Plastic-eating caterpillar could be a breakthrough in plastic waste disposal.

After thirty minutes, holes are created by wax worms. (Image courtesy of CSIC)

Scientists have made a discovery that could help them break down plastic and possibly spell the end to plastic waste. A wax worm, Galleria mellonella, is known as a pest that eats and grows off of beeswax. It was accidentally discovered when a beekeeper found holes in the plastic bags she used to hold the worms. After contacting a scientist, a study was done and one hundred wax worms were introduced to a supermarket bag made of polyethylene plastic. After forty minutes, there were holes in the bag. The reason why the animals can process plastic is unknown but they transform the exceptionally stable molecule into ethylene glycol. With over eight million tonnes of plastic in our oceans, this innovation is a step in eliminating plastic waste.

Source and more information can be found here.

North Korean missile test ends in failure.

A chart showing the increase in North Korean missile launches. (Image courtesy of the Center for Strategic and International Studies)

On 29 April, North Korea conducted another missile test as the United States and China have been trying to slow the country’s military development. The projectile did not pose a threat to the United States and was unsuccessful. The country has been under close scrutiny and anticipates the sixth underground nuclear test in the weeks to come. North Korea has not launched an intercontinental ballistic missile to mark important holidays in April and instead, showed off new missiles and a enormous live-fire drill. The reason why the missile launches failed is unknown and the army has failed to produce more missiles that pose a threat.

Source and more information can be found here.

Fyre Festival: luxury event turns into chaos.

Fyre Festival completely disorganized, not ready for guests. (Image courtesy of CNN)

Thousands viewed misleading ads for a luxury vacation in the Bahamas, including live performances, fresh food, and beautiful views for the price of twelve thousand dollars. However, the guests who purchased luxury vacations received nothing except half completed tents, soggy catered food, and mass disorganization. Many travellers tried to leave the festival early, but to no avail. Everyone who spent money on the event was guaranteed a full refund.

Source and more information can be found here.

Arsenic polluted water linked to cancer in India.

Child in Bihar drinks water. (Image courtesy of CNN)

Due to the consumption of contaminated water, millions of people in Bihar, India are exhibiting symptoms of arsenic poisoning. According to scientists, these symptoms are only shown after years of exposure. Symptoms of arsenic poisoning include pigmentation and the abnormal hardening of skin on palms and soles. Researchers say that the levels of arsenic in Bihar have well exceeded the healthy amounts outlined by the World Health Organization. As a remedy, scientists are trying individual testing for water pumps and trying to target areas with more water contamination than others.

Source and more information can be found here.

Turkey removes almost  four thousand officials and blocks Wikipedia.

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey has purged thousands of citizens after a failed coup in 2016. (Image courtesy of Associated Press)

The Turkish government has expanded its suppression on dissent and free speech on 30 April. They fired thirty-nine hundred civil servants and blocked access to Wikipedia, a free online encyclopedia. A total of one hundred forty thousand workers have been dismissed, more than fifteen hundred civil groups shut down, and one hundred fifty news outlets banned from the country after a failed coup in 2016. Workers were fired after alleged connection to an Islamic group and Wikipedia refused to take down material the government deemed offensive. The repression is being fought with over one hundred twenty thousand citizens signing a petition against the actions. The clampdown has affected liberals, leftists, and members of the secular opposition.

Source and more information can be found here.