Section: World

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Drax power station: it’s not easy being green

Andy Brown

Drax has now decided to move away from its proposals for small gas-fired stations and recognises that these would indeed be incompatible with Britain’s climate change targets. Instead they are putting their faith in wood burning and carbon capture.

Biden boosts the vaccination roll out

Paige Yepko

Paige Yepko documents Joe Biden’s progress with the vaccination roll out in the US; he has upped his target to 150 million people vaccinated within his first 100 days. Will he achieve this and what impact will the harsh winter have on the goal?

Will the electoral integrity bill reduce or increase democratic participation?

Sue Wilson

We’ve been patient, as the numbers of disenfranchised voters have grown. We’ve watched from a distance as major decisions about the future of the UK have been made without our involvement. Decisions that affect us deeply. It’s time to give us the voice we’ve so long been promised, and in time for the next general election. Even if the government might not like what we have to say.

A pandemic in waiting: when will we act to prevent the next one?

Andy Brown

The conclusion should be obvious. We need a heavy rethink about how we treat wildlife and how we obtain our food. Not just because this is the morally right thing to do, but because our current consumption models are putting lives at risk. Sooner or later there will be another pandemic. Sooner is more likely than later. Once again it will spread easily across the planet via mass plane travel.

Let’s have some flippin’ fun with pancakes

Meryl White

Flipping ‘eck – it’s Pancake Day today, so let’s use ingredients such as sugar, fat and eggs before the beginning of Lent and 40 days of fasting leading to Easter. Well, that’s the tradition, which goes back for centuries.

Three Polish memorials

John Cornwell

John Cornwell recalls three Polish war memorials from the city of Bolesławiec in Poland, the site of a former concentration camp. “It was sad reminder of how history, once so furious and meaningful in a place, moves on and what was once so vitally significant is now just a footnote in a peaceful neighbourhood.”

Northern Ireland protocol: neither Armageddon nor nirvana

Jane Thomas

The fact that the Northern Ireland protocol – designed to prevent a hard border on the island of Ireland – is being put to the test so early, is no big surprise. It was always going to result in additional customs checks somewhere, and those checks landed firmly at the Northern Ireland ports, for goods crossing from Britain to Northern Ireland.

Politics in the digital age: is social media damaging democracy?

Oliver Lawrie

What do the likes Facebook and Twitter mean for the future of Western Democracy? Oliver Lawrie takes a critical look at the relationship between healthy democracy and social media as a tool for democratic emancipation, considering why social media does significantly more harm than it does good.

Review of Biden’s first few days

Kerry Pearson

Kerry Pearson reviews Biden’s first couple of weeks in the White House. His focus has been on reversing Trump-era legislation, rolling out the vaccine, restoring multilateralism and increasing welfare benefits for those impacted by the pandemic.

GameStop vs Wall Street: ‘r/freemarketfailure’

James Powell

The American videogame retailer ‘GameStop’ was trending in the news and on social media recently. This was the result of millions of, mostly young, members of online forum ‘Reddit’ uniting to talk up the value of GameStop after realising that hedge funds such as Melvin Capital Management had bet against the US retailer.

The idiocy of vaccine nationalism

Andy Brown

Andy Brown argues that “a government that has delivered the highest death rates globally, and helped to give the world the English variant of covid, is not in a great position to lecture the rest of the world on its superiority”.

The democratic fightback

Marc Limon

Marc Limon provides a more optimistic view of the future of liberal democracy. Its political and civil rights ensure that leaders are held accountable for their actions.

The tragic life and death of Lisa Montgomery

Pauline Allon

Pauline Allon details the life and death of Lisa Montgomery, one of the last people to be executed during Donald Trump’s term in office. Montgomery herself lived with mental illness, and her death was ruled as “vicious, illegal and unnecessary”.

Navalny and Putin: the conflict escalates

Stephen Davis

Stephen Davis examines the conflict between Vladimir Putin and his rivals in Russia, with escalating protests in Moscow. “Navalny’s fate and the world’s response to it lies very much in the balance. If he is sent to prison on Friday, it is likely that more protests will occur at the weekend.”

Exiting Erasmus is an avoidable mistake

Dr Hywel Ceri Jones

Dr Hywel Ceri Jones, who helped found Erasmus, explains why abandoning it was such a mistake in the government’s pursuit of a global Britain. “With its global interests in view, the closest UK involvement in Horizon and Erasmus is an obvious and necessary investment. It makes little economic or policy sense to join one but not the other.”

Monolingualism: the thorn in post-Brexit Britain’s side

Oliver Lawrie

Oliver Lawrie looks at how our lack of knowledge of other languages will impede us in the post-Brexit world. “Fewer than 3,000 students sat A-level German in 2018. That’s about 5 percent of the number of people who would attend one average football match in the UK.”

Global warming: we have no time to lose

Charlie McCarthy

“The human family is standing on the beach watching a tsunami approaching. The big issue is … can we do anything to stop it?” Charlie McCarthy reviews what the evidence is saying on global warming and why we need to listen to the experts and be led by the science.

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