A high-speed rail from L.A. to Las Vegas? China says it’s partnering with U.S. to build

For decades private developers and entrepreneurs have periodically announced bold plans to run high-speed trains between Las Vegas and Los Angeles.

None have gotten anywhere because they lacked money or suffered other setbacks.

On Thursday, however, one long-discussed proposal appeared to gain some intriguing support.

Officials for XpressWest, which has been unable to secure adequate private investors in the United States or a $5.5-billion federal loan, announced that it had formed a partnership with China Railway International USA, a consortium led by China Railway, the national railroad of the People’s Republic of China.

Details about the joint venture, the proposed project and its financing were unavailable Thursday, except China Railway International stated that it would provide initial capital of $100 million. Project officials say they are confident construction could begin as early as September 2016.

XpressWest, a private company formerly called DesertXpress, has been talking about its high-speed rail project since at least 2007. Plans have called for a 185-mile route that would run adjacent to heavily-traveled Interstate 15 from Las Vegas to Victorville, 85 miles northeast of downtown Los Angeles.

Chinese officials now describe the project as a 230-mile route with an additional stop in Palmdale and eventual service throughout the Los Angeles area using some of the same track that would be used by the publicly backed California high-speed rail project.

Federal railroad records indicate that XpressWest has already secured approvals and permits from a number of federal agencies for the 185-mile route. Additional permits, approvals and environmental analysis would be needed for the 230-mile proposal.

“As China’s first high-speed railway project in the United States, the project will be a landmark in overseas investment for the Chinese railway sector and serve as a model of international cooperation,” Yang Zhongmin, chairman of China Railway International, told the state-run Xinhua News Agency.

Chinese officials disclosed the joint venture during a news conference in Beijing. XpressWest representatives also issued a brief statement on their website, but declined to comment until additional regulatory approvals are obtained.

The announcements of cooperation come just days before Chinese President Xi Jinping’s state visit to the United States.

Read more » Los Angeles Times
See more » http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-vegas-la-chinese-high-speed-rail-20150917-story.html?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter

Pakistan envisions 40,000MW of nuclear power generation capacity: PAEC

BY DAWN.COM

VIENNA: Pakistan envisages nuclear power generation capacity of 40,000 Mega Watts (MW) under its Nuclear Energy Vision 2050 Chairman Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission Muhammad Naeem said, Radio Pakistan reported.

Addressing the 59th International Atomic Energy Agency General Conference in Vienna, Naeem said that the PAEC has chalked out a plan to generate 8,000MW of electricity through nuclear means in order to help the country overcome its energy crisis.

Read more » DAWN
See more » http://www.dawn.com/news/1207543/pakistan-envisions-40000mw-of-nuclear-power-generation-capacity-paec

At least 29 killed, including army captain, as militants attack PAF base in Peshawar

At least 29 people, including an army captain, were killed as militants attacked a heavily-guarded Pakistan Air Force base in Badhaber area on the outskirts of Peshawar early Friday morning, senior security officials said.

Confirming the attack, ISPR said 13 militants had been killed so far and a clearance operation was underway.

Of the 29 dead, 16 PAF soldiers were killed in a mosque as they offered morning prayers. Seven other PAF soldiers were killed in a barrack near the mosque. “A captain died leading the counter-attack against raiders and two soldiers were also killed,” DG ISPR said.

Read more » The Express Tribune
See more » http://tribune.com.pk/story/959024/militants-attack-pakistan-air-force-base-in-peshawar/