California

Resilience System


2017 U.S. billion-dollar weather and climate disasters: a historic year in context

           

This map depicts the general location of the sixteen weather and climate disasters assessed to cause at least one billion dollars in direct damages during 2017.

climate.gov - by Adam B. Smith - January 8, 2018

NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI) tracks U.S. weather and climate events that have great economic and societal impacts (www.ncdc.noaa.gov/billions). Since 1980, the U.S. has sustained 219 weather and climate disasters where the overall damage costs reached or exceeded $1 billion (including adjustments based on the Consumer Price Index, as of December 2017). The cumulative costs for these 219 events exceed $1.5 trillion.

During 2017, the U.S. experienced a historic year of weather and climate disasters.  In total, the U.S. was impacted by 16 separate billion-dollar disaster events including: three tropical cyclones, eight severe storms, two inland floods, a crop freeze, drought and wildfire.

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It's Early in the Flu Season, but It's Shaping Up to Be a Nasty One

           

cbsnews.com - by Jonathan Lapook - December 26, 2017

As the holiday season continues, the U.S. is also entering peak flu season. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, up to 650,000 people worldwide could die from complications of the flu . . .

 . . . It's very early in the flu season but it's shaping up to be a nasty one. Texas is one of 23 states already seeing high flu activity, more than double the number from the week before.

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CLICK HERE - Texas Department of State Health Services - 2017 - 2018 Texas Influenza Surveillance Activity Report

CLICK HERE - CDC - FluView - Weekly U.S. Influenza Surveillance Report

CLICK HERE - TEXASFLU.org

 

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California Fires - Information Resources

AN EXPANDING LIST OF NEWS AND INFORMATION RESOURCES RELATED TO THE FIRES IN CALIFORNIA . . .

CLICK HERE - Cal Fire - Current Fire Information

CLICK HERE - U.S. Department of Health and Human Services - DIMRC - Fires and Wildfires

 

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Southern California Fires Live Updates: Threats in Ventura and San Diego Counties

Just one of the fires raging in Southern California has already burned an area larger than Detroit, fueled by winds nearing hurricane strength. Here’s a look at the numbers behind the state’s worst fire season ever. By BEN LAFFIN on Publish Date December 7, 2017. Photo by Hilary Swift for The New York Times. Watch in Times Video

nytimes.com - By JENNIFER MEDINA, MIRIAM JORDAN and RICHARD PÉREZ-PEÑA - December 7, 2017

LOS ANGELES — Firefighters battled to hold back flames that on Thursday threatened tens of thousands of homes in Southern California and forced new evacuations, as officials implored residents to remain vigilant in the face of a rash of wildfires across greater Los Angeles that will quite likely not abate for days.

More than 200,000 people in Los Angeles and Ventura Counties have been told to leave their homes . . .

. . . Across seven counties, millions of cellphones shook and squawked with a warning of “extreme fire danger,” in California’s largest-ever use of a disaster alert system.

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Puerto Rico Energy Commission Opens Docket on Microgrids and Distributed Generation

Puerto Rico Gov. Ricardo Rosselló Nevares testifying on Capitol Hill this week.

microgridknowledge.com - by Elisa Wood - November 17, 2017

Puerto Rico’s energy commission has opened a docket to investigate ways to encourage microgrids and distributed generation to build an energy system with more fortitude against hurricanes.

Island officials described the docket this week in testimony before the U.S. Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources. Half of the island’s population remains without power two months after Hurricane Maria’s strike.

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The U.S. Solar Industry's New Growth Region: Trump Country

       

The Apple One 4.9 MW solar project, built by Cypress Creek Renewables, is pictured in Newton, North Carolina, United States in this undated handout photo obtained by Reuters March 28, 2017. Cypress Creek Renewables/Handout via REUTERS

reuters.com - by Nichola Groom - October 12, 2017

President Donald Trump’s administration has vowed to revive the coal industry, challenged climate-change science and blasted renewable energy as expensive and dependent on government subsidies.

And yet the solar power industry is booming across Trump country, fueled by falling development costs and those same subsidies, which many Republicans in Congress continue to support.

Data provided to Reuters by GTM Research, a clean energy market information firm, shows that eight of the 10 fastest-growing U.S. solar markets between the second quarters of 2016 and 2017 were Western, Midwestern or Southern states that voted for Trump, with Alabama and Mississippi topping the list. And solar firms are ramping up investments in these regions, signaling their faith that key renewable energy incentives will remain in place for years to come.

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Wildfires Sweep Across Northern California; 15 Are Dead

Map of active north California wildfires as of Monday October 9th 2017. By The New York Times | Sources: NASA MODIS, Santa Rosa Fire Department.

Image: Map of active north California wildfires as of Monday October 9th 2017. By The New York Times | Sources: NASA MODIS, Santa Rosa Fire Department.

nytimes.com - Thomas Fuller, Jonah Engel Bromwich, Julie Turkewitz - October 10th 2017

Wine country was shrouded in a thick layer of smoky haze here on Tuesday as firefighters continued to battle wildfires that have left at least 15 people dead and have damaged or destroyed more than 1,500 structures, including wineries, homes and resorts.

State fire officials estimated that 17 separate fires, the first group of which began Sunday night, had burned about 115,000 acres over eight counties. More than 100 people had been taken to hospitals by Tuesday morning, and officials said that the tallies of the dead and injured were likely to rise.

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Wildfires Hit Greenland After Record Temperatures

           

This satellite photograph depicts the wildfire raging in Greenland, as seen from space last week. - NASA Earth Observatory

phys.org - August 14, 2017

Police in Greenland warned people to stay away from western areas of the island as wildfires scorched swathes of scrubland . . . 

 . . . Denmark's meteorological service BMI said the island registered its hottest-ever temperature of 24.8 degrees (77 Fahrenheit) on August 10.

Last year was Greenland's hottest on record.

The Danish territory has lost about 4,000 gigatons of ice since 1995, British researchers said in June, making ice melt on the huge island the biggest single contributor to rising sea levels.

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PHOTOS: A 'Massive' Wildfire Is Now Blazing In Greenland
http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2017/08/08/542305822/photos-a-massive-wildfire-is-now-blazing-in-greenland

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Is Our Government Looking the Other Way on Contaminated Ground Water and Aquifers?

How Much Drinking Water Has California Lost to Oil Industry Waste? No One Knows

"California survived its historic drought, in large part by using groundwater. It was a lifeline in the Central Valley, where it was the only source of water for many farmers.

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Utilities companies won't let you sell your own solar power. Why not?

The electric utility sector is broken – but the transformation we need will be virtually impossible so long as a handful of wealthy elites are calling the shots

           

Utilities companies have their sights on ending net-metering: your ability to sell excess power at market rates. Photograph: Rex

CLICK HERE - REPORT - Energy and Policy Institute - Utilities Knew: Documenting Electric Utilities’ Early Knowledge and Ongoing Deception on Climate Change From 1968-2017

theguardian.com - by Kate Aronoff - August 1, 2017

A new report from the US-based Energy and Policy Institute last week found that investor-owned utilities have known about climate change for nearly 50 years – and done everything in their power to stop governments from doing anything about it.

From their commitment to toxic fuels to their corrosive influence on our democracy to their attempts to price-gouge ratepayers, it’s long past time to bring the reign of privately-owned electric utilities to an end.

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Britain to Ban Sale of All Diesel and Petrol Cars and Vans from 2040

Plans follow French commitment to take polluting vehicles off the road owing to effect of poor air quality on people’s health

           

Ministers believe poor air quality poses largest environmental risk to public health in UK. Photograph: Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images

theguardian.com - Anushka Asthana and Matthew Taylor - July 25, 2017

Britain is to ban all new petrol and diesel cars and vans from 2040 amid fears that rising levels of nitrogen oxide pose a major risk to public health.

The commitment, which follows a similar pledge in France, is part of the government’s much-anticipated clean air plan, which has been at the heart of a protracted high court legal battle. 

The government warned that the move, which will also take in hybrid vehicles, was needed because of the unnecessary and avoidable impact that poor air quality was having on people’s health.

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ALSO SEE RELATED ARTICLE HERE - Electric cars win? Britain to ban new petrol and diesel cars from 2040

 

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Why are Californian Solar Firms Paying to Give Away Power?

           

Getty Images

bbc.com - June 29, 2017

California companies are generating so much solar power that firms in other states are getting paid to take it.

The state has been forced into the arrangement to "avoid overloading its own power lines", according to the Los Angeles Times.

The situation doesn't necessarily mean we are "throwing money away", says economist Severin Borenstein, a professor at UC Berkeley's Haas School of Business.

"But it probably is an indication that there are some serious problems in the way we're running the grid and the way we're making investment decisions."

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Higher Seas to Flood Dozens of US Cities, Study Says; Is Yours One of Them?

CLICK HERE - STUDY - Union of Concerned Scientists - When Rising Seas Hit Home: Hard Choices Ahead for Hundreds of US Coastal Communities (2017)

cnn.com - by Jennifer Gray - July 12, 2017

For the past several years, scientists have been trying to get people to wake up to the dangers that lie ahead in rising seas due to climate change. A comprehensive list now names hundreds of US cities, large and small, that may not make it through the next 20, 50 or 80 years due to sea level rise . . .

 . . . If you live along the coast, your city could be one of them -- meaning you could be part of the last generation to call it home.

"This research hones in on exactly how sea level rise is hitting us first. The number of people experiencing chronic floods will grow much more quickly than sea level itself," Benjamin Strauss, Vice President for Sea Level and Climate Impacts at Climate Central said in reaction to this study.

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When Will Electric Cars Go Mainstream? It May Be Sooner Than You Think

           

A Volkswagen e-Golf electric car being charged in Dresden, Germany, in March. Volkswagen and Tesla each have plans to produce more than 1 million electric vehicles per year by 2025. Credit Fabrizio Bensch/Reuters

CLICK HERE - Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) - Electric Vehicle Outlook 2017

nytimes.com - by Brad Plumer - July 8, 2017

As the world’s automakers place larger bets on electric vehicle technology, many industry analysts are debating a key question: How quickly can plug-in cars become mainstream?

The conventional view holds that electric cars will remain a niche product for many years, plagued by high sticker prices and heavily dependent on government subsidies.

But a growing number of analysts now argue that this pessimism is becoming outdated. A new report from Bloomberg New Energy Finance, a research group, suggests that the price of plug-in cars is falling much faster than expected, spurred by cheaper batteries and aggressive policies promoting zero-emission vehicles in China and Europe.

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