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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:

Picture This: Illuminating Lightning & Rare Texas Snow

Picture This: Illuminating Lightning & Rare Texas Snow

This workweek was a short one for those of us in the U.S., but it was still packed with plenty of amazing weather photos. As usual, some of the most stunning came from the vantage point of space, which offered a new perspective on lightning. Winter also continues to leave its mark, but in sometimes surprising places. European Space Agency astronaut… Read More

Surprise Lake Sheds Light on Underbelly of Greenland Ice

Surprise Lake Sheds Light on Underbelly of Greenland Ice

On a clear day, anyone flying over Greenland on the route between North America and Europe can look down and see the bright blue patches of melted water atop the flat, blindingly white expanse of the ice sheet that covers the island, the second largest chunk of ice on Earth. Scientists have long known this meltwater flows in streams along the ice… Read More

After December Rains, California Comes Up Dry

After December Rains, California Comes Up Dry

Two steps forward, one-and-a-half steps back: That’s been the story of the tenacious California drought lately. After a torrent of rains in December made a small dent in the deep, statewide drought, the faucet has turned off, and some areas have relapsed back into ‘exceptional’ drought, the worst drought category recognized by the U.S Drought … Read More

Picture This: Stunning Halos and Freaky Frost

Picture This: Stunning Halos and Freaky Frost

While most of the weather we experience comes in the sunny or rainy, cold or warm standard varities, the Earth's atmosphere is capable of producing some strange, stunning phenomena if you pay enough attention. We've got a few of those gems this week, along with some beautiful views that remind you just how lovely our home planet can be. It’s only… Read More

A Broken Record: 2014 Hottest Year

A Broken Record: 2014 Hottest Year

The final numbers are in: 2014 is officially the hottest year on record in the past 135 years, NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) announced Friday. The record does not come as a surprise as it’s another marker of the sustained accumulation of heat in the atmosphere thanks to the unabated emissions of greenhouses… Read More

Sea Level Rise Accelerating Faster Than Thought

Sea Level Rise Accelerating Faster Than Thought

The acceleration of the rate of sea level rise over the last couple decades is even higher than scientists had thought, according to a new study that uses a novel method to estimate global sea level rise. The reason? The rate of rise across the 20th century has actually been overestimated — by as much as 30 percent — meaning there’s been a bigger… Read More

2015 Begins With CO2 Above 400 PPM Mark

2015 Begins With CO2 Above 400 PPM Mark

The new year has only just begun, but we’ve already recorded our first days with average carbon dioxide levels above 400 parts per million, potentially leading to many months in a row above this threshold, experts say. The Scripps Institution of Oceanography records of atmospheric carbon dioxide levels show that Jan. 1 was the first day of the… Read More

Picture This: So Cold It Snowed in Florida

Picture This: So Cold It Snowed in Florida

So. It got pretty cold this week. How cold? It snowed in Florida. But snow wasn’t the only sign of winter, as temperatures and wind chills plummeted across much of the country as Arctic air surged southward, leading to some stunning maps, teeth-chattering sights and some serious bundling up. But that cold was offset by some record warm temperature… Read More

Clock Is Ticking on Elusive El Niño Event

Clock Is Ticking on Elusive El Niño Event

Time is running out, El Niño. If the climate phenomenon that forecasters have been watching for the better part of a year — and that can alter weather patterns around the globe — doesn’t get going soon, then it probably won’t happen. And with the latest forecast update released Thursday, the odds El Niño will get its act together in time are if… Read More

EPA Chief: Weather, Climate Scientists’ Work Is ‘Essential’

EPA Chief: Weather, Climate Scientists’ Work Is ‘Essential’

As the sun slowly crept above the desert horizon Wednesday morning, the unmistakable Boston accent of EPA administrator Gina McCarthy jolted to life a room of scientists gathered here for the annual meeting of the American Meteorological Society. “Are you awake?” she asked, prompting a round a laughter that set the tone for her spirited talk and… Read More

Climate Change’s Evolving Role in Extreme Weather

Climate Change’s Evolving Role in Extreme Weather

Everyone everywhere everyday experiences weather. Most of the time it serves as the backdrop to our daily routines or fodder for idle chitchat. But on rare days, it can change lives. Heat waves and cold snaps, hurricanes and tornadoes, downpours and blizzards — they form the extreme ends of the weather spectrum, affecting our health… Read More

Fate of Earth’s Ice Comes Further Into Focus

Fate of Earth’s Ice Comes Further Into Focus

The frigid, ice-covered expanses that make up Earth’s poles are some of the fastest warming parts of the planet as human activity drives up greenhouse gas levels in the atmosphere, altering the global climate. What happens to all that ice isn’t just a concern for these remote, frozen wilds: The ice sheets that cover Greenland and Antarctica hold… Read More

Picture This: It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Winter

Picture This: It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Winter

The days have been growing shorter and the air chillier as winter approaches. It will officially arrive on Saturday, with the winter solstice. Good news: After that, the daylight lasts a little bit longer every day! But there’s a lot of winter weather ahead of us, and it’s already started, from weird ice pancakes forming on a river in Scotland to m… Read More

Rain a ‘Start’ for Calif., But Drought Entrenched

Rain a ‘Start’ for Calif., But Drought Entrenched

The good news is that recent rain has finally started to chip away at the severe precipitation deficits the state is facing. The bad news is that most of California is still in a deep drought and it’s going to take a long time to fully recover. Or, to quote the summary from Thursday’s U.S. Drought Monitor update: “Cautious optimism, but still a… Read More

Europe’s Record Heat Directly Tied to Climate Change

Europe’s Record Heat Directly Tied to Climate Change

As 2014 comes to a close, Europe is virtually certain to lock in its hottest year in more than 500 years, and according to research by three independent teams of climate scientists, the record can be closely attributed to climate change. The three groups, from the UK, the Netherlands and Australia, each using a different method, found that Europe… Read More

November in Books; 2014 On Pace for Hottest Year

November in Books; 2014 On Pace for Hottest Year

With November’s temperature numbers in the books, 2014 is on track to be the hottest year ever recorded, newly released data from NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration show. During the month, the patterns that have been in place for much of the year held fast: While the eastern U.S. was plunged into a deep freeze, the world… Read More

Storm Pounds Calif., but to the Drought, Just a Spritz

Storm Pounds Calif., but to the Drought, Just a Spritz

California began its fourth year of drought in October because of several winter wet seasons that turned out to be painstakingly dry, so clearly it needs all the rain it can get. But the situation is more complicated than that: So much rain at once can cause dangerous flooding (already being documented on social media) and landslides, meaning a lot… Read More

Warm Ocean Waters Boosting Typhoons, Record Heat

Warm Ocean Waters Boosting Typhoons, Record Heat

Typhoon Hagupit is the whopping fifth storm to reach Category 5 strength in the West Pacific ocean basin this year. That number of top-strength storms has been fueled, in part, by the exceptionally warm waters that have been in place across parts of the Pacific — warmth that, along with that from other ocean basins, is setting 2014 on a track to be… Read More

Why Hasn’t A Major Hurricane Hit the U.S. in 9 Years?

Why Hasn’t A Major Hurricane Hit the U.S. in 9 Years?

Another Atlantic hurricane season has come to a close, and with it comes the continuation of a remarkable streak: The U.S. hasn’t seen a major hurricane make landfall within its borders in nine years. The last to do so was Hurricane Wilma, which hit Florida as a Category 3 hurricane on Oct. 24, 2005. Yes, Sandy ripped over the East Coast to the… Read More

Warm Water Invasion Is Fueling Striking Antarctic Ice Melt

Warm Water Invasion Is Fueling Striking Antarctic Ice Melt

The tongues of ice that stick out from and help to buttress the frozen expanse of Antarctica are increasingly under assault from warm ocean waters invading from below, potentially impact global sea level rise a new study says. That warm water intrusion eats away at the parts of Antarctica’s glaciers that flow into and float atop coastal waters.… Read More

WMO Warns Lima Delegates 2014 May Be Hottest Year

WMO Warns Lima Delegates 2014 May Be Hottest Year

As negotiators at the latest global climate meeting gather this week in Lima, Peru, to hammer out a new international agreement to limit emissions of the greenhouse gases fueling global warming, they are receiving a stark reminder of that warming. With less than a month to go, 2014 is in the running to become the warmest year on record, the World… Read More

Big Welcome Storm Headed California’s Way

Big Welcome Storm Headed California’s Way

While a Nor’easter is currently causing misery from Washington, D.C., to Boston, in the form of rain and snow on the busiest travel day of the year, another, perhaps more welcome, storm is set to hit the West Coast later this holiday weekend. That storm is expected to bring desperately needed rains and snow to parts of California. The state has… Read More

Picture This: A Year’s Worth of Snow in One Week

Picture This: A Year’s Worth of Snow in One Week

If you’ve been on social media at all this week, you’ve seen the crazy pictures of the massive snowfall in the Buffalo area. The snow, which reached a staggering 7 feet in the worst-hit areas, came thanks to two bouts of lake effect snow set off when frigid Arctic air swept over still-warm Lake Erie. The air sopped up moisture from the lake and dum… Read More

What Warming Means for Lake Effect Snow

What Warming Means for Lake Effect Snow

The plight of Buffalo, socked in under feet upon feet of snow, has entranced the country. Social media lit up with mind-boggling pictures of the snow-buried landscape, from hundreds of cars trapped on the highway to doorways blocked by walls of snow. And it’s something Buffalo could face more often in a warming world. Rising global temperatures are… Read More

2014 Set for Record Hot; Record Cold Thing of the Past

2014 Set for Record Hot; Record Cold Thing of the Past

A surge of Arctic air has left much of the continental U.S. shivering in unusually bitter November cold. But this early foray into winter weather is just a small blip in the overall global picture, which is of a warming world that is still on track to see 2014 set the mark for hottest year on record, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric… Read More