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  • News

    ‘Sunny day’ high tide floods are on the rise along U.S. coasts

    As sea levels continue to rise, many coastal U.S. cities will see an increasing number of days each year that streets flood during high tides, according to the U.S. National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration. For many parts of the country, particularly along the U.S. East Coast, that increase has already ramped up over the last two decades.

    From 2000 to 2019, these “sunny-day...

    07/15/2019 - 13:01 Climate
  • News

    A mysterious coral disease is ravaging Caribbean reefs

    Divers monitoring coral reefs off St. Thomas in the U.S. Virgin Islands in January noticed something alarming: Big white lesions were eating into the colorful tissues of hundreds of stony corals. Some corals were dead by the next day — only their stark white skeletons remained. Others languished for up to two weeks. Within four months, more than half of the reef suffered the same demise.

    07/09/2019 - 06:00 Oceans, Ecosystems, Climate
  • News in Brief

    Europe’s latest heat wave has been linked to climate change

    Climate change made it five times more likely that Europe would experience a powerful heat wave like the one that baked the region in June, an international team of scientists reports.

    The findings, released July 2 by the World Weather Attribution Network, tackle the tricky question of how the heat wave might have been linked to global warming (SN Online: 6/2/19). The extreme weather...

    07/02/2019 - 13:26 Climate
  • News

    CO2 emissions are on track to take us beyond 1.5 degrees of global warming

    A new study shows just how hard it may be to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius over preindustrial times.

    The world’s existing power plants, industrial equipment, vehicles and other CO₂-emitters are on track to pump out enough carbon dioxide by midcentury to blow past that target, researchers report July 1 in Nature.  Add in future power plants that are already planned,...

    07/01/2019 - 11:00 Climate
  • News

    Is climate change causing Europe’s intense heat? A scientist weighs in

    Mainland Europe has sweltered for days under record-breaking temperatures, prompting researchers to try to untangle how much of the heat wave can be linked to climate change. A report on that, by an international consortium of scientists called the World Weather Attribution Network, is expected to be released on July 2.

    Previous heat records for many parts of Europe were set in the...

    06/28/2019 - 15:14 Climate
  • News

    Cold War–era spy satellite images show Himalayan glaciers are melting fast

    Declassified Cold War–era spy satellite film shows that the melting of hundreds of Himalayan glaciers has sped up in recent decades.

    An analysis of 650 of the largest glaciers in the mountain range revealed that the total ice mass in 2000 was 87 percent of the 1975 mass. By 2016, the total ice mass had shrunk to only 72 percent of the 1975 total. The data show that the glaciers are...

    06/19/2019 - 14:00 Climate
  • News

    The National Weather Service has launched its new U.S. forecasting model

    The National Weather Service has launched a powerful new weather forecasting model, just in time for the U.S. Atlantic hurricane season. But some meteorologists worry that, even after years of testing, the model is still not ready for prime time.

    Over the last year, the weather service has been testing the upgraded tool, using it to do retrospective forecasts of three hurricane seasons...

    06/12/2019 - 15:11 Climate
  • News

    Limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees C could prevent thousands of deaths in the U.S.

    Having the world meet a more stringent goal to limit global warming may prevent thousands of heat-related deaths in 15 major U.S. cities, a study shows. The projections illustrate the high risk from climate change faced by urban populations.

    Under the Paris Agreement, participating countries have pledged to curb greenhouse gas emissions with the aim of limiting warming to no more than 2...

    06/05/2019 - 14:00 Health, Climate
  • Exhibit

    The Smithsonian’s ‘Deep Time’ exhibit gives dinosaurs new life

    After five years, the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C., is finally reopening its dinosaur hall on June 8. Visitors may come for fan favorites like Tyrannosaurus rex and Stegosaurus — and these fossils are gorgeously presented. But the new, permanent exhibition, the “David H. Koch Hall of Fossils — Deep Time,” has a much grander story to tell about the history...

    06/04/2019 - 12:17 Science & Society, Paleontology, Climate
  • Feature

    The Southern Ocean may be less of a carbon sink than we thought

    The vast stretch of icy water that separates Antarctica from other continents is a dark mystery to most people. Polar explorer Ernest Shackleton, one of the few who have been to the Southern Ocean, regarded its storm-wracked seas with fear and awe. After ice floes trapped and crushed the three-masted Endurance in 1915, Shackleton made an epic rescue attempt, sailing 1,300 kilometers to bring...

    06/02/2019 - 06:00 Climate, Earth, Oceans