What to Know
- The world's biggest coal users — China, the United States and India — have boosted coal mining in 2017
- Drowning in a sea of lawsuits and recall costs, Japanese air bag maker Takata Corp. is expected to seek bankruptcy protection
- Sportscaster Erin Andrews and former NHL player Jarret Stoll have tied the knot in Montana, her publicist says
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Coal on the Rise in China, U.S., India After Record 2016 Drop
The world's biggest coal users — China, the United States and India — have boosted coal mining in 2017, in an abrupt departure from last year's record global decline for the heavily polluting fuel and a setback to efforts to rein in climate change emissions. Mining data reviewed by The Associated Press show that production through May is up by at least 121 million tons, or 6 percent, for the three countries compared to the same period last year. The change is most dramatic in the U.S., where coal mining rose 19 percent in the first five months of the year, according to U.S. Department of Energy data. Coal's fortunes had appeared to hit a new low less than two weeks ago, when British energy company BP reported that tonnage mined worldwide fell 6.5 percent in 2016, the largest drop on record. China and the U.S. accounted for almost all the decline, while India showed a slight increase. The reasons for this year's turnaround include policy shifts in China, changes in U.S. energy markets and India's continued push to provide electricity to more of its poor, industry experts said. President Trump's role as coal's booster-in-chief in the U.S. has played at most a minor role, they said.
All Building Cladding Samples Tested Failed Fire Safety, U.K. Says
Britain's government urged local officials across the country to urgently submit samples of tower block cladding after tests found that all samples tested so far have failed fire safety standards. In London, officials tried to complete the evacuation of hundreds of apartments in four towers deemed unsafe, but faced resistance as several families refused to budge. The government has collected 34 samples of external cladding — panels widely used to insulate buildings and improve their appearance — and all failed a "combustibility test," Community Secretary Sajid Javid said. The national testing was ordered after a June 14 fire engulfed Grenfell Tower in London, killing at least 79 people. The tower's cladding was believed to have rapidly spread that blaze. The samples came from 17 different locations around the country, including London, Manchester, Plymouth and Portsmouth.
Air Bag Maker Takata Bankruptcy Expected in Japan, U.S.
Drowning in a sea of lawsuits and recall costs, Japanese air bag maker Takata Corp. is expected to seek bankruptcy protection in Tokyo and the United States. Takata was done in by defective air bag inflators that can explode with too much force, spewing out shrapnel. They're responsible for at least 16 deaths and 180 injuries and have touched off the largest automotive recall in U.S. history. So far 100 million inflators have been recalled worldwide including 69 million in the U.S., affecting 42 million vehicles. Rival Key Safety Systems, based in suburban Detroit, will buy most of Takata's assets for $1.6 billion and take over its manufacturing operations to make seat belts, air bags and other automotive safety devices, according to two people briefed on the matter. Some remnants of Takata will be folded into an entity with a different name to keep manufacturing inflators used as replacement parts in recalls, said the people, who didn't want to be identified because the bankruptcy terms have not been made public.
Remy Ma Beats Nicki Minaj at BET Awards; '90s R&B Shines
Remy Ma has ended rival Nicki Minaj's seven-year winning streak at the 2017 BET Awards, a show highlighted by '90s R&B and groups popular in that decade, as well as five wins for Beyonce. Ma, who was released from prison in 2014, won best female hip hop artist Sunday in Los Angeles, an award Minaj has won since 2010. Ma last won the prize in 2005, and was sentenced to prison three years later after she shot a former friend after accusing her of theft. In March, Ma released the hostile diss track "Shether," which earned praised from critics and rap fans. Minaj never officially responded to the song. At the live show at the Microsoft Theater, '90s R&B favorites New Edition and Xscape were the most welcomed performers of the night.
Erin Andrews, Ex-NHL Player Jarret Stoll Marry in Montana, Publicist Says
Sportscaster Erin Andrews and former NHL player Jarret Stoll have tied the knot. Jennifer Allen, a publicist for Andrews, confirms that the 39-year-old Fox Sports sideline reporter and "Dancing with the Stars" co-host married the 35-year-old Stoll over the weekend. People magazine first reported the nuptials. According to the magazine, the wedding was held at sunset in Montana in front of a small group of family and friends. Andrews wore a gown designed by Carolina Herrera. The couple, who started dating in 2012, got engaged in December at Disneyland.
Writer Sues Tupac Filmmakers, Alleges Copyright Infringement
A magazine writer has filed a copyright infringement lawsuit against the creators of the new Tupac Shakur biopic, saying that portions of the film are based on his articles about the late rapper. Kevin Powell says in the suit "All Eyez On Me" borrows from articles he wrote and interviews he did with Shakur in the 1990s for Vibe magazine. The lawsuit says, for instance, the film's fictional character Nigel is based on a character Powell wrote about in one of his magazine articles. The suit says the character is based on Jacques "Haitian Jack" Agnant. Powell is suing Lionsgate, Program Pictures, Morgan Creek Pictures as well as producers and screenwriters of the film. A representative for Lionsgate declined to comment, and a lawyer for Powell didn't reply to an email seeking comment. "All Eyez On Me" debuted last weekend at No. 3 with $27.1 million.