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News in Brief: Japan Enforces Mandatory Evacuation Near Nuclear Plant, and More

Japan Enforces Mandatory Evacuation Near Nuclear Plant

Japan Enforces Mandatory Evacuation Near Nuclear Plant

The Japanese government has banned entry into the 12-mile area surrounding the damaged nuclear power plant that has been spewing radiation since an earthquake and tsunami hit the island nation last month, according to The Washington Post. Residents wearing white protective suits and driving cars rushed back into the area to collect as many belongings as possible before complying with the mandatory evacuation. Most of the areas 80,000 residents had already left the area, but some evacuees braved the radiation to grab personal items before police could legally block them from returning home. Meanwhile, Reuters reports that an earthquake with an initial magnitude of 6.3 hit eastern Japan today and shook buildings in Tokyo. No tsunami warning was issued.

BP Sues to Share Responsibility for Gulf Disaster

BP has filed lawsuits against rig owner Transocean and the manufacturer of the rig's blowout preventer in an attempt to share the blame – and the costs of liabilities – of the Deepwater Horizon blowout that led to the worst ecological disaster in American history, according to NPR. BP filed suits in a New Orleans federal court accusing Cameron International of supplying a blowout preventer with a faulty design, and his seeking $40 billion from rig owner Transocean for essentially causing the disaster.

Forty-Five Percent of Republicans Say Obama Was Not Born in US

A False rumor claiming President Barack Obama was not born in the US is still holding water with many Americans, a poll by CBS and The New York Times shows. Forty-five percent of Republicans and 45 percent of Tea Party supporters believe Obama was not born in the US, and 22 percent of Republicans said they didn't know. A quarter of all Americans believe Obama is not native to the US, and 57 percent correctly said they believe the president is a native citizen.

Michigan ACLU Demands Info on Cell Phone Spy Devices

The American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan (ACLU) is urging the Michigan State Police to release information on portable devices use to extract information from people's personal cell phones, according to a release. The ACLU has demanded information on the controversial surveillance equipment for three years, and a Freedom of Information Act request confirmed the device's existence. The devices can quickly download data from cell phones.

Apple Is Least Green Tech Company

Greenpeace rated Apple today as the “least green” of big, green league technology companies, according to The Guardian UK. The environmental group cited Apple's reliance on dirty, coal-powered energy to power its data centers.

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