‘Grotesque greed’: UN chief Guterres slams oil and gas companies | Oil and Gas News

UN Secretary-Basic Antonio Guterres urges governments to tax oil and gasoline firms’ earnings amid the vitality disaster.

United Nations Secretary-Basic Antonio Guterres slammed the “grotesque greed” of oil and gasoline firms and their monetary backers and urged governments globally to “tax these extreme earnings” to assist probably the most susceptible individuals.

“It’s immoral for oil and gasoline firms to be making file earnings from this vitality disaster on the backs of the poorest individuals and communities, at an enormous value to the local weather,” Guterres advised reporters on Wednesday.

The 2 largest United States oil firms – Exxon Mobil Corp and Chevron Corp – plus British-based Shell and France’s TotalEnergies mixed earned practically $51bn in the latest quarter, nearly double what the group introduced in for the year-ago interval.

“I urge all governments to tax these extreme earnings, and use the funds to assist probably the most susceptible individuals by way of these tough instances,” Guterres mentioned.

“And I urge individuals all over the place to ship a transparent message to the fossil gasoline trade and their financiers: that this grotesque greed is punishing the poorest and most susceptible individuals, whereas destroying our solely widespread house,” he mentioned.

Politicians and client advocates have criticised the oil firms for capitalising on a worldwide supply shortage to fatten earnings and gouge customers. US President Joe Biden mentioned in June that Exxon and others have been making “extra money than God” at a time when client gasoline costs surged to data.

Final month, Britain handed a 25 p.c windfall tax on oil and gasoline producers within the North Sea. US lawmakers have mentioned an analogous thought, although it faces lengthy odds in Congress.

Guterres mentioned Russia’s warfare in Ukraine and the local weather breakdown have been stoking a worldwide food, vitality and finance disaster.

“Many growing nations – drowning in debt, with out entry to finance, and struggling to get better from the COVID-19 pandemic – may go over the brink,” he mentioned. “We’re already seeing the warning indicators of a wave of financial, social and political upheaval that would go away no nation untouched.”

Report slams UK’s handling of migrant and asylum seeker arrivals | Migration News

The UK has didn’t adequately reply to a surge in arrivals by way of the English Channel, unbiased inspection concludes.

The UK’s dealing with of migrants and asylum seekers who arrive by small boats by way of the English Channel has been unacceptable, ineffective and inefficient, an unbiased inspection has concluded.

The inspection, led by Chief Inspector of Borders and Immigration David Neal, targeted on the preliminary processing of individuals at two authorities centres in Dover, southeastern England, between December 2021 and January 2022.

Its report, printed on Thursday after months of delay, concluded the UK authorities’s response to an rising variety of arrivals on its shores for the reason that starting of final yr was “poor, notably when it comes to programs, processes, assets, knowledge assortment and correct file protecting”.

“These migrants crossed the Channel in dire circumstances. Many have been susceptible and in danger, together with youngsters and ladies on their very own, and once they arrived in Dover the way in which they have been handled was unacceptable,” Neal mentioned.

“It’s because the Dwelling Workplace has failed, over the previous three years, to maneuver from a disaster response to having higher programs and procedures in place and treating this as enterprise as standard,” he added, citing the federal government division answerable for dealing with immigration issues.

Perilous crossings

The variety of folks trying harmful sea crossings to the UK has risen sharply for the reason that starting of 2021, forcing the federal government to deal with criticism from some quarters that border controls are too weak, whereas others mentioned that these looking for asylum are being handled inhumanely.

Greater than 28,000 migrants and asylum seekers crossed from mainland Europe to the UK by way of the English Channel final yr, a greater than threefold enhance on the determine for the yr earlier than, and crossings have continued at a tempo this yr.

Many have made the perilous crossing of one of many world’s busiest transport lanes in small dinghies unsafe for the journey.

Highlighting the hazard of the route, in November 2021, 27 folks died whereas trying to achieve the UK in an inflatable dinghy – the deadliest recorded accident of its type within the Channel – triggering a blame game between London and Paris.

The report mentioned the federal government’s insufficient response to the surge in arrivals at Dover had uncovered gaps in safety procedures and left susceptible folks in danger.

“Knowledge, the lifeblood of decision-making, is inexcusably terrible. Gear to hold out safety checks is usually first-generation and unreliable. Biometrics, akin to taking fingerprints and pictures, usually are not all the time recorded,” he mentioned.
“Put merely, if we don’t have a file of individuals coming into the nation, then we have no idea who’s threatened or who’s threatening.”

Controversial Rwanda plan

Responding to the report, the Dwelling Workplace mentioned that adjustments made to its dealing with of arrivals by way of the English Channel meant that “the operation is now basically totally different to that which was inspected” on the two websites.

“The adjustments … have been already in prepare on the time of the inspection and have been particularly aimed toward addressing a number of the core points highlighted on this report,” it mentioned.

“Nonetheless, the Dwelling Workplace acknowledges the observations of truth within the report and accepts all of the suggestions with out demur.”

The report got here because the UK authorities continued to pursue a highly controversial new immigration policy that will see migrants and refugees despatched to Rwanda for processing.

Below an settlement struck in April, London plans to redirect hundreds of people that arrive on its shores with out documentation greater than 4,000 miles (6,4000km) away to the East African nation.

However the plan, which critics have denounced as unethical, unworkable and overly costly, has run into authorized challenges after its opponents instigated a judicial evaluate to problem its lawfulness.

The evaluate is scheduled to start in early September, London’s Excessive Court docket mentioned on Wednesday.

US soprano Angel Blue slams blackface, pulls out of Italy opera | Arts and Culture News

The US singer says she is not going to sing in, La Traviata, after a current work on the theatre had performers in blackface.

Soprano Angel Blue says she is not going to carry out in an opera in Italy this month as a result of blackface was used within the staging of a distinct work earlier on the identical stage.

The US singer posted a notice on her Instagram web page saying she can be bowing out of, La Traviata, at Verona’s Enviornment this month as a result of the theatre not too long ago mounted one other Giuseppe Verdi opera, Aida, that had performers in blackface.

She blasted such use of “archaic” theatrical practices as “offensive, humiliating, and outright racist”.

Angel Blue, nevertheless, was nonetheless listed on the Enviornment’s web site on Saturday as singing the position of Violetta in “La Traviata” on July 22 and 30.

The theatre mentioned it hoped that Blue, who’s Black, would settle for an invite to fulfill with Enviornment officers in a “dialogue” concerning the difficulty. The Enviornment, in a press release Friday, mentioned it had “no cause nor intent in any way to offend and disturb anybody’s sensibility”.

A view of the stand at Verona's Arena during a performance
A view of the stands throughout ‘Cavalleria Rusticana’ lyric opera, on the Enviornment di Verona theatre, in Verona, Italy [File: Luca Bruno/AP Photo]

For many years, US civil rights organisations have publicly condemned blackface — during which white performers blacken their faces — as dehumanising Blacks by introducing and reinforcing racial stereotypes.

The Enviornment earlier this yr mounted performances of Aida, primarily based on a 2002 staging of the opera basic by Italian director Franco Zeffirelli who died in 2019. That staging makes use of blackface.

“Expensive Buddies, Household, and Opera Lovers,” started the soprano’s Instagram submit. “I’ve come to the unlucky conclusion that I can’t be singing La Traviata at Enviornment di Verona this summer season as deliberate.”

Referring to Enviornment’s determination to make use of blackface make-up in Aida, the singer wrote: “Let me be completely clear: the usage of blackface underneath any circumstances, inventive or in any other case, is a deeply misguided observe primarily based on archaic theatrical traditions which don’t have any place in trendy society. It’s offensive, humiliating and outright racist.”

She wrote that she couldn’t “in good conscience affiliate myself with an establishment which continues this observe”.

The theatre’s assertion mentioned, “Angel Blue knowingly dedicated herself to sing on the Enviornment” despite the fact that the “traits” of the 2002 Zeffirelli staging have been “well-known”.

Nonetheless, the theatre burdened its hope that her protest would in the end enhance understanding between cultures, in addition to educate Italian audiences.

A view of the stage during 'Pagliacci' (Clowns) lyric opera at Verona Arena
A view of the stage throughout, Pagliacci,( Clowns) lyric opera, on the Enviornment di Verona theatre, in Verona, Italy [File: Luca Bruno/AP Photo]

“Each nation has completely different roots, and their cultural and social buildings developed alongside completely different historic and cultural paths,” mentioned the assertion by the Enviornment of Verona Basis. “Widespread convictions have typically been reached solely after years of dialogue and mutual understanding.”

The Enviornment assertion burdened dialogue, “in effort to know others’ viewpoint, in respect of consciously assumed inventive obligations”.

“Contraposition, judgments, labeling, lack of dialogue solely feed the tradition of contrasts, which we completely reject,” mentioned the assertion, interesting for cooperation “to keep away from divisions”.