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Climate
Aerial view of Florence, Nichols, Conway and Waccamaw, South Carolina, impacted by floodwaters on Sept. 21. South Carolina Air National Guard

2018: A Year of Deadly Climate Disasters and an 'Ear Splitting Wake-Up Call'

By Sharon Kelly

2018 is set to rank as the fourth warmest year on record—and the fourth year in a row reflecting a full degree Celsius (1.8° Fahrenheit) temperature rise from the late 1800s, climate scientists say.

This was the year that introduced us to fire tornadoes, bomb cyclones and in Death Valley, a five-day streak of 125°F temperatures, part of the hottest month ever documented at a U.S. weather station.

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Climate
A flare from the Shell Refinery in Norco, Louisiana shines along with Christmas lights on residents homes on Dec. 19, 2013. Julie Dermansky / Corbis via Getty Images

Fossil Fuels and Climate Denial Still Reign in Louisiana Despite Scientists’ Dire Warnings

By Julie Dermansky

Louisiana is ground zero for the devastating impacts of climate change. Even though the state is already feeling the costly impacts to life and property due to extreme weather and an eroding coastline linked to a warming planet, its government continues to ignore the primary cause—human use of fossil fuels.

The impacts to the region, such as worsening floods, heat waves and sea level rise, will only be intensified as the globe continues warming, warn federal scientists in the latest National Climate Assessment report.

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Fracking
32 fracking companies in the U.S. are running a deficit of nearly $1 billion. grandriver / iStock / Getty Images Plus

Fracking in 2018: Another Year of Pretending to Make Money

By Justin Mikulka

2018 was the year the oil and gas industry promised that its darling, the shale fracking revolution, would stop focusing on endless production and instead turn a profit for its investors. But as the year winds to a close, it's clear that hasn't happened.

Instead, the fracking industry has helped set new records for U.S. oil production while continuing to lose huge amounts of money—and that was before the recent crash in oil prices.

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Science
Partial solar eclipse. ndersbknudsen, CC BY 2.0

3 Key Dangers of Solar Geoengineering and Why Some Critics Urge a Global Ban

By Justin Mikulka

A Harvard research team recently announced plans to perform early tests to shoot sunlight-reflecting particles into the high atmosphere to slow or reverse global warming.

These research efforts, which could take shape as soon as the first half of 2019, fall under the banner of a geoengineering technology known as solar radiation management, which is sometimes called "sun dimming."

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Energy
Native American leaders and environmental groups called on New York City to divest from banks funding the Dakota Access Pipeline on Feb. 23, 2017. Erik McGregor / Pacific Press / LightRocket via Getty Images

Energy Transfer Partners and Banks Lost Billions by Ignoring Early Dakota Access Pipeline Concerns

By Sharon Kelly

Roughly four years ago, Energy Transfer Partners (ETP) filed a federal application to build a 1,172 mile oil pipeline from North Dakota's Bakken shale across the U.S. to Illinois at a projected cost of $3.8 billion.

Before that application was filed, on Sept. 30, 2014, the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe met with ETP to express concerns about the Dakota Access pipeline (DAPL) and fears of water contamination. Though the company, now known as Energy Transfer, had re-routed a river crossing to protect the state capital of Bismarck against oil spills, it apparently turned a deaf ear to the Tribe's objections.

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Cezary P / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 4.0

Tense Atmosphere: Poland Issues Terrorism Alert for Katowice Ahead of COP24

By Chloe Farand

The Polish government has implemented a terrorism alert in the province where the annual UN climate talks are about to start.

Climate campaigners are warning of a tense atmosphere in and around the city of Katowice in southern Poland, where the global climate negotiations, known as COP24, are due to kick off on Monday.

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Renewable Energy
Max Pixel

Koch Industries Lobbies Against Electric Vehicle Tax Credit

By Dana Drugmand

Koch Industries is calling for the elimination of tax credits for electric vehicles (EVs), all while claiming that it does not oppose plug-in cars and inviting the elimination of oil and gas subsidies that the petroleum conglomerate and its industry peers receive.

Outgoing Nevada Republican Senator Dean Heller introduced a bill in September that would lift the sales cap on electric vehicles eligible for a federal tax credit, and replace the cap with a deadline that would dictate when the credit would start being phased out.

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Smoke billows from one of many petrochemical plants in Louisiana's "Cancer Alley" on Oct. 12, 2013. Giles Clarke / Getty Images

Why Plans to Turn America’s Rust Belt Into a New Plastics Belt Are Bad News for the Climate

By Sharon Kelly

The petrochemical industry anticipates spending a total of over $200 billion on factories, pipelines, and other infrastructure in the U.S. that will rely on shale gas, the American Chemistry Council announced in September. Construction is already underway at many sites.

This building spree would dramatically expand the Gulf Coast's petrochemical corridor (known locally as "Cancer Alley")—and establish a new plastics and petrochemical belt across states like Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia.

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Politics
Hurricane Michael slammed into the Florida Panhandle on October 10, as a category 4 storm causing massive damage and claiming about 30 lives. Scott Olson / Getty Images

Climate Deniers on the Ballot in 2018

By Justin Mikulka

As the midterm elections approach, DeSmog is taking this opportunity to highlight some of the top climate science deniers currently running for office in the U.S.

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