10,000. Here are the cheapest alternatives to try at home yourself. Related articles Cleaning: ‘Great way’ to banish flies from homes - works ‘instantly’ How to ‘instantly’ … [Read more...] about How to get rid of Japanese knotweed – cheapest ways to banish ‘evil’ plant for good
David Bennett, the man who received a pig heart transplant in a groundbreaking surgery earlier this year, has died at the age of 57, two months after his operation. His cause of death and whether the pig organ was involved remains unknown. Mr Bennett was gravely ill and only received the pig heart as a last resort because he had terminal heart disease, an irregular heartbeat and was ineligible for a human organ. His doctors in Maryland, US, had offered the grandfather-of-five one last glimmer of hope to prolong his life: a replacement heart from a genetically modified pig. News of his operation made headlines around the world, with Mr Bennett saying it was “do or die'' and that he accepted it was a “shot in the dark”. The operation was initially a success. The genetically modified heart, which had been designed to be small enough for a human and not to be rejected, was functioning well. Surgeon Dr Bartley Griffith received special permission from the US Food and Drug … [Read more...] about Man who had world’s first pig heart transplant dies
By Nick Hopkins Published 13 October 2015 Share close Share page Copy link About sharing Legalising cannabis could generate hundreds of millions of pounds a year in tax and cut costs for the police and prisons, a government study has found. The internal Treasury report, obtained by BBC Newsnight, said regulating the market would "generate notable tax revenue" and "lead to overall savings to the criminal justice system". MPs debated the issue on Monday, after a petition calling for legalisation drew more than 220,000 signatures. Ministers do not plan to alter the law. The Home Office said it had "no plans" to change the law on cannabis, which is currently classified as a Class B illegal drug , adding that cannabis use was falling gradually. '216 tonnes' The Treasury study was undertaken earlier this year at the behest of the Liberal Democrats when they were in … [Read more...] about Cannabis legalisation worth millions – government report
A team of scientists is assessing Dunedin's earthquake potential and what lies below the city, using knowledge from the Canterbury quakes. PAUL GORMAN reports. After a mild start, Tuesday April 9, 1974 soon turned showery and cool in Dunedin, with a high of about 13 degrees Celsius. The big news on the front of the Otago Daily Times (price 6c) that day was the city council's decision to increase parking fees by up to 50 per cent, with metered parking to cost 30c for two hours. There were doubts about the origins of historic ship timbers found in the Portobello mudflats and reports of deadlock over efforts to improve pedestrian safety outside St Paul's Cathedral at the top of the Octagon. It was just two months after the end of the hugely successful Commonwealth Games up the road in Christchurch. A pint of milk cost 4c and Labour prime minister Norman Kirk had about four months to live. Darkness fell about 6.45pm and many switched on their black-and-white televisions to … [Read more...] about Could Dunedin be hit by a large, local earthquake?
Nine in ten consumers are happy to shop second-hand – due to concerns about the cost of living and the environment, as well as a desire to own “unique” items. A poll of 2,000 adults found the stigma of buying used goods is now a thing of the past, with half more likely to purchase pre-owned items now compared to five years ago. Two-thirds are happy to buy used or refurbished mobile phones – which emerged as one of the most sought-after second-hand items available. Three in ten enjoy buying pre-loved clothing, while 35% seek out retro furniture, and 24% like sourcing old homeware goods. A number of factors are behind the popularity of used items – including wanting to be more sustainable (36%), and needing to cut costs (32%). Wanting to buy one-of-a-kind items (16%) is also a contributing factor – with around a quarter noting second-hand goods are “surprisingly good quality and good value”. The Virgin Media O2 study marks its “Do One Thing” campaign, inspiring adults to … [Read more...] about Nine in ten consumers happy to buy second-hand due to concerns about environment
Dutch airline KLM is being hauled up in court over accusations its "misleading" advertising amounts to greenwashing, in what is believed to be the world's first such case for the aviation industry. Environmental lawyers Client Earth will argue the airline's adverts and carbon offsetting scheme give a false impression of the sustainability of its flights and plans to tackle the pollution they cause. They claim this violates European consumer law. Campaigners Fossielvrij NL, also bringing the lawsuit, today handed KLM a letter notifying them of the action at the airline's AGM in Paris. "KLM's marketing misleads consumers into believing that its flights won't worsen the climate emergency," said Hiske Arts, campaigner at Fossielvrij NL. "But this is a myth." Unless KLM agrees to cease what campaigners describe as greenwashing, a Dutch court will begin examining the case. Sky News has contacted KLM for comment. Advertisement The lawsuit is the latest in a … [Read more...] about KLM faces court over ‘greenwashing’ adverts and offsetting scheme in first major challenge to aviation industry
Ant and Dec are helping to launch a new financial education programme from Santander and Twinkl (Image: Santander/Twinkl) Get pensions news and advice plus latest money alerts for FREE now SUBSCRIBE Invalid email We use your sign-up to provide content in ways you've consented to and to improve our understanding of you. This may include adverts from us and 3rd parties based on our understanding. You can unsubscribe at any time. More info Studies have also linked high levels of economic deprivation with low levels of financial understanding, making problems worse for already vulnerable communities. Related articles Council tax rebate: Full list of councils who STILL haven't paid 'Glimmer of hope' for Premium Bonds holders thanks to NS&I's pledge The data was sourced by Santander UK, which is working with ambassadors Ant and Dec to launch a new financial education programme – The Numbers Game – created in partnership with … [Read more...] about Two-thirds of young people say a lack of financial education has led them into debt