Today on Rappler:
STOP NEW ELECTRIC BILLING FOR RENEWABLE ENERGY, SC ASKED
The Philippine Supreme Court is asked to stop the "unreasonable" 4-centavo per kilowatt hour billing for renewable energy by January 2015. In a petition, Lawyer Mike Ancheta says the additional line item violates the Constitution and must be nullified. Ancheta adds it violates consumer rights since they are charged for power yet to be generated. The fee, imposed by the Energy Regulatory Commission, is meant to fund renewable energy producers as part of government efforts to lessen dependence on fossil fuels.
POPE FRANCIS URGES 'TENDERNESS' ON CHRISTMAS
In his Christmas Eve mass, Pope Francis calls for "tenderness" and "warmth" among Christians after a violence-plagued year. Addressing a crowd of about 5,000 at St. Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican the pope also calls the "arrogant, proud, and closed-off to others" to meet life with “goodness and meekness.” Pope Francis will visit the Philippines on January 15.
SONY STREAMS 'THE INTERVIEW' ONLINE
Sony Pictures releases controversial film "The Interview" online on Christmas Eve Tuesday or early Christmas day Wednesday Manila time. The movie, which outraged North Korea for its parody of dictator Kim Jong-Un, is now available in the United States. The Interview is available for rent in the United States on Youtube for $5.99, on the Google Play app for Android devices and on the website seetheinterview.com. The movie will be released in about 200 cinemas on Christmas Day in the United States. Sony earlier cancelled the release after a cyber-attack on its corporate network and threats against moviegoers.
CHINA CITY BANS CHRISTMAS IN SCHOOLS, WARNS OVER 'WESTERN' CULTURE
Chinese city Wenzhou bans schools from holding Christmas events. State media reports local officials affiliated with the Communist party say schools should “pay more attention to Chinese traditional festivals instead of Western traditions.” Interest in Christmas grew in China as an occasion for shopping. In 2014, Wenzhou authorities launched a demolition campaign targeting local churches, with more than 400 forced to remove visible crosses while some structures were completely destroyed.
$2 MILLION CASH SPILLS ONTO HONG KONG HIGHWAY
Imagine cash raining down like confetti – that’s exactly what happened in central Hong Kong on Christmas eve courtesy of a driver of an armored van who accidentally left the door open, losing more than $2 million in cash as he drove through the highway. Taxi drivers rushed out of their cars to grab the cash scattered over the highway. TV footage show pedestrians running from sidewalk to take part in the mad scramble. Police rushed to the scene to secure the area. Officials warn it’s larceny to keep the money and may be punishable with up to 10 years in jail.
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