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Sir David Attenborough says fixed-term parliaments lead to lack of climate focus

Sir David Attenborough says fixed-term parliaments lead to lack of climate focus

Science
The UK's fixed-term parliaments could see politicians failing to prioritise climate change, veteran naturalist Sir David Attenborough has suggested.He told the first citizens' assembly on climate having a five-year government leads to a lack of long-term planning.The 110-strong assembly in Birmingham will meet over four weekends to examine options for how the UK can meet its greenhouse gas emission targets.Sir David said he was "extremely grateful" to those taking part.It is hoped their recommendations - to be published in April - will help inform Parliament and the government on policies to reach net zero emissions.Sir David said one of the problems with Parliament having a fixed length of five years is that the effects of climate change may only be felt...
HS2 risks misjudged from the start, says watchdog

HS2 risks misjudged from the start, says watchdog

Business
No-one took full account of how complex and risky the HS2 high-speed rail project was likely to be, the government spending watchdog has said.The Department for Transport (DfT) and HS2 Ltd did not allow for all uncertainties when estimating initial costs, the National Audit Office (NAO) said.In 2015, HS2 was due to cost £56bn.Earlier this week, however, a leaked government-commissioned review suggested the total could reach £106bn.The findings of the independent review, conducted by former HS2 Ltd chair Doug Oakervee, have not yet been officially published. The government will use the report to inform its final decision on whether to give the go-ahead to the HS2 project, and has said a final decision on whether to continue with i
E-cigarettes don’t help smokers quit, U.S. Surgeon General says

E-cigarettes don’t help smokers quit, U.S. Surgeon General says

Health
Jan. 23 (UPI) -- United States Surgeon General Jerome Adams has declared that e-cigarette use doesn't help smokers quit -- but it may get non-smokers to start. Adams made the remarks Thursday as he presented his office's 2020 report on tobacco. He noted that despite the fact that many e-cigarette -- or vaping -- products are promoted as a tool to help smokers quit, scientific evidence supporting these claims remains mixed. The 2020 report -- the 34th overall -- was the first in roughly three decades to address smoking cessation specifically, and it comes in the midst of ongoing debate in Congress and elsewhere about flavored vaping products and their appeal, particularly among young people. Earlier this month, the Food and Drug Administration announced a ban on flavored e-cigarette prod...
Marcus Rashford: Ole Gunnar Solskjaer ‘has to take some blame’, says Ian Wright

Marcus Rashford: Ole Gunnar Solskjaer ‘has to take some blame’, says Ian Wright

Sports
Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer "thought about himself before the player" when Marcus Rashford picked up a back injury which could keep him out for three months, says former England striker Ian Wright.Rashford, 22, came on as a substitute and then went off injured during United's 1-0 home win over Wolves in last week's FA Cup third-round replay.Wright, speaking on the Monday Night Club on BBC Radio 5 Live, believes "someone should be held accountable" because it is likely to cost United. "Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said he knew Marcus Rashford was struggling and played him against Wolves - now he's out for three months," said Wright."We're talking about an explosive player that's goi...
HS2: Rail link costs could rise to £106bn, says review

HS2: Rail link costs could rise to £106bn, says review

Business
Media playback is unsupported on your device Building the high-speed rail link HS2 could cost up to £106bn, a government-commissioned review has said.The unpublished report, seen by the Financial Times, says there is "considerable risk" that estimated costs could rise by another 20%.In 2015, HS2 was set to cost £56bn.The review also recommends pausing the second phase of the project while experts look at whether conventional lines could help link Birmingham to Manchester and Leeds instead.Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham told the BBC's Today programme it would "not be acceptable" if the North of England portion of HS2 was delayed or downgraded to slower speeds. "To me that would be the same old story. London to Birmingham, money is no