Covid-19's Toll on Prison Labor Doesn't Just Hurt Inmates

Covid-19's Toll on Prison Labor Doesn't Just Hurt Inmates

In at least 20 states, from Florida to Michigan to Texas to California, incarcerated workers are making hand sanitizer, face masks, and protective gowns at prison manufacturing facilities.Social distancing is hard in prison workplaces, and incarcerated people are unable to self-quarantine to avoid Covid-19 when they’re off the job.

How Is the Coronavirus Pandemic Affecting Climate Change?

How Is the Coronavirus Pandemic Affecting Climate Change?

Back in February, an analysis by the climate group Carbon Brief found that as the pandemic seized hold of China’s economy and heavy industries shuttered, emissions from the country plummeted by an incredible 25 percent.

The Magical Thinking of the White House's New Covid-19 Plan

The Magical Thinking of the White House's New Covid-19 Plan

The White House on Thursday introduced what President Donald Trump called a “phased and deliberate approach” to lifting social-distancing requirements intended to slow the spread of the pandemic disease Covid-19 in the United States.

Trump Eases the Way for More Gas Guzzlers

Trump Eases the Way for More Gas Guzzlers

After three years of tumult and revised scientific analyses, the Trump administration Tuesday formally relaxed Obama-era fuel economy rules that aimed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and stall the effects of climate change .Under the new rules, automakers will have to meet less stringent targets for cars and light-duty trucks through 2026.

The Coronavirus Pandemic Is Bringing Down Emissions, but Not for Long

The Coronavirus Pandemic Is Bringing Down Emissions, but Not for Long

“When the Chinese economy does recover, they are likely to see an increase in emissions in the short term to sort of make up for lost time, in terms of production,” says Zeke Hausfather, a climate scientist and the director of climate and energy at the Breakthrough Institute, which advocates for climate action.

New Safety Gizmos Are Making Car Insurance More Expensive

New Safety Gizmos Are Making Car Insurance More Expensive

The surge, detailed in a new report from insurance shopping site The Zebra, outpaced both inflation (by far) and the increase in average car prices (more narrowly).It turns out that new features designed to keep vehicles in their lanes and out of trouble are contributing to rising insurance rates.

Trump Can Now Exit the Paris Accord. It's Still a Bad Idea

Trump Can Now Exit the Paris Accord. It's Still a Bad Idea

Rob Jackson, who documents greenhouse gas emissions as chair of the Global Carbon Project, worries that Trump’s move sends a bad signal to wobbly countries like Brazil and Australia that have had a hard time meeting stated climate goals.

America’s ‘Green Economy’ Is Now Worth $1.4 Trillion

America’s ‘Green Economy’ Is Now Worth $1.4 Trillion

That’s why Maslin and lead author Lucien Georgeson accumulated their own data on the U.S. green economy, drawing on hundreds of often private databases containing granular, real-world business and transaction statistics.

Corporate America's Second War With the Rule of Law

Corporate America's Second War With the Rule of Law

Last month, after a fierce lobbying battle, California passed a law that will likely end up mandating that companies in the “gig economy,” such as Uber, treat gig workers as employees .

New Electrics, New Laws, and Other Car News This Week

New Electrics, New Laws, and Other Car News This Week

But we saw stages set for two huge shifts this week: One was in Frankfurt, where automakers gathered to show off their latest and greatest concept cars, a melange of hybrid and electric shinies.

The Fight Over Fuel Economy Rules Gets Messy

The Fight Over Fuel Economy Rules Gets Messy

That’s why the Obama administration decided in 2012 to (slowly) strengthen regulations governing vehicles’ tailpipe emissions and fuel economy standards, requiring each automaker’s fleet to average 54.5 miles per gallon by 2025 and boosting the penalty for missing that target.

What Recession? Low Interest Rates Could Mean Tech-Fueled Growth

What Recession? Low Interest Rates Could Mean Tech-Fueled Growth

The past predictability of the inverted yield curve has led to today’s widespread assumption that the US economy is slowing and will soon dip into recession; market watchers have thus begun to view economic data with an eye toward seeing problems ahead.

Analysis: Hydrogen’s Plunging Price Boosts Role as Climate Solution

Analysis: Hydrogen’s Plunging Price Boosts Role as Climate Solution

“Once the industry scales up, renewable hydrogen could be produced from wind or solar power for the same price as natural gas in most of Europe and Asia,” Kobad Bhavnagri, BNEF’s head of special projects, said in the report on Wednesday.

How the iPhone Helped Save the Planet

How the iPhone Helped Save the Planet

The more than 2 billion iPhones sold since Apple first launched it exactly 12 years ago have done a lot of good for their owners, but it seems like they’ve been bad news for the planet.

Fiat Leans Toward Trump as Industry Agonizes Over Fuel Rules

Fiat Leans Toward Trump as Industry Agonizes Over Fuel Rules

In its written comments submitted to regulators last year, Fiat Chrysler said it agrees with one of the Trump administration’s central arguments: Stricter fuel-efficiency mandates drive up new vehicle prices, keeping older, dirtier and less-safe cars on the road longer.

Are Rare Earths the Next Pawn in the US-China Trade War?

Are Rare Earths the Next Pawn in the US-China Trade War?

China is the leading producer and processor of rare earths, with about 37 percent of the world's reserves, according to a US Geological Survey report. But nearly all the rare earths used in products that reach the US are processed in China, including ore mined in Mountain Pass.

White House Rejects Carmaker Plea for California Pact on Emissions

White House Rejects Carmaker Plea for California Pact on Emissions

White House spokesman Judd Deere, responding to the letter on Friday, said the California Air Resource Board “failed to put forward a productive alternative, and we are moving forward to finalize a rule with the goal of promoting safer, cleaner, and more affordable vehicles.”.

Adam Savage Tells Us How (and Why) He Makes Stuff

Adam Savage Tells Us How (and Why) He Makes Stuff

You might know Adam Savage as the co-host of the television show MythBusters , as the editor of , or as the host of countless web videos that show him building machines, sewing costumes for Comic-Con, and occasionally blowing something up in his San Francisco workshop.

The Rise and Fall of Facebook’s Memory Economy

The Rise and Fall of Facebook’s Memory Economy

Facebook’s Memories feature—where it shows you pictures and posts from a day in the recent or far-gone past—used to be my favorite thing about the platform.

Andrew Yang's Presidential Bid Is So Very 21st Century

Andrew Yang's Presidential Bid Is So Very 21st Century

He’s applying that approach to more standard issue problems, like labor, climate change, and the economy, but giving them a decidedly tech-forward approach: how (and why) we should define robots, what use might geoengineering have in saving the planet, and should the government embrace universal basic income and give every American a $1,000 check.

For Workers in the Gig Economy, Client Interactions Can Get … Weird

For Workers in the Gig Economy, Client Interactions Can Get … Weird

And the already-ambiguous situation is further complicated by the fact that most gig workers are independent contractors who need good reviews from the client and who don’t have access to an open-door human resources department or colleagues they can complain to.

Legal Scholar Tim Wu Says the US Must Enforce Antitrust Laws

Legal Scholar Tim Wu Says the US Must Enforce Antitrust Laws

Wu, a law professor at Columbia best known for coining the term "net neutrality," details how presidents of both parties used the Sherman Antitrust Act of 1890, which outlawed monopolistic business practices, to split up the likes of Standard Oil and AT&T, and to block anticompetitive mergers.

The Piracy Wars Are Over. Let's Talk about Data Incumbency

The Piracy Wars Are Over. Let's Talk about Data Incumbency

The EU copyright proposals reflect the view that the main problem for artists is still Internet “piracy” in different forms, such as the notional “ value gap ” between what the recording industry gets paid for licensed music by YouTube and other platforms, and what it thinks it should get paid.

Manufacturing Advocacy Group Says Green New Deal Could Cost Consumers $244 Billion in Replacement Costs

Manufacturing Advocacy Group Says Green New Deal Could Cost Consumers $244 Billion in Replacement Costs

On Feb. 14, its president, David Holt, issued the following statement: The Green New Deal is not a practical solution for American consumers. This segment of the population lacks the financial resources to replace the most essential appliances the Green New Deal would require.

The Wretched, Climate-Killing Truth About American Sprawl

The Wretched, Climate-Killing Truth About American Sprawl

Suggestions of specific policies that would enable a Green New Deal to address land use have already emerged: We could, simply, measure greenhouse gases from our transportation system or build more housing closer to jobs centers.

How to diversify Bhutan’s economy?

How to diversify Bhutan’s economy?

However, Bhutan needs to do a better job at diversifying its economy by improving its physical and human capital by using resource rents from hydropower.

Think the Rust Belt Is Struggling? Welcome to Romania

Think the Rust Belt Is Struggling? Welcome to Romania

“Every town had an industrial center, and people were moved all over the country to these areas to work in the mines and factories,” says photographer Ioana Cîrlig , who grew up in the Romanian capital of Bucharest in the 1990s after the fall of Communism.

Shouldn’t We All Have Seamless Micropayments By Now?

Shouldn’t We All Have Seamless Micropayments By Now?

If you buy things directly from small vendors, you’re stuck entering your credit card information, your email, and your billing address on site after site—sinking ever deeper into the surveillance economy as each digital form puts your personal details into someone else’s database, while also giving hackers ever more opportunities to filch your data.

Meet the Workers Who Build an Entire City of Ice Every Year

Meet the Workers Who Build an Entire City of Ice Every Year

It takes almost 200,000 cubic meters of ice to construct the festival every year, all of it cut out of the frozen Songhua River in 700-kilogram blocks by a small army of local laborers.

We Need to Not Freak Out About the Robot Revolution

We Need to Not Freak Out About the Robot Revolution

"Because building things is great and important, but let's not have nostalgia for the days where my great grandfather would be on an assembly line losing a finger every four years." Marlene Awaad/Bloomberg/Getty Images You, like me, may sometimes (or all the time!) feel that the world is spiraling out of control—trade wars and political strife.