One security guard was seriously injured and another is in critical condition after being attacked by six men on North Sound Road. On August 18, an altercation occurred on the east end of North ...


On the ground, climate change is hitting us where it counts: the stomach — not to mention the forests, plants and animals. A new United Nations scientific report examines how global warming and land interact in a vicious cycle. Human-caused climate change is dramatically degrading the land, while the way people use the land is making global warming worse. Thursday’s science-laden report says the combination is already making food more expensive, scarcer and even less nutritious. “The cycle is accelerating,” said NASA climate scientist Cynthia Rosenzweig, a report co-author. “The threat of climate change affecting people’s food on their dinner table is increasing.” But if people change the way they eat, grow food and manage forests, it could help save the planet from a far warmer future, scientists said Earth’s landmasses, which are only 30% of the globe, are warming twice as fast as the planet as a whole. While heat-trapping gases are causing problems in the atmosphere, the land has been less talked about as part of climate change. A special report, written by more than 100 scientists and unanimously approved by diplomats from nations around the world at a meeting in Geneva, proposed possible fixes and made more dire warnings. “The way we use land is both part of the problem and also part of the solution,” said Valerie Masson-Delmotte, a French climate scientist who co-chairs one of the panel’s working groups. “Sustainable land management can help secure a future that is comfortable.” Scientists in Thursday’s press conference emphasized both the seriousness of the problem and the need to make societal changes soon. “We don’t want a message of despair,” said science panel official Jim Skea, a professor at Imperial College London. “We want to get across the message that every action makes a difference” The report said climate change already has worsened land degradation, caused deserts to grow, permafrost to thaw and made forests more vulnerable to drought, fire, pests and disease. That’s happened even as much of the globe has gotten greener because of extra carbon dioxide in the air. Climate change has also added to other forces that have reduced the number of species on Earth. “Climate change is really slamming the land,” said World Resources Institute researcher Kelly Levin, who wasn’t part of the study but praised it. And the future could be worse. “The stability of food supply is projected to decrease as the magnitude and frequency of extreme weather events that disrupt food chains increases,” the report said. In the worst-case scenario, food security problems change from moderate to high risk with just a few more tenths of a degree of warming from now. They go from high to “very high” risk with just another 1.8 degrees (1 degree Celsius) of warming from now. Scientists had long thought one of the few benefits of higher levels of carbon dioxide, the major heat-trapping gas, was that it made plants grow more and the world greener, Rosenzweig said. But numerous studies show that the high levels of carbon dioxide reduce protein and nutrients in many crops. For example, high levels of carbon in the air in experiments show wheat has 6 to 13% less protein, 4 to 7% less zinc and 5 to 8% less iron, she said. But better farming practices — such as no-till agricultural and better targeted fertilizer application — have the potential to fight global warming too, reducing carbon pollution up to 18% of current emissions levels by 2050, the report said. If people change their diets, reducing red meat and increasing plant-based foods, such as fruits, vegetables and seeds, the world can save as much as another 15% of current emissions by mid-century. It would also make people more healthy, Rosenzweig said. The science panel said they aren’t telling people what to eat because that’s a personal choice. Still, Hans-Otto Portner, a panel leader from Germany who said he lost weight and felt better after reducing his meat consumption, told a reporter that if she ate less ribs and more vegetables “that’s a good decision and you will help the planet reduce greenhouse gas emissions.” Reducing food waste can fight climate change even more. The report said that between 2010 and 2016 global food waste accounted for 8 to 10% of heat-trapping emissions. “Currently 25-30% of total food produced is lost or wasted,” the report said. Fixing that would free up millions of square miles of land. With just another 0.9 degrees of warming (0.5 degrees Celsius), which could happen in the next 10 to 30 years, the risk of unstable food supplies, wildfire damage, thawing permafrost and water shortages in dry areas “are projected to be high,” the report said. At another 1.8 degrees of warming from now (1 degree Celsius), which could happen in about 50 years, it said those risks “are projected to be very high.” Most scenarios predict the world’s tropical regions will have “unprecedented climatic conditions by the mid to late 20th century,” the report noted. Agriculture and forestry together account for about 23% of the heat-trapping gases that are warming the Earth, slightly less than from cars, trucks, boats and planes. Add in transporting food, energy costs, packaging and that grows to 37%, the report said. But the land is also a great carbon “sink,” which sucks heat-trapping gases out of the air. From about 2007 to 2016, agriculture and forestry every year put 5.7 billion tons (5.2 billion metric tons) of carbon dioxide into the air, but pulled 12.3 billion tons (11.2 billion metric tons) of it out. “This additional gift from nature is limited. It’s not going to continue forever,” said study co-author Luis Verchot , a scientist at the International Center for Tropical Agriculture in Colombia. “If we continue to degrade ecosystems, if we continue to convert natural ecosystems, we continue to deforest and we continued to destroy our soils, we’re going to lose this natural subsidy.” Overall land emissions are increasing, especially because of cutting down forests in the Amazon in places such as Brazil, Colombia and Peru, Verchot said. Recent forest management changes in Brazil “contradicts all the messages that are coming out of the report,” Portner said. Stanford University environmental sciences chief Chris Field, who wasn’t part of the report, said the bottom line is “we ought to recognize that we have profound limits on the amount of land available and we have to be careful about how we utilize it.”

Authorities in Gibraltar said they intercepted Thursday a super tanker believed to be breaching European Union sanctions by carrying a shipment of Iranian crude oil to war-ravaged Syria, while a senior Spanish official said the operation was requested by the United States. Gibraltar port and law enforcement agencies, assisted by Britain's Royal Marines, boarded the Grace 1 early Thursday, authorities on the British overseas territory at the tip of Spain said in a statement. It added that the vessel was believed to be headed to the Baniyas Refinery in Syria, which is a government-owned facility under the control of Syrian President Bashar Assad and subject to the EU's Syrian Sanctions Regime. The EU, and others, has imposed sanctions on Assad's government over its continued crackdown against civilians. They currently target 270 people and 70 entities. Spain's caretaker foreign minister said the tanker was stopped by British authorities after a request from the United States. Josep Borrell told reporters in Madrid that Spain is assessing the implications of the operation because the detention took place in waters it considers its own. Britain insists Gibraltar is part of the United Kingdom but Spain argues that it is not, and the tanker operation risks offending the Spanish. "We're looking into how this (operation) affects our sovereignty," said Borrell, who was nominated earlier this week to become the EU's foreign policy chief. The Spanish claim that the U.S. requested the operation switched attention to whether the tanker was carrying Iranian crude. The Gibraltar authorities didn't confirm the origin of the ship's cargo but Lloyd's List, a publication specialized in maritime affairs, reported this week that the Panama-flagged large carrier was laden with Iranian oil. Experts were said to have concluded that it carried oil from Iran because the tanker wasn't sending geographic information while in Iranian waters. According to a U.N. list, the ship is owned by the Singapore-based Grace Tankers Ltd. According to the data firm Refinitv, the vessel likely carried just over 2 million barrels of Iranian crude oil. Tracking data showed that the tanker made a slow trip around the southern tip of Africa before reaching the Mediterranean. The tanker's detention comes at a particularly sensitive time as tensions between the U.S. and Iran grow over the unraveling of a 2015 nuclear deal, which President Donald Trump withdrew from last year. Trump has also slapped sanctions onto Iran and recently approved the passage of a carrier group, bombers and fighter jets to the Persian Gulf. In recent days, Iran has broken through the limit the deal put on its stockpile of low-enriched uranium and plans on Sunday to boost its enrichment. Meanwhile, oil tankers near the Strait of Hormuz have been targeted in mysterious attacks as Iranian-backed rebels in Yemen launch bomb-laden drones into Saudi Arabia. The U.S. has rushed thousands of additional troops, an aircraft carrier, B-52 bombers and F-22 fighters to the region, raising fears of a miscalculation sparking a wider conflict. Last month Iran shot down a U.S. surveillance drone, further stoking those fears. Iran's intelligence minister said Thursday that any negotiations with the U.S. would have to be approved by Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and would require the lifting of U.S. sanctions. Khamenei has until now ruled out talks with the U.S., saying that Washington cannot be trusted. On Thursday, the official IRNA news agency quoted Information Minister Mahmoud Alavi as saying "if the supreme leader permits, negotiations between Iran and the United States will be held." He added, however, that Tehran would not negotiate under pressure. There was no immediate reaction to the tanker's detention from Syria, which has suffered severe fuel shortages as a result of the civil war and Western sanctions that have crippled the country's oil industry, once the source of 20 percent of government revenues. Iran, which has provided vital military support to Assad, extended a $3 billion credit line for oil supplies beginning in 2013 but the Iranian aid dwindled as Washington restored tough sanctions. In November, the U.S. Treasury Department added a network of Russian and Iranian companies to its blacklist for shipping oil to Syria and warned of "significant risks" for those violating the sanctions. Fabian Picardo, Chief Minister of Gibraltar, which has in the past been a transit port for energy shipments without known buyers, said he has informed the EU about developments. In a statement, the British government welcomed the "firm action" by authorities in Gibraltar.


An aerial view of a section of the UWI St Augustine campus.

The University of the West Indies (UWI) is placed32nd among the 150 best ranked universities across Latin America and the Caribbean, in the latestpublication of college rankings by Times Higher Education magazine. This is an improvemnet of two places from its 37th place ranking in 2018. UWI has maintained its number one ranking among Caribbean universities. This year marks the second timeUWI was being ranked. “This ranking is impressive given that the region has over 200 registered universities. Furthermore, The UWI has improved its position within the top three per cent of universities in Latin America and the Caribbean,” the institution said in a statement on Tuesday. UWI’s Vice-Chancellor, Professor Sir Hilary Beckles, in response to the school's rise in the rankings, said:“We have set out on a strategic mission to radically transform and improve The UWI’s regional and international academic standing as an excellent global university rooted in the Caribbean. "My colleagues are mobilised around this vision, and have worked very hard and smart as a leadership team," Beckles continued. “I am very impressed with their focus and commitment to serve The UWI and the people of the Caribbean who are deserving of excellent outcomes. This rise in our ranking reflects the efficient and effective effort of the entire UWI family to be the best it can be." UWI said its performance reflects the considerably improved hemispheric recognition of the University’s research impact in multiple disciplines, the development of strategic alliances with Latin American universities, and the official recognition of its contribution to the development agenda of the subregion. In addition, UWI said its position was enhanced by the newly created higher education organisation, Universities Caribbean, a collaborative grouping of over 40 universities from Cuba, Curaçao and Colombia to Dominican Republic, Jamaica, Costa Rica and Haiti to Suriname, for whichVice-Chancellor Beckles was elected as thefirst ever President. “These developments served to enhance The UWI’s academic reputation, strategic partnering, and student preparation for the postmodern world,” the statement concluded.

The hurricane season is upon us – are you really prepared? At this time of the year the media floods us with messages and tips on how to prepare for the season and provides us with various checklists to ensure that we, as Caribbean citizens, are ready. For many of us we have these checklists down pat… stock up on the non-perishables, have enough water stored, secure all your valuables and important documents, ensure you have batteries and be sure you know the location of the shelter nearest to you. But what else should be on that checklist? Have you ever thought of what you would need if disaster were to strike? The answer, simply put… you would need support. That’s why making sure that you are sufficiently insured should be the number one thing on your disaster preparedness checklist. In a world filled with so many options, it can be overwhelming trying to decide the best insurer for you and your most valued possessions. Here are some things to consider. The right insurer should be an A.M. Best-rated company with a strong history of paying claims within the Caribbean region. They should be customer-centred at the core of their business, financially strong and have demonstrated their financial stability throughout the region. Let us at Massy United Insurance, a reputable company with a geographical reach across 19 Caribbean territories, help ensure that you are prepared this hurricane season. As a regional general insurance provider Massy United Insurance has once again secured a positive A- (Excellent) A.M. Best rating for the 14th consecutive year. Securing a re-affirmed A- rating from A.M. Best, one of the world’s premier insurance rating agencies, is testimony to our strong balance sheet, financial strength and stability, and our ability to pay claims when needed. With global climate change and sporadic weather patterns becoming more of a concern with each passing year, the peace of mind that comes from knowing that you are protected by a financially strong, top-rated organisation is invaluable. Make the best choice for you, be prepared before disaster strikes.


People stand by an electronic stock board of a securities firm in Tokyo, Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2019.  (AP Photo/Koji Sasahara)

Global stock markets were back in positive territory Wednesday as investors looked ahead to a speech by the Federal Reserve chairman for signs of possible plans for more U.S. interest rate cuts. Market benchmarks in London and Frankfurt rose in early trading. On Wall Street, the futures for the S&P 500 index rose 0.7% to 2,918 and futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 0.6% to 26,085. After a three-day run of gains, U.S. stocks fell Tuesday after a slide in bond yields and a mixed batch of corporate earnings. Financial sector stocks led the declines. Investors are now looking ahead to the Fed's Wednesday release of notes from its policymaking meeting last month and a speech Friday by Chairman Jerome Powell. Markets have "entered a holding pattern" ahead of Powell's afternoon speech at an annual gathering in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, Jeffrey Halley of Oanda said in a report. Investors expect Powell to signal the Fed "is about to embark on a reinvigorated wave of easing," said Halley. However, he said U.S. data "simply does not support the need for an aggressive easing cycle." London's FTSE 100 rose 1.1% in midday trading to 7,205 and Frankfurt's DAX also climbed 1.1% to 11,784. France's CAC-40 jumped 1.5% to 5,426. Tokyo's Nikkei 225 shed 0.3% to close at 20,618.57. Hong Kong's Hang Seng inched up 0.2% to finish at 26,270.04. The Shanghai Composite Index was little changed at 2,880.33. Seoul's Kospi gained 0.2% to 1,964.65 while Sydney's S&P-ASX 200 fell 0.9% to 6,483.30. India's Sensex lost 0.6% to 37,114.28. Taiwan was higher and New Zealand was lower, while Southeast Asian markets were mixed. The U.S. market has been volatile this month as investors try to parse conflicting signals on the U.S. economy and determine whether a recession is on the horizon. A key concern is that the U.S.-Chinese tariff war will weigh on global economic growth. ON TARGET: After mixed results from retailers on Tuesday, Target Corp. topped expectations Wednesday for its second quarter as it pushes faster delivery and invests heavily in new private label brands. Shares in the retailer jumped 15% in premarket trading. ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude gained 63 cents to $56.76 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract shed 1 cent on Tuesday to close at $56.13. Brent crude, used to price international oils, rose 96 cents to $60.99 per barrel in London. The contract advanced 27 cents the previous session to $60.03. CURRENCY: The dollar rose to 106.45 yen from Tuesday's 106.22. The euro inched up to $1.1105.

A woman walks by an electronic stock board of a securities firm in Tokyo, Tuesday, Aug. 20, 2019.  (AP Photo/Koji Sasahara)

Global shares were mostly higher Tuesday after Wall Street rallied on the U.S. decision to give Chinese telecom giant Huawei another 90 days to buy equipment from American suppliers. That decision appeared to inspire a buying mood among investors eager for any signs of progress in the trade war between the U.S. and China. France's CAC 40 added nearly 0.2% in early trading to 5,380.18, while Germany's DAX inched up nearly 0.1% to 11,723.98. Britain's FTSE 100 rose 0.2% to 7,205.60. U.S. shares were set to drift higher with Dow futures edging up 0.1% to 26,143. S&P 500 futures were also up 0.1% at 2,926.50. Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 gained 0.6% to finish at 20,677.22. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 added 1.2% to 6,545.00. South Korea's Kospi rose 1.1% to 1,960.25, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng lost 0.2% to 26,231.54. The Shanghai Composite was down 0.1% at 2,880.00. Recently, investors have been trying to determine whether a recession is on the horizon in the U.S. A key concern is that the escalating and costly trade conflict between the world's two biggest economies will hamper growth around the globe. Earlier this month, Trump announced plans to extend tariffs across virtually all Chinese imports, many of them consumer products that were exempt from earlier rounds of tariffs. The tariffs have been delayed, but ultimately will raise costs for U.S. companies bringing goods in from China. Huawei has become part of the trade war, with the White House showing a willingness to use sanctions against the company as a bargaining chip. The U.S. government blacklisted Huawei in May, deeming it a national security risk, meaning U.S. companies aren't allowed to sell the company technology without government approval. "While it is not unexpected, the extension for the easing of Huawei sanctions had added to the relief for markets at the start of the week," said Jingyi Pan, market strategist for IG in Singapore. ENERGY: Benchmark crude oil rose 14 cents to $56.28 a barrel. Brent crude, the international standard, rose 10 cents to $59.84 a barrel. CURRENCIES: The dollar rose to 106.43 yen from 106.36 yen on Monday. The euro weakened to $1.1074 from $1.1104.


In the Cayman Islands it's always ice cream season. I mean, who doesn’t enjoy a refreshing scoop of vanilla in a warm waffle cone on a broiling hot day? Cayman'sice-cream scene is always brimming with so many frozen possibilities. A traditional scoop. Despite the wide range of adventurous possibilities, someprefer a simple scoop. The best place for this would be Häagen-Dazs and with flavours such as tiramisu, dulce de leche and vanilla caramel brownie, the simple is not really all that simple after all.Luckily for us, there are two locations-- in Camana Bay and Georgetown. What better way to enjoy a warm day in paradise? Head over to Italy. Let’s take this to Italy. Here in Cayman there are two Gelato and Co. locations in Camana Bay and Georgetown, with only the freshest and finest in Italian chilly treats. This is a farm-to-table business and the team heremakes their gelato from scratch. For those who are health conscious,gelato contains less fat than other ice creamsand isa healthier alternative. If you have dietary restrictions, or are having a clean-eating type of day, Gelato and Co. also has dairy-free options. Do it your way. If youare having a sweet-treat cravingbutdon't want to cheat on your diet,Peachwave Frozen Yogurt is your place. Peachwave'sself-serve frozen yogurt outlet features an extensive toppings bar with the sinfully sweet flavours ofchocolates and gummiesor health conscious options such as coconuts, granola and fruit.Calorie counts, sugar-free options and dairy-free alternatives are all offered here. Every two weeks theflavours changeand it is always guaranteed that there will be at least one dairy free and NSA flavor to choose from. So you can indulge, guilt-free and just as good! On your cheat day. At Kazoku Japanese Bistro, the average scoop of vanilla ice cream is tempura fried! To top it all off it is servedwith locally-made rum cake. What's not to love? Feel like a kid again. Who doesn't love an ice-cream cake? Our favourite can be found at Dairy Queen in Georgetown where they have pulled out all stops with a three layer slice of heaven featuring vanillaon top, crunch centre in the middle and chocolate on the bottom. Every day can be your birthday at Dairy Queen! With all of these offerings in the Cayman Islands, it's so easyto feel like you're six-years old again. And with so many diet-friendly substitutions, you can have all the fun without the guilt.

One security guard was seriously injured and another is in critical condition after being attacked by six men on North Sound Road. On August 18, an altercation occurred on the east end of North Sound road.A security guard addressed four young males who were using a pool facility that was not open to the public at that time. The males were spoken to and eventually left the premises, however they returned sometime later with two other males and began throwing rocks at the security officers and other staff, striking some of them. During the incident one of the security officers was struck and seriously injured by a vehicle that had been on the compound. It is suspected that one of the males who had been throwing the rockswas able to enter the vehicle and drive it, before fleeing with the other males and leaving the vehicle behind. The man who was struck by the vehicle, along with another who was hit with a rock, were both transported to the Cayman Islands Hospital for treatment. The man who was hit with the rock was subsequently discharged, while the man who was struck by the vehicle remains in hospital in critical condition. The matter is currently under investigation and police are asking anyone with any information to come forward. Anyone who may have witnessed the incident or who may have seen the males at the location earlier in the afternoon/evening is asked to contactGeorge Town CID at 949-4222. Anonymous tips can be provided directly to the RCIPS via the Confidential Tip Line at 949-7777, or via the RCIPSwebsite. Tips can also be submitted anonymously via the Miami-based call centre ofCrime Stoppers at 800-8477(TIPS)oronline.