Today’s quick hits, Nov. 19, 2020

Rural infections hit another record: For the eighth week in a row, the number of Covid-19 infections in rural America set a record. For the week ended Nov. 14, there were 195,795 new cases, up 36 percent from the previous week. (Daily Yonder)

A ‘permission slip’ for logging: The U.S. Forest Service, a USDA agency, finalized a rule that allows it to use “categorical exclusions” to bypass environmental laws for projects of up to 2,800 acres, or 4.4 square miles. Critics called the rule a “permission slip” for logging and road building. (Washington Post)

Food insecurity on the rise: New data from the Census Bureau indicate that less than half of U.S. households with children are “very confident” they can afford to buy enough food over the next four weeks. (Center on Budget and Policy Priorities)

Betting on coronavirus is alleged: A wrongful death lawsuit against Tyson Foods alleges that the manager of its Waterloo, Iowa, packing plant organized a betting pool on how many employees would test positive for Covid-19. (Iowa Capital Dispatch)

The bamboo solution: The UN Food and Agriculture Organization and the International Bamboo and Rattan Organization signed a five-year agreement to scale up production of the fast-growing tropical plants to reduce rural poverty, increase carbon sequestration, and reduce the carbon footprint of the construction industry. (FAO)