environment, pollination, food, honey bee health, federal initiative
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Honeybee Health Blooms at Federal Facilities Across US (Maria)

The author writes, “While judges, lawyers and support staff at the federal courthouse in Concord, New Hampshire, keep the American justice system buzzing, thousands of humble honeybees on the building’s roof are playing their part in a more important task — feeding the world. The Warren B. Rudman courthouse is one of several federal facilities around the country participating in the General Services Administration’s Pollinator Initiative, a government program aimed at assessing and promoting the health of bees and other pollinators, which are critical to life on Earth.”

Donald Trump Built a National Debt So Big (Even Before the Pandemic) That It’ll Weigh Down the Economy for Years (Al)

The authors write, “The ‘King of Debt’ promised to reduce the national debt — then his tax cuts made it surge. Add in the pandemic, and he oversaw the third-biggest deficit increase of any president.”

USAF Official Says He ‘Misspoke’ About AI Drone Killing Human Operator in Simulated Test (DonkeyHotey)

From Motherboard: “A USAF official who was quoted saying the Air Force conducted a simulated test where an AI drone killed its human operator is now saying he ‘misspoke’ and that the Air Force never ran this kind of test, in a computer simulation or otherwise. ‘Col Hamilton admits he “mis-spoke” in his presentation at the FCAS Summit and the “rogue AI drone simulation” was a hypothetical “thought experiment” from outside the military, based on plausible scenarios and likely outcomes rather than an actual USAF real-world simulation,’ the Royal Aeronautical Society, the organization where Hamilton talked about the simulated test, told Motherboard in an email.”

A Catch-22 for Clinics: State Bans Limit Abortion Counseling. Federal Title X Rules Require It. (Reader Steve)

From KFF Health News: “State abortion bans in Tennessee and beyond, which constrain women’s health care, have put family planning clinics at risk of losing their federal funding. The conflict involves the Title X family planning program, which provides services to low-income people, including minors. … Federal regulations for the program, which was established more than 50 years ago to reduce unintended pregnancies, say participating clinics must offer pregnant women information about terminating pregnancies and abortion referrals on request. But following those rules puts medical providers at odds with state laws banning abortion, some of which threaten jail time, fines, or the loss of medical licenses if they help someone end a pregnancy.”

AI: War Crimes Evidence Erased by Social Media Platforms (Sean)

From the BBC: “Evidence of potential human rights abuses may be lost after being deleted by tech companies, the BBC has found. Platforms remove graphic videos, often using artificial intelligence — but footage that may help prosecutions can be taken down without being archived. Meta and YouTube say they aim to balance their duties to bear witness and protect users from harmful content.”

What Happened When a Brooklyn Neighborhood Policed Itself for Five Days (Dana)

The author writes, “On a two-block stretch of Brownsville in April, the police stepped aside and let residents respond to 911 calls. It was a bold experiment that some believe could redefine law enforcement in New York City.”

A Billion New Air Conditioners Will Save Lives but Cook the Planet (Laura)

From “By one estimate, the world will add 1 billion ACs before the end of the decade. The market is projected to nearly double before 2040. That’s good for measures of public health and economic productivity; it’s unquestionably bad for the climate, and a global agreement to phase out the most harmful coolants could keep the appliances out of reach of many of the people who need them most.”

Scientists Find Way to Make Energy From Air Using Nearly Any Material (Russ)

The author writes, “Nearly any material can be used to turn the energy in air humidity into electricity, scientists found in a discovery that could lead to continuously producing clean energy with little pollution. The research, published in a paper in Advanced Materials, builds on 2020 work that first showed energy could be pulled from the moisture in the air using material harvested from bacteria. The new study shows nearly any material, such as wood or silicon, can be used, as long as it can be smashed into small particles and remade with microscopic pores. But there are many questions about how to scale the product.”

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