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    Recently, The International Union for Conservation of Nature, the world’s most comprehensive scientific authority on the status of species, classified the magnificent migratory Monarch butterflies as endangered after decades of declining populations. Source: KPIX CBS SF Bay Area/YouTube Monarch caterpillars can only eat milkweed, and the females deposit eggs on milkweed plants from Texas to Canada. However, habitat destruction and pesticides on these plants have led to a huge decline in these populations. Farmers began using crops that were genetically modified to withstand glyphosate, a herbicide that is used in the weed killer Roundup. This killed milkweed plants that monarch caterpillars are dependent upon. Extreme weather, like droughts and wildfires, has also led to a decline in milkweed plants. The United States Government must act quickly to list the Monarch butterfly under the Endangered Species Act so that they are protected and can be saved! Sign this petition to put pressure on the Fish and Wildlife Service to list the butterflies under the Endangered Species Act! Scientists Are Now Classifying Monarch Butterflies as Endangered Species. Why Won't the U.S. Government Do the Same?Click Here to Sign...
    John Oliver recently delved into the topic of environmental racism in the US and how toxic pollution disproportionately affects people of color. Source: LastWeekTonight/Youtube The host of The Last Week Tonight, spoke about astounding studies that found that black Americans were exposed to 38 percent more polluted air and 75 percent more likely to live in communities that border a factory or plant. Being publicly-funded gives us a greater chance to continue providing you with high-quality content.Click here to Support Us According to a 2021 study funded by the EPA, exposure to air pollution was higher for people of color, regardless of region or income. They found that black Americans making a salary of $200,000 were exposed to more air pollution than white Americans making only $25,000. Oliver said the studies prove “yet again, racism is one of the few things in this country more powerful than money. He went on to say, “In fact, I believe America’s current top five power rankings go: racism, beef, viral videos of soldiers reuniting with their dogs, DJ Khaled’s PR team,...
    Data available from state and local government payroll records – not readily available to the public – show “substantially steeper declines in public-sector union membership” in the United States. “The best data available are state- and local-government payroll records,” Daniel DiSalvo, a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute, wrote at City Journal Wednesday. The professor of political science in the Colin Powell School at the City College of New York–CUNY explained further: They detail exactly which public employees are having union dues deducted from their paychecks. Where they are collected, these figures show substantially steeper declines in public-sector union membership—but these records are not made easily available to the public. One must file a Freedom of Information Act or similar public-records request to secure the data. Furthermore, many states use different reporting methods, and figures are not typically available for all government employers. DiSalvo noted that when the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision four years ago in Janus v. AFSCME ended forced membership and payment of dues to public sector unions, the question remained how many existing union members would choose...
    (CNN)As the Omicron wave recedes in the United States, public health officials are faced with a new round of decision-making on the best way for the country to move forward. It's a critical moment to rebuild the trust that has been lost among weary Americans over the past two years, said Lori Tremmel Freeman, chief executive officer of the National Association of County and City Health Officials.But the best way to gain that trust -- offering a transparent, metric-based approach -- is challenged by a fractured and undervalued health data infrastructure. It's problem that has long plagued the United States and one that has hindered the ability to respond swiftly and pointedly to the Covid-19 pandemic since the beginning. As states plan to lift school mask mandates, CDC remains vague on updating its guidance"It's difficult not just during pandemic times, but even more difficult during the pandemic," Freeman said. "Our data modernization infrastructure for governmental public health is just really nonexistent. So when you think about having to pivot quickly with new metrics and how that data gets collected...
    The White House was working closely with top U.S. fuel pipeline operator Colonial Pipeline on Sunday to help it recover from a ransomware attack that forced the company to shut a critical fuel network supplying populous eastern states.  The attack is one of the most disruptive digital ransom schemes reported and has prompted calls from American lawmakers to strengthen protections for critical U.S. energy infrastructure from hacking attacks.  Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo said the pipeline fix was a top priority for the Biden administration and Washington was working to avoid more severe fuel supply disruptions by helping Colonial restart as quickly as possible its more than 5,500-mile (8,850 km) pipeline network from Texas to New Jersey.  "It's an all hands on deck effort right now," Raimondo said on CBS' "Face the Nation" program. "We are working closely with the company, state and local officials, to make sure that they get back up to normal operations as quickly as possible and there aren't disruptions in supply."  Colonial said on Sunday its main fuel lines remain offline but some smaller lines between terminals and delivery points are now operational. Neither Raimondo nor the company gave an estimate for a full restart date and...
    (CNN)The US Census Bureau on Monday announced the winners and losers of the decennial US population count, which you've probably already heard about for the obstacles that got in the way of the 2020 edition. (The short version: the Trump administration tried to game it and Covid delayed it.) The results will determine which states gain and lose seats in the House of Representatives -- and, as a result, which states gain or lose Electoral College votes, which are allocated based on the number of congressional representatives each state has. Here's what we learned about who lives in the US right now and where they are: The US population is growing, but more slowly. As of April 1, 2021, there are 331,449,281 people living in the United States.That's an increase of 7.4% since 2010, the second slowest growth rate in history, just barely behind the 1940 census after the Great Depression. Read MoreRead CNN's full report here.The South is booming. Most of the country continues to grow, but the South is growing fastest -- more than 10% since 2010, followed...
    A man gets vaccinated at the Urban Primary Health Center in Uttar Pradesh, India.Pradeep Gaur | SOPA Images | LightRocket | Getty Images India's second wave of coronavirus infection shows no signs of slowing down. The South Asian country reported more than 200,000 new cases and more than 1,000 deaths over a 24-hour period on Thursday, according to health ministry data. Most of the new infections are being reported in a handful of states, including the western state of Maharashtra, which is home to India's financial capital Mumbai. Government data also suggests that more states are showing an upward trajectory in reported cases, which have been rising since February. The death rate is also increasing as hospitals face pressure over supplies, including the number of beds available. For example, a doctor's association in the state of Gujarat has reportedly asked the government to ensure 100% oxygen supply for hospitals treating Covid-19 patients. India still has a relatively high recovery rate. Since the beginning of April, India has reported more than 1.9 million new cases and over 10,600 deaths, per CNBC's...
    (CNN)The Covid-19 vaccine rollout started as a trickle. But the pace has steadily picked up each week, more than tripling in the first month under the Trump administration and reaching President Joe Biden's goal of 1.5 million shots per day just about three weeks into his term.But some aspects of the federal rollout plan leave states wanting more.CNN recently reached out directly to all 50 states to understand any roadblocks or speed bumps they've experienced throughout the vaccine rollout. For states that did not respond, CNN also tracked recent public statements by governors and state health department leaders. First FEMA Covid-19 mass vaccination sites open in California amid supply shortageStates say they're ready for the floodgates to open -- for both physical supply of vaccine and communication from the federal government.Over the past week, leaders in most states have stated publicly or in interviews with CNN that vaccine supply is the key -- or only -- holdup to increasing the pace of vaccinations.Read MoreIn West Virginia, about 14% of the population has received at least one dose of Covid-19, according...
    President Donald Trump arrives to deliver remarks during a tour of the Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechnologies' Innovation Center, a pharmaceutical manufacturing plant where components for a potential coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccine candidate are being developed, in Morrrisville, North Carolina, U.S., July 27, 2020.Carlos Barria | Reuters The Trump administration's plan to coordinate existing vaccine registries into a national database for the Covid-19 vaccine rollout is raising privacy concerns among some immunization officials who say the data should remain only with states. States have always been charged with tracking vaccinations among their residents through what's known as immunization information systems. Previous attempts to stand up a federal registry have been foiled by advocates who say personal health information should not be centralized under the federal government. But federal officials say the national collection of Covid vaccination data is now urgently needed to ensure that the largest mass vaccination effort in history moves as smoothly as possible. Centralized data will help the government ensure people get their follow-up dose even if they leave their state, Operation Warp Speed officials said Monday, and will...
    By Sanjeev Miglani and Devjyot Ghoshal NEW DELHI (Reuters) - India is closing in on an agreement with the United States that will give it access to satellite data for better accuracy of missiles and drones, government and industry officials said, as it tries to narrow the gap with the powerful Chinese military. The two sides are expected to announce the pact during the visit next week of U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Defense Secretary Mark Esper for talks in New Delhi with Indian counterparts Subrahmanyam Jaishankar and Rajnath Singh. The United States, which antagonised Beijing this week by approving the potential sale of three weapons systems to Taiwan, has also been pushing for stronger security ties with India to help balance China's growing regional influence. U.S. companies have sold India more than $21 billion of weapons since 2007 and Washington has been urging the Indian government to sign agreements allowing for sharing of sensitive information and encrypted communications for better use of the high-end military equipment. Prime Minister Narendra Modi's cabinet discussed the final draft of the...
    GENEVA (AP) — A Swiss federal commissioner announced Tuesday that a U.S.-Swiss program aimed to protect personal information exchanged between the two countries doesn’t go far enough, and has downgraded the United States to rank it as a country deemed to have inadequate data protection. Federal Data Protection and Information Commissioner Adrian Lobsiger, in a new policy paper, recommends that Swiss companies or government should disclose personal data to the U.S. only if safeguards are put in place to protect people from prying U.S. authorities. Lobsiger’s paper follows a regular review of the three-year-old U.S.-Swiss program known as Privacy Shield, and his recommendations follow similar concerns expressed by EU authorities about an alleged lack of privacy protections in the United States. Switzerland is not an EU member, but often mirrors or lines up with the positions of the 27-member bloc that all but surrounds the wealthy Alpine country. In July, the EU’s top court ruled that the bloc’s own Privacy Shield program with the U.S. was invalid because the American government can snoop on people’s data. The ruling complicated business...
    TikTok : Although the epic controversy between Apple and Epic – the creators of Fortnite – is the one that monopolizes the headlines of Technology, the contest between TikTok and the United States of Donald Trump continues: A week ago, the president of the United States Donald Trump, signed an executive order to prohibit “any transaction” with TikTok after 45 days if its owner, the Chinese Bytedance, does not sell its operations in the United States to a local company, which can thus control what the app of Chinese origin does on American soil –in fact, and given that TikTok is the viral app of the moment, Microsoft and Twitter have already been interested in buying them. The reason for such a political decision on a mobile application? Lhe concerns that the data collected by the music video social network will be used for counterintelligence by the Chinese Communist Party. TikTok’s opinion? That these measures constitute “a dangerous precedent for freedom of expression.” And they certainly are, but they are also seen with different eyes after what happened...
    WASHINGTON - President Donald Trump ordered ByteDance on Friday to divest the U.S. operations of its video-sharing app TikTok within 90 days, the latest effort to ramp up pressure on the Chinese company over concerns about the safety of the personal data it handles. "There is credible evidence that leads me to believe that ByteDance ... might take action that threatens to impair the national security of the United States," Trump said in the Order. Trump's latest move comes on top of an executive order he issued last week that would prohibit certain transactions with TikTok unless ByteDance divests it within 45 days. ByteDance is already in talks to sell the North America, Australia and New Zealand operations of TikTok to Microsoft Corp. The new order adds to pressure for ByteDance to divest TikTok, and legally buttresses the U.S. government's crackdown on the Chinese-owned social media app. It authorizes U.S. officials to inspect TikTok and ByteDance's books and information systems to ensure the safety of personal data while the sale talks are ongoing. While TikTok is best known for...
    Ashley Gorski, ACLU Senior Staff AttorneyACLU At a time when U.S. GDP is expected to drop by levels not seen since the Great Depression, U.S. government surveillance practices are landing another blow to large and small businesses alike. On Thursday, in a ruling with enormous implications for U.S. companies, the E.U.'s highest court invalidated a data-transfer agreement between the European Union and the United States, known as "Privacy Shield." The demise of Privacy Shield is directly attributable to the breadth of U.S. government surveillance, which ensnares the data of countless Europeans in a spying apparatus that is fundamentally at odds with E.U. privacy law. For the more than 5,000 U.S. businesses across the country that rely on Privacy Shield for transatlantic data transfers, the E.U. court's ruling is a serious problem. But there's a straightforward way out of this dilemma: comprehensive U.S. surveillance reform. The case before the E.U. Court of Justice, known as Schrems II, presented two key issues: first, whether the scope of U.S. surveillance means that the United States fails to "adequately" protect the privacy rights...
    Unemployment remains painfully high in the U.S. even as economic activity slowly picks up.That reality will be on display Thursday morning when the U.S. government releases data on how many workers sought unemployment benefits last week, as well as how retailers did in June.Both reports will be closely watched as new confirmed cases of coronavirus rise in 40 states, including huge spikes in California, Texas and Florida. Surging infections threaten to slow the nascent economic recovery."The risk of a dip lower in the economy has increased as more states adopt policies to combat the virus spread," economists at Bank of America said in research note. "Until the country manages to get the virus under control, the recovery is likely to be one of fits and starts."Applications for jobless aid are expected to remain stuck at the worrisome level of around 1.2 million, the 17th straight week of claims above the 1 million mark. Before the pandemic intensified in mid-March, the highest weekly figure on record was about 700,000.Sales at retail stores and restaurants likely rose 5.4% in June, according to...
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