Climate Impact Report – 06/06
Tropical Storm Alex, with 60 MPH winds, became the first named storm of the 2022 Atlantic hurricane season and dumped nearly 15 inches of rain on parts of South Florida on Saturday.
Climate change is forcing schools to close early for ‘heat days.’
4 mill years
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration officials said carbon dioxide levels rose to 421 parts per million, more than at any time in at least 4 million years.
Key Facts Of The Day 6/6
Storms and Flooding
- Tropical Storm Alex, with 60 MPH winds, became the first named storm of the 2022 Atlantic hurricane season and dumped nearly 15 inches of rain on parts of South Florida on Saturday.
- Miami streets were inundated with flood water, stranding vehicles in water up to the wheel wells.
- A no-swim order was issued by Miami-Dade County after storm sewers overflowed across the region.
- Before entering the Gulf, the storm killed three people in Cuba, damaged homes, and severed electricity to parts of the island.
- Last Thursday, Colorado State University updated its 2022 hurricane forecast, predicting 20 named storms and 10 hurricanes.
- Officials at CSU’s Tropical Meteorology Project expect five of those storms will reach major hurricane strength.
- As of Monday, there are currently 8 large active wildfires that have burned 712,830 across AK, AZ, CO, and NM. As of Monday, 28,459 wildfires have burned 1,952,998 acres across the country.
- In Alaska, 1 fire has burned 20,000 acres as of Monday.
- In Arizona, 1 fire has burned 7,598 acres as of Monday.
- In Colorado, 1 fire has burned 242 acres as of Monday.
- In New Mexico, 5 fires have burned 684,990 acres as of Monday.
- Last Wednesday, new restrictions on outdoor water use went into effect for more than 6 million residents in the Los Angeles area.
- The rules, set by the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, limit outdoor watering to one day per week in many jurisdictions — while others opted to stay below a volume limit.
- The goal is to cut water use by 35% as California is in its third consecutive year of severe drought.
- If conditions don’t improve by September, Metropolitan Water District officials have warned they might ban outdoor water use entirely.
- California water authorities also adopted emergency rules outlawing the use of drinking water to irrigate “nonfunctional” grass, such as decorative strips outside businesses and in residential developments.
- Climate change is forcing schools to close early for ‘heat days.’
- Temperatures kept rising in Philadelphia and Baltimore and it became too hot to keep students in classrooms without air conditioning.
- Regions where extreme heat was once rare — from the Northeast to the Pacific Northwest — now periodically find their buildings unbearably hot.
- Urban areas, in particular, tend to have a dangerous combination of older buildings, less money to upgrade them, and concentrated heat.
- Urban schools often lack green space and shade. Asphalt often covers their playgrounds and other open spaces, radiating heat during the summer.
- A study by the Government Accountability Office found that about 41% of public school districts in the United States need to update or replace the heating, cooling, and ventilation systems in at least half of their schools.
- In New York and New Jersey, teachers’ unions are pushing for state laws to address what they say are intolerable classroom temperatures.
- People living on low incomes in cities will bear the brunt of climate change’s scorching temperatures and urban flooding, widening the vulnerability gap between the rich and the poor.
- Urban areas bake hotter than rural areas because of less tree cover and impervious dark surfaces like roads, parking lots, and skyscrapers that radiate heat — features that prevent water from soaking into the ground during storm events.
- Communities of color, seniors, and other vulnerable populations often lack access to health care, energy-efficient housing, or savings to afford sudden spikes in energy bills during extreme heat.
- Atlanta consistently tops lists of cities with high income inequality and high proportions of low-income households’ incomes spent on energy bills.
- Populations that are most vulnerable to higher temperatures exacerbated by climate change live in three predominantly Black neighborhoods in southwest Atlanta where the majority of housing is more than 50 years old.
- National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration officials said there is more carbon dioxide in the atmosphere now than at any time in at least 4 million years.
- Carbon dioxide levels rose to a peak of 421 parts per million in May, the highest level in human history.
- As the amount of carbon dioxide increases, the planet keeps warming, with effects like increased flooding, more extreme heat, drought, and worsening wildfires that are already being experienced by millions of people worldwide.
- A new study found that the U.S. can achieve its goal of cutting greenhouse gas emissions by 50% by 2030 if it implements several goals, including operating the electric grid with 80% clean energy and ensuring most cars sold by the end of the decade are electric.
New Reports And Data
- A June 2022 study found that in the European Alps climate change caused a 77% increase in vegetation above the treeline and a 10% decline in snow cover.
- A May 2022 study found that if human-caused global warming goes unchecked, the Siberian tundra could disappear completely.
- A May 2022 study found that the U.S. can achieve its goal of cutting greenhouse gas emissions by 50% by 2030 if it implements several climate action goals.
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