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Global cases of COVID-19 topped 2 million and at least 134,000 people have died worldwide, according to Johns Hopkins University. Yet despite this, the White House has circulated a draft plan that advises areas with low numbers of coronavirus infections to begin pulling back on social distancing measures after May 1st if they meet certain specifications. As NBC News explained, “the plan stopped short of giving specific metrics for how communities would know whether or when they fall into that category.”
Why This Matters: Local and state leaders, as well as the business community, are concerned about what an early return to work will mean for public health and the economy. On a call with the newly-formed White House business council, industry executives expressed that there would need to be guarantees of ramped-up coronavirus testing before people return to work. State health officials also reiterated that there would be no quick end to social distancing–certainly not by May 1st.
One Cool Thing: High school seniors who are missing out on all the events of their senior year have taken to social media to ask former President Barack Obama to deliver a virtual commencement address to the class of 2020.
Growing Inequity: In New Mexico, Native American tribes and pueblos have been disproportionately impacted by the ongoing coronavirus outbreak, according to new data released Tuesday by Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham’s administration. As the Daily Mail reported, the Navajo Nation has reported the highest coronavirus cases per capita outside of New York and New Jersey with tribes more vulnerable to infection because of high rates of heart problems and living closer together.
California’s Successful Response: The nation’s most populous state has managed to stay ahead of the curve on mitigating the spread of COVID-19. Part of that success has come from an early and decisive response by Governor Gavin Newsom as well as local leaders who took no chances in issuing early shelter in place orders.
The Peak: Yesterday, President Trump declared that the United States has “passed the peak” of the coronavirus outbreak. It’s still uncertain if experts agree with the assertion. Models predict a range of outcomes and the best we can do is to work to avoid the worst scenarios.
E&E News led with a story yesterday about the numerous environmental groups who received government support under the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) even as they were suing the government over policies they believed the Trump administration got wrong.
Why This Matters: The E&E story seems to imply that environmental groups should not be suing the Trump administration — they sought comments from numerous groups as to they were taking the money while continuing to file lawsuits.
In May when former Vice President–and presumptive Democratic presidential nominee–Joe Biden announced his climate task force it was a means to unite the flanks of his party. According to an exclusive story from the New York Times yesterday, that task force has come out with its first set of goals for Biden’s consideration As Lisa […]
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