An investigation in Canada is raising flags about lead levels in drinking water there.
More than 100 journalists conducted the yearlong investigation into this issue. Turns out, more than a third of the water tests showed lead levels above Canada's safety guidelines. Several cities reportedly had higher lead levels than in Flint, MI. And it's apparently been found in some schools and day care centers – which has people worried it could affect children's health.
Well, that's where things get tricky. Canada has 7% of the world's renewable freshwater supply...but doesn't have a nationwide water safety standard. It's mostly up to provinces there to set their own rules. Officials reportedly say that they're working on addressing this issue by testing homes for lead and working to replace old lead pipes ASAP.
Canada is one of the few developed countries that doesn't have a national water safety standard. Cracks in the country's infrastructure are starting to show – and hundreds of thousands of people could be in danger.
The EPA has proposed easing rules that could cause water contamination.
For years, regulators have had a hard time figuring out where coal plants should store residue. Coal plants have landed on shoving it into pits, which can lead to residue seeping into groundwater. Problem, because it can contain toxic chemicals like arsenic, lead, and mercury. So in 2015, the Obama admin set up rules requiring coal plants to monitor and address pollution.
Yesterday, the Trump admin proposed giving plants eight more years to comply with storage restrictions. The admin says this will alleviate "burdens" for the industry, but critics say it could contaminate drinking water for millions of people. And environmental groups are reportedly threatening to sue. The proposal comes the same day that the US notified the UN that it's officially withdrawing from the Paris climate deal.
Add this to the list of Obama-era environmental rules the Trump admin has rolled back. This latest move highlights the admin's goal to help the coal industry as renewable energy sources have been gaining steam.
His tax returns. Yesterday, a federal appeals court ruled that New York prosecutors can have access to President Trump's tax returns. Reminder: This is about alleged hush-money payments Trump made to two women. His team has argued that presidents are immune from criminal investigations or being prosecuted. And said they'll appeal this ruling to the Supreme Court.
This lawsuit. Yesterday, journalist E Jean Carroll sued President Trump for defamation. Over the summer, she claimed that Trump raped her at a department store in the '90s. Trump has said that he never met her and that she was using the situation to try to sell her book. Now, Carroll is saying that his comments took a hit on her reputation and career. The White House is calling her and her story a "fraud."
Four-day workweeks. In August, Microsoft Japan tested a program where it closed its offices on Fridays and gave employees three-day weekends. Some meetings were also cut down to 30 minutes. The result: work productivity jumped by 40%. Work, meet life balance.
The housing crisis. Apple is committing $2.5 billion to help fix the crisis in California. The money will go toward things like helping build affordable housing and helping to pay some people's mortgages. Reminder: Silicon Valley's been accused of taking the housing and homelessness crisis there from bad to worse. Now, Apple is joining other major tech companies in the (Thanks)giving spirit.
This black cat.
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Feb 11 | Former President Trump's impeachment trial continues.
Sept 14 | The West Coast is blaring the alarm on climate change.
February 25 | Harvey Weinstein was found guilty of rape.