Xstrata shareholders join Glencore’s to approve merger

Zug-based conglomerate to be world’s fourth largest mining company GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – Xstrata shareholders followed their Glencore counterparts to approve a merger valued at $67 billion,  in two votes in Zug, Tuesday 20 November. An official statement will be released Wednesday 21 November. A vote early in the day by Glencore’s shareholders, saw a 99.4 […]

Weed, meet new worker: South Africa solves 2 problems

ILO: 20m hectares of imported “Alien plants” have created 14,000  new jobs GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – The silver lining in South Africa’s imported alien plants story is that the undesirable weeds have led to the creation of the Working for Water project that employs 14,000 people. Another 10,000 jobs are planned, says the International Labour Organization […]

Swiss throwing away too much food, says WWF


BERN, SWITZERLAND – Swiss households are throwing away 320 grams of food per person, per day, says the WFF based on a new study done by ETH, the Zurich federal polytechnic university. It amounts to 2 million tons of waste a year, much of which is avoidable. The cost of unconsumed food per household is […]

Wood, suddenly stylish for Swiss building


BERN, SWITZERLAND – Wood is back! The Swiss construction industry has been steadily increasing its use of wood to build homes, solo or as part of hybrid constructions with other materials. New figures were published Wednesday 26 September by the Federal Office for the Environment, at the same time that a booklet, “The Swiss People […]

S Africa, Peru gov’ts shift stances in conflicts with miners

S Africa drops murder charges, Peru lifts state of emergency GENEVA, SWITZERLAND -S Africa announced Sunday that it is dropping murder charges against 270 miners under an apartheid-era law that would allow the government to declare the striking miners had a “common purpose” that would lay guilt at their door. The charges, following the worst […]

Major Peru mine project “on backburner”: PM


GENEVA / LIMA, PERU -  A controversial mining project “is on the back burner”, Peruvian Prime Minister Juan Jimenez said Thursday 23 August, a day after a survey showed that most residents in the northern province of Cajamarca opposed the mine. Jimenez became prime minister last month after the previous cabinet was disbanded by President […]

China, Switzerland sign environmental affairs agreement


BERN, SWITZERLAND – China and Switzerland have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to “intensify dialogue on environmental policy and facilitate expertise and information sharing on air pollution control, water protection, waste management and nature protection.” The MOU, signed in Bern Thursday 28 June by Federal Councillor Doris Leuthard and China’s Environment Minister Zhou Shengxian, comes […]

Rio+20 conference opens With IP, tech transfer, underlying debate


Republished with permission from IP Watch By Patralekha Chatterjee for Intellectual Property Watch RIO DE JANEIRO — As world leaders, along with thousands of government, private-sector and nonprofit participants, get ready to meet in Rio de Janeiro this week, 20 years after this Brazilian city hosted the historic first Earth Summit, there are fears that […]

Solar Impulse pilot clocks extraordinary 18 hours to Madrid


Swiss pioneering plane hosted by Morocco as construction begins on world’s largest thermo-solar power plant LAUSANNE, SWITZERLAND – André Borschberg flew Solar Impulse for 17h 3min 59s Thursday 24 May, to land the experimental solar plane at Madrid’s Barajas airport. He flew from the Payerne aerodrome in Switzerland over the Massif Central towards the city […]

Peruvian dolphin deaths due to “natural causes”, says official

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – Hundreds of dolphins washed up on Peruvian coasts earlier this year died from “natural causes”, and not from explosions in offshore oil exploration, says Fisheries Minister, Gladys Trevino. An earlier study by the environmental group Orca, which tested 30 dead dolphins found on Peru’s northwestern coast, suggested that explosions had caused the deaths. […]