• WATER SECURITYWater Scarcity Drives EU Countries to Restrict Access to Drinking Water

    By Tim Schauenberg

    Climate change is making itself felt across the continent, as severe droughts and scarce rain have forced water restrictions in southern European countries. In northern Italy, more than 100 cities and towns have imposed water consumption limits on residents.

  • CLIMATE CHALLENGESWinners Announced in DHS $195K Challenge to Counter Extreme Temperatures

    DHS announced the winners of the Cooling Solutions Challenge prize competition. The winners were each awarded funding, which totaled $195,000, for their innovative and creative ideas that sought climate-friendly cooling solutions to protect people in extreme heat conditions.

  • WILDFIRESUnprecedented Change in Europe’s Fire Regime Driven by Climate Change

    A new study reveals an unprecedented change in the fire regime in Europe which is related to climate change. The study detected summer and spring seasons with unprecedented values of fire risks over the last years, so many areas of southern Europe and the Mediterranean are reaching extreme conditions conducive to fires.

  • PLANETARY SECURITYResearchers Simulate Defense of the Earth

    Sixty-six million years ago, a giant asteroid impact on the Earth likely caused the extinction of the dinosaurs. Currently no known asteroid poses an immediate threat. But if one day a large asteroid were to be discovered on a collision course with Earth, it might have to be deflected from its trajectory to prevent catastrophic consequences.

  • COASTAL CHALLENGESSea Levels Rise and Floods Intensify, So Governments Consider Managed Retreat

    By Martin Kuebler

    As climate changes, rising sea levels and disastrous flooding are becoming ever more common, and they could force billions to move during the next decades. Instead of trying to prolong the inevitable by building sea walls, importing sand to build protective dunes and berms, planting mangrove, and raising structures on stilts, some communities are already adapting: They are developing plans to move away from vulnerable areas to higher ground inland.

  • CLIMATE CHALLENGESJune Heat Waves Break Records Across the Globe

    By Lina Tran

    It’s not your imagination: This summer is already hotter than normal, from the Russian Arctic to the muggy Gulf Coast. With July and August — usually the hottest summer months — still to come, the early extreme heat offers a grim picture of summer’s growing danger.

  • DISASTERSExploring the Role of Place Attachment Following California Wildfires

    Homeowners across the United States are not only experiencing higher mortgage rates and property costs, they’re also at risk of damage from an increasing number of disasters linked to natural hazards, including wildfires. 

  • FLOOD INSURANCEThe Administration’s New Vision for the National Flood Insurance Program

    By Zoya Teirstein

    The Biden administration is proposing a major overhaul to the National Flood Insurance Program, or NFIP — the main source of insurance for homeowners who are required to or choose to obtain coverage for flooding. The administration’s flood insurance reforms could improve transparency — and make some Americans more vulnerable.

  • WATER SECURITYClimate Changes Lead to Water Imbalance, Conflict in Tibetan Plateau

    Climate change is putting an enormous strain on global water resources, and according to researchers, the Tibetan Plateau is suffering from a water imbalance so extreme that it could lead to an increase in international conflicts.

  • COASTAL CHALLENGESDeveloping Novel Hybrid Reef-Mimicking Structures

    Despite previous efforts to implement storm mitigation solutions — including concrete breakwaters — damage due to storm surge and flooding continues to devastate coastal areas around the world. In response to these threats, DARPA has launched the Reefense program to develop self-healing, hybrid biological, and engineered reef-mimicking structures to protect civilian and DoD infrastructure, personnel by mitigating damage related to coastal flooding, erosion and storm surge.

  • CLIMATE CHALLENGESMost Major U.S. Cities Underprepared for Rising Temperatures

    This month, Denver, Las Vegas and Phoenix all posted record high temperatures. And across the nation, Americans are ramping up for a scorching summer. Yet despite more frequent and intense heat waves on the horizon, cities are underprepared to deal with the challenge.

  • WATER SECURITYCritical Global Water Questions

    Recent intense heatwaves in India and widespread U.S. droughts have highlighted the need for a global approach to tackling chronic water shortages. The problem is that most governments are not equipped to deal with these challenges of water scarcity, sanitation and climate dynamics.

  • DAM EMERGENCIESPreparing Communities for Dam-Related Emergencies

    There are more than 90,000 dams registered in the U.S. National Inventory of Dams across the country. But we rarely hear about them until the worst happens: one of them fails. Extreme weather events and the aging dam infrastructure are making dam-related emergency action plans more critical than ever.

  • FLOODSUncertainties in Flood Risk Estimates

    Flood frequency analysis is a technique used to estimate flood risk, providing statistics such as the “100-year flood” or “500-year flood” that are critical to infrastructure design, dam safety analysis, and flood mapping in flood-prone areas. But the method used to calculate these flood frequencies is due for an update.

  • SEARCH & RESCUEDangerous Rescue Situations: Unmanned Vehicles Could Lead the Way

    First responders frequently encounter situations where an incident scene could be either potentially toxic, like an industrial accident, or physically dangerous, like a collapsed building or crumbling hillside. In these instances, the job still needs to get done, but performing it with an Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) or an Unmanned Ground Vehicles (UGV) will be as effective in accomplishing the search & rescue mission, but less risky for the first responders.