Tornadoes, Japan, Boston Bruins: Your Tuesday Briefing


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Good morning,

We’re covering the Trump administration’s new push to sow doubt about the risks of global warming, the aftermath of the European Parliament elections and a mass stabbing in Japan.

After two years spent unraveling the environmental policies of his predecessors, President Trump and his appointees are preparing a new assault.

Since the release of the National Climate Assessment in November, the administration has pushed to alter the results of some science reports, several officials said. Government scientists projected in the most recent climate assessment that the atmosphere could warm as much as eight degrees Fahrenheit by the end of the century if fossil fuel emissions continue unchecked, leading to higher sea levels, more devastating storms and droughts, and severe health consequences. But officials said that such worst-case projections won’t automatically be included in some government reports, including the next National Climate Assessment, which is to be released in 2021 or 2022.

Response: James Hewitt, a spokesman for the Environmental Protection Agency, said of the proposed changes: “The previous use of inaccurate modeling that focuses on worst-case emissions scenarios, that does not reflect real-world conditions, needs to be thoroughly re-examined and tested if such information is going to serve as the scientific foundation of nationwide decision-making now and in the future.”

Another angle: The Trump administration wants to create a new climate review panel, led by a Princeton physicist who has attacked the science of man-made climate change and defended the virtues of carbon dioxide.

After four days of voting, populist and nationalist parties that oppose what they see as an overreaching bureaucracy in Brussels increased their share of seats in the European Parliament. But the populists were denied the sort of Continentwide victory that they had predicted — and that their critics had feared.

While nationalist parties in Hungary, Italy and Poland made gains, some 75 percent of voters backed parties that support Europe.

Why it matters: The 751-seat Parliament is the only directly elected institution within the 28-nation European Union, so the election was seen by many as a referendum on the institution itself. Here are five takeaways from the voting, which ended Sunday.

Related: The party of France’s far-right leader, Marine Le Pen, who lost decisively to President Emmanuel Macron two years ago, defeated his party in the voting.

With a historically large field of Democratic presidential candidates apparently set, interviews with party leaders and strategists revealed a far more fluid race than Joe Biden’s double-digit polling advantage would indicate.

Democrats say that’s in part because much of the party’s energy is coming from younger, female and progressive activists, making it unlikely that the 76-year-old former vice president will march to the nomination. The first debates are next month.

Quotable: “At this point no one thought that a peanut farmer from Georgia was going to be president, or that a governor from Arkansas was going to win or that a guy named Barack Obama was going to be able to capture the White House,” said one of the candidates, Senator Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota.

Related: The path to the White House runs through places like Lordstown, Ohio, where layoffs at a General Motors plant have left former workers feeling politically lost.

As of March, the company worked with roughly 121,000 temporary workers and contractors around the world, compared with 102,000 full-time employees, according to an internal document obtained by The Times.

Although they often work side by side with full-timers, Google’s temps are usually employed by outside agencies and make less money, have different benefits and have no paid vacation time in the U.S., according to more than a dozen current and former workers.

Go deeper: Google has said it would improve conditions for its temps and contractors. While the reliance on temporary help has generated more controversy inside Google, the practice is common in Silicon Valley.

In a place where farming is a synonym for poverty, a growing number of young, college-educated Africans are trying to fight the stigma. Vozbeth Kofi Azumah, above right, runs a snail hatchery in Ghana.

They’re applying scientific approaches and data-crunching apps not just to increase yields, but also to show that agriculture can be profitable.

Mass stabbing in Japan: A man stabbed at least 19 people, including 17 schoolchildren at a bus stop, before fatally stabbing himself today, the police said. At least one of the children died in the attack outside Tokyo.

Ouster in Austria: Chancellor Sebastian Kurz and his caretaker government lost a no-confidence vote in Parliament on Monday after a video raised questions about Russian influence.

Snapshot: Above, the family of Master Sgt. Tulsa Tuliau, who was killed in Iraq in 2005, visited his grave in Arlington National Cemetery on Monday. The Times has published excerpts from a century’s worth of Memorial Day coverage from our archives.

Stanley Cup finals: The Boston Bruins beat the St. Louis Blues, 4-2, in Game 1. Game 2 is Wednesday.

French Open results: Serena Williams lost the first set of her first-round match but came back to win. Here are today’s matchups for the women and the men.

Late-night comedy: Most shows are in reruns, so our column is taking the week off.

What we’re watching: This CBS News clip shared by the historian Michael Beschloss, in which former President Dwight Eisenhower visits a cemetery in France with Walter Cronkite 20 years after D-Day.

Listen: A bare-bones blues shuffle is all Mavis Staples needs to carry her lifelong message — “Things gotta change around here” — in her track “Change,” writes our critic.

Go: Jez Butterworth’s Tony-nominated family drama “The Ferryman” retains its fierce grip with a new cast led by Brian d’Arcy James. It’s playing at the Bernard B. Jacobs Theater in Manhattan.

Smarter Living: It’s easy for healthy lifestyles to fall by the wayside when you’re traveling. But small amounts of exercise — like a 10-minute high intensity routine in your hotel room or active sightseeing activities such as walking or biking tours — can help maintain your fitness and keep your energy levels high. Bringing your own healthy snacks, and being mindful of indulgent detours, will keep your diet balanced.

And we talked to travel health experts to learn how to stock your first-aid kit.

There’s more than meets the eye in new bank notes circulating in Europe starting today.

The 100- and 200-euro bills are the last of the “Europa” designs to go into use since 2013. The 5, 10, 20 and 50 preceded them.

The newest bills have extra security features, only a few of which the European Central Bank has disclosed.

For one, a hologram shows a portrait of Europa as well as small € symbols that move around and become clearer under direct light. (In Greek mythology, Europa was a nymph seduced by Zeus posing as a white bull. Her image was taken from a vase in the Louvre.)

There may be other features — like infrared watermarks — readable only by machines.

The 200-euro note is now the largest denomination.

The central bank stopped printing the 500-euro bill in 2016, after research linked its use to money laundering, tax evasion and terrorism financing. Sometimes called the “Bin Laden,” it was removed from circulation last month.

That’s it for this briefing. See you next time.

— Chris

Thank you
To Mark Josephson, Eleanor Stanford and Kenneth R. Rosen for the break from the news. Victoria Shannon wrote today’s Back Story. You can reach the team at

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Source : Nytimes