Prof takes wind-power debate to affected community

On Friday, [the community group] DREAM (Designing Routes to Education And Mentorship) opened the doors of the Dunnville Secondary School cafeteria to welcome two knowledgeable speakers to debate on the topic of Industrial Wind Turbines [IWTs], wrote The Dunnville Chronicle Oct. 5.

José Etcheverry is a professor in the Faculty of Environmental Studies at York University. He received his PhD from the University of Toronto with a thesis focusing on green energy.

Etcheverry is a member of the Chairmen Committee of the World Council for Renewable Energy, participates in Windfall Ecology Centre and REAP Canada projects, co-chairs the Sustainable Energy Initiative and is the President of the Canadian Renewable Energy Alliance.

During Etcheverry’s opening statement he used a PowerPoint presentation to share data and visuals with the crowd, informing them that Dunnville was one of the first towns in the world to have electricity, stating "renewable energy powered your town a long time ago."

He focused on the negative repercussions of coal, oil, natural gas and nuclear power. [He showed] images of the polluted Athabasca River from the Oil Sands in Alberta, satellite photos of the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, and pointed out that while the Fukoshima Nuclear Plant was melting down, the wind turbines off the coast of Japan were still working and generating power.

Etcheverry tried to console Dunnville resident Pat Morris, telling her that he has lived in Denmark with his family, explaining, "If I could, I would live with my family on my own wind farm. I can only speak from the heart, and I would never do anything to endanger my family."

  •  It was a full house in the Dunnville Secondary School cafeteria Friday, Sept. 30 as people came to listen to the opinions of two professionals from both sides of the IWT issue, wrote the Sachem and Glanbrook Gazette Oct. 4. José Etcheverry, assistant professor at the Faculty of Environmental Studies of York University, took a more general position, pointing out the benefits of renewable energy and included solar and hydro into his argument along with wind.

Once the opposing speaker, John Laforet, president of Wind Concerns Ontario, took over the podium, he was quick to point out the flaws in Etcheverry’s presentation stating that the debate is about IWTs and not renewable energy in general.

Etcheverry, who often used cases in Denmark and Germany to rebut Laforet’s arguments, said his friends in Denmark who live near wind farms don’t understand the concerns Ontario residents have. "It makes a complementary source of income and there are no health concerns," said Etcheverry.

Picking stocks is better than blackjack, but don’t bet on them

From horse racing to stock market investments, there’s nothing quite so satisfying as possessing knowledge others don’t, wrote Postmedia News Oct. 5.

“The entire online trading – as opposed to investing – industry is based on the myth that you can outsmart your neighbour, who in turn believes that he can outsmart you,” says Moshe Milevsky, professor of finance in the Schulich School of Business at York University.

For those who subscribe to an inexpensive online stock picking service expecting to earn a fortune overnight, however, Milevsky offers his own prediction. “Sometimes you will win, most times you will lose and there’s a sucker born every minute,” he says. “Practically speaking, this sort of activity is preferable to playing blackjack at your local casino, or wagering on horses, because as a by-product you might learn some economics and finance along the way. Just make sure to keep your nest egg far away from it.”

York prof sees minimal impact from US-Canada border deal

A much-ballyhooed perimeter security deal between Canada and the United States will come with a $1-billion price tag for new border facilities and programs to make trade and travel easier, wrote The Canadian Press Oct. 5.

The deal is not expected to include full-scale harmonization of immigration and refugee policies – a possibility that has raised the hackles of critics who fear the deal will cede Canadian sovereignty to the Americans.

While the business community and many frequent travellers will likely welcome the changes, overall expectations are modest.

The Americans are distracted by deep economic problems at the moment – a crisis that will thwart serious efforts at continental integration, said Daniel Drache, a political science professor at York University [Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies] in Toronto. "I think it will be quite modest. I don’t see, at this time, any significant changes."

York/Osgoode grad is an anchor for CTV News Channel

After practising finance and corporate law for a number of years in both Toronto and London, England, Amanda Blitz [BA Spec. Hons. ’99, LLB ’03] left the legal world to become a journalist, wrote CTV News online Oct. 4.

She completed her master’s degree in journalism, graduating with honours from Columbia University in New York, while also interning at NBC’s Dateline.

Blitz got her start in broadcasting as a freelance legal analyst for Global News Morning. Years later she joined CHCH in Hamilton as a videographer, where she spent two years reporting, producing, editing and anchoring.

Blitz has lived all over the world, from Japan to Australia, Italy, England, New York and Washington, D.C. She received her undergraduate degree from [York University] and a LLB from [York’s] Osgoode Hall Law School. She has been reporting and anchoring at CTV News Channel Since July, 2011.

Off-air, Blitz enjoys keeping up with international current events, spending time with family and ballroom dancing.