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Google Tracks Those Who Opted Out, $289 Million Monsanto Settlement, The World’s Largest Family
Revealing News Articles
August 21, 2018

Dear friends,

Google Tracks Those Who Opt Out.

Explore below key excerpts of revealing news articles on Google's tracking of detailed location data even when users opt out of location tracking, Monsanto ordered to pay $289 million to a former school groundskeeper diagnosed with terminal cancer after using the company's glyphosate-containing weedkiller, the admission by major voting-machine supplier Election Systems and Software that it sold voting machines with remote-access software preinstalled, and more.

Read also wonderfully inspiring articles on Dr. Charles Mully's creation of the "world's largest family" by rescuing thousands of abandoned children in East Africa and building a village to house them, the Los Angeles City Council's steps towards creating a publicly owned bank, solar power research breakthroughs that make organic solar cells nearly as efficient as their much costlier silicon counterparts, and more. You can also skip to this section now.

Each excerpt is taken verbatim from the major media website listed at the link provided. If any link fails, see this page. The most important sentences are highlighted. And don't miss the "What you can do" section below the summaries. By educating ourselves and spreading the word, we can and will build a brighter future.

With best wishes for a transformed world,
Mark Bailey and Fred Burks for PEERS and WantToKnow.info

Special note (sources may be less reliable): Explore a revealing article on how YouTube is now adding propaganda to UFO and vaccine videos. Read a UN report revealing that electromagnetic radiation from a large tower caused an exodus of wildlife from the preserve near the tower. A recent conference sponsored by the UK's Royal Society of Medicine explored mechanistic theories that underlie homeopathy. Watch an eight-minute MSNBC clip about a book which claims Trump was compromised by the Russians decades ago.

Quote of the week: "If you do what you've always done, you will get what you've always gotten."  ~~  Tony Robbins, Inspirational Speaker

Video of the week: Watch an revealing video on Lyme disease and solid evidence it was accidentally released from a biological warfare lab near Lyme, Conn in the US.


Google found to track the location of users who have opted out
August 13, 2018, NBC/AP
https://www.nbcnews.com/tech/tech-news/google-tracks-your-movements-it-or-not...

Google wants to know where you go so badly that it records your movements even when you explicitly tell it not to. An Associated Press investigation found that many Google services on Android devices and iPhones store your location data even if you've used privacy settings that say they will prevent it from doing so. Computer-science researchers at Princeton confirmed these findings at the AP's request. Storing your minute-by-minute travels carries privacy risks. So the company will let you "pause" a setting called Location History. Google's support page on the subject states: "You can turn off Location History at any time. With Location History off, the places you go are no longer stored." That isn't true. Even with Location History paused, some Google apps automatically store time-stamped location data without asking. For example, Google stores a snapshot of where you are when you merely open its Maps app. And some searches that have nothing to do with location, like "chocolate chip cookies," or "kids science kits," pinpoint your precise latitude and longitude - accurate to the square foot - and save it to your Google account. Since 2014, Google has let advertisers track the effectiveness of online ads at driving foot traffic, a feature that Google has said relies on user location histories. The company is pushing further into such location-aware tracking to drive ad revenue, which rose 20 percent last year to $95.4 billion.

Note: This article instructs you how to effectively delete Google's tracking of your movements. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corporate corruption and the disappearance of privacy.


Jury orders Monsanto to pay $289 million to cancer patient in Roundup lawsuit
August 10, 2018, USA Today
https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/2018/08/10/jury-orders-monsanto-pay-289...

A jury ordered chemical giant Monsanto to pay $289 million Friday to a school groundskeeper who got terminal cancer after using Roundup, one of the world's most popular weed killers. The Superior Court jury [found] that Dewayne Johnson's non-Hodgkin lymphoma was at least partly due to using glyphosate, the primary ingredient in Roundup. Johnson regularly used glyphosate to spray fields while working as a groundskeeper. Monsanto "acted with malice, oppression or fraud and should be punished for its conduct," Judge Suzanne Ramos Bolanos announced in court. Hundreds of lawsuits claiming Roundup causes cancer have been given the green light to proceed to trial. Cancer victims and families presenting cases say Monsanto knew about the ingredient's risk for years, but failed to warn buyers. Johnson's doctors testified he is unlikely to live past 2020. The 46-year-old Bay-area resident worked for a California county school system and applied the weed killer up to 30 times per year as part of his pest-control responsibilities. During that time, he mixed and sprayed hundreds of gallons of the chemical. “Today the jury confirmed what we have known since our investigation began — that Monsanto knew Roundup contained cancer-causing ingredients and failed to take this product off the shelf and protect consumers. The company chose corporate profit and greed above humanity,” said Micah Dortch of the Potts Law Firm.

Note: The EPA continues to use industry studies to declare Roundup safe while ignoring independent scientists. A recent independent study published in a scientific journal found a link between glyphosate and gluten intolerance. Internal FDA emails suggest that the food supply contains far more glyphosate than government reports indicate. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on food system corruption and health.


Election Hacking: Voting-Machine Supplier Admits It Used Hackable Software Despite Past Denials
July 17, 2018, Newsweek
https://www.newsweek.com/election-hacking-voting-machines-software-1028948

One of the country’s largest voting machine makers has admitted in a letter to a U.S. senator that some of its past election-management systems had remote-access software preinstalled, despite past denials that any of its systems were equipped with such software. Election Systems and Software (ES&S) told Democratic Senator Ron Wyden ... that the company provided election equipment with remote connection software to an unspecified number of states from 2000 to 2006. “ES&S provided pcAnywhere remote connection software on the [Election-Management System] workstation to a small number of customers between 2000 and 2006,” wrote Tom Burt, ES&S president. The election-management system is used to count official election results and sometimes to program voting machines. PcAnywhere was the name of the remote-access software made by Symantec. In 2012, Symantec told all of its customers to disable or to uninstall the software after admitting it had been hacked in 2006, at the same time that ES&S was selling election-management systems with pcAnywhere preinstalled. ES&S would not say how many systems were sold with the software from 2000 to 2006 but stressed the company stopped using it in 2007, after it was prohibited by the Election Assistance Commission. A computer science professor at Carnegie Mellon University discovered in 2011 that the technology was pre-installed on an election-management system that was sold to a Pennsylvania county.

Note: For more on this threat to democracy, see this excellent essay. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing elections corruption news articles from reliable major media sources. Then explore the excellent, reliable resources provided in our Elections Information Center.


John Oliver Confronts Fake Grassroots Movements
August 13, 2018, Time
http://time.com/5365190/john-oliver-astroturfing-last-week-tonight/

Astroturfing is when corporations or organization[s] try to make it seem as though whatever they are selling is part of a grassroots movement. For example when a seeming small group calling themselves Americans Against Food Taxes run a national ad campaign against a potential beverage tax. It’s not paid for by a small grassroots movement of concerned citizens, but a large beverage conglomerate lobbying against a soda tax. According to [John] Oliver, in the wake of U.S. Supreme Court decisions like Citizens United, astroturfing is becoming increasing common. Like a national wetlands organization funded by real estate developers and oil companies and a seeming restaurant worker group campaigning against minimum wage increase. “It’s pure straight up opposite world,” said Oliver. Some astroturfing experts work with many special interest groups, creating nonprofit shell companies of sorts to ensure that their ties to the fake grassroots campaigns can be kept secret. One of “the most infuriating tools” of astroturfing is the use of paid protestors. These paid protestors show up at places like town hall meetings masquerading as concerned citizens and reciting lines fed to them by special interest groups. The existence of these paid protestors is now a common theme on conspiracy message boards. “That is hugely dangerous,” said Oliver.

Note: The New York Times recently reported on the Koch Brothers' use of tactics like this to kill public transit projects. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corporate corruption and the manipulation of public perception.


Even the FBI Agrees: When Undercover Agents Pose as Journalists, it Hurts Real Journalists' Work
August 7, 2018, The Intercept
https://theintercept.com/2018/08/07/fbi-undercover-journalist-documentary-bundy...

The FBI doesn’t want the public to know more about how its agents pose as journalists during undercover investigations. But, in a federal court case, Justice Department lawyers ... acknowledged in a court filing that FBI agents who pretend to be journalists create a chilling effect, making it harder for real journalists to gain trust and cooperation from sources. The astonishing admission came as the FBI attempted to fend off litigation from Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, which has filed requests for documents under the Freedom of Information Act. The Reporters Committee’s litigation involves documents related to an FBI undercover operation in which agents posed as documentary filmmakers from a fake company called Longbow Productions to investigate Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy and his supporters. In a motion filed July 23, Assistant U.S. Attorney Johnny H. Walker argued that providing FBI documents about the Bundy investigation and others in which a journalistic cover may have been used would not only disclose sensitive investigative techniques but also ... “would allow criminals to judge whether they should completely avoid any contacts with documentary film crews, rendering the investigative technique ineffective.” The FBI has previously disclosed that agents have pretended to be news reporters to further investigations. But questions remain about how often such covers are used and what policies are in place to govern the deployment of fake reporters.

Note: A mistrial was recently declared in the case against Cliven Bundy and others after the Justice Department was found to have withheld "massive amounts of evidence undermining federal charges". For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and the erosion of civil liberties.


I traced missile casings in Syria back to their original sellers, so it’s time for the west to reveal who they sell arms to
July 23, 2018, The Independent (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.independent.co.uk/voices/syria-missile-arms-deals-west-us-uk-saudi...

Note down this number: MFG BGM-71E-1B. I found [it] printed on the side of a spent missile casing lying in the basement of a bombed-out Islamist base in eastern Aleppo last year. At the top were the words “Hughes Aircraft Co”, founded in California ... and sold in 1997 to Raytheon, the massive US defence contractor whose profits last year came to $23.35bn. Shareholders include the Bank of America and Deutsche Bank. There were dozens of other used-up identical missile casings in the same underground room in the ruins of eastern Aleppo. These anti-armour missiles ... were not individual items smuggled into Syria. These were shipments, whole batches of weapons that left their point of origin on military aircraft pallets. There are videos of Islamist fighters using the BGM-71E-1B variety in Idlib province two years before I found the casings of other anti-tank missiles in neighbouring Aleppo. There is neither an obligation nor an investigative mechanism on the part of the arms manufacturers to ensure that their infinitely expensive products are not handed over ... to Isis, al-Nusra/al-Qaeda – which was clearly the case in Aleppo – or some other [group] branded by the US State Department itself as a “terrorist organisation”. Why don’t Nato track all these weapons as they leave Europe and America? Why don’t they expose the real end-users of these deadly shipments? The arms manufacturers I spoke to in the Balkans attested that Nato and the US are fully aware of the buyers of all their machine guns and mortars.

Note: This article was written by award-winning investigative journalist Robert Fisk. More on this available here. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing war news articles from reliable major media sources.


More than 300 accused priests listed in Pennsylvania report on Catholic Church sex abuse
August 14, 2018, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/acts-of-faith/wp/2018/08/14/pennsylvania...

More than 300 Catholic priests across Pennsylvania sexually abused children over seven decades, protected by a hierarchy of church leaders who covered it up, according to a sweeping grand jury report released Tuesday. The investigation ... identified 1,000 children who were victims, but reported that there probably are thousands more. “Priests were raping little boys and girls, and the men of God who were responsible for them not only did nothing; they hid it all. For decades,” the grand jury wrote in its report. The 18-month investigation covered six of the state’s dioceses ... and follows other state grand jury reports that revealed abuse and coverups in two other dioceses. The grand jury reviewed more than 2 million documents, including from the “secret archives” - what church leaders referred to the reports of abuse they hid from public for decades, state Attorney General Josh Shapiro said. Few criminal cases may result from the massive investigation. “As a consequence of the coverup, almost every instance of abuse we found is too old to be prosecuted,” the report said. The grand jury’s report follows the resignation last month of Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, a towering figure in the U.S. church and a former archbishop of Washington who was accused of sexually abusing children and adults for decades.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing sexual abuse scandal news articles from reliable major media sources.


The scale of the Catholic Church’s criminality still shocks
August 14, 2018, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/the-scale-of-the-catholic-churchs...

The Catholic Church’s decades-long practice of enabling and systematically covering up the rape and molestation of children by priests is by now sickeningly familiar. Yet the scale of abuse; the breadth and depth of trauma inflicted by predators wearing Roman collars; and the coldbloodedness of senior church figures zealous in their resolve to protect the church but indifferent to the suffering of minors, retain their power to shock the conscience. So it was Tuesday when Pennsylvania’s Supreme Court released a massive report on decades of alleged abuse in six of the state’s eight dioceses, where nearly 2 million Catholics live today. The report ... lays out what amounts to a criminal conspiracy, breathtaking in its scope, reaching from parishes and parochial schools to the Vatican. The report names some 300 accused predator priests, who allegedly abused at least 1,000 victims. Yet even as the findings were published, the coverup continues: The report is heavily redacted, owing to ongoing litigation by unidentified clergymen and others seeking to block publication of certain names. That, Attorney General Josh Shapiro noted, is a coverup of a decades-long coverup. The conspiracy — as in Boston and practically every major city in the United States and many overseas — involved bishops, archbishops and even cardinals. Even as apologists for the Vatican ... continue peddling the myth that the Catholic Church’s pedophile scandals simply reflect society’s problems, the weight of evidence is overwhelming proof to the contrary.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing sexual abuse scandal news articles from reliable major media sources.


Torture of al-Qaeda suspect described in 2002 cables sent by CIA Director Gina Haspel
August 10, 2018, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/torture-of-al-qaeda...

The torture of a suspected al-Qaeda terrorist, including waterboarding, is described in meticulous detail in newly-declassified cables that CIA Director Gina Haspel sent to agency headquarters in late 2002, when she headed a secret U.S. detention facility in Thailand. The suspect, Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri, was believed to have been involved in planning the USS Cole bombing in Yemen in 2000. Nashiri’s treatment during interrogation — forced nudity, shackling, being slammed against walls, being confined in a small box and mock executions, as well as waterboarding — has been previously mentioned in broad terms in official reports, hearings, court cases and news reports. But many specifics about what happened to Nashiri during his several-week stay at the Thailand facility, while Haspel was briefly in charge, have not been made public. They are contained in 11 cables obtained under the Freedom of Information Act by the National Security Archive, a private research institute. On the 12th day of his detention, one cable to the home office reported, “interrogation escalated rapidly from subject being aggressively debriefed by interrogators to multiple applications of the walling technique, and ultimately, multiple applications of the watering technique.” The interrogators, it later said, “covered subject’s head with the hood and left him on the water board, moaning, shaking and asking God to help him repeatedly.”

Note: The above article contains graphic descriptions of torture overseen and then covered up by Gina Haspel. Another article, by a former CIA counterterrorism officer who was imprisoned for blowing the whistle on the CIA torture, referred to Haspel's actions as "war crimes, crimes against humanity". For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing intelligence agency corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.


These Americans suffered severe neurological disorders in Cuba. Now they have a lawyer.
June 20, 2018, Miami Herald
https://www.miamiherald.com/news/nation-world/world/americas/cuba...

Several U.S victims of alleged "health attacks" in Cuba have hired a lawyer out of concern over how the U.S. government will handle their long-term medical treatment. "That's not at all clear," said lawyer Mark Zaid, who represents eight of the at least 24 U.S. diplomats, intelligence officers and relatives affected by the incidents in Havana. "Some already had to spend their own money" on treatment. "Are they being treated or are they being studied? It's not entirely clear what is happening," the lawyer said, adding that some of the victims had problems accessing their medical records at the UPenn treatment center because the records are government property. Zaid added that ... the cases have placed the government in a predicament because of the mystery not just on the so-called attacks but the injuries experienced. For example, federal employees who have been injured by incidents such as explosions, "the wounds have been specific and concrete, not strange brain and neurological damages. It's much more complicated." In a separate case, another Zaid client - Mike Beck, a retired National Security Agency counterintelligence officer - suffered a "potentially similar attack" in the 1990s when he traveled to an unidentified country. Years later, Beck and a companion on the trip were found to be suffering from Parkinson's disease. A confidential report convinced him that his illness was linked to a covert attack with a weapon that used microwaves, Beck told The Washington Post last year.

Note: There is no doubt that the US has electromagnetic weapons that can cause neurological disorders like this. We suspect this was a false flag attack to turn the American public against the recently opened U.S. embassy in Havana. To learn about how electromagnetic weapons can be used to torture anyone without legal recourse, listen to this revealing interview. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on intelligence agency corruption and non-lethal weapons.


Was a spy’s Parkinson’s disease caused by a secret microwave weapon attack?
December 5, 2017, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/was-a-spys-parkinsons-disease-caused-by-a...

Mike Beck, a National Security Agency counterintelligence officer, could always bang out 60 words a minute. But in early 2006, Beck struggled to move his fingers at their usual typing speed. Soon after, a brain scan showed why: Beck had Parkinson's disease, the second-most-common neurodegenerative disorder in the United States. He was only 46 - unusually young for Parkinson's. No one in his family had ever had it. Then, in an unsettling coincidence, he learned that an NSA colleague — a man he'd spent a pivotal week in 1996 with in a hostile country — had also just been diagnosed with Parkinson's. Eventually, Beck read a classified intelligence report that convinced him that he and his co-worker on the trip were likely the victims of a covert attack that led to their illnesses - and that has prompted a highly unusual workers' compensation claim. Beck believes that while he and his colleague were sleeping in their hotel rooms, the hostile country, which he cannot name for security reasons, deployed a high-powered microwave weapon against them, damaging their nervous systems. For the last four years, Beck, 57, has been trying to persuade the Labor Department to award him 75 percent of his salary, or about $110,000 a year. But the Labor Department won't approve Beck's request without solid evidence that he was targeted. In Beck's case — short of obtaining proof from the hostile nation's spy service — he'd need the endorsement of the NSA, which has refused to provide it.

Note: To learn about how electromagnetic weapons can be used to torture anyone without legal recourse, listen to this revealing interview. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on intelligence agency corruption and non-lethal weapons.


NASA Could Have People Living on the Moon in 8 Years. And That's Just the Beginning
July 19, 2018, Time
http://time.com/5342743/nasa-moon-mars/

From December 1968 to December 1972, nine crews of human beings orbited and walked on and even drove on the face of the ancient moon. But as suddenly as the visits began, they stopped. The humans left and the quiet resumed. All of that, however, may soon change. For the first time in five decades, the U.S. - along with private-industry and international partners - has committed itself to returning to the moon, and to doing it on a defined timeline. In December 2017, President Trump signed the first of three Space Policy Directives, putting manned lunar exploration back at the top of the NASA agenda. Rather than the so-called flags-and-footprints model of lunar exploration - with short-term crews in throwaway vehicles landing on the surface ... the U.S. now hopes to establish a long-term presence on and around the moon. The centerpiece of the new system will be what NASA calls the Lunar Orbital Platform-Gateway, a mouthful of a name that hides a relatively simple idea. Gateway, as NASA sees it, will be a sort of mini space station in lunar orbit. Like the ... International Space Station, this one would be built with the help of more than a dozen other nations. Unlike the existing station, which consists of 15 habitable modules and a vast array of solar panels, Gateway will be comparatively small–a 75-ton assembly, consisting of just one or two habitable modules, each roughly the size of a school bus, plus a snap-on module for power and propulsion and two others that would serve as an air lock for spacewalking astronauts and a docking port for incoming vehicles.

Note: If the full text is unavailable at the link above, see this webpage.


Inspiring Articles


Looking for miracles? Here’s one for the ages
September 22, 2017, Star-Telegram (A leading newspaper of Dallas-Fort Worth)
https://www.star-telegram.com/opinion/opn-columns-blogs/richard-greene...

The real-life story of Dr. Charles Mully is beyond inspirational. This remarkable story unfolds on the big screen. It all happens in the East African country of Kenya. Mully was 6 when he was abandoned by his family. After somehow surviving into young adulthood, he finds his way to Nairobi and a job there. He finds remarkable success. Mully is set for a life of abundance. But he became somehow troubled that such was not his life’s purpose. After leaving his successful company behind, he moves his family back to the place from whence he came. They ... begin rescuing a few of the orphans who, like his own beginnings, spent their days drifting the dirt streets and trying to survive. Soon those few grew to more. When the confines of the villages limited the ongoing expansion of his mission, he moved into the wide-open spaces of the dry and barren East African tundra. There they built their own village but its future was limited by the lack of a water supply. While unable to sleep, Mully gets out of bed in the middle of the night and tells his wife that God is going to show him where water can be found. They proceed down a pathway then veer off ... and put a stake in the ground. Workers in the family start digging with shovels and picks and soon there is water so abundant a bridge is needed to cross the stream that results from the flow. Today they are growing crops in the desert and supplying food enough for the 10,000 members of the world’s largest family and beyond.

Note: Watch the inspiring trailer to the film on this great man.


Public bank that would boost pot shops, affordable housing could go before L.A. voters this fall
June 26, 2018, Los Angeles Times
http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-public-bank-vote-20180626-story...

The Los Angeles City Council is preparing to ask voters if they want to create a publicly owned bank, something no city or state in the United States has done in nearly a century. Council members voted Tuesday to start the process of putting a measure on the Nov. 6 ballot that would allow for the creation of such a bank by amending the city charter. The move is an early step in council President Herb Wesson’s plan to create a public bank, which he said could offer accounts to scores of city cannabis businesses that are shunned by commercial banks because of federal drug laws. It also could help finance affordable housing, he said. David Jette, legislative director of advocacy group Public Bank L.A., said putting the issue to a citywide vote could be a make-or-break moment for public banking, an idea that has gained steam since the financial crisis and lately seen an influx of support from the cannabis industry. Los Angeles, Oakland, San Francisco and the state of California are all in the process of studying whether they can or should start public banks, in part to serve cannabis businesses. For now, though, the U.S. has just one public bank: the Bank of North Dakota, established in 1919. “We’re cautiously ecstatic,” Jette said after Tuesday’s vote. “This will be a referendum on the idea of public banking. I think this is an existential vote for our entire national movement.”

Note: The measure was approved and will be on the November ballot for LA voters. For more, see this excellent webpage. Read a revealing article on how the Bank of North Dakota allowed the state to sail through the 2008 financial crisis while all other 49 states suffered. Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Organic solar cells set 'remarkable' energy record
August 9, 2018, BBC News
https://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-45132427

Chinese researchers have taken what they say is a major step forward for the development of a new generation of solar cells. Manufacturers have long used silicon to make solar panels because the material was the most efficient at converting sunlight into electricity. But organic photovoltaics, made from carbon and plastic, promise a cheaper way of generating electricity. This new study shows that organics can now be just as efficient as silicon. Organic photovoltaics (OPV) can be made of compounds that are dissolved in ink so they can be printed on thin rolls of plastic, they can bend or curve around structures or even be incorporated into clothing. Commercial solar photovoltaics usually covert 15-22% of sunlight, with a world record for a silicon cell of 27.3% reached in this summer in the UK. Organics have long lingered at around half this rate. In April researchers were able to reach 15% in tests. Now this new study pushes that beyond 17% with the authors saying that up to 25% is possible. This is important because according to estimates, with a 15% efficiency and a 20 year lifetime, organic solar cells could produce electricity at a cost of less than 7 cents per kilowatt-hour. In 2017, the average cost of electricity in the US was 10.5 cents per kilowatt-hour. Flexible, printed solar cells offer a wide range of possibilities. They can work indoors and they can be made semi-transparent, so they could be incorporated into windows and generate power during daylight.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Designing the Death of a Plastic
August 6, 2018, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/08/06/science/plastics-polymers-pollution.html

Most synthetic polymers - Greek for “many parts,” because they are long chains of many identical molecules - were not designed to disintegrate. They were meant to last as long as possible. But synthetic polymers became so popular [that] they’re at the root of the global burden of billions of tons of plastic waste. The environmental effects of plastic buildup and the declining popularity of plastics have helped to spur chemists on a quest to make new materials with two conflicting requirements: They must be durable, but degradable on command. In short, scientists are in search of polymers or plastics with a built-in self-destruct mechanism. The starting point requires picking polymers that are inherently unstable. Dismantling these polymers is sometimes called unzipping them, because once the polymers encounter a trigger ... their units fall off one after another until the polymers have completely switched back to small molecules. “We can have a big change in properties or complete degradation of the polymer just from one event,” says Elizabeth Gillies, a polymer chemist. On-demand, rapid disintegration gives unzipping polymers an edge ... she says, as biodegradation is often slow and difficult to control. These next-generation polymers could help mitigate pollution problems associated with plastic products. If the units were collected after unzipping to make new polymers, that would lead to chemical recycling. Most recycling done today simply involves melting the plastic and remolding it.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


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