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Hard Numbers: Carbon emissions rise, Greece beefs up military, Mali's election roadmap, US budget shortfall

Smoke from a coal-fired power plant.

62: Global carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuels were 62 percent higher last year than in 1990, according to a new UN report. The report noted that while pandemic-related lockdowns will curb emissions slightly in 2020, the global response to COVID-19 will have a negligible impact on global progress on mitigating climate change, with many impacts already "irreversible."


15,000: Greece has announced plans to bolster its military by adding 15,000 troops over the next five years and making a "robust purchase" of new hardware, including 18 French-made fighter jets. The move comes amid rising tensions with Turkey over hydrocarbon deposits in disputed areas of the Eastern Mediterranean.

18: Mali's ruling junta has agreed to appoint a transition government (led by a military official or a civilian leader) that will be in power for 18 months before calling an election. This was a key demand from the powerful Economic Community of West African States to lift trade and border sanctions that have been in place since last month's coup.

3 trillion: The US budget deficit has for the first time surpassed $3 trillion for the financial year that ends in September, more than double the previous record set in 2009. Although the deficit was already on track to reach the $3 trillion mark even before the coronavirus pandemic, massive public spending in response to COVID-19 blew that projection out of the water.

President and CEO of the National Urban League, Marc Morial, comes to 'That Made All the Difference' podcast to discuss his time as mayor of New Orleans, today's challenges, and what it will take to build a more just, equitable and inclusive society.

Listen now.

Though celebrations will surely be more subdued this year, many Germans will still gather (virtually) on October 3 to celebrate thirty years since reunification.

After the fall of the Berlin Wall — and the subsequent collapse of the Soviet Union — Germany reunited in a process whereby the much wealthier West absorbed the East, with the aim of expanding individual freedoms and economic equality to all Germans.

But thirty years later, this project has — to a large extent — been difficult to pull off. The economic and quality of life gap is shrinking, but lingering inequality continues to impact both German society and politics.

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GZERO Media, in partnership with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and Eurasia Group, today hosted its second virtual town hall on the hunt for a COVID-19 vaccine and the challenges of its distribution.

The panel was moderated by New York Times science and health reporter Apoorva Mandavilli and featured Gates Foundation's Deputy Director of Vaccines & Human Immunobiology, Lynda Stuart; Eurasia Group's Rohitesh Dhawan, Managing Director of Energy, Climate & Resources; Gates Foundation CEO Mark Suzman; and Gayle E. Smith, the president & CEO of ONE Campaign and former Administrator of the U.S. Agency for International Development.

Watch the full video above.

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Donald Trump's presidency has irked a lot of people around the world. And in fairness, that's no surprise. He was elected in part to blow up long-standing assumptions about how international politics, trade, and diplomatic relations are supposed to work.

But while he has correctly identified some big challenges — adapting NATO to the 21st century, managing a more assertive China, or ending America's endless wars in Afghanistan and Iraq — his impulsive style, along with his restrictions on trade and immigration, have alienated many world leaders. Global polls show that favorable views of the US have plummeted to all-time lows in many countries, particularly among traditional American allies in Europe.

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Watch: Tolu Olubunmi in conversation with Dr. Samira Asma from the World Health Organization on how they are advancing health data innovation in the age of COVID-19.

This content is brought to you by our 2020 UN General Assembly partner, Microsoft.

Watch UN Innovation Room conversations weekly on Thursdays at 9 am EDT: https://www.gzeromedia.com/unga/livestream/

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