Extreme Weather

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Hurricane Irene: one of the 10 costliest catastrophes in the nation’s history

Hurricane Irene: one of the 10 costliest catastrophes in the nation’s history

Recovery from Hurricane Irene is taxing the rescue and recovery resources of areas of the eastern United States hit last weekend by 115-mile-per-hour winds. Coastal residents are dealing with damage from extreme wind and storm surge, and towns hundreds of miles inland are experiencing severe flooding and rushing water that have resulted in hundreds of […]

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Is High Heat The New Normal?

Is High Heat The New Normal?

Forest fires have already left an indelible imprint in 2011, according to Renata D’Aliesio’s article, 2011 shaping up to be the year of the forest fire, published in the Globe and Mail. Flames razed or heavily damaged nearly 500 homes and businesses in the northern Alberta town of Slave Lake, while the threat of destruction […]

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Drought: A Creeping Disaster

Drought: A Creeping Disaster

In the American south, 14 states are baking in blast-furnace conditions — from Arizona, which is battling the largest wildfire in its history, to Florida, where fires have burned some 200,000 acres so far. Climatologists call drought a creeping disaster because its effects are not felt at once; however, there is little disagreement about the […]

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When the Nile runs dry

When the Nile runs dry

Affluent countries like Saudi Arabia, South Korea, China and India are acquiring or leasing huge tracts of fertile plains across the African continent to produce wheat, rice and corn for consumption back home, in response to rising global food prices and reduced exportation of commodities. Some of these land acquisitions are enormous. South Korea, which […]

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Peak Coffee! How Can Adaptation to Climate Change Help?

Peak Coffee! How Can Adaptation to Climate Change Help?

For three years, abnormally wet conditions have caused massive flooding in Colombia’s flatlands and damage to coffee crops, causing production last year to fall to 9.5 million 60-kilogram bags from 12 million in 2007. Production is only part of the problem, as stockpiling can offset annual fluctuations in supply. Global coffee inventories have fallen to […]

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Yangtze river drought in China points to the need for climate change adaptation planning

Yangtze river drought in China points to the need for climate change adaptation planning

An article published this week in the UK’s Guardian newspaper – ‘China crisis over Yangtze river drought forces drastic dam measures’ – warns that Asia’s biggest river, the Yangtze, is suffering its worst drought in 50 years. The extreme dry spell is damaging crops, threatening wildlife and aquatic ecosystems, and raising widespread alarm about China’s […]

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Extreme Events: Adapting Infrastructure videos online

Extreme Events: Adapting Infrastructure videos online

Speaker Presentation videos from the 2008 conference Extreme Events: Adapting Infrastructure are online on the ACT YouTube channel. Featured speakers include Cameron Ells, Chris Corps, Efrosini Drimoussis, Erik Sparling, Ewa Ciuk, Gordon McBean, and Sarah Burch. On October 17, 2008, ACT hosted Extreme Events: Adapting Infrastructure, where conference participants explored practical considerations, opportunities, motivations and […]

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Climate Change Analysis Predicts Increased Fatalities from Heat Waves

Climate Change Analysis Predicts Increased Fatalities from Heat Waves

Global climate change is anticipated to drive increasingly extreme weather phenomena, such as heat waves that impact human health, in the coming decades. A recent analysis led by researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health calculates that the city of Chicago could experience between 166 and 2,217 excess deaths per year attributable […]

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