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Legislation Introduced to Address the Rising Impacts of Urban Flooding

October 19, 2014 by NRDC Switchboard

Urban Flooding Legislation

Urban flooding is a serious and growing problem. “Around 20-25 percent of all economic losses resulting from flooding occur in areas not designated as being in a “floodplain,” but as a consequence of urban drainage,” according to the Federal Emergency Management Agency.[read more]

The High Cost of Hurricanes [INFOGRAPHIC]

October 19, 2014 by Tom Schueneman

Hurricane Damage Risk

The past ten years have seen a spike in catastrophic hurricanes in the Atlantic basin, causing more than $300 billion of damage, over 2000 deaths, and displacing hundreds of thousands of people. Cities along the east coast and Gulf states are becoming more vulnerable to future large hurricanes.[read more]

Upcoming US Arctic Council Chairmanship Should not Focus on Military Security

October 17, 2014 by Roman Kilisek

The Arctic and the Military

Even though these developments seem to push military security on the US Arctic agenda, it better serves US interest to comprehend Russia’s moves in the Arctic as rational and expand the use of confidence-building measures, as well as prioritize climate change during its Arctic Council Chairmanship.[read more]

Short-Circuiting Sea Level Rise

October 14, 2014 by Jim Baird
11

Sea Level Rise Cycles

Sea level rise can be short-circuited with energy systems that pay for themselves with the power they generate. The heat of global warming is going principally into the oceans; mainly in the top, mixed, layer of the tropical seas.[read more]

California Drought Leads to Less Hydropower, Increased Natural Gas Generation

October 12, 2014 by U.S. EIA: Today in Energy
7

Drought and Fuel Source Changes

The drought in California continues to increase in severity since California's governor declared a state of drought emergency in January 2014. As of September 30, 58% of the state was classified as experiencing exceptional drought, the most intense drought category.[read more]

812 Million Ways Louisiana Could Have Made Itself More Resilient

October 12, 2014 by NRDC Switchboard

Louisiana Preparedness

 

A report released last week has revealed that the State of Louisiana has failed to make use of $812 million in disaster mitigation money it was given to make its communities more resilient and better prepared for floods, storms, sea level rise, and hurricanes.[read more]

NOAA: Record Antarctic Sea Ice Growth Linked To Its Staggering Loss Of Land Ice

October 11, 2014 by Joseph Romm
1

Sea Ice and Land Ice

NOAA said that “as counterintuitive as expanding winter Antarctic sea ice may appear on a warming planet, it may actually be a manifestation of recent warming.” The thing to know about Antarctica and ice is that a large part of the South Pole’s great sheet of land ice is close to or at a point of no return.[read more]

Drought Reveals Water-Energy Connection, Cutting California's Hydropower in Half

October 9, 2014 by Jeff St. John
1

California Energy-Water Connection

California’s drought hasn’t just left its mark on dried-up fields and suburban lawns. It’s also sapped the state’s supply of hydropower, leaving natural-gas-fired generators -- and a growing share of solar and wind power -- to make up the difference.[read more]

Earth Is Heating Faster Than We Realized, Making 2°C Limit For Global Warming More Urgent

October 8, 2014 by Joseph Romm
3

Earth Heating Up Faster

A major new study finds that “scientists may have hugely underestimated the extent of global warming because temperature readings from southern hemisphere seas were inaccurate.” In short, as New Scientist puts it, “it’s worse than we thought.”[read more]

National Science Foundation: Record California Drought Directly Linked To Climate Change

October 2, 2014 by Joseph Romm

Drought and Climate Change Effects

A Stanford study funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) confirms a growing body of research that finds “The atmospheric conditions associated with the unprecedented drought in California are very likely linked to human-caused climate change.”[read more]

Companies are Part of the Equation to Address Climate Change

September 30, 2014 by Bob Perciasepe
1

In recent years, many companies have acknowledged the risks of climate change and worked to improve their energy efficiency and sustainability. Recently, companies announced new efforts to fund clean energy, reduce carbon emissions, and support a price on carbon.[read more]

UN Climate Summit: Could Rising Seas and Coastal Flooding Give Rise to New Legal Category?

September 30, 2014 by Roman Kilisek

Rising Seas and New Law

Rising sea levels could potentially have the most devastating impact on small island states such as the Maldives. These small island states are already negatively impacted and can be expected to be the worst hit by continued rising sea levels – potentially even losing their entire state’s territory to the ocean.[read more]

Sustainability and the Concept of a 'Circular Economy'

September 29, 2014 by Roman Kilisek
1

Sustainability and Circularity

In an article for the World Economic Forum blog, Leo Schlesinger makes the argument for a regenerative ‘circular economy’. This concept would basically embed sustainability firmly within society and effectively restore much of the life-supporting biosphere for our generation and future generations as well.[read more]

Energy Quote of the Day: 'Alaska is Going to be the Next Florida'

September 27, 2014 by Jared Anderson

Alaska and Environmental Risk

There is widespread agreement that carbon emissions have significantly increased since the industrial revolution and these emissions are playing a climate-changing role, but the consensus diverges when modeling future climate change effect scenarios.[read more]

The Gathering Storm: U.S. Must Lead Action on Climate Change

September 26, 2014 by Daniel Kammen

We face a threat from climate disruption. And the U.S. must lead to a clean energy future and a healthier world. Or else the longer heat waves, prolonged drought, crop failures, rising seas, increased wildfires and floods, and natural systems crashing will create profoundly destabilizing effects.[read more]