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Russia And Ukraine Mark Victory Day; A Landslide Blocks An Alaskan Road; Conservationists Keep Tabs On Whales Near New York. Aired 4-4:10a ET

Aired May 10, 2022 - 04:00:00   ET


CARL AZUZ, CNN 10 ANCHOR: Hi. I`m Carl Azuz. Welcome to the show.

May 9th is a holiday in Russia. Victory Day commemorates the defeat of Nazi Germany in World War II and it typically features a huge parade of troops

and military equipment in the Russian capital.

This year, Russian President Vladimir Putin said NATO, an alliance of European and North American countries, had been increasingly threatening

Russia. And though he didn`t mention Ukraine by name, President Putin described Russia`s actions there as a preemptive strike against NATO

expansion. Ukraine is not a member of NATO, but it said in the past it wanted to be.

That nation also marked Victory Day. Ukraine was part of the Soviet Union in 1945, one of the allies that defeated Germany and Ukrainian President

Vladimir Zelenskyy said his country would never forget what its ancestors did in World War II, adding that very soon, there would be two Victory Days

in Ukraine and none in Russia.

Meantime, U.S. President Joe Biden said another million dollars` worth of American weapons and field equipment was on the way to Ukraine and he asked

Congress to approve $33 billion in arms and aid for the Eastern European country, in addition to the $13.6 billion that the U.S. approved in March.

The U.S. leader said Ukraine`s international partners have to keep weapons flowing to help the country succeed, but critics of U.S. government

spending have questioned why America is giving Ukraine arms instead of selling them to the country.

Russia has accused the U.S. of fighting a proxy war in Ukraine when a nation isn`t directly involved in battle, but it supports a side that is. A

former U.S. ambassador denies that, saying America is helping Ukraine defend itself against a direct Russian attack.

One specific part of Ukraine that`s been targeted is its infrastructure. A Ukrainian official says Russia wants to stop Ukraine`s railways from being

used to transport weapons and humanitarian aid.


SCOTT MCLEAN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The train from Kyiv takes about 25 minutes to reach the Irpin River. But this is the first

time in almost two months that a passenger train has actually been able to roll across the bridge that spans it. One of two rail bridges here has just

been rebuilt. The other is still impassable. A vital link between Kyiv and the bombed-out Irpin suburb was destroyed as Russian troops try to advance

toward the capital.

Ukrainian railways says it`s lost access to 20 percent of its network, due either to Russian occupation or Russian bombs. They`ve cut off access to

long stretches of track. Orange vested workers have been quietly repairing this span for weeks, ever since the Russians finally retreated.

OLEKSANDER PERTSOVSKYI, UKRAINIAN RAILWAYS: It`s effectively less than four weeks, which normally would take months and months of civil

engineering work, planning, projecting. So, now, like now when the situation is stopped, everyone works 24/7.

MCLEAN: The railway has been an indispensable tool and getting supplies in and people out of the most dangerous areas. But it`s also been a huge

target for Russian bombs. Repairing the damage is dangerous work.

The railways says that well over 100 rail employees have died since the war began, some of those have been fighting on the front lines but many others

said they`ve been just showing up for work.

PERTSOVSKYI: Every morning, railway people are not asking themselves whether to go to work or not, this is their duty.

MCLEAN: But whatever damage is done won`t last long. The army of Ukrainian rail workers is even bigger than Ukraine`s actual active duty military.

Despite the danger, they`re here to stay.

IVAN GARMONOVYCH, RAILWAY WORKER: Where I am going to go? I work here. I`m not going anywhere.

MCLEAN: Staying put so Ukraine can keep moving.



AZUZ (voice-over): Ten-second trivia:

Which of these places occupies the greatest area?

Alaska, Caspian Sea, Iran or Mongolia?

It`s not just the biggest U.S. state, Alaska`s 665,000 square miles makes it larger than many countries.


AZUZ: There`s one main road running in and out of the Lowell Point community in southern Alaska. It`s a resort area that`s popular with

tourists and, well, some folks are getting a little extra time there.

No one was hurt last Saturday when a landslide blocked the road connecting Lowell Point to the city of Seward. It reportedly started after a single

boulder rolled down onto the street and after that was followed by rocks, rubble, dirt and trees.

A 300-foot-wide pile cut off land transportation, so people looking to get around it had to use a boat. A woman who owns a rental property in Seward

says this commonly happens on Lowell Road.

The landslide still isn`t stable. The state government has sent geologists to the area to determine when it`s safe enough to start cleaning up the

road before it can reopen.

On another American coast, developers and conservationists are trying to build renewable energy facilities without disturbing wildlife. According to

North Carolina State University, renewable power sources typically take up more space than fossil fuel plants and that can destroy habitats block

animals travel routes and in the case of offshore wind turbines threaten birds in the air and marine life below the surface. What can be done about



JULIA CHATTERLEY, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): New York`s waterways may be best known for skyline views and crowded shipping lanes, yet these busy

waters also harbor a rich community of marine mammals.

Local whale species include the iconic humpback, fin whales and the endangered North Atlantic right whale. These photographs captured thanks to

a multi-year aerial survey conducted by Tetra Tech and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation.

HOWARD ROSENBAUM, OCEAN GIANTS DIRECTOR, WILDLIFE CONSERVATION SOCIETY: Right off of our shores, you know, in less than the average distance that,

you know, a New Yorker or someone from the tri-state area would commute, these great whales are here.

CHATTERLEY: Wildlife Conservation Society scientist Howard Rosenbaum studies the whale population here in the New York Bight, the area between

Long Island and the New Jersey coast.

His mission: to use the latest research methods to protect the whales.

ROSENBAUM: This is one of the busiest urban waterways on the planet and they face threats such as, you know, impacts from shipping which could

include ship strikes or ocean noise incidental entanglement and fishing gear.

These areas in the New York Bight along the east coast, you know, under this administration are slated for extensive renewable energy development

which the planet needs. We just want to make sure that it`s done with the best environmental and management practices possible so that wildlife and

renewable energy can co-exist.

CHATTERLEY: In partnership with Norwegian company Equinor which has a major offshore wind project in New York and the Woods Hole Oceanographic

Institute, the WCHS has deployed two acoustic buoys to detect whale calls in real time.

ROSENBAUM: If you can imagine when a whale vocalizes in the New York Bight, like for example a North Atlantic right whale, we can actually

detect those animals. I can get an alert on my cell phone and when that happens at a certain level right now, the National Oceanic Atmospheric

Administration is requesting ships to slow down.

CHATTERLEY: In the future, Rosenbaum says this alert system could be used to mandate boat slowdowns or to directly alert developers and shippers to

the presence of whales, so that they can pause noisy or potentially harmful activities.

ROSENBAUM: It`s a great tool and a great use of the technology that we can begin to use and harness the power of that to help better protect whales.

Rosenbaum`s team also takes and analyzes genetic samples from the whales in order to understand more about how this population connects to others like

how they feed and breed.

ROSENBAUM: We`re also trying some new work which is called Environmental DNA, or EDNA, and with that, we`re actually able to detect whale presence

and what they`re eating just by collecting a water sample.


AZUZ: For 10 out of 10, when people tell Brittany Davis, whoa, that is the tallest dog I`ve ever seen, they ain`t lying. This is the tallest dog on

the planet, according to Guinness World Records, and the extra great Great Dane lives with a family in Texas.

His name is Zeus. He`s two years old. His water bowl is the kitchen sink. He does occasionally steal people food off the kitchen counter because at

more than three feet five inches tall, he can.

I guess if the world`s biggest dog is actually great. It kind of makes you want to avoid boxers, fence in the bulls, respect the saints, feel sorry

for blues, freshen up Rottweilers, play with the toys, shoe the rats and if you get lost, seek out a pointer, because if the world is going to the

dogs, you don`t want to stay malamute when it comes to finding ciao.

Today`s shout-out goes out to Jackson Middle School. Hello to everyone watching in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Our YouTube Channel is the one and only place to request to mention and you got to be at least 13 years old.

I`m Carl Azuz, for CNN 10.