Study rewrites understanding of modern Japan’s genetic ancestry

– An analysis of ancient DNA is transforming the understanding of the genetic ancestry of Japan’s modern-day population, identifying a crucial contribution from people who arrived about 1,700 years ago and helped revolutionize Japanese culture. Research published on Friday showed that the people of Japan bear genetic signatures from three ancient populations rather than just two as previously thought – a more complex ancestry for the archipelago nation of roughly 125 million. The researchers analyzed…

"Study rewrites understanding of modern Japan’s genetic ancestry"

Countries’ emissions pledges still fall short of global climate goals, UN says

BRUSSELS – Countries’ latest pledges to cut emissions would fail to avert catastrophic climate change, the United Nations said on Friday, as pressure grows on polluters including China and India to set more ambitious targets before the COP26 summit in November. The U.N. COP26 conference aims to secure more ambitious climate action from the nearly 200 countries who signed the 2015 Paris Agreement and agreed to try to limit human-caused global warming to 1.5 degrees…

"Countries’ emissions pledges still fall short of global climate goals, UN says"

Gay war veteran speaks out for equal rights in Ukraine’s military

KYIV – Viktor Pylypenko has become a role model for dozens of LGBT+ Ukrainian war veterans and their supporters since he organised their participation two years ago in Kyiv’s largest ever gay pride march. Pylypenko, 34, spent almost two years from 2014 to 2016 on the frontline fighting with Kyiv’s forces against Russian-backed separatists in eastern Ukraine in a conflict that has claimed at least 14,000 lives. He came out as gay in 2018. “(LGBT…

"Gay war veteran speaks out for equal rights in Ukraine’s military"

Mining firms in Mexico must face ‘strict’ scrutiny, says senior official

MEXICO CITY – Mining companies in Mexico should expect tough environmental reviews given their projects’ major impacts, a senior official told , insisting that a backlog of evaluations is easing despite industry claims that the opposite is true. A top-10 global producer of over a dozen minerals, Mexico’s multi-billion-dollar mining sector makes up around 8% of Latin America’s second-biggest economy, but miners are concerned they are facing increased hostility from Mexico’s leftist government. Tonatiuh Herrera,…

"Mining firms in Mexico must face ‘strict’ scrutiny, says senior official"

Biden convenes world leaders to discuss climate change ahead of Glasgow summit

WASHINGTON – President Joe Biden convenes world leaders on Friday for a discussion about intensifying efforts to tackle climate change, seeking to build momentum ahead of an international summit on global warming later this year. Biden will hold a virtual meeting of the Major Economies Forum (MEF) from the White House in a follow-up to an Earth Day meeting he hosted in April to unveil new U.S. greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets and press other…

"Biden convenes world leaders to discuss climate change ahead of Glasgow summit"

Extreme heat ravages Greece’s mussel harvest

THERMAIC GULF, Greece – Fisherman Stefanos Sougioultzis cracks open the mussels he cultivated in Greece’s Aegean Sea only to find scores of empty shells. After a summer of scorching heat and warming waters, it was “as if they boiled in their own environment”, he says. “Twenty-five years in mussel farming, we did not expect – we could not imagine – this,” Sougioultzis said aboard his boat in the Thermaic Gulf near Thessaloniki in northern Greece,…

"Extreme heat ravages Greece’s mussel harvest"

Northern Irish police charge two over killing of journalist Lyra McKee

BELFAST – Northern Irish police said on Thursday they had charged two men with the 2019 murder of journalist Lyra McKee in Londonderry, whose death sparked outrage in the British-run province. The men, aged 21 and 33, were also charged with rioting and possession of a firearm with intent to endanger life, the Police Service of Northern Ireland said in a statement. The men were due in court on Friday, the statement said. The New…

"Northern Irish police charge two over killing of journalist Lyra McKee"

Delhi orders ban on pollutive firecrackers ahead of Diwali to ‘save lives’

(Corrects to remove extraneous word from headline) NEW DELHI – Delhi authorities ordered a ban on the storage, use and sale of firecrackers in the Indian capital late on Wednesday ahead of the Diwali festival to curb air pollution levels which cause thousands of deaths each year. India is among the most polluted countries in the world, and air quality in Delhi and neighbouring northern states normally begins to deteriorate at the end of September…

"Delhi orders ban on pollutive firecrackers ahead of Diwali to ‘save lives’"

Ocean Cleanup struggles to fulfill promise to scoop up plastic at sea

VICTORIA, Canada – Docked at a Canadian port, crew members returned from a test run of the Ocean Cleanup’s system to rid the Pacific of plastic trash were thrilled by the meager results — even as marine scientists and other ocean experts doubted the effort could succeed. The non-profit, launched in 2013 amid buoyant media coverage, hopes to clear 90% of floating plastic from the world’s oceans by 2040. But the group’s own best-case scenario…

"Ocean Cleanup struggles to fulfill promise to scoop up plastic at sea"

Biofuel makers seeks changes to aviation fuel tax credit in Biden spending plan

– Biofuel producers are seeking last-minute changes to a proposal to boost production of sustainable aviation fuel tucked in the Democrat’s $3.5 trillion spending plan that they say will allow the nation’s farmers to join the emerging multi-billion market. The changes center on how the carbon-saving benefits of producing the fuel are measured, and could force the White House to choose between environmental groups who believe using land and food supply for fuel squanders earth’s…

"Biofuel makers seeks changes to aviation fuel tax credit in Biden spending plan"