If history proves correct, Magicicada Brood II will emerge this spring after living underground for 17 years.
In many places along the Eastern Seaboard — from North Carolina to Connecticut — the cicadas will fill the skies, breed and then quickly die. National Geographic points out that historically, this group, known as Brood II, has been so prolific that picking up their carcasses can sometimes feel like raking leaves in the fall.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency could soon issue a final ruling that aims to force oil companies to replace E10, gasoline mixed with 10 percent ethanol, with E15.
This move could come just as widespread support for ethanol, which is made from corn, appears to be eroding.
Mike Mitchell was once a true believer in ethanol as a homegrown solution to foreign oil imports. He owns gas stations, and he went further than most, installing expensive blender pumps that let customers choose E15, E20 and all the way up to E85.
When Melissa McCann (left) suffered a stroke in 2007, her twin sister, Terry Blanchard, helped her make a full recovery. McCann is now back to work as a flight nurse with Life Flight at the Eastern Maine Medical Center in Bangor.
Credit David Wright/Redux Pictures for NPR
Doctors think an abnormal hole between the two upper chambers of McCann's heart allowed a blood clot to move to her brain and cause her stroke.
Most people (including a lot of doctors) think of a stroke as something that happens to old people. But the rate is increasing among those in their 50s, 40s and even younger.
In one recent 10-year period, the rate of strokes in Americans younger than 55 went up 84 percent among whites and 54 percent among blacks. One in 5 strokes now occurs in adults 20 to 55 years old — up from 1 in 8 in the mid-1990s.