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Celtics’ crown

Newly crowned Division One champions City United Celtics charged from behind to clinch the best of three series 2-1 against Spartans and gain promotion to the Co-operators General Insurance Barbados Amateur Basketball Association's Premier League.

The veteran Celtics team stumbled to a four-point loss 84-80 in the opening game but managed to recover well to level the series 1-1 last weekend when they won game two 70-62 to force a decisive game three which captain Sydney 'Bouncer' Rowe and his men won 92-71 at the Wildey Gymnasium last night.

[caption id="attachment_273773" align="aligncenter" width="450"] City United Celtics defeated Spartans 92-71 to lift the Co-operators General Insurance Barbados Amateur Basketball Association Division One title last night. (Pictures by Morissa Lindsay)[/caption]

Celtics steered their offensive drive well and commanded the first three stanzas 29-16, 44-40 and 69-55 compliments the talented veteran point-guard Adrian Stewart who had a game-high 33 points. Celtics' task was made the easier as Spartans failed to communicate properly during some crucial plays down the stretch.

[caption id="attachment_273774" align="aligncenter" width="450"] Adrian Stewart (left) scored a game-high 33 points for the champions; here he shoots a trey over the head of Spartans’ point guard Jason Bowen.[/caption]

Rowe told Barbados TODAY afterwards it was a wonderful feeling to win division one and thanked those players who left their respective clubs to join Celtics, established eleven years ago in 2007.  Most of the men who play for Celtics are over 40 years old and Rowe, also president of the club, said it was his intention to open the door for any youngsters who wished to play for a premier league team to join the club.

“Our plan with the older guys was to win division one and open the club doors for any youngsters that got dreams of playing basketball in Barbados. We asked some of our guys that played junior basketball with us back in 2007 and we get some good feedback [so far]... And we are looking for a coach too because I wear too many hats as president, coach and player,” Rowe said.

Celtics capitalized on several turnovers from Spartans, with Rowe who is the chief cook and bottle washer of the victorious team, registering14 points. Point guards Mario Springer and Stephenson Callender who was benched earlier on in the final quarter after five personal fouls scored 13 and 11 points each while Shawn Henry tallied nine.

In fact three minutes into the second quarter, the diminutive Springer began to free his arms and scored the first seven points to start that period and forced Spartans to change their defensive strategy to a one on one marking approach.

Spartans had quite a few turnovers in the match and point guard Jason Bowen was responsible for three of them that resulted in fastbreaks by Celtics, as the men in all-green scored six straight points to begin the second half.

Spartans down by 12 points (44-56) decided to bring on point guard John-Paul Alleyne who should have been off the bench a long time before. In fact, he should have been in the starting five and Alleyne showed just why when he scored as soon as he hit the court.

But Celtics responded right away through Stewart with a candy fade-away two-pointer followed by a long-range bulls-eye three-point shot over the head of Spartans' injured captain Phillip Yearwood who struggled throughout the match with what appeared to be a right hamstring injury.

Stewart definitely had the hot hands and there wasn't anything that Spartans defence was able to do to stop him, as the 47-year-old former national player took aim over the head of Spartans small forward Keon Young for another two-pointer.

Celtics then went on to lead 67-55 and it was safe to say that effort by Stewart combined with Celtics' determination to win, led by captain Sydney Rowe, placed them well on the road to victory. With less than 30 seconds left to play, Rowe even hit the floor for a steal with his massive, trunk-like structure banging the gymnasium floor and leading to a fan in the stands yelling that it would take a couple thousand dollars to repair the area impacted by his landing. But Rowe's impact had long been felt by the Spartans.

Spartans tried their best to keep in the game and even at the beginning of the decisive fourth quarter they tried to stay alive despite a ten-point gap. Spartans also sought to take advantage of the fact that Celtics players began to tire and they tried to press their defence hard inside the paint. But having worked so hard to reach that point in the game, Celtics weren't about to release their grip on the title and came up with several long outlet passes to either Stewart or Springer for layups, and did so effectively so, as Celtics won by a whopping 21 points. 


The post Celtics’ crown appeared first on Barbados Today.

A $3 billion exercise

It will require an estimated $3 billion worth of investment in a diverse set of renewable energy sources if Barbados is to achieve its goal of 100 per cent renewable energy usage by 2030.

At the same time, officials are predicting that the island could reap as much as $2.5 billion in economic benefits within ten years of becoming 100 per cent dependent on renewable energy sources.

Chief Project Analyst in the Ministry of Energy and Water Resources Brian Haynes said investment was critical if Barbados was serious about achieving its vision for the sector, adding that without diversity “we are not going to make the targets that we are hoping to make”.

[caption id="attachment_273764" align="aligncenter" width="400"] Chief Project Analyst in the Ministry of Energy and Water Resources Brian Haynes.[/caption]

“This diversity needs about 545 to about 550 megawatts of power dependent on the configuration that we advance. We are talking about capital investment of between BDS$2.4 to BDS$3 billion. This level of investment is large, but it is not insurmountable because we have a certain amount of liquidity here. We also need to be able to unlock that liquidity to get that investment happening,” Haynes told the opening of a high level round table meeting on the renewable energy industry at the 3W’s Pavilion at the University of the West Indies (UWI), Cave Hill Campus on Monday.

“With that investment the expectation is, and we are talking about ten years in the future and beyond, BDS$2 billion to BDS$2.5 billion [annually on average] in terms of economic profit. That takes into consideration not only what is done with the firms and businesses and households, but it also the indirect – so those persons who are working and investing [in the sector],” Haynes explained.

A 100 per cent renewable energy policy means that the country would move from its current 944 gigawatt hours (GWH) per year usage to between 2,000 and 2,400 GWH/year.

Data showed that between 2006 and 2015 Barbados was importing an estimated 11,654 barrels of oils per day to meet its needs.

The rate of solar photovoltaic electricity going to the national grid slowed considerably in 2017 to reach a mere 0.01 per cent, after a spike in 2013 when oil prices reached an all-time low of about US$30 a barrel.

Up to the end of 2017, only 3.8 per cent of electricity or 27 megawatts came from solar photovoltaic systems.

Haynes explained that a lack of implementation, a lack of adequate financing and human resources, low technical capacity and low pricing certainty had led to low investor confidence over the years, which had hampered the expansion of the renewable energy efforts.

He said in order to achieve the island’s energy goal a multipronged approach was necessary, which would tackle energy for cooling, lighting, transportation as well as energy efficiency.

“We cannot only look at the 900 plus gigawatt hours we are currently consuming, but we have to speak about what is happening on the road. The transportation sector accounts for between 37 and 40 per cent of our fuel consumption and we have to address that,” insisted Haynes.

Executive Director of the Barbados Renewable Energy Association (BREA) Meshia Clarke said she believed the recovery of the ailing Barbados economy depended heavily on the renewable energy sector.

She insisted that as Government embarked on its mission critical action plan to address Barbados’ balance of payment challenges, the renewable energy sector should be given priority.

“What is needed more urgently now than ever is the recognition that the country’s economic recovery must be aligned to an overall strategy [that addresses] economic growth and curtails our foreign debt,” said Clarke.

“Our position has been centred [on] the understanding that the renewable energy and energy efficiency sector present a pathway for the country to stimulate economic growth through the creation of new job opportunities, increased investment prospects and [an] overall reduction in the level of foreign exchange spend on purchase of oil,” she explained.

Acknowledging that Government’s policy objective regarding the sector will require significant levels of investment, Clarke said banking institutions and insurance companies have a significant role to play.

Monday’s meeting among private and public sector representatives, donor organizations and other stakeholders, and insurance and financial services sector officials, sought to among other things, identify a new coordinated and collaborative approach towards developing the sector.

The post A $3 billion exercise appeared first on Barbados Today.

No broken promises

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The post No broken promises appeared first on Guyana Chronicle.

Container scanning site operationalised at GNIC

ILLEGAL items in containers will now be intercepted as the mobile X-ray imaging scanner will now be in full operation after a container scanner site was launched on Monday at Lombard Street Georgetown. In attendance were Minister of Finance Winston Jordan, Commissioner General of GRA Godfrey Statia, CEO of Guyana National Industrial Company (GNIC) Clinton

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Senior citizen found guilty of raping child, 10

AFTER several hours of deliberations, a mixed 12-member jury on Monday afternoon returned with two counts of guilty verdict for Abdool Jamil, 66, in the Demerara High Court before Justice Priya Sewnarine-Beharry in the Sexual Offences Court. The foreman told the court that on the 1st count the verdict was unanimous while on the 2nd

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OVERCOME with grief at a murder committed by his brother, Brenton McLean wept as he hugged the murder victim’s son and apologised to him yesterday.

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