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Good evening. Here’s the latest.
1. The Biden administration announced that it would suspend oil drilling leases in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge that were issued by the Trump administration.
The decision could ultimately end any plans to drill in one of the largest tracts of untouched wilderness in the U.S. — delicate tundra in Alaska that is home to migrating waterfowl, caribou and polar bears. The move comes as the Biden administration weathers criticism for recent decisions to either support or fail to block major oil and gas drilling projects. Above, a young male polar bear off the Alaskan arctic coast.
Separately, a drought crisis affecting more than half of the American West is threatening to turn into a war over water supplies. Federal officials have told Oregon farmers that they may not get water for the first time from the century-old Klamath Project, and local leaders fear that generations of tensions could escalate.
2. President Biden met with survivors of the 1921 Tulsa massacre, as he strives to make racial equity and justice central themes of his presidency.
Biden promised massacre survivors that their story “would be known in full view.” It was the first time a president had visited the area to address what happened 100 years ago in Greenwood, the site of one of the worst outbreaks of racist violence in American history. Above, President Joe Biden tours the Greenwood Cultural Center in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
The president announced more federal spending to small and minority-owned businesses; fair housing enhancements; and programs that are intended to repair the damage to neighborhoods divided by transportation projects.
3. Seven European countries have begun using a digital Covid certificate for travel.
The document, known as a digital green certificate, records whether people have been fully vaccinated, recovered from the coronavirus or tested negative within 72 hours. It is scheduled to be in use across all 27 E.U. countries as of July 1.
The only government-issued vaccine passport in the U.S. is New York’s Excelsior Pass. It has been downloaded over a million times, but a vast majority of businesses are not requiring any proof of vaccination to enter.
At the urging of business groups, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has made clear how companies can issue vaccine mandates to workers.
4. As Texas becomes younger, less white and less Republican, its lawmakers are pushing the state further to the far right.
Bills that had died in previous sessions for being too extreme were now viewed as middle-of-the-road. In the span of a few days, lawmakers passed a near-ban on abortion and a bill allowing the carrying of handguns without permits.
Democrats successfully stalled a bill that would have barred transgender students from playing on sports teams based on their gender identity. A dramatic walkout killed a bill that would impose some of the strictest limits in the nation on voting access, but Republicans vowed to pass it in a special session. Above, State Rep. Nicole Collier speaks at a news conference on Sunday.
Before the tournament, Osaka said she would not do any press conferences, citing her mental health. After she skipped her first one, tournament officials fined her $15,000 and made it clear she risked being defaulted. In her withdrawal announcement, Osaka said she had experienced long bouts of depression since the 2018 U.S. Open.
Current and former tennis executives said the decision to take a hard line had been influenced by the sport’s battle to maintain media coverage in an era of shrinking news budgets and intense competition from other forms of entertainment.
Elsewhere in sports, CeCe Telfer, the first openly transgender woman to win an N.C.A.A. title, is aiming to qualify for the U.S. Olympic trials in the 400-meter hurdles. Here is a roundup of athletes to watch at the Tokyo Olympics next month.
7. Pope Francis has broadened the Roman Catholic Church’s law to cover the sexual abuse of adults.
The new rules in the Vatican’s penal code explicitly criminalize sexual exploitation of adults by priests who abuse their authority and also apply to lay people with power in the church.
The changes reflect a new appreciation in the church that power dynamics can be a critical factor in abuse and acknowledge that adults, and not only children, can be victimized by priests and laypeople.
9. In South Korea, you don’t have to explain TikTok to your grandma.
A “greynaissance” is reshaping South Korea’s rapidly aging culture, as those age 50 and older are becoming important consumers and makers in the country’s economy, including the fashion and beauty industries. Above, the Show Project, a modeling school and agency in Seoul.
With older people underrepresented in Korean media, social platforms have become a driving force of the movement. “In Korea, there’s this idea that once you hit a certain age, you’re no longer a woman, so it’s appealing to see these grandmas not give in to that narrative,” said Esther Oh, 32, who lives in Virginia and watches videos of self-described “Korean grandmothers.”
10. And finally, how did the alligator cross the road?
For decades, engineers and biologists have recognized the need for animals to safely cross the road and get to the other side. The U.S. had just a few such wildlife crossings in the 1970s and ’80s. “Now everyone who works on these issues seems to get it,” says a director at the National Wildlife Federation.
As a result, there are over 1,000 across the country now, like the underpass in Florida, above. It’s not just for the benefit of wildlife: Collisions between vehicles and large animals cause more than 26,000 human injuries and about 200 deaths every year. Trail cameras have captured a variety of animals using them, often without hesitation. Take a look at them in action.
Have a wild evening.
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