Commentary

A man walks through the flags of the 'In America: Remember' public art installation near the Washington Monument on Sept. 19, 2021, in Washington, D.C. The installation commemorated all the Americans who have died due to COVID-19. It was based on a concept by artist Suzanne Brennan Firstenberg, and includes more than 650,000 small plastic flags, some with personal messages to those who have died, planted in 20 acres of the National Mall. (Photo by Al Drago/Getty Images)

COVID-19 deaths in the U.S. continue to be undercounted, research shows

BY: , , and - January 27, 2023

Since the COVID-19 pandemic was declared in March 2020, a recurring topic of debate has been whether official COVID-19 death statistics in the U.S. accurately capture the fatalities associated with SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. Some politicians and a few public health practitioners have argued that COVID-19 deaths are overcounted. For instance, a January […]

Salmon hang to dry on a rack at Lake Clark National Park in 2018. Lake Clark is part of the Bristol Bay region. (Photo provided by National Park Service)

EPA’s work underscores why proposed Pebble Mine is wrong for unique Bristol Bay

BY: - January 26, 2023

In the coming days, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is expected to release its final determination for Clean Water Act Section 404c restrictions in Bristol Bay, Alaska. If the previously released recommended determination is a guide, the final determination will provide long-sought protections against the proposed Pebble Mine, lifting a cloud of uncertainty under which […]

Various pages of U.S. IRS tax return forms are seen in this undated photo. (Photo by Phillip Rubino/Getty Images)

U.S. House Republicans go to bat for wealthy tax cheaters and against the national interest

BY: - January 25, 2023

The new U.S. House majority nearly came to blows in electing one of their own as speaker of the House of Representatives. But those deep fissures were nowhere to be seen days later, when they voted unanimously for a bill that would protect the rich and powerful at the expense of everyone else. Right out […]

House Speaker McCarthy’s powers are still strong – but he’ll be fighting against new rules

BY: - January 23, 2023

Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy is already facing the limits of his power. A single member of the House – from the far-right Freedom Caucus to a progressive on the far left, or any member in between – can threaten his speakership. And at least one Democrat already is promising to do just that. […]

A gas ring on a stove powered by natural gas. (Photo Illustration by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)

Why do gas stoves matter to the climate — and the gas industry?

BY: - January 20, 2023

Gas stoves are a leading source of hazardous indoor air pollution, but they emit only a tiny share of the greenhouse gases that warm the climate. Why, then, have they assumed such a heated role in climate politics? This debate reignited on Jan. 9, 2023, when Richard Trumka Jr., a member of the U.S. Consumer […]

Making child care more affordable in Alaska is a win-win — the federal Child Tax Credit can help

BY: - January 19, 2023

During my time in service to the people of Alaska, I was mystified year after year that the debate around our support for children and families could often erupt into controversy. My experience showed me that the debates were around the edges when the sound discussions could have been in the middle. It is in […]

Wiliam Wordsworth lived and wrote in Grasmere, in England’s Lake District, from 1799-1808. (Photo by Mick Knapton/Wikipedia, CC BY-SA)

William Wordsworth and the Romantics anticipated today’s idea of a nature-positive life

BY: - January 18, 2023

Musical performances usually happen in concert halls or clubs, but famed cellist Yo-Yo Ma is exploring a new venue: U.S. national parks. In a project called Our Common Nature, Ma is performing in settings such as the Great Smoky Mountains and the Grand Canyon. By making music and bringing people together in scenic places, Ma […]

Mark McCormick speaks at the Martin Luther King Jr. celebration Jan. 12, 2023, at the Kansas Statehouse. (Photo by Sherman Smith/Kansas Reflector)

On this Martin Luther King Jr. Day, no one should settle for ‘a piece of freedom’

BY: - January 16, 2023

Some historians mark the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.’s murder as the end of the civil rights movement. Over an arc of 14 years — from the 1954 Brown Decision to King’s death in 1968 — the nation attempted to address its racial caste system. The same nation that launched a war on hunger and […]

DOJ probes Biden document handling. What is classified information, anyway?

BY: - January 13, 2023

This story is an updated version of an article that was originally published on May 16, 2017. Before coming to academia, I worked for many years as an analyst at both the State Department and the Department of Defense. I held a top secret clearance, frequently worked with classified information and participated in classified meetings. […]

The moon and ice floes are seen in an Arctic night, Sept. 16, 2008, on the Beaufort Sea near Alaska. (Photo by Dr. Pablo Clemente-Colon/National Ice Center)

Urban light pollution is a danger for marine ecosystems – new research

BY: - January 11, 2023

Cities are artificially lit to allow humans to make use of the night. This light pollution means that stars are often barely visible in urban skies. But reduced stargazing is not the only impact of artificial light at night. Urban development in coastal areas is increasingly exposing marine ecosystems to artificial light. This exposure is […]

(Getty Images photo)

Health insurance just might save you — sign up at healthcare.gov by Jan. 15

BY: - January 10, 2023

If you don’t have health insurance — or just want to explore your options — go to healthcare.gov on or before January 15th to get covered with affordable health insurance now. Having and keeping good quality affordable health care is personal for me. The Affordable Care Act saved my life. In 2017, I walked into […]

A U.S. Air Force F-15 Eagle assigned to the California Air National Guard’s 144th Fighter Wing taxis out a combat alert cell hangar before a sortie with F-22 Raptors assigned to the 3rd Wing at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, April 18, 2022. The Eagles deployed to Alaska to improve interoperability with JBER Raptor’s real-world alert mission. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Andrew Britten)

Amid tumultuous times, NORAD needs a consistent Canada-U.S. commitment

BY: - January 9, 2023

The North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) has often struggled for political and military attention. This unique Canada-United States military command is in the spotlight right now because of growing tensions among the U.S., Russia and China. Both the U.S. National Defense Strategy of 2022 and Canada’s 2017 Strong, Secure, Engaged policy prioritize defending North […]