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Andrea Thompson

Andrea Thompson

Editorial

Andrea Thompson is a Senior Science Writer at Climate Central, focusing on extreme weather and climate change. Previously, Andrea was a writer and reporter for Live Science and Space.com, reporting on climate change, weather and other science-related topics. She graduated from Georgia Tech with a B.S. in Earth and Atmospheric Sciences in 2004 and a Master's in the same subject in 2006. She attended the Science, Health and Environmental Reporting Program at New York University and graduated with a Master of Arts in 2006.

Most Recent News Entries:

Warming Means Nicer U.S. Weather, But It Won’t Last

Warming Means Nicer U.S. Weather, But It Won’t Last

As the world has warmed over the past few decades, climate scientists have increasingly sounded the alarm over the potentially catastrophic impacts that warming could have on the world’s weather. But in the U.S., that message may have been lost on most Americans because their day-to-day weather has actually become more pleasant, according to a new… Read More

March Continues Streak of Exceptional Global Warmth

March Continues Streak of Exceptional Global Warmth

As representatives of the world’s nations prepare to gather later this week to sign a landmark agreement to limit the human-caused warming of the planet, global temperature records continue to pile up. Not only was March 2016 handily the warmest March on record, according to data released Tuesday by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric… Read More

New Milestone: Earth Sees 11 Record Hot Months in a Row

New Milestone: Earth Sees 11 Record Hot Months in a Row

The past 11 months have been the hottest such months in 135 years of recordkeeping, a streak that has itself set a record and puts in clear terms just how much the planet has warmed due to the buildup of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. New global temperature data released on Friday by NASA put March at 2.3°F (1.28°C) above the 1951-1980… Read More

Unrelenting Winter Warmth Could Herald Alaska’s Future

Unrelenting Winter Warmth Could Herald Alaska’s Future

The first 100 days of 2016 were record warm for many spots around Alaska, continuing a pattern of warmth that has gripped the state over much of the last three years and looks to continue for at least the next few months. The prolonged period of decidedly unusual balminess — the result of a particular combination of climate factors (and a nudge … Read More

Will La Niña Follow One of the Strongest Ever El Niños?

Will La Niña Follow One of the Strongest Ever El Niños?

Back in November, El Niño reached a fever pitch, vaulting into the ranks of the strongest events on record and wreaking havoc on weather patterns around the world. Now it is beginning to wane as the ocean cools, so what comes next? It’s possible that by next fall, the tropical Pacific Ocean could seesaw into a state that is roughly El Niño’s… Read More

The U.S. Is Experiencing Its Third Warmest Year-to-Date

The U.S. Is Experiencing Its Third Warmest Year-to-Date

With a mild March following a record warm winter, the contiguous U.S. is experiencing its third warmest year-to-date in 135 years of record keeping, according to data released Wednesday by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The toasty conditions in the U.S. mirror those of the planet as a whole, which experienced its record… Read More

Shift to Dry Years May Bring More Drought to California

Shift to Dry Years May Bring More Drought to California

For three years, an area of atmospheric high pressure dubbed the “Ridiculously Resilient Ridge” parked itself off the West Coast, keeping California hot and dry for month after month and helping to usher in one of the worst droughts in the state’s history. Patterns similar to the ridge are happening more often now than they used to, a new study… Read More

Arctic Sea Ice Hits Record Low Peak, Again

Arctic Sea Ice Hits Record Low Peak, Again

It’s been a winter for the books in the Arctic. Capping off a season of sustained, mind-boggling warm weather and stunted sea ice growth, the annual Arctic sea ice maximum hit its lowest level ever recorded. That marks the second straight year that the winter maximum ice extent set a record low. “I’ve never seen such a warm, crazy winter in the… Read More

Pacific Ocean Pattern Could Predict U.S. Heat Waves

Pacific Ocean Pattern Could Predict U.S. Heat Waves

In the summer of 2012, a series of punishing heat waves roasted a large portion of the U.S. with record-breaking temperatures that helped spawn one of the most widespread and costliest droughts to hit the country in decades. Combined, the blistering temperatures and drought cost some $31.5 billion and led to dozens of deaths. The heat was so… Read More

2015 One for the Climate Record Books

2015 One for the Climate Record Books

The long-term warming of the planet, as well as an exceptionally strong El Niño, led to numerous climate records in 2015, including milestones for global temperatures, carbon dioxide levels and ocean heat, according to the World Meteorological Organization’s annual State of the Climate Report. “The future is happening now,” WMO Secretary-General… Read More

February, Winter Were Record Warm For Planet

February, Winter Were Record Warm For Planet

The evidence continues to pile up that the last few months have been an exceptionally warm period for the planet. On Thursday, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) released its global temperature data, which confirmed what NASA numbers had already shown: This February was the warmest February on record and the most … Read More

How a Monster El Niño Transforms the World’s Weather

How a Monster El Niño Transforms the World’s Weather

From crippling drought in southern Africa to a record number of February tornadoes in the U.S. Southeast, an exceptionally strong El Niño has been making headlines around the globe as it tampers with the world’s weather. While the event has begun its slow decline, those wide-ranging impacts will continue to be felt for weeks and months to come … Read More

February Blows Away Global Heat Record

February Blows Away Global Heat Record

Last month was far and away the hottest February on record for the planet, by a margin that has surprised even the climate scientists who closely monitor global temperature data. It was also the most anomalously warm month Earth has seen in 135 years of NASA record keeping, continuing an astonishing recent streak that could see 2016 set a new … Read More

The Fuel Behind Louisiana’s Torrential Rains, Floods

The Fuel Behind Louisiana’s Torrential Rains, Floods

Neighborhoods have been turned into lakes and roads into streams as record-breaking rain has fallen relentlessly on Louisiana and other parts of the Gulf Coast this week. The deadly flooding and eye-popping rainfall amounts — reaching above 21 inches in the worst hit areas ­— came courtesy of a slow-moving system pulling abundant moisture from the … Read More

Winter Tops Charts As Warmest on Record For U.S.

Winter Tops Charts As Warmest on Record For U.S.

On the heels of a record warm autumn for the contiguous U.S., winter has also topped the temperature charts. The news, announced Tuesday by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), may come as no surprise for those who experienced summer-like heat waves in Southern California or the often spring-like weather in the Northeast. It… Read More

March Miracle? El Niño-Fueled Storms Return to California

March Miracle? El Niño-Fueled Storms Return to California

El Niño-fueled storms have returned to California, but they won't come close to ending the drought.… Read More

Searing Heat Waves Could Become Annual Threat

Searing Heat Waves Could Become Annual Threat

The scorching, deadly heat waves that today strike only about once every 20 years could become an annual occurrence for more than half the world if nothing is done to curb emissions of heat-trapping greenhouse gases, a new study reported Tuesday. The work, detailed in the journal Climatic Change, also points to the worst heat waves of the future… Read More

Mild Winter Keeps Great Lakes Ice Cover Low

Mild Winter Keeps Great Lakes Ice Cover Low

This week, parts of Oswego County in New York got a stunning 3 feet of lake effect snow. It was a rare event for a February and one that can be pinned to near “rock bottom” ice cover on the Great Lakes, as one scientist put it. Ice cover on the lakes stood at a mere 12 percent as of Feb. 11 (compared to 63 percent at the same time last year) thank… Read More

UK Forecasters: More Warming in Store Over Next 5 Years

UK Forecasters: More Warming in Store Over Next 5 Years

Earth’s temperature will continue its steady climb thanks to global warming over the next five years, with 2016 likely to rival 2015 as the warmest year on record, according to an experimental forecast released this week by the U.K. Met Office. With its latest annual effort at what is known as decadal forecasting, the Met Office is predicting that … Read More

Warming Ups Odds And Costs of Extreme U.K. Rains

Warming Ups Odds And Costs of Extreme U.K. Rains

Parts of southern England and Wales were swamped with storm after storm after storm during the winter of 2013-2014, as roads turned into streams and fields into lakes. The relentless rains flooded thousands of homes and businesses and cost more than $700 million in damages. It was both the wettest January and the wettest winter ever measured at the… Read More

El Niño Is Here, So Why Is California Still in Drought?

El Niño Is Here, So Why Is California Still in Drought?

A parade of El Niño-fueled storms has marched over California in the last few weeks, bringing bouts of much needed rain and snow to the parched state. But maps of drought conditions there have barely budged, with nearly two-thirds of the state still in the worst two categories of drought. So what gives? The short answer, experts say, is that the… Read More

The Future of ‘Epic Blizzards’ in a Warming World

The Future of ‘Epic Blizzards’ in a Warming World

In case you haven’t heard, Washington, D.C., and other parts of the Mid-Atlantic region, are about to get walloped by a major storm that could bury the city in a record-breaking amount of snow. The storm is expected to bring snows that could top 2 feet in the D.C. area and has already resulted in thousands of cancelled flights. While snows may not… Read More

2015 Shatters Hottest Year Mark; 2016 Hot on its Heels?

2015 Shatters Hottest Year Mark; 2016 Hot on its Heels?

It’s official: 2015 was the hottest year on record, beating out 2014 by the widest margin in 136 years of record keeping, U.S. government agencies announced Wednesday. But this new record may not stand for long, as one of the strongest El Niños ever measured combines with the continued warming of the planet to potentially push 2016 to yet another… Read More

Warming Could Mean Major Thaw For Alaska Permafrost

Warming Could Mean Major Thaw For Alaska Permafrost

If you’d asked permafrost researcher Vladimir Romanovsky five years ago if he thought the permafrost of the North Slope of Alaska was in danger of substantial thaw this century because of global warming, he would’ve said no. The permanently frozen soils of the northern reaches of the state are much colder, and so more stable than the warmer, more… Read More

El Niño Heat Peaks, But Impacts Still to Come

El Niño Heat Peaks, But Impacts Still to Come

It looks like this El Niño — which will rank among the strongest on record — has passed its peak in terms of tropical ocean temperatures, but it’s not going away anytime soon. In fact, the biggest El Niño impacts on the U.S. are probably still to come. The country has already started to feel the influence of El Niño with a recent spate of storms… Read More