We broke the record. Again.
Last month was the hottest May on record, and the past five months were the warmest start to a year on record, according to new data released by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. It's a continuation of trends that made 2014 the most blistering year for the surface of the planet, in records going back to 1880.
The animation below shows the Earth’s warming climate, recorded in monthly measurements from land and sea over more than 135 years. Temperatures are displayed in degrees above or below the 20th-century average. Thirteen of the 14 hottest years are in the 21st century, and 2015 is on track to break the heat record again. It isn't even close.
We broke the record. Again.
Pope Francis has released his encyclical on climate change, urging for worldwide environmental policy and warning that humans threaten the planet.
Climate change "represents one of the principal challenges facing humanity in our day. Its worst impact will probably be felt by developing countries in coming decades," the Pope wrote.
Francis has called for renewable fuel subsidies and "maximum energy efficiency." He urges the use of public transportation, carpooling and recycling.
The energy industry agrees with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency — at least when it comes to the findings of an EPA study on hydraulic fracturing.
Michael Krancer, partner and chair of the energy industry team at law firm Blank Rome LLP, said a draft report on the EPA study shows that fracking is “safe,” with “no widespread issues.”
The Cuomo administration is sticking by its decision to ban hydrofracking in New York despite a federal report Thursday that found it caused no “widespread” water contamination.
A spokesman for the state’s Department of Environmental Conservation said New York’s decision not to allow the controversial natural gas drilling process was based on factors beyond possible water contamination.
Fracking for shale oil and gas has not led to widespread pollution of drinking water, a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency draft report said on Thursday, although it warned some drilling activities could potentially cause health risks.
The study, requested by Congress and five years in the making, said fracking could contaminate drinking water under certain conditions, such as when fluids used in the process leaked into the water table.
Researchers estimated that if greenhouse gas emissions continue to rise at the current rate, the glaciers in the Everest mountain region could lose over 70 percent of their volume by the year 2100.
The study warns the famous mountains are extremely sensitive to climate warming, and major ice loss should be anticipated throughout the 21st century, the European Geosciences Union reported.
The atolls of the Marshall Islands are narrow and practically level with the sea, leaving their 68,000 residents nowhere to move to as a rising sea and increasingly frequent floods threatens to swamp the country. Unlike in many parts of the world where climate change often seems a distant threat, for the Marshallese it is already a daily reality.
Keslynna’s grandmother, Rusina Rusin, said the land has been in her family for too many generations to count, passed down from mother to daughter in the country’s matrilineal social system. She said she has noticed the increasing unpredictability of the weather.
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