##climatecrisis
Tropical Storm Bertha Makes Landfall In South Carolina After Flooding South Florida

Tropical Storm Bertha Makes Landfall In South Carolina After Flooding South Florida

The second named storm of the season, Tropical Storm Bertha, strengthened quickly overnight Tuesday and made landfall yesterday morning about 20 miles east of Charleston.   On Tuesday, as a result of the storm, Miami experienced more than 7 inches of rain — 6 of which fell in 2 hours, flooding streets across the city.

Why This Matters:  Tropical Storm Bertha is following an increasingly familiar pattern of unprecedented amounts of rainfall along with strong winds that persist into the interior portions.

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Dam Failures a Risk Across the Country Due to Climate Change

Dam Failures a Risk Across the Country Due to Climate Change

The Edenville Dam failure in Michigan causing thousands to evacuate puts a spotlight on a problem that the American Society of Civil Engineers highlighted in 2017 when it gave our country a “D” for dam safety (yep – that’s it’s grade) but this grade has not significantly improved in the last 20 years.

Why This Matters:  When we think about the security risks to our nation, we need to start counting infrastructure failure due to climate change as one of the most troubling.

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Energy Secretary Takes a Swipe at Big Banks That Won’t Invest In Arctic Drilling

Energy Secretary Takes a Swipe at Big Banks That Won’t Invest In Arctic Drilling

The Secretary of Energy stunningly accused the major financial institutions that refuse to now invest in Arctic oil and gas exploration of discrimination against the oil and gas industry and likened the decision to the banks’ refusal in the past to make loans to minorities.

Why This Matters:  Arctic drilling has been fought due to its environmental toll since the 1960s,  In 1980, Congress decreed that no exploratory drilling or production could occur without further congressional action — and it stayed that way until President Trump demanded authority to lease the land for drilling, despite the ample domestic supply of oil and gas.

 

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New Studies Point to More Extreme Heat and Storms in the U.S.

New Studies Point to More Extreme Heat and Storms in the U.S.

A study by The Earth Institute at Columbia University published last Friday in the Journal Science Advances found that the combined effect of extreme heat and humidity (known as the “wet bulb index”) is already exceeding in some locations for short durations of time the level that scientists thought would be the threshold of human survivability.

Why This Matters:  High heat and humidity combined is happening more frequently around the globe and has already resulted in massive death tolls due to climate change.

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JPMorgan Announces It Will Remove Former Exxon CEO As the Bank’s Lead Director

JPMorgan Announces It Will Remove Former Exxon CEO As the Bank’s Lead Director

In its most recent public corporate filings, JPMorgan Chase stated that it would be appointing a new lead independent director by the end of the summer of 2020, removing the former CEO of Exxon Mobil, Lee Raymond, after progressives and climate advocates publicly campaigned for his removal. 

Why This Matters:  Bill McKibben, the founder of 350.org wrote a high profile op/ed in the New York Times ten days ago arguing that the company was stuck in the past on climate change, and urging JP Morgan shareholders to vote Raymond out, as did New York City’s pension fund.

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Our Daily Planet Special Earth Day Interview with John Kerry

Our Daily Planet Special Earth Day Interview with John Kerry

  Former Secretary of State John Kerry now leads World War Zero — a coalition of people who are committed to addressing the climate crisis.  Tune in to their Earth Day Inside event tonight 6:30-7:30 PM ET. ODP:  What is your most indelible memory about the first Earth Day? JK:  My brother Cam got me involved in […]

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First Japan Underwhelmed, Now China May Be Late Announcing Their National Climate Plans

First Japan Underwhelmed, Now China May Be Late Announcing Their National Climate Plans

Due to the coronavirus-induced economic slowdown, Climate Home News and then Axios reported that China is delaying the release of its revised plans for how it will update its Paris Agreement targets until at least after the U.S. Presidential election.

Why This Matters:  The coronavirus cannot be an excuse to lower climate ambitions, instead it must be seen as an opportunity to elevate them.

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Mainstream News Media Ignored the Climate Crisis in 2019 — Let’s Talk About It

Mainstream News Media Ignored the Climate Crisis in 2019 — Let’s Talk About It

According to a recent study of news coverage in 2019 by the organization Media Matters, news shows on the major networks aired only 238 minutes of climate crisis coverage, which was actually up from 2018 significantly, but as a whole still made up only 0.7% of overall corporate broadcast nightly and Sunday morning news shows in 2019.

Why This Matters:  Major network news is a bellwether for the nation — if they are not talking about climate change, then neither is the American public.

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EU To Pass Europe-Wide Climate Law, But Will Miss Current Emission Reduction Goals

EU To Pass Europe-Wide Climate Law, But Will Miss Current Emission Reduction Goals

In a report published on Wednesday, the European Environment Agency said that Europe’s progress towards cutting greenhouse-gas emissions and boosting the share of renewables in the energy mix is not happening quickly enough and as a result, the EU will miss its goals.  Moreover, the EU can expect to confront heat waves that are more severe than recent record-breaking events every two years from 2050 on, The Telegraph reported.

Why This Matters:  The EU considers itself a climate leader globally and so missing these targets is a big deal.

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Annual UN Climate Meeting Opens With Strong Admonition by the Secretary General

Annual UN Climate Meeting Opens With Strong Admonition by the Secretary General

After another UN Environment Program report last week made clear that the gap between climate action and necessary progress continues to widen, the Secretary-General excoriated the assembled 190 governments’ climate negotiators on Sunday, saying that so far the world’s efforts to stop climate change have been “utterly inadequate” and warned that global warming could soon pass the “point of no return.” 

Why This Matters:  Unfortunately, the three largest emitting countries — the United States, China, and India — have sent only lower-level officials to represent their governments at the UN meeting.

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Climate Change And Environment Get Little Time In Democratic Debate – Again

Climate Change And Environment Get Little Time In Democratic Debate – Again

Two hours, ten candidates, four moderators, and less than 10 minutes of serious discussion of climate change in the Democratic Debate last night.  Only four of the ten candidates were asked a direct question or given a chance to provide a significant follow-up response on the issue that most agree is an “existential crisis” and the “#1 Priority” of several of the candidates.

Why This Matters:  Two questions and ten minutes is not enough time to discuss the existential crisis of our time. Period.

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Environment Breaks Through In Politics – Sierra Club Launches New Digital Ads

Environmental issues are breaking into the top tier for the 2020 election cycle as evidenced by the Sierra Club’s new digital advertising campaign calling on five senators and President Trump to address the climate crisis impacting communities across the country.  The ads highlight the poor environmental track records of President Trump and U.S. Senators Cory Gardner (R-CO), Joni Ernst (R-IA), Martha McSally (R-AZ), Mitt Romney (R-UT), and Thom Tillis (R-NC) — click on each name to watch the ad.

Why This Matters:  Environmental issues are much more important to voters now than in prior elections

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