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Water Use Declining as Natural Gas Grows

Water Use Declining as Natural Gas Grows

As the U.S. has undergone a rapid and massive shift to natural gas from coal, one benefit has gone almost entirely overlooked: the amount of water needed to cool the nation’s power plants has dropped substantially. The widespread adoption of hydraulic fracturing (fracking) technology has led to dramatically higher natural gas production in the … Read More

U.S. Summers Bringing More and More Heat

U.S. Summers Bringing More and More Heat

It’s officially summer! We have now passed the points that mark the traditional start to summer (Memorial Day), the meteorological start (June 1), and now the astronomical start, or summer solstice (June 21) — so break out those flip-flops and beach towels! Though June, July, and August usually bring the heat, for parts of the country spring felt … Read More

Will The West Ever Be Able To Live With Fire?

Will The West Ever Be Able To Live With Fire?

Scientific progress and more than a century of living with wildfire have boosted Western resilience to the threat. But improvements in how wildfire dangers have been managed have fallen far short of the reimaginations of landscapes that are needed. “We’ve made good progress, but not good enough,” Jan van Wagtendonk, a retired Yosemite National Par… Read More

Across U.S., Heaviest Downpours On The Rise

Across U.S., Heaviest Downpours On The Rise

Record-breaking rain across Texas and Oklahoma this week caused widespread flooding, the likes of which the region has rarely, if ever, seen. For seven locations there, May 2015 has seen the most rain of any month ever recorded, with five days to go and the rain still coming. While rainfall in the region is consistent with the emerging El Niño, the… Read More

Since First Earth Day, U.S. Temps Have Been On the Rise

Since First Earth Day, U.S. Temps Have Been On the Rise

It’s been 45 years since the first Earth Day was celebrated in 1970, and since that time, average temperatures have been rising across the U.S. This Climate Central interactive graphic shows a state-by-state analysis of those temperature trends. Average temperatures across most of the continental U.S. have been rising gradually for more than a… Read More

Winter Is Losing Its Cool

Winter Is Losing Its Cool

Hearing about climate change may bring heat waves and sweltering summers to mind, but in most regions in the U.S., winter temperatures are also on the rise. In spite of last year’s East Coast blizzard and polar vortex, winters have, on average, been getting warmer since the 1970s. One of the starkest examples of this is the overall drop in nights … Read More

A Country Divided by Seasons and Warming

A Country Divided by Seasons and Warming

The U.S. is no stranger to differences among its sometimes bickering states, so perhaps it’s no surprise that even global warming finds itself with some regional rivalries. A Climate Central analysis of regional and seasonal temperature differences in the contiguous U.S. since 1970 reveals a country divided along temperature lines, just as it is i… Read More

Twisters Past and Present: Interactive Tornado Tracker

Twisters Past and Present: Interactive Tornado Tracker

The tracker plots tornado reports from the Storm Prediction Center in Norman, Okla., and is updated frequently to capture breaking events. This tracker shows reported tornadoes, not confirmed tornadoes. The National Weather Service conducts damage assessment surveys after tornadoes are reported to determine if a tornado actually touched down, and i… Read More