Ryan Fullerton took advantage of a small field to capture his first ever Zone One West Kootenay Junior Golf tour title Sunday at the Nakusp course. “Ryan played solid golf all day and sealed the victory sticking his approach on 18 to five feet and then making the birdie putt,” said zone coordinator Rob McKay.”Ryan has played the circuit for three years and he was well deserving of the win.”Brenan Moroney of Rossland/Trail won the 17-18 division while in the 15-16 category Brett Mengler of the host Nakusp course took first ahead of Amber Arnold from Castlegar.The 14 and under division went to a playoff with Braden McKay from RTCC beating Carson Arcuri from Granite Point on the second playoff hole. On the first playoff hole Carson made a fantastic par save from the bunker, but on the second hole of the playoff his approach ran through the green and he was not able to get up and down. In the Net division the McInnes brothers from Nakusp took honors. Nathyn McInnes took the 15 – 18 year old division with a net 67 and Dugan the 14 and under with a net 63. In the skill prizes Brenan Moroney and Braden McKay both dominated. Both kids won the KP and LD in their age divisions.
Stephen F. Austin sophomore and Southland Male Newcomer of the Year Charles Mathenge finished the course in a time of 29:58 – roughly a 4:50 mile pace – to break his second school record of the season and capture a seventh-place finish. The Ol Kalou, Kenya, native also owns the school record in the 8K (23:42) after his runner-up performance at the Conference Championships on Nov. 3. Mathenge also earns a spot in the upcoming NCAA National Championship race and is a NCAA All-Region honoree. The NCAA Division I Cross Country Championship selection show will take place tomorrow afternoon at 2 p.m. CT, and will stream live on NCAA.com. Lamar freshman runner Minttu Hukka was the top Southland women’s finisher as she placed 14th in the 6K race with a time of 20:43.6 and took home NCAA All-Region honors. Hukka was named Southland Freshman and Athlete of the Year after winning the Conference Championship race on Nov. 3. Hukka was followed by teammate and first team all-conference selection Leigh Lattimore, who finished 17th in 20:52. Lamar’s Verity Ockenden, a first team all-conference selection, also finished in the top 25 with a time of 21:02.6. Lattimore and Ockenden each were NCAA All-Region honorees. FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – The Lamar men’s cross country team finished third at the NCAA South Central Regional hosted by Arkansas Friday afternoon, while the Lamar women came in fourth. Lamar’s Sam Stabler and Stephen F. Austin’s Charles Mathenge each punched a ticket into the NCAA National Championships with their top-10 individual finishes at the regional race. Three Southland women’s runners placed in the top 25 and claimed NCAA All-Region honors, while Lamar had a fourth-place team finish. Southland runner-up Stephen F. Austin came in ninth, McNeese State 13th, Sam Houston State 15th, Houston Baptist 18th and Texas A&M-Corpus Christi 19th. A total of ten Southland men’s and women’s runners earned NCAA All-Region honors after finishing in the top 25 of the NCAA Regional race. Lamar senior runner Sam Stabler, who was Southland Conference Male Athlete of the Year and league champion, ran the Agri Park 10K course in 29:35.9. Stabler ran a personal career best 10,000-meter time and claimed NCAA All-Region honors. The Leicester, England (Ratcliffe College), native finished third out of 152 total runners and 23 teams to earn a spot in the NCAA National Championships Nov. 22 in Terre Haute, Ind. Men’s ResultsWomen’s Results Lamar’s Jan Lukas Becker and Southland Male Freshman of the Year finished the race course 12th in a time of 30:09.6 and earned NCAA All-Region honors. Central Arkansas’ Jonathan Burgess came in 16th, Stephen F. Austin’s Cody Brown 19th, Texas A&M-Corpus Christi’s Philipp Baar 20th and Lamar’s Alex Dunbar 24th, each claiming a spot on the NCAA All-Region list. Seven Southland men’s runners finished in the top 25 and earned NCAA All-Region honors as Lamar and Stephen F. Austin had top-five team finishes. Lamar’s third-place finish was followed by Stephen F. Austin in fifth place. McNeese State men and Central Arkansas men finished ninth and 10th, while Texas A&M-Corpus Christi came in 13th, Sam Houston State 17th, and Houston Baptist 21st. A total of 31 teams compete as a team at the NCAA Division I Championships with 18 automatic bids from the top two teams at each regional, 13 bids are at-large. After teams have been determined, 38 additional individuals per gender are selected. After teams have been determined, 38 additional individuals per gender are selected to compete. From those teams not selected in the above process, the top four finishers at each regional are automatically selected but must have finished within the top 25 of the region. Two additional athletes will be selected from the remainder of the national pool as at-large individuals but must have finished in the regional top 25.
Popular in the CommunitySponsoredSponsoredOrangutan found tortured and decapitated prompts Indonesia probeEMGIES17 Jan, 2018We will never know the full extent of what this poor Orangutan went through before he died, the same must be done to this evil perpetrator(s) they don’t deserve the air that they breathe this has truly upset me and I wonder for the future for these wonderful creatures. So called ‘Mankind’ has a lot to answer for we are the only ones ruining this world I prefer animals to humans any day of the week.What makes community ecotourism succeed? In Madagascar, location, location, locationScissors1dOther countries should also learn and try to incorporateWhy you should care about the current wave of mass extinctions (commentary)Processor1 DecAfter all, there is no infinite anything in the whole galaxy!Infinite stupidity, right here on earth.The wildlife trade threatens people and animals alike (commentary)Anchor3dUnfortunately I feel The Chinese have no compassion for any living animal. They are a cruel country that as we knowneatbeverything that moves and do not humanily kill these poor animals and insects. They have no health and safety on their markets and they then contract these diseases. Maybe its karma maybe they should look at the way they live and stop using animals for all there so called remedies. DisgustingConservationists welcome China’s wildlife trade banThobolo27 JanChina has consistently been the worlds worst, “ Face of Evil “ in regards our planets flora and fauna survival. In some ways, this is nature trying to fight back. This ban is great, but the rest of the world just cannot allow it to be temporary, because history has demonstrated that once this coronavirus passes, they will in all likelihood, simply revert to been the planets worst Ecco Terrorists. Let’s simply not allow this to happen! How and why they have been able to degrade this planets iconic species, rape the planets rivers, oceans and forests, with apparent impunity, is just mind boggling! Please no more.Probing rural poachers in Africa: Why do they poach?Carrot3dOne day I feel like animals will be more scarce, and I agree with one of my friends, they said that poaching will take over the world, but I also hope notUpset about Amazon fires last year? Focus on deforestation this year (commentary)Bullhorn4dLies and more leisSponsoredSponsoredCoke is again the biggest culprit behind plastic waste in the PhilippinesGrapes7 NovOnce again the article blames companies for the actions of individuals. It is individuals that buy these products, it is individuals that dispose of them improperly. If we want to change it, we have to change, not just create bad guys to blame.Brazilian response to Bolsonaro policies and Amazon fires growsCar4 SepThank you for this excellent report. I feel overwhelmed by the ecocidal intent of the Bolsonaro government in the name of ‘developing’ their ‘God-given’ resources.U.S. allocates first of $30M in grants for forest conservation in SumatraPlanet4dcarrot hella thick ;)Melting Arctic sea ice may be altering winds, weather at equator: studyleftylarry30 JanThe Arctic sea ice seems to be recovering this winter as per the last 10-12 years, good news.Malaysia has the world’s highest deforestation rate, reveals Google forest mapBone27 Sep, 2018Who you’re trying to fool with selective data revelation?You can’t hide the truth if you show historical deforestation for all countries, especially in Europe from 1800s to this day. WorldBank has a good wholesome data on this.Mass tree planting along India’s Cauvery River has scientists worriedSurendra Nekkanti23 JanHi Mongabay. Good effort trying to be objective in this article. I would like to give a constructive feedback which could help in clearing things up.1. It is mentioned that planting trees in village common lands will have negative affects socially and ecologically. There is no need to even have to agree or disagree with it, because, you also mentioned the fact that Cauvery Calling aims to plant trees only in the private lands of the farmers. So, plantation in the common lands doesn’t come into the picture.2.I don’t see that the ecologists are totally against this project, but just they they have some concerns, mainly in terms of what species of trees will be planted. And because there was no direct communication between the ecologists and Isha Foundation, it was not possible for them to address the concerns. As you seem to have spoken with an Isha spokesperson, if you could connect the concerned parties, it would be great, because I see that the ecologists are genuinely interested in making sure things are done the right way.May we all come together and make things happen.Rare Amazon bush dogs caught on camera in BoliviaCarrot1 Feba very good iniciative to be fallowed by the ranchers all overSponsored Agriculture, Agroforestry, Archive, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Community Development, Conservation, Conservation Solutions, Development, food security, Forests, Poverty Alleviation, Sustainable Development Papua New Guinea’s predominantly agricultural society practices agroforestry — the cropping of useful fruit and nut trees with understory vines, shrubs and vegetables in a forest-mimicking system — widely.The practice produces a wide array of products for farmers, from areca nuts to coconuts and cacao, and is seen as a tool to address the country’s issues of rapid population growth and shrinking land resources.Farmers in the eastern province of Morobe are experimenting with different combinations of cash crops and trees to deal with disease challenges and to reduce labor.Agroforestry also sequesters carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and provides homes and forage for wild creatures here, ranging from boars to bandicoots. LAE, Papua New Guinea — Across the more than 600 islands that make up Papua New Guinea, the majority of the country’s culturally diverse population relies on agriculture for both food and income.But issues ranging from global market competition for cash crops such as coffee, to a shortage of manual labor, to waves of diseases that have heavily impacted important crops, have left many communities striving to diversify and improve what they grow.To do this, farmers in both the country’s rural highlands and lowlands, where 85 percent of the population live, are leaning on a traditional subsistence practice to improve their livelihoods: agroforestry.Bokson Kilau surveys his cacao crop, planted next to a series of gliricidia shade trees and the odd banana palm. Image by Camilo Mejia Giraldo for Mongabay.A sustainable systemAlready used by many communities around the world, agroforestry is seen as an increasingly important method of farming as it combines food crops and trees in a single area of land. By allowing for the production of food as well as things like timber, agroforestry can have a number of positive economic and environmental impacts. The practice supports biodiversity by mimicking natural forests, improves soil quality and diversifies the use of its nutrients, and sequesters far more carbon dioxide than monoculture crops.PNG’s traditional agroforestry is applied differently across the country and is shaped by a number of factors. These include geography, weather, tribal groups, types of crops grown, and, of course, amount of land available. Historically, more than 95 percent of the land in PNG has been under the control of traditional clans — a number that international organizations say has dropped to 85 percent as the government continues to grant special agricultural and business leases, or SABLs, to international companies.Despite these ongoing challenges, clans continue to distribute traditionally owned land through culturally diverse systems to members for their subsistence needs.These rich agricultural systems can generally be seen as intensely intercropped kai kai, or food, gardens, growing sustenance crops from yams to corn, taro, pineapples, bananas and peanuts, as well as income-generating cash crops species like coconut trees (Cocos nucifera) planted alongside cacao (Theobroma cacao), vanilla, and areca palms (Areca catechu), among many others.While traditional crops and staple foods remain, many have diversified these densely intercropped systems to increase their socioeconomic standing and deal with both external and internal pressures.In the mountains of the Eastern Highlands province, for example, farmers who previously relied on growing mostly coffee for a living are now cultivating citrus trees and strawberries next to casuarina trees; the latter provide important shade for seedlings in the short term and can be cut for construction material and firewood in the long term.In the northern Madang province, clans are increasingly looking to their established agroforestry systems to help alleviate growing population pressure on their food security and land, and to conserve their local environment.Cacao being dried in the Markham Valley. Image by Camilo Mejia Giraldo for Mongabay.But beyond easing the impact of social and dynamic market pressures, agroforestry has also helped communities in certain parts of the country deal with the impacts from nature.Disease strikes profitable cropsIn the vast savanna of Markham Valley, in PNG’s Morobe province, a disease that began sweeping the region in the early 2000s saw many communities lose their most profitable cash crop, the areca nut.“Back in 2007, insects just came and wiped them out,” says Jim Kelly, a farmer from the small village of Bampu.From his mother’s home garden, known in Bampu as a gom gain, Kelly points to a struggling areca palm growing next to a banana tree, a papaya tree, and over a series of cucumbers, pumpkins, and leafy greens known as aibika (Abelmoschus manihot).“We planted [the areca palm] to see how it would go, but I can already see that the nuts at the top of the palm are small. They still get sick,” he says.Commonly known in PNG as buai, the areca nut is a widely used traditional stimulant that can stave off hunger, increase focus, and impart a mild sense of euphoria. Apart from being linked to the rapid rise of mouth cancers throughout the country by the World Health Organization, the plant’s drupe, which is chewed in combination with a daka “mustard stick” dipped in crushed seashells, is arguably one of PNG’s most lucrative cash crops.Since the demise of the areca nut in Markham, Bampu and other communities in the area have turned their efforts toward harvesting coconuts, which sell at local markets for around 1 kina (about 30 U.S. cents) each, and cacao for chocolate, sold as either wet beans ($90 per bag) or as the more expensive fermented dry beans to local exporters for the equivalent of $180 a bag.In Bampu, both of these income-generating species can be found growing either alongside or within dense food crop systems that can include banana and mango trees, taro, corn, tomatoes, pumpkins and watermelons, as well as a fast-growing tree called gliricidia (Gliricidia sepium).Pineapples grow next to taro, pumpkins and banana trees in a Markham Valley agroforestry system. Image by Camilo Mejia Giraldo for Mongabay.According to Kelly, this agroforestry system has a number of tangible advantages that help the community maintain their incomes and ensure food security.The shade provided by gliricidia, he says, is vital for the development of young cacao seedlings. Once a cacao tree has matured, the gliricidia is cut down and used for firewood. Because of the time and energy required to manage the cash crops and the shade trees, the understory of pumpkins and watermelons also helps farmers keep down problematic weeds.The numerous home gardens and cash crop blocks also reflect the few forested areas that remain on the community’s land. The ones located further from the village tend to attract wild pigs, bandicoots and large birds of prey commonly found in the mountains that flank the valley floor.More importantly, Kelly says, planting different types of crops together ensures a good level of food security throughout the year, even during the intense dry seasons experienced in the 160-kilometer-long (100-mile) valley.“We like to plant everything in one block. When there is drought one crop dies but others survive,” he says.A cacao drying oven (“fermentary”). Image by Camilo Mejia Giraldo for Mongabay.Limits for small-scale farmersPNG exports its cacao largely to countries like Malaysia, the United States and Singapore, but it also supplies important chocolate-producing markets like Belgium. Although still far behind large producers in Africa, PNG has steadily increased its output of cacao to the world market over the past three years, fueled mostly by small-scale farmers across the country.“There has been an increase in cacao farming [in the Markham] area, both because of the price as well as the availability of buyers in the valley,” says Nathan Wampe, a forest environment researcher at Ramu Agri-Industries Ltd (RAIL). “There are about three new mayor buyers and previously there was only one.”Although Bampu and other communities across the Markham Valley have managed to maintain a relatively stable level of income by effectively bringing cacao into their agroforestry mix, their ability to further increase profits is limited as farming is still a largely manual task carried out by the family unit.According to Wampe, farmers in areas like Markham and the nearby Ramu Valley who are increasingly reliant on their cacao yields can be hindered by the gliricidia shade trees they use.“Gliricidia provides a good canopy of shade, but one of the issues with [this species] here is the labor. It grows really fast and you have to constantly prune it,” says Wampe, who is undertaking a community forestry project alongside the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR) and the University of Sunshine Coast in the Ramu and Marhkham valleys.“If you are just one person looking after this area [of cacao], during the rainy season [gliricidia] just grows out of proportion. You have to trim it continuously,” he says, adding that one of the aims of the ACIAR project — in partnership with RAIL — will be to promote the use of eucalyptus trees (Eucalyptus pellita) in combination with cacao crops.An Atzunas community member scrapes away bark from the gliricidia, which dries out the tree and helps farmers manage the fast-growing species. Image by Camilo Mejia Giraldo for Mongabay.This, he says, can ease the pressure on the communities in a number of ways.“If you look at [eucalyptus], you multiply the benefits of it. You have shade, materials for housing construction, and it’s a good fuel for firewood,” he says.Both the Ramu and Markham valleys have been heavily impacted by community and large-scale agriculture, including sugarcane, palm oil, and coconut plantations. With forested areas in the valleys and the surrounding mountains on the decline, communities are having to venture further into their remaining forest to gather materials traditionally used for housing.Buksong Kilau, a community leader from the village of Atzunas in the Markham Valley, is hopeful that projects like the ACIAR one can help his and other villages in the region develop their agroforestry systems and, in turn, improve their livelihoods.“Most of our income is from cacao, and [combining] with these new species of trees can help our future,” he says. He adds that members of his community have to walk for an entire day to get strong posts for their houses, while still needing to constantly tend to their food gardens and cash crops.For Wampe, one of the main challenges of agroforestry projects comes down to understanding the complex dynamics between communities and forestry, in order for adequate systems to be promoted that will provide both short- and long-term benefits.Jim Kelly in his mother’s diverse food garden. Image by Camilo Mejia Giraldo for Mongabay.“There are two issues: the communities would like income and they want posts [for construction]. The options are there, but the turnover time is quite long [for some tree species], it may take up to 10 years,” he says.“That’s one of the reasons we are trying out pellita [eucalyptus] with cacao. In a way, that does address both issues.”This article is part of Mongabay’s ongoing series on agroforestry worldwide.Banner image: Jim Kelly in the community of Bampu stands next to a young cacao tree within his mother’s food garden. Image by Camilo Mejia Giraldo for Mongabay.Editor’s note: While both the Ramu and Markham valleys have been heavily impacted by large-scale cultivation of sugarcane, palm oil, and coconut, the initial deforestation occurred due to a large population increase and subsequent heavy use of trees for firewood and construction materials.FEEDBACK: Use this form to send a message to the author of this post. Article published by Erik Hoffner
1 Everton striker Samuel Eto’o Everton striker Samuel Eto’o is poised to complete a move to Sampdoria following a successful medical with the Italian club.Former Champions League winner Eto’o arrived at Goodison Park just five months ago on a free transfer after being released by Chelsea.But the Cameroon hero has seen first-team opportunities limited with the struggling Toffees this season, who are just four point above the bottom-three, making just eight Premier League starts and scoring three goals.With doubts arising over his future on Merseyside, manager Roberto Martinez insisted earlier in January that none of the side’s key players will be leaving the club in the transfer window.However, reports last week suggested Eto’o had already accepted a 40 per cent pay cut to agree a 18-month contract with Samdoria.The deal appeared to have stalled with the Italians complaining about a lack of clarity in their dealings with Everton, but those issues now appear to have been resolved with Eto’o in Italy to wrap up his move.Pictured in a club polo shirt with the club doctor, he confirmed on Twitter: “Successful medical. Ready for a new challenge!!!”The Serie A outfit had earlier published the first picture of the Cameroon striker in their colours, along with the caption: “The first Blucerchiato smile for Eto’o at the end of his visit and waiting for his official introduction to Sampdoria.”The four-time African Footballer of the Year spent two seasons at Inter Milan and was a member of the 2010 treble-winning side that won the Serie A title, Coppa Italia and Champions League under Jose Mourinho.Sampdoria are looking to strengthen their forward line after selling top scorer Manolo Gabbiadini to Napoli earlier this month.The Genoa outfit, coached by Sinisa Mihajlovic, are fourth in Serie A, level on 33 points with third-placed Napoli at the halfway stage of the season.
CCH Tax Day ReportThe Connecticut Department of Revenue Services advises that the 2016 back-to-school sales tax holiday will be held from August 21 to August 27, 2016. During the holiday, many items of clothing and footwear sold for less than $100 are exempt from Connecticut sales and use tax. For items that cost $100 or more, sales tax is calculated on the full purchase price.Media Release, Connecticut Department of Revenue Services, August 5, 2016
Watch Serie A live in the UK on Premier Sports for just £11.99 per month including live LaLiga, Eredivisie, Scottish Cup Football and more. Visit: https://subscribe.premiersports.tv/ Juventus defender Daniele Rugani appears in line to make his first start of the season this evening against Genoa. Merih Demiral had been tipped to replace Matthijs de Ligt in Juve’s back four, but Calciomercato.com reports Rugani is winning the ballot. That is because, as per the website, the Italian was tried out by Maurizio Sarri in their final training session on Wednesday. The former Empoli stopper seemed to be on his way out of Turin over the summer, the signings of De Ligt and Demiral demoting him to fifth choice. Nonetheless, he could have a rare – but no less important – opportunity to stake his claim in the Bianconeri’s XI tonight.
Newcastle boss Benitez again blanked questions about transfersby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveNewcastle United boss Rafa Benitez has blanked questions about transfers after defeat to Manchester United.He has again indicated that “big money” players are the difference for Newcastle United in their battle against the top six in the Premier League.Benitez stated for the fourth Press conference running that he would not talk about transfers – sending out a worrying message to Newcastle fans.When asked if he knew how much he had to spend, Benitez said: “I will not talk about transfers.” TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say
BATON ROUGE, LA – NOVEMBER 11: The LSU Tigers play the Arkansas Razorbacks at Tiger Stadium on November 11, 2017 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)We’re a little more than two months away from the start of the 2016 season. LSU opens up against Wisconsin in Green Bay.If you’re a Tiger fan and you want to know what jersey numbers the freshmen will be wearing this fall, the program released them all today. Initial jersey numbers for the 2016 #LSU Signing Class. View the preseason roster: https://t.co/TcpUJD370t pic.twitter.com/HSX6RoJT0P— LSU Football (@LSUfootball) June 20, 2016LSU fans, which freshman are you most looking forward to seeing?
CALGARY – The new chief executive of Cenovus Energy Inc. unveiled plans for a leaner oilsands company Thursday, announcing hundreds of job cuts, lower-than-expected 2018 capital spending and the departure of three key executives.Alex Pourbaix, who replaced Brian Ferguson at the Cenovus (TSX:CVE) helm last month, said the company will move to get its financial house in order one year faster than planned under the previous regime.“We will build on the success of our divestiture program and work to exceed the goal, established in June of this year, of achieving $1 billion in cumulative capital, operating and general and administrative cost reductions with the aim of accelerating these reductions over the next two years instead of three,” he said in a statement.The announced target of a 15 per cent workforce reduction will translate to between 500 and 700 employees and contractors from a recent staff count of about 4,200, spokesman Brett Harris said.The bad news for Cenovus employees follows cuts of 1,500 staff in 2015 and 440 in 2016 in response to oil prices which tumbled from over US$100 per barrel in mid-2014 and have remained low.Financial analysts applauded Cenovus’s belt-tightening.Oilsands analyst Nick Lupick of AltaCorp Capital pointed out that Cenovus’s average production target of 493,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day in 2018, up four per cent from this year, is in line with expectations despite its capital spending budget of $1.6 billion coming in well below consensus estimates of $2.1 billion.The 2018 budget matches the $1.6 billion it expects to spend this year.The company plans to continue construction of a new 50,000-barrel-a-day phase at its Christina Lake oilsands project in northern Alberta, but will choke back other spending in both oilsands and conventional oil and gas operations.It plans to spend $270 million in 2018 on the Christina Lake expansion which is to begin producing in mid-2019. The company noted the capital cost is now expected to be about $675 million, one-fifth lower than previously estimated.Harris said the deferral of work on growth projects will allow the company to reduce staff in those areas.It will also reduce workers as it completes the sale of four major asset packages and looks to sell a package of non-core conventional assets in the Deep Basin on the northern Alberta-B.C. border. The four deals are to bring in a total of $3.7 billion to help pay for the buyout of most of the Canadian assets of Cenovus’s Houston-based oilsands partner, ConocoPhillips, for $17.7 billion earlier this year.Other cuts will come from efficiencies across the company, Harris said.Cenovus announced Thursday that Kieron McFadyen, president for upstream oil and gas, would leave the company next month and his role would be absorbed by Drew Zieglgansberger, executive vice-president for the Deep Basin.It also said Bob Pease is leaving his position as downstream president and director of U.S. operations and his role will be assumed by Keith Chiasson, who heads up oilsands production operations.Ivor Ruste, the company’s chief financial officer since it was spun off from EnCana Corp. in 2009, is to retire in April. A search has been launched to find a replacement.Harris said the executive changes were decided upon following meetings between Pourbaix and senior managers.Pourbaix was chief operating officer for pipeline company TransCanada Corp. until last spring.Follow @HealingSlowly on Twitter.
LONDON – Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is promising to do a better job protecting user data following reports that a political consultant misused the personal information of millions of the company’s subscribers. The fact is, European regulators are already forcing him to do so.A similar data breach in the future could make Facebook liable for fines of more than $1.6 billion under the European Union’s new General Data Protection Regulation, which will be enforced from May 25. The rules, approved two years ago, also make it easier for consumers to give and withdraw consent for the use of their data and apply to any company that uses the data of EU residents, no matter where it is based.The law is the latest attempt by EU regulators to rein in mostly American tech giants who they blame for avoiding tax, stifling competition and encroaching on privacy rights. European analysts say GDPR is the most important change in data privacy regulation in a generation as they try to catch up with all the technological advances since 1995, when the last comprehensive European rules were put in place. The impact is likely to be felt across the Atlantic as well.“For those of us who hold out no hope that our government will stand up for our rights, we are grateful to Europe,” said Siva Vaidhyanathan, a professor at the University of Virginia who studies technology and intellectual property. “I have great hopes that GDPR will serve as a model for ensuring that citizens have dignity and autonomy in the digital economy. I wish we had the forethought to stand up for the citizen’s rights in 1998 (the start of Google), but I’ll settle for 2018.”The U.S. has generally taken a light touch approach to regulating internet companies, with concerns about stifling the technology-fed economic boom derailing President Barack Obama’s 2012 proposal for a privacy bill of rights. But Europe has been more aggressive.EU authorities have in recent years taken aim at Google’s dominance among internet search engines and demanded back taxes from Apple and Amazon. The European Court of Justice in 2014 recognized “the right to be forgotten,” allowing people to demand search engines remove information about them if they can prove there’s no compelling reason for it to remain.Now data protection is in the crosshairs of the 28-nation bloc, where history has made the right to privacy a fundamental guarantee. Nazi Germany’s use of personal information to target Jews hasn’t been forgotten, and the new Eastern European members have even fresher memories of spying and eavesdropping by their former communist governments.In today’s world, digital commerce companies collect information on every website users visit and every video they like. This data is the lifeblood of social media sites that give users free access to their services in exchange for the right to use that intelligence to attract advertisers.But the Facebook scandal shows it can also be used for other purposes.A whistleblower this month alleged that Cambridge Analytica improperly harvested information from over 50 million Facebook accounts to help Donald Trump win the 2016 presidential election. News reports have focused on the relationship between Cambridge Analytica CEO Alexander Nix, former Trump strategist Steve Bannon and billionaire computer scientist Robert Mercer, who bankrolled the operation.Cambridge Analytica says none of the Facebook data was used in the Trump campaign. Facebook is investigating.“The regulation is trying to balance the power between ourselves as individuals and organizations that use that data for a whole variety of services,” said David Reed, knowledge and strategy director at DataIQ, a London-based firm that provides research on data issues.The EU’s new rules expand the reach of regulations to cover any company that processes the data of people living in the bloc, regardless of where the company is based. Earlier rules were ambiguous on this point, and international companies took advantage of that to skirt some regulation, the EU says.While Facebook is based in Menlo Park, California, it has some 277 million daily users in Europe out of 1.4 billion globally.The EU legislation also demands that consent forms are written in plain language anyone can understand. No more legalese across pages and pages of terms and conditions that few people read before clicking “I Agree.” The regulations also require that consent must be as easy to withdraw as it is to give.To ensure compliance, there’s the potential for big fines. Under GDPR, organizations face fines of up to 20 million euros ($25 million) or 4 per cent of annual global turnover — whichever is greater — for the most serious violations.Facebook reported $40.65 billion in revenue last year. That means a serious violation could cost the company as much as $1.63 billion.Even though GDPR doesn’t legally protect the data of people outside the EU, analysts expect many companies to apply the rules worldwide. Smaller firms are likely to decide it’s too expensive to run multiple compliance systems, though bigger firms like Facebook and Google may still decide to “bracket off” European operations, Vaidhyanathan said.Sarah T. Roberts, a professor of information studies at UCLA, says the EU is formulating the rules of engagement, rather than allowing internet companies to dictate. While U.S.-based platforms were created in the image of Silicon Valley, that type of bravado and no-holds barred capitalism doesn’t go down well in Europe.“Despite claims that cyberspace is not fettered to planet Earth, that is not true,” she said.Facebook, for one, has taken notice, setting aside a page of its website to explain what the company is doing to comply with GDPR. “We’ve built tools to help people manage their data and understand their choices with respect to how we use their personal data,” it says.But GDPR is not a panacea that will ensure everyone’s data is protected. Some analysts suggest the next step should be to ensure that everyone owns their own data and can sell it in exchange for services.Pressure is building for increased regulation in the U.S., where members of Congress have called on Zuckerberg to testify about the Cambridge Analytica scandal.The alleged conspiracy has captured the public imagination, focusing worldwide attention on data protection, Vaidhyanathan said.“Cambridge Analytica’s story sounds like a spy novel,” he said. “It has a bond villain in Alexander Nix. It has a secretive billionaire genius in Robert Mercer. It has the evil sidekick in Steve Bannon. It is working for right-wing interests and it claims to be able to control our minds,” he said. “We needed a few Bond villains to make the story lively.”