BRRRR – Global Warming Could Cause Polar Vortex to Blast the U.S. With Cold Air

BRRRR – Global Warming Could Cause Polar Vortex to Blast the U.S. With Cold Air

Above the North Pole, a polar vortex — a swirling flurry of cold air — could cause weeks of frigid weather in the Eastern United States, Northern Europe, and East Asia according to forecasters. Snow blanketed Spain over the weekend, dumping nearly two feet of snow on Madrid — the most snow in the last 50 years there.  Madrid

Why this Matters:  While many associate global warming with hotter weather, climate change can also cause harsher, more snowy winters.

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Arctic Bowhead Whale Population Rebounding Despite Warming

Arctic Bowhead Whale Population Rebounding Despite Warming

Bowhead whale populations have nearly returned to their numbers pre-commercial whaling. An update from the National Ocean and Atmospheric Administration suggests that even in spite of Arctic warming, Bowhead whales have multiplied in Alaskan waters.

Why this Matters:  Bowhead whales were once nearly extinct, as commercial whalers at the turn of the twentieth century hunted them for their oil, blubber, and baleen.

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NOAA Releases Annual Arctic Report Card, Reports Unprecedented Warming click button

NOAA Releases Annual Arctic Report Card, Reports Unprecedented Warming

On Tuesday, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) released its 15th annual Arctic Report Card. It observed a “sustained transformation to a warmer, less frozen, and biologically changed Arctic.”  The holistic report is a collection of “vital signs” from the Arctic ecosystem and factors in variables like wildlife, air temperature, wildfires, and sea ice.

Why This Matters: In a phenomenon known as Arctic amplification, the Arctic is warming at a rate 2 to 3 times higher than the global average

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Treasury Department Proposes Rule Aimed At Banks That Refuse To Lend For Arctic Drilling

Treasury Department Proposes Rule Aimed At Banks That Refuse To Lend For Arctic Drilling

On Friday, the Treasury Department proposed a rule that states that “decisions by banks to not serve a specific customer should be based on individual risks, rather than a categorical exclusion.” according to The Hill.

Why This Matters:  This kind of government mandate overriding the free market smacks of, well, socialism or cronyism or both. And while oil ad gas companies are now hurting, they’ve reaped billions from our dependence on oil and gas for fuel. 

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New Study Finds Species In Crisis Are “Clustered”

New Study Finds Species In Crisis Are “Clustered”

A study published last week in the journal Nature provides a new view on the extinction crisis — that most of the planet’s species are not in decline and the ones that are in deep trouble are “clustered.” 

Why This Matters:  Is the glass half empty or half full? It all depends on how you look at it. These scientists argue that “the way global averages were being estimated could be strongly influenced by a small number of populations that were experiencing extreme declines, even if most were stable.”

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The Arctic Is Literally On the Move

The Arctic Is Literally On the Move

A new study published last week in the journal Science, in which scientists took an extensive look at Arctic wildlife, found that animals are on the move — dramatically changing where and when they breed, migrate and forage.

Why This Matters:  The dramatic changes in the Arctic will have very significant impacts on the people who live and work there.

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