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Mexico-U.S. Tariff Negotiations; British Prime Minister to Resign; Donald Trump in Ireland; Australia Newsroom Raid; Arctic Ice Shelf Threatened from Above and Below; Chernobyl Sees Tourism Boost Thanks to TV Show. Aired 12-1a ET
Aired June 7, 2019 - 00:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[00:00:00] JOHN VAUSE: Progressed but no deal, not yet as the tariff deadline draws near, Mexico deploys troops to the border with Guatemala. A sign they're willing to yield to the president's demand to do more to stop the flow of migrants crossing into the U.S. illegally.
In the coming hours, Teresa May will make it official resigning as the leader of the Conservative Party. That will be the starting gun in the race to replace her as prime minister. The prime minister who will lead Britain out of the E.U.
Plus, a CNN exclusive from the Arctic where a threat from beneath is melting the ice and affecting us all.
Hello. Welcome to all of our viewers joining us all around the world. Great to have you with us.
I'm John Vause. You're watching CNN NEWSROOM.
Well, faced with a threat to impose steadily rising tariffs on Mexican imports, the Mexicans says it will send as many as 6,000 guard troops to the country's border with Guatemala. A show of force intended to immediately reduce the number of Central Americans heading north becomes as Mexico faces a Friday deadline from Washington, strike a deal on immigration enforcement or face a five percent tariff on all exports to the United States starting Monday.
CNN's Michelle Kosinski has more.
MICHELLE KOSINSKI: Well, after another day of lengthy meetings at the State Department at the White House, there's talk of there being some progress but still not enough. Although there's no hard indication that these tariffs against Mexican products will indeed go into effect on Monday.
Earlier in the day, we were hearing from a source not to expect a full-fledged agreement with Mexico saying that the U.S. was on the path of figuring this out. Let's see if the numbers at the border go down and Mexico can do more, giving us an indication that the U.S. might be willing to wait before it imposes these tariffs. However, the latest we are now hearing from the White House is that they are planning on moving forward with the tariffs. From the Mexican side, we hear that talks are continuing, that they're exploring options but that the U.S. is focused on immigration enforcement and that the Mexican side is focused on development, getting to the core problem of why people are leaving these countries to go through Mexico and into the United States.
That indicates that there is a gap there on thinking of what should be targeted in the near term. But for these tariffs to go into effect, the president needs to sign an executive agreement by Friday. Customs and border patrol need to sign paperwork by Friday.
Let's see if that paperwork is actually submitted and it seems only then will we have a real idea if these tariffs are more than just a threat and more than just theater to try to get Mexico to act more quickly.
Michelle Kosinski, CNN, the State Department.
VAUSE: Ryan Patel is a senior fellow in the School of Management at Claremont Graduate University. We're lucky to have him joining us from Los Angeles. Ryan, our thanks for being with us.
RYAN PATEL, SENIOR FELLOW, CLAREMONT GRADUATE UNIVERSITY: Of course. Always great to be on.
VAUSE: OK, mate. There are deadlines and then there are deadlines. There was almost the first round of tariffs likely to go effect meeting Monday, but there will be a time like before the impact is felt on the economy.
So how much time are we talking? How much time do we really have to reach an agreement? Are we talking days, weeks or months?
PATEL: Well, this is not like your library book expiration date. You know this is going to be -- you've got about 30 days.
I think what's going to happen is, you know if they can't agree -- it's looking like they're not going to be able to get to an agreement today. Again, I think the next 30 days.
The way they are actually moving toward an agreement in Mexico, again, continues to be showing a positive reinforcement that they are trying to do -- to solution to the border actually. To me, I think it's going to be 30 days.
I think what happens the next month makes us to 10 percent. You start to think about is this going to be a longer play? The short-term effect here, I think both sides can actually handle.
VAUSE: OK. There are those who argue that these tariffs will have little impact on U.S. consumers. It's part of an opinion piece from "Marketwatch".
U.S. imports from Mexico came to $372 billion last year, according to the federal government. So slapping a five percent tariff on them amounts to a federal tax hike of $19 billion. Total federal taxes last year, $3.3 trillion. So we're talking about a 0.6 percent tax hike.
That seems kind of complicit because if this concern is overblown, then why did a delegation from the auto industry appeal to the White House not to move forward with this plan? And given the complicit of trail in the southern border, it seems like this is a [00:05:00] compounded effect, not just simply a five percent one-off.
PATEL: Stop it. This is not just a numbers thing. Just listen to the consumers and look at what Toyota has come out and said and told internally about to their employees, there are going to be a billion dollars' potential lost.
GM is hurting at the same time. These companies -- these executives don't want to show these memos internally. This is the last thing that they want to do.
If it with was that simple, nobody would be saying or doing anything. Again, the auto industry, if you look at what Toyota has come out and said, this is not just a Toyota problem. This is a problem for the entire industry and that they're going to have -- and they've even mentioned in their reports in the 10k to Wall Street, I mean this is not something that they are taking lightly or either the rest of the auto industry.
The consumer's perspective, yes. I mean does five percent in the first 30 days mean very much? Can you feel? No.
But we're talking -- I'm talking about permanent change at 25 percent, changes behaviors of how people buy certain products. What do they use for alternatives and where do they go? And obviously loss of jobs.
VAUSE: Yes, a few hours ago, tariff ban, also known as the president of the United States was explaining why Republicans should fall in line and back his plan. Here he is.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: When you're the piggy bank that everybody steals and robs from and they deceive you like they have been doing for 25 years, tariffs are a beautiful thing. It's a beautiful world if you know how to use them properly.
Republicans should love what I'm doing because I view tariffs in two phases. Number one, it's great to negotiate with because people don't want to be tariffed for coming into the United States. They don't want that.
And number two, frankly, if they're gone, you make a fortune because all the companies are going to move back into the country.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAUSE: There's so much wrong with that statement. Where do you stop?
PATEL: Well, first he needs his own theme music to be a tariff man because he's definitely played that role very strongly. But the -- I don't even know where to start actually.
I mean the second part that all of the companies will come back, you don't know that a hundred percent. They may end up going in other countries as well, maybe still cheaper or not.
But I think for me when we're talking about using tariff as a tool, he's not using it as a tool anymore. He's using it as a weapon which becomes a threatening piece when you talk about setting precedents about how you do business going forward.
And again, this Mexico-U.S. thing, this is a bigger thing, macro level. In my opinion, you're using an economic tool for immigration policy, right. That is very, very unique in the history of what -- how tariffs have been used in the past.
VAUSE: Having said that though, there does seem to be some concessions coming from Mexico and negotiations in Washington. There's this plan to send 6,000 national guard troops to the border Guatemala.
"The Washington Post' is reporting the Mexican government indicated it's willing to make asylum changes for the sake of a coordinated regional approach to stem the flow of Central American migrants now flooding into the United States.
They say all bets are off if the tariffs go into place on Monday but still there's a movement here. So as a policy tool using tariffs like this, maybe using a hammer to crack a walnut but at the end of the day, the walnut is open.
PATEL: Yes. And to your point, you kind of feel like no one is even talking about the tariffs during these negotiations Mexico has mentioned multiple times. This has become bringing everyone back to the table.
Was it really the tariffs that got him to the deadline as you mentioned? Quite possibly but they're obviously not scared of the deadline because there's still no deal in place.
Again, when you talk about, if Mexico didn't have this kind of showing of support in these conversations, imagine where we would be right now. It would be almost like the U.S.-China. We're not even talking to each other.
So it looks like there's a solution. Looks like he's going to keep the panic a little bit down for not just, you know, executives at auto industry, the Wall Street, it's given some hope.
I think that's a really, really big sign for both, the Democratic Party and the Republican Party because, at this point, they're just waiting to see. VAUSE: Yes. I guess there's also -- if it does work in this instance though, what are the long-term impacts here? Also the damage to the relationship of forcing a country into action because of the threat of tariffs?
PATEL: There's repercussions for sure.
VAUSE: OK, Ryan. Thank you. Appreciate you being with us.
VAUSE: And a stark day ahead in British politics. Prime Minister Teresa May will officially hand in her resignation as Conservative Party leader. That will happen in the next few hours and will spark what has been simmering for some time now, the race to replace her.
Mrs. May will remain at number 10 until a new prime minister is chosen in place. That's expected the week of July 22nd.
And that many thought would give the Brexit party its first seat in parliament. Not so fast.
CNN's Anna Stewart is with us live. Early morning live shot. Anna, let's get to the results in a moment. But Teresa May setting out as party leader, we're off to the races now with 11 Conservative MPs looking in the mirror every morning and seeing the British prime minister. But this is shaping up I guess to be a battle over [00:10:00] the pros and the cons of a no-deal Brexit in many ways.
ANNA STEWART, REPORTER, CNN: It really is. And what a horse race, 11 currently in the standings.
And officially, the lead ship race starts on Monday. That's when nominations can begin.
But John, we have seen campaign videos already. It's really off to a start. Frankly, it was like as soon the pros resigned, possibly even before.
Now the front runners really are the Brexiteers like Boris Johnson, the former foreign secretary, like Dominic Raab, the former Brexit secretary. And that is largely because we're seeing huge sways of the population very frustrated that the party and the prime minister, in particular, have not delivered the Brexit that they voted for back in 2016.
Now, Teresa May resigns as party leader but as you say, there won't be any removal vans turning up in 10 Downing Street today because she has to stay as prime minister until a new Tour leader is selected and it does take some time.
How it works? The nominations begin on Monday. We expect 11 candidates to officially put themselves forward. They each need eight Conservative MPs now to support them.
And then there are series of secret ballots within the Conservative MPs. They whittle it down to two. And eventually, that then gets put forward to the wider Conservative membership for a big vote.
And we expect that all to sort of wrap up around the week of the 22nd of July which is actually when MPs are on their summer holiday. So at least, the new leader of this other Party will start a nice quiet week one would hope given how busy Brexit keeps us here. John.
VAUSE: Almost as quiet as it is there behind you at 5:00 a.m. in the morning. It seems the party, you -- the narrative here, it was going to win its first seed in parliament because it did so well in the E.U. elections just a few weeks ago.
But if this was a big moment, it came up short. Close but no cigar.
STEWART: Yes, the Barclay's favorite was for the Brexit Party to win. And frankly, John, that's why I am here. We could have seen the Brexit Party get its first MP parliament but they did lose out.
It was close. Labour took 31 percent on the vote. The Brexit Party took 29 percent.
And what is actually really interesting here is this seed which voted overwhelmingly for Brexit back in 2016, it has flip-flopped between the two main parties, Labour and the Conservatives and the Conservative Party got pushed here into third place fairly significantly.
So although the Brexit Party didn't win here, they took a huge chunk, a huge bite out of the Conservatives which just goes to show why a Brexiteer is likely to be the future leader of the Conservative Party because that's how people feel here.
VAUSE: All the way and no story really actually. Thank you, Anna. Talk soon. Peace out.
Well, the U.S. president will leave Ireland and head home in the coming hours bringing to an end an almost weeklong European trip. We saw him insult the mayor of London as well as the Duchess of Sussex, Meghan Markle.
A possible free trade deal with the U.S. and weighed into domestic British politics. At least it seems the entire Trump family except for 10-year-old Barron had a really nice trip. CNN's Matthew Chance has more.
MATTHEW CHANCE, SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: The British media once suggested he had a problem with stairs. It's how they explain Teresa May holding his hand in Washington. But this week, President Trump seemed fine stepping straight into Britain's floored politics.
Even before Air Force One touched down, he branded the critical London mayor a stone-cold loser. A name tag that couple of potential next prime ministers, including the British Foreign Secretary that had to greet Trump on the tarmac.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) JEREMY HUNT, BRITISH FOREIGN SECRETARY: President Trump saying what he thinks and catching people off guard is just part of the deal with President Trump.
CHANCE: Do you think it's inappropriate for an American president to intervene in British politics at this sensitive time?
HUNT: What is not appropriate is to focus on the small number of differences we have.
TRUMP: I know Boris but the endorsements didn't stop. I like him. I've liked him for a long time. He's -- I think he'll do a very good job.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CHANCE: Not necessarily a good thing for candidates in a country where Trump is almost as divisive as he is at home. Boris spoke with the U.S. president over the phone but politely declined the presidential meeting.
When we spoke earlier this year, he was uncomfortable with that close Trump image that could backfire.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHANCE: You have been described as Britain's Trump but with better hair.
BORIS JOHNSON, FORMER BRITISH FOREIGN SECRETARY: Not at all. Look, I think when I was foreign secretary of the U.K., I had good relationships with the White House, met the president a few times. I was very pleased to meet him as any foreign secretary would be.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CHANCE: Intervening in the domestic politics of other countries is usually seen as a huge diplomatic no-no. [00:15:00] Not at least because normalizing meddling could give the green light to others like Russia to do the same.
But this state visit to Britain isn't the first time that the U.S. president has appeared to step in on behalf of his political favorites. In fact, it's become a bit of a Trump trend.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: It's my honor to welcome Prime Minister Netanyahu to the White House. A very special man. He's done a great job.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CHANCE: On the eve of recent Israeli elections, the U.S. president recognized Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights, a controversial move which the White House denied was political but was seen as supportive of his friend, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that went on to win.
Back in Britain, Trump snubbed the leader of the main opposition party but reached out to Nigel Farage, the outspoken head of a Pro-Brexit Party before a highly contentious parliamentary election. Don't do unto others what you wouldn't like done to yourself. It's a key rule in international diplomacy and another one this president seems to have thrown out.
Matthew Chance, CNN, London.
VAUSE: CNN's International Diplomatic Editor Nic Robertson joins us now from Dubarry, Ireland. And Nic, the president, he is there but before wheels up for Washington, he'll have one more round of golf. It seems the entire Trump family has had a very good time in Doonbeg.
NIC ROBERTSON, INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR, CNN: Today may -- this morning may put a bit of a downpour physically literally on the president if he does venture out in the golf course. This is what happens if you don't have an umbrella here. This is a golf course right behind me.
The sun is coming up but the grey clouds are coming in as well. So the president perhaps will get a round of golf in this morning. That certainly seems to be part of his plan.
It's an absolutely beautiful place. Lovely sand dunes. That's what the links are built around.
The president bought this resort a few years ago, 2014. It was suffering at the time.
And what he's been able to do here is really build on the legacy of this golf resort that was seen by the local community as a way to help with jobs. The president really is helping with jobs in this area. And for that reason, we found on the streets of Doonbeg people are very appreciative of that.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ROBERTSON: Eric and Don Jr. Trump dropping into their dad's local a few minutes from his Doonbeg golf resort lapping up the love.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: How do you feel to be in Ireland?
ERIC TRUMP, SON OF DONALD TRUMP: Always great to be back here. And thank you, guys. Thank you so much. I appreciate it. I love seeing all the support coming in today, it's incredible.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ROBERTSON: It became a pub crawl.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It was a big shock. We didn't expect it. Suddenly this entourage came in the door and media, lights, flashlights.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ROBERTSON: The whole town near enough came out.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RITA MCINERNEY, ATLANTIC WAVE CAFE, OWNER: It was like a county final night.
ROBERTSON: Really? It's a big sporting?
MCINERNEY: Yes, it did. It just reminded me of kind of the team coming home, visiting on the pubs. And, you know, that's what it kind of reminded me of.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ROBERTSON: Rita McInerney runs a cafe in this tiny village. Population, 341 last census.
Folks here put the flags out for Trump a few days ago but support for the American president began aways back when he bought the failing Doonbeg golf resort in 2014, saving local jobs.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MCINERNEY: For me, like it's putting my niece and nephews from college. They both work there and it's a great spin-off for me and the cafe. And I own a golf resort as well so it's a great spinoff and as well as the guests.
ROBERTSON: It's keeping your family going?
MCINERNEY: Yes, the 310 people that are working there as well. They spend the local economy as well.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ROBERTSON: Up and down this Main Street, Trump is a success story. Ask Tommy Comerford, his family have owned this bar for four generations.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TOMMY COMERFORD, OWNER, COMERFORD PUB: When Donald Trump took it over before he was president, people said oh he would forget about the village. No, he didn't. He actually added and he has enhanced it.
ROBERTSON: Could you keep your pub going if there wasn't a Trump resort?
COMERFORD: No, not at all.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ROBERTSON: Now, there were a few protestors who did come out on that evening but really it was just a handful. And what you realize here is President Trump is on this big European trip and he is trying to sort of build these special relationships. Doonbeg seems to be the one place where he's had [00:20:00] a degree of success and people are paying the president bank here in a way that he likes with the loyalty. John.
VAUSE: Yes. I mean that's exactly what the Trumps like, they like people who are loyal to them and that's what they got in Doonbeg I guess.
Thank you, enjoy the rain. See you in the next hour.
Still ahead on CNN NEWSROOM, the head of state broadcasters says recent police raids were a clear attempt and intimidation by the government. So what does freedom of the press now look like down under? More on that when we come back.
VAUSE: The chair of the Australia Broadcasting Corporation has condemned the federal government after police raided their news offices. Here's part of the statement from Ita Buttrose.
On behalf of the ABC, she registered with the federal government a grave concern over a raid by the federal police on the national broadcaster. She says, "An untrammeled media is important to the public discourse and to democracy. It's the way in which Australian citizens are kept informed about the world and its impact on their daily lives." Ita went on to say the raid was clearly designed to intimidate.
And Damien Cave, the Australia Bureau Chief for "The New York Times". Damien, thanks for being with us.
DAMIEN CAVE, AUSTRALIA BUREAU CHIEF: Sure, my pleasure.
VAUSE: It seems Australia is now joining what is a growing list of countries around the world. Many of them modern established democracies where press freedom is under attack.
And it seems the only one who's really complaining there or speaking out are the reporters. It's not a lot of outrage among the public.
CAVE: No, it's true. And I think Australians have gotten very used to a culture of secrecy and a lack of transparency here frankly. And this is just the latest example but there are many other examples as well, in the courts, with declamation law, with all kinds of things. And so I suppose the public just isn't as outraged as some of us who work in the business.
VAUSE: Yes. The ABC says police seized, what, more than 9,000 documents. They review each one of them on a big screen in a conference room.
The ABC executive news editor, John Lyons, tweeted out this image we're seeing here. But what was really quite stunning in all of this, the warrant we saw were given, the authorities were given gave police the right to change, copy, or delete any of the material they saw fit in those files. That is an incredibly wide scope for the police to have.
CAVE: It's enormous. In addition to the documents, they were also -- the warrant included enormous teams of journalists. Journalists that probably actually have nothing to do with this story or may have had an extraneous e-mail connected to it were also caught up in this.
[00:25:00] I mean this is a really, really big fishing expedition. It's a very rare thing to see a whole bunch of police show up in a newsroom and sit there for eight hours going through notes, and e- mails, and every imaginable detail. It really looks quite a lot like intimidation.
VAUSE: That's the thing. I mean officially they say this is not about intimidating journalists. But at the end of the day, when you have like this, teams of police turning up, sitting in newsroom for hours and hours at a time, there has to be some kind of chilling effect.
CAVE: Absolutely. I mean I think not just for journalists but also for public officials who might have information about something if the government is doing wrong.
I mean one of the things that the public I think doesn't necessarily fully appreciate is this isn't just about journalists. This is about anyone who sees the government misbehaving and has something to say about it and wants change.
If they don't feel empowered to come to us in journalism, then things continue to go wrong for a very long time, possibly with bigger consequences for everyone.
VAUSE: Yes. Unlike the United States, there's no Constitutional amendment in Australia which protects free speech and protects journalists. But what Australia does have is a lot of laws preventing the sharing of confidential information in the context of terrorism and national security.
But from what we know about the information which is contained in these files, could anything realistically be seen as a threat to Australia's national security?
CAVE: I mean these stories were from a while ago. One from one year ago, one from a couple of years ago.
And these aren't issues of revealing operational details. These are issues that are embarrassing to government, possible war crimes in Afghanistan by Australian troops, possible attempts to expand surveillance powers by the government.
These are things that the government would prefer to keep secret. But it's hard to believe that there are actual issues of national security, so much as national embarrassment.
VAUSE: So national embarrassment does not come under the title of national security. But this is where the politics meet the reality.
And essentially what we're seeing, and we're seeing this in a lot of countries as well, this excuse of national security, national security which resonates with the public, journalists. And the politicians seem to get away with it.
CAVE: I mean ultimately it looks a lot to me like it's about control. And this is the same to the authoritarian regimes as it is in a lot of democracies that are moving in this direction.
The government wants to be the one that gets to say this is secret you don't get to know. They don't want to have questions asked about whether or not the public has a right to know or whether or not it's beneficial for the public to know.
The issue is we have the power to determine if this is secret and because this is labeled secret you shouldn't get it. And no matter what you think about what the information is, we're going to tell you that it's going to make you safer.
And sadly, a lot of the public buys into this. I mean many years after 9/11, we're still at a point where the public feels like issues of safety are of such importance that they're willing to give up a lot of rights or risks to democracy because of it.
VAUSE: Yes, we're out of time. But I guess at the end of the day, it's a question of oversight. Who has the oversight ultimately in all of these matters? It's a struggle. It's getting harder. Good to see you. Thank you.
CAVE: Thank you.
VAUSE: Coming up, a CNN exclusive from the Arctic. In a rapidly warming planet, scientists are studying the extent of a global threat now coming from a melting Arctic ice shelf.
JOHN VAUSE, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: Welcome back. I'm John Vause with an update on our top news this hour.
[00:30:36] British Prime Minister Theresa May officially resigned as Conservative Party leader on Friday. She remains prime minister until a successor is in place. This comes as the newly-created Brexit Party barely misses out on electing its first member of Parliament. The Labour retains a seat in a closely watching by election in the city of Peterborough.
Talks between the U.S. and Mexico on tariffs and immigration are set to resume on Friday. Mexico's foreign minister says there's no agreement yet, but he remains optimistic. The U.S. president has threatened tariffs, starting Monday, over illegal border crossings from Mexico; and Mexico now says it's heading troops to its southern border to stop the flow.
Chinese tech company Huawei is to build Russia's first 5-G wireless network. They signed the deal with Russia's largest mobile carrier as Chinese President Xi Jinping was holding talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin. It comes after the U.S. banned Huawei, citing security concerns.
One of the most dramatic consequences of climate change is the speed of melting of the Arctic ice shelf. Its fragile ecosystem is being hit by a one-two punch: warm air above the ice, warm water currents below. CNN's Arwa Damon has this exclusive report.
ARWA DAMON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): It's spring in the Arctic. Nature is waking up as the sea ice melts, warmed by 24 hours of sunlight. This year saw a record loss of sea ice in April across the Arctic, and this is where that ice comes to die. But the story of ice loss is more than just warming air.
TILL WAGNER, POLAR PHYSICIST, UNC WILMINGTON: I would lean towards trying to keep going a little further in.
MATTIAS CAPE, BIOLOGICAL OCEANOGRAPHER, UNIVERSITY OF WASHINGTON: OK.
DAMON: We're in the Fram Strait, far north in the Arctic Circle.
CAPE: So we're choosing this area, because this is an area where we have this warm water meeting the ice edge.
DAMON: Biological oceanographer Mattias Cape is one of a small group of scientists headed by polar physicist Till Wagner. The warm water they're talking about is the fast-moving Gulf Stream, originating in the Gulf of Mexico.
WAGNER: It's actually this warm water is at the surface as it comes up and then it drops under the ice as it goes into the Arctic Ocean. And that layer that's under the ice, that has been coming up closer to the surface and melting the ice from underneath.
DAMON: We know the oceans are taking the brunt of global warming we have caused. But the team wants to understand how the way the ice and water are interacting affects our changing world.
WAGNER: What we're trying to do is find ice that's representative of the area.
DAMON: And ice that doesn't risk breaking apart under our feet. With a polar bear guard on watch, the team works on the ice flows day after day.
(on camera): There are so many challenges when it comes to really understanding our planet's changing climate. It's a bit like trying to put together a puzzle whose pieces are constantly changing. Changing faster than the science and the studies can keep up with.
(voice-over): The team drove through the ice to measure thickness.
WAGNER: So we're starting to get a fairly good idea, and it has definitely thinned in this -- in this area, as well. It's basically thinned everywhere.
DAMON: Extracting ice cores that hold frozen clues.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oh, wow, look at this.
About a meter of ice core right here.
And inside this piece of ice, actually, is a little microscopic forest.
DAMON: Greenpeace ship the Arctic Sunrise is converted into a floating lab.
CAPE: All right. I can grab the first one.
DAMON: Melted ice-core samples come to life under the microscope. A kaleidoscope of algae and phytoplankton.
CAPE: So these sea-ice algae and phytoplankton, in general, are tremendously important for carbon drawdown. These -- they photosynthesize, takes in carbon dioxide.
DAMON: Phytoplankton don't just store carbon dioxide; they jumpstart the cycle of life. Feeding on the phytoplankton under the ice are zoo plankton which, in turn, feed small fish, feeding the bigger fish all the way up the food chain, including us.
[00:35:05] WAGNER: Exciting, yes. Yes, there's a lot there, and this is very different than what we've seen so far, actually, in terms of just the diversity of things that are in there.
DAMON: Initial data from hundreds of samples confirmed the team's expectations. Plankton, that critical source of ocean food, concentrates where the freshly-melted ice is.
WAGNER: This is crazy. How strong. This is 14 milligrams per liter. Really strong bloom.
CAPE: Yes. Located right at the ice edge. I mean, we did have sea ice around at that station, right?
This is, like, the hot devil water that sits at the bottom. It's just waiting to come up.
DAMON: Increasing ice melt is wearing down the cycle of life here and undermining nature's carbon storage system. And that's bad news for all of us.
(on camera): These waters in this region is among the most productive when it comes to the building blocks of ocean life.
WAGNER: There it is. DAMON: There it is. Polar bear tracks.
(voice-over): Increased melting of glacial and land ice from above and from below have recently led to doubling previous projections of sea level rise, to 2 meters around the world by the end of the century. That, coupled with the loss of sea ice, is not only going to deprive us of magical moments like this: beluga whales which rely on the food under the ice to survive. It will also deprive us of the riches the ocean now holds, riches we all depend on.
Arwa Damon, CNN, the Arctic.
VAUSE: Still to come, an abandoned nuclear site turned tourist attraction is seeing a boom in visitors. Why more people are now visiting Chernobyl. We'll explain why in a moment.
VAUSE: Well, it looks like a post-apocalyptic wasteland, but visitors are flocking to Chernobyl and the neighboring city of Pripyat, as a new television series tells the story of the nuclear disaster there more than three decades ago. CNN's Michael Holmes takes a closer look at the Ukrainian ghost town which is now getting a second lease on life.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm pleased to report that the situation in Chernobyl is stable.
In terms of radiation, I'm told it's the equivalent of a chest X-ray.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No. Chernobyl is on fire, and every atom of uranium is like a bullet.
MICHAEL HOLMES, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR (voice-over): Welcome to the new Chernobyl, transformed from a nuclear ghost town into a tourist attraction. Thirty-three years after an explosion sent clouds of nuclear material across much of Belarus, Russia and Ukraine and into Europe, the U.N. put the death toll from the explosion and cancer at about 4,000; but some studies put that number much higher.
[00:40:04] UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You can see him, but you can't touch him.
HOLMES: The success of the HBO miniseries "Chernobyl" has boosted the city's profile as a tourist destination. Companies offering tours of the site report a 30- to 40-percent rise in bookings since the series aired.
VIKTORIA BROZHKO, TOUR GUIDE: It's a beautiful place. You see that the nature returns and takes over and over; and that's what we can see. You can feel that it's very calm here. You can just feel the atmosphere. And this is actually the only one place, I would say, in Ukraine where you can really feel the atmosphere of USSR.
HOLMES: Now it's a ghost town, but Pripyat was once home to 50,000 people. Its Ferris wheel has never been used. It was scheduled to open on May the 1st, five days after the disaster.
CAROLINE MACIEL, TOURIST FROM BRAZIL: The way you see and you can relate when you see those empty buildings is just fantastic. You just feel like you connect with people that were actually here, and you can feel what they felt when they had to leave. It's a very cool thing to experience.
BROZHKO: We are here.
HOLMES: The area around the plant feels like a haunted wasteland, with vegetation encroaching on the abandoned site.
GARETH BURROWS, TOURIST FROM ENGLAND: Just seeing how nature is taking back all the buildings and all the roads and to see how everything is falling to pieces, I mean, Pripyat, from what I've seen so far, looked like it would have been a really nice town, actually, down on the river by the port there. It looked beautiful. But of course, it's uninhabitable now.
HOLMES: Some worry that Chernobyl could be damaged by its new popularity. They're concerned its impact could be weakened.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There are quite a lot of tourists already here, and it does kind of take away the experience of being in a completely abandoned town. So I think if more and more tourists will come here, that will ruin the experience, I think.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Five hundred.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Is it OK? Enough?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Boris (ph). Not enough. Money.
HOLMES: At least the souvenir stores at Chernobyl look set for brisk business for the foreseeable future.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Confirm lines (ph). Contain the spread of misinformation.
Michael Holmes, CNN, Atlanta.
VAUSE: We have this note. We have to say this, apparently. HBO, which aired and produced "Chernobyl," and CNN -- that's us -- share a parent company, Warner Media.
OK. If you plan on building a bridge any time soon, here's a tip. Make sure it's strong enough to hold cars. This is the scene in a village in the Russian republic of Dagestan after a bridge collapsed. Authorities say the structure probably too fragile, too weak, to hold the weight of four cars, which were parked on it at the time it came crashing down.
We're making fun of this because no one was hurt.
Thank you for watching CNN NEWSROOM. I'm John Vause. WORLD SPORT is next. You're watching CNN.
[00:44:22] (WORLD SPORT)
[00:57:05] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
[00:59:52] VAUSE: Progress, but no deal. Not yet. As the tariff deadline draws near, Mexico says it's willing to deploy troops to the border with Guatemala, a sign they're willing to yield to President Trump's demand to do more to stop the flow of migrants crossing into the U.S. illegally.
In the coming hours, Theresa May will make it official, resigning as leader of the.