climate-change


Photo: Bob Dass/Flickr

Winds and Wildfires in California: 4 Factors to Watch that Increase Danger

, senior climate scientist

Santa Ana influenced fires, which occur between October and April, are different from the warm and dry season fires, that typically occur between June and September. Scientists have found the main reasons why Santa Ana influenced fires contribute the vast majority of cumulative economic losses in California compared to other wildfires that typically occur in the summer.  From 1990-2009, Santa Ana influenced fires spread three times faster, occurred closer to urban areas, and burned into areas with greater housing values. Over the same years, other fires often occurred in higher elevation forests, were more sensitive to how old the vegetation was, lasted for extended periods, and accounted for 70% of total suppression costs.  In other words, other fires burned in remote forests, often with plenty of mature vegetation or ‘fuel’ for long-lasting wildfires. Whereas Santa Ana influenced fires scorched with greater speed through areas that were typically closer to more people. Read more >

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7 Things People Got Wrong with our Recent ‘Nuclear Power Dilemma’ Report

, director of energy research, Clean Energy

On November 8, UCS released The Nuclear Power Dilemma: Declining Profits, Plant Closures, and the Threat of Rising Carbon Emissions, which found that more than one-third of existing nuclear plants, representing 22 percent of total US nuclear capacity, is uneconomic or slated to close over the next decade. Unfortunately, some of the media coverage and statements by the nuclear industry and other groups have mischaracterized our report and our past work. Here are seven points to correct the record. Read more >

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Forget the Trump Bailout—Here’s a Real Solution for Nuclear and the Climate

, director of gov't affairs, Climate & Energy

The Trump Administration’s proposal is a bad idea predicated on a made-up problem. Here’s a better approach. Read more >

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Photo: Montgomery County Planning Commission

What the New UCS Report on Nuclear Plants Means for Illinois

, lead Midwest energy analyst

Today UCS released a new report entitled The Nuclear Power Dilemma that examines the economic viability and performance of most of the 60 nuclear power plants operating in the United States as of July 2018. The report also analyzes what electric generating resources are likely to replace these nuclear plants if some of them were to abruptly retire from service. So what did the report find and what does it mean for a state with so much nuclear power like Illinois? Read more >

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Washington’s I-1631: A Chance to Choose Hope, Not Fear

, director, California & Western States

Few issues have generated as much excitement for climate action as the Washington State carbon pricing initiative, I-1631. This initiative, developed after a painstaking and highly inclusive planning process that has garnered enthusiastic support from a large, diverse coalition of constituencies, would create a groundbreaking carbon fee on polluters that would be reinvested in Washington’s communities, businesses, and clean energy industries. While opponents to I-1631, mostly out-of-state oil companies, claim that Washington can’t afford to price and reduce carbon emissions, the fact is that individuals, businesses, and taxpayers are already footing a very large bill for the damage done by global warming pollution and the price tag will continue to grow unless emissions can be dramatically reduced. Read more >

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