When the United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union last month, the seaside town of Port Talbot in Wales eagerly went along with the move. Brexit was approved by some 57 percent of the town's residents.

Now some of them are wondering if they made the wrong decision.

The June 23 Brexit vote has raised questions about the fate of the troubled Port Talbot Works, Britain's largest surviving steel plant — a huge, steam-belching facility that has long been the town's biggest employer.

Solar Impulse 2 has landed in Cairo, completing the penultimate leg of its attempt to circumnavigate the globe using only the power of the sun.

The trip over the Mediterranean included a breathtaking flyover of the Pyramids. Check it out:

President Obama is challenging Americans to have an honest and open-hearted conversation about race and law enforcement. But even as he sits down at the White House with police and civil rights activists, Obama is mindful of the limits of that approach.

"I've seen how inadequate words can be in bringing about lasting change," the president said Tuesday at a memorial service for five law officers killed last week in Dallas. "I've seen how inadequate my own words have been."

Mice watching Orson Welles movies may help scientists explain human consciousness.

At least that's one premise of the Allen Brain Observatory, which launched Wednesday and lets anyone with an Internet connection study a mouse brain as it responds to visual information.

The FBI says it is giving up on the D.B. Cooper investigation, 45 years after the mysterious hijacker parachuted into the night with $200,000 in a briefcase, becoming an instant folk figure.

"Following one of the longest and most exhaustive investigations in our history," the FBI's Ayn Dietrich-Williams said in a statement, "the FBI redirected resources allocated to the D.B. Cooper case in order to focus on other investigative priorities."

This is the first in a series of essays concerning our collective future. The goal is to bring forth some of the main issues humanity faces today, as we move forward to uncertain times. In an effort to be as thorough as possible, we will consider two kinds of threats: those due to natural disasters and those that are man-made. The idea is to expose some of the dangers and possible mechanisms that have been proposed to deal with these issues. My intention is not to offer a detailed analysis for each threat — but to invite reflection and, hopefully, action.

Alabama authorities say a home burglary suspect has died after police used a stun gun on the man.  Birmingham police say he resisted officers who found him in a house wrapped in what looked like material from the air conditioner duct work.  The Lewisburg Road homeowner called police Tuesday about glass breaking and someone yelling and growling in his basement.  Police reportedly entered the dwelling and used a stun gun several times on a white suspect before handcuffing him.  Investigators say the man was "extremely irritated" throughout and didn't obey verbal commands.

It can be hard to distinguish among the men wearing grey suits and regulation haircuts on Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington. But David Margolis always brought a splash of color.

It wasn't his lovably disheveled wardrobe, or his Elvis ring, but something else: the force of his flamboyant personality. Margolis, a graduate of Harvard Law School, didn't want to fit in with the crowd. He wanted to stand out.

Montgomery Education Foundation's Brain Forest Summer Learning Academy was spotlighted Wednesday at Carver High School.  The academic-enrichment program is for rising 4th, 5th, and 6th graders in the Montgomery Public School system.  Community Program Director Dillion Nettles, says the program aims to prevent learning loss during summer months.  To find out how your child can participate in next summer's program visit Montgomery-ed.org

A police officer is free on bond after being arrested following a rash of road-sign thefts in southeast Alabama.  Brantley Police Chief Titus Averett says officer Jeremy Ray Walker of Glenwood is on paid leave following his arrest in Pike County.  The 30-year-old Walker is charged with receiving stolen property.  Lt. Troy Johnson of the Pike County Sheriff's Office says an investigation began after someone reported that Walker was selling road signs from Crenshaw County.  Investigators contacted the county engineer and learned signs had been reported stolen from several roads.


Long Island Power Authority Faces Commission

Dec 21, 2012
Originally published on December 21, 2012 11:16 am



The Long Island Power Authority is finally answering questions about its performance after Hurricane Sandy. LIPA, as it's known, is supposed to provide power to New York City's eastern suburbs, but needed weeks to restore power after the storm. Elected officials blasted the utility and executives have now answered questions from state investigators. Charles Lane of member station WSHU reports on what investigators think of the answers.

CHARLES LANE, BYLINE: Investigators made it clear from the get-go what they thought of the power company's response to Sandy.

BENJAMIN LAWSKY: We're not done with our investigation, but it appears so far, in short, to have been just an epic failure.

LANE: That's Benjamin Lawsky, superintendent of New York's Department of Financial Services. He co-chairs a powerful commission set up by New York Governor Andrew Cuomo charged with figuring out what went wrong at the Long Island Power Authority, or LIPA. The panel is supposed to give recommendations in the next few weeks on how to do better next time. At last night's meeting, lead investigator Nassau County District Attorney Kathleen Rice grew frustrated as she questioned, or perhaps jousted with, executives.

KATHLEEN RICE: No one here on this panel can say one thing that could have been done better, right? Am I missing something?

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Well, it's jumping the gun on the process.

LANE: LIPA COO Mike Hervey and others tried explaining to D.A. Rice that they were still recovering from the storm and hadn't begun what they called the lessons learned process. One unfortunate executive tried explaining that starting the review too soon would squelch the review's creativity.

RICE: If you were to tell people who lost their life, who lost loved ones, who don't have a home anymore, who don't have a business anymore, that squelching the creativity of someone who works for LIPA takes paramount importance to their life and their livelihood, I wouldn't say that outside of the confines of this room if I were you.

LANE: The key focus of Rice and others is how LIPA prepared for the flooding that occurred because of Sandy. The storm surge was higher than Long Island has ever seen. And once homes were flooded, LIPA shut off the power for fear of explosion. During restoration, LIPA told flooded homeowners that they have to get local towns to certify electrical inspections before LIPA would turn the power back on. The local towns didn't know this, and Hervey told Rice that the towns never asked if they should be doing it.

RICE: You're saying that the responsibility was the municipalities to ask the questions.

MIKE HERVEY: Code enforcement is the municipalities. Now, in areas where we had - municipalities took that up, New York City and the City of Long Beach...

RICE: Well, we're going to get there. We're going to get there.

HERVEY: ...it worked well in both of those areas, where the municipalities took that up.

RICE: We're going to get there.

LANE: Hervey said having a single interagency taskforce for the entire East Coast of the U.S. was needed in order to deal with the problem of re-energizing homes in storm-flooded areas. He recommends New York start one. He says he's also made the recommendation to the federal Department of Energy.

For NPR News, I'm Charles Lane on Long Island.

GREENE: Of course it wasn't just homes without power for weeks on Long Island. There were businesses too. And this week we got an idea of what that has done to the local economy. A new report from New York's Labor Department shows that Sandy hit employment hard. Long Island in November saw its first monthly job losses in more than two and a half years. The construction and hospitality industries were among those hardest hit. Economists believe Sandy, that big storm, cost Long Island's economy up to $10 billion. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright National Public Radio.