24 October 2006Zambia has discovered its first-ever reserves of oil and gas near its border with Angola, and is inviting foreign companies to conduct exploratory drilling to investigate the potential of this new resource, the country’s government announced on Monday.An impoverished country to the north of Zimbabwe, Zambia currently relies on its reserves of copper as a source of foreign currency. This new find opens up the possibility of it enjoying a similar economic boom to neighbouring Angola, which has become Africa’s second-largest oil producer after Nigeria, with a GDP growth rate of around 19%.The Mail & Guardian website reports that samples taken at a dozen sites in the northwestern provinces of Zambezi and Chavuma have confirmed gas and oil residues. The discoveries were announced in a statement from the office of President Levy Mwanawasa, who visited the area on Sunday.“The microbial analysis showed that 12 sites were positive for oil and six for gas,” the website quoted Mwanawasa as saying.“These results confirm the presence of oil and gas in the sub-surface of the two districts of Chavuma and Zambezi.“It is hoped the country will see more exploration and extraction activities for oil and gas in different parts that would strengthen the country’s economy,” Mwanawasa said.He said exploration companies will determine the oil and gas reserves from the two districts before expanding the exercise to other parts of the country.The possibility of oil and gas reserves was first explored in 2004, after prolonged fires in the region prompted the Zambian government to launch an investigation.The size of the reserves is still unknown, but it is hoped that they can become a significant source of revenue in a country where about two-thirds of the population live on less than a dollar a day.SouthAfrica.info reporter Want to use this article in your publication or on your website?See: Using SAinfo material
Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest No significant changes this morning to our nearby forecasts. We have scattered showers and light rain hanging around through the day today and it will finally be moving away to the east tomorrow morning. We can see additional rain totals of .25”-.5” today in the heaviest areas, and a few hundredths to a tenth or two elsewhere. Rain coverage approaches 70% today.We turn drier tomorrow as rain leaves the region. Clouds linger over the state through at least the first half of the day, but we should see sunshine eventually win out. We are dry for all of Thursday and the start of Friday as well. Our next front is still on track for late Friday afternoon and evening, but it is showing less moisture as it moves through. Right now we are pulling rain totals back to a few hundredths to .25”, still over 90% of the state. This will be a welcome change, as it really will allow for shorter delays in fieldwork. Temps do move cooler behind the front.A nice dry window holds from Saturday afternoon through the balance of the weekend, Monday and Tuesday. Temps will slowly build from slightly below normal levels to near normal by the end of Tuesday.A strong cold front passes next Wednesday. This front brings rains of .5”-1” over 90% of Ohio. There can be some good thunderstorm action with this front. Rains finally end early Thursday morning. Models are starting to suggest this morning that this front could also be less impressive, much like our Friday front. However, we think that most of the lack of moisture is coming from a perceived lack of thunderstorm action, an idea we are not keen on leaving just yet. IF we see strong winds push up the leading edge of the front, there should be ample chances for instability to develop. So, we are leaving rain totals alone for now, but will continue to monitor.As mentioned yesterday, the extended period has a nice dry window from next Thursday afternoon right on through the 8th. Cooler Canadian air will be moving in for the period, but we still should be warm enough to spur decent evaporation and a return to fieldwork, so long as moisture stays at bay.
A $52 million project to rebuild the two main runways at Naval Air Station Jacksonville, widen taxiways and improve the airfield is halfway completed and remains on target to be completed in June.The last major overhaul of the runways at the installation, Florida’s oldest naval air station, occurred in 1967, reported the Florida Times-Union. The base opened in 1940.The work also includes demolition of three obsolete hangars from World War II, which will free up space to park the base’s new Boeing P-8A Poseidon aircraft as well as those arriving from other Navy bases for training at NAS Jacksonville. The P-8A reconnaissance aircraft are replacing the Navy’s aging Lockheed P-3 Orions.During the year-long project, the base’s 38 fixed-wing aircraft and 2,000 crews and civilian employees are operating out of Cecil airport, a general aviation airport run by the Jacksonville Aviation Authority.In 2010, officials envisioned a much smaller project to repair the runways. “But when the new engineers came out and looked at it again with more tests, we found it was not suitable for the new aircraft that were coming and we knew we had to make modifications,” airfield manager Doug Chaney told the Times-Union. Dan Cohen AUTHOR