Cholera cases up slightly after Hurricane Sandy
PORT-AU-PRINCE - The capital saw a small increase in the number of people infected by cholera after last week's destructive rains from Hurricane Sandy, an international medical group said Friday.
Doctors Without Borders said the group's five cholera treatment centers had at least 457 patients Monday. There were 500 patients Tuesday.
Spokesman Mathieu Fortoul said the number of cholera patients had since dropped, with the group's clinics having about 430 patients Friday.
The increase in cases was anticipated. Cholera spreads through water, and Haiti has seen a spike in the number of cases following periods of heavy rainfall. The country is vulnerable in large part because it doesn't have proper sanitation and sewage systems.
Major solar-energy project is now under construction
SAN JUAN - Construction has started on what will soon be the Caribbean's largest solar energy park.
The $265 million project is being built in southern Puerto Rico and is expected to generate enough electricity to power more than 13,000 homes in the U.S. territory.
The park features 270,000 solar panels and is being financed by CIRO Energy Group and One Planet Caribbean of San Juan and San Francisco-based GCL Solar Energy.
CIRO Group executive Ruben Perez said Friday that the project will help save 236 million barrels of petroleum a year and reduce greenhouse emissions by 217 billion pounds. Puerto Rico's government also expects construction to start soon on what will be the region's largest wind farm.
Huge new Catholic church is inaugurated with Mass
SAO PAULO - One of Brazil's most famous priests has inaugurated a massive new Roman Catholic church that will hold about 20,000 worshippers when complete.
A Mass was celebrated Friday in Sao Paulo to inaugurate the Mother of God sanctuary. It's been in construction for more than six years, and it will take several more to finish.
Father Marcelo Rossi is the driving force behind the project. He's a Latin Grammy-nominated Christian music singer and author of best-selling books in Brazil.
He tells the Folha de S. Paulo newspaper the church isn't meant as an answer to the rapid spread of evangelical churches in Brazil. Instead, the diocese served by the church badly needed a bigger structure.
Brazil has more Catholics than any other nation.
The Associated Press