The topic could include a discovery and its application or a societal implication. If possible, limit your answers to chemistry-related topics but if the topic is interesting enough, then any other field of science will do. The topic that I intend on choosing is the synthesis of a superheavy metal, however I am not sure if that has any actual real-world application.
I think an article about food safety or food production would be interesting as well as completely relevent, especially in light of the recent egg contamination/recall as well as other food safety concerns in other areas. What are the potential harmful effects of of the chemicals used in food production? Do the benefits out weigh the risks? What kinds of chemical options do farmers have?
I agree with #3 - anything to do with the environment of course would be an excellent issue to really help students think through what is happening to our world and possible outcomes. Would any topic to do with space fit your requirements? What about recent discoveries about supposed life on Mars and the existence of water there? Of course, you can always return to the old chestnut of scientific advances in the area of cloning and the human genome.
Interesting assignment. I'll give you a few ideas from recent events that you might want to consider for your article.
First, there was a recent report about the salinity, acidity and Ph levels of the world's oceans, and how it is affecting species, coral reefs and the ecosystems there.
Secondly, you might consider a 2009 experiment where a team of researchers at Lawrence-Berkeley Laboratories successfully created a pair of superheavy element 114 atoms. Only the second time in history that this has happened, although the atoms self-destructed in less than a second.
Lastly, you might consider an experiment that confirmed that BPA in plastic bottles has a damaging effect on humans, confirming earlier fears. This might change how plastics are made or if they are going to be used in the future for bottling water, sodas and milk.
I am not quite sure what exactly you are looking for but a topic like nuclear energy may be one of the topics you may include in your science article.