3 Extreme Weather Events in 2016 ‘Could Not Have Happened’ Without Climate Change, Scientists Say

Three of 2016’s extreme weather events would have been impossible without human-caused climate change , according to new research. The Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society published a collection of papers Wednesday focused on examining the effect of climate change on 27 extreme weather events last year. The research found that climate change was a “significant driver” in 21 of these weather disasters, and that three events—the temperatures making 2016 the hottest year on record, the heat wave over Asia in the spring, and a “blob” of extremely warm water in the Pacific—”could not have happened” without climate change. Scientists say the certainty

Fossil Fuels Advocate Mike Pompeo May Replace ExxonMobil CEO Rex Tillerson as Secretary of State

The White House is readying a plan to push out former ExxonMobil CEO Rex Tillerson as Secretary of State in the coming weeks, multiple outlets reported Thursday. Tillerson’s troubled tenure at the State Department has been marked by frequent clashes with President Trump over policy as well as fierce opposition from career diplomats in the department. CIA director Mike Pompeo is thought to

New Mexico Tribes Step Up to Protect Land Before Fossil Fuels Vote

Native American tribes are voicing concerns and demanding input on regulations on fossil fuel development in a New Mexico county, in the latest wave of tribal voices growing louder on oil and gas development across the country. Sandoval County, home to 12 Native tribes, will hold a final vote in January on a draft ordinance to regulate oil and gas development in the county. In packed public meetings over the proposed ordinance last week, tribal leaders called out the lack of tribal input in the draft ordinance and raised concerns over the ordinance’s lack of protections for water , air and land resources. Santo Domingo Pueblo Gov. Robert Coriz, who says he was one of

Shadow U.S. Climate Delegation Promises World #WeAreStillIn Paris Agreement

A group of U.S. leaders, including California Gov. Jerry Brown and former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, reaffirmed the country’s commitment to its Paris agreement targets this weekend at the COP23 talks in Bonn, Germany. U.S. senators, governors, mayors, state senators and business leaders reiterated at the U.S. Climate Action Center that the U.S. is “still in” the Paris agreement. Some senators also met with international officials to assure them that they, along with

Peruvian Farmer Takes German Energy Giant to Court

A German court on Monday moved forward a case brought by a Peruvian farmer against a German utility alleging climate-related damages. Saul Luciano Lliuya claims in his suit that emissions from the German energy giant RWE have endangered his hometown of Huaraz by melting glaciers and swelling a mountain lake that threatens to flood the region. While RWE has no operations in Peru, the suit uses a 2013 study to estimate that the company is responsible for .05 percent of global emissions, and using that calculation seeks more than

Losses From California Wildfires Top $1 Billion, Expected to Rise ‘Dramatically’

Insured losses from fires in Northern California have topped $1 billion and are expected to rise “dramatically,” state insurance officials announced Thursday . The state estimates that the fires have now torched 8,400 buildings and left 42 dead, making these fires the deadliest in the state’s history. Fighting wildfire is now costing the U.S. billions of dollars each year as climate change continues to fuel the flames and rampant development into increasingly dry wildland areas prone to fire ups the risk posed to homes and businesses. For a deeper dive: California fire costs: Fox News , U.S. News Land development: Thomson Reuters Foundation Background: Climate Signals background on Napa fires , infographic on

Puerto Ricans Drinking Water From Hazardous Waste Sites

The ranking Democrat on the House Homeland Security Committee called for an investigation into the availability of potable water in Puerto Rico following reports Friday that residents are scrounging for water from hazardous waste sites. After the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency ( EPA ) confirmed residents were trying to access water from three Superfund sites, and following

Degraded Tropical Forests Now Release More Carbon Than They Store, New Study Finds

Tropical forests may no longer be acting as carbon sinks and could be releasing more carbon than they store, according to troubling new research. A study published Thursday in the journal Science finds that forests across Asia, Latin America and Africa release 425 metric tons of carbon per year, which is equivalent to nearly one-tenth of the U.S.’ annual carbon footprint. Researchers found nearly 70 percent of this loss is caused by small-scale degradation, the result of selective logging, drought and wildfire . All is

Toxic Aftereffects of Hurricane Harvey Plague Houston

The toxic aftereffects of Hurricane Harvey continue to plague Houston as the city rebuilds three weeks after the devastating storm. Testing conducted by the New York Times earlier this week found instances of E. coli contamination 135 times the legal limit in standing floodwaters around the city. ProPublica and the Texas Tribune reported Thursday that a private firm hired by environmental groups found “concerning” levels of benzene in neighborhoods near a Valero refinery. The U.S

‘Unprecedented,’ Historic Storm Dumps Trillions of Tons of Water on Texas

Hurricane Harvey slammed into the Texas coast this weekend, growing from a regenerated tropical depression into a Category 4 hurricane in less than 60 hours. The now-tropical storm has stalled inland over Texas, and the entire Houston metropolitan region is now flooding . With interstates under feet of water, and most of the streams and rivers near the city in flood stage, local authorities have asked boat owners to join rescue efforts. At least five people have died, and the

Red States Lead on Renewables

A sweeping bipartisan bill to reform energy policies and encourage the growth of renewable energy was introduced by conservative lawmakers in the North Carolina legislature this week. The consensus bill, the result of months of negotiations, would grant utilities’ request to reform various renewable energy laws, but includes incentives for the

31 Science Groups to Congress: Greenhouse Gases Emitted by Human Activities Is Primary Driver of Climate Change

A group of 31 of the country’s top science organizations sent a…