31 March 2013 South Africa thrashed Ireland by 86 runs at the ICC Women’s World Twenty in Sylhet, Bangladesh on Saturday to set up a showdown against New Zealand on Monday which will decide whether or not the Proteas progress to the semi-finals. With their huge victory, South Africa improved their net run rate significantly. Most importantly, it is now better than the White Ferns’, which means a win would pull Mignon du Preez’s team level with the Kiwis on points, but above them on net run rate. The Proteas were expected to beat Ireland, who fell to their third loss in three outings, but the one-sided nature of the result was perhaps a little surprising.‘It was wonderful’ South Africa went into the game on the back of a hard-fought six wicket loss to Australia, so Proteas’ coach Hilton Moreeng was happy to see his side back on the winning track. “It was wonderful to see such a good fight back from the team today,” he said afterwards. “It’s always difficult to bounce back after a loss, having played so well against a team like Australia. “I’m very proud of their professionalism and character during this match. The batters did so well up front to set us up and our bowlers were just exceptional.”Good start Du Preez elected to bat and Lizelle Lee and Dane van Niekerk, who put on 163 without loss against Pakistan, again got the team off to a good start, posting 57 for the first wicket before Van Niekerk departed for 25. Lee fell for the innings’ top score of 43 with the total on 72 in the 14th over, but some clean hitting by Chloe Tryon and Sune Luus saw the run rate soar in the closing overs, with Tryon finishing undefeated on 35 off only 12 deliveries, with three fours and three sixes, while Luus ended on 29 not out from just 10 deliveries, with six fours.Irish innings Ireland, in reply, lost Clare Shillington in the first over, but then steadied their innings as wicketkeeper Mary Waldron and captain Isobel Joyce added 41 for the second wicket before Waldron was stumped by Trisha Chetty off the bowling of Marcia Letsoala for Ireland’s top score of 33. Joyce went on to make 15 and Melissa Scott-Hayward 14, but when she departed on 67, another victim of Lesoalo, the Irish innings folded, with the next highest scorer making only six runs. The absence of Cecilia Joyce because of an injury did not help either.Standout bowlers Proteas’ opening bowler Shabnim Ismail led the assault on the Irish batswomen, capturing an eye-opening 3 for 5 in her three overs, while Dane van Niekerk did her bit by picking up 3 for 10 in two overs of leg spin. Letsoalo, who made two important breakthroughs, finished with 2 for 23 in her three overs.
Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds has blocked Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller from joining 21 states and six large cities in a lawsuit challenging a Trump administration policy easing restrictions on coal-fired power plants.Miller says he sought approval from the governor in July, but Reynolds declined.Miller, a Democrat, reached an agreement with Republican Governor Reynolds in May requiring him to get her consent before joining such lawsuits.In exchange, Reynolds vetoed a bill lawmakers passed that weakened the attorney general’s powers.Trump has replaced an Obama administration plan that required states to cut emissions from fossil fuel-burning power plants with a rule relaxing the state restrictions.The federal lawsuit claims the Trump rule violates the federal Clean Air Act.
zoom The Great Pacific Garbage Patch contains as much as sixteen times more plastic than previously estimated, with pollution levels increasing exponentially.1.8 trillion pieces of plastic weighing 80,000 metric tons are currently afloat in the area which is rapidly growing, according to a three-year mapping effort conducted by an international team of scientists affiliated with The Ocean Cleanup Foundation, six universities and an aerial sensor company.The Great Pacific Garbage Patch (GPGP), located halfway between Hawaii and California, is the largest accumulation zone for ocean plastics on Earth. In order to analyze the full extent of the GPGP, the team conducted the most comprehensive sampling effort of the GPGP to date by crossing the debris field with 30 vessels simultaneously, supplemented by two aircraft surveys.Although most vessels were equipped with standard surface sampling nets, the fleet’s mothership RV Ocean Starr also trawled two six-meter-wide devices, which allowed the team to sample medium to largesized objects. To increase the surface area surveyed, and quantify the largest pieces of plastic a C-130 Hercules aircraft was fitted with advanced sensors to collect multispectral imagery and 3D scans of the ocean garbage. The fleet collected a total of 1.2 million plastic samples, while the aerial sensors scanned more than 300 km2 of ocean surface.The results reveal that the GPGP, defined as the area with more than 10 kg of plastic per km2, measures 1.6 million square kilometers, three times the size of continental France. These figures are four to sixteen times higher than previous estimates. 92% of the mass is represented by larger objects, while only 8% of the mass is contained in microplastics, defined as pieces smaller than 5 mm in size.“We were surprised by the amount of large plastic objects we encountered,” Dr. Julia Reisser, Chief Scientist of the expeditions, said, adding that they used to think most of the debris consists of small fragments.By comparing the amount of microplastics with historical measurements of the GPGP, the team found that plastic pollution levels within the GPGP have been growing exponentially since measurements began in the 1970s.“To be able to solve a problem, we believe it is essential to first understand it. These results provide us with key data to develop and test our cleanup technology, but it also underlines the urgency of dealing with the plastic pollution problem. Since the results indicate that the amount of hazardous microplastics is set to increase more than tenfold if left to fragment, the time to start is now,” Boyan Slat, Founder of The Ocean Cleanup and co-author of the study, concluded.