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Brian Kahn

Brian Kahn

Editorial

Brian Kahn is a Web editor at Climate Central. He previously worked at the International Research Institute for Climate and Society and partnered with climate.gov to produce multimedia stories, manage social media campaigns and develop version 2.0 of climate.gov. His writing has also appeared in the Wall Street Journal, Grist, the Daily Kos, Justmeans and the Yale Forum on Climate Change in the Media. In previous lives, he led sleigh ride tours through a herd of 7,000 elk and guided tourists around the deepest lake in the U.S. He holds an M.A. in Climate and Society from Columbia University. 

Most Recent News Entries:

U.S. Corn Belt the Most Productive Region in the World?

U.S. Corn Belt the Most Productive Region in the World?

NASA researchers have used a new satellite technique to see where the most productive plant-growing regions in the world are. For a few months every year, it turns out the U.S. Corn Belt has the most prolific plant growth on the planet, beating out even the ever-green Amazon. The surprising discovery not only gives the Midwest a feather in its cap,… Read More

Tornado Technology Innovation Born From 1974 Tragedy

Tornado Technology Innovation Born From 1974 Tragedy

Thursday marked the 40th anniversary of one of the most destructive tornado outbreaks in U.S. history. The event, deemed a Super Outbreak, took place over two days and spawned nearly 150 tornadoes across 13 states and the Canadian province of Ontario. The storm left behind millions of dollars in damage and caused 300 deaths and 6,000 injuries. The … Read More

New NASA Satellite Shows Future of Precip Imagery

New NASA Satellite Shows Future of Precip Imagery

NASA’s latest satellite has opened its eyes for the first time and the images it has beamed back to scientists on Earth provide a new view of the globe’s rainfall. They also offer a sneak peek into how the satellite could help provide more detailed imagery and analysis of hurricanes, nor’easters and other strong storms as they form around the plane… Read More

Where are the Tornadoes? Slow Start, but No Guarantees

Where are the Tornadoes? Slow Start, but No Guarantees

The past two years have been one of the quietest periods for tornadoes in the U.S. since the late 1980s. This tornado season is off to a sluggish start as well, but there are no guarantees this year will follow suit. March represents a major weather transition period. As spring spreads from north to south, snow melts, leaves unfurl, and heat retur… Read More

Spring is Arriving Earlier and Earlier in the U.S.

Spring is Arriving Earlier and Earlier in the U.S.

March 20th marks the first day of the vernal equinox, although spring might feel like it's never going to arrive for those still battling unseasonably cold weather from the Midwest to the East. But don’t be fooled by this year's cooler temperatures. When you define the onset of spring as the “first leaf” date for a number of plants, the season is a… Read More

The Best View You’ll See of the Spring Equinox

The Best View You’ll See of the Spring Equinox

The spring equinox arrives on Thursday. That might have many people living in the eastern half of the country hope that cool weather will final exit the region. But in the meantime, at least enjoy the view of the equinox from space courtesy of NASA’s Earth Observatory. The equinox is a function of the Earth’s orbit around the Sun. On March 20, the… Read More

White House Brings Together Big Data & Climate Change

White House Brings Together Big Data & Climate Change

Addressing climate change just got an assist from big data. The White House released the first installment of data and tools for web developers, planners and the public to see the challenges climate change poses and to help identify solutions. The new site, climate.data.gov, is part of a broader Climate Data Initiative to make climate data easily … Read More

CO2 on Path to Cross 400 ppm Threshold for a Month

CO2 on Path to Cross 400 ppm Threshold for a Month

Last year, atmospheric carbon dioxide crossed 400 parts per million for the first time in human history. However, it didn’t cross that threshold until mid-May. This year’s first 400 ppm reading came a full two months earlier this past week and the seeming inexorable upward march is likely to race past another milestone next month. “We’re already s… Read More

New Greenland Ice Melt Fuels Sea Level Rise Concerns

New Greenland Ice Melt Fuels Sea Level Rise Concerns

New data published Sunday in Nature Climate Change reveals that over the past decade, the region has started rapidly losing ice due to a rise in air and ocean temperatures caused in part by climate change. The increased melt raises grave concerns that sea level rise could accelerate even faster than projected, threatening even more coastal communit… Read More

Let it Rain: NASA Satellites Show Slice of Global Precip

Let it Rain: NASA Satellites Show Slice of Global Precip

Lacy ribbons of precipitation stretch across the planet in a new animation from NASA showing how widespread and yet ephemeral rain can be. A series of satellites known as the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) measure heavy to moderate rain over tropical and subtropical regions every day. From those satellite measurements taken every 3 hour… Read More

What Winds From 20 Massive Winter Storms Look Like

What Winds From 20 Massive Winter Storms Look Like

Think you had a rough winter? Just be thankful you don’t live on the coast of the North Sea. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has whipped up a map of wind anomalies from January-February. During that period, a remarkable 20 storms with hurricane-force winds (classified as winds in excess of 74 mph) formed in the region. The mar… Read More

East Greets Winter’s End; West Braces for Drought, Fire

East Greets Winter’s End; West Braces for Drought, Fire

February marked the end of winter in the meteorological sense, and it continued a three-month trend of warm and dry conditions in the West and cool and wet conditions in the East. And despite a seemingly endless winter for those on the East Coast, for most of the states from Georgia to Maine, it was just an average winter. Not a single state on t… Read More

Social Cost of Carbon Greatly Underestimated: Report

Social Cost of Carbon Greatly Underestimated: Report

Carbon dioxide emissions are causing the climate to change and those changes come with a real cost. The big questions are what’s the price tag for that “social” cost and when does it gets paid? According the a new report, current best estimates could actually be on the low end thanks to “unknown unknowns.” The most recent estimate for the cost of … Read More

Three EU Countries Hit 2020 Renewable Benchmarks Early

Three EU Countries Hit 2020 Renewable Benchmarks Early

Newly released data shows that three European Union member countries have already met their renewable energy goals for 2020. A number of other members are also well on their way to meeting their benchmarks, though some countries, most notably the U.K., are a long ways away. Eurostat, the main entity that keeps data on the EU, released renewable en… Read More

Get Ready for Next Climate Phenomenon: El Nino

Get Ready for Next Climate Phenomenon: El Nino

The odds are increasing for El Niño to develop this fall according the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration… Read More

Sea Level Rise Threatens World’s Cultural Treasures

Sea Level Rise Threatens World’s Cultural Treasures

It’s easy to see why Venice is a World Heritage Site when taking in the view from the Rialto Bridge. The Grand Canal stretches into the distance as gondoliers’ voices mingle with the sound of motorboats and echo off the ornate pastel buildings lining the city’s main thoroughfare. People bustle along the sidewalks that line the canal and disappear d… Read More

March Madness, NASA Style: Cast Your Vote Now

March Madness, NASA Style: Cast Your Vote Now

The NCAA won’t release its tournament brackets until March 16, but if you’ve got March Madness fever, NASA has you covered. On Monday, NASA’s Earth Observatory started its second annual Tournament Earth. Instead of the likes of Florida, Duke, and Kansas filling the brackets, 32 images that straddle the line between data and art are vying for the ti… Read More

Monster Storm Sits Coiled on California’s Coast

Monster Storm Sits Coiled on California’s Coast

A huge storm is sitting off the coast of California like a tightly wound spring. As it releases pressure, precipitation has spread across the parched state, but this round of rain and snow is extremely unlikely to bust the drought that has stretched on for more than a year. The satellite image above from The National Weather Service shows the low … Read More

New Mexico Facing ‘Extremely Destructive’ Wildfire Season

New Mexico Facing ‘Extremely Destructive’ Wildfire Season

Fall and winter have conspired to create conditions that could lead to a potentially explosive summer as New Mexico fire managers face a “grim and potentially extreme situation” for the coming fire season. That bleak assessment on Wednesday from the National Weather Service (NWS) comes less than 3 years since New Mexico endured a gruesome wildfire… Read More

New Satellite to Improve Climate and Weather Forecasts

New Satellite to Improve Climate and Weather Forecasts

In T-minus a few hours, global precipitation monitoring will receive a major upgrade. NASA and the Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency are launching a revolutionary new satellite on Thursday afternoon that will provide important new data on precipitation, which will in turn help improve climate and weather forecasts. The new satellite is dubbed … Read More

Climate Change Is Increasing Extreme Heat Globally

Climate Change Is Increasing Extreme Heat Globally

Despite reports of a global warming "hiatus," a new study shows that the number of areas being affected by extreme heat are on the rise and that the hottest temperatures on the planet are also increasing. The idea of hiatus comes from reports of a recent slowing in the rise of the globe’s average temperature. But average temperature is only one me… Read More

Small Volcanic Eruptions Add to Larger Impact on Climate

Small Volcanic Eruptions Add to Larger Impact on Climate

The recent slow down in global warming has been attributed to a number of factors, including excess heat being stored in the deep ocean and inadvertent reductions of certain greenhouse gases. Now add volcanic eruptions to the mix of contributing factors. A new analysis published in Nature Geosciences on Sunday shows that a series of relatively sm… Read More

Watch 27 Years of ‘Old’ Arctic Ice Melt Away in Seconds

Watch 27 Years of ‘Old’ Arctic Ice Melt Away in Seconds

The total amount of Arctic sea ice is near record low for this time of year. The amount of ice isn’t the only big story, though. A video from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration shows a disturbing trend in the age of Arctic ice. Since 1988, Arctic sea ice is getting younger, and young ice is not a good thing. In 1988, ice that was … Read More

Play It Again: January Continues Globe’s Warm Trend

Play It Again: January Continues Globe’s Warm Trend

Talk about a hot streak. Last month was the fourth-warmest January since recordkeeping began in 1880. It was also the 347th consecutive month with above-average temperatures compared to the 20th century average, which has been fueled, in large part, by climate change. That streak is one month shy of 29 straight years. Global average temperatures … Read More

Arctic Sea Ice Sits at Record Low for Mid-February

Arctic Sea Ice Sits at Record Low for Mid-February

Arctic sea ice growth has slowed dramatically in recent weeks, thanks in large part to abnormally warm air and water temperatures. Sea ice now sits at record low levels for mid-February. According to the National Snow and Ice Data Center, as of February 18, sea ice covered about 14.36 million square miles in the Arctic. The previous low on this da… Read More