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Saturday , 25 March 2017

Monthly Archives: November 2015

Walkable neighbourhoods again linked to lower diabetes rates

New evidence that lifestyle choices such as walking more and driving less have a large impact on our health has been released to coincide with the World Diabetes Congress being held in Vancouver. The information about Vancouver residents and the neighbourhoods they live in was collected over two years by the My Health My Community Project. More than 22,000 residents took part in the study. A key finding is that those who live in more walkable neighbourhoods are less likely to be overweight or obese, or to suffer from diabetes related to weight. Those who live in car-dependent suburbs, on the other hand, are more likely to be overweight and ... Read More »

Bill Gates launches Breakthrough Energy Coalition, hopes for “an energy miracle”

Climate change is, in the end, a business problem, albeit a massive one. All that is needed to solve the problem is some serious R&D funded by some serious investment, right now. The present energy model is broken, the solutions proposed are inadequate, and there is no time to waste. Bill Gates, of Microsoft and philanthropic fame, has pledged $2 billion of his own fortune to help solve this problem, the core of which is how to replace the world’s current energy production and consumption model so that the world’s environment is not damaged any further, while continuing to provide the vast amounts of energy the world needs in order ... Read More »

CMHC reports solid third quarter results, expects oil fallout in Prairies

Considering the state of the oil industry these days, one might expect that a lot of home owners in Alberta could be in trouble with their mortgages. As it happens, that isn’t necessarily true, at least not yet (and hopefully never). Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation released its third quarter financial results today, and as of September 30, the number of Canadians in arrears with their mortgages was 0.35 per cent. This is around the long-term norm for arrears, and is a reflection, CMHC says, of the strength of its portfolio. Surprisingly, the arrears rate in Alberta was actually lower than the national average, at just 0.28 per cent. Just ... Read More »

Land value capture a grand idea, complex in practice

“Would you like to reduce traffic congestion, promote business, improve public services and boost revenues? How about making your city more livable, economically competitive, and environmentally and socially sustainable?” Yes! Who wouldn’t want that? These are the tantalizing, promise-laden opening words of a World Bank-sponsored book on the subject of how cities can finance transit-oriented development with land values. Cities can achieve these Utopian goals in part, it says, by “capturing the benefits of higher land values around urban transit stations and corridors.” Developers contribute to the construction costs, and the city derives more revenues from the higher land values, as well as from the new shops and other developments ... Read More »

All the way to the bank: Canada’s financial services industry strong, profitable

Canada’s financial services sector is innovative, very profitable, and a strong source of growth for the Canadian economy, outpacing all other sectors in financial results, international trade and investment performance. Approximately 780,000 people work in financial services, including banking and credit unions, insurance, asset management, securities, exchanges, and back office operations. Toronto is the centre of Canada’s financial services sector, with about one-third of all employment and more than 30 per cent of all headquarters located here. When support services like accounting and consulting, legal and computer services are included, the sector supports about 358,000 jobs in Toronto and generated $15.7 billion in tax revenues for the three levels of ... Read More »

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