• Securing Domestic Supply Chain of Critical Materials

    DOE announced $30 million in funding for 13 national lab and university-led research projects to develop new technologies that will help secure the supply of critical materials that build clean energy technologies.

  • Can Burying Power Lines Protect Storm-Wracked Electric Grids? Not Always

    Electricity is critical for health, safety and comfort. People wonder whether their electricity service might be more secure if those lines were buried underground. But I’ve studied this question for utilities and regulators, and the answer is not straightforward. There are many ways to make power grids more resilient, but they are all costly, require the involvement of many agencies, businesses and power customers, and may not solve the problem.

  • DOD Imagery Information Aids Wildland Firefighters

    With continuing significant fire activity in the western United States this year, the Department of Defense (DoD) is delivering requested personnel, equipment, and facilities, to assist our Federal, State, and local partners fighting wildland fires. One of the tools provided by the DoD is the Firefly system pilot program (Firefly), a capability from the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA). 

  • Future Flooding in Venice: Facing Sea Level Rise

    A new assessment of flood risk in Venice indicates that the impact of higher emissions on relative sea level rise during this century will be critical in planning future defense infrastructure for Venice and other coastal cities.

  • A Subway Flood Expert Explains What Needs to Be Done to Stop Underground Station Deluges

    Subway stations in New York were inundated with water following heavy rain on 1 September 2021, and other cities around the world have also experienced similar inundations. “Climate change isn’t a matter of the future; its effects are happening right now,” says one expert.

  • Mitigating Hazards with Vulnerability in Mind

    From tropical storms to landslides, the form and frequency of natural hazards vary widely. To mitigate natural hazards equitably, an MIT Ph.D. candidate is incorporating social vulnerability into resilience engineering and hazard recovery.

  • More Weather-Related Disasters Over Past 50 Years, Causing More Damage but Fewer Deaths

    A disaster related to a weather, climate, or water hazard occurred every day on average over the past 50 years – killing 115 people and causing $ 202 million in losses daily. But while the number of climate change-driven disasters has increased by a factor of five over the 50-year period, the number of deaths decreased almost three-fold. thanks to improved early warnings and disaster management.

  • As Western U.S. Is Experiencing a 1,000 Year Drought, Desalination Could Be a Solution

    The Western United States is currently experiencing what one paleoclimatologist called “potentially the worst drought in 1,200 years.” The region has had many droughts in the past, including “megadroughts” that last decades, but climate change is making dry years drier and wet years wetter. One possible solution is the desalination of seawater, but is it a silver bullet?

  • At Least 23 Killed in Flooding in New York City, New Jersey

    At least 23 people have died across New York City and New Jersey as a result of the historic flash flooding caused by the weather system formerly known as Hurricane Ida. The storm dumped so much rain in New York City that the local National Weather Service issued its first flash flood emergency for NYC and the neighboring city of Newark, New Jersey.

  • New Orleans Residents Have Decisions to Make as Long Recovery from Hurricane Ida Begins

    New Orleans and utility officials spent Monday assessing the severity of the damage, but private energy provider Entergy Corporation confirmed that 216 substations and 2,000 miles of transmission lines — including a tower that collapsed along the Mississippi River — are down in Louisiana, leaving more than 1 million residents without electricity. Entergy promises a team of 20,000 to repair the damage, but it’s unclear how long that will take.

  • Autonomous Drones Could Speed Up Search and Rescue after Flash Floods, Hurricanes and Other Disasters

    Rescuers already use drones in some cases, but most require individual pilots who fly the unmanned aircraft by remote control. That limits how quickly rescuers can view an entire affected area, and it can delay aid from reaching victims. Autonomous drones could cover more ground faster, especially if they could identify people in need and notify rescue teams.

  • Flood control: Seeking Community-Driven Answers to Living with Flooding

    Researchers have used a localized flooding event to envision how human beings can live with the threat of water invading their living and working spaces.

  • Extreme Sea Levels to Become Much More Common Worldwide

    Extreme sea-level events are the result of a combination of tide, waves, and storm surge. Because of rising temperatures, an extreme sea level event that would have been expected to occur once every 100 years, currently is expected to occur, on average, every year.

  • Improving Flood Projections

    Climate change will lead to more and stronger floods, mainly due to the increase of more intense heavy rainfall. In order to assess how exactly flood risks and the severity of floods will change over time, it is particularly helpful to consider two different types of such extreme precipitation events.

  • 2020 Was Among Three Warmest Years on Record

    A new State of the Climate report confirmed that 2020 was among the three warmest years in records dating to the mid-1800s, even with a cooling La Niña influence in the second half of the year. The major indicators of climate change continued to reflect trends consistent with a warming planet. Several markers such as sea level, ocean heat content, and permafrost once again broke records set just one year prior.