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UK Charity The Great North Air Ambulance To Accept Bitcoin Donations

Today, the Great North Air Ambulance Service (GNAAS), a vital air ambulance charity serving the North East, North Yorkshire, Cumbria, and the Isle of Man, has teamed up with CoinCorner, a leading Bitcoin and Lightning service provider, to accept Bitcoin donations on their website.

“We’re delighted to be working with the Great North Air Ambulance Service as they embrace Bitcoin,” said Danny Scott, CEO at CoinCorner. “A growing number of charities are realising the benefits of accepting bitcoin – from opening up to a world of borderless donations, to reducing the time and costs associated with traditional payment methods – this innovative and forward-thinking approach is changing the future of payments.”

The partnership with CoinCorner represents a significant step forward for GNAAS, as they become one of the first air ambulance services in the UK to accept Bitcoin donations. This innovative approach aims to leverage the benefits of Bitcoin, providing supporters with an alternative method to contribute to their life-saving mission.

Ashleigh Chapman, Head of Income and Engagement at GNAAS, shared her enthusiasm for the new initiative, stating, “At the Great North Air Ambulance Service, we strive for innovation in fundraising and want to make it as accessible as possible to donate to our life-saving cause. Bitcoin is an important element of today’s economy, and we hope that accepting donations will enable us to reach a wider range of supporters, increasing our income and allowing us to continue our vital work.”

Supporters of the Great North Air Ambulance Service who wish to contribute through Bitcoin can do so effortlessly by utilizing CoinCorner’s Bitcoin payment gateway to make secure and convenient donations. To make a Bitcoin donation to the Great North Air Ambulance Service, visit their dedicated donation page on their website here.

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Latin America’s land ‘defenders’ attacked most, rights group says

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Individuals trying to protect their land or the environment were killed at the rate of one every other day in 2022, led by deaths in Latin America, the human rights non-profit group Global Witness reported.

At least 177 people described as “defenders”, identified as those who were attempting to prevent their land or homes from environmental degradation, were victims of targeted violence last year, the group said.

In the decade since it started to document the deaths, the campaign group has recorded a total of almost 2,000 killings.

Although it was often difficult to establish the exact circumstances behind the attacks, about 10 per cent were linked to agriculture, mining and logging interests.

Global Witness said demand for minerals for renewable energy technology meant that parts of south-east Asia, such as northern Myanmar and neighbouring China, were now the sites of illegal mining, fuelling the violence.

“As demand outstrips supply, governments and companies move to take advantage of ‘new frontiers’ of opportunity in mining across the region — often without cleaning up problems at the root of the supply chain,” the group said. 

More than a third of victims in 2022 were indigenous, and about a fifth were small-scale farmers. However, lawyers and journalists have also become targets: Guardian contributor Dom Phillips and Brazilian indigenist Bruno Pereira were found shot while reporting on environmental abuses in Brazil.

Latin America accounted for 88 per cent of killings documented. The worst toll was in Colombia where 60 deaths were recorded, twice the number of the previous year. Brazil and Mexico followed with 34 and 31 fatalities each. In Asia, the Philippines accounted for most of the 16 deaths.

Political instability in parts of Latin America and Africa provided the backdrop to the deaths, campaigners said.

Ana Maria Rodriguez, director of the Colombian Commission of Jurists, said that in her country the delay to the implementation of the peace agreement between the government and the National Liberation Army had led to vacuums of authority where new armed groups preyed on land defenders. 

“The dynamics of the conflict have changed,” she said. “And in the middle of the combat are communities who have been left on their own.”

In West Africa, documentation of activist welfare was “serious and challenging” as the recent “upsurge in military takeovers has blown up the civic space,” said Peter Quaqua, from Green Advocates International, a Liberian environmental and human rights group.

Global Witness also noted that non-lethal attacks on activists were increasing, suppressing their efforts through intimidation and imprisonment. 

Chad Booc, a 27-year-old Filipino computer science graduate and advocate for the Lumad indigenous peoples, was accused in 2021 of kidnapping and radicalising children and imprisoned for three months before the charges against him were eventually dropped. A year later, he was found dead.

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SEC targets to strictly follow 45-day processing for IPOs

THE Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) will strictly adhere to the 45-day processing of initial public offerings (IPOs) as it aims to boost the country’s capital market.

“We are looking at being stricter about our 45-day processing for IPOs because we want to make it easier and we want to streamline the structure and process for IPOs in the future,” SEC Commissioner Kelvin Lester K. Lee said during a recent media roundtable in Makati City.

“There are minimal IPOs right now because of the interest rate environment, but we are foreseeing that IPOs will be a lot once that settles. We want to make sure that companies are ready for it, and we want to make sure that processing is much faster than before,” he added.

According to Mr. Lee, the previous average processing time was “a bit beyond the 45-day period” due to exchanges in documents that prolonged the process.

“The average before, as what I understand, is a bit beyond the 45 days. Usually, that is because, from the experience of our departments… there is often a lot of exchange of documentation. The process of IPOs is getting longer as a result. We want to make it streamlined, we want to make it faster,” Mr. Lee said.

Mr. Lee said the SEC will issue the necessary documentation informing the public of its strict adherence to the 45-day processing time for IPOs.

“We will be strictly adhering to a 45-day processing period. Technically, it is still internal rules but we will have to let the public know. That is something we want to signal to the public, that we are looking at making things easier in terms of capital markets,” Mr. Lee said.

On Aug. 24, the SEC approved and adopted the improved procedure for the processing of registration statements. The procedure adheres to the 45-day period for reviewing and processing the filed registration statements, with the SEC emphasizing adherence to Section 12.6 of the Securities Regulation Code. The provision ensures a streamlined and expedited evaluation and approval process for the registration statements.

Meanwhile, Mr. Lee said another SEC initiative to boost the capital markets was the implementation of the transaction date plus two days (T+2) settlement cycle, which started on Aug. 24.

“In fact, there were some entities pushing to extend the Aug. 24 implementation date. But we set a hard line on Aug. 24. Everyone has to implement T+2 by Aug. 24 because we want to make sure that the changes will happen,” Mr. Lee said.

“We’ve been fairly open-minded on some of the changes that we want to make with regards to the capital markets,” he added. — Revin Mikhael D. Ochave

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Change to US accounting rules will be a boon to companies holding crypto in 2025

The Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) has unanimously approved rules for accounting for the fair value of companies’ cryptocurrency holdings, according to media reports. The rules will go into effect in 2025.

The FASB is the United States organization that sets accounting and reporting standards for organizations that follow U.S. Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP). It issued a call for comments on proposed changes to the FASB Accounting Standards Codification in March.

The proposal was discussed and put to a vote on Sept. 6.

Fair value is the estimated price of an asset that takes into account current market value and other decisive elements. The FASB had made a “tentative” decision on fair value accounting for crypto assets in October 2022.

Previous practice required companies to keep impairment losses from crypto, caused when an asset suddenly loses value, on their balance sheets even after the digital asset regained its value.

Related: How to handle crypto trading gains and losses on your balance sheet

The new accounting method will increase volatility in the earnings of companies with large crypto holdings but allow them to record financial recoveries from increasing crypto prices. Companies can begin using fair-value accounting for their crypto immediately if they wish to. FASB member Christine Botosan said:

“It’s not very often that we can both take cost out of the system and improve the decision usefulness of information, and it makes it a really easy vote to do both of those.”

Besides crypto-native companies like Coinbase, the rule change will affect investment companies and companies like MicroStrategy and Tesla that hold large amounts of crypto. MicroStrategy chairman Michael Saylor wrote on X:

“Fair value accounting is coming to #Bitcoin. This upgrade to FASB accounting rules eliminates a major impediment to corporate adoption of $BTC as a treasury asset.”

To accommodate the changes, crypto will become a line item under “intangible assets” in financial accounts.

Magazine: How to protect your crypto in a volatile market: Bitcoin OGs and experts weigh in