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Extra! Food Prices Soar In Venezuela

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El Tiempo, August 18, 2015

An already critical economic situation is spiraling out of control in Venezuela, with newspaper El Tiempo reporting that "the word "cheap" is disappearing from the Venezuelan vocabulary."

In the northern city of Puerto La Cruz, a kilo of tomatoes or onions can cost a whopping 400 bolivars ($63), double what it used to be, while bell peppers sell for 350 bolivars ($55) per kilo. A few days ago, the newspaper reported that the price for a carton of eggs had increased by 30% in just one week to about 700 bolivars ($110).

While the cost of basic goods can vary widely from week to week, people queue for hours to get their hands on "regulated products," whose prices the government caps. On El Tiempo"s front page, shoppers are pictured waiting in long lines to buy the offers of the day, namely detergents, dishwashing liquid and toilet paper. "Tomorrow, it could be something else," the reporter writes.

ABOUT THE SOURCE: El Tiempo is a regional newspaper from Venezuela's northern city of Puerto La Cruz. It was founded in 1958.

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Life On "Mars": With The Teams Simulating Space Missions Under A Dome

A niche research community plays out what existence might be like on, or en route to, another planet.

Photo of a person in a space suit walking toward the ​Mars Desert Research Station near Hanksville, Utah

At the Mars Desert Research Station near Hanksville, Utah

Sarah Scoles

In November 2022, Tara Sweeney’s plane landed on Thwaites Glacier, a 74,000-square-mile mass of frozen water in West Antarctica. She arrived with an international research team to study the glacier’s geology and ice fabric, and how its ice melt might contribute to sea level rise. But while near Earth’s southernmost point, Sweeney kept thinking about the moon.

“It felt every bit of what I think it will feel like being a space explorer,” said Sweeney, a former Air Force officer who’s now working on a doctorate in lunar geology at the University of Texas at El Paso. “You have all of these resources, and you get to be the one to go out and do the exploring and do the science. And that was really spectacular.”

That similarity is why space scientists study the physiology and psychology of people living in Antarctic and other remote outposts: For around 25 years, people have played out what existence might be like on, or en route to, another world. Polar explorers are, in a way, analogous to astronauts who land on alien planets. And while Sweeney wasn’t technically on an “analog astronaut” mission — her primary objective being the geological exploration of Earth — her days played out much the same as a space explorer’s might.

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