After a record 22 billion-dollar disasters in 2020, it's time to overhaul US disaster policy – here's how

NOAA released its list of climate and weather disasters that cost the nation more than $1 billion each. Like many climate and weather events this past year, it shattered the record.

Deb Niemeier, Clark Distinguished Chair and Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Maryland • conversation
Jan. 8, 2021 ~11 min

climate-change policy construction floods hurricanes storms global-warming natural-disasters wildfires government disaster-risk fema building disaster-management land-use building-codes 2020

After a record 22 billion-dollar disasters in 2020, it's time to make US disaster policy more effective and equitable – here's how

NOAA released its list of climate and weather disasters that cost the nation more than $1 billion each. Like many climate and weather events this past year, it shattered the record.

Deb Niemeier, Clark Distinguished Chair and Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Maryland • conversation
Jan. 8, 2021 ~11 min

policy construction floods hurricanes storms natural-disasters wildfires government disaster-risk fema building disaster-management land-use building-codes 2020

Plastic pipes are polluting drinking water systems after wildfires - it's a risk in urban fires, too

A new study shows how toxic chemicals like benzene are leaching into water systems after nearby fires. The pipes don't have to burn – they just have to heat up.

Kristofer P. Isaacson, Ph.D. Student, Purdue University • conversation
Dec. 14, 2020 ~9 min

disaster water-pollution drinking-water natural-disasters wildfires environmental-health plumbing vocs

The 2020 Atlantic hurricane season was a record-breaker, and it's raising more concerns about climate change

There were so many tropical storms in 2020, forecasters exhausted the list of names and started using Greek letters. And that's only one reason 2020 was extreme.

Allison Wing, Assistant Professor of Meteorology, Florida State University • conversation
Nov. 30, 2020 ~8 min

climate-change hurricanes global-warming sea-surface-temperatures natural-disasters temperature wind enviornment

Why COVID-19 has left the UK especially vulnerable to flooding this winter

La Niña means we are forecast a wet winter – and people are struggling and ill-prepared.

Gabrielle Powell, PhD Candidate in Environmental Science, University of Reading • conversation
Nov. 30, 2020 ~7 min

flooding floods natural-disasters la-nina

The 2020 Atlantic hurricane season was a record-smasher – and it's raising more concerns about climate change

There were so many tropical storms in 2020, forecasters exhausted the list of names and started using Greek letters. And that's only one reason 2020 was extreme.

Allison Wing, Assistant Professor of Meteorology, Florida State University • conversation
Nov. 30, 2020 ~8 min

climate-change hurricanes global-warming sea-surface-temperatures natural-disasters temperature wind enviornment

Oil field operations likely triggered earthquakes in California a few miles from the San Andreas Fault

California was thought to be an exception, a place where oil field operations and tectonic faults apparently coexisted without much problem. Not any more.

Thomas H. Goebel, Assistant Professor, University of Memphis • conversation
Nov. 10, 2020 ~7 min

earthquakes seismology oil natural-disasters california natural-gas fossil-fuel-industry seismic-activity drilling

Wildfires force thousands to evacuate near Los Angeles: Here's how the 2020 Western fire season got so extreme

The 2020 wildfire season has shattered records across the West. It's a trend that's headed in a dangerous direction.

Mohammad Reza Alizadeh, Ph.D. Student, McGill University • conversation
Oct. 27, 2020 ~8 min

climate-change climate science heat-wave drought natural-disasters wildfires weather

California wildfires pass 4 million acres burned, doubling previous record – that's a lot of toxic smoke

To understand the risks of wildfire smoke, it helps to understand the chemicals people are breathing.

Joshua S. Fu, John D. Tickle Professor of Engineering and Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Tennessee • conversation
Oct. 2, 2020 ~8 min

health environment pollution wildfire chemicals air-pollution natural-disasters wildfires smoke

Wildfire smoke is laced with toxic chemicals – here's how they got there

To understand the risks of wildfire smoke, it helps to understand the chemicals people are breathing.

Joshua S. Fu, John D. Tickle Professor of Engineering and Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Tennessee • conversation
Oct. 2, 2020 ~8 min

health environment pollution wildfire chemicals air-pollution natural-disasters wildfires smoke

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