Morning Brief

A thermosolar power plant in Chile

Renewable Energy Capacity Soars, Just Not Fast Enough

Another year of record renewable energy growth is unlikely to keep pace with demand at current rates.

A sign urges people to get the COVID-19 vaccine.

Omicron’s Travel Bans Rest on Shaky Logic

A travel ban seems like common sense, but the science is less clear.

A COVID-19 testing center sign at Heathrow Airport

We Don’t Know Much About Omicron

Countries have been quick to curtail travel from southern Africa over fears of a new highly transmissible variant.

U.S. President Joe Biden speaks at the South Court Auditorium at Eisenhower Executive Office Building on November 23, 2021 in Washington, D.C.

By Tapping Oil Reserves, U.S. Takes on OPEC

The coordinated release with other major oil consumers comes as the U.S. president faces pressure to bring down gasoline prices.

Rafael Grossi addresses the media.

Iran Readies for a Return to the Negotiating Table

Monday’s talks are the first under new Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi, and expectations for a breakthrough are already low.

Sudanese leaders hold up documents.

Sudan’s Hamdok Is Back in Power, but With How Much?

Hamdok’s decision has been criticized by pro-democracy groups as a capitulation to the country’s coup leaders.

Supporters of the Venezuelan ruling party

Venezuela’s Opposition Readies New Election Push

With other strategies worn out, opponents of President Nicolás Maduro are hoping to build power at the polls.

U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin welcomes Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky at the Pentagon in Arlington, Virginia, on Aug. 31.

U.S. Keeps Ukraine Close Amid Russian Build-Up

Pentagon chief Lloyd Austin meets with his Ukrainian counterpart on Thursday as Washington keeps its attention on Russia.

Nurses in a COVID-19 ward in Liberia

Can Pfizer’s New Pill Beat Back the Pandemic of the Poor?

As vaccination rates still lag in the developing world, a new oral treatment faces its own logistical hurdles.

Chilean presidential candidates pose.

Chile Prepares to Choose a New Direction

In a presidential vote this weekend, voters can choose between a product of the country’s protest movement or a Pinochet apologist.

U.S. President Joe Biden delivers remarks.

Biden and Xi Hold Virtual Summit Amid Taiwan Tensions

Expectations have been kept low before today’s meeting, which is likely to discuss “guardrails” for the U.S.-China relationship.

French President Emmanuel Macron looks at Libya's interim Prime Minister Abdul Hamid Dbeibah

Will World Powers Rubber-Stamp Libya’s Tainted Election?

Backers of Libya’s factions meet in Paris today to affirm their support for what is likely to become a messy election period.

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba hold a news conference.

What’s Behind Russia’s Military Buildup Near Ukraine?

Only the Kremlin knows for sure, but any hostile action risks upsetting a recent thaw in U.S.-Russian relations.

French far-right media pundit Éric Zemmour sits on a set.

Zemmour Rises in French Polls

The far-right pundit has jumped to second place in polls ahead of April’s French presidential election.

Migrants at the Belarusian-Polish border

EU Condemns Belarus for Aiding Migrant Surge

Hundreds of migrants have set up camp on Belarus’s border with Poland, hoping for passage into the European Union.

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