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Brian Kahn

Brian Kahn

Editorial

Brian Kahn is a Senior Science Writer 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:

We Couldn’t Monitor Larsen C Without These Satellites

We Couldn’t Monitor Larsen C Without These Satellites

The Larsen C ice shelf is about to calve one of the biggest icebergs on record. The iceberg-to-be is hanging on by a thread, with just eight miles of solid ice standing in the way of a rift that’s spent years carving through the ice. Scientists can track the growth of the crack with precision during the summer season by flying over it, but even … Read More

It’s So Hot in Phoenix, Planes Can’t Take Off

It’s So Hot in Phoenix, Planes Can’t Take Off

An intense heat wave is crippling the West this week, sending the mercury above 120°F in places like Phoenix. In a sign of just how hot things are getting, some airlines have had to cancel flights because of the heat. American Airlines said it cancelled 50 flights out of Phoenix Sky Harbor aboard Bombardier CRJ aircraft on Tuesday because the … Read More

Scientists Saw a Nearly Unheard of Antarctic Meltdown

Scientists Saw a Nearly Unheard of Antarctic Meltdown

Antarctica is unfreezing. In the past few months alone, researchers have chronicled a seasonal waterfall, widespread networks of rivers and melt ponds and an iceberg the size of Delaware on the brink of breaking away from the thawing landscape. A new study published in Nature Communications only adds to the disturbing trend of change afoot in … Read More

It’s June. California Is Still Covered in Snow

It’s June. California Is Still Covered in Snow

The summer solstice is just around the corner, but someone forgot to tell California’s snowpack. After years of wallowing in drought, this winter walloped California’s Sierra Nevada mountains in a major, record-setting way. And while the calendar says summer, winter still has its grips on the granite spine of the Sierras… Read More

May Continues a Ridiculous Warm Streak for the Planet

May Continues a Ridiculous Warm Streak for the Planet

Another month is in the global temperature record books. While May just missed setting a record, the data is another reminder that climate change is making the world hotter and pushing it into a new state. This May was the second-warmest May on record, according to new NASA data released on Thursday. The planet was 1.6°F (0.88°C) warmer than … Read More

A GOP Congressman Is Forging Ahead on Climate Action

A GOP Congressman Is Forging Ahead on Climate Action

Rep. Carlos Curbelo (R-Fla.) occupies a strange place in politics these days. In an era of increasing polarization he’s a moderate Republican who represents a swing district. That alone makes him an outlier. But he’s also staking his political reputation on solving an issue nearly verboten in the Republican-controlled Congress: climate change … Read More

There’s a New Way the U.S. Is Committing to Paris

There’s a New Way the U.S. Is Committing to Paris

It’s been a week since President Trump announced he was pulling the U.S. out of the Paris Agreement. In that time, a remarkable transformation has taken place. As the federal government abdicates its responsibility to address climate change, a groundswell of support has sprung up at the state, city and corporate levels. Those sub-national actors … Read More

State and Corporate Climate Action Just Got Serious

State and Corporate Climate Action Just Got Serious

More than 1,200 corporations, academic institutions and state and local governments said Monday that they plan to stand behind the Paris climate agreement, despite President Trump’s decision to pull the U.S. out of the multinational pact. Trump’s Paris decision washed over the climate action landscape like a tsunami on Thursday. As the waters of… Read More

Carbon Dioxide Set an All-Time Monthly High

Carbon Dioxide Set an All-Time Monthly High

With May in the books, it’s official: carbon dioxide set an all-time monthly record. It’s a sobering annual reminder that humans are pushing the climate into a state unseen in millions of years. Carbon dioxide peaked at 409.65 parts per million for the year, according to data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. It’s not a … Read More

Trump Broke With 194 Countries on the Paris Climate Pact

Trump Broke With 194 Countries on the Paris Climate Pact

President Trump committed to withdrawing the U.S. from the Paris Agreement on Thursday, suggesting that the U.S. wasn’t getting a fair deal and unfoundedly claiming that the agreement was designed to allow other nations to “gain wealth at our country’s expense.” The stated goal of the pact is to keep global warming limited to well below the 2°C … Read More

The Larsen C Iceberg Is on the Brink of Breaking Off

The Larsen C Iceberg Is on the Brink of Breaking Off

The saga of the Larsen C crack is about reach its stunning conclusion. Scientists have watched a rift grow along one of Antarctica’s ice shelves for years. Now it’s in the final days of cutting off a piece of ice that will be one of the largest icebergs ever recorded. It’s the latest dreary news from the icy underbelly of the planet, which has … Read More

Add Nitrous Oxide to the List of Permafrost Melt Concerns

Add Nitrous Oxide to the List of Permafrost Melt Concerns

Melting permafrost is among the biggest climate change issues. That’s because it contains billions of tons of carbon that, if it melts, will be released in the form of carbon dioxide and methane, an even more potent greenhouse gas. Less studied is what happens to the 67 billion tons of nitrogen stored in the currently frozen soil. New research … Read More

Waves Rippled Through Greenland’s Ice. That’s Ominous

Waves Rippled Through Greenland’s Ice. That’s Ominous

On its surface, the Greenland ice sheet is a vast expanse of seemingly immovable ice. But beneath the monotonous stretch of white, scientists have discovered evidence of waves rippling through one of its outlet glaciers and roiling its innards. The waves, observed during the two most intense melt seasons on record, sent an unprecedented cascade of … Read More

The EPA’s Obama-Era Snapshot Is Missing Information

The EPA’s Obama-Era Snapshot Is Missing Information

Last Friday, the Environmental Protection Agency’s climate change pages were shuttered for revisions. A week later, they’re still not back. In their place is a page explaining that they’re being updated to “reflect EPA's priorities” under President Trump and EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt, and that users can check out a snapshot of the entire EPA … Read More

Arctic Sea Ice Keeps Scraping the Bottom of the Barrel

Arctic Sea Ice Keeps Scraping the Bottom of the Barrel

The astounding transformation of the Arctic before our very eyes continues. Yet another month has passed with record low sea ice. This April merely tied April 2016 for the lowest extent on record, but it’s hardly reason to celebrate. The Arctic was missing 394,000 square miles of ice, with each day setting a record low or within 36,000 square … Read More

The U.S. Is on a Historic Streak of Record Highs

The U.S. Is on a Historic Streak of Record Highs

The U.S. is is on a hot streak like no other. April marked yet another month where record highs outpaced record lows. It’s the 29th month in a row with the odds tipped in favor of record highs, 10 months longer than the previous stretch where highs beat lows in 2011-12. Embedded within the historic warm streak are a series of records-setting … Read More

The Larsen C Ice Shelf Crack Just Sprouted a New Branch

The Larsen C Ice Shelf Crack Just Sprouted a New Branch

Winter has descended on Antarctica. Even as cold and darkness blankets the bottom of the world, the region’s most watched ice shelf is is continuing its epic breakdown. A crack started spreading across the Larsen C ice shelf in 2010, reaching 100 miles in length in February. Researchers with Project MIDAS, a British group monitoring the ice shelf… Read More

The Next March Is All About Climate Change

The Next March Is All About Climate Change

For the second weekend in a row, Washington, D.C. will be home to people clamoring for policies based on science. But unlike the March for Science, this weekend’s People’s Climate March will be overtly political and put a sharp focus on climate change and justice. The march builds on a 2014 landmark event that drew hundreds of thousands to the … Read More

California Got More Snow This Winter Than Past 4 Total

California Got More Snow This Winter Than Past 4 Total

That it was wet this winter in California is an understatement. After four years of drought, the Golden State faced a whiteout of epic proportions. Mountains were caked in nearly 800 inches of snow and ski resorts are slated to stay open into summer to take advantage of snowpack unseen in years. Reservoirs filled, dams overtopped with nearly … Read More

Climate Change Altering the Arctic Faster Than Expected

Climate Change Altering the Arctic Faster Than Expected

Evidence continues to mount that climate change has pushed the Arctic into a new state. Skyrocketing temperatures are altering the essence of the region, melting ice on land and sea, driving more intense wildfires, altering ocean circulation and dissolving permafrost. A new report chronicles all these changes and warns that even if the world … Read More

Climate Change Was the Epicenter of March for Science

Climate Change Was the Epicenter of March for Science

The roar of the crowd of thousands of scientists and supporters rippled up and down Constitution Avenue like a wave on Saturday. It found two fitting sounding boards on either side of the street. On one side, the Smithsonian, the world’s largest museum and research program. It’s a literal institution in the science community, with its research cut … Read More

The Energy Dept. Website Shifts Focus to the Economy

The Energy Dept. Website Shifts Focus to the Economy

The Trump administration is cutting down on greenhouse gases . . . on its websites, that is. The Department of Energy’s pages on bioenergy and wind energy as well as transportation have both reduced their mentions of greenhouse gas emissions and reducing fossil fuel use in favor of language more geared toward jobs and energy independence. They’re … Read More

This App Shows What Sea Level Rise Will Do

This App Shows What Sea Level Rise Will Do

The oceans are rising and already creating problems from Boston to Miami. But the true scope of what the world is in for is hard to imagine. Standing on dry land today and knowing that it will be underwater by 2100 is understandable in some abstract way, but abstractions don’t exactly move people to undertake action, let alone at the scale needed … Read More

We Just Breached the 410 Parts Per Million Threshold

We Just Breached the 410 Parts Per Million Threshold

The world just passed another round-numbered climate milestone. Scientists predicted it would happen this year and lo and behold, it has. On Tuesday, the Mauna Loa Observatory recorded its first-ever carbon dioxide reading in excess of 410 parts per million (it was 410.28 ppm in case you want the full deal). Carbon dioxide hasn’t reached that … Read More

The March For Science is Heading to Greenland

The March For Science is Heading to Greenland

Field research season is getting underway in Greenland. Scientists are racing to the island for the few months a year when the towering ice sheet is accessible. Despite the scramble to get as much research done as possible in such a tiny window, scientists will take a moment on Saturday to march in solidarity with thousands of other researchers… Read More

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US Temperature Projections If current trends in burning coal and other fossil fuels continue, average temperatures in the U.S. are projected to increase

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