Senators Opposing Green New Deal Are Drowning in Fossil Fuel Cash

The senators and representatives who oppose the Green New Deal have accepted several times more fossil fuel money than its supporters.

Follow the Money

The senators and representatives who support or have co-sponsored the Green New Deal, the ambitious package of proposals to combat global climate change, have received far less money from the fossil fuel industry than their opponents, according to HuffPost.

The clear divide between legislators who’ve received large donations from oil, gas, and coal companies and those who haven’t shows that, as far as U.S. leaders are concerned, cash is still king.

Break it Down

The 12 senators who have agreed to co-sponsor the Green New Deal have taken a total of $1.1 million worth of fossil fuel campaign contributions over the course Lees verder

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Scientists Discovered a Star That Explodes Every Year

Scientists have discovered a star in the Andromeda Galaxy that explodes every year — the first of its kind in the known universe.

Explosive Strength

Scientists have discovered a star in the Andromeda Galaxy that explodes every year — the first of its kind in the known universe.

“When we first discovered that M31N 2008-12a erupted every year, we were very surprised,” San Diego State University astrophysicist Allen Shafter said in a press release.

Blowing Up

Shafter and colleagues describe the peculiar star in a new paper published in the journal Nature.

M31N 2008-12a’s explosive routine, they believe, is due to its codependent relationship with a nearby star. It constantly sucks away its companion’s hydrogen, which explodes violently about once per year.

Big Bang

The constant explosions Lees verder

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Journal Retracts Ethics Article by Doctor Who Gene Edited Babies

When news broke of He Jiankui's infamous gene editing research, an academic journal published his ethical guidelines. Now the article has been retracted.

Take it Back

He Jiankui, the Chinese scientist who edited the genome of a human embryo that eventually developed into a pair of living twins, justified his work by publishing a set of ethical guidelines for how genetic researchers can move their field forward.

Now those guidelines have been retracted by The CRISPR Journal — because He failed to disclose his many conflicts of interest on the matter, according to Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News.

Interesting Choice

News broke of He’s controversial research in late November, right around when The CRISPR Journal decided to publish his article on genetic ethics.

He’s article focused on Lees verder

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Japan Just Landed a Robot Spacecraft on an Asteroid

Japanese spacecraft Hayabusa2 just touched down on the surface of Ryugu for the third time to collect samples after firing a bullet at its surface.


Japanese spacecraft Hayabusa2 touched down on the surface of Ryugu Friday — a kilometer-wide asteroid with an orbit that periodically brings it close to Earth as it circles the Sun.

And the probe has already completed the first big step of its primary mission: collect tiny rock samples to send home.

Upon landing, Hayabusa2 fired a metal bullet into the rock and scooped up some samples using its on-board “sampling horn.”

Cambridge: AI Might Help Us Avoid “Environmental Catastrophe”

The University of Cambridge has launched a new center focused on finding ways to use AI to address problems with the environment.

Data Collectors

From images taken by satellites to measurements recorded by increasingly sensitive sensors, we now have more data about our environment than ever before.

But we’re not yet at the point where we can effectively make use of all this information, according to Simon Redfern, Head of the University of Cambridge’s Department of Earth Sciences.

“Such huge datasets pose their own challenges… and new methods need to be developed to tap their potential and to use this information to guide our path away from environmental catastrophe,” Redfern said in a press release about the university’s efforts to confront threats to the Lees verder

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SpaceX Just Launched the First Commercial Lunar Lander, Ever

Making History

It’s official: Israeli space company SpaceIL’s lunar lander Beresheet just launched into space aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket this evening, from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. SpaceX confirmed the successful deployment just after 9:30pm EST.

If all goes well, the dishwasher-sized spacecraft will be the first private spacecraft to ever reach the lunar surface.

A Long Way to Go

SpaceIL is planning for the spacecraft, which is called the Beresheet, to land in April after slowly expanding its elliptical path around the Earth until it’s close enough to the Moon. It will circle the Moon several times before making its way Lees verder

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Watch a Self-Driving Car Obey Police Hand Signals

self-driving car company Waymo recently shared a video showing one of its autonomous vehicles being waved through an intersection where the light was out.

Palm Reading

For autonomous vehicles that rely on smooth roads and clear signals, a broken traffic light could conceivably pose a major problem.

To get around the problem of a missing green light, self-driving car company Waymo trained its vehicles’ artificial intelligence to detect and respond to the arm movements of a traffic cop as they wave traffic through an intersection, according to CNET — and you can watch it on YouTube.

Long Time Coming

Waymo first claimed that its autonomous vehicles could respond to hand signals from nearby cyclists back in 2016. That particular research treated cyclists, from the vehicle’s perspective, as Lees verder

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“Holy Herb” Shows Promise as Alzheimer’s Treatment

Old Medicine

The name native California tribes gave to the plant Eriodictyon californicum — “Yerba santa” — translates to “holy herb” in English, and the moniker is a testament to the tribes’ respect for the plant, which they used to treat everything from headaches to sore muscles.

Now, in a heartening old-meets-new finding, scientists think they may have discovered yet another ailment Yerba santa has the potential to treat: Alzheimer’s disease.

Brain Protector

In a study published in the journal Redox Biology on Wednesday, researchers from the Salk Institute detail their discovery that Yerba santa could be useful for treating Alzheimer’s.

They started Lees verder

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NASA Warns SpaceX and Boeing About Safety Flaws in Spacecraft

NASA commissioned SpaceX and Boeing to develop shuttles for crewed missions. Upcoming test flights may be delayed as NASA found several safety flaws.

Back to the Basics

Both Boeing and SpaceX are working to develop tools for NASA to use in upcoming crewed missions from the International Space Station.

While NASA planned on launching test flights over the next few months, the whole program may be delayed as the government agency has found over 30 technical flaws or safety hazards for each company’s system, according to Reuters — a startling rebuke of the efforts of two premier private spaceflight companies to do work for the U.S. government.

“SpaceX and Boeing both have challenges, both comparable, from a safety perspective,” a source from within the government told Reuters.

Plan Lees verder

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China Unveils the World’s First Female AI News Anchor

China's state-run media outlet Xinhua adds a female AI news anchor to its news team, and she'll make her professional debut in March.

A New Woman

On Tuesday, China’s state-run news outlet Xinhua announced the latest addition to its news team: Xin Xiaomeng.

But Xin never went to journalism school — or any school — because “she” is not a real person. Instead, she’s an artificial intelligence created by Xinhua and search engine Sogou — making her the world’s first female AI news anchor.

Two Sessions, Three AIs

Xin will make her professional debut during March’s Two Sessions, the name given to a pair of annual meetings featuring China’s legislature and its top political advisory body.

She won’t be the only AI news Lees verder

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