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‘Urgency of Climate Change’ to Debut as Legal Defense

‘Urgency of Climate Change’ to Debut as Legal Defense

As protests go, Ken Ward’s and Jay O’Hara’s daylong blockade of a coal delivery was low-key. There were no kerfuffles involving authorities and nobody was arrested -- the men learned of criminal charges later by mail. But the duo’s trial, scheduled to begin Sept. 8 in a Massachusetts district court, is shaping up as a high-profile affair, featuring… Read More

Crowdsourced Photos Provide Drought Snapshots

Crowdsourced Photos Provide Drought Snapshots

On May 24, a roiling dust cloud enveloped a desolate stretch of road in Prowers County, a rural county in southeast Colorado. The county and surrounding area had been deeply mired in drought for more than 2 years and the photo bore proof of just what drought looked like to its residents. The short note accompanying the photo added more context: “Ph… Read More

Hot and Getting Hotter: Heat Islands Cooking U.S. Cities

Hot and Getting Hotter: Heat Islands Cooking U.S. Cities

Cites are almost always hotter than the surrounding rural area but global warming takes that heat and makes it worse. In the future, this combination of urbanization and climate change could raise urban temperatures to levels that threaten human health, strain energy resources, and compromise economic productivity. Summers in the U.S. have been … Read More

87 Cities, 4 Scenarios and 1 Really Hot Future

87 Cities, 4 Scenarios and 1 Really Hot Future

Global temperatures are rising, but nothing brings global warming home to people like a really hot summer day — those few days a year when it actually feels like the planet is boiling over. But what if those rare sweltering days, over 90° or 100°F, were not so rare and began to dominate summers? That could happen if carbon emissions continue … Read More

Tornado Outbreaks Could Have a Climate Change Assist

Tornado Outbreaks Could Have a Climate Change Assist

Days with more tornadoes have become more common over the past 60 years, a trend that new research says could have a climate change connection. Understanding the connection between climate change and tornadoes, if any, is one of the most fraught areas of research. But a study released Wednesday posits that changes in heat and moisture content in t… Read More

Determining Methane Leaks Is Key to Climate Goals

Determining Methane Leaks Is Key to Climate Goals

If President Obama’s Clean Power Plan is going to work, lots of things will have to fall into place. Perhaps the most important is the reduction in greenhouse gases that is expected from increased use of natural gas to generate electricity. Under the plan, which aims to reduce electricity sector emissions by 30 percent by 2030, the EPA projects … Read More

Has Your City Reached its Peak Heat Yet?

Has Your City Reached its Peak Heat Yet?

Statistically, the hottest time of year in the continental U.S. comes in mid-July, a few weeks after the sun reaches its highest point in the sky on the summer solstice. This year the solstice was on June 21. But that mid-July peak heat is just a national average: if you look at smaller regions, the peak temperature might come earlier (that’s true… Read More

Late July Chill Helps Set Record Lows Across the East

Late July Chill Helps Set Record Lows Across the East

Folks across the eastern U.S. could be forgiven for thinking they’d pulled a Rip van Winkle and woken up in October on Wednesday morning. Temperatures dipped down overnight into the 60s, 50s and even 40s, setting record lows left and right. The chill in the air comes courtesy of yet another bout of cool Canadian air that dipped down over the area… Read More