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Suspect wanted in three feces-throwing incidents arrested

BT Toronto | posted Wednesday, Nov 27th, 2019

Toronto police say the suspect wanted in three separate incidents in which a bucket of feces was dumped on a person over the past four days has been arrested.

The first incident happened at the University of Toronto’s Robarts Library on Friday, where a man assaulted a woman and a young person and poured a bucket of “liquefied fecal matter” he was carrying onto them while they were seated in the library.

In the second incident, a man assaulted a man and woman at York University’s Scott Library and again dumped a bucket of feces on one of them on Sunday around 5 p.m.

The third incident occurred outside a building at the University of Toronto shortly before midnight on Monday. Investigators once again said a bucket of feces was dumped on a female on the street. The orange bucket from Home Depot was left at the scene.

Samuel Opoku, 23, of Toronto was arrested in the Queen Street West and Spadina Avenue area on Tuesday evening.

Tips from the public led to the arrest. A police source told 680 NEWS the suspect was arrested at a shelter after someone recognized him from photos and called authorities.

Opoku has been charged with five counts each of assault with a weapon and mischief interfering with property.

He is scheduled to appear in court on Wednesday.

Don’t be alarmed: emergency alert system test coming Wednesday

THE CANADIAN PRESS | posted Wednesday, Nov 27th, 2019

OTTAWA — Don’t be alarmed — it’s only a test.

Provincial and territorial emergency management systems will send test signals to your wireless device Wednesday, as well as to radio and TV stations.

Depending on where you live, the tests will be conducted mid-morning or early afternoon in every part of the country except Nunavut.

The emergency alerts have become a familiar sound since the national public alert system was first tested in early 2018.

Since January, Canada’s telecom regulator says 125 emergency messages have been issued, warning Canadians of potentially life-threatening situations including tornadoes, floods and Amber Alerts.

Some of the alerts were issued late at night, prompting a few people to complain that they are an annoyance — and face a massive backlash on social media from others who support the alerts.

Woman seriously injured in Ajax hit-and-run

BT Toronto | posted Wednesday, Nov 27th, 2019

Durham police are searching for a vehicle involved in a hit-and-run in Ajax Tuesday night.

According to police, a woman, believed to be in her 20s, was struck on Taunton Road, east of Salem Road, at around 8:30 p.m.

She was taken to hospital with serious, but not life-threatening injuries.

Police say they don’t have a description of the vehicle involved, but debris and car parts were found at the scene.

UN: `Quick wins’ needed to keep climate goals within reach

JAMEY KEATEN AND FRANK JORDANS AND THE ASSOCIATED PRESS | posted Tuesday, Nov 26th, 2019

GENEVA — Countries have procrastinated for too long and need to begin making steep cuts to their greenhouse gas emissions immediately, or risk missing agreed targets for limiting global warming, top United Nations officials said Tuesday.

The appeal by Inger Andersen, who heads the U.N. Environment Program, and others came days before governments gather in Madrid for an annual climate change meeting.

“We need quick wins to reduce emissions as much as possible in 2020,” Andersen said, as her agency published its annual `emissions gap’ report showing the amount of planet-heating gases being pumped into the atmosphere hitting a new high last year, despite a near-global pledge to reduce them.

“We need to catch up on the years in which we procrastinated,” she said.

Over the coming decade, worldwide emissions of carbon dioxide, methane and other greenhouse gases will have to drop more than 7% each year to stop average global temperatures from increasing by more than 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 Fahrenheit) this century compared with pre-industrial times, the agency said. Scientists say that target — contained in the 2015 Paris climate accord — would prevent many of the more dramatic consequences of global warming.

“What we are looking at is really that emissions need to go down by 55 per cent by 2030,” said John Christensen, lead author and director of the UNEP-Danish Technology Institute Partnership. He warned that CO2 levels have begun to rise again after several years of stabilization.

“If you look at the global emissions, they are still going up,” he told journalists at a briefing in Geneva. “(Carbon dioxide) has started to increase again, and it doesn’t look too good.”

Even the less ambitious goal of capping global warming at 2C (3.6 F) would require annual emissions cuts of 2.7% between 2020 and 2030, the UNEP said.

As part of the Paris Agreement, countries agreed to review their efforts for cutting greenhouse gases by 2020.

Current national pledges would leave the world 3.2 degrees Celsius (5.8 Fahrenheit) warmer by 2100 than pre-industrial times, with dramatic consequences for life on Earth, the U.N. agency said, adding that getting the world back on track to 1.5 C would require a fivefold increase in measures pledged so far.

“The world is facing a climate emergency. It cannot be solved by governments alone,” said Katia Simeonova of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. “2020 is our last best chance to turn the tide,” she told the Geneva news conference.

Last week, UNEP published a separate report which found that countries are planning to extract more than twice the amount of fossil fuels from the ground than can be burned in 2030 if the 1.5C target is to be met.

“(What) countries are saying about supply doesn’t match up with what they’re saying about reducing emissions,” said report co-author Michael Lazarus, a senior scientist at the Stockholm Environment Institute.

This includes countries like the United States which, despite announcing its withdrawal from the Paris accord, claims to be reducing emissions even as it expands oil and gas production. But it also holds true for countries that tout their green credentials, such as Norway, which continues to drill for oil in the North Sea.

Christensen, the lead author, said the main cause of a recent increase in carbon dioxide emissions was economic growth in developing countries.

Officials appealed to governments that have already laid out targets for reducing their emissions to see if they can do more, and insisted that industries like power, transport, building and shipping can find opportunities to lower their emissions too.

“As individuals, we have a choice about how we live, what we eat and how we go about our business … and opportunities to live a lower-carbon life,” added Andersen.

Experts agree that the longer countries continue burning fossil fuels, the more warming will be “locked in” as emissions stay in the atmosphere for years or even decades.

Conversely, the sooner countries take steps to wean themselves off gas, coal and oil — such as by ending government subsidies for fossil fuels — the more warming will be prevented in the long term.

“If you’re in a hole, you should start to stop digging,” said Niklas Hagelberg of the U.N. Environment Program.

What parents need to know about teachers’ administrative work-to-rule campaign

CRISTINA HOWORUN | posted Tuesday, Nov 26th, 2019

After months of negotiations, teachers and educational workers from the two biggest teachers’ unions — The Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation (OSSTF) and the Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario (ETFO)  — will be engaging in an administrative work-to-rule campaign as of Nov. 26.

What does this mean for parents?

If your child attends a public elementary or public high school, their teachers will be engaging in work action. This means that their teachers and educational workers will not:

  • Attend after hours meetings
  • Provide individualized comments on report cards
  • Engage in EQAO preparations
  • Attend professional development events for ministry or board initiatives, but they will continue to engage in self-directed professional development.

What will not be disrupted?

  • Classes — they will continue as usual
  • Sports, clubs and after-school activities led by teachers will continue
  • Grades will continue to be issued and assignments will be marked

What happens next?

  • Teachers’ federations have several negotiating dates scheduled with the minister of education over the next few weeks
  • If a deal isn’t reached, teachers could choose to take further strike action. If that is the case, parents will have a minimum of five days notice before a strike begins.

Elementary, high school teachers start work-to-rule campaigns

THE CANADIAN PRESS | posted Tuesday, Nov 26th, 2019

Teachers in Ontario’s public elementary and high schools won’t be performing some administrative work starting today as part of work-to-rule campaigns.

They say months of contract talks with the government have produced little progress.

The tasks the teachers will stop performing include putting comments on report cards, attending certain meetings and participating in standardized testing.

Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation president Harvey Bischof says nothing will affect the quality of the students’ learning environment.

The union has talks scheduled with the province on Wednesday and Thursday, and Bischof says escalating the strike after that point is possible.

Education Minister Stephen Lecce said the government has been reasonable in contract talks, scaling back increases to class sizes and mandatory e-learning requirements.

The government announced in the spring that they were increasing average high school class sizes from 22 to 28 over four years and requiring four online credits to graduate. In recent weeks, it has offered a class-size increase to 25 instead, and dropped the e-learning requirement to two courses.

3rd feces-throwing incident reported outside U of T

BT Toronto | posted Tuesday, Nov 26th, 2019

A third incident in which feces were dumped on a person has been reported outside University of Toronto.

Toronto police say they were called to a street near University Avenue and College Street just before midnight Monday.

A bucket of feces was reportedly dumped on a girl near a University building.

The suspect, described as a man in his 30s wearing a yellow construction hat, a blue shirt and gloves, fled eastbound on College Street.

This is the third incident in which feces have been dumped on someone in or near a Toronto university since late last week.

A student studying in York University’s Scott Library had a bucket of “liquified fecal matter” dumped on them on Sunday around 5 p.m.

The suspect has been described as a man in his 20s with a medium build. He was wearing a black hat, blue top, light-coloured pants and black gloves.

A similar incident happened at U of T’s Robarts Library and police are still working to determine if the two incidents are connected.

They have also yet to provide any details on whether this third incident is related.

Man injured in stabbing outside Brampton home

News Staff | posted Monday, Nov 25th, 2019

A 46-year-old man is in hospital after a stabbing outside a Brampton residence on Sunday evening.

Emergency crews responded to a call in the area of Bear Run Road and Elbern Markell Drive at around 7:20 p.m.

Peel police said the stabbing took place on the driveway of the victim’s home on Bear Run Road.

The victim was taken to a trauma centre in critical condition. His condition had improved to stable by Monday morning.

Police are searching for three suspects who ran from the scene.

“There were three individuals who were wearing masks at the time of this incident, who then fled once they’d stabbed the victim,” Const. Akhil Mooken said.

Investigators are asking anyone with information to contact them directly or leave an anonymous tip with Crime Stoppers.

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