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CNN10 2021-05-12

CNN 10

Vaccine Eligibility Expands in the U.S and Reaction is Mixed; Populous Nation's Birth Rate Decline; New Discovery in Italy; Electric Cars

Aired May 12, 2021 - 04:00:00 ET


CARL AZUZ, CNN 10 ANCHOR: I'm Carl Azuz and this is CNN 10, your objective overview of world events. Americans between the ages of 12 and 15 years old are now eligible for a corona virus vaccine. Before Monday, it was only supposed to be available for people ages 16 and up.

Though there are three vaccines being distributed in the United States, only the one made by the companies Pfizer and Biontech is available to adolescents and young teenagers and none of the shots has been formally approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. That process can take years though it might be sped up for the COVID-19 shots. The vaccines that are available have been authorized for emergency use, which means they've gotten special FDA clearance to be administered for the time being.

The authorization for the Pfizer drug came after a clinical trial was carried out in more than 2,200 people ages 12 to 15. Pfizer says it showed its vaccine was highly effective and well tolerated with common side effects including pains, fatigues, headache, chills, joint pain and fever.

Those are the same ones observed by adults. Health experts say that vaccinating young people will better protect them from getting corona virus and from spreading it to people who are more threatened by it. They estimate that the overall survival rate for COVID-19 is about 99.5 percent.

That's an average across all ages. Children are less likely to get seriously sick from corona virus than older adults.

The authorization for 12 to 15 year olds has gotten a mixed reaction from parents. Some brought in their children for inoculations before the Centers for Disease Control formally recommended them. That was expected to happen on Wednesday afternoon. Some have said they're hesitant or unwilling to get their kids the shot because COVID vaccines were developed faster than any other vaccines in history and because they haven't been available long enough for there to be any long term studies on their effects.

The CDC says that as of early this week, 46 percent of all Americans had gotten at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. That process has not gone as quickly in Japan where there's greater resistance to vaccines than in the U.S. and where less than three percent of the population is estimated to have had at least one dose.


BLAKE ESSIG, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The Olympics are set to take place in less than three months but despite the daily case count nationwide increasing.

The number of patients with serious symptoms continuing to break records and with several prefectures including Tokyo under an extended state of emergency order.

It seems Olympic organizers are trying to do everything possible to keep the games on track for this summer and according to Japan's prime minister, the decision whether or not to hold the Olympics isn't up to him. He said so on Monday during a lower house session.

YOSHIHIDE SUGA, JAPAN'S PRIME MINISTER TRANSLATED: I've never put the Olympics first. My priority has been to protect the lives and health of the Japanese population. The IOC has already made a decision to hold the games and notify countries as such.

ESSIG: And it's worth noting that the IOC is a non-profit which generates 90 percent of its revenue from the Summer and Winter games. Even with no overseas spectators, the broadcasting rights are a big money maker for them. So clearly, the financial stakes here are enormously high and the IOC will be doing everything it possibly can to make sure the games go ahead. Here's IOC's vice-president over the weekend.

JOHN COATES, IOC VICE-PRESIDENT: We're implementing those countermeasures. You've read the playbook. You can -- you can see those. They've all been countermeasures predicated and their being (inaudible) vaccines so that situation's improved and the games are going ahead.

ESSIG: IOC President Thomas Bach was scheduled to arrive in Japan early next week but because of the extended state of emergency order, his visit has been postponed. Regarding vaccinations, here in Japan, less than one percent of the population has been fully vaccinated which is a big point of concern for infectious disease specialists. Blake Essig, CNN, Tokyo.


AZUZ: 10 Second Trivia. Which of these nations has the lowest birth rate? Egypt, Mexico, United States or China. With a rate of less than 12 births per 1,000 people, China has the lowest birth rate on this list.

With more than 1,400,000,000 people, China has the largest population on the planet but its growth is slowing down in recent years partly because of a controversial policy that China's Communist government implemented in the late 1970s'.

At that time, it was afraid its growing population would hurt its economic growth. So China made it illegal for people to have more than one child.

Now, however, China's having the opposite problem. It may not have enough young workers to sustain its future economy. China's government says the declining birth rate is a quote "natural result of economic and social development" and it puts part of the blame on the rising costs of raising children.


KRISTIE LU STOUT, CNN CORRESPONDENT: In the world's most populous country, population growth is slipping. According to China's National Bureau of Statistics, China posted an average growth rate of 0.52 percent over the past decade.

That's 0.04 percent lower than the previous decade. This is China's population growth since the 1960s' and this is significant. The census has huge implications for social welfare, healthcare, technology and especially China's economy.

A slow down in population growth means a slow down in workforce growth as well making it harder for China to catch up to the U.S. economically.

Experts say that China's slowing population growth is due to rising living costs in major cities and the fact that urban couples value their independence over having children. There is pressure on Beijing to rollout measures to support population growth. Back in 2016, China scrapped it's one child policy and replaced it with a two child policy but the birth rate has continued to decline. Kristie Lu Stout, CNN, Hong Kong.


AZUZ: Archeologists have discovered something extraordinary and maybe a little gruesome in an ancient cave on the west coast of Italy. Among the bones of hyenas, elephants, horse and other animals, scientists say they found the remains of nine Neanderthals or neandertalls, a type of primitive human.

This according to the Italian Cultural Ministry which says the remains date back tens of thousands of years. Here's where this gets gross. Researchers the Neanderthal bones showed signs of having been gnawed on, suggesting maybe that animals brought them back to the cave to eat them. Archeologists say two other Neanderthals skulls have been found here in the past.

Electric cars were some of the first cars on American roads back in the late 1800s'. Today though, they make up about one percent of all vehicles driven in the country. They're less polluted to drive than gas powered cars and they offer more design options without a big engine and transmission getting in the way but they're more expensive.

It takes a lot longer to charge a battery than to fill a gas tank. Those batteries lose their ability to hold a charge over time and environmentalists have concerns about endangering certain plants when the lithium for EV batteries is mined. Despite that, sales of electric cars are expected to rise in the years ahead.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: In 2018, the number of electric vehicles on the world's roads reached over 5 million, a 40 percent increase from the year before.

That momentum could continue. Prices for battery power have fallen rapidly over the last few years and our expected to continue dropping as more battery factories are built and manufacturing technologies improve.

But for now, there are challenges, slower and wider adoption of electric vehicles. For starters, they need more range more places to charge and just more variety. Today's electric offerings tend to fall on either end of the spectrum. On one hand, few hatchbacks that are still more expensive than their gasoline powered equivalents, on the other hand, pricy luxury cars. That said, all of this will change over the next few years as auto makers bring more electric cars to market.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The good news is that the mechanical simplicity of electric cars, they have a fraction of the moving parts in a gasoline car, makes designing and engineering new model variants relatively easy. Plus companies like Volkswagen and General Motors are also backing rollouts of big, fast, charging networks. With all this on the way, some analysts predict within the next 20 years, EV's will make up the majority of cars sold.


AZUZ: Mighty Morphin Power Pasta. 10 out of 10. The twists, spirals and tube that prepackaged pasta comes in make if fun to eat and important for the sauce. But a lot of its packaging is filled with air to accommodate the shapes so researchers at Carnage Melon University found a way to stamp noodles so they curl up and roll when they're cooked but so they could be packaged in smaller, flatter boxes. They say this could save space and packaging waste.

You can "ziti" appeal and as long as people "cantaloni" taste the difference, maybe critics will "penne" nothing but "radially" reviews. Or "zoe" you thought. You can't "tallatella" everyone the "spaghetti" on the "flat noodle" band wagon. For them, it's too far "fall fetch" for "flat faced fettuccini" to "vermicelli". It just seems "fucsuili". Bucharest Christian Academy gets today's shoutout. It is so good to have you watching from Bucharest, Romania. I'm Carl Azuz for CNN.