Skip to main content

tv   PBS News Hour  PBS  August 29, 2019 6:00pm-7:00pm PDT

6:00 pm
captioning sponsored by newshour productions, llc >> woodruf good evening. i'm judy woodruff. on the newshour tonight: the winds er the water. the u.s. mainland rushes to preparas hurricane dorian picks up speed over the atlantic. then, on the ground in el salvador. the u.s. homeland security chief takes the fight over immigration to central america, while the trump administration attempts to rewrite the rules ofci zenship. and, jump starting america. how investing in scientific research can revive struggling cities all over the country. >> the existing hubs on the west coast and east coast have become rather crowded, extremely expensive, actually quite difficult places to do business. what we really need is growth
6:01 pm
that as in the past is much acre widely sprss the country. >> woodruff: all that and more t ononight's pbs newshour. >> major funding for the pbs newshour has been provided by: life well-planned. learn more at raymondjames.com. >> bab ll. a languarning app that uses speech recognition technology and teaches real-life conversations. >> and by the alfred p. sloan foundation. supporting science, technology, and improved economic performance and financial
6:02 pm
literacy in the 21st c.>> argie corporation of new york. supporting innovations in education, democratic engagement, and the advancement of international peace and security. at carnegie.org. >> and with the ongoing support of these institutions: and individuals.hi >>program was made possible by the corporation for public broadcasting.tr and by cutions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. >> woodruff: millions of people along florida's atlantic coast are watching and waiting tonit, as hurricane dorian grows into a major menace. the national hurricane center
6:03 pm
says the storm could be a category 4 storm, with winds of 130 miles an hour, by the time it hits on monday. today, lines of shoppers waited outside supply stores, preparing for a nse labor day weeken governor ron desantis said it's the smart move. >> you saw long lines for gas, people going into the grocery store to get water. we don't want to see people wait in line.e. but people are heeding the call to just be prepared. we can't tell you exactly where this thing is going to go right now.it been kind of here and there, not been a very consistent path in some respts. but nevertheless, be prepared. >> woodruff: desantis also declared an emergency for the entire state. and, president trump said he is canceling a planned trip to poland to keep an eye on the storm. we'll hear from the national summary.e center after the news the u.s. justice department'sl inspector geneys former f.b.i. director james comey
6:04 pm
mishandled memos of conversations wi preside trum today's report found comey broke f.b.i. rules by joranging for a nalist to see one memo. the report states that "comey set a dangerous example" by using sensitive information tod bublic pressure. it also found that none of the information was classified. e juste department had already declined to prosecute. the u.s. environmental protection agency called today for revoking obama-era rules on methane leaks at oil and gas drilling sites. the proposal would exempt some companies from monitoring leaks of the gas that contributes to we'll look at the details, later in the program. in britain, resistance is mounting to prime minister boris johnson's move to suspend parliament before the brexit deadline of october 31st. day, protests, legal challenges and petition drives gathered steam.op
6:05 pm
the position labour party leader jeremy corbyn vowed to fight the move when parliament ss.urns from its summer re >> we will be back in parliament on tuesday to challenge boris johnson on what i thin smash-and-grab raid against our democracy, where he's trying to suspend parliament in to prevent a serious scussion and a serious debate, tonorevent a eal brexit. >> woodruff: by suspending parliament, joson gives opponents little time to prevent britain from leaving the european union without a formal agreement. china sent fresh troops into hong kong today, calling it a "routine rotation." state television showed dozens of soldiers arriving in hong kong overnight, and tanks rolling through otherwise empty streets. the deployment also raised fears about a possible crackdown on pro-democracy protesters. hardliners in coloia's main rebel group, the farc, issued a new ca to arms today.
6:06 pm
it was a blow to a three-year- old accord that ended decades of fighting. in an online video, the rebels accused the government of failing to live up to the peace agreement. >> ( translated ): when we): signed the agreement, we did it with the conviction that it was possible to change the lives of the humb and the dispossesse but the state has not fulfilled even the most important of the obligations. at is, to guarantee the life of its citizens and partic tarly to preveir murder for political reasons. >> woodruff: colombia's president offered a reward of nearly $1 million for the leader of the hardliners. back in this country, there's word that the mumps has swept through crowded migrant 12 months.facilities in the last the centers for disease control and prevention says mumps apssared in 57 facilities ac 19 states. nearly 900 migrants and more than 30 staffers came down with the illness. top federal health oicials issued a national warning today
6:07 pm
about marijuana use by teenagers and pregnant women and the ris to developing brains. more and more states and cities have legalized marijuana for medical or recreational use. but surgeon general jerome adams alonwith health and human services secretary alex azar said the drug dangerous. >> not enough people know that today's marijuana is f more potent than in day's past. the amount of t.h.c., the component responsible for euphoria and intoxication but for also most of marijuana's documented harms has increased few decades.fold in the last or, as i like to say, this ain't your mother's marijuana. >> woodruff: the federal s governmell classifies marijuana as a controlled substance. britain has found five newd genetic vafoants that may be linked to same-sex sexual behavior.he but,esearchers say there may be thousands more, and they also reaffirm that genes alone
6:08 pm
do not determine whether someone will be gay or lesbian. the study involved half a tion people in the larg project of its kind. alabama governor kay ivey apologized today for wearingng blackface du college skit 50 years ago. her then-fiance had described the episode in a clege radio r interview. ivey said today she does not remember the skit but does not deny it, either. and, the first-term rean said, "that is not who i am today." an on wall street: stocks rose on hopes for progress in upcoming u.s.-china trade talks. the dow jones industrial average gained 326 pois to close at 26,362. the nasdaq rose 116 points, and the s&p-500 added 36. still to come on the newshour: preparing for landfall as hurricane dorian churns across the atlantic. on the ground in el salvador
6:09 pm
while the white house hardens its stance on citizenship. the trump administration moves to roll back k regulations for monitoring natural gas. and much more. >> woodruff: hurricane dorian is threatening bear bywn on florid monday, prompting residents there to start st,king up on bottled water gas and other supplies. but the category hurricane's precise path is hard to predict. eered towards the virgin islands, drenching them with heavy rain and whipping winds, but then largely missed puerto rico.s ken grahame director of the national hurricane center in miami, and joins us for an update. ken graham, welcome back to the newshour. first of all, tell us what you know right now about dorian.
6:10 pm
>> every indication is she continues to get strger. we're studying this 24 hours a day. getting stronger is exactly whar forecasting, continuing to get stronger with time. there's a lot of warm water, no a lot of sheer, and not a lot of interaction with terrain, as well. so it's goingo keep getting stronger.fo we'recasting to become a major hurricane, even a category 4 st13rengthmph as we approach the florida coast. so a big event. a lot of uncertainty in the forecast. that center could be anywhe i that cone. >> woodruff: and ken, you say a lot of utancty. what is going to determine the exact path and the strength of this storm? >> so many factors going on here inch this case we have this ridge of high presse. it's out here. it almost acts like a bubble. so when this storm movesi forward, it that bubble. so the stronger that high prsure is, then we're going to have a quicker turn if it's a little waker, it's going to wait a little bit longer, and that will be the northern track.
6:11 pm
is we're real trying to understand how strong that is. that's why we're seeing the idels change a little bt, and that's why we have a cone. because with that uncertainty, it could be anywhere in there. so the message is anyone along o florida, along the coast, and also inland has ready. >> woodruff: do you have a sense of when we're going to know better where it's hitting? >> yos u know, i think really wn we start seeing that turn.i ink 24 -- this is one of those ituations as wsee it move northwest, we see it turn more toward the northwest. extrapolate from there.an we'll have a better idea. in the next few days i think we'll have a better handle on it. but either way new york matter ceere the track goes new york matter where thter, is florida will be impacted by rain, storm surge, the winds, just a big impact of that. >> woodruff: so the advice then to people who live awhere in that bubble area you have at the end i to d what? >> it is to be ready. if you think about it, it's interesting, we have otted the
6:12 pm
arrival of tropical storm force winds. no matter the exact track new york mattered whe the center is, you'll start seeing tropical storm force winds reach the hereorida. s astline. probably late on sunday, by 8:00 p.m. or so moving on shore some the winds are coming, the rain is coming, the storm surge isng co so be prepared and listen for the latest information, and especially listen to those loca officials. >> woodruff: well, we'll certainly do everything we can to get the word out. ken graham with the nationaat hurricane center, thank you. >> you bet. >> woodruff: the actingf: secretary of homeland security, kevin mcaleenan, is on a three- day trip to central america to talk about migration and border security with leaders in el salvador. r amna nawaz is along wi mcaleen on this visit, and joins me now from san salvador, the capital.
6:13 pm
amna, hello. this is mcaleenan's second trip to el salrodor in this . what are they looking to accomplish? >> nawaz: judy, basically secretary mcaleenan is trying the formalize some of those past negotiations he's been having with leaders in the area. it's not jut el salvador. he's been meeting with leaders in gotlieb and -- guatemala and honduras. yesterday they signed a letter of int'sent. ot a formal deal oror agreement, but what it does do is broadly lay out four areas both el salvador and the u.s.s can move forward to reduce those may immigration numbers. u.s. officials laid them ou ouro us, border security, economic instment, asylum capacity and the overall goal goal is to reduce the number of peopleos looking to cs the u.s. southern border. i asked secretary mca aleenan, when you're working toward that look like? what does success
6:14 pm
what is the threshold you're working toward. s here's what hd in response? >> the rezaire for a securan well-mannered border. we want to return to numbers so we don't see families an children responding to weaknesses in the legal or the policy objectives the president is trying te counter, forced migration where it's either due security concerns ork f economic opportunity. >> nawaz: secta mcaleenan went on to say the primary driver they've seen specifically among people from el sell economics. judy, what we have heard from folks n re on the ground wheit comes to where they're putting their energy and their effort right now, economic investment seems to be one of the main areas of u.s. focus. >> woodruff: is there any indication th these deals will work? >> nawaz: judy, officials are keen to tell us abut the numbers they've already seen from here in el salvathr. here's wha told us yesterday. the number of salvadorans
6:15 pm
crng the boarder in ma was 16,000 inch august they say they got that number down to 6,000. that's something they hold up as a sign of success, that a lot oo these ts and a lot of these conversations are working. it's worth pointing out that overall when it comes to southern u.s. border crossings, those numbers have gone down. in july, in fact, those total numbers were below 100,000 for the first time in about five months. n know that detention numbers have gone down. customs have gone down. overall because of weather, because of historical trends, but also largelyecause of a number of the steps the trump administration has been taking to ty to try to limit the number of people croing the border, those numbers have been going down. >> woodruff: amna, we noelle does have major problems with violence, especially with angard .h what did the president of el salvador have to say about that. >> nawaz: obviously addressing those homicide rates and the violence levels here. it's been a priority no just
6:16 pm
for this president, president muhammad who just came into power a w months ago. but for previous administration, as well. it's worthoting they have seen those numbers going down. he's implemented more heavy handed law enforcement tactics to addss that gang violence. flu are also things that the president wants to see from then u.s.ddition to security help, things that weren't necessarily mentioned by u.s. ofcials. i asked the president directly, when you're in these sconversations with the u what is it you're asking for when the u.s. is asking for your cooperation to stemflow of people coming from el salvador. he listed a few things includino kind of permanent status for salvadorans in the u.s., many who have back-up protectio or cps protection. he wanted to lower the state department travel warning from a 3 to a 2 for el salvador, which he tldnks wou encourage tourism, and he also said he would much rather hae economic investment in some form rather nomic aid,nd of
6:17 pm
judy. >> woodruff: amna nawaz reporting from san salvador, the capital of el salvador. thanks. >> woodruff: it is a shift in the process of determining who can be a u.s. citizen. the latest move on immigration by the trump administratioat first sparked confusion and outrage yesterday.ru th is smaller in scope than initially thought, but still says some childr born to americans living abroad working for the u.s. military or as diplomats will no longer automatically be u.s. citizens. we want to take time now to clarify the move and look at the administration's broader strategy on immigration with ken cuccinelli. he is the acting director of the u.s. citizenship and immigration services and he joins me now. thank you for being here. >> judy, good to be with you.
6:18 pm
>> woodruff: so a lot of changes. they've been coming fast and furious in the field of immieeation and as we have n listening to all -- nominee inze cihip and immigration. what i want to ask you about this new policy, we just learned about it this week. it ends automatic citizenship r -- >> no. nope. >> woodruff: it ends automatic citizenship -- >> new york it doesn't. >> woodruff: can i te it and you can correct it if you disagree, but ends automatic citizenship for some children born to s. citizens whare stationed abroad either working for the u.s. government as diplomats or the military?? why this mo >> well, first of all, theen statabout who becomes a citizen at birth is not correct. l the same people still become citizens at birth. this is -- for your viewers, this is all about people outside the united states. some people have said, oh, this is birthright citizenship. it has nothing to do with being born in the u.s. it is r people who are born outside the united states who are not u.s. citizens when they
6:19 pm
are born. and already. that was ue before or after. >> woodruff: or their parents. >> no, not necsarily. not necessarily. hnd the only thing that has changed here is forms they have to fill out, the process they have to go through to get that child to be u.s. citizen. that is it. we didn't change a sinrgle peson who would or could become a u.s. citizen. >> woodruff: but whha do tt? >> that's an excellent question. because the dartment of state obviously also issues travel documents. we issue various visas and other documents. and u.s.c.i.s., the agency i lead, was not conforming to the law. ngere is a very specific thi that was wrong. let me finish, please. so somebody could go through the process we have now and show up to get passport to travel home for their child a they wouldn't get passport. the state department wouldn't recogne them as a citizen because what we were doing
6:20 pm
didn comply with the law. so we've brought ourselves in compliance with the law and all the same people nill become citizens. >> woodruff: the bottom line is it makes it somewhat moret. diffic >> no. nope. i checked this ear!a it doesn't even takne loger. there's still paperwork, but it's different paperufrk. >> woo so you're saying this has all been a lot of fuss >> yes.thi? obviously could have communicated this a lot better, but it is almt nothing. in effect, in paperwork only, and we came to that number by looking back through how many t people fell inhis category in previous years. >> woodruff: all right. well, we appreciate having that clarification from you. >> i appreciate you letting me clarify. >> woodruff: i do want to ask you about some other changes. in the last few days the administration has changed the molicy as we understand it around how imigrants with dire health conditions are treated. previously they were granted action, which is specialerred
6:21 pm
statushat allows them to remainn the country ally, receive medicaid if necessary, and work while they getic med treatment. thousands of people who haveav serious health condition, whether cancer, cstic fibrosis, are subject to being -- to losing theirbility to stay. >> right. and we have a b visa, a tourist visa which can can so be ud for medical treatment for people here. no one gets deferred action who is here legally. >> woodruff: they're here undo. ed.e >> right they're here illegally. so ice is the enforcement agency some thiis u.s.c.i.system, we're not a law enforcement agency, some years ago started issuing def ranses, which isn't appropriate for us.
6:22 pm
that's left for ice to do, and it only happens once people are removeddable from the country. >> woodruff: but you're king, let me just point out, you're asking people who are in this situation wiic a very k family member to turn to an enforcement agency to let them know that they are here in undocumented status, and let me bring it to a personal level. we saw the story of a mothe from honduras, with a 16-year-old son with cystic fibrosis, who is being treated in boston, his older sister hase y died of cystic fibrosis. his mother says if he can't conn this trea he will die. so what's the reason for squeezing people in these circumstances? >> well, obviously this family is not gerd, swriewdy. what was going on before and now raised expectations, it's raised yours others was not consistent with the law. it was a law that ss on a case-by-case basis this can beca
6:23 pm
granted. it was granted across the board. so now it will be granted on a case-by-case basis. a humanitarian basis basis the grant the sorts of relief. so it castill be granted to let's remember, these peoplebut also can get b visas and come here legally to do all of these things. >> woodruff: quickly, again, it's making it harder them to do that. only in the sense they now have tgo do something. >> woodruff: another new rule enacted under your agency, the under which the government will deny green cards to legal u.s. residents ansa holders use government benefits liketo food stamps, medicaid, housing assistance. my question is: how does this comport with america's long history of welcoming, i mean, you go back to huddledmasses yearning to be free. are you now saying america doesn't want people who need any help? >> that's an e qcelleestion,
6:24 pm
judy. under federal law, all the way back to 1882, almost 140 years, we have required people comin to this country to meet these sorts of standards, to be self-sufficient, and the americaneople want immigrantim who are self-sufficient. that means that won't go on these sorts of welfare programs. and it iln't all fare programs and even medicaid is only for adults, i isn't for people under 21 and so forth, but that's a lotaing requirement of american law, and it's a core value. b >> woodruf is it a core value that goes back to the founding of this country? >> itoes back to 1645 in massachusetts. >> woodruff: but peple were welcomed into this country who were, again, your huddled masses yearning to be free. peopleame to this country with nothing at all. >> and tens of thousands of them were turned backne as expected b be c charges. and that is -- that has long
6:25 pm
been part of the law, the law we passed this rule for was implemented on a strong bipartisan basis in 1996 and signed by bill clinto >> woodruff: but the point of it appears to be to squeeze the definition of who can be an american. is that what you and the administrati are trying to do? my question is: you're clearly trying to make it harder to become a u.s. citizen. >> for people who can't support themselves in america. who would go on welfare in the future. >> woodruff: and wy are they not welcome? >> for the same reasons you referred to the american tradition. this is straight out of american tradition, both legally andiistorically, this the most generous and welcoming nation in the history othe world. >> woodruff: even with this new definition? >> weayhave alwexpected people to stand on their own two feet and be self-sufficient. we are nothe welfare provider for the world. and this is just continuing that tradition.
6:26 pm
>> woodruff:ut again, andfo rgive me if i'm repeating b myself, in tinning this was a country that welcomed eeople of all circumstances, th poorest people on the planet were welcome to come to this country. e topoor people can still com this country, and when you look sh -- we focused on the welfare benefits in ourrt discussion here. it's one factor among many. and it is always only o factor among many. so leta 's takuly impoverished folks who might -- who have used weare benefits up to the time they're considered for that green card. please let me just finish, but during that time theyal havso gotten a plumbing assert pi caigs. ey have a job. those are other factors.av theygotten education they didn't have before. all of those can offset the use of welfare benefits. the point is that they can stana on their own in the future as they live here long term with us as fellow americans. >> woodruff: are y saying the ideal portrait of an
6:27 pm
american is different from what it was? >> no. excellent question. you now, it has been... i'm from i assume we'rea littleg of 1607 different from then, but for 140 years the american people hav strongly supported and had in law and we do today the requirement that the people we welcome here will stand on their own and be self-sufficient. self-sufficient pi is one of those core valthueat kes america inning. >> woodruff: i'm sure many americans do that diferently. they still see this country as place with open armo >> ioo. and this isn't closing our arm, but it is expect people carry their own weight and not us to carry them as fellow for americans or legal permanent residents, which is what a green card is. >> woodruff: ken cuccinelli, acting director of the u.s.tici zenship and immigration service. >> judy, good to be with you.
6:28 pm
>> wdruff: it was widely reported that the trump $250 million in military assistance to ukraine as part of its overall efforts tail foreign aid. mr. trump began supplyin weapons to ukraine two years ago in itsight against russian- backed separatists. the war there is now in itsxt year, with thousands dead and no signs of an end in sight. ncd with no u.s. troop pre anywhere near the front lines, some american citizens have decided to go and fight anyway. from those front lines, special correspondent simon ostrovsky reports. >> reporter: damien rodriguez is an american citizen from the bronx with a habit of fighting in wars that many would say are
6:29 pm
not his own. >> my passionois to volunteer for different militaries, militias, and help defend their land. >> reporter: in 2015, damien traveled to syria. >> the isis videos that were coming out-- decapitating people, burning people alive, selling women-- i felt like i d had something, and our government wasn't doing enough. and i heard that people were out there helping and decided to go out there and helpha >> reporter: hno military experience. the only branch he'd served in was a bank branch in delaware. >> i dealt with all the automatecash transactions, a lot of spreadsheets, excel. not for me, i guess. >> reporter: today, a long way from the spreadsheets, fighting an enemy even more formable than isis orth arithmete russian military. last year, damien joined the marine corps of ukraine.
6:30 pm
we're in a trench on a hill thhe's overlooking some of t russian-backed forces' positions. the reason damien's un's beenre sent here is because they're to provide covering fire for another ukrainian unit that'sg huntinti-tank crews that have been harassing ukrainian vehicles lately. this machine gun nest overlooks the positions of the russian military and their local separatist allies who want to wrest control of eastern ukraine from the central government in kiev.o, >> go,o, go, go, go, go! >> reporter: it's a war that's claimed the lives of some 13,000 people since russia's annexation of crimea in 2014. and aside from the occasional foreign volunteer, ukraine, its troops to america's wars around the world, has had to wage this fight on its own. well, almost. damien came here not just
6:31 pm
without the blessing of his government, but also without his family's. he left his girlfriend and two sons behind in the united states. >> that didn't go over too well. she was extremely upset, couldn't understand why i would ivve up my family. she's seen it asg up my familyecause, of course, thers a possibility of death. >> reporter: "extremely upset" is putting it lightl in the months leading up to his departure to syriadamien's ex sued him for withdrawing money from a joint account. and en he returned in 2017, he was arrested for missing thousands of dollars in child support payments. >> she kind of basically told me sney want me out of their life. at that time, i in a good state of mind. i had just camback from syria. >> reporter: are you saying that you lost custody oyo son? >> yeah. ( explosion )>> eporter: so, the united
6:32 pm
states... the united stas has sent $1.5 billion of military aid to uksine, but there are no bo on the ground. that $1.5 billion goes to weapons, equipment and trainingi the only amecan servicemen r re are in a facility neae polish border, over 800 miles west of the frontlin lih the canadian and britis soldiers w are also in ukraine, they're proving training at a safe distance from the violence.ds there's hundf other americans far away from the frontlines in a much safer environment. what does it feeoflike to be one he only ones actually on the front line in the only active war in europe? >> last thing we need another war. if you have more boots here, that means russia's going to have more boots over there. and yoknow, do you really want this to be a hug you know,no possibly world war, you know? >> reporter: one of his
6:33 pm
commanding officers tells us he's grateful for the foreign fighters from the u., great britain and estonia that have joined this unit. how did you feel when the foreigners first jned your battalion? >> we know the reason why we are here, ukrainians, because it's our land, we defend it. but why foreign guys come here? we didn't... these guys, very good guys. they're very patriotic. one of them want to take ukrainian citizenship now because our laws allow to do wiat. >> reporter: fol in the footsteps of the u.s., ukraine tchanged its laws to make possible for foreigners serving in the military to receive citizenship.not everyone plans , but the defense ministry saysth there are currently about 130 foreigners serseng, including ral americans. >> someone who proves that he wants to be ukrainian citizen and he also has the good record
6:34 pm
of fighting for this country, well, he also has the privilege to be granted ukrainian citizenship. >> reporter: the reforms are seen as part of an efforto redirect internationals away erom volunteer battalions that were not fully uhe defense ministry's control-- groups like the azov battalion, which has recruited many oits fighters from the ranks of the far right and has ties to orgazations that participated in the 2017 white nationalist rally in charlottesville. >> that's why you need somehow to regulate these vors or foreign fighters or whoever is fighting on your side. soit was impossible to pla military operations becausebevo nteers never accepted your orders, and they did their own military operations. >> reporter: so, what about the equipment provided with u.s. tax some of it has apparently filtered down to the troops. >> we were issued night vision. i actually just used it the
6:35 pm
other night, last night. >> reporter: but there is a desperate shortage of one thing on these front lines: safe armored vehicles. in this sector, we saw none of e humvees america handed over wi much pomp at this ceremony in 2015. we were told there weren't enou to go around. so, for the most part, ukrainian marines use either theng soviet-era troop carriers they call "steel coffins" or simply the ukrainian military improvises, and damien is his unit's pilot. >> so, this video actually shows me actually using the drone as a weapon. >> reporter: whoa! there it goes! and he runs back into the dugout. >> we were targeting the vehicle. we had no clue who was in the vehicle. it just so happened to be one of the big commanders of that battalion. >> reporter: anyone can order this quadcopter from amazon for arou $1,500, but it has one deadly handmade modification. >> just has an attachment here to drop bombs.
6:36 pm
stuff this plastic explosives into the tube, set a detonator inside, and, once it hits the detonator, explodes. get a bunch of nice little screws inside there. >> reporter: should an american like you really be here fighting another country's war? >> our government actually suppts ukraine, very much so. i would never go against my counriy's wishes. was a bit on the line. when i got back, guys from, like, homeland security and even f.b.i. guys. they were like, l "oh, thank you very much," you know? i share a room with another guyr for the mess. >> reporter: for damien, being out here on the front lines,it despthe constant dangers, things somehow seem easier and more straightforward than the life he abandoned in the u.s. >> don't get me wrong. i love america, i love my home and my family.
6:37 pm
but ukraine is growing on me, and i really respect the people, especially the people in the military. >> reporter: few americans have dared openly fight against russia in its r in ukraine, but, if kiev continues welcoming foreign fiters, america and other western countries may get more boots on the ground tn they ever bargained for. for the pbs newshour, i'm simon ostrovsky on the frontlines in eastern ukraine. in an effort to boost oil and natural gas production, the trump administration is planning to roll back rules regarng the rele greenhouse gas methane. as william brangham reports, this is the latest move to dial ck environmental rules put in
6:38 pm
place by the obama >> brangham: that't, judy. these rules were first put in place because methane is one of the most potent greenhouse t gasses, maes more potent than carbon dioxide at trapping heat in the atmosphere. when oil and gas is produced and shipped and stored, of methane leaks out, which then makes climate change worse. the enviroental protection agency now argues those rules about limiting methane leaks are illegal, too costland that they don't do much to protect the climat timothy puko of the "wall streer journal" broke the story of this proposed change and he welcome to news hour. >> brangham: so environmental groups, a lot of leading democrats are furious about this proposed change. what are they arguing? >> they're arguing that becausea of climatenge that we really need these rules. m methane, as yotion, is incredibly potent. leading industrial source of it. they were intended to be part of a ree-pronged attack from the obama administratn, take care take care of emissions from
6:39 pm
power plants or limit them, and then the oil and gas sctor was next. that was seen as the other big emilter that could use some tightning up. >> brangham: the rules as they were written by the obama administration required te industdo what about methane leaks? >> more inspection, adding newer technology to primarily the issue was contain these leak make sure you knw when leaks happen, so monitorg systems, and then have better technology there to make sure that gasdo n't escape. >> brangham: i touched on the sort of litany of rationale the trump administration has put forward to why they wanto get rid of these rules. what is their position on this. >> climate one, not a priority certainly president trump has made his feelings on that very clear, and that s eowered a lot of people within the administration, not just theh e.p.a., but department, too, who feel that the prior administration had gone too far, had used the clean air act to
6:40 pm
address climate in ways it was never intended to be used. >> brangham: is there evidence that these rules actually did what they were intended to do? meaning if we know meth and that is a problem, we don't want to let it leak out, did these rules stop those lks? >> technology would certainly help?cr se inspections would certainly help. i think the big question is what's reasonable? and the oil and gas industry felt that in many cases these rules were not reasonable, thart they asked too much, that they ryght be restrictive, they might prevent the indurom innovating and creating more effective technology.ultimatelyw the answer to your question because like many climate policies in the obama administration, this was in limbo. it was not somethi that had taken effect. they did not finalize it until 2016. there were court challges and ultimately the trump administration takes over and they have their own ideas. so that basically there was a transitioning happening before those rules could evereally
6:41 pm
make an impact.>> rangham: one of the most interesting things in your reporting was that this wasn't a unanimous industry opposion to these rules. big companies wanted to keep them in place, smaller. explain why that occurred. >> the industry is really divided. the rger companies that have moreapital to address these things have quite tranically in many case ian advantaf there are more regulations governing the industry. but even beyond that, they'rehe realizing,have realized, they have made giant indvestmens that are climate related into natural gas in particular. it's a cleaner fuel, as long as you are not leaking it, a ylong are not putting raw methane into the atosphere. natural gas burns clean than certainly coal and oil and it producesany fewer emissions. and so, you know, they have been able to market natal gas to governments and utilities all over the world. ge's a huge thing, a hu business for them. the fear is that if therere
6:42 pm
not strong government relations to regulate that, that bad actors can take over r when times get tough and prices are lower, there isn't as much of a profit and -- motive for the industry to invest on the technologies they need to capture this stuff some exxon, shell, b.p they're looking at it and saying, we're trying sell this natural gas around the worlt we wvernments to believer they can transition to it as a cleaner fuel. we don't want the run the risk that that gets undermined. we have to have a cost come in from the outside to make sure that everyone is playing by the same rules and keeping natural gas clean. >> braham: such an interesting dichotomy in the industry. >> if i could say, you see that a gt. there are ivides right now on all sorts of issues between the large companies,he global major, and then the mid-sized and smaller companies.llmp those ies have less capital to spend. they want to produce and produce and produce. they have been most successful in the other shale places. they also havthe ear of ts
6:43 pm
administration. so in many cases, they're there. they're saying, no, our friends in the white house, make sure the governments not in our way, that we're not overburdened by cost and by rules we have to follow, and they're promising that they'll police themselves and keep the drilling boom going full tilt. >> brangham: lastly, what are next steps here. i know these don't go into effect right away. and legal challenges, what are you saying? >> absolutely. even before we get legal challenges, 60 days of publicmm cots. it will have to come back for administrative review. we're aiming to get that finished and get that finalized by 2020. it's been difficult for the administration the meet time lines like that. even if they were t geten tis finished, while president trump is still in office, as you elud to, there ing to be lawsuits. the environmentalm munity wants tight regulations related to climate. they want climate issues to be addressed. they have launched a -- legal
6:44 pm
attacks on every rollback like this the administration has done. those are all still in the urts. this one is likely to play out in the courts if we get there. >> brangham: timothy puko o the "wall street journal," great reporting. thank you. >> thank you. >> woodruff: one of the major concerns abo the economy is whether there's enough real growth compared to the past. and whether that growth can be spread out more evenly to areas that need it. our economics correspondent paul solman has a look at a new call to spur that growth through major government investments in science and technology. the idea: spread that investment, capital and potential jobs to cities in real need. it's the focus otonight'sak "mg sense" report. >> so, these are roombas, and this is the first roomba. >> reporter: at irobot outside boston, the flagship product is on prominent display.
6:45 pm
>> this is the f-9. and so, this is like a monster. the eyes look left and right. that flopped.nearby, products >> if that doesn't creep out your child, then nothing will.wo we wering on robots that down into oil wells. we were working on robot toys. we were working on robots that would cln industrial buildings. >> reporter: and who's buyingin these ? >> no one was buying them. >> reporter: irobot now boasts 1,000-plus employees in the u.s. t, for years after its founding in 1990... >> irobot-- i say, nobly-- we didn't take investment until year eight. what i'm really sayi is, we couldn't get investment from a third party until year eight of our existence. reporter: what kept them alive? >> irobot wouldn't exist without government contracts. >> reporter: starting with small contracts in the mid '90s to research and develop military robots, culminating in a contract to build thousands of so-called packbots at $120,000
6:46 pm
inch, to search out weapon afghanistan and iraq. >> this used to be a robot. >> reporter: and this is debris? >> yeah, that's pacbot 129, or what's left of him. these guys literally have saved thousands of lives over in afghanistan and iraq.ep >>ter: and with the money and technology it earned on packbot, irobot launched a consumer business. 17 years later... >> 25 million robots sold.>> about a quarter of the money spent on vacuum clears is now spent on robot vacuum cleaners. >> reporter: due to government research and dev.opment spendi >> when those big breakthroughs occur, you create a lot of good new jobs.w >> reporter: and ilionly we spen we used to, say and jonathan grubehe u.s.ohnson economy would be bigger, fairer, better braced for the future. >> by the mid 1960s, we were spending 2% out of our entire economy, one in every $50, on
6:47 pm
public r&d investments. and that paid off in creating enormous new sectors of the omy. remember what was the first microwave called? ar these amana radar range microwave ovens have cookmatic power shift. >> the "radar range" because it came with the technology that was used to develop the radar.>> peed, for informed decisions. >> digital electronic compers come entirely out of this big post-war r&d government-led effort. modern pharmaceuticals, jet engines, civil aviation. >> liftoff. we have a liftoff. >> and, of course, w space program. big, positive, lasting effects across the entire economy. >> reporter: this was the norm for half a century. but nowadays, says gruber... >> we've gone from 2% of g.d.p. to 0.7% percent of g.d.p. and importantly, from by far the highest in the world to tenth in the world. >> rorter: theop five: austria, denmark, finland, korea and switzerland. thus, gruber and johnson's miion: "jump starting america"-- the name of their new spending.toring government&d
6:48 pm
>> we want more growth. we want more good jobs >> reporter: and they're on e stump, making the case across the country. but not for spending justre anyw >> hello, rochester. it's great to be back. eporter: they want to ju start r&d hubs in areas that don't have them. >> people lk about a rural- urban issue in america. it's not really that. it's sort of areuperstar city- of america phenomenon. >> the existing hubs on the west coast and east coast have rather crowded, extremely expensive, actually quite difficult places tdo business. what we really need is growth more widely spreads thes much country. >> reporter: and that's why they and we were in rochester, new york, which popped out number one on their list of 102 potential new r&d hubs. >> we didn't know about rochester. i'm pleasantly surprised as to how good a fit it is for us.ir >> reporter: triteria? >> is it a big place? because this won't work unless it's a big enough population center. is it well-educated? is there a good sciee education system? is it affordable? is there a low cme rate? how's the commute time? >> reporter: how d rochester come out on top? >> right now, you can get
6:49 pm
anywhere in 20 minutes. >> reporter: how many universies? >> 18. to reporter: what's it cos buy a house around here? >> the average price is less than $200,000. >> reporter: of course, admits jennifer leonard, who heads the rochester area comonnity foundathere's a reason for those low housing prices. >> we are still the third poorest city in the top 75 metro areas, third highest in thtop 100 cities for conceon of poverty. we need help. reporter: but that's wh jump start means.d ke so many cities, rochester's de-industrialized past could be a key to its future. >> industries have developed here that ve made e name rochester synonymous with quality and precision manufacturing.ep >>ter: kodak, bausch and lomb, and xerox once employed over 100,000 locals. today, a few thousand total. >> if you don't change, change will change yo >> my mother worked for kodak,
6:50 pm
and my dad worked for xerox. >> rorter: lovely warren is rochester's mayor. >> i don't think anyone ever imagined that the industry would change as rapidly as it did and that we would experience the economic decline that we did. >> reporter: jobs fled, but people stayed... with know-how, says the mayor. >> building on a legacy that was kodak, xerox and bausch and lomb. >> reporter: in an old kodak department store, new york state grants have seeded high-tech incubators. >> this is our spindle imaging system, and we enable you to see now with tenimes improved precision in three dimensions. >> we use the front camera of the subtle changes in the color time your heart beoccurs eachsk >> so, we have this innovativeuo flscent microscope with smalimplants that go intole multegions of the brain. >> reporter: these things aitually go into your brain.
6:51 pm
and these tiny blobs that turn on and off are individual neurons. >> reporter: every one of the dozens of firms at this recent conference focused on optics and photonics, the science of light. >> how much data can beta transferred over what distance, at what por, using what cost. and it just so happens that photons beat electrons every day of the week. >> reporter: terry c longtime kodak executive, chaired the conference. >> do i believe that rochester, new york, or the finger lakes region could be the photon valley of the future? absolutely. >> reporter: and there's a huge opportunity, say gruber and johnson: the private sector doesn't invest in basic r&d. consider yasaman soudagar's brain implants. >> so, if you understand exactly how the memory circuitry in the brain works, then, whenei zhmer's is happening, we can understand what is going wrong the brain that is causing the disease. >> reporter: so, if this is
6:52 pm
technology which could actually arrestmaybe reverse alzheimer's in humans someday, then investors are throwing money at you? >> (no laughs ) no, they are not. investors want to get ten times return in three to five vears on their ment. >> reporter: and you know this because you've pitched investor >> and they have told us that wa are just not advanced enough for them they want us to talk to them when the device is ready to be used ihumans. >> reporter: we have all this investment capital in this country. we have all these venturewe capitalists whose job is to deploy that capitay.most efficien what's wrong? >> if you want more growth,gh productivity, and you want that to be spread across the entire geography of the united states, the only entity that has deep enough pockets and thpotential to deploy enou resources to make a difference is the federal government. >> reporter: but hold on. government, picking winner how about the failed solar panel firm solyna, which got $500 million in federal loan
6:53 pm
guarantees? government invests in a company, company goes kaput. it's as if we burned the dollars. >> that was less than 2% of thee we spent on this clean energy program, and all the rest of the portfolio is paid back. indeedall of the solar production the u.s.-- and, obviously, solar production is a key industry for the future-- all of it grew out othat program. >> reporr: and look at the human genome project, says simon johnson, into which the federal government pumped some $3 billion. >> that industry has created0 270,bs today. it pays about $6 billion in taxes per year it's a win-win. ic it's a symbiotelationship. reporter: as it has been for irobot and boston's "route 128"u scienc >> there are 25 companies founded ex-irobot employees in this 128 area. the boston area ther ofe made the universe for the robot
6:54 pm
industry. >> reporter: as anyo who's watched boston dynamics videos on youtube will understand. irobot itself? perfecting more modest cyborgs these days-- a mop, a lawn mower. look, mom and dad, no hands. for the pbs newshour, business and economics correspondent paul solman. >> woodruff: you can see if your own city makes the list of potential w techlogy hubs on the website, http://jumpstartingamerica.com. >> woodruff: photographer >>oodruff: only ten democratic hefuls will be on stage because of new democratic criteria forhe debate.
6:55 pm
learn how candidas who won't get online are changing their campaign strategy. that's online at pbs.org/newshour. that is the newshour for tonight. rand that's the newshour tonight. i'm judy woodruff. join us online and again here tomorrow evening with mark shields and david brooks on a republican challenging the president in 2020 as the next debate narrows the demratic field. for all of us at the and see you soon.nk you >> major funding for the pbs newshour has been provided by: >> babbel. a language learning app that uses speech recognition a technolo teaches real-life conversations. in a new langue, like spanish, ench, german, italian, and more. babbel's 10-15 minute lessons are available as an p, or online. more information on babbel.com. >> consumer cellular. financial services firm raymond james.
6:56 pm
>> and with the ongoing support of these institutions and friends of the newshour. >> this program was made possible by the corporation fort public broadg. and by contributions to your pbs station fr viewers like you. thank you. ni capt sponsored by newshour productions, llc media access group at wgbh access.wgbh.org
6:57 pm
6:58 pm
6:59 pm
7:00 pm
martha stewart: are you eager to learn how to update your favorite recipes with better for you ingredients from the modern pantry? then you won't want to miss this season of "martha bakes." join me in my kitchen where i'll teach you how to transfram everything fromtional cakes, pies and even breads with new ingredients, plus mouthwatering gluten and dairy free treats for everyday and every occasion. welcome to a new way to bake. narrator: "martha bakes" is made possible by. for more than 200 years, domino and c&h sugars have been used by home bakers to help bring recipes to life and create memories for each new generatioia of baking ensts. ♪

30 Views

info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on