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Amid widespread flooding and power outages, people are leaving Florida in droves as Ian pummels the state. But some brave individuals are intentionally traveling into the ferocious storm to gather data for research and forecasting. Watch these professional hurricane hunters – famous for enduring the world’s most dangerous weather – fly a plane directly in the turbulent eye of the storm.
Here’s what else you need to know to Get Up to Speed and On with Your Day.
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1. Hurricane Ian
President Joe Biden is set to gather with world leaders in Brussels for emergency summits to respond to the war in Ukraine. Announcements on new sanctions, NATO force posture and military assistance are all expected at the sessions today, according to US and European officials. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has repeatedly asked for a no-fly zone over Ukraine, but US and NATO officials have said that option is not on the table because it would risk provoking Russian President Vladimir Putin and spark a wider war with Russia. Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov told CNN that Putin has still not achieved his goal in Ukraine, which is to eliminate the country’s military potential. Separately, Russia partially reopened its stock market today after a monthlong closure and investors took part in a highly restricted trading session. The White House, however, called the market reopening a “charade.”
The US Embassy in Moscow is warning Americans to leave Russia immediately in the wake of President Vladimir Putin’s order for partial mobilization of Russian men to fight in his war in Ukraine. The security alert said the embassy “has severe limitations on its ability to assist US citizens, and conditions, including transportation options, may suddenly become even more limited.” Separately, US officials say Russia is the leading suspect in the Nord Stream pipeline leaks investigation. A fourth leak was found today in the pipelines connecting Russia to Germany and there was a “very strong indication” these were acts of sabotage, a German official said.
Updated Covid-19 boosters could be expanded to younger age groups as soon as early October, a source close to the FDA’s planning discussions tells CNN. Moderna and Pfizer both sought FDA emergency use authorization for their updated Covid-19 boosters for younger people in recent days. Moderna is seeking authorization for children as young as 6 years and Pfizer for children as young as 5. Like the boosters that became available for older people earlier this month, these shots target the original coronavirus strain as well as the Omicron BA.4/BA.5 subvariants. Pfizer’s updated booster is currently authorized for use in people 12 and older and Moderna’s is authorized for adults age 18 and older.
4. Kamala Harris
With less than three weeks to go until the federal student loan repayment pause expires, millions of borrowers are waiting to hear whether President Joe Biden will extend the current payment moratorium or possibly forgive any of their debts. Borrower balances have effectively been frozen since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, with no payments required on most federal student loans since March 2020. Democratic lawmakers and advocates have been calling on Biden to broadly cancel up to $50,000 in student loan debt per borrower, but the President has said he would not consider that number. Along with potentially extending the pause, the White House has suggested Biden is considering canceling $10,000 per borrower, excluding those who earn more than $125,000 a year. White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said Biden will have something to announce “before August 31.”
Vice President Kamala Harris visited the Demilitarized Zone that divides North and South Korea today – one day after Pyongyang fired two ballistic missiles into the waters off its east coast. The DMZ has long been a destination for US presidents and vice presidents on official visits to South Korea, where they have been photographed peering through binoculars into North Korean-controlled territory. As anticipated, Harris went to an observation post where she viewed North Korea with binoculars – and US officials said North Korean guards likely stared back at her. The Vice President’s visit comes as tensions remain extremely high in the Korean Peninsula. North Korea has launched 18 ballistic missiles this year, a record number since 2012 after Kim Jong Un took over as leader.
5. Food labels
The FDA is proposing changes to the nutrition standards that foods must meet before they can carry the “healthy” label on their packages. Foods that make the claim would need to have limits on individual nutrients like fat, saturated fat, cholesterol and sodium, and they must contain minimum amounts of vitamins A and C, calcium, iron, protein and dietary fiber. But since the “healthy” claim was first defined in 1994, the FDA said an update was needed to reflect changes in nutrition and dietary science. For example, certain cereals that have high amounts of added sugars still meet the definition of “healthy,” but salmon – which is high in beneficial polyunsaturated fat – does not. The FDA said the goal of the proposal is to help consumers improve their dietary patterns.
A rapping granny is running for office
I can almost hear the sound of my luggage rolling through the airport. Check out this photo gallery to see some of the most beautiful Italian villages.
This is an ‘Evocado’
At first glance, it looks a lot like a real avocado. But this eco-friendly alternative is actually made of beans and apples.
Half of all teens say they use the internet ‘almost constantly’
Social media platforms are rapidly unveiling new features to take on their competitors, causing users to become even more attached. Here’s a friendly reminder for the weekend: less scrolling, more living.
Walgreens is paying signing bonuses up to $75,000 to pharmacists
America’s job market is HOT. Companies across many different industries are dangling lucrative signing bonuses to attract workers.
The streaming wars are over
Streaming platforms spent billions of dollars to launch services to take on Netflix. Now, that war to win over subscribers has ended.
House to vote on Democrats’ sweeping health care and climate bill
The House of Representatives is on track to vote today to pass Democrats’ $750 billion health care, energy and climate bill, in a significant victory for President Joe Biden and his party. Once the Democratic-controlled House approves the bill, it would next go to Biden to be signed into law. The bill – named the Inflation Reduction Act – would represent the largest climate investment in US history and make major changes to health policy.
Which product remains difficult to find in many US stores due to a nationwide shortage?
A. “Dirty Dancing”
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That’s how many people were injured in a roller coaster crash Thursday at a Legoland theme park in southern Germany. Investigators are working to determine the cause of the crash, which occurred in the Bavarian town of Günzburg. One person suffered severe but not life-threatening injuries, according to a police spokesman. Fifteen others were taken to a hospital with light injuries after the incident.
“We want to show them that we don’t care about their standards, their definition of beauty or what they think that we should look like. It is to show that we are angry.”
– FBI Director Christopher Wray, condemning attacks on law enforcement after an armed man tried to enter the FBI’s Cincinnati office on Thursday. The man was killed after a standoff, authorities say. While the suspect’s motive has not been announced, the FBI is investigating his social media presence and whether he had ties to right-wing extremism. An account bearing the name of the standoff suspect made a post on the social media platform founded by Donald Trump calling for violence against the FBI..
Realistic facial illusions
Enjoy this funny video of three cheetahs taking a cameraman’s belongings. (Click here to view)