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North Korea threatens to ‘counter’ US over military drills

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North Korea threatened on Saturday to “counter the U.S.” if the United States holds joint military exercises with South Korea, saying the drills would harm reconciliation efforts on the peninsula.

The United States is due to start joint exercises in early April, a South Korean presidential security adviser said this week according to Yonhap news agency — the latest in a series of drills that the north has regularly described as a threat.

“If the U.S. finally holds joint military exercises while keeping sanctions on the DPRK, the DPRK will counter the U.S. by its own mode of counteraction and the U.S. will be made to own all responsibilities for the ensuing consequences,” North Korea’s official KCNA news agency said in its commentary.

The DPRK is the acronym of the country’s official name, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.

On Feb. 23, the United States said it was imposing its largest package of sanctions to pressure North Korea to give up its nuclear and missile programs. President Donald Trump warned of a “phase two” that could be”very, very unfortunate for the world” if the steps did not work.

KCNA accused Washington of trying to”bring dark clouds of a war to hang over the Korean peninsula.”

“The U.S. is swimming against the trend for the detente on the Korean peninsula,” KCNA said.

South Korea plans to send a special envoy to North Korea in response to an invitation from leader Kim Jong Un, South Korean President Moon Jae-in told Trump in a phone call on Thursday.

The Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang last month gave a boost to recent engagement between the two Koreas after sharply rising tensions over the North’s missile program.

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Millennial dogecoin investor refuses to sell ⁠despite crypto crash

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Glauber Contessoto says that he invested over $250,000 in dogecoin on Feb. 5 with a belief that he’d become a millionaire — and on April 15, he did.

But on Monday, the top cryptocurrencies by market value — including bitcoin, ether and dogecoin — started to crash following news of a crackdown in China, CNBC reported.

With losses extending on Tuesday, Contessoto’s portfolio, which contains only dogecoin, was hit. His holdings are down over $167,000 on Tuesday alone, he tells CNBC Make It, and his portfolio was worth $831,538.88 as of Tuesday at 4:40 p.m. EST, he says.

“Up until yesterday, I had been a millionaire,” Contessoto, 33, says. “If bitcoin and ethereum weren’t also [hit], I’d be worried.”

Glauber Contessoto’s dogecoin holdings via Robinhood on June 22.

Four months ago, when he bought in, dogecoin was priced at about 4.5 cents. On May 8, the meme-inspired cryptocurrency, which was created as a joke in 2013 based on the “Doge” meme of a shiba inu dog, hit an all-time high of about 73 cents, and the value of Contessoto’s holdings surpassed $2 million.

After its surge, dogecoin’s price continued to fluctuate, but Contessoto remained confident in holding for the long-term — he even bought more dogecoin during the dips. Even now, he refuses to sell.

This volatility, however, is in part why experts warn that cryptocurrency is a risky, speculative investment. Some warn to be especially cautious when investing in dogecoin, since it lacks the scarcity and technological development that bitcoin has, for example.

Still, Contessoto remains bullish on dogecoin, even though he isn’t currently a “dogecoin millionaire” on paper. “When I went into this dogecoin investment, I planned on being in it for at least a year,” he says. “I put in my life savings because I knew I would eventually become a millionaire.”

Now, he plans to hold the currency for much longer than a year. “Whatever happens in the short-term doesn’t matter to me because I’m looking to ‘hodl’ dogecoin for years to come. I’m truly not worried at the end of the day.”

Contessoto is sticking to his original plan: He will sell 10% of his dogecoin holdings once his portfolio reaches a $10 million value, but will leave the rest invested, he says.

“People get caught up in the short-term and don’t have the patience to see the investment all the way through,” he says of his decision to hold.

While Contessoto isn’t worried, experts recommend exercising caution with dogecoin and warn to only invest what you can afford to lose.

But for Contessoto, “volatility comes with the territory and if you can’t stomach the fluctuations, then maybe you’re not cut out for crypto.”

Dogecoin is currently trading at around 19 cents, according to CoinMarketCap, with a market value of over $24 billion.

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Don’t miss: Crypto is ‘the future of finance’: Why Gen Z is ditching traditional investments—but with caution

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How to live more sustainably? Five experts share easy green tips

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A group hold placards in front of a mass gathering of G7 paddle-out protesters organised by the environmental charity Surfers Against Sewage, at Gyllyngvase Beach on June 12, 2021 in Falmouth, England.

Hugh Hastings | Getty Images News | Getty Images

Governments around the world have pledged to become carbon neutral in the coming decades and to help reduce the impact that our day-to-day activities are having on the environment. 

But what can we do as individuals?

CNBC speaks to five experts who share their ideas on how we can improve our carbon footprints.

1. Ask questions

Nasreen Sheikh is an advocate against poverty and fast fashion. She was born in a small village located on the border of India and Nepal, and at around the age of 10 she ended up working at a sweatshop.

More than $127 billion worth of garments that are imported annually by G-20 nations are likely to come from modern slavery, according to the Walk Free Foundation’s Global Slavery Index 2018 Report.

The core of the problem, according to Sheikh, is that “people don’t ask questions: where are my clothes from, where are chocolates from or where my coffee comes from.”

In order to live more sustainably, she suggests: “I think beyond the price tag, and I consider the people who make our clothes, I read the label and I ask questions: Who made my clothes? And I support only ethical, sustainable and Fairtrade brands.”

2. Your food

A plant-based diet “has benefits for all the planet and society and people as a whole,” Shireen Kassam, the co-founder of Plant Based Health Online, a group that educates health professionals and advocates for plant-based nutrition, told CNBC.

Beef is the most polluting food product in modern agriculture, emitting 99.48 kg of greenhouse gas emissions per kilogram of food, according to Our World in Data. Lamb and mutton follow at 39.72kg per kilogram of food.

Kassam says: “The easy wins are getting rid of red and processed meat because both for health and the environment that is the biggest impact you can make as an individual.”

“And rather than thinking about it as taking foods out or avoiding foods or restricting, it is actually a diet that’s full of abundance — we have got thousands of edible plants,” she said.

3. Your energy

“Most of the energy we use in the home is for heating and hot water. Check, if you have got heating controls, that they are set to a comfortable level and that your heating is only coming on when you need it on. Because if it is on when you’re out, it is just wasting energy,” Laura McGadie, the group head of energy at the Energy Saving Trust, a British non-profit organization, said.

Our energy consumption plays a big part in our carbon footprint. In the U.K. alone, in order to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050, it is estimated that carbon emissions from heating households and hot water will have to be cut by 95% over the next 30 years.

“Another thing you can do is making sure you don’t leave your appliances on standby,” she said, adding this could save you about £25 ($34.7) a year.

And when it comes to your mobile “as soon as it is 100% charged, you don’t want it charging any more. So unplug it and switch it off the wall, because you will feel that the plug for the phone charger often gets warm, if it is getting warm then that’s using energy,” McGadie also said.

4. Your waste

Plastic production has reportedly expanded from 2.3 million tons in 1950 to 448 million tons in 2015, according to data shared by National Geographic.

In addition, every year, about 8 million tons of plastic waste ends up in our oceans, endangering biodiversity.

Melanie Fisher, the founder of Zero Waste Goods, a sustainable events company, said there are three parts to how she tackles her own plastic waste. The first one being due diligence on the products she buys.

“Then there is taking care of the products I already own, so if you can extend the life of something either by mending it or even giving it to charity … and then there is how do I recycle, what is the end of life of the products I am using?” she told CNBC.

“With my personal care products, I really slimmed down what I have used and the stuff that I do buy I try to make sure that there is zero packaging if possible,” Fisher added.

“With my beauty products I make sure I am buying from a brand that either you can go and get the products refilled, or they are entirely made of glass or tins so you make sure they can be recycled,” she added.

5. General consumption

The United States is the world’s largest consumer market, according to non-profit the Brookings Institution.

In 2020, American residents spent more than $3 billion in soft goods, such as cars, clothing and food, data from the Federal Reserve Bank of St Louis showed.

But 20 years prior, the consumption of goods in the U.S. was only half that level.

Elizabeth Teo, who has a double major in physical and environmental geography and environmental studies from the University of Toronto, told CNBC that everyone tackles sustainability differently.

“[It] depends on what comes easiest to you, what areas you have access to,” he said.

“Personally, for me, I just try to buy less in general, I think that’s really what everyone needs to do.”

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Andrew Yang concedes in NYC mayoral race

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Mayoral candidate Andrew Yang greets supporters at a Manhattan hotel as he concedes in his campaign for mayor on June 22, 2021 in New York City.

Spencer Platt | Getty Images

Andrew Yang has conceded the race to replace New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio after it was clear to him that he won’t get enough votes, even with ranked choice voting and absentee ballots yet to be counted.

The business entrepreneur, who ran for president and never held a political office before, thanked his wife and his supporters at a Hell’s Kitchen hotel late Tuesday night, about two hours after polls closed, and said the campaign was amazing and that he learned a lot about the city.

Yang touted that he had more individual donors than any other campaign, talked about rising anti-Asian hate and how that played a role in his campaign.

“I am not going to be the mayor of New York City based upon the numbers that have come in tonight. I am conceding this race. Though we’re not sure who’s the next mayor is going to be, but whoever that person is, I will be very happy to work with them to improve the lives of the 8.3 million people who live in our great city and I encourage everyone here to do the same,” the 46-year-old Democrat said in his speech.

Yang said he doesn’t regret working with his competitor Kathryn Garcia, adding that he would do it all over again because he believes she should be the next mayor.

As of early Wednesday morning, Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams appeared to take a fragile lead with Garcia and Maya Wiley not far behind.

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