Sunday, June 17, 2018
AUSTRALIAN Financial Review 15 June 2018
There are talks about not using Huawei, a leading edge Telco to be part of the supply of Australia’s 5G network.
Not only would the price differential between Huawei and its competitors such as Ericcson and NOKIA be up to 30pc more favourable, but Huawei’s technology has been consistently ahead of its competitors.
Huawei is a major player in Canada, Britain, France, Italy and Africa and operated with full transparency, ethics and within the laws of each country.
Tom Uren, a cyber security expert says that the 5G network and the NBN will together form the spinal chord of the Australian economy - which needs the highest levels of trust, reliability and security of these networks.
Most countries have managed to embrace Huawei’s technology within their own national security network - and there is no reason why Australia can’t do the same says
(CEO, John Lord (rear Admiral of Navy , Chairman of DMS Maritime Services Pty Ltd and a member of the Victorian Government’s Defence Council as well as other State Government Boards. )
The question is ... who can you trust?
USA suppliers - who have just been the centre of major data security breeches re Facebook and Elections , or Data beeeches with Equifax - where 10million records of USA citizens credit cards and social security numbers and personal details are sitting somewhere in the dark cloud.
USA has placed trade restrictions on Huawei and ZTE and other Chinese companies to protect and grow their USA companies.
Huawei’s chairman, John Brumby (former Treasurer and Premier of Victoria) says if China's growth slows as a result of America's trade tariffs, the consequences for Australia will be immense. Mr Brumby has emphasised the perils of economic protectionism, saying tariffs on China - Australia's largest trading partner across ten categories - will be detrimental to the global and national economy.
China is a great contributor to the Australian economy on so many levels, and we should embrace them as a Global Partner!
My view is that protectionism is not healthy - and does not come from a place of being “part of a global community”
We are a global economy, and we need to collaborate, learn and grow together.
What do you think?
Wednesday, June 13, 2018
The Bob Pritchard Column
Ben and Jerry’s, a company committed to cooling down global warming, is the first major retailer to create a carbon-credit system using blockchain tokens. The tokens can be traded on a distributed, open-source blockchain exchange run by start-up Stellar.
Ben and Jerry’s have built carbon credits into every scoop of ice cream purchased, a departure from existing carbon credits that are usually only sold in massive quantities to companies. Blockchain-based “micro-transactions” now make the same system possible for individuals.
Ben and Jerry’s will contribute a penny per cone to offset emissions. and offer customers the chance to donate a penny of their own. They hope to offer individual consumers an app to track their carbon offsets.
The blockchain ledger creates a more efficient and transparent method for exchanging the valuable certificates tied to reducing greenhouse gas emissions. YBlockchain, the electronic ledger technology underpinning bitcoin, has been used to address pollution and energy consumption in the past; now it is being used to attack global warming and deforestation.
Regulators are yet to determine what kind of instrument the tokens represent (i.e., a security or a commodity). That will then inform who and how individuals and/or corporations are eligible to buy it.
The tokens will represent a portion of carbon credits, which are issued by governments under cap-and-trade programs set up over the past decade or so to limit the amount of carbon dioxide or other greenhouse gases companies emit. A carbon credit is equal to one metric tonne of carbon dioxide, so companies that emit fewer greenhouse gases and thereby underuse their allotted credits can trade them privately or on exchanges to others expecting to exceed their limit. The purpose of cap-and-trade is to push companies to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions by "capping" the amount they can emit and allowing them to "trade" excess credits.
The process of calculating carbon emissions and trading credits, however, is a manual, time consuming and expensive process. Through the use of a permissioned blockchain, the use of fossil fuels could be tracked at the same time carbon credits are traded.
Deforestation – the clearing of forests and green areas – is responsible for more carbon emissions than the sum total of all cars and trucks on the road. The purpose behind REDD+, which stands for Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation, is to make trading carbon credits more valuable to corporations than developing large swaths of rainforests -- typically by burning the trees.
A blockchain-based ledger that allows carbon credit data to be freely shared among corporations would go a long way toward reducing complexity. There is currently a lot of friction involved in trying to purchase them and use them to offset a carbon footprint. The blockchain exchange will create trust through transparency in trading since anyone on the permissioned electronic ledger will be able to verify the carbon credits exchanged.
Thursday, June 7, 2018
The Bob Pritchard Column
Starting July 1, Estonia, population 1.5 million, will allow all its citizens to travel from one end of the country to the other without ever buying a ticket. A wonderful idea with great economic benefits.
The move to free public transportation builds on a scheme already in place in the capital, Tallinn, where public transit on the city’s buses, trams, trolley buses and trains was made fare-free for city residents back in 2013. Now, the government is rolling out free bus travel across the country.
Free journeys will be available for all Estonians using county buses, and enhanced subsidies will make tickets on the state-owned rail network considerably cheaper. It is the largest national free public transportation scheme in the world. It’s aimed chiefly at giving people on low incomes greater mobility to find work, but it also has an environmental impact, cutting carbon emissions by reducing the number of cars on the road.
A study of the fareless scheme by the Netherlands Delft University of Technology during its first year identified a 14 percent increase in the use of public transit, a 10% decrease in car usage and evidence that free travel helped low-income and unemployed residents as they became more mobile. A great result for just the first year.
The city’s own public satisfaction surveys show low-income groups are very happy with free bus travel as it enables them to look for and take jobs in a wider area than they would be able to access by walking.
The study found that while the rise in public transit usage mainly came from extra journeys by people already using the system and people who previously walked, a 10% reduction in year one is significant. They have also taken several measures to reduce car usage along with free public transport ― special bus lanes, more bike racks to encourage cycling, and they have also raised on-street parking fees and reduced parking places.
The price of public transport is seldom the reason car users switch over to public transport, but making the car more expensive to use, that’s key to making an impact. But you also have to make public transport attractive. Having a good system requires a long-term commitment.
Funding a transit system that is not only free but also widespread and efficient enough to accommodate lots of people undoubtedly poses a challenge, but that’s not stopping other European countries from considering similar fare-free schemes.
Paris has commissioned a study to look at the pros and cons of making public transit free and in Germany to tackle air pollution and avoid EU fines, Five major cities will try out free public transit schemes by the end of 2018. A free-ride zone in downtown Seattle came to an end in 2012 after the city decided it could longer afford it. Hasselt in Belgium reintroduced fares in 2013 after 16 years of providing free bus travel.
Free public transport is beneficial for the whole of society, not only those who use public transportation. It is an especially important idea in poor and more unequal societies, because without assistance for mobility, some people will be prevented from having access to resources ― to jobs, culture and leisure opportunities.
If we can provide $25 billion, that's 25 thousand million, in subsidies to the petroleum industry, surely we can throw a few scraps to provide free public transport