The Climate Legacy of Justice John Paul Stevens

The Protests in Puerto Rico Are About Life and Death ; How Do Mosquitoes Track You? ; and More Picks

Justice Stevens, EPA, emissions
The author writes, “Retired Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens, who died [Tuesday] at age 99, wrote the landmark 5-4 decision in 2007 that clearly gave [the] EPA the power to regulate [greenhouse gas] emissions. Why it matters: [The agency] began acting on that authority during the Obama years. Major rules include emissions standards for cars and power plants, which the Trump administration is weakening. Stevens also wrote the majority opinion in 1984's Chevron v. Natural Resources Defense Council, which gives agencies leeway to interpret statutes that are vague or silent on a topic. That’s important for regulators’ ability to craft rules on global warming.” Photo credit: Steve Petteway, US Supreme Court / Wikimedia
Reading Time: 2 minutes

Pentagon Contractor Allegedly Threatened to Kill Congresswoman Over Vaccine BIll (DonkeyHotey)

The author writes, “A Pentagon cybersecurity contractor has been charged with threatening to kill a member of Congress over the introduction of a bill that would require public schools to vaccinate children, according to a criminal complaint filed in U.S. District Court in the District of Maryland. Darryl Albert Varnum of Westminster, Maryland called the congressperson — identified only as ‘congressperson #1’ — on June 28, 2019, according to the complaint, and left a voicemail threatening to kill the member if the bill was introduced. ‘I’m gonna kill your ass if you do that bill. I swear,’ Varnum’s voicemail began.”

Fact-Checking Trump’s Misleading Attacks on Omar, Ocasio-Cortez in North Carolina (DonkeyHotey)

The authors write, “President Donald Trump sharpened his misleading and false attacks on a group of female Democratic congresswoman at a rally in Greenville, N.C., on July 17, claiming Rep. Ihlan Omar of Minnesota suggested that al-Qaida makes her proud and that Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York described America as garbage…” 

The Protests in Puerto Rico Are About Life and Death (Chris)

From NACLA: “The ongoing protests in Puerto Rico are not just about profane chat messages — they are a response to a broader context of violence, degradation, and exploitation.” 

As the World Grapples With Plastic, the US Makes More of It — A Lot More (Chris)

The author writes, “Production of the most common plastic, polyethylene, is on track to jump more than 40 percent by 2028 in the U.S., according to research firm S&P Global Platts. That’s 8 million metric tons per year more than in 2018 — roughly the amount, coincidentally, that scientists estimate is annually flowing into the oceans now. In the last two years alone, companies such as ExxonMobil and Dow have built or started construction on at least 17 new U.S. polyethylene plants and lines, according to a Center for Public Integrity review of corporate plans. It’s a surge largely centered along the coasts of Texas and Louisiana.”

How Do Mosquitoes Track You? (Reader Steve)

The author writes, “Female yellow fever mosquitoes can smell you from more than 100 feet away, and just a whiff of your breath likely enhances their vision and triggers a flight response that can send the bloodsuckers homing after you, according to new research from the University of Washington.”

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