Abstracts: Offshore Drilling, Flint, Virtual Reality, and More

A roundup of science news from around the web — and around the world.

• In an unprecedented move, President Obama has banned new oil and gas drilling in most U.S.-owned waters in the Arctic and Atlantic oceans. Although his successor has vowed to take advantage of the country’s untapped fossil fuel resources, Obama’s decision won’t be so easy to reverse. (The Guardian)

Two former Flint emergency managers could face decades in prison.

Visual by iStock.com

• Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette announced felony charges against four more officials Tuesday for their roles in the ongoing water crisis in Flint. (Washington Post)

• China has issued red alerts for 24 cities and has advised people to stay indoors due to air pollution — the worst spell the country has experienced this year. (The Verge)

• Escaping into virtual reality can be fun, but it can also leave users questioning the physical world around them. (The Atlantic)

• The past year may have been tough on the environment, but here are five instances of good news for nature from 2016. (National Geographic)

• Outgoing White House science adviser John Holdren talks about the Obama administration’s record on science policy and what the future may hold. (Scientific American)

• A new study published on Monday shows that pregnancy changes the size and structure of areas of the brain in ways that may help mothering. (New York Times)

• A report from the U.K.’s House of Lords calls uncertainty over Brexit “corrosive” for science. (BBC)

• And finally, President-elect Trump’s doctor sat down for a three-hour interview with STAT, his first since the election. (STAT)

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