The dark side of solar power

Atalay Atasu, Serasu Duran, and Luk N. Van Wassenhove write: It’s sunny times for solar power. In the U.S., home installations of solar panels have fully rebounded from the Covid slump, with analysts predicting more than 19 gigawatts of total capacity installed, compared to 13 gigawatts at the close of 2019. Over the next 10… Read More »

The man who controls the Senate

Evan Osnos writes: On a frosty night in February, Joe Manchin III, the senior senator from West Virginia, invited a few colleagues over for dinner aboard the houseboat he docks on the Potomac. In the past, opponents have sought to highlight the vessel for political effect; a 2018 advertisement by the National Republican Senatorial Committee… Read More »

The authoritarian instincts of police unions

Adam Serwer writes: In May 2020, Darnella Frazier, a 17-year-old with a smartphone camera, documented the killing of George Floyd by a Minneapolis police officer. Most Americans who watched the video of Floyd begging for his life, as Officer Derek Chauvin kneeled on his neck, saw a human being. Robert Kroll did not. The head… Read More »

Everyone wants to sell the last barrel of oil

Bill McKibben writes: A final victory last week over the Keystone XL pipeline is a reminder that fighting particular fossil-fuel projects is a necessary strategy if the climate is to be saved. The defeat of Keystone XL doesn’t mean that Canada’s vast tar-sands project, which is generally regarded as the largest industrial project in the… Read More »

A mysterious crater’s age may add clues to the dinosaur extinction

The New York Times reports: Some 65 million years ago, a rock from outer space slammed into Earth, wreaking havoc on life in its wake and leaving a large crater on our planet’s surface. No, it’s not the one you’re thinking of. Boltysh crater, a 15-mile-wide formation in central Ukraine, may not be as famous… Read More »

The day the dinosaurs died

Douglas Preston writes: If, on a certain evening about sixty-­six million years ago, you had stood somewhere in North America and looked up at the sky, you would have soon made out what appeared to be a star. If you watched for an hour or two, the star would have seemed to grow in brightness,… Read More »

The world relies on one chip maker in Taiwan, leaving everyone vulnerable

The Wall Street Journal reports: Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co.’s chips are everywhere, though most consumers don’t know it. The company makes almost all of the world’s most sophisticated chips, and many of the simpler ones, too. They’re in billions of products with built-in electronics, including iPhones, personal computers and cars—all without any obvious sign they… Read More »

Iran’s next president, Ebrahim Raisi, isn’t who you think he is

Sajjad Safaei writes: In late May, the 12-member Guardian Council—Iran’s election watchdog, many of whose members are associated with Raisi—barred prominent moderate and pro-reform figures from running in the race. Some still clung to the hope that Khamenei would eventually intervene, just as he had done in 2005, to reinstate some of the disqualified candidates.… Read More »