Great Repeal Bill: UK to replace EU laws in transition out of European Union.

Exit negotiations must be approved by leaders of the EU. (Image courtesy of Getty Images)

The British government intends to replace EU law with domestic law, ending the influence of some twelve thousand EU regulations in force in Britain. Many laws covering areas such as workers’ rights, environmental regulations, and the business sector must be converted to UK statutes. The Great Repeal Bill is intended to facilitate a smooth transition out of the EU for Britain, ensuring that the same laws will apply after the exit day in two years’ time. During this transition, the European Communities Act of 1972, which gives EU law supremacy over UK law, will be repealed. The bill could grant the government an almost unprecedented level of unaccountable power, allowing ministers to repeal rights and protections without parliamentary scrutiny. Prime Minister Theresa May hopes Britain and the EU will continue to remain close allies and forge a new, stronger relationship.

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El Salvador becomes the first nation to implement a ban on metal mining.

Over 90% of El Salvador’s surface waters are estimated to be polluted by toxic chemicals. (Image courtesy of Getty Images)

Lawmakers in El Salvador unanimously passed a ban on metal mining to protect the country’s water sources from mining pollution. Partial bans had already been imposed in countries such as Costa Rica, Argentina, and Colombia. El Salvador’s unsustainable farming practices and poor industrial regulations had led to considerable soil erosion and the destruction of its forests, causing significant water loss despite frequent rainfall. Support for the ban had increased since October last year, when a multinational mining company tried to force the El Salvadoran government to pay millions in compensation for denying it permission to dig for gold. The efforts by the people and the government mark a historical victory in protecting the environment from destructive economic projects.

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Astronomers discover supermassive black holes also create stars.

Gases swirl around the centre of a black hole in an accretion disk. (Image courtesy of NASA)

The supermassive black holes located at the centre of galaxies can not only destroy, but also create, stars. These black holes have masses over one billion times that of the Sun. Using the Very Large Telescope (VLT) in Chile, a team of European researchers found evidence of a star’s birth while observing the collision of two galaxies six hundred million light-years away. While nothing can escape a black hole, gases swirling around a black hole could be heated to incredible temperatures and violently flung out of the galaxy to create a star thousands of light-years away. This find could reshape theories on galactic formation.

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Cyclone Debbie makes landfall on Australia’s coast. 

Cyclone Debbie causes outdoor furniture to fall in a pool. (Image courtesy of Associated Press)

On 28 March, the northeastern part of Australia was severely damaged by cyclone Debbie, caused by its intense wind gusts and heavy rain. The storm left almost fifty thousand homes without power and forced tens of thousands of people to move further inland. The storm first hit tourist islands and then low-lying homes on the mainland. The cyclone’s slow progress has officials worried about extensive damage. Furthermore, emergency responders have limited communications due to the lack of power and telephone service. The government has distributed one thousand personnel to help with the situation. Some of the long-term issues from the storm include damage to the Great Barrier Reef, which is already in a fragile condition.

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Gilbert Baker, the creator of the LGBT rainbow flag, dies at the age of 65.

Gilbert Baker is seen with his rainbow flag. (Image courtesy of Getty Images)

On 31 March, Gilbert Baker, the creator of the LGBT rainbow flag, passed away. He created the flag in 1978 for New York’s gay freedom day, and it has been a symbol of acceptance and diversity ever since. Each of the eight colours stands for a different part of humanity, such as sexuality and human spirit. Baker’s history influenced him to make the flag as he served in the United States Army in the 1970s and was exposed to the gay liberation movement in San Francisco. After leaving the Army, he learned how to sew and began to sew flags, eventually creating the rainbow flag as well as designs for the presidents of France and Venezuela.

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