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Kenny同志

meaning of in the system

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Kenny同志

Hello folks,

 

I am translating something in which there is a sentence I don't quite understand.

 

It's the second line of a passage

 

Lowering costs in the system over the last 18 months, reducing what people would have otherwise paid by about $520 over the next five years.

 

 

and the first one reads: "The government is helping Ontarians with their energy costs."

 

My question is: What's the system exactly?

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gato

System probably refers to this utility network in Ontario.  Costs in the system just refers to the energy costs incurred by customers of the utility.  

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Kenny同志

You are always the first one to help, Gato. Thanks!

 

Yes, I think that must be the case.

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Kenny同志

Here's the hardest sentence of the article:

 

"(The government will )Introduce an annual program review savings target of $250 million for 2014–15".

 

Any hint, folks?

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realmayo

The English is ugly and a bit ambiguous:

 

There is a review of the program.

This is either an annual review, or a review of an annual program.

The government expects the review will show how to reduce the cost of the program: this reduction = savings.

For 2014-15, the government is targetting a saving of $250m.

That which has been introduced is this target.

 

So: there is an annual review of the programme, and a target of saving $250m for 2014-15 has been introduced.

 

 

I'm sure you can translate all the the above into six characters or fewer! :)

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Kenny同志

麻油, you saved my day! Thanks!

 

The English is ugly and a bit ambiguous:

 

 

I can't agree with you more.

 

There is a review of the program.

This is either an annual review, or a review of an annual program.

The government expects the review will show how to reduce the cost of the program: this reduction = savings.

For 2014-15, the government is targetting a saving of $250m.

That which has been introduced is this target.

 

 

So: there is an annual review of the programme, and a target of saving $250m for 2014-15 has been introduced.

 

 

 

I guessed that's what it meant but I was so unsure of it that I wanted my guess to be confirmed by you native speakers.

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Kenny同志
I'm sure you can translate all the the above into six characters or fewer!

 

 

That's impossible, 麻油. Or at least I can't; I used ten characters!

 

Edit:

 

It's this kind of thing you can do nothing about when it comes to translating because the very type of terminology involved is far less underdeveloped in Chinese. I think, however, if the sentence was of an literary nature, I might be be able to find a way of getting around it.

 

Edit:

 

There isn't even an equivalent for "program" in Chinese!

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renzhe

To me it sounds like "lowering costs in the system" refers to overheads which are not directly related to energy itself.

Might be stuff like IT costs, or optimising some internal processes or something like that.

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Lu

There isn't even an equivalent for "program" in Chinese!

Wouldn't 项目 work? Or, translated a bit more freely, 过程?

I agree with Renzhe about 'costs in the system', this looks like it's about costs that are not the costs of the actual energy itself. So not the kWh themselves but the overhead of getting the kWh to your house.

I like how 'annual program review' is just as problematic as similar phrases in Chinese. I hope you can translate it just as ugly, ambiguously and problematically :-)

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realmayo
I used ten characters!

 

Out of interest, can you tell us what they were?

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Kenny同志

Thanks for your input, everybody.

 

@Renzhe and Lu

 

On further reflection, I think your interpretation of "in the system" made more sense. It's a pity that I was in such a hurry that I didn't give the phrase due thought. I will send the proofreader a note.

 

@Lu

 

Regarding "programme", in my opinion, none of its common translations, i.e. 項目, 計劃, and 方案 is as exact as the word itself. I am sure if you compare

a retirement pension programme  with 一個養老金項目(計劃, or 方案)

and a postgraduate programme with 一個研究生項目(計劃, or 方案), you will be able to tell that the Chinese translations are very awkward and inaccurate.

 

From my experience, translating the word often entails a compromise.

 

 

@麻油

 

My translation of the phrase was 年度計劃回顧節約目標. Very ugly, I know.

 

 

PS:

 

@Lu

 

過程 probably won't do as it means something completely different.

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Kenny同志

I got the finalised translation just now. My equally ugly translation has been revised as 通过审计计划考查各年的节约目标实现情况, which I think is a remarkable improvement!

 

The other changes are also great!

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Lu

通过审计计划考查各年的节约目标实现情况

I am so, so happy I don't have to translate that back. I almost get a headache just looking at it.

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Kenny同志

Haha, I understand, Lu. It's truly a bit of a challenge.

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roddy

1) Introduce an annual program review savings target of $250 million for 2014–15

2) 通过审计计划考查各年的节约目标实现情况

 

Is 2) meant to be a translation of 1)? And is it complete? 

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Kenny同志

Yes, it meant to be a complete translation for the English. But you should note that I didn't include the second half of the translation here and that the quoted English is also incomplete.

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roddy

It looks to me like in the English that there is an annual program review, which will identify savings that can be made. The target for savings is $250m for 2014-2015. But that in the Chinese, the review will see if savings have been achieved. 

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Kenny同志

It looks to me like in the English that there is an annual program review, which will identify savings that can be made. The target for savings is $250m for 2014-2015. But that in the Chinese, the review will see if savings have been achieved.

The Chinese says that the review will see how much savings have been achieved.

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