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In Win for Environmentalists, Senate Keeps an Obama-Era Climate Change Rule

In Win for Environmentalists, Senate Keeps an Obama-Era Climate Change Rule Photo Senator Lindsey Graham, Republican of South Carolina, broke with his party on Wednesday to help keep a regulation to control the release of methane. Credit Cliff Owen/Associated Press WASHINGTON — In a surprising victory for President Barack Obama’s environmental legacy, the Senate voted on Wednesday to uphold an Obama-era climate change regulation to control the release of methane from oil and gas wells on public land.
Senators voted 51 to 49 to block consideration of a resolution to repeal the 2016 Interior Department rule to curb emissions of methane, a powerful planet-warming greenhouse gas. Senators John McCain of Arizona, Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and Susan Collins of Maine, all Republicans who have expressed concern about climate change and backed legislation to tackle the issue, broke with their party to join Democrats and defeat the resolution.
The vote also was the first, and probably the..

A Strong Case Against a Pesticide Does Not Faze E.P.A. Under Trump

A Strong Case Against a Pesticide Does Not Faze E.P.A. Under Trump Photo Chlorpyrifos is still on the market as an agricultural pesticide, routinely sprayed on common crops like apples, oranges, strawberries and broccoli. Credit Gerry Broome/Associated Press Some of the most compelling evidence linking a widely used pesticide to developmental problems in children stems from what scientists call a “natural” experiment.
Though in this case, there was nothing natural about it.
Chlorpyrifos (pronounced klor-PYE-ruh-fahs) had been used to control bugs in homes and fields for decades when researchers at Columbia University began studying the effects of pollutants on pregnant mothers from low-income neighborhoods. Two years into their study, the pesticide was removed from store shelves and banned from home use, because animal research had found it caused brain damage in baby rats.
Pesticide levels dropped in the cord blood of many newborns joining the study. Scientists soon discovered that th..

Trilobites: Earliest Known Human Footprints in North America Found on Canadian Island

Earliest Known Human Footprints in North America Found on Canadian Island Photo A digitally enhanced photo of a footprint found at Calvert Island, British Columbia that researchers dated to 13,000 years old. Credit Duncan McLaren Big feet. Little feet. A heel here. A toe there.
Stamped across the shoreline of Calvert Island, British Columbia, are 13,000-year-old human footprints that archaeologists believe to be the earliest found so far in North America.
The finding, which was published Wednesday in the journal PLOS One, adds support to the idea that some ancient humans from Asia ventured into North America by hugging the Pacific coastline, rather than by traveling through the interior.
“This provides evidence that people were inhabiting the region at the end of the last ice age,” said Duncan McLaren, an anthropologist at the Hakai Institute and University of Victoria in British Columbia and lead author of the study. “It is possible that the coast was one of the means by which people ..

Chile and Its Scientists Protest Research on Tiny Mummy

Chile and Its Scientists Protest Research on Tiny Mummy Photo Researchers examined the DNA of this mummified skeleton from Chile. After their study was published days ago, the Chilean government started an inquiry into whether the remains were illegally exhumed and smuggled out of the country. Credit Bhattacharya S et al. 2018 Days after researchers announced that a tiny mummy once rumored to be an alien was actually a human infant, Chilean scientists condemned the new study as unethical and their government began an investigation into grave robbing.
The Chilean National Monuments Council, a government agency, said in an email Tuesday that it had initiated an inquiry into whether the little girl’s remains were illegally exhumed in 2003 and smuggled out of the country. The council has turned over its records to the Public Ministry of Chile in response to the outcry from Chilean researchers. They contended that the grave site was plundered and the mummified skeleton was stolen, violating..

Andy Murray invests in UK tech startup

Former Wimbledon champion has investments in over 30 UK startups
Tennis star and three-time Grand Slam champion Andy Murray has injected cash into a UK tech startup and has proposed future investment in a second fintech company.
Murray invested in mortgage lender Landbay, having already invested in the company two years ago. The startup also has the backing of online estate agent Zoopla.
Murray has taken up the option of making a future investment in Landbay in order to maintain his stake in the startup.
Read more How East London's traders are joining forces to demand fair rent The tennis player also intends to back Investly, a startup that offers invoicing solutions for small businesses.
He has now invested in more than 30 UK businesses using Seedrs, a popular crowdfunding platform.
Seedrs did not disclose the amount Murray invested in either startup.
“I can really see the value in Investly for small businesses – the early days of a business can be really tough so helpi..

Mini unveils one-off electric version of iconic original car

It has top speeds of 75 miles per hour
Mini has unveiled a one-off electric version of its iconic original car, as the British firm showcases its zero-emissions technology.
The classic Mini is one of the world’s most recognisable city cars, with more than five million sold between 1959 and 2000.
Now engineers at the Oxford-based manufacturer have transported a classic model into the 21st century by turning it into an electric car.
Read more Sweden steps up hunt for cobalt as electric cars boost demand How electric car batteries sparked a cobalt frenzy in 2017 BMW targets 50% rise in electric car sales in 2018 Global electric car sales jump to record high in third-quarter The road-legal car is fitted with 30 lithium-iron phosphate batteries to give it a range of 65 miles and a top speed of 75mph.
Mini has created the modern vehicle by combining the compact but practical old design with the new zero-emissions technology.
A statement from Mini said: “With this unique vehicle, Min..

Ikea reveals gender pay gap of 6.9%, far lower than retail sector as a whole

Swedish retailer also reports reversed gender pay gap of 10.6% in its distribution business
Ikea has revealed a gender pay gap of 6.9 per cent in its retail business, a significantly smaller difference than the UK average.
The Swedish retailer reported a reversed gender pay gap of 10.6 per cent in its distribution business – meaning it pays women in the division more than men.
Women are paid more in distribution – which makes up just under one-tenth of Ikea’s UK operation – because of a higher number of women in management positions, the company said
Read more EHRC warns of reputational damage for firms that don’t report pay gap In the UK retail sector as a whole, the gender pay gap is 16.4 per cent, according to the latest official figures, while across all businesses the gap is 17.4 per cent.
Ikea acknowledged that while it was ahead of many competitors on equal pay it still has more work to do to close the gap entirely.
Carin Hammer Blakebrough, Ikea’s HR manager for the ..

The Shift: Can Social Media Be Saved?

Can Social Media Be Saved? Photo Credit Glenn Harvey I don’t need to tell you that something is wrong with social media.
You’ve probably experienced it yourself. Maybe it’s the way you feel while scrolling through your Twitter feed — anxious, twitchy, a little world weary — or your unease when you see a child watching YouTube videos, knowing she’s just a few algorithmic nudges away from a rabbit hole filled with lunatic conspiracies and gore. Or maybe it was this month’s Facebook privacy scandal, which reminded you that you’ve entrusted the most intimate parts of your digital life to a profit-maximizing surveillance machine.
Our growing discomfort with our largest social platforms is reflected in polls. One recently conducted by Axios and SurveyMonkey found that all three of the major social media companies — Facebook, Twitter and Google, which shares a parent company with YouTube — are significantly less popular with Americans than they were five months ago. (And Americans might be th..

Tech Fix: Want to Purge Your Social Media Timelines? Can You Spare a Few Hours?

Want to Purge Your Social Media Timelines? Can You Spare a Few Hours? Photo Credit Minh Uong/The New York Times You may be reeling from revelations that the private Facebook data of millions unwittingly got in the hands of a voter-profiling firm with ties to President Trump. And you may be weighing the pros and cons of deleting your social media accounts altogether.
But before you go there, ask yourself a simpler question: Why do you hoard so much data on social networks in the first place?
For many of us, our timeline of posts has piled up since we signed up for Facebook and Twitter. While the social networks portray their products as time capsules of your fondest memories and conversations, the experience of poring through past posts is more like rummaging through a digital junk drawer of good, bad and ugly moments. And the hoarded data is just sitting out there for others to see, including potential employers who are doing background checks and any enemies who may be trying to dig u..

Trade Deals Take Years. Trump Wants to Remake Them in Months.

Trade Deals Take Years. Trump Wants to Remake Them in Months. Photo Shipping containers at the Port of Los Angeles in San Pedro, Calif. To secure trade agreements quickly, the White House has taken a contentious approach to negotiations. Credit Andrew Gombert/EPA, via Shutterstock Trade pacts typically require years of detailed negotiations. The North American Free Trade Agreement needed two years. Creation of the World Trade Organization took eight.
The Trump administration wants to remake global trade in a matter of months.
To secure agreements quickly, the White House has taken a contentious approach to negotiations not seen in decades, threatening allies and adversaries alike with harsh sanctions like tariffs and quotas. Those tactics have returned a few early concessions from trading partners, including South Korea, whose revised trade agreement was formally announced by the United States on Wednesday.
But it remains to be seen how much American workers would benefit from these de..