Wheeler Denies Climate Crisis in his Confirmation Hearing

Wheeler Denies Climate Crisis in his Confirmation Hearing

Andrew Wheeler, the Acting EPA  Administrator, appeared before the Senate Environment & Public Works Committee yesterday for his confirmation hearing and was greeted by protesters and angry questioning by the Committee’s Democratic members.  The protesters began shouting “Shutdown Wheeler” just as he began to read his opening statement, and were quickly removed, as he raised his eyebrows in disdain (see video above.)  Drawing fire from the Democrats on the Committee, Wheeler said that climate change is a “global issue” but “not the greatest crisis,” and did not even mention climate change in his opening statement. 

Continue Reading 410 words
Changing climate mentality

Changing climate mentality

Our good friends at the Yale Program for Climate Communication along with the George Mason Center for Climate Change Communication analyzed in their most recent survey the percentage of people who have changed their opinions about climate change and it turns out about 8% of surveyed Americans indeed had changed their attitude. Overall 84% of respondents said that they were MORE concerned than in the previous two years about global warming.

So what happens once you do accept climate change and begin worrying about the state of our planet? It turns out that, as UnDark reported, a growing body of evidence demonstrates that climate change and its effects are linked to elevated rates of depression, anxiety, suicidal ideation, post-traumatic stress, and a host of negative emotions including anger, hopelessness, despair, and a feeling of loss. Researchers have dubbed these feelings “ecological grief.”

Continue Reading 481 words
Antarctica Now Melting Faster Than It Was In the 80’s

Antarctica Now Melting Faster Than It Was In the 80’s

A new study published by the National Academy of Sciences delivered some sobering news on Monday — that Antarctica is losing ice at a  rate six times faster than it has in the past.  According to CNN, the rate of ice loss has increased each decade over the last 40 years — from a loss of 40 gigatons (a gigaton is one billion tons) per year from in the decade from 1979 to 1990 to a loss of 252 gigatons per year in the decade from 2009 to 2017.  And Axios explained that this finding is “important” because “previous studies had regarded that part of the continent as stable or not yet undergoing a net loss.”

Continue Reading 377 words
Oceans Warming Much Faster Than Previously Thought

Oceans Warming Much Faster Than Previously Thought

Oceans are heating up at a rate as much as 40% faster than the global consensus of scientists studying climate change had previously predicted.  A team of scientists looking at the numerous recent studies which made that claim have now validated those studies’ conclusions based on ocean heat content (OHC) observations (actual ocean temperature data), according to a new report published in the journal Science on Friday.  It also validates (as if we needed more proof) that the planet is clearly warming.  

Why This Matters:  Science matters.  The more data scientists have to work with, the better they can understand the changes that are wreaking havoc with our planet.  With more ocean observing sensors, which could be much more beneficial if we expanded the network of buoys and added sensors to more ships, we would not have to fill in nearly so many gaps and could do a much better job of forecasting risks and impacts, such as sea level rise, coral bleaching, and ocean acidification.  As the experts who conducted the review said, “There is a clear need to continue to improve the ocean observation and analysis system to provide better estimates of OHC, because it will enable more refined regional projections of the future.” 

Continue Reading 386 words
Bioengineering may save America’s forests

Bioengineering may save America’s forests

Scientific American recently reported that U.S. forests are among the most vulnerable in the world to predators and disease, according to a new report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine. The report also explained that biotechnology has the potential to be a part of the solution in protecting forest trees against destructive pest and disease outbreaks,

Continue Reading 347 words
Rep. Ted Lieu’s march to 100% renewables

Rep. Ted Lieu’s march to 100% renewables

This week, California Congressman Ted Lieu introduced the first major climate bill of the 116th Congress. In a statement, Lieu said that: “There is no threat greater to our nation’s security than climate change. Failing to protect our planet will endanger the lives of millions, hurt our economy and jeopardize our children’s future. The wildfires […]

Continue Reading 330 words

Want the planet in your inbox?

Subscribe to the email that top lawmakers, renowned scientists, and thousands of concerned citizens turn to each morning for the latest environmental news and analysis.