By: Nathaniel Tok

USA – Tropical storm makes landfall on American coast

The storm season continues as tropical storm Nate brought strong winds and heavy rains to southeast USA. The storm made its landfall as a hurricane in the states of Louisiana and Mississippi before being downgraded to a tropical storm. Its arrival prompted Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and parts of Florida to issue warnings and evacuation orders. Nate has killed at least 25 people in Central America, causing floods and landslides. The tail of the storm is still in the region, where thousands have lost their homes and hundreds of thousands are without running water. Nate comes after last month’s storms — Maria and Irma — also battered the region.

With files from BBC News.

CANADA – Regulations bring end to plan for eastern pipeline

Tough federal regulations have prompted TransCanada Corp to abandon its plans for the Energy East pipeline that would have shipped crude oil off of the east coast. The cancellation of the $15.7 billion pipeline comes as a blow for Canada’s oil industry already hurting from low crude oil prices. The decision comes after Canada’s National Energy Board announced an environmental review process that would include indirect greenhouse gas contributions. In the province of Alberta, the government has criticized this new process while environmentalist groups welcomed the pipeline’s demise. Energy East would have shipped 1.1 million barrels of oil every day to Europe and Asia and represents the second Canadian pipeline to be scrapped in less than a year.

With files from Reuters.

SUDAN – America eliminates Sudan sanctions

The United States of America has lifted most trade and economic sanctions against Sudan, citing the latter’s progress in the areas of terrorism and human rights. The process of lifting sanctions began earlier this year under then-president Barack Obama. The US State Department said in a statement that it recognized Sudan’s “sustained positive actions” but is looking to see continued progress in order to sustain peace. The lifting of the two-decade-old sanctions is expected to boost many areas of the Sudanese economy that has been affected by the restrictions such as agriculture, aviation, and technology. Human rights and peace activist groups have said that not enough progress has been made to warrant the lifting of the sanctions, which were first instituted after the country provided refuge for fugitives such as Osama bin Laden.

With files from BBC News.

SPAIN – Rallies across the country call for dialogue on Catalonia

Thousands of people dressed in white marched in cities across Spain last weekend to call for dialogue between the Catalonia and Spain. Catalan leaders say results from a recent independence referendum show that Catalonians want to split from Spain while the federal government has declared the vote illegal and claimed that secession goes against the constitution. The political crisis is also affecting the economy as companies move their central offices out of Catalonia and market confidence in Spain falls. European Union leaders are worried about spillover from the crisis, which could fuel other independent movements. Catalonia, with its unique culture, has long claimed to be distinct from Spain.

With files from Reuters.

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