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Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life
Wildfires within the Arctic Circle in Alaska on June 4, 2020. Contains modified Copernicus Sentinel data processed by Pierre Markuse. CC BY 2.0

By Jeff Masters, Ph.D.

Earth had its second-warmest year on record in 2020, just 0.02 degrees Celsius (0.04°F) behind the record set in 2016, and 0.98 degrees Celsius (1.76°F) above the 20th-century average, NOAA reported January 14.

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EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

The Lake Mead area of the Colorado River basin on Aug. 19, 2019. Udo S / Flickr

By Jan Ellen Spiegel

Colorado is no stranger to drought. The current one is closing in on 20 years, and a rainy or snowy season here and there won't change the trajectory.

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Like many other plant-based foods and products, CBD oil is one dietary supplement where "organic" labels are very important to consumers. However, there are little to no regulations within the hemp industry when it comes to deeming a product as organic, which makes it increasingly difficult for shoppers to find the best CBD oil products available on the market.

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Online meetings have become the norm during the Covid-19 pandemic. fizkes / Getty Images

Taking business trips – or even just commuting to work – can produce a lot of carbon pollution. But for a long time, many people resisted the alternative of remote work and virtual meetings.

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There are more than 90,000 dams in the United States, most of which were built more than 50 years ago. AlbertPego / Getty Images

There are more than 90,000 dams in the United States. Many of those dams are at risk of failure.

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A February game of hockey at Dufferin Grove Park Ice Rink in Toronto, Ontario drew attention to global warming as children splashed across the wet ice and puddles. Peter Power / Toronto Star via Getty Images


People who love winter sports like skiing and snowboarding know there's something special about being out in the cold.

"We find things in deep winter or at high altitude elevations that we don't find anywhere else, that speak very directly to our connection to nature and to the human soul, really," says Mario Molina, executive director of the nonprofit Protect Our Winters.

He says people who enjoy winter sports want to preserve this experience for future generations.

"They want to pass those sports on to their kids and their grandkids," Molina says.

But global warming is causing warmer winters and more precipitation to fall as rain instead of snow. That puts winter sports at risk.

So the Protect Our Winters campaign mobilizes outdoor enthusiasts to take action.

"We turn passionate outdoor enthusiasts into effective climate advocates," Molina says.

For example, one campaign encourages athletes to speak out against fossil fuel extraction on public lands. Another asks winter sports lovers to contact their elected officials in support of clean energy.

So Protect Our Winters encourages everyone from casual skiers to big-mountain snowboarders to get involved, join together, and demand climate action.

Reporting credit: Stephanie Manuzak / ChavoBart Digital Media.

Reposted with permission from Yale Climate Connections.

Hurricane Iota is the latest category 5 storm ever recorded in the Atlantic, with the aftermath seen here in Cortes, Honduras on November 19, 2020. Orlando SIERRA / AFP / Getty Images

By Jeff Masters, PhD and Dana Nuccitelli

Calendar year 2020 was an extreme and abnormal year, in so many ways. The global coronavirus pandemic altered people's lives around the world, as did extreme weather and climate events. Let's review the year's top 10 such events.

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By Michael Svoboda, Ph.D.

Looking for climate-oriented gifts that can be purchased, delivered, and enjoyed under COVID-safe, socially-distanced conditions? Look no further.

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U.S. returns create about 15 million metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions. manonallard / Getty Images

Many people shop online for everything from clothes to appliances. If they do not like the product, they simply return it. But there's an environmental cost to returns.

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JasonOndreicka / iStock / Getty Images

Twenty-five years ago, a food called Tofurky made its debut on grocery store shelves. Since then, the tofu-based roast has become a beloved part of many vegetarians' holiday feasts.

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Climate change can evoke intense feelings, but a conversational approach can help. Reed Kaestner / Getty Images

Anger, anxiety, overwhelm … climate change can evoke intense feelings.


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A well-insulated, weather-tight house holds heat longer. DonNichols / Getty Images

Living in an energy-efficient home does not just save money on utility bills. A well-insulated, weather-tight house holds heat longer than one that's poorly insulated and drafty.

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Florida National Guard / Flickr / CC BY 2.0

From broken buildings to uprooted trees, extreme weather can leave behind a lot of visible damage. But there is invisible damage, too. Many survivors face mental health struggles after a storm.

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