• Heat, Drought, Population Growth Stress Aquifers Which Supply Water to Millions of Texans

    Diminishing springs and aquifers due to heat, drought and high for demand water highlight the urgency for Central Texas conservation districts to prioritize climate-focused management, potentially involving reduced pumping for sustainability.

  • Multi-Billion-Dollar Risk to Economic Activity from Climate Extremes Affecting Ports

    More than $122 billion of economic activity - $81 billion in international trade - is at risk from the impact of extreme climate events, according to new research. Systemic impacts – those risks faced due to knock-on effects within global shipping, trade and supply chains network - will hit ports and economies around the world, even if the local ports are not directly affected by extreme events.

  • Record-Warm Sea Surface Temperatures to Cause “Above Normal” Atlantic Hurricane Season

    Scientists at NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center have increased their prediction for the ongoing 2023 Atlantic hurricane season from a near-normal level of activity to an above-normal level of activity. The reason: current ocean and atmospheric conditions, such as record-warm Atlantic sea surface temperatures, are likely to counterbalance the usually limiting atmospheric conditions associated with the ongoing El Nino event.

  • FEMA Maps Said They Weren’t in a Flood Zone. Then Came the Rain.

    The most common reference for flood risk are the flood insurance rate maps, also known as 100-year floodplain maps, that the Federal Emergency Management Agency, or FEMA, produces. They designate so-called special flood hazard areas that have a roughly 1 percent chance of inundation in any given year. Properties within those zones are subject to more stringent building codes and regulations that, among other things, require anyone with a government-backed mortgage to carry flood insurance. Flaws in federal flood maps leave millions unprepared. Some are trying to fix that.

  • Moving Communities Away from Flooding Risks with Minimal Harm

    As sea levels rise and flooding becomes more frequent, many countries are considering a controversial strategy: relocation of communities. A Stanford analysis of planned relocations around the world reveals a blueprint for positive outcomes.

  • First Three Weeks of July 2023 Warmest on Record, Breaking Global Temperature Records

    Following the hottest June on record and a series of extreme weather events, including heatwaves in Europe, North America and Asia, and wildfires in Canada and Greece, show that the first three weeks of July have already broken several significant records. The first three weeks of the month was the warmest three-week period on record.

  • Paying the Costs of Climate Resilience

    The idea that climate pollution can be eliminated by political edict overestimates political power and underestimates economic power. It is not simply powerful economic interests that influence public policy, but the sense of economic well-being perceived and experienced by the mass public. The maintenance of that sense of well-being is a critical foundation of political stability. The transition to a renewable resource-based economy must be careful to reinforce and not undermine that sense of well-being.

  • One- to Four-Family Properties with Multiple Losses Insured by the National Flood Insurance Program

    What are the characteristics of properties that have experienced multiple flood losses (e.g., percentage of overall claims payments, number of losses, and structure characteristics)? What are the socioeconomic characteristics of multiple loss property (MLP) households and the communities in which they are located? What percentage of MLPs have been mitigated, what are the socioeconomics characteristics of neighborhoods where MLPs have been mitigated, and how effective has mitigation been in reducing risk?

  • The Ground Is Deforming, and Buildings Aren’t Ready

    There is a “silent hazard” lurking underneath our major global cities, and our buildings were not designed to handle it. With Chicago as a living lab space, Northwestern study links underground climate change to variations beneath urban areas.

  • Florida’s Home Insurance Crisis Isn’t Going Away

    It’s hard to make money selling home insurance in Florida. For one thing, the state is very vulnerable to hurricanes, and those hurricanes are getting stronger thanks to climate change. A legal loophole has made the state a hotbed for fraudulent litigation over insurance claims, and companies lose even more money fighting those lawsuits. And reinsurers are charging insurance companies much higher fees owing to climate change-driven disaster losses.

  • Earth Just Had Its Hottest June on Record

    The world just sweltered through its hottest June in the 174-year global climate record. Additionally, Earth’s ocean surface temperature anomaly — which indicates how much warmer or cooler temperatures are from the long-term average — were the highest ever recorded.

  • Adapting to Wildfires in a Warming World

    Recent wildfires in Canada and California offer a preview of a world made far more dangerous by climate change, one in which smoke and fire exact an ever-increasing toll on public health and the economy.

  • Climate Change Is Increasing Stress on Thousands of Aging Dams Across the U.S.

    There are more than 91,000 dams across the U.S., in all 50 states, with diverse designs and purposes. The average dam age is 60 years, and more than 8,000 dams are over 90 years old. The American Society of Civil Engineers’ report card for the nation’s infrastructure gave U.S. dams a “D” grade.

  • As Unprecedented Rainfalls Occur More Frequently, What Can Be Done About the Resulting Flash Floods?

    Record rainfall is wreaking havoc in northern India and New York state as flash floods inundate communities. Experts have called for better resilience through ‘weatherproofing.’

  • Extreme Heat Will Cost the U.S. $1 Billion in Health Care Costs — This Summer Alone

    Extreme heat — summertime temperatures and humidity that exceed the historical average — is being made more frequent and intense by climate change. High temperatures could lead to 235,000 ER visits and 56,000 hospital admissions for heat-related conditions annually.