The article presents an analysis and evaluation of the accident rate in selected European Union countries. On the basis of available statistical data, the analysis of accidents in various sectors of the European Union economy was carried out. Afterwards, a ranking of countries regarding accidents in the construction industry was developed. For the selected representative countries, analysis of changes in the indicators which characterize the accident rate during the period between 2008 and 2012 was carried out. Conclusions resulting from the conducted research were formulated.
In Poland, it often happens that construction objects are subject to demolition work for different reasons. Demolition, according the Construction Law, is defined as a type of construction works and, as such, represents a particular type of construction project. As in other construction projects, a very important phase, in addition to execution of the works, is to prepare, design and plan demolition works. Some demolition activities are covered by appropriate regulations and can be described as typical. On the other hand the technical side of demolition works depends on many factors such as: the type of building, its age, technical condition, type of construction, etc. This article covers the analysis of the stages and tasks in the preparatory phase of the building demolition. This work will also present a description of the tasks carried out during the demolition works based on the example of a historic tenement house located in Krakow. This analysis aims to identify implementation problems and sources of risk that may occur during this type of construction work.
Risks pertaining to construction work relate to situations in which various events may randomly change the duration and cost of the project or worsen its quality. Because of possible significant changes of random events, favorable, moderate, and difficult conditions of construction work are considered. It is the first stage of the construction risk analysis. The probabilistic parameters of construction are identified and described by using the design characteristics model of the structure and the construction technology model. The first describes the probabilistic properties of the structure execution's technology. The second describes the probabilistic properties of the works execution. Both models contain basic probabilistic data for scheduling, cost estimating, and risk assessment of the construction.
This article shows incidents associated with the use of gas as an energy carrier. It presents selected incidents which have occurred in Poland and around the world in recent decades. Based on this, consequences of gas and air mixture explosions were analysed as well. The article presents the main causes of gas incidents which have taken place, as per instances which are similar worldwide. Incidents associated with the use of gas are not frequent, but at the same time very tragic as they often lead to illness or even death. In Poland, in the last twenty years, construction area disasters caused by gas explosions account for only 5% of all which have occurred, but the number of fatalities resulting from these cases is approximately 14%. The number of individuals injured reached 39% of all construction disaster victims. Considering all these facts, it is necessary to undertake wide preventive measures in order to increase safety in the use of gaseous fuels.
The aim of the article is to present the issue of risk and related management methods, with a particular emphasis on the conditions of investment in energy infrastructure. The work consists of two main parts; the first one is the theoretical analysis of the issue, while the second discusses the application of analysis methods on the example of the investment in an agricultural biogas plant. The article presents the definitions related to the investment risk and its management, with a particular emphasis on the distinction between the risk and uncertainty. In addition, the main risk groups of the energy sector were subjected to an analysis. Then, the basic systematics and the division into particular risk groups were presented and the impact of the diversification of investments in the portfolio on the general level of risk was determined. The sources of uncertainty were discussed with particular attention to the categories of energy investments. The next part of the article presents risk mitigation methods that are part of the integrated risk management process and describes the basic methods supporting the quantification of the risk level and its effects – including the Monte Carlo (MC), Value at risk (VaR), and other methods. Finally, the paper presents the possible application of the methods presented in the theoretical part. The investment in agricultural biogas plant, due to the predictable operation accompanied by an extremely complicated and long-term investment process, was the subject of the analysis. An example of “large drawing analysis” was presented, followed by a Monte Carlo simulation and a VaR value determination. The presented study allows for determining the risk in the case of deviation of financial flows from the assumed values in particular periods and helps in determining the effects of such deviations. The conducted analysis indicates a low investment risk and suggests the ease of similar calculations for other investments.
The aim of the paper is to point out that the Monte Carlo simulation is an easy and flexible approach when it comes to forecasting risk of an asset portfolio. The case study presented in the paper illustrates the problem of forecasting risk arising from a portfolio of receivables denominated in different foreign currencies. Such a problem seems to be close to the real issue for enterprises offering products or services on several foreign markets. The changes in exchange rates are usually not normally distributed and, moreover, they are always interdependent. As shown in the paper, the Monte Carlo simulation allows for forecasting market risk under such circumstances.
The objective of this work was to generate a series of equations to describe the voltinism of Lobesia botrana in the quarantine area of the main winemaking area of Argentina, Mendoza. To do this we considered an average climate scenario and extrapolated these equations to other winegrowing areas at risk of being invaded. A grid of 4 km2 was used to generate statistics on L. botrana captures and the mean temperature accumulation for the pixel. Four sets of logistic regression were constructed using the percentage of accumulated trap catches/grid/week and the degree-day accumulation above 7°C, from 1st July. By means of a habitat model, an extrapolation of the phenological model generated to other Argentine winemaking areas was evaluated. According to our results, it can be expected that 50% of male adult emergence for the first flight occurs at 248.79 ± 4 degree-days (DD), in the second flight at 860.18 ± 4.1 DD, while in the third and the fourth flights, 1671.34 ± 5.8 DD and 2335.64 ± 4.3 DD, respectively. Subsequent climatic comparison determined that climatic conditions of uncolonized areas of Cuyo Region have a similar suitability index to the quarantine area used to adjust the phenological model. The upper valley of Río Negro and Neuquén are environmentally similar. Valleys of the northwestern region of Argentina showed lower average suitability index and greater variability among SI estimated by the algorithm considered. The combination of two models for the estimation of adult emergence time and potential distribution, can provide greater certainties in decision-making and risk assessment of invasive species.
The purpose of this article is to identify and assess environmental risks that may have the greatest impact on the future of humanity. They were divided into two basic groups, i.e. for natural processes and resources. In addition, climate change is described as different group. The authors decided, that a holistic approach to this issue is more desirable than dividing it into two above-mentioned groups. The comparison of various threats was possible due to the application of identical assessment criteria, such as: the harmfulness, rate of spread, scope and moment of occurrence of a given group of threats. Each of the listed criteria has been evaluated on a five-point scale, where 1 has the smallest and 5 the largest impact force. The obtained results show the leading importance of natural processes in maintaining the existing Earth system. In addition, the authors point to a greater risk of problems related to renewable resources than non-renewable one. As a result, it can be assumed that the current degradation of natural processes and excessive use of resources is likely to lead to the risk of global disasters.
This paper presents the innovative activity of enterprises as a process that is risky but necessary for the survival of a company in a competitive market, and as a way to maximize the long-term value for the owners. Risks and benefits were analysed, and the possible sources of added value in innovative projects were identified in the context of the capital market equilibrium and the budgeting of investments. Innovative projects become a source of added value for investors if the financial effects such as changes in the residual cash flow and higher growth rate outweigh the combined impact on the risk generated by two factors: increase of systematic risk and emerging specific risks.
Hass avocado cultivation in Colombia has grown rapidly in area in recent years. It is being planted in marginal areas, which leads to low yields, and in many cases is related to diseases. Ecological niche modeling (ENM) can offer a view of the potential geographic and environmental distribution of diseases, and thus identify areas with suitable or unsuitable conditions for their development. The aim of the study was to assess current and potential distribution of the major diseases on Hass avocado in Colombia. Areas planted with Hass avocado in Antioquia, Colombia were sampled for diseases including the following pathogens: Phytophthora cinnamomi, Verticillium sp., Lasiodiplodia theobromae, Phytophthora palmivora, Colletotrichum gloeosporioides sensu lato, Pestalotia sp., and Capnodium sp., and one disorder hypoxia-anoxia. These pathogens were selected based on their relevance (incidence-severity) and capacity to cause damage in different tissues of avocado plants. Severity and incidence of each disease were related to environmental information from vegetation indices and topographic variables using maximum entropy modeling approaches (MaxEnt). Models were calibrated only across areas sampled, and then transferred more broadly to areas currently planted, and to potential zones for planting. Combinations of best performance and low omission rates were the basis for model selection. Results show that Hass avocado has been planted in areas highly conducive for many pathogens, particularly for Phytophthora cinnamomi and hypoxia-anoxia disorder. Ecological niche modeling approaches offer an alternative toolset for planning and making assessments that can be incorporated into disease management plans.
The paper concerns the assessment of blackout hazards in the power systems. On the basis of statistical data from more than one hundred failures in power systems that affected the world in the last fifty years, the analysis was carried out regarding the number of people affected by a blackout, power losses in the system, duration of a failure and its direct causes. The paper also describes the methodology of risk analysis and vulnerability analysis of the extraordinary events occurrence in electrical power systems resulting in failures. The structure of risk analysis was based on the bow tie model, identifying threats, unwanted events, barriers and consequences of a system failure. Moreover, particular attention was drawn to the impact of the power reserve deficit in the Polish Power System in the coming years on the increase in the risk of a blackout failure.
Overseas mining investment generally faces considerable risk due to a variety of complex risk factors. Therefore, indexes are often based on conditions of uncertainty and cannot be fully quantified. Guided by set pair analysis (SPA) theory, this study constructs a risk evaluation index system based on an analysis of the risk factors of overseas mining investment and determines the weights of factors using entropy weighting methods. In addition, this study constructs an identity-discrepancycontrary risk assessment model based on the 5-element connection number. Both the certainty and uncertainty of the various risks are treated uniformly in this model and it is possible to mathematically describe and quantitatively express complex system decisions to evaluate projects. Overseas mining investment risk and its changing trends are synthetically evaluated by calculating the adjacent connection number and analyzing the set pair potential. Using an actual overseas mining investment project as an example, the risk of overseas mining investment can be separated into five categories according to the risk field, and then the evaluation model is quantified and specific risk assessment results are obtained. Compared to the field investigation, the practicability and effectiveness of the evaluation method are illustrated. This new model combines static and dynamic factors and qualitative and quantitative information, which improves the reliability and accuracy of risk evaluation. Furthermore, this evaluation method can also be applied to other similar evaluations and has a certain scalability.
The article summarizes panel discussions led at the Polish Scientific Networks conference. It covers the topics of social and (un)social innovations, their sources, and applications, as well as the new approaches to the concept of the wisdom of the crowds (as opposed to swarm mentality). The article draws on academic research on trust and distrust, declining reliance on formal expertise and a turn against the science, and posttruth society phenomenon. The article concludes with observations about risk aversion in different cultures, to suggest some practical solutions in education programs, needed to address the challenges of the future.
In the over 150 years of hydrocarbon history, the year 2017 will be one of the many similar. However, it will be a breakthrough year for liquefied natural gas. In Asia, China grew to become the leader of import growth, becoming the second world importer, overtaking even South Korea and chasing Japan. The Panama Canal for LNG trade and the “Northern Passage” was opened, so that Russian LNG supplies appeared in Europe. The year 2017 was marked by a dramatic shortening of the length of long-term concluded contracts, their shorter tenure and reduction of volumes – that is, it was another period of market commoditization of this energy resource. The article describes the current state of LNG production and trade till 2018. It focuses on natural gas production in the United States, Qatar, Australia, Russia as countries that can produce and supply LNG to the European Union. The issue of prices and the contracts terms in 2017 was analyzed in detail. The authors stress that the market is currently characterized by an oversupply and will last at least until mid–2020. Novatek, Total – Yamal-LNG project leaders have put the condensing facility at 5.5 million tons into operation. The Christophe de Margerie oil tanker was the first commercial unit to cross the route to Norway and then further to the UK without icebreakers and set a new record on the North Sea Road. In 2017, the Russian company increased its share in the European gas market from 33.1 to 34.7%. In 2017, Russia and Norway exported record volumes of „tubular” – classic natural gas to Europe (and Turkey), 194 and 122 billion m3 respectively, which is 15 and 9 billion m3 more natural gas than in 2016. The thesis was put forward that Russia would not easily give up its sphere of influence and would do everything and use various mechanisms, not only on the market, that it would simply be more expensive and economically unprofitable than natural gas. It was also emphasized that the pressure of the technically possible and economically viable redirection to European terminals of methane carriers landed in the American LNG, results in Gazprom not having a choice but to adjust its prices. The Americans, but also any other supplier (Australia?) can simply do the same and this awareness alone is enough for Russian gas to be present in Europe at a good price.
Because of the value of time, investors are interested in obtaining economic benefits rather early and at a highest return. But some investing opportunities, e.g. mineral projects, require from an investor to freeze their capital for several years. In exchange for this, they expect adequate remuneration for waiting, uncertainty and possible opportunities lost. This compensation is reflected in the level of interest rate they demand. Commonly used approach of project evaluation – the discounted cash flow analysis – uses this interest rate to determine present value of future cash flows. Mining investors should worry about project’s cash flows with greater assiduousness – especially about those arising in first years of the project lifetime. Having regard to the mining industry, this technique views a mineral deposit as complete production project where the base sources of uncertainty are future levels of economic-financial and technical parameters. Some of them are more risky than others – this paper tries to split apart and weigh their importance by the example of Polish hard coal projects at the feasibility study. The work has been performed with the sensitivity analysis of the internal rate of return. Calculations were made using the ‘bare bones’ assumption (on all the equity basis, constant money, after tax, flat price and constant operating costs), which creates a good reference and starting point for comparing other investment alternatives and for future investigations. The first part introduces with the discounting issue; in the following sections the paper presents data and methods used for spinning off risk components from the feasibility-stage discount rate and, in the end, some recommendations are presented.
The article analyzes the risk factors related to the energy use of alternative fuels from waste. The essence of risk and its impact on economic activity in the area of waste management were discussed. Then, a risk assessment, on the example of waste fractions used for the production of alternative fuel, was carried out. In addition, the benefits for the society and the environment from the processing of alternative fuels for energy purposes, including, among others: reducing the cost of waste disposal, limiting the negative impact on water, soil and air, reducing the amount of waste deposited, acquisition of land; reduction of the greenhouse effect, facilitating the recycling of other fractions, recovery of electricity and heat, and saving conventional energy carriers, were determined. The analysis of risk factors is carried out separately for plants processing waste for alternative fuel production and plants producing energy from this type of fuel. Waste processing plants should pay attention to investment, market (price, interest rate, and currency), business climate, political, and legal risks, as well as weather, seasonal, logistic, technological, and loss of profitability or bankruptcy risks. Similar risks are observed in the case of energy companies, as they operate in the same external environment. Moreover, internal risks may be similar; however, the specific nature of the operation of each enterprise should be taken into account. Energy companies should pay particular attention to the various types of costs that may threaten the stability of operation, especially in the case of regulated energy prices. The risk associated with the inadequate quality of the supplied and stored fuels is important. This risk may disrupt the technological process and reduce the plant’s operational efficiency. Heating plants and combined heat and power plants should also not underestimate the non-catastrophic weather risk, which may lead to a decrease in heat demand and a reduction in business revenues. A comprehensive approach to risk should protect enterprises against possible losses due to various types of threats, including both external and internal threats.
The article discusses the issues of values and social responsibility of universities. On the one hand, the foundations of functioning of universities, which are created by research and education and the role of universities in formation, are recalled. On the other hand, it was reminded that the heart of universities, their DNA, are academic values, defined primarily in the Magna Charta Universitatum, but also in many other documents, such as the Code of Values of the Jagiellonian University. Hence, universities are increasingly often referred to not only as universities of knowledge, but also as universities of wisdom. Together, they are the basis for the social responsibility of universities. However, they alone are not enough for this social responsibility to materialise. Appropriate behaviour and actions are essential. Because knowledge alone is not everything. Such actions are always necessary, but especially when we find ourselves, as a country, humanity and a planet, in a crisis situation related to the climate disaster, which we are already partially experiencing. After the presentation of the most important current facts related to the climate and environmental crisis, the tasks to be undertaken urgently in this context by universities were presented, from broadly understood education, through convincing politicians to ambitious and quick actions, to intensive work on innovative solutions that can contribute to reducing threats brought by the climate and environmental crisis, pointing out, among others, the initiatives proposed by the newly created network of universities U7.