Ancient Mayan site found in Guatemala


Everyone knows life existed a long time ago, but little did anyone know millions of people lived under a jungle. In what is now Central America, an ancient megalopolis has been uncovered.

With man-made products such as elevated highways and palaces in a complex world, Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) technology provides images of the hidden world by digitally editing the forest canopy to discover ancient ruins never before seen with the human eye.

Existing more than 1,200 years ago, research has shown that sophisticated architecture, including urban centers and irrigation systems, is comparable to the ancient civilizations of Greece and China. The highlight of the discovery is that until now researchers have believed that such civilization is impossible in the tropics.

The structures such as forts and defensive walls prove that the society was prepared for war and way more populated than previously thought. Extensive streets and roads were used for high traffic and trade in this densely populated area. With a suspected five million people living in the Mayan civilization, it is now proven that number is between 10 to 15 million.

This is the start to a whole new beginning to not only discover what life was like all those years ago but also may play a role in Guatemala’s environmental situation. Degradation has caused a loss of 10 percent of forests each year from burning the land in order to make room for human colonization. Researchers hope this will bring a revelation to those causing this loss to preserve the history that once existed under the Guatemala jungles.

The PACUNAM Foundation, a Guatemalan nonprofit organization that focuses on heritage preservation and ancient civilization, is a partner in this project. With more data to be analyzed, the project will answer questions as to how the Mayan civilization created and lived in these lowlands.

Pipeline leaks oil in South Dakota


Last year, thousands of people participated in the protest of the Dakota Access Pipeline, in North Dakota. Protesters feared that the pipe would break, and leak oil into tribal territory. This Thursday, 210,000 gallons of oil leaked into South Dakota from the Keystone Pipeline.

This leak comes days before a decision to finalize permits needed to begin construction on Keystone XL, a sister pipeline to the Keystone Pipeline.

Even though, livestock and drinking water sources were not threatened, Kim McIntosh, an environmental scientist with the South Dakota Department of Environment and Natural Resources told The New York Times “…this is not a little spill from any perspective.”

According to TransCanada, The Keystone Pipeline system stretches from Alberta, Canada, to Manitoba, Canada. The pipeline then travels south into Texas, in hope to make transporting crude oil from Canada easier. Smaller sections of the pipeline would cut into Oklahoma and Illinois.

The proposed Keystone XL Pipeline, would travel from Alberta to Nebraska, and cut through parts of Montana, South Dakota, Oklahoma and Illinois.

The leak is near Lake Traverse Reservation, but is not on Sioux property, said Dave Flute, tribal chairman for Sisseton Wahpeton Sioux Tribe.

In a statement, Flute said: “We are monitoring the situation as this leak is adjacent to our reservation…We do not know the impact this has on our environment at this time but we are aware of the leak.”

According to CNN, this is the largest Keystone oil spill to date in South Dakota, and the third this year.

Major articles from NPR, The Washington Post, CNN, and The New York Times circulated social media, after people took to Twitter to voice their thoughts on the leak. Many cited the Dakota Access Pipeline protest and urged officials to think before approving the Keystone XL Pipeline.

Trump reverses elephant trophy ban


The Trump administration reversed an Obama era ban on importing elephant trophies acquired from hunting in Zambia and Zimbabwe this Wednesday.

A provision of the Endangered Species Act allows the hunting of these elephants so long as there is proof that it is beneficial to the species. A spokesperson from the Fish and Wildlife Service cited this act in defense of such hunting, saying it helps by “… providing incentives to local communities to conserve the species and by putting much needed revenue back into conservation.”

Critics of the decision were not swayed: Animal-protection groups such as the Humane Society and the Elephant Project called the decision “venal and nefarious” and “reprehensible” respectively. Another ethical concern they raised was the hoarding of elephant hunting rights by rich Americans who want only the ivory tusks, in a region where many poor and hungry Africans are strictly prohibited from killing them and using the entire animal for food and profit.

Still another criticism surrounded President Trump’s sons Donald Jr. and Eric, who are known to be fond of hunting from photos posted on social media. No formal accusations of bias have arisen, but the thought is there.

USA Today was quite adept at showing the story’s importance as well as it’s opposing sides. What to many might look like a straightforward ethical dilemma. USA Today presented as an issue with two sides with equally compelling evidence. Their references to previous related events, such as that of Cecil the line, also helped tremendously in showing that animal rights is an ongoing and relevant issue.

Earthquake kills hundreds in Middle East


The Iranian city of Sarpol-e Zahab was strongly hit by an earthquake on Sunday near the Iraqi border.

The New York Times correspondent Thomas Erdbrink told Americans about the aftermath, writing that Iranians spent the night digging in a frantic search for survivors after the powerful earthquake struck near the Iraqi border on Sunday evening. oreM than 300 people were killed and thousands of others injured, officials said.

The epicenter of the quake had a preliminary magnitude of 7.3, according to the United States Geological Survey. Many buildings, farms and homes were destroyed. People are sleeping in the streets in fear of aftershocks.

According to the state news agency IRNA, at least 341 people were killed and nearly 6,000 people in Iran were injured.  According to Dr. Saif-al-Badir, from Iraq’s Ministry of Health, at least eight people were killed and 535 were hurt on the Iraqi side of the border.

As needed when reporting catastrophic events of great magnitude, news organizations use reliable sources as the United States Geological Survey, the Iran News Agency, Iraq’s Ministry of Health, and the Iranian Students News Agency.

Disaster toll in California rises


A total of 31 people have died amid the devastating wildfires wreaking havoc across California. While this story hasn’t quite been dominating the news cycle, a candid, somber moment did occur on Fox News’ morning broadcast America’s Newsroom.

A California woman recounted to reporters the horrifying final phone call she had with her mother. The woman held a “missing” poster of her mother up to the camera as she fought back tears and told reporters how her mother called her crying, trapped in her house and surrounded by flames.

Her mother told her “I’m going to die in here.” The woman hoped bringing attention to her missing mother on television would find her sooner and safely. The package ended and unfortunately host Bill Huemmer concluded that the mother’s remains were found that night.

The tragic milestone of 31 deaths that California hit makes this year’s wildfires some of the deadliest in history. Figures like these are thrown at the viewer frequently with stories like this one, yet can often be overlooked because of the seemingly commonplace nature of the disasters.

America’s Newsroom, however, made this report more than just a story. The wildfires became more than a mere news segment. This interview hit home. It made the tragedy in California real for myself, a viewer on the other coast otherwise entirely unaffiliated with the fires.

The segment was powerful due to the interviewee’s horrific story of her last conversation with her mother. She endured a living nightmare and her tale made me realize how severe this is.

In an age where violence and tragedy dominates the news cycle and numbs the viewer to the reality the worst that the world can offer, America’s Newsroom made an impact with their coverage and focus on the severity of the situation, and the people involved — because they are what matters most.

California wildfires: Death toll rises to 29


California wildfires have killed at least 29 people and burned more than 191,000 acres of land. Firefighters are still trying to combat the raging flames but have not been able to get the fires under control.

In addition to the 29 deaths, hundreds of people have been reported missing in the Northern California area.

Gov. Jerry Brown has declared a state of emergency for California and stated to the press that this is one of the biggest wildfires the state of California has endured. The month of October is typically when all the deadliest wildfires have occurred in California.

The next biggest wildfire that has occurred in California was the Griffith Park Fire in 1933, killing 29 people.

Mandatory evacuation orders have been placed on Napa, Sonoma, Solano counties. Residents from these counties have been advised not to return until further notice.

News sources have been keeping the public up to date with new information daily on the rising death tolls and damages caused by these California wildfires. ABC News released a video today showing an overview of the burned acres in Northern California.

California wildfires continue to rage


Wine country in California has been engulfed in flames since Sunday night, leaving at least 17 people dead, hundreds more taken to the hospital with injuries and more than 2,000 buildings affected by the blaze.

The fires were spread in part by strong 50 m.p.h. winds that were present when the fire started. While they have since dissipated, they will likely resume as the week goes on, and the fire remains uncontained, according to officials. Based on the nature of the fire and the lack of control that firefighters have been able to establish, those numbers are sure to rise.

In analyzing the news coverage of the fires as the story develops, I notice two prominent characteristics that are worth discussing. The first is the personalization of the stories that are being written. The fires are the week’s biggest developing story at the moment, but readers are usually unsatisfied with the simple hard read of the facts. In using a softer lede by recounting a personal tale of tragedy, before getting into the colder facts about the fire, readers are naturally drawn into the story.

The New York Times, for example, started its story by introducing the reader to Matt Lenzi, who “hiked through smoke-choked vineyards and waded the Napa River to reach the home his father lived in for 53 years.”

This is a deeply personal story, which brings personal connection and life to an otherwise cold read about fire statistics that are likely to be updated in half an hour. Readers can connect to his experience and are motivated to keep reading. If they do, they’ll meet Maureen Grinnell, Pamela Taylor, James Harder and many more victims, who are able to offer an emotional perspective that makes reading the story a worthwhile endeavor.

The second element of the stories that I noticed is the use of new technologies to supplement the article and take advantage of the full capabilities of media today. The New York Times included drone footage of the fires, to give online readers a sense of the scale and devastation that the fires have caused.

CNN has included video from multiple sources, to allow readers a complex look at the fire from multiple points of view. Combined, these two techniques compel readers to continue reading and give them a complete experience of the events that are unfolding.

Tropical Storm Nate may hit U.S. Gulf Coast


The United States may still not be off the hook for hurricanes this season.

A tropical cyclone in the northwestern Caribbean Sea has recently been upgraded to a named tropical storm called Nate.  Meteorologists believe the system is likely to become a hurricane in the next three days.  They also predict that it may hit the northern Gulf Coast on Sunday morning.

“Nate is expected to strengthen as it moves over warmer waters on its way to the U.S. coast,” says the National Hurricane Center.  “But at this point, it is too early to specify the timing, location, or magnitude of these impacts.

Nate is currently bringing heavy rainfall to Nicaragua as it is heading towards Cancun. It has triggered flood warnings in these areas, as well as a hurricane watch in Mexico’s Yucatan peninsula.

Right now the tropical storm has maximum sustained winds of 40 mph.  It is expected to take a northwestward path later today and start to move at a faster speed, according to the National Hurricane Center.

The sustained winds are expected to reach 75 mph by Sunday.  Although this is much less than recent hurricanes such as Irma or Maria, forecasters are still warning people to watch out for flash floods and mudslides.  Rick Scott, the governor of Florida, has already addressed the state to discuss preparation for the storm.

After the devastations from hurricanes Irma and Maria, another hurricane clearly is something the United States can do without at this time.

Congress has been debating passing a 15 billion dollar hurricane recovery bill.  However, if Nate ends up being as catastrophic as Sandy was in 2012, American taxpayers may have a lot more to worry about.

Fox News co-host calls rising temps ‘BS’


Greg Gutfield, a co-host from Fox News, says that people talking about the hottest year ever or high temperatures are spreading “BS” and he claims they are not telling the full story.

“If you asked them what the increase was, they wouldn’t be able to tell you that every single year that there’s an increase, it is within the margin of error, meaning it isn’t increasing,” Gutfield said.

“So, those are called real truths. The poetic truth is the chaos and the hysteria, because that plays to the media. And it makes you feel so important. And you get to punish America for being so successful by doing these stupid deals. But if you read the facts about the high temperatures, about the reality of our past, it is all BS,” he added.

The Miami Herald did a great job arguing against that statement, interviewing many scientists who reveal that Gutfield is actually wrong, saying that long-term trends clearly show the temperature has been rising for decades as opposed to “single year increases.”

The Herald‘s coverage against Gutfield’s statement is that some years are within the margin of error, some are definitely not, and that Gutfield is not only wrong with the details but also on the big picture and they rate his statement with “pants on fire.”

Trump withdraws U.S. from Paris deal


Of course, it is “America first, Earth second” with President Donald Trump as he withdraws the U.S. from the Paris climate deal because he thinks it would harm American citizens and businesses.

“Compliance with the terms of the Paris accord … could cost America as much as 2.7 million lost jobs by 2025,” Trump said. “As someone who cares deeply about the environment, which I do, I cannot in good conscience support a deal that punishes the U.S.”

And of course, there is no one happier than Fox News, who claim that the deal is a “terrible idea.” They are also claiming that Trump is doing something “right” and “brave” because he is “leading” with his decision to withdraw.

I sure do hope that part of his plan to “Make America Great Again” is to find ways to reduce fossil fuel emissions because if we don’t combat climate change, there won’t be an America to make great again and certainly no American citizens and businesses to protect.

Trump withdraws U.S. from accord


On Thursday, President Donald Trump announced plans to withdraw the United States from the Paris climate accord, which weakens global efforts in combating climate change.

Trump stated that the deal imposed unfair restrictions to American businesses and workers and he vowed to take a stance against the “draconian” agreement.

However, because of the lengthy withdrawal process, which takes about four years, the decision falls in 2020, election time. This means that the fate of the deal could be up to the voters.

The withdrawal from the Paris climate agreement is unprecedented and has been a topic of discussion around the world.

The Chinese news media outlet China Daily has labeled Trump selfish and irresponsible,’ crippling U.S. leadership.

And shortly after issuing his withdrawal, a joint statement from the leaders of France, Italy, and Germany noted that the Paris climate accord was “irreversible” and unable to be renegotiated.

Elon Musk who was part of two business-related councils set up by Trump has said he would leave those panels in a statement on Twitter.

“Climate change is real. Leaving Paris is not good for America or the world,” he said.

Through the Paris climate accord signed by 195 other countries, the United States had agreed to cut its greenhouse gas emissions 26 to 28 percent below 2005 levels by 2025 and give up to $3 billion in aid for poorer countries by 2020.

The choice to withdraw from this agreement is irresponsible not just for the American people but to the continuing prosperity and health of the global environment.

In a statement that highlights the thoughts of many, former President Obama argued, “Even in the absence of American leadership; even as this administration joins a small handful of nations that reject the future; I’m confident that our states, cities, and businesses will step up and do even more to lead the way, and help protect for future generations the one planet we’ve got.”

U.S withdraws from Paris agreement


In a move that surprised very few, President Trump has decided to pull the United States from the Paris agreement – an historic global coalition meant to curb the effects of climate change by reducing worldwide emissions.

Despite widespread condemnation from political leaders, business leaders and environmentalist around the world, Trump affirms that he is doing so to benefit the American people who elected him to office.

The Paris agreement was signed by 195 countries and is supposed to create global accountability for rising temperatures and propose new carbon emission standards. The only countries that did not sign the agreement were Syria and Nicaragua, the former of which is currently marred by civil war.

“It would once have been unthinkable that an international agreement could prevent the United States from conducting its own domestic affairs,” said Trump during his speech at the Rose Garden on Thursday.

Trump’s position is that the 2015 agreement imposes wildly unfair business standards aimed at attacking American sovereignty and his ability to create business initiatives that would benefit American workers.

In an article written by Michael D. Shear of The New York Times, he states that business leaders like Elon Musk of Tesla, Jeffrey R. Immelt of General Electric and Lloyd C. Bankfield of Goldman Sachs, are diametrically opposed to the decision. They argue that the decision would hinder future job creation and shift markets for clean energy and technology to overseas competitors.

At this point, this kind of decision made by president Trump shows the obvious disconnect which he has with the American people – 73 percent of which actually supported the agreement.

In his article, Shear clearly tried to maintain neutrality by presenting both sides of the argument but it’s evident where he, and others like him, stands and it’s not with the president.

World leaders were quick to react to the news and the general consensus is that the decision presents more harm than a possible good. Especially considering the U.S is Earth’s second largest pollution contributor.

Trump did manage to say that a renegotiation was possible but they would have to be on his terms.

“We are getting out,” Trump said. “But we will start to negotiate, and we will see if we can make a deal that’s fair. And if we can, that’s great.”

It’s now in the hands of state and city leaders to decide if they are going to side with Trump, or the rest of the world.

Largest cruise ship coming to Miami


The world’s largest cruise ship is set to sail out of the cruise capitol of the world, PortMiami in November 2018.

This cruise ship, Symphony of the Seas, will be the fourth Oasis class ship from Royal Caribbean.

Symphony of the Seas comes in at 230,000 gross tons, is 215.5 feet wide, 1,188 feet long, and has a cruising speed of 22 knots (25 miles per hour). The ship will also hold 6,780 guests in 2,775 rooms and have 15 dining options.

Before she heads to Miami, she’s set to explore several destinations in the Mediterranean including Barcelona, Palma de Mallorca, Spain; Provence, France; Florence/Pisa Rome and Naples, Italy.

She then arrives at Miami, where she begins seven-night eastern and western Caribbean itineraries.

This is a major breakthrough and milestone, the biggest, largest, most vast cruise ship ever to exist.

Although that this sounds great, and the media certainly portrays it to be so, this doesn’t mean all good things.

About a week prior to this announcement that was made on every local news company and cruise or vacation website, there was breaking news of how a cruise ship ended up scrapping the bottom of the sea beds in Fort Lauderdale and how terrible those ships are for the environment.

But, with that being said, it was quickly forgotten about and trumped by this story “The World’s Largest Cruise Ship Ever Built to Set Sail.”

I think that, in this situation, the news media are definitely skewed, possibly because readers are more interested in these vast Titanic-like ships if you will. Or, it could possibly just be purely for revenue.

Either way, it doesn’t dismiss the fact that cruise ships are very harmful for our environment.

Little do people know that the ships release all of their waste into the sea mid-voyage away from beaches or land.

Not only that but incidents like the one that happened in Fort Lauderdale where it scrapped the bottom of the seabed are far too common.

Stories that are about the environmental impact cruise ships have put those specific companies in check.

The ones that are revolved around the negative factors of cruise ships don’t really get as much attention or popularity compared to ones that focus on the largest cruise ship in the world being launched.

Why? That I still wonder.

Gas prices rising as summer nears


As soon as we thought gas prices were going down, they’re going up again and this time there’s no escaping it.

A few years ago, people flocked gas stations when gas was under $2. People bought bigger cars thinking that it was going to stay cheap when in reality, it only lasted about a year.

Ever since then, gas prices have been rising slowly but steadily, with jumps here and there between 30 cents to 70 cents a gallon.

In places like South Florida, that’s where I notice it the most.

There are multiple reasons as to why gas prices rise. One of them is, due to the emissions during the winter compared to the summer, hotter weather, they try and change the way gas is formulated to its less of an impact on the environment.

This has a huge impact on traveling, especially for spring break and Memorial Day weekend.

Flights these days could be very cheap, but during this time of year, it’s pretty hard to find those.

I think this is a very typical story that has been around for a long time. There really isn’t a lot to cover on gas prices rising other than … they’re rising, duh!

But, with that said, it’s a necessity for people to know or be aware of if they’re planning on traveling or taking a vacation during these times because they need to know if it’s going to be more expensive due to the time of year they’re looking to travel.

I don’t think this is a very hard topic to cover and you can find articles like this written anywhere in our country in any state or city.

Protecting Kenya’s orphaned elephants


Elephants are very fragile creatures but they are also very strong creatures, especially baby elephants.

These baby elephants are one of the slowest animals to grow up. Not only are they born nearly blind, but it also takes 12 to 13 years for them to mature. Until this point, the calf needs its mother.

In Kenya, poaching is a problem, so the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust, one of the centers that rescues orphaned elephants in Kenya, works to protect these animals.

They now have saved hundreds of baby elephants and offer veterinary accommodations and educate local communities about elephants and taking care of them.

The ultimate goal is to create a new family and a new home for these elephants who have lost their own.

I thought that it was very interesting that CNN produced a story on this. I for one, absolutely love elephants. I’m obsessed with them so writing about it feels right.

With everything that is going on in the world that is newsworthy, CNN decided to prepare this story, and to be honest, I’m glad that they did but I’m not really sure why.

I looked to see if other news organizations were writing about the same things like they usually are, and there was nothing about protecting young elephants that came up.

I searched Google, looked at other news websites and found nothing. I found this to be a little odd.

Another thing that I would like to point out is that we are in the middle of a HUGE elephant marketing trend. At any store, you will find elephant apparel. Ivory Ella, a website that sells apparel but donates a portion of it to help save the elephants, is also another trend within itself.

Could it be that CNN may have covered this story to pull in new readers knowing this? If so, why are other news stations not doing the same?

Either way, the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust is the most successful orphan elephant rescue and rehabilitation program in the world. Things like this should get news attention and media coverage because it matters.

They deserve it.

Actress arrested for pipeline activism


Over the weekend, Shailene Woodley made headlines for being arrested at a peaceful protest in North Dakota.

According to the Los Angeles Times, the “Secret Life of the American Teenager” star was demonstrating her disapproval of the proposed 1,172-mile Dakota Access Pipeline that would transport 400,000 barrels of oil daily from North Dakota to Illinois alongside hundreds of other activists.

Naturally, environmentalists oppose the pipeline for multiple reasons, including the very real possibility of oil leaks that contaminate soil and underground water sources.

Additionally, the Los Angeles Times states that many Native American groups have been outspoken about the pipeline and were present at the protest because the pipeline will disturb sacred Native American lands.

The protest took place on Monday of this week, which also happened to be Columbus Day, which many are trying to re-dedicate as Indigenous Peoples’ Day.

Personally, I did not know about the protest until I saw “Shailene Woodley” trending on Facebook. I clicked on her name and learned what had happened.

It is interesting that the story trended because it involved a celebrity arrest rather than because the pipeline is a big deal in and of itself that affects all of us. I fear that if Woodley had not been involved, there would have been little news media attention given to the protest.

As an environmental activist myself, I am grateful to Woodley for being outspoken about this issue and for drawing attention to the demonstration.

Hermine coverage embraces drama


When Hermine, the first hurricane to make landfall in Florida since Wilma in 2005, swept across the southeastern United States last week, news organizations were quick to pounce on the story.

Journalists from all over the country were sent down to Florida to capture the classic hurricane images: waves crashing on coasts, heavy winds blowing palm trees and citizens kayaking through flooded streets.

While the dramatization of hurricanes is nothing new and is usually harmless, journalists must be careful not to misinform the public with exaggerated depictions of severe weather events.
ABC News tweeted a radar image just before Hermine made landfall last Thursday night showing tornado watches and warnings throughout Florida.

The graphic, albeit dramatic, is unclear and makes the viewer think that almost the entire state and the Gulf of Mexico is under siege by tornadoes.

This kind of fear-mongering journalism is unacceptable, especially for a national news organization as reputable as ABC.

ABC is not the only national news outlet that posted a click-bait tweet during a time of crisis. The New York Times tweeted an article just a few hours after Hermine made landfall stating that the increased frequency of hurricanes this season could be related to global warming.screen-shot-2016-09-08-at-10-25-09-am

While sea-level rise due to climate change makes coastal areas more vulnerable to storm surge flooding, scientific studies have not shown any correlation between climate change and the frequency and intensity of tropical cyclones.

The New York Times could have waited until after Hermine dissipated to post the article, but instead decided to take advantage of some of the public’s worst fears in order to gain readers.

The purpose of news organizations during states of emergency is to calmly inform people of mortal danger based on scientific fact, not frighten the public with melodramatic stories and images.

Ugly truth about rise in sea levels


The idea that sea levels are rapidly rising and eventually will engulf most of the land that we call home is not exactly the most uplifting topic. Most people find the topic rather disheartening.

It’s one of those “what you don’t know won’t hurt you” topics. Yes, the truth can be disappointing but it is the job of the news media to tell readers what they need to know, even if it may not be what they want to know.

New findings about the dangers and speed of sea level rise were published this week. Reports revealed that melting ice in Antarctica could cause sea levels to rise by one meter, or three feet, within the next century. Factoring in melting ice all around the world, sea levels could rise five to six feet by the end of the century, making some areas impossible to live on.

So what makes this newsworthy? Why does the news media feel that readers and viewers should be aware of rising sea levels expected to occur in a century when we will all surely be dead by then?

The answer is simple. We, as humans, are the ones contributing to this problem. It is a domino effect. Every time we do something that harms the environment, we are contributing to the emission of heat trapping gases into the environment, thus contributing to the greater issue of climate change. As temperatures rise, so do sea levels.

The news media present us with this information to show the effects of our actions. Though we may not be alive to see and experience the effects of rising sea levels, the next generations will be. Our actions today are affecting how others will live in the future. Although rising sea levels seems to be a distant phenomenon that we do not want to think about, it is something we need to think about.

SeaWorld changes whales policy


When the documentary “Blackfish” was released in 2013, SeaWorld had received a lot of negative attention about the safety and health of its orcas. Back then, a lot of news media coverage has been focused on Sea World in a very negative way. An orca had just recently killed trainer Dawn Brancheau in 2010.

“SeaWorld has received a lot of content and negativity from all over the world. It has been ignoring all the criticism it received. PETA had campaigned hard and today there is a payoff for future generations of orcas,” PETA President Ingrid E. Newkirk said in a statement.

All the animals — orcas, dolphins, beluga whales, seals and lot of others — have suffered living in confinement at SeaWorld. The business model of Sea World changed, which is truly meaningful. Because of all the news media attention that they have received they have decided to re brand themselves, which has not worked. The news media and public had their opinion and their new management team decided to listen to them. This has resulted in a new way of thinking for SeaWorld.

Thanks to all the attention that SeaWorld has gotten from the news media, it has finally decided to end its captive breeding program of orcas.

40,000 acres of land burn in Oklahoma


With high temperatures in the area, fires burned more than 40,000 acres of wildlife in Oklahoma.  For the Midwest, this occurrence was a big deal to the region.

“We haven’t had one of these in the last few years,” said Mark Goeller, the Oklahoma Forestry Services’ fire management chief, told CNN. “Fires are going to burn all night.”

Fires in Harper County had 17,280 acres of land burnt in a matter of three hours, according to Goeller.

In fact, 76 out of the 77 counties in Oklahoma received red flag warnings, that advise the citizens of extreme caution of open flames in the area.

Oklahoma’s Department of Emergency Management reported that there are no injuries or loss of life, but a few people lost their homes.

You never how hot it will get out in the Midwest.