Climate Impact Report – 09/22
President Joe Biden issued a major disaster declaration on Wednesday for Puerto Rico, unlocking additional federal assistance as island residents navigate the aftermath of Hurricane Fiona.
As a heat dome formed over the Midwest, dozens of high-temperature records were set in cities.
Solar & Water
A September 2022 study found that rooftop solar cells can be a boon for water conservation, and a given household may save on average 16,200 gallons of water per year by installing rooftop solar.
Key Facts Of The Day 09/22
- As of Thursday morning, category 4 Hurricane Fiona was located 455 miles southwest of Bermuda with maximum sustained winds of 130 MPH and was moving north-northeast at 13 MPH.
- The storm is expected to pass just to the west of the island Thursday night before approaching the Canadian province of Nova Scotia on Friday.
- President Joe Biden issued a major disaster declaration on Wednesday for Puerto Rico, unlocking additional federal assistance as island residents navigate the aftermath of Hurricane Fiona.
- The major disaster declaration allows FEMA to directly help individuals pay for temporary housing and home repairs, provide low-cost loans to cover uninsured property losses, and pay for other programs to help individuals and business owners recover from the storm.
- More than a million people in Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic are waking up without power or running water again Thursday as crews work to repair critical utilities disabled by Hurricane Fiona.
- Power outages continue to affect the island, with LUMA Energy, the private company managing Puerto Rico’s grid, saying it has restored power to 376,000 of its 1.5 million customers as of Wednesday morning.
- In Puerto Rico, where Fiona delivered flooding rains and an islandwide blackout as it made landfall Sunday, more than 450,000 people lacked or had intermittent water service.
- The first major hurricane of this year’s Atlantic season has killed at least five people across the Caribbean: one in Guadeloupe, two in Puerto Rico, and two in the Dominican Republic.
- As of Thursday, there are currently 94 large active wildfires that have burned 900,748 across CA, ID, MT, OK, OR, UT, WA, and WY. As of Thursday, 51,811 wildfires have burned 6,682,998 acres across the country.
- In California, 6 fires have burned 154,641 acres as of Thursday.
- The Mosquito Fire has burned 76,427 acres and is 49% contained as of Thursday.
- In Oregon, 6 fires have burned 325,632 acres as of Thursday.
- The Cedar Creek Fire has burned 113,637 acres and is 14% contained as of Thursday.
- Smoke from wildfires has worsened over the past decade, potentially reversing decades of improvements in Western air quality made under the Clean Air Act.
- Some areas in the Western United States had increases in particulate pollution from smoke that were about the same amount as the improvements in air quality from regulating factories and other point source pollution.
- As climate change intensifies fire risk across the country and smoke plumes can travel thousands of miles from their source, no one is safe from the effects.
- Particle pollution has been linked to chronic heart and lung conditions, as well as other negative health effects like cognitive decline, depression, and premature birth.
- The new research indicates that the health risk is rising as the hot and dry conditions for wildfires continue to worsen with climate change.
- As a heat dome formed over the Midwest, dozens of high-temperature records were set in cities.
- On Monday: Wichita, Kansas hit 100 degrees, Salina, Kansas hit 102 degrees, Russell, Kansas hit 103 degrees, Joplin, Missouri hit 97 degrees, Columbia, Missouri hit 97 degrees, Paducah, Kentucky hit 97 degrees, and Rapid City, South Dakota hit 95 degrees.
- On Tuesday, Nashville, Tennesse hit 99 degrees, Topeka, Kansas hit 100 degrees, Concordia, Kansas hit 102 degrees, Lincoln, Nebraska hit 103 degrees, Colorado Springs, Colorado hit 91 degrees, and Idaho Falls, Idaho hit 86 degrees.
- By Thursday, a cold front pushing through the Midwest will bring some much-needed relief from the heat, dropping temperatures down into the 50s and 60s in spots that had seen 100 degree readings days earlier.
- From June 1 through September 12, at least 356 all-time heat records from California to Maine from a subset of weather stations were tied or broken.
New Reports and Data
- A September 2022 study found that five years after the water crisis, 1 in 5 Flint, Michigan residents has PTSD.
- A September 2022 study found that rooftop solar cells can be a boon for water conservation, and a given household may save on average 16,200 gallons of water per year by installing rooftop solar.
- A September 2022 study found that smoke from wildfires has worsened over the past decade, potentially reversing decades of improvements in Western air quality made under the Clean Air Act.
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