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CNN10 2021-09-30

CNN 10

International Concerns Over Inflation; NASA Mission to Study A Swarm of Asteroids; Efforts to End Bee Burning on an African Island. Aired 4- 4:10a ET

Aired September 30, 2021 - 04:00:00 ET


CARL AZUZ, CNN 10 ANCHOR: Hi, I'm Carl Azuz. Welcome to the show. First stop at this Thursday is inflation. Not for egos, not for balloons and in this case, not a good thing. Inflation, economically speaking, is when prices go up and your money doesn't buy as much. This has been a constant in America this year.

The Consumer Price Index is a measure of how prices change for goods and services over time, and in 2021 it's been hitting levels not seen since the "Great Recession" was underway in 2008. Prices rose by 4.2 percent in April as compared with April 2020. They were 5 percent higher in May over the previous year. June and July prices were 5.4 percent higher, and August were 5.3 percent over where they were in 2020. One component of all this is energy prices.

They've been skyrocketing lately, and that's causing concerns as the cold winter months approach. Earlier this year, a number of economists and banking officials said they believed the spike in inflation would be temporary. That once supply chains normalized after the COVID pandemic, prices for goods and services would also get back to normal, but that hasn't happened yet. Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said this week that not only have supply problems continued, they've gotten worse in some cases. So, inflation's likely to remain elevated for months before it settles down. Concerns about this contributed to a noticeable plunge in the U.S. Stock Market on Tuesday.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average of 30 major stocks dropped 569 points. It did recover a little of that on Wednesday. Inflation isn't just a problem in the United States. Spain and the United Kingdom are among the countries that are seeing price rises of their own, and the Bank of England says that while it expects inflation to cool off. It doesn't think it's hit its worst point yet. Stateside, there is some tools the Federal Reserve has to try to limit inflation. The Nation's Central Bank aims to keep the economy growing comfortably.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Inflation is the textbook term for prices rising over time and purchasing power falling. Think of a trip to the grocery store.

It sets you back $100. A year from now, you buy all the same items, but they now cost $103. That's inflation, 3 percent to be exact. So, what causes inflation? A rise in production costs is one scenario. For example, booming energy crisis can drive up the cost of transportation or manufacturing. Rising wages can also contribute to inflation. If business owners have to pay workers more, they might also raise prices to cover those higher labor costs. Inflation can also happen when the demand for good exceeds supply, then businesses selling those items can increase prices.

Prices going up slowly is generally considered a good thing, especially if wages rise too. It helps keep the economy dynamic and growing. The U.S.

Central Bank has even a target inflation rate, 2 percent, but inflation can quickly get out of control when governments print too much money to pay for spending. When not enough real value underlies that paper, prices surge. That's called hyperinflation. It happened in Germany. In Zimbabwe in the 2000s' and most recently in Venezuela, and it's the Feds job to make sure the United States keeps the inflation rate on track.


AZUZ: 10 Second Trivia. What is the fastest spinning planet in our solar system? Jupiter, Mercury, Saturn or Neptune. Jupiter spins much faster than Earth. Instead of 24 hours, its days last less than 10.

Though it spins quickly, Jupiter's orbit around the sun takes about 12 years and that coincidently is the scheduled length of a new NASA mission that aims to study asteroid swarms that orbit in front of and behind Jupiter. NASA's plan is to send a spacecraft called Lucy on a flyby of seven asteroids. It will observe them with a camera, a thermometer, and a spectrometer to see what their surfaces are made of. The Lucy Mission is scheduled to launch a little over two weeks from now, and while the asteroids are on either side of Jupiter, they're not exactly close to the planet.

NASA says they're as far away from Jupiter as Jupiter is from the sun. That's roughly 480 million miles. The Lucy Mission is projected to cost $981 million. What scientists are hoping to learn from it is some history about our solar system, including how the planets wound up in their current spots. After its mission is over, the 46-foot Lucy spacecraft could eventually collide with Earth or Jupiter, but scientists say that would take 100,000 years.

Coming back to down to Earth, in some parts of the world as you're about to see. There's a method of collecting honey by burning beehives. It's a traditional practice that's been carried out for quite some time, but it does kill most of the bees. On a largely impoverished island in the Gulf of Guinea, officials say the number of wild beehives has decreased because of the burning. There are people working to change these practices though in an effort to keep the workers working, the bees buzzing and the honey flowing.


LAURA BENITEZ BOSCO, PROJECT MANAGER FOR FAUNA AND FLORA, INTERNATIONAL: Sometimes you think that the only thing that they do is honey, but bees, these little creatures, they're much more than just honey.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: On the tropical island of Principe, located up the west coast of Africa, the food economy is heavily reliant on imports especially from Portugal. In its quest to become more self-sufficient, the islanders make a beeline for the planets most efficient pollinators.

BOSCO: We depend on the bees for everything that we eat, a lot of products, a lot of varieties and they do all of this for free and we don't even notice them. Without bees, our crops are much less productive. Overwhelming (inaudible) take every day from your food depends on bees.

(Inaudible) coffee can produce two times more if you have bees. So, if you have your coffee in your mornings, thank the bees. In the past (inaudible), the people used to burn the bees. There were just guys climbing trees without the (inaudible) suits or any protection, just burning the whole thing and just take the wild honey.

JOSE PEREIVA, BEEKEEPER TRANSLATED: I used to set fire to the swarms. I wouldn't spare a thought for the queen and her workers. I just burned them. But now with the training I already have, I would never advise anyone to set fire to a hive ever again.

BOSCO: People that work with bees can protect nature, can protect the forest and can be a sustainable alternative. We don't need to stop using honey. We can just find a more efficient way to do it.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Since bee burning was banned on Principe, over 400 hives a year have been saved, and in term the island hopes to become self-sustaining. As more local food products are being sold in the market.

BOSCO: It's urgent for (inaudible) to try to find a way to (inaudible) don't realize in other countries and other countries they need to be sustainable. And the only way to achieve this is for the bees. It's incredible how people here realize very quickly that (inaudible) burning the bees, they start to have less fruits and vegetables and less food on the island.

PEREIVA TRANSLATED: Today, here on Principe Island, we see there are many places where bees are pollinating. So, farmers today are happy because of the bees.

BOSCO: It's a win, win, both from the agriculture and the beekeeper. Everybody's winning. I wish humans could be more like bees. As the bees, we need to work together, with the land and with all the animals and the plants in the forest. We need to put back nature because we (inaudible)

nature. We are nature.


AZUZ: When it comes to goats and herding dogs, farms and fields make sense, a furniture store does not, especially when it's in the city of Atlanta. The idea was for the goats to naturally clear out an overgrown lot down the street, but the animals apparently decided to see the city while they were there and people passing by were happy to see them too. In fact, it was the city folks who helped to round up the country creatures right outside a Rooms To Go. More like "ruminants" to go if you know what I'm saying.

Where else would you look for a "bovidaybed". We hear they have a great sale on "aaaaautomons" and for "beardroom sets" they're prices are tough to "bleat". Just don't ask to see the "sheepskin" rugs because they might think you're trying to "billy" them with something "hoofensive".

Carrollton High School, thank you for watching from Saginaw, Michigan, and for leaving a comment at YouTube.com/cnn10. That is the only place we look for your shout out requests. I'm Carl Azuz.