Australia Has Finally Woken Up to Climate Change

Australia Has Finally Woken Up to Climate Change

Labor went into the election with a range of climate and energy promises, including a commitment to a 43 percent reduction in emissions, which McKenzie says is “certainly not enough.” Analysis suggests this is still consistent with 2 degrees of warming.

A New Gas-Guzzling Postal Fleet Could Be Halted by Lawsuits

A New Gas-Guzzling Postal Fleet Could Be Halted by Lawsuits

“Once this purchase goes through, we’ll be stuck with more than 100,000 new gas-guzzling vehicles on neighborhood streets, serving homes across our state and across the country, for the next 30 years,” Bonta said.

Easy access to environmental research data

Easy access to environmental research data

New Zealand’s seven Crown Research Institutes (CRIs) have created the National Environmental Data Centre (NEDC) website to make the environmental information held by CRIs more accessible to all New Zealanders.

How Prescribed Burns Can Help Restore Eastern US Forests

How Prescribed Burns Can Help Restore Eastern US Forests

A growing movement of scientists, land management agencies, conservation organizations, and Indigenous groups is working to return fire to marshes like this one and to fire-adapted forests and grasslands throughout the United States.

Inside the International Effort to Save One Tiny Mexican Fish

Inside the International Effort to Save One Tiny Mexican Fish

The ambitious conservation translocation project began in 1998 when English aquarist Ivan Dibble arrived at Michoacán University with some very precious cargo—five pairs of tequila fish from England’s Chester Zoo. No one knows exactly why the tequila fish went extinct in the wild, but it was likely a combination of pollution and invasive species moving in, according to scientists at the zoo.

The North Carolina Town Besieged by Armadillos

The North Carolina Town Besieged by Armadillos

Bullard, an affable man in a camouflaged shirt, with a sonorous voice and prodigious beard, has rapidly gone from never seeing an armadillo in his bucolic corner of western North Carolina to killing 15 of them last year.The standard .22 rifles Bullard used on the first armadillos didn’t seem to kill them outright.

Ground-Level Ozone Is a Creeping Threat to Biodiversity

Ground-Level Ozone Is a Creeping Threat to Biodiversity

Ozone levels at Sequoia and the adjacent national park, King’s Canyon, are among the highest in the United States, thanks to smog that blows in from the urban areas and farming and industrial activity in the San Joaquin Valley below.

Despite Union Setback, Amazon Workers Fight for Dignity

Despite Union Setback, Amazon Workers Fight for Dignity

It wasn’t exactly political sabotage, says Alessandro Delfanti, a University of Toronto communications professor who heard the story while interviewing warehouse workers for a book about Amazon.

Who Won Amazon’s Union Election in Bessemer? The Results Could Take Time

Who Won Amazon’s Union Election in Bessemer? The Results Could Take Time

In an election that saw an unmarked ballot box of mysterious origin appear on company grounds, a website spread misleading information about dues-paying, and the timing change on a traffic light where organizers talked to workers, some observers believe the RWDSU has ample grist for a ULP charge or three against Amazon.

A New Snapshot of a Black Hole Reveals Its Mysterious Physics

A New Snapshot of a Black Hole Reveals Its Mysterious Physics

Two years ago, the Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) made headlines with its announcement of the first direct image of a black hole.Now the EHT collaboration is back with another groundbreaking result: a new image of the same black hole, this time showing how it looks in polarized light.

Covid Spilled From Animals to Humans. Now It’s Spilling Back

Covid Spilled From Animals to Humans. Now It’s Spilling Back

But within a few months, as the coronavirus spread rapidly through the world’s human population, it leapt from people back into an animal species: minks, being raised in confinement on fur farms.

Border Disputes Threaten Climate Science in the Himalayas

Border Disputes Threaten Climate Science in the Himalayas

“Sometimes conflicts like that just make it harder for us to go and work,” says David Molden, former director general of the International Center for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD), an intergovernmental institution based in Nepal that works with the eight countries of the Hindu Kush Himalayan region to protect its fragile ecosystem and tackle climate change.

The UK Is the Latest Country to Tighten the Screws on Uber

The UK Is the Latest Country to Tighten the Screws on Uber

Lawmakers, jurists, labor unions, and organizers want the companies to treat their workers better, even as the companies remain unprofitable.“Over the past 12 months, there’s been a pendulum swing by the courts towards protecting worker rights in the gig economy,” says Ruwan Subasinghe, the legal director of the International Transport Workers’ Federation, which represents nearly 20 million workers in 150 countries.

Google’s New Union Is Already Addressing Political Issues

Google’s New Union Is Already Addressing Political Issues

“This model opens up a lot of possibilities, and it creates a dynamic where workers can leverage their power through an organization,” says Wes McEnany, the East Coast lead for CWA’s Campaign to Organize Digital Employees.

A Newfound Source of Cellular Order in the Chemistry of Life

A Newfound Source of Cellular Order in the Chemistry of Life

Recent experiments reveal that some proteins spontaneously gather into transient assemblies called condensates, in response to molecular forces that precisely balance transitions between the formation and dissolution of droplets inside the cell.

This Year I Found Pleasure in the Work of Looking

This Year I Found Pleasure in the Work of Looking

Today, our main access points to the people around us, and to the larger world, happen through screens—in the last 10 months, Zoom became the primary spillway for how we reconstructed IRL traditions digitally: birthdays, game nights, weddings, funerals, work meetings, therapy sessions, happy hours, group workouts, dance parties (and even sex parties ) took place through a fuzzy rectangular screen.

A Prominent AI Ethics Researcher Says Google Fired Her

A Prominent AI Ethics Researcher Says Google Fired Her

The paper discussed ethical issues raised by recent advances in AI technology that works with language , which Google has said is important to the future of its business .

With $200 Million, Uber and Lyft Write Their Own Labor Law

With $200 Million, Uber and Lyft Write Their Own Labor Law

Fifty-eight percent of the state’s voters approved Proposition 22, which repudiated a recent state labor law that would have required the companies to hire their drivers and delivery people as employees—and pay them traditional benefits, including health care, sick pay, and workers’ compensation.

How to Build a Spacecraft to Save the World

How to Build a Spacecraft to Save the World

There are more than a thousand asteroids with diameters larger than Didymos and Dimorphos combined, and if any of those were to strike Earth, it could lead to mass extinction and the collapse of civilization.“Everyone knows it’s possible to hit an asteroid,” says Justin Atchison, a DART mission designer at the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory.

Antarctic Glaciers Are Growing Unstable Above and Below Water

Antarctic Glaciers Are Growing Unstable Above and Below Water

Researchers operating special ship-mounted sonar gear found a series of 25-mile-wide channels in the seafloor that bring warm water to the base of the Thwaites and Pine Island Glaciers.Together, they revealed massive seafloor channels moving warm water to the base of the glacier.

Why Do Solar Farms Kill Birds? Call in the AI Bird Watcher

Why Do Solar Farms Kill Birds? Call in the AI Bird Watcher

So in 2013, a group of utilities, academics, and environmental organizations came together to form the Avian Solar Working Group to develop strategies to mitigate avian deaths at solar facilities around the US.“There was very little research about the impacts of solar on birds,” says Misti Sporer, the lead environmental scientist at Duke Energy, an electric utility in North Carolina, and member of the working group.

Massachusetts Launches Uber and Lyft's Latest Legal Headache

Massachusetts Launches Uber and Lyft's Latest Legal Headache

On Tuesday, Massachusetts became the second state this year to sue ride-hail companies Uber and Lyft for treating their drivers as independent contractors rather than employees.

Pokemon Go and Sleep No More Creators Are Teaming Up on AR

Pokemon Go and Sleep No More Creators Are Teaming Up on AR

The kind that Punchdrunk, the theater company behind immersive shows like Sleep No More, knows better than anyone.Now Punchdrunk and Niantic, the developer of Pokémon Go and Harry Potter: Wizards Unite , are announcing a collaboration that will span multiple projects.

Airbnb Quietly Fired Hundreds of Contract Workers. I'm One of Them

Airbnb Quietly Fired Hundreds of Contract Workers. I'm One of Them

My office life resembled that of any full-time employee: I snacked on charcuterie boards and fresh ahi poke bowls, rejiggered my calendar to accommodate conflicting meetings, and cheered for employees on their work anniversaries (a peculiar Silicon Valley ritual that celebrates equity accruing).Unlike full-time employees, contract workers aren’t entitled to Airbnb’s premium health care, generous 401(k), unlimited paid vacation time, transportation coverage, and stock options.

Baidu Breaks Off an AI Alliance Amid Strained US-China Ties

Baidu Breaks Off an AI Alliance Amid Strained US-China Ties

Chinese search giant Baidu has left The Partnership on AI (PAI), a US-led effort to foster collaboration on the ethical challenges raised by artificial intelligence .Baidu is said to have cited the cost of membership and recent financial pressures for the move.

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.

AI-Powered Biotech Can Help Deploy a Vaccine In Record Time

AI-Powered Biotech Can Help Deploy a Vaccine In Record Time

The magnitude of the Covid-19 pandemic will largely depend on how quickly safe and effective vaccines and treatments can be developed and tested.As these methods take off in the coming years, we will be able to test all trillions of possible solutions to each health problem very quickly.

This Company Hires Gig Workers—as Employees

This Company Hires Gig Workers—as Employees

Roston candidly compares his business to gig economy apps, offering algorithmic job matching and work-when-you-want flexibility.Three of the four companies selected by the city—Lime , Uber, and Bird-owned Scoot—told WIRED they still use staffing agencies to hire W-2 employees.

Now the Courts Will Decide Whether Uber Drivers Are Employees

Now the Courts Will Decide Whether Uber Drivers Are Employees

Vermont’s Department of Labor wrote in a 2017 bulletin that the “usual course of [Uber]’s business is the provision of a technology platform to its drivers, in exchange for a service fee.” But one federal judge in California called the distinction between technology and transportation company “fatally flawed.” (Uber settled that lawsuit by workers in March 2019, for $20 million.).

An Astronomer Explains Black Holes at 5 Levels of Difficulty

An Astronomer Explains Black Holes at 5 Levels of Difficulty

Perhaps you even know about things like event horizons, the boundary outside of which escape becomes possible, and gravitational waves , the ripples that black holes generate in the cosmic fabric when they collide.