✨Good morning! Today is Wednesday, June 12, 2019, and even though it just warmed up, we’re getting excited for winter. (At least this part of it.)
BULLETIN: HEATING OUR COASTS OFF
• The Background
It seems like every week (if not every day) there’s a new report that warns the world just how badly things are going for our planet, and unfortunately, yesterday was another one of those days. A group of researchers from England, Germany, Netherlands, the United States and Canada, released a report that says the Canadian coastline in the Arctic is melting at an alarming rate — more alarming than previously thought. The rate of collapse (which is up to a metre per day! 🤬) is six times faster than the average over the past 65 years. According to one of the researchers, “big chunks of land were breaking away” and those chunks often disappeared completely by the very next day. While coastline erosion is pretty normal (and often inevitable), it’s the rate that the world needs to pay attention to. CTV News
• What Else You Need to Know
That wasn’t all the bad news. Another report released yesterday by an international team of marine biologists painted a pretty grim picture of what’s going on in our oceans and how it’s going to change if we don’t get our sh*t together. According to the research, the world’s oceans will likely lose approximately 17% of marine life by the end of the century if climate change continues “on its current path.” More specifically, for every degree the oceans warm, we’ll naturally lose 5% of the ocean’s inhabitants (which means that doesn’t account for human-caused death like fishing).
• What’s Next?
Hopefully an impetus for change. If we can get climate change under control (a.k.a. coming up with real political plans that can make a difference), we can limit the losses of marine life to 5% and slow the depletion of our Arctic coastlines.
• When it Rains, it Pours
As a severe cyclone (named Storm Vayu) is expected to land tomorrow morning in the Indian state of Gujarat, officials are preparing to move about 300,000 people away from the western coast. The storm originated in the Arabian sea, and its winds have escalated to 135 kilometres per hour. Gujarat is home to seaports and India’s biggest oil refinery that all lie in Storm Vayu’s path. Unfortunately the Indian coast is no stranger to cyclones — the government is equipped to open shelters and move people from the most vulnerable areas of the storm. CBC News
• U.S.: Court Order
Those who defy the House of Representatives will feel its wrath — at least if Democrats have anything to say about it. Yesterday, the Democrat-controlled House voted in favour of giving the House Judiciary Committee the power to go before a federal court to seek the Department of Justice’s compliance with subpoenas. (If you recall, several members of Trump’s administration and inner circle have been told to ignore said subpoenas. The resolution specifically names Attorney General William Barr and former White House counsel, Don McGhan.) The vote went strictly along party lines with 229 Democrats voting in favour and 191 Republicans voting against. There were no defectors from either party. The Hill
• World: Freeing the Free Press
In a shocking turn of events, Russian authorities abruptly dropped all charges yesterday against high-profile investigative reporter, Ivan Golunuv. In a global show of support, Russian newspapers and the public rallied around the journalist, who was arrested after being allegedly framed by police. Gulunov, who was stopped and searched by police on Thursday in Moscow, was found carrying drugs, which press freedom activists claim were planted on him in order to silence the investigative journalist from releasing sensitive government information. Russia, which is ranked 83rd out of 100 countries for press freedom, is notorious for controlling the media. The remarkable turnaround highlighted a rare instance in which Russian officials have admitted a mistake, and also underscored the challenges faced by Russian journalists when reporting on controversial, government-related topics. BBC News
📣 QUOTE OF THE DAY
“One flag should fly, and that’s the American flag.”
– Vice President Mike Pence, on the Trump administration’s move to prohibit U.S. embassies from flying the pride flag during LGBTQ Pride Month. (So pole-rizing.) NBC News
• Leaving Lavalin
SNC-Lavalin Group’s CEO Neil Bruce is stepping down after four (very) eventful years. SNC’s chief operating officer, Ian Edwards, has been named interim CEO until the board of directors elects someone new. The company embodied the eye-roll emoji as it explained that the decision to appoint a new CEO shouldn’t come as a surprise given the recent scandal and its $17-million loss in the last quarter. The Canadian government still hasn’t ruled out a criminal trial, which would ultimately force the company out of the U.S. and cost thousands of people their jobs. Edwards has more than 30 years of experience, and will serve as a stable interim CEO until the company finds a permanent replacement. CTV News
• A (Drop)Box of Goodies
Everyone loves a combo deal, and apparently so does Dropbox Inc. Yesterday, the cloud storage provider announced that the software will now pull together a variety of work-related tools into one spot. The company’s new “workspace” will allow users to create and share documents from both Microsoft Office and Google Docs, as well as engage in conversations and video chats from Slack or Zoom Video. Dropbox CEO Drew Houston said that the new software will create a more collaborative workspace as users can work together on files without having to bounce between several windows. (We’ll file that under super helpful.) Reuters
GO SEA FOR YOURSELF
What better way to kick-off the start of summer than with an exciting adventure?SeaWorld has new roller coasters and they’re wetter, wilder and more thrilling than ever. Ride the tide on Tidal Twister at SeaWorld San Diego, or brave the rapids on Infinity Falls at SeaWorld Orlando, the park’s first attraction featuring a fresh water conservation message. At Busch Gardens Tampa Bay, Tigris™ is Florida’s tallest launch coaster and the park’s ninth coaster.
But we can’t forget the best news: if you buy tickets in advance, Canadian residents can save up to 35%!
• Ballin’ Athletes
In the world of professional athletics, salaries are growing increasingly high, resulting from exorbitant TV contracts. The cutoff to crack Forbes‘ list of the world’s 100 highest-paid athletes was $17.3 million five years ago, but today, it has jumped to a whopping $25 million. The top 100 leading earners in the world of professional sports play in 10 different sports and hail from 25 countries. Lionel Messi, renowned Argentinian soccer player, claimed the top spot, with a casual $127 million in annual earnings. (Don’t worry, we’re rethinking our career paths, too.) Other noteworthy names include tennis superstar Roger Federer and several NBA players, including Steph Curry (who ranked No. 9), and Kevin Durant, coming right behind him at No. 10. Forbes
• A First for First Nations
Netflix is continuing to invest in Canada and the streaming giant’s Canadian content. Yesterday, the company announced new partnerships with three Indigenous cultural organizations in Canada — imagineNATIVE, the Indigenous Screen Office, and Wapikoni Mobile — to “help foster and develop screen talent.” The partnerships are part of a five-year $25-million investment Netflix committed to making in Canada in order to support the next generation of Canadian creators. The three partnerships brings Netflix’s total number of Canadian partnerships to 14, which all focus on “underserved communities,” including Indigenous, women and francophone creators. Global News
• Something Smells Off
There are a few telltale signs that you’re guilty of a crime, including being caught in the act. But one New Hampshire man didn’t think that was such a giveaway. After being caught with 250 grams of weed, 13 Xanax pills and a small baggie of cocaine in his backpack, he tried to convince officers that the drugs weren’t his — even though he very clearly had cocaine covering his nostrils. The man was pulled over by deputies, who noticed a white, powdery substance on his nose, and once swabbed, found that the substance tested positive for cocaine content. (Shocker.) The 20-year-old was (obviously) arrested on drug charges. CBS News
⚡️ STRAIGHT TO THE POINT
• The protests in Hong Kong against a controversial extradition bill that we told you about earlier this week escalated Wednesday, with police using rubber bullets, tear gas and bean bag rounds against activists.
• Believe it or not, 90% of Canadians fall for fake news, according to a new poll.
• The Ebola outbreak in the Congo has spread outside the country. Uganda just confirmed its first case.
• Minutes before Alberta Premier Jason Kenney’s speech yesterday, a passionate protestor stormed onto the stage at the Global Petroleum Show in Calgary, saying he does not want Alberta to be “polluted.”
• Mozilla Firefox is launching a paid subscription plan, where users can pay US $10 per month for access to premium features like VPN service or cloud storage.
• Freedom to Love
Today is the 52nd anniversary of the iconic 1967 SCOTUS decision: Loving v. Virginia, a case that brought down state laws banning interracial marriage that — believe it or not — were still active in 16 U.S. states. The case stemmed from the story of a real-life couple, Mildred Jeter and Richard Loving.
• Liar, Liar
We knew the next generation had issues, but we didn’t realize things were this bad.