Back in 2020 (which can seem like a lifetime ago), only 4% Americans surveyed by Consumer Reports said they would definitely buy an electric car. But what a difference a couple of years, and a tremendous rise in gas prices, can make: In a new survey of 8,000 Americans released last week, the number who said they would definitely buy an EV jumped to 14%, and more than a third of those surveyed would consider going all electric.
Atlantic hurricane season is upon us, and the forecast is for storm activity 65% above normal. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Climate Prediction Center’s 2022 Atlantic Hurricane Season forecast predicts 14 to 21 named storms with winds of 39 mph or higher, with six to 10 of those possibly becoming hurricanes with winds of 74 mph or higher, and three to six possibly becoming major hurricanes with winds of 111 mph or higher. It’s also a La Niña year, the weather pattern that contributed to the 2010-2012 hurricane season that produced Irene and Sandy (map shows Sandy hitting the East Coast on October 29, 2012).
It should come as no surprise that climate change plays a role in weather patterns, including hurricanes. And while there doesn’t seem to be much evidence as yet that excessive emissions and global warming are causing more frequent storms, there is research suggesting that these are factors in storm intensity and therefore destructiveness.
Climate chaos, soaring inflation, drought, war- if you’ve been following the news lately, you’ve seen the dire predictions of a looming food crisis. And even more people will need food in the years to come. In fact, a new study from Stanford University’s Carnegie Institute estimates that the global food supply will need to double by 2050 in order to feed everyone adequately.
At the same time, we can’t meet this need by simply doubling the amount of land we use to grow crops. Deforestation and habitat destruction are among the forces driving climate change in the first place. But according to the Carnegie Institute study, we don’t have to. We can use the farmland and technology we already have to raise crop production yields to levels that will be sufficient to meet our future needs.
One of the most powerful tools we have to do that is sustainable irrigation.
This spring, NYC has already experienced a few days of unseasonably hot temperatures- and we should all expect many more to come over the next few months, both in New York and across the US.
Climate scientists at the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Association (NOAA) released their latest forecast on May 19th, and it shows a strong likelihood of above-average temperatures in the Mountain and Southwestern regions and the Northeast, which could also experience above average rainfall in June, July and August, thanks to La Niña, the global phenomenon that can cause extra storms during hurricane season.
Governor Kathy Hochul announced a new framework for New York State to increase its distributed solar capacity to 10 gigawatts by 2030- enough to power 700,000 homes. NYSERDA and the Public Service Commission have created a new roadmap to show how these numbers can be achieved, making the NY-Sun Initiative one of the largest and most inclusive programs of its kind in the US.
“The existential fight against climate change demands historic investments in renewable energy to bring us closer to a brighter, greener future,” Governor Hochul said. “This roadmap to expand the NY-Sun initiative into a nation-leading blueprint for the development of distributed solar meets the moment to supercharge our economy and advance our climate goals.”
On April 4th, the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released its latest report, and the message was clear: If governments and industry act now-right now!-mitigating some of the effects from global warming is still possible. But we are drawing ever nearer to the point when even that won’t be possible, and humanity will be set on a chaotic and dangerous course.
“We are at a crossroads. The decisions we make now can secure a livable future. We have the tools and know-how required to limit warming,” said IPCC Chair Hoesung Lee. “I am encouraged by climate action being taken in many countries. There are policies, regulations and market instruments that are proving effective. If these are scaled up and applied more widely and equitably, they can support deep emissions reductions and stimulate innovation.”