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The Week Unwrapped: Alcohol pricing, #JordanToo and coastal retreat

Has Scotland’s minimum drink price failed? Has Jordan reached a tipping point for women’s rights? And will seaside towns be abandoned to the waves?

Olly Mann and The Week delve behind the headlines and debate what really matters from the past seven days.

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In this week’s episode, we discuss:

Alcohol pricing

A new report on the effects of setting a minimum price for alcohol in Scotland in 2018 suggests that the heaviest drinkers didn’t cut their alcohol intake and the poorest of them reduced their spending on food and heating to pay for the higher drink prices. Other studies have found more positive effects, but after alcohol-related deaths rose during the pandemic, the Scottish government is coming under pressure to rethink its approach.

#JordanToo

A physics professor at one of Jordan’s leading universities has been suspended after being accused of sexual harassment by several female students. The case has prompted an outpouring of support for the women on Twitter and widespread media coverage, an unusual development in Jordan, a country in which women still play a relatively small role in public life.

Coastal erosion

Sir James Bevan, the chief executive of the Environment Agency, said this week that Britain must face up to the fact that many coastal towns and villages cannot be defended from coastal erosion. Instead, he said, local and national government – as well as individuals – will have to prepare for a future in which some homes are abandoned to the sea, or proactively demolished. Is this a sensible way to prepare for an uncertain future – or a defeatist approach to a solvable problem?

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