News in a Minute: March 29

Elena Hochheiser and Emily Vaughan, Writer

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Brexit: Officially Starts Today

This morning, British Prime Minister Theresa May signed the letter that will announce the United Kingdom’s exit from the European Union. Citizens of the UK voted on the bill last July, with an overwhelming majority of younger citizens voting to remain in the EU, and a larger majority of older citizens voting to leave. Now, nine months later, Theresa May is officially triggering the process for the United Kingdom to leave the EU permanently. Many persons believe that leaving the EU will be better for business and travel in the UK as a whole. However, experts in economics and European affairs think otherwise.The signed letter will be delivered to the European Council early this afternoon. The UK and EU will have two years to negotiate the terms of “Brexit”, and the United Kingdom will officially leave the EU on March 29, 2019.

President Trump Rolls Back Environmental Regulations

Yesterday, President Trump succeeded in doing the first thing in office that he actually promised to do on the campaign trail– rolling back environmental regulations that limit burning of coal, create terms for the leasing of federal land to coal companies, and force government agencies to account for climate change and global warming. The new executive order repeals an EPA plan to limit coal factory emissions. It also repeals a clause in former government regulations that forced agencies to account for global warming and climate change and abide by rules already in place for companies and organizations. In fact, the new order essentially tells those agencies to ignore global warming and climate change and to act as if they did not exist. Trump claimed that his executive order will revive thousands of jobs in the coal industry. However, experts all agree– the coal industry is dying, and for good reason– coal costs more than wind energy, solar energy, and natural gas, and also has a worse environmental impact than all of them.

World’s Largest Dinosaur Tracks Discovered in Australia

Walmadany, Dampier Peninsula, Australia: this stretch of the northwestern Australian coast is the most diverse collection of dinosaur tracks on the Earth. This stretch of only 16 mile contains the footprints of 21 different types of dinosaurs. One notable addition to the collection is the largest dinosaur tracks to be studied. Walmadany, the site, is called by some “Australia’s own Jurassic Park.” The tracks are located on a rock formation called Broome Sandstone, which is between 127 and 140 million years old. The largest tracks there are also the largest in the world: each one is nearly six feet long, and are from a long-necked sauropod. The site was introduced to palaeontologists in 2008 in an effort by the Goolarabooloo people (who have known about the site for years before), to prevent natural gas processing. Within 400 hours, or 16.5 days, 150 prints were already recorded. The natural gas project never happened.

 

Congress Votes to Overturn Internet Privacy Regulation

The House of Representatives and the Senate have voted to overturn and internet privacy regulation that protects consumer’s data. The regulation that has not yet taken effect would require service providers to get consumers permission before selling their data. While this is good news for the service providers, it is a major loss for advocates of internet privacy. But what does all of this mean? Basically, internet service providers collect data on what people use their internet for. This privacy regulation would would make the providers ask permission of users before selling the data on what they do to advertisements. The bill was Republican introduced, and passed through Congress. It is now awaiting signature from the president.

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