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Britney's Conservatorship Battle; Indian States Propose Two- Child Policy; World Health Organization Warns Of Rising Cases And Deaths; China's Economy Grows 7.9 Percent in Second Quarter; India's Most Populous State Proposes Two-Child Policy; E.U. Presents Bold Plan to Reduce Emissions 55 Percent by 2030. Aired 2-2:45a ET

Aired July 15, 2021 - 02:00   ET



ROSEMARY CHURCH, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: Hello and welcome to have you is joining us from all around the world. I'm Rosemary Church. Just ahead here on CNN NEWSROOM, deaths cases and hospitalizations are back on the rise. And the WHO warns the COVID pandemic is about to get a lot worse.

A big legal windfall Britney Spears. The pop star can finally fight a conservatorship battle with an attorney of her own choosing.

And civil Indian states consider a controversial to child policy. I will speak to an expert about what's prompting this drastic proposal.

Well as the push to get life back to normal grows more urgent in parts of the world global health experts are warning of serious setbacks in the pandemic. The World Health Organization says deaths are up again after falling for nine straight weeks. And COVID cases are rising as well with almost three million recorded worldwide last week. All the countries and dark red had dramatic spikes in their infection rates during that time when compared to the previous week.

In the U.S. the CDC is forecasting a significant rise in hospitalizations over the next month. They had been falling since April. Some of the other big hotspots include Indonesia, which just recorded its most daily infection since the start of the pandemic. More than 54,000 on Wednesday and nearly a thousand dead. State media says three quarters of the country's hospital beds are occupied.

In Argentina, the COVID death toll has now surpassed 100,000 and it's approaching five million infections. Health authorities in Belgium say cases have tripled over the past three weeks and about two-thirds are from the Delta variant. And the U.K. on Wednesday clock the highest number of daily infections since January. More than 42,000. That's despite its advanced vaccine rollout and ahead of England's plans to reopen on Monday.

CNN's Chief Medical Correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta says the alarming trend of rising cases coupled with vaccine hesitancy is a dangerous combination. And as the Delta variant spreads unvaccinated people are putting themselves and others at greater risk. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: Right now the numbers are going back up at the same time that the vaccinations are falling. So we're not vaccinating enough, about 48 percent, roughly half the country is fully vaccinated and we're seeing this trajectory line. So those trend lines are going in the wrong direction. What I'm worried about and I think what a lot of people are starting to worry about is given the Delta variant and how transmissible it is and we can contextualize that.

We are going to start to turn into a situation where you have not vaccinated and unvaccinated in this country, you're going to have vaccinated and infected. This is an unforgiving variant. It has a thousand times roughly the viral load according to some of these studies as compared to the original strain of COVID. So, we -- this is -- this is a -- is a call to say it is still within our reach, but we have to act during the summer months.


CHURCH: But despite that unforgiving variant, these French and Greek protesters are angry about their government's vaccine mandates. That's even though only healthcare workers in their countries are required to get the shots. Thousands of demonstrators marching in Athens chanted take your vaccines and get out of here.

And in Paris, riot police fired tear gas to protesters who toppled garbage cans and set fires. The French president announced Monday that people will soon need a vaccine certificate or health pass to go to popular gathering places.

Well, the situation isn't as intense in China, where the government now says half the population has received at least one dose of COVID vaccine. That adds up to more than 1.4 billion shots. According to the National Health Commission, it took just 10 days to administer doses to 10 million people. Some of the country's smaller cities have banned unvaccinated people from public places such as movie theaters, hospitals and government buildings.

Well meantime, the White House is trying to appeal to American teenagers bringing in popstar Olivia Rodrigo to promote COVID vaccinations.


CHURCH: The Drivers License singer met with President Biden and Dr. Anthony Fauci to kick off a new campaign, making videos for social media to answer questions teens may have about the vaccine. Rodrigo says she's happy to lend her voice to the course.


OLIVIA RODRIGO, ACTRESS, SINGER AND SONGWRITER: It's important to have conversations with friends and family members encouraging all communities to get vaccinated and actually get to a vaccination site. (END VIDEO CLIP)

CHURCH: Well, four Iranians have been charged in an alleged plot to kidnap a U.S. journalist critical of Iran's leadership and to forcibly take her to Iran. The indictment was unsealed Tuesday in a New York Federal Court. CNN's Brynn Gingras reports.


BRYNN GINGRAS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The FBI foiling in the legit Iranian government-backed plot to kidnap a U.S. journalist. And tonight these four men at the center of the movie like scheme still wanted.

MASIH ALINEJAD, IRANIAN JOURNALIST: The details were shocking.

GINGRAS: Masih Alinejad telling CNN this morning she was the target. U.S. attorneys with the Southern District of New York don't name her in the indictment. But prosecutors say the plan started around 2018 when the Iranian government offered to pay a lender shots relatives in Iran to lure her out of the U.S. When her family refused the plan allegedly picked up last year. The group of Iranian men led by an intelligence agent hired an American private investigator by falsely claiming they were looking for someone who owe debts, prosecutors say.

The team who are each facing a number of conspiracy-related charges instructed the investigator to track Alinejad, her family, even strangers and take "quality pictures so that we can see license plate on car and send two pictures in one video every hour." Adding he wants pictures of faces of everyone visiting the address, even if they are marketers and sales people.

ALINEJAD: When I saw the picture of myself, I got goosebumps because I was watering my sunflowers. They took picture of my stepchildren.

GINGRAS: They are also accused of researching how to rent a military style speedboat that could bring Alinejad to Venezuela then ultimately Iran. The U.S. attorney noting in her statement, where the victim's fate would have been uncertain at best. A woman from California who allegedly funneled money in the scheme was arrested.

Alinejad posted this video on Twitter Tuesday's showing a police presence outside what she says is one of many safe houses she and her family have lived in recent months. Her nightmare began eight months ago when she says the FBI alerted her to the plot.

ALINEJAD: And I have five million followers on my Instagram. I have one million on Facebook. What I do I give voice to these people.

GINGRAS: Alinejad says she uses social media to give voices to the women of Iran. Her activism and outspokenness of the regimes autocracy is why she and authorities believe she was a target. The Iranian government calling the claims baseless. This is not the first time that the United States has undertaken such Hollywood scenarios a spokesperson told CNN. The White House responding.

JEN PSAKI, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: -- though we categorically condemn Iran is dangerous and despicable reported plot to kidnap a U.S. citizen on U.S. soil.

GINGRAS: And you saw those wanted pictures. The four Iranian men are still on the run. The FBI not saying if they even know their current whereabouts. And as for that California woman, she was arrested and she has appeared before a judge pleading not guilty to the charges in the indictment. Brynn Gingras, CNN New York.


CHURCH: Masih Alinejad spoke to CNN's Jake Tapper earlier about this alleged plot, and how she thinks the Biden administration should deal with Iran.


ALINEJAD: I want to meet them. I left my homeland to come to America to be safe. And now I found out that even here in America, in the -- in the United States of America, I'm not safe because the Islamic Republic of Iran can easily hire someone here to kidnap me. It's not about me. I don't want Biden's administration to protect me. I want them to understand that this is the nature of the Islamic Republic. It's not about one Iranian American citizens here.

They're going to deal with a -- with a regime that easily, easily killed a 1500 people in Iran protests. And I just gave the voice to the mothers and fathers of those protesters. And that is why actually the government is scared of me. That is actually my crime. So what I'm trying to make it clear here that human rights should be the first agenda. The U.S. government should stand for universal values, for Western values. So They should not -- human rights under nuclear deal. That's my point.



CHURCH: Turning now to Afghanistan where government forces are suffering heavy losses, and putting up little or no resistance to the advancing Taliban, and we are hearing a strong warning from the U.S. president who launched the war on terror there more than two decades ago. Here's CNN's Anna Coren in Kabul.

ANNA COREN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Former U.S. President George W. Bush, who sent U.S. forces to Afghanistan 20 years ago after 9/11 says the decision to withdraw U.S. and NATO forces from Afghanistan is a mistake. He said the consequences of ending America's longest wall we "unbelievably bad for women and girls." Well, these comments come as the Taliban make even more gains across the country.

They have seized the major border crossing of spin boulders in the Kandahar province bordering Pakistan. This is the fourth border crossing the militants have seized in less than a month. As the Taliban target key infrastructure designed to choke the country and pressure the government. Well, meantime as the Taliban attempts a P.R. offensive to discredit CNN's exclusive reporting on the execution of nearly two dozen Afghan commandos surrendering the U.S. State Department has weighed in condemning the horrific actions of the Taliban as an atrocious Act.


NED PRICE, U.S. STATE DEPARTMENT SPOKESMAN: The video, which I shouldn't say we don't have any reason to doubt, depicts horrifying scenes. The killing, in this case, the slaughter of unarmed individuals is -- it's an atrocious act. It's an outrageous sight. And of course, we condemn it.


COREN: Well, CNN spoke to five eyewitnesses who all confirmed the massacre took place. And the Biden administration has launched Operation Allied Refuge to relocate thousands of Afghans who worked with the U.S. military. It's still not known where they will be sent while their visas are processed. But the White House has confirmed that flights will begin by the end of the month. Anna Coren, CNN Kabul.

CHURCH: And coming up in the next hour of CNN NEWSROOM. I will ask a human rights lawyer what needs to be done to protect women from repression in Afghanistan. So do stay with us for that.

The mystery surrounding the horrifying assassination of Haiti's president is growing. A retired Colombian soldier claims that men accused of killing Jovenel Moise were actually hired to protect him. A week after more Moise's death Haitians are paying tribute to their late president. Meantime the head of security at the presidential residence is now in police custody. An associate of Dimitri Herard tell CNN police told Herard the order to hold him "came from above." CNN's Matt Rivers has details of the investigation.

MATT RIVERS, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: The leaders of three different government organizations tasked with protecting the president and/or the places where he spends his time all turned down voluntary invitations for questioning by the prosecutor's office leading the investigation into the assassination of President Jovenel Moise. One of those three men, Dimitri Herard.

He leaves a unit tasked with protecting the presidential residence. We were able to speak to a close friend of Herard who says that he is innocent and that any suspicions of him are simply politically motivated. Here's a little bit of our conversation.


RIVERS: The President gets killed on Dimitris watch, why shouldn't he be a suspect?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm not saying that he should be a suspect. But the main thing is that he should be questioned and a potential suspect, yes, but the chain of command does not stop at Dimitri. This -- the chain of command it goes much higher than him. There are -- he has bosses and those bosses (INAUDIBLE) I don't see any of them, you know, being fired or being questioned or for that matter being detained. He's the only person until right now that's being detained. (END VIDEO CLIP)

RIVERS: So after all three of those men declined questioning, it's unclear exactly where the prosecutor's office will go next, what comes next but what is clear is that the investigation into this assassination of President Jovenel Moise is far from over. Matt Rivers, CNN, Port-au-France, Haiti.

CHURCH: A concession of sorts from Cuba in the wake of unprecedented protests. Restrictions on travelers bringing in food, medicine and hygiene products will be lifted and custom duties wave for the rest of the year. On Sunday, Cubans packed the streets in protest. Frustrated by the economic crisis and a lack of food and medicine.


CHURCH: Cuba's president has cracked down on protesters but has also said the government needs to improve conditions in poor neighborhoods.

Well, South Africa's National Defense Force is calling all reserve members to report for duty Thursday to help quell days of looting, arson and violence. Although the protests were triggered by the jailing of ex-President Jacob Zuma last week, it's evolved into an outpouring of anger over the economic inequality in the country 27 years after the end of apartheid. Warehouses and shopping malls are being ransacked.

But in a sign of public backlash, residents are now arming themselves to protect their property as the violence continues. CNN's David McKenzie has more from Soweto.


DAVID MCKENZIE, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): In the end, after the mayhem, there is nothing left for the looters to take.

It's almost incomprehensible what happened here. The alarms are still going off. This was the center of life in Soweto. It's like a bomb went off here. Everything is destroyed, everything is taken. And it took just a few hours.

The President vowed to arrest and prosecute those responsible. He called for calm but few listened. In Durban, city center left guttered. Aerial footage showing the sheer scale of destruction. In this food line, they are only allowed to buy 15 items each because there just isn't enough.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Our president Cyril Ramaphosa has failed the people and all his government workers that includes the army and the police have really failed us. And it's so sad to see that the communities that protect themselves.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We say no to looting of our own establishment.

RIVERS: Just describe what it has been like to try and defend this mall. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's been -- it's been hell. These guys that have been shooting at us for the last 48 --

RIVERS: Vigilantes did what the police did not. Nhlanhla Lux says they battled armed attackers through the night to save Maponya Mall. The pride of Soweto.

NHLANHLA LUX, SOWETO COMMUNITY LEADER: We said the men in Soweto will rise, will unite or come together and make sure that the business, the communities, the woman and children are protected.

RIVERS: Protected but now petronella is forced to buy bread from a truck.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Otherwise we're going to end up not -- actually we are going to end up not having food for the next coming days and weeks.

RIVERS: (INAUDIBLE) forced to pick through the debris and run to salvage anything from a pharmacy. But there was nothing left to save. David McKenzie, CNN Soweto, South Africa.

CHURCH: A bad case of the hiccup sends Brazil's President to the hospital. Why doctors thought it may have been something much worse will tell you their prognosis.

Plus, the legal victory Britney Spears secured in her fight to regain control of her finances.



CHURCH: More Powerful courtroom testimony and a big legal win for Britney Spears. The pop star now says she wants her father charged for abusing his role as the court appointed guardian of her finances and much of her life. CNN Stephanie Elam has the details.


STEPHANIE ELAM, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Britney Spears is one step closer to potentially taking back control of her life. Judge Brenda Penny granted the singers request to choose her own lawyer wasting no time. Former federal prosecutor Mathew Rosengart was in court on behalf of Spears.

MATHEW ROSENGART, BRITNEY SPEARS' ATTORNEY: We feel that today was a big step in the interest of justice.

ELAM: Judge Penny accepted the resignations of both Samuel Ingham, Spears' court appointed lawyer since 2008 and Bessemer Trust, a wealth management firm and the court appointed co- conservator of her estimated $60 million estate. Calling into court, Spears was emotional, sobbing as she spoke for about 20 minutes saying she wants to get her father Jamie Spears removed from the arrangement and charged with conservatorship abuse. Saying, "If this isn't abuse, I don't know what is." She added. I thought they were trying to kill me. Her new lawyer echoing some of her sentiments.

ROSENGAR: Pursuant to Britney Spears instructions, we will be moving promptly and aggressively for his removal. The question remains why is he involved? He should step down voluntarily, as that is in the best interest of Britney Spears.

ELAM: The last time Spirit spoke in court about three weeks ago, she railed against the conservatorship, calling it abusive, demoralizing and embarrassing. She also claimed she was forced to perform, take medication, including birth control and get therapy. Her fans have intensified their calls to free Brittany from what they deem a toxic situation. Gathering outside the courthouse as news spread of Spears' victory.

Before the hearing Spears gained some key support too. Her mother Lynne Spears said in court filings that Britney is able to care for herself and is in a much different place than when the conservatorship began in 2008.


ELAM: That's when multiple health and psychiatric issues landed Spears in the hospital that January. Her father maintains he's acted in the best interest of his daughter.

But critics of the arrangement argue that if Britney can work then she can also handle her own affairs.


ELAM: And in recent years, she's kept busy releasing several albums, headlining her Las Vegas residency and serving as a reality competition judge. All while under the conservatorship and has her mother's petition states earning "Literally hundreds of millions of dollars as an international celebrity."

(on camera): And Britney Spears making it clear she is not willing to be evaluated again to remove her father from the conservatorship and she does say that she wants Jodi Montgomery, the conservator of her person who's been with her for many years to stay on with her to help her transition back into the real world. Stephanie Elam, CNN Los Angeles.


CHURCH: And after the hearing Britney Spears took to Instagram saying she feels gratitude and blessed and she thanked her fans for their support.

Well, Pope Francis is now recovering from colon surgery at his residence in the Vatican. The 84-year-old was discharged from a Rome hospital on Wednesday after a 10-day stay. On his way home he stopped at the Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore to pray for the sick. The Pope says he is grateful for the successful procedure.

Resilient President Jair Bolsonaro is in hospital after a chronic case of the hiccups led to the discovery of an obstruction in his intestines. But we are told he won't need emergency surgery. He was sent in for testing on orders from the doctor who treated him after a stabbing in 2018. Shasta Darlington has more now from Sao Paulo.

SHASTA DARLINGTON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro transferred to a hospital in Sao Paulo on Wednesday after doctors found and intestinal obstruction. Bolsonaro took to Twitter calling his current medical issues the consequence of a failed assassination attempt from 2018 when he was stabbed during a campaign rally. The attack happened while he was being carried on the shoulders of a supporter. He suffered Knife wounds to the abdomen and was rushed to the hospital for emergency surgery.


DARLINGTON: It marked a turning point in his campaign as he posted pictures of himself from the hospital bed and he surged in the electrical poles. Since then he's had interventions to remove a colostomy bag, unblock his intestine, and for hernias. For this latest health issue, Bolsonaro was originally taken to a hospital in Brasilia to look into the cause of chronic hiccups and pains in the abdomen.

He'd been complaining about hiccups for over a week. On Wednesday, he tweeted a new photo of himself in a hospital bed with the caption, we'll be back soon, God willing Brazil is ours. All of this at a time when Bolsonaro is arguably facing the biggest crisis of his presidency. With his approval rating and an all-time low and a senate inquiry into his government's handling of the COVID-19 pandemic. Shasta Darlington CNN Sao Paulo.

CHURCH: China's economy is growing but not as much as expected. There have been some troubling signs in recent months. Coming up, we will take a closer look.

Plus, India's most populous state is proposing a bill to limit how many children couples can have. What that could mean for families with more than two children. That's next.


CHURCH: OK. Let's get a check on where U.S. financial markets could be heading in the coming days. Looking at Dow futures there just down .19 percent. NASDAQ futures up .15 percent and the S&P 500 future is down slightly. U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell told lawmakers Wednesday the economy is recovering from the effects of the pandemic. But surging demand will likely keep inflation high for the next six months or so.

Well, the numbers are out. China's economy grew almost eight percent in the second quarter compared to a year earlier. That's significantly slower growth than China reported in the first quarter when the numbers reflected how much the economy had slumped a year before when the coronavirus outbreak began. The second quarter growth rate was a bit weaker than expected but China is still on track to exceed its annual growth target.

So Kristie Lu Stout joins me now from Hong Kong to talk more about all of this. Good to see you, Kristie. So why is China's economy not growing as much as expected?

KRISTIE LU STOUT, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, there are a number of factors here. And it's an interesting picture of the world's second largest economy. China is maintaining economic growth but the rate of that growth is slowing down.


It was earlier today when China release its latest GDP figures for the second quarter. It announced that its economy have grow 7.9 percent in April to June quarter compared to the same period a year ago. Yes, that is far lower than 18.3 percent year-on-year growth that China had posted in the first quarter of this year. That is because China had bounced back from the initial shock of the coronavirus pandemic.

There are number of factors that are still feeling the growth that we have seen in this second quarter. You know, it returned to the services sector inside China as well as strong exports. But economists that we've been talking to at CNN are telling us that the Chinese economic growth story is indeed slowing down.


JULIAN EVANS-PRITCHARD SENIOR CHINA ECONOMIST CAPITAL ASIA: I think, really, the story here is that, actually, because the Chinese economy recovered very rapidly from the COVID-19 downturn, it is basically fully recovered. In fact, it's above its pre-virus trend. There is just a lot less room for it to continue to grow rapidly, so it's hitting against those constraints, and that is why we are starting to see those growth rates weaken quite considerably.


STOUT: And China's economy is facing a number of speed bumps. You have surging commodity prices as well as supply chain disruptions. On top of, that ongoing tension with the United States, the tech war, trade tension, as well sanctions being slapped on Chinese companies.

But an economist AXA Investment Managers who I spoke to this morning said that the biggest short-term risk to China's economy is actually the coronavirus, and outbreaks happening inside China. Take a listen.


AIDAN YAO SENIOR EMERGING ASIA ECONOMIST INVESTMENT MANAGER: The virus represents the biggest short-term growth risk. You mentioned the virus outbreak at the beginning of the year, around the Chinese New Year, more recently in Guangzhou.

If you have these types of outbreaks that are occurring on a periodic succession (ph), then that is certainly going to hold back the recovery of consumption recovering. (END VIDEO CLIP)

STOUT: Look, every edition of COVID-19 outbreak inside China affects household confidence inside China, domestic spending inside China, but is China still -- especially many industries that factor to the world, it affects the global supply chain as well. Back to you Rosemary. . ROSEMARY CHRUCH CNNN NEWSROOM:: Alright, great explanation. Kristie Lu Stout, many thanks, as always.

A controversial bill is being considered in India's most populous state in an effort to control its population growth. The proposal in Uttar Pradesh aims to discourage couples from having more than two children. A similar measure was announced in the northeastern state in Assam last month.

It comes as India is on track to become the world's most populous country in less than a decade. Both bills were proposed by lawmakers, from Prime Minister Narendra Modi's ruling party. The legislation in Uttar Pradesh says couples with more than two children would not be allowed to receive government benefits or subsidies and they would be barred from applying for state government jobs.

The bill says because of the state's, quote, limited ecological and economic resources at hand, it is necessary and urgent that the provision of the basic necessities of human life are accessible to all citizens.

Poonam Muttreja joins me now from New Delhi. She is executive director of the Population Foundation of India. Thank you so much for talking with us.


CHURCH: So, Uttar Pradesh, is the second Indian state to proposed legislation that limits a couple to just two children. What is your reaction to this push to control the population in this way?

MUTTREJA: I am very surprised that where there is declining birth rates in our country, including U.P., fertility is declining very fast and India, and U.P. is not exception. And then there is no population explosion. There is complete, miss -- this is based on complete misconceptions.

And, finally, I'd like to say that, we have limited resources, sure, so let's put the limited resources on what is -- gives the best results globally. And in India, there's evidence to show if you do invest in literacy for women, good quality family planning services with choice and at the door step of the women, you can reach the demographic goals that Bangladesh and many other neighboring countries of India and states within India have done. This is not the way to go.

CHURCH: Interesting. And as the proposal stands right now, couples currently with more than two children would not receive government benefits or subsidies and would be barred from applying for state government jobs. What sort of impact could that have on those families?


MUTTREJA: So it is -- the impact will be primarily on women and the poorest women who are actually not in jobs. There will be fewer people in jobs because 80 percent of the women are in the informal sector.

So it is not going to make much of a difference, even if fertility can be controlled through this method. The impact it will have is that there will be some women who lose jobs or people who lose jobs, because they did not have access to family planning services, or they did not have the agency to have fewer children,

Second, you know, by reducing nutrition and subsidies and so on, people are going to -- already undernourished, malnourished people which U.P. has a very high percentage of will be impacted.

And, finally, it is going to create -- it is going to create and target more poor women, minorities. It is just going to target Scheduled Tribe, the poorest in India, the Dalits and so on.

CHURCH: Now, India is expect--- India is expected to overtake China as the world's most populous nation in 2027 and the state of Uttar Pradesh alone has a population of 240 million people. So is there a need for some type of population control in that state and perhaps across the country?

MUTTREJA: You know, we need population stabilization, and if some people want to call it population control, for sure. But we need to stabilize the population and meet the unmet need.

See, India has an average unmet need for family planning, which is 3 percent -- 13 percent, sorry, 13 percent across the country.

Uttar Pradesh has a higher unmet need for family planning, which is women and families who wish to have fewer children but don't have access, incomes or ability, agency to access family planning services. It is 18 percent for U.P.

So, U.P. needs to invest on making family planning accessible, especially on the unmet needs for family planning, invest in literacy rates, which are really low, like most of North India. And South India has put example where they have invested in literacy, better family planning services that targeted those who really needed.

It is a low hanging fruit. You invest your limited resources and meeting the unmet need. There is a supply failure, not a demand failure. Women in U.P. and across the country, on average, less than two children, the data is 1.9 and this is government data.

CHRUCH: All right. Poonam Muttreja, Thank you so much for joining us.We appreciate it.

Well, still to come, the European Union sweeping plan to tackle climate change.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Europe is now the very first continent that presents a comprehensive architecture to meet our climate ambitions We have the goal, but now, we present the roadmap to how we are going to get there.



CHURCH: Oregon's bootleg fire is the largest of dozens of major wildfires burning so aggressively in the western U.S. Officials fear they could run out of resources to fight them. In response, the U.S. fire preparedness level is now at its highest point. The first time in a decade it is been raised so high this early in the fire season.

Officials blame climate change for the severe doubt drought and high temperatures fueling these fires.

The European Union says it has come up with an ambitious and detailed plan to cut emissions on the continent by half by the end of the decade with the goal of becoming carbon neutral by 2050, but getting all 27 member states on board will be a huge challenge.

We get more now from CNN Anna Stewart in London.

ANNA STEWART CNN REPORTER: If Europe is to become the first climate neutral continent in the world by 2050, a massive overhaul on climate policy is needed.

And the E.U. commission is proposing this. They are calling it the European green deal. It is a package of policies that will have huge implications for industries right across the block.

The cost of using non-renewable fuel could score for businesses in the E.U. due to higher taxes and also lower caps on carbon emissions.

To ensure that those businesses are not made less competitive than their non E.U. rivals, the commission proposal some tariffs on certain imported goods. They are calling for a carbon border.

There is a big focus on transport here. That accounts for over a fifth of the E.U.'s emissions, so no surprise there. Cars and vans are to be emission-free by 2035, which effectively means banning combustion engines and actually even putting hybrid cars on the endangered list.

Aviation and shipping are set to be taxed for using pollution fuels for the first-time. And IATA, which is the association representing airlines have told us that actually taxation, they say, is counterproductive. They say it could destroy jobs.

So, there is likely to be push back, also politically. Officials have told CNN that actually getting the E.U. commission is to agree to the deal is a struggle and this would need approval from the E.U.'s counsel and parliament to become law. De-carbonization is going to be more costly for some member states. They could oppose the plans at the E.U. leader level. And then in the E.U. parliament there are some MEPs who say it goes too far, this would make the E.U. uncontested, there are others who say the proposals don't go far enough.

Of course, any vote in the E.U. can also become a proxy for other divisive issues, from human rights to migration to the rule of law.

So this is an ambitious plan. It is one that is time-sensitive if Europe is to become climate neutral by 2050. But this plan could take years to be negotiated.

Anna Stewart, CNN, London.

CHURCH: And I am Rosemary Church. I will be back in about 15 minutes with more CNN Newsroom. World Sport is up next.