In light of the fact that the 30.3.11 interview that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu granted to websurfers on YouTube’s World View channel was highly successful in that it was viewed over 1 million times within two weeks, the Prime Minister has decided to make this a regular occurrence and will be in direct contact with websurfers around the world. This will be a unique project since Prime Minister Netanyahu will be the first head of government to be in continuous contact will websurfers, and will not suffice with isolated interviews only.
Upon launching the project, Prime Minister Netanyahu said that direct links with the Facebook generation around the world, but especially from the Arab world, are very important for becoming directly familiar with the true Israel.
Following the 30.3.11 YouTube interview, additional questions were received from websurfers, the Prime Minister’s answers to which may now be viewed on his official YouTube channel. The public is invited to send additional questions to Prime Minister Netanyahu in the form of video clips; he will regularly answer selected questions on his YouTube and Facebook sites. Questions may be uploaded directly to YouTube and the appropriate link sent to AskPMNetanyahu@gmail.com. Video clips with recorded questions may also be sent to the same address. Files should not be larger than 20 MB. Questions may be sent in any language.
Source: Israeli Prime Minister’s Office
HONOLULU (April 19, 2011) – Better Place today announced the initial deployment of its electric car network infrastructure in Hawaii. The installation of the first 10 charge spots across Oahu – five at the Sheraton Waikiki and five at three Hawaiian Electric sites – is the result of cross-sector partnerships between Better Place, Kyo-ya Hotels & Resorts (Kyo-ya), Starwood Hotels & Resorts Waikiki, Hawaiian Electric Company and the Hawaii Renewable Energy Development Venture.
“Better Place’s electric vehicle network is an innovative approach to integrating electric vehicles into our island grids,” said U.S. Senator Daniel Inouye.“This network made up of federal, state and private sector investments is transforming Hawaii’s transportation system into one powered by clean energy from electricity instead of imported oil.I am pleased to have been able to play a small role in reaching this important milestone.”
The project includes seven electric cars. Kyo-ya will operate two of them and Hawaiian Electric will own five of the cars. The cost of this pilot project is approximately $1.1 million, of which about $500,000 in funding was provided through the U.S. Department of Energy and the
Hawaii Renewable Energy Development Venture.
“This partnership between different business sectors is a great example of working togetherto move Hawaii in the direction of energy independence,” Governor Neil Abercrombie said. “Through this collaborative effort we are one step closer to being less dependent on fossil fuels while creating jobs in green technology and keeping money in our local economy.”
“The electrification of transportation will speed the adoption of renewable energy in Hawaii,” said Jason Wolf, Vice President, Better Place North America. “At scale, batteries in electric cars and in our battery switch stations serve as a distributed energy storage network, allowing Hawaiian Electric to tap into the rich diversity of renewable energy sources here. As such, Better Place plays a critical role in helping the State reach its policy objectives as well as creating local jobs.”
Kyo-ya is the first in Hawaii’s visitor industry to participate in this electric car charging network and will use the electric cars as fleet vehicles and shuttles to transport VIP guests between the airport and its four Waikiki hotels.
Hawaiian Electric Company has purchased five electric cars and has installed five chargers as part of this landmark project. The electrification of transportation will allow the utility to bring more renewable energy to the grid.
In the initial pilot phase of the Better Place charging network, the Hawaii Natural Energy Institute of the University of Hawaii will track usage, recharge performance, and grid and driver behavior.
The launch of the electric car charging network “supports the clean-energy goals that
Governor Abercrombie and President Obama have for our state and nation,” said Brian Goldstein, Director, Better Place Hawaii. He added that it marks Better Place’s first in-the-ground milestone not only in Hawaii, but in the United States. “Hawaii can be proud to be showing our nation the way toward a sustainable transportation future,” he said.
About Better Place
Better Place, the world’s leading electric car services provider, is accelerating the global transition to sustainable transportation. Better Place is building the infrastructure and intelligent network to deliver a range of services to drivers, enable widespread adoption of electric cars, and optimize energy use. The Better Place network addresses historical limitations to adoption by providing unlimited driving range in a convenient and accessible manner. The company works with all parts of the transportation ecosystem, including automakers, battery suppliers, energy companies, and the public sector, to create a compelling solution. Based in California and privately held, Better Place has operating companies in Israel, Denmark, and Australia. More information is availableat www.betterplace.com.
Olympic officials from both sides meet in Rome, reaffirm desire to build stronger ties but fail to make tangible breakthrough. Israel invites Palestinians to train together for 2012 London Games
Israeli and Palestinian Olympic officials reaffirmed their desire to build stronger ties Wednesday, but came away without any tangible breakthroughs during a “Sports for Peace” meeting in Italy.
The meeting was arranged by International Olympic Committee Vice President Mario Pescante as a follow-up to initial talks led by IOC President Jacques Rogge in January.
Palestinian Olympic Committee President Jibril Rajoub pushed for Israel to allow Palestinian athletes and coaches more freedom to travel from the West Bank and Gaza Strip, and to make it easier for visiting teams to play football friendlies.
“This is very important for the Palestinian people and I think it should also be important for the Israeli people,” Rajoub said. “The Palestinian players and athletes are not able to move inside the Palestinian territories and from the Palestinian territories to outside.”
Israeli Olympic Committee Secretary-General Efraim Zinger responded by calling for an end to instances of some athletes refusing to compete against Israelis, and invited the Palestinians to train together for next year’s London Games.
Zinger said he has invited the Palestinian Olympic team to one if its high-tech training centers.
“We are ready to host the Palestinian Olympic team and help them prepare for the 2012 London Games,” the Israeli said. “We already offered it and I hope that Mr. Rajoub will accept it.”
Zinger disputed Rajoub’s claims over travel restrictions.
“No, they can travel. It’s not a problem,” he said. “I’m talking on the sport level. We are ready to offer it, we are ready to execute it, we are ready to do it.”
Zinger said he hopes the day will come that both Palestinian and Israeli athletes will “share the same right as all the other athletes from around the world.”
“That Palestinian athletes will share free movement to practice, to compete, and Israeli athletes will be able to compete all around the world and be invited to all sport events. And that we will not see this non-sporting picture of an Israeli athlete waiting in the arena while his opponent from an Arab country, etc. refuses to compete with him.”
An Israeli basketball player was pelted with bottles by Turkish fans and forced to flee the court in 2009 and an Iranian swimmer refused to compete against an Israeli at the 2008 Beijing Olympics. In the 2004 Athens Games, an Iranian judo competitor refused to face an Israeli.
The Palestinians gained IOC recognition in 1993 and a Palestinian team competed in the Olympics for the first time in Atlanta in 1996. Still, only four Palestinian athletes competed at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, even though the team is entitled to additional help through the IOC’s solidarity program.
Rajoub cited two examples of how Israeli restrictions have curtailed sports development. He said the captain of the Palestinian football team, Gaza native Ahmed Kashkash, was not allowed to return home for 14 months, then was allowed in and has now been unable to leave again and resume his club career since March 10.
Rajoub, who is also the president of the Palestinian football association, also said that UEFA President Michel Platini sent him a supply of sports equipment that was kept in an Israeli port for 16 months.
“I had to pay $30,000 to release the equipment, and as far as I know even the price of the equipment was not more than $7,000 or $8,000,” he said “This is the situation. First the Israelis need to recognize the Palestinian sports entity, then I think everything is open, everything is possible.
“Sport should not know borders,” Rajoub added.
The Israeli and Palestinian delegations are due back at IOC headquarters in Lausanne, Switzerland, for more talks May 12.
Rome Mayor Gianni Alemanno hosted Wednesday’s meeting and awarded both delegations a prize.