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Local: California pilots water conservation project

Hoping to conserve water by reducing evaporation, California is funding a project to install solar panels above open canals, according to The New York Times. The project is being led by Solar Aquagrid, a Bay Area-based company, and is undergoing a piloting phase in Stanislaus County. 

Positioning solar panels above canals offers unique benefits in addition to reduced evaporation, such as generating renewable energy, providing a cooling system for the solar panels and reducing algae growth, according to The New York Times. One study published by UC Merced professors showed that implementing the project across the state could save enough water to sustain 2 million people. 


National: ‘Phantom of the Opera’ leaves Broadway

“The Phantom of the Opera,” Broadway’s longest-running show of 35 years, was performed for the final time on April 16, according to NPR. After its closing night, the musical, written by Andrew Lloyd-Webber, had run 13,981 times, employing over 6,500 people. More than 20 million audience members have seen the performance, which has grossed over $1.3 billion. In addition, the musical has won seven Tony awards.

The final performance featured Emilie Kouatchou, who made history as the first Black actress to play Christine on Broadway. Although the show had to end after losing money prior to the pandemic, its final productions sold out, according to NPR. Many actors, musicians and other crew members were left having to find new employment opportunities. 


International: Leaked U.S. documents elicit international reaction

Leaked secret government documents dating from February and March have sparked varying international reactions. While some countries, like Israel, have accused the U.S. of spying, other countries, including many NATO members, barely commented on the matter, according to the Washington Post. 

The documents were first leaked onto social media platforms in early April, according to CNN. While most of the content is centered on the Russia-Ukraine war, the documents also reveal intelligence on other countries such as China and North Korea.

Among the most sensitive of the leaked content are maps of Ukraine’s defenses, war plans and details as to what the U.S. government believes are Ukraine’s major weaknesses according to CNN. 

Jack Teixeira, a 21-year-old member of the Air National Guard, was arrested on April 13 for being suspected of releasing the files. Teixeira will be tried in the Federal District Court in Massachusetts, according to CNN.