President Trump Signs Executive Order To Advance Dakota Pipeline Construction

We’ll see you at Standing Rock, Donald

Image via Getty

President Donald Trump, who’s been in office for a total of four days, has already signed a series of executive orders that will have unprecedented consequences. On Monday, he reinstated the “global gag rule,” which prevents health care groups from receiving funding if they so much as mention anything related to abortion. While it may seem like a measure to singularly curb abortions on its surface, reinstating the global gag rule will in fact make it much harder for advocacy groups to provide basic maternal health care and prevent the spread of HIV and Zika.

A day later, on Tuesday, Trump signed another executive order that could have equally vast consequences. By enacting legislation to advance the construction of the Keystone XL and Dakota Access oil pipelines, Trump has effectively unraveled the months of diligent protests staged by Sioux Reservation Americans with one scrawl of his pen. The Obama administration had previously blocked pipeline construction as a result of the demonstrations (which police met with brutal force), citing environmental concerns. Unsurprisingly, Trump’s administration has dismissed all environmental and humanitarian concerns, claiming pushing construction forward will result in thousands of new jobs. However, of those promised jobs, nearly all will be temporary. Trump also stated the pipelines would be manufactured in America, though he provided no details as to how that could actually happen.

Shortly after Trump signed the order—while surrounded by white men, no less—Bernie Sanders announced he’d do everything in his power to block the move, saying in a statement,

“Today, President Trump ignored the voices of millions and put the short-term profits of the fossil fuel industry ahead of the future of our planet. At a time when the scientific community is virtually unanimous in telling us that climate change is real, it is caused by human activity and it is already causing devastating problems, we cannot afford to build new oil pipelines that lock us into burning fossil fuels for years to come. I will do everything I can to stop these pipelines and protect our planet for future generations.”

In a sliver of hope, both orders to continue construction of the pipelines are open to renegotiation. That being said,it is up to us to actively resist destructive policies.

via Douglas Muth / Flickr

Sin City is doing something good for its less fortunate citizens as well as those who've broken the law this month. The city of Las Vegas, Nevada will drop any parking ticket fines for those who make a donation to a local food bank.

A parking ticket can cost up to $100 in Las Vegas but the whole thing can be forgiven by bringing in non-perishable food items of equal or greater value to the Parking Services Offices at 500 S. Main Street through December 16.

The program is designed to help the less fortunate during the holidays.

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However, all of that has changed since the election of Donald Trump in 2016. Voters in Maine, particularly those who lean left, have run out of patience with Collins and her seeming refusal to stand up to Trump. That frustration peaked with the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court.

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via / Flickr and Dimitri Rodriguez / Flickr

Bernie Sanders' presidential campaign looks to be getting a huge big shot in the arm after it's faced some difficulties over the past few weeks.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a leading voice in the Democratic parties progressive, Democratic Socialist wing, is expected to endorse Sanders' campaign at the "Bernie's Back" rally in Queens, New York this Saturday.

Fellow member of "the Squad," Ilhan Omar, endorsed him on Wednesday.

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Photo by HAL9001 on Unsplash

The U.K. is trying to reach its goal of net-zero emissions by 2050, but aviation may become the biggest source of greenhouse gas emissions in the U.K. by that same year. A new study commissioned by the Committee on Climate Change (CCC) and conducted at the Imperial College London says that in order for the U.K. to reach its target, aviation can only see a 25% increase, and they've got a very specific recommendation on how to fix it: Curb frequent flyer programs.

Currently, air travel accounts for 2% of global greenhouse gas emissions, however that number is projected to increase for several reasons. There's a growing demand for air travel, yet it's harder to decarbonize aviation. Electric cars are becoming more common. Electric planes, not so much. If things keep on going the way they are, flights in the U.K. should increase by 50%.

Nearly every airline in the world has a frequent flyer program. The programs offer perks, including free flights, if customers get a certain amount of points. According to the study, 70% of all flights from the U.K. are taken by 15% of the population, with many people taking additional (and arguably unnecessary) flights to "maintain their privileged traveler status."

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