Haitian police fired into a group of protesters in Port-au-Prince yesterday, killing a journalist and wounding two others. The move came after thousands of Haitian factory workers launched a new strike to demand higher wages than those the prime minister announced earlier this week. Earlier, police had fired tear gas as protesters threw rocks at them and used trucks to block a main road near the international airport in Port-au-Prince, reports the Associated Press.
- As the United States faces growing restrictions on abortion, feminist activists in Latin America are increasingly relying on one another for legal strategy, organizing tactics and inspiration, reports the New York Times. Colombian activist drew on tactics deployed by fellows in Mexico, Argentina and Chile in their campaign that led to the decriminalization of abortion this week. (See Tuesday's post)
- Uncontrollable wildfires are intensifying with the rise in greenhouse gas emissions, according to a new report by the United Nations Environment Program. (Washington Post)
- A Latin American energy revolution will take commitment on behalf of the private sector and partnership with the public sector in pursuing bold policy strategies and revising institutional frameworks, argue Luisa Palacios and Mauricio Cárdenas in Americas Quarterly.
- Climate change is largely responsible for the deadly extreme weather events that have struck Brazil recently — first intense droughts, then punishing rains, and now flooding from north to south that has left hundreds dead. Mudslides that killed over 180 people in Petróplis last week also show how defenseless the country's favelas will be in a new era of destabilizing climate change, reports the Washington Post.
- Venezuela's oil industry is mounting an unlikely comeback based on a new formula: importing light-oil from Iran to help it thin out its thick crude, working with local contractors to keep the oil flowing and selling it to China through middlemen -- with crude prices spiking, the recovery comes at an opportune time, reports Bloomberg.
- Gas flaring has dramatically increased in Mexico under the administration of President Andrés Manuel López Obrador, according to NASA satellite images of flare sites across the country, reports Reuters. The new data suggests that in spite of signing an international pledge to reduce methane emissions, Mexico is moving in the opposite direction from a global push to rapidly reduce greenhouse gas production.
- López Obrador said yesterday that U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken must be misinformed about threats facing journalists in Mexico, reacting to a message from the U.S. official calling for accountability for assassinated reporters. He suggested that perhaps Blinken received bad information from other U.S. agencies, mentioning the CIA, FBI and Drug Enforcement Administration, reports the Associated Press. (See yesterday's post.)
- The Cuban sugar industry is heading towards its worst season ever, reports Reuters.
- Dominican Republic President Luis Abinader's popularity remains high. In a new poll 70 percent of respondents said they approve of Abinader, while only 24 percent disapprove. Abinader’s perceived strong stance on security and migration are likely giving him a boost, in addition to the country's strong economic recovery from the pandemic, according to the Latin America Risk Report.
- The Caribbean remains vulnerable to Covid-19, even as deaths have dropped in the Americas for the first time since the omicron variant took hold, according to the World Health Organization. Vaccination rates are continuing to lag in many countries and territories, and a surge in new cases is leading to increases in hospital admissions and deaths, said Dr. Carissa Etienne, the director of the WHO’s Pan American Health Organization. (Miami Herald)
- The warning comes as several governments consider relaxing COVID-19 measures after placing limits on funeral attendance and large indoor gatherings like concerts, and as others consider resuming Carnival festivals this year. (Miami Herald)