The Best Vitamins to Fight Inflammation

The Best Vitamins to Fight Inflammation

vitamin softgels in hand
vitamin softgels in hand. Evgeniia Siiankovskaia / Getty Images


Inflammation is the body’s natural response to infection, injury, and toxins, and while it can often be painful, it plays a vital role in your body’s healing process by activating the immune system to begin repairing damaged cells. When left unchecked, though, chronic inflammation can injure your tissues, joints, and blood vessels. “Acute inflammation is how the body fights infections and is not something that should be of concern,” explains registered dietitian Mia Syn. “But when chronic inflammation occurs, the immune system fights indefinitely.”

Those who suffer from the latter may experience negative effects such as widespread pain, joint swelling, and skin irritation. The good news? Taking certain vitamins every day can actively help reduce acute and chronic inflammation, as well as improve your overall health. To better understand these supplements and their benefits, we spoke to leading nutritionists. Ahead, their insights and vitamin recommendations to fight inflammation daily.

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Related: Can Exercise Really Reduce Inflammation?

Fish Oils

Rich in fatty acids, fish oils are widely known for their heart health benefits, but you may not know is that they also play a key role in fighting inflammation and easing joint pain. “Fish oil contains eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), which are omega-3 fatty acids that may help reduce the production of cytokines, a group of proteins that trigger inflammation throughout the body,” says Syn.

When it comes to omega-3 supplements, Amy Gorin, a plant-based registered dietitian and the owner of Plant-Based Eats, adds that it’s important to choose trusted and responsibly-sourced products. “I’m a fan of NOW Ultra Omega-3, which provides 500 milligrams of EPA and 250 milligrams of DHA for optimal cardiovascular support and brain health. I trust this product because it’s manufactured under strict quality standards, meaning it’s tested to be void of potentially harmful levels of contaminants including mercury, other heavy metals, PCBs, and dioxins,” she explains. If you’re looking for a plant-based source of EPA and DHA, opt for an algae-based supplement like Zenwise’s vegan fish-oil alternative, she notes.

Shop Now: NOW Foods Ultra Omega-3, $24.99,; Zenwise Vegan Omega-3 Supplement, $27.97,

NOW Foods Ultra Omega-3 and Zenwise Vegan Omega-3 Supplement
NOW Foods Ultra Omega-3 and Zenwise Vegan Omega-3 Supplement

Curcumin is the main active ingredient in the spice turmeric and is often used in Ayurvedic medicine. This natural compound is known for its powerful anti-inflammatory effects and antioxidant properties and has been found to combat chronic inflammation, ease swelling in joints, and even reduce blood sugars in type 2 diabetes. However, since curcumin is poorly absorbed into the bloodstream, it’s best to choose a supplement that contains piperine—a substance in black pepper that increases the absorption of curcumin.

Shop Now: MegaFood Turmeric Strength for Whole Body, $24.16,

MegaFood Turmeric Strength for Whole Body
MegaFood Turmeric Strength for Whole Body
Vitamin A

“Vitamin A is involved with immune function and cellular communication and is an antioxidant that can reverse cellular damage from oxidative stress,” explains registered dietitian Nijya Saffo. Studies have shown that vitamin A is not only necessary for protecting your immune system, but it can also help with proper bone growth. Those deficient in vitamin A may be more susceptible to bone fractures and may take longer to recover from inflammation and infections.

Shop Now: NOW Supplements Vitamin A, $12.29,

NOW Supplements Vitamin A
NOW Supplements Vitamin A
Vitamin C

Whenever you feel a cold coming on, chances are you turn to vitamin C for its immune-boosting properties, but this powerhouse ingredient should have a place in your routine far beyond the context of flu season. The powerful antioxidant works to neutralize free radicals that cause cell damage and inflammation, making it an essential vitamin for your overall health. Plus, maintaining a healthy immune system is paramount to keeping inflammation at bay. To get your daily dose of vitamin C, Saffo recommends Nature Made’s Vitamin C caplets.

Shop Now: Nature Made Vitamin C 500 mg Caplets with Rose Hips, $7.89,

Nature Made Vitamin C 500 mg Caplets with Rose Hips
Nature Made Vitamin C 500 mg Caplets with Rose Hips
Vitamin D

Vitamin D helps regulate the production of inflammatory proteins in the body and is derived from fortified foods and sun exposure. Research shows that low levels of vitamin D have been linked to inflammatory diseases like irritable bowel syndrome and immune-related disorders like rheumatoid arthritis. Introducing vitamin D into your diet can help alleviate inflammation as well as maintain strong and healthy bones.

Shop Now: Nature Made D3, $10.23,

Nature Made D3
Nature Made D3
Vitamin E

Vitamin E is another potent, antioxidant-rich vitamin. Much like vitamin A, vitamin E blocks inflammatory proteins and prevents the immune system from overreacting and causing an inflammatory response. Saffo recommends this Vitamin E supplement from Garden of Life that comes with the added benefits of probiotics and vitamins A, D, and K.

Shop Now: Garden of Life Vitamin E Supplement, $20.29,

Garden of Life Vitamin E Supplement
Garden of Life Vitamin E Supplement

Ginger has long been used in alternative and modern medicine alike to treat everything from nausea to arthritis. Its main active compound is Gingerol—a compound rich in antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Some research shows that when ingested, this spicy root can reduce joint pain and stiffness in degenerative joint diseases, such as osteoarthritis. You can introduce ginger into your diet by way of teas and smoothies or opt for easy-to-take supplements, like this one from Nature’s Bounty.

Shop Now: Nature’s Bounty Ginger Root Pills, $8.99,

Nature's Bounty Ginger Root Pills
Nature’s Bounty Ginger Root Pills

Capsaicin is the compound found in chili peppers; it gives them their spicy kick. Not only is capsaicin a popular ingredient in many spicy dishes, but it’s also known for its pain-relieving properties. Science reflects that: Research shows that capsaicin works mainly by reducing substance P—a pain transmitter in your nerves—which can greatly reduce discomfort and tenderness in joints. Because of its analgesic effects, capsaicin is often recommended for those who suffer from rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, and fibromyalgia.

Shop Now: Nature’s Way Cayenne Pepper, $8.56,

Nature's Way Cayenne Pepper
Nature’s Way Cayenne Pepper

If you’re a red wine lover, then chances are you’ve heard of resveratrol. This plant-based antioxidant is found in red wine, grapes, and peanuts and has shown to reduce inflammation and ease joint pain; it has also been linked to reducing the severity of certain inflammatory bowel diseases.

Shop Now: Reserveage Resveratrol 500 mg, $34.39,

Reserveage Resveratrol 500 mg
Reserveage Resveratrol 500 mg

Probiotics can help promote a healthy balance of “good bacteria” in the gut and can aid in everything from digestive health to immune function. Certain probiotics from the Bifidobacterium and Lactobacillus strains may help improve the symptoms of certain inflammatory bowel diseases such as ulcerative colitis and IBS. This probiotic from Seed contains 24 different strains to support full-body health.

Shop Now: Seed DS-01™ Daily Synbiotic, $49.99,

Seed DS-01 Daily Synbiotic
Seed DS-01 Daily Synbiotic

Countries in southeast Europe brace for heat wave

Countries in southeast Europe brace for heat wave

People walk by city fountains at sunset, at the end of a very warm day, in Bucharest, Romania, Wednesday, July 14, 2021. The Romanian weather authority has issued a heatwave warning for the next two days in the Romanian capital with temperatures expected to go above 35 degrees centigrade (95 Fahrenheit) in the shade. (AP Photo/Andreea Alexandru)


SKOPJE, North Macedonia (AP) — Authorities in several southeast European countries have issued weather warnings before a heat wave in the region expected Thursday that is set to push temperatures to as high as 43 C (109.4 F) in inland areas.

Public health officials in North Macedonia on Wednesday said all six of the country’s administrative regions would be affected by the emergency and urged a pause in construction work and called for municipal-level initiatives to help the elderly and the homeless.

High temperatures are expected through the weekend in North Macedonia and neighboring Albania, Bulgaria, and Greece, as well as parts of Romania and Serbia.

In Albania’s central Dimal region, temperatures reached 42 C (107.6 F) Wednesday.

In the Bulgarian capital, Sofia, municipal workers handed out free bottles of water at several locations in the city. Trucks were sent to water drying out sections of public parks and gardens.

Municipal authorities in Athens this week began providing air-conditioned spaces to the public, and advised residents to remain indoors at midday and the early afternoon.

The Greek capital has also appointed a chief heat officer, becoming the first European capital to do so.

Athens is part of a European network of cities created to combat the effects of high temperatures, alongside Paris, Rotterdam, Glasgow, and Seville.

“We’ve been talking about global warming for decades, but we haven’t talked much about heat,” the new Athens officer, Eleni Myrivili, said following her appointment last week.

“I look forward to raising awareness among the citizens of Athens about the grave dangers of extreme heat and helping decision-makers take action to cool the city and protect people and their communities.”

Wildfires raged for a second day in southern Greece, forcing evacuations in a mountainous area outside the western port city of Patras. Smoke from the fire was visible in the center of the city. Forest fires were also reported in Bulgaria and Albania.

Derek Gatopoulos reported from Athens, Greece. Llazar Semini in Tirana, Albania contributed to this report.

Why Republicans Are So Determined to Distort the Truth About the Capitol Attack

Why Republicans Are So Determined to Distort the Truth About the Capitol Attack

Members of law enforcement leave following testimony during the Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack on the US Capitol adjourned their first hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, on July 27, 2021. – The committee heard testimony from members of the US Capitol Police and the Metropolitan Police Department who tried to protect the Capitol against insurrectionists on January 6, 2021. Credit – Bill O’Leary-AFP


On Monday a small band of U.S. Capitol Police officers delivered vivid, emotional testimony about a previously unthinkable event—the day a partisan mob stormed the Capitol to try to overturn an American election. Many Americans had already seen the sounds and images of that shocking day, but there was something about their description that brought the event more vividly to life.

Yet it’s unlikely to change hearts and minds, at least not Republican hearts and minds. In GOP circles, two things are true at once. First, large majorities of Republican voters disapprove of the January 6 rioters. At the same time, large majorities still approve of Donald Trump, and Liz Cheney—the Republican most prominently intent on investigating and exposing what happened—is less popular with Republicans than renowned conspiracy theorist Marjorie Taylor Greene.

In fact, Cheney might now be the least popular Republican in the entire Republican Party, in spite of her consistently conservative voting record and her support for Donald Trump’s re-election in 2020. The reason is simple. She has violated the prime directive of negative partisanship. Even if she’s right to be upset by the riots, she’s attacking her own team. It’s the responsibility of GOP politicians to always, always train their fire on the left.

Negative partisanship is a simple concept with profound implications. At its most basic, it means that “the parties hang together mainly out of sheer hatred of the other team, rather than a shared sense of purpose.” When negative partisanship dominates, a political coalition is united far more by animosity than policy. The policy priorities are malleable and flexible, so long as the politician rhetorically punches the right people.

The problem is severe and getting worse. Available data indicates that partisan perceptions of the opposing party have been plunging for more than 30 years, to the point where the overwhelming majority of Republicans and Democrats have profoundly negative perceptions of their political opponents.

Liz Cheney’s changing polling is Exhibit A of the phenomenon. She was and is one of the House’s most ideologically conservative members, yet she’s now three times more popular with Democrats than Republicans. Fight Republicans, and you’ll get Democratic fans, even if your underlying ideology remains profoundly conservative.

Republican acceptance of conspiracy theorists like Marjorie Taylor Greene is Exhibit B. The same poll that showed Cheney significantly underwater with Republican voters showed Green with a slight positive rating. She’s endorsed truly bizarre and baseless conspiracy theories, including allegations that Hillary Clinton ritually killed a child. But she fights the left, and the left despises her, and for millions of Republicans that is more than enough to earn their regard.

Given our culture of negative partisanship, a true bipartisan effort to explore the events, causes, and consequences of January 6th never had a chance. The riots at the Capitol weren’t an external attack from a shared enemy (like the attacks on 9/11). They were a purely partisan attack launched by fanatical Trump supporters. That means a close examination of January 6th was always going to be a close examination of the failures and misdeeds of one partisan side.

There is even a link between the malady of negative partisanship and America’s ongoing struggle with vaccine hesitancy. As the vaccination gap between blue counties and red counties continues to grow, Republicans who advocate for increased vaccine uptake have to strike a delicate balance. They can exhort vaccinations, but critiquing those who amplify doubts about the vaccine–especially, say, a powerful personality like Tucker Carlson–carries its own perils.

Nobody thinks that negative partisanship is confined to the right side of the aisle. All the polling data indicates that animosity is a bipartisan concern. Democrats dislike Republicans just as Republicans dislike Democrats. But at the moment, two of the greatest challenges to the American body politic–the belief that the 2020 election was “stolen” and the vaccine hesitancy that is infecting Americans by the hundreds of thousands and killing them by the thousands–come from the right, and thus it is imperative that the right clean its own house.

When animosity is the guiding principle, however, there is no tolerance for any degree of introspection that could lead to potential political weakness. Cheney knows understands this intimately. During the hearing she asked the key question, “Do we hate our political adversaries more than we love our country and revere our Constitution?”

Republicans might be embarrassed about January 6th. They may even be frustrated or angry that the riot occurred. But those feelings pale in comparison to their desire to defeat Democrats, and they’re keenly aware that every second spent relitigating January 6th is a second spent highlighting the worst of their party and their movement. Of course they want to move on, quickly. Of course they’re angry at any Republican who wants to investigate.

To say that Republican frustration is understandable is not to argue that it’s excusable. January 6th was a historic atrocity. It represented a violent effort to overturn an election. The health of the American experiment is not determined by the electoral success of the Republican Party. It’s ultimately determined by its commitment to its constitutional ideals, and in January the Constitution came under frontal attack.

So the investigation must continue, and conservatives like Cheney and her House Colleague Adam Kinziger who seek to know the full truth of January 6th should maintain their lonely stands. After all, the truth is important even if the truth doesn’t move the polls. The present centrality of negative partisanship doesn’t necessarily imply its permanence, but for now Republican hearts are hard to change.

Shrinking Global Populations Poses An Existential Threat To Oil

Shrinking Global Populations Poses An Existential Threat To Oil


About a week ago, Saudi Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman made waves in the oil community after telling Bloomberg News that Saudi Arabia “…is going to be the last man standing, and every molecule of hydrocarbon will come out.”

The comments by bin Salman—heralded as the most powerful man in the global oil and gas industry—came shortly after the latest OPEC+ agreement and mirrored those by Saudi Aramco CEO Amin Nasser, who expressed similar sentiments back in January 2019.

And this might not be idle bluster: In late 2019, Neil Atkinson, head of the oil industry and markets division at the International Energy Agency, told CNBC that, “There’s going to be rising demand for at least the next decade for oil products, possibly longer, and this is cementing [Saudi Arabia’s] role as the cornerstone player in global markets, the most reliable and biggest supplier in markets.”

Atkinson also highlighted another rarely discussed oil demand headwind: Shrinking populations in key demand locations. According to Atkinson, population growth remains the key driving force for oil demand, which he estimated could peak in the 2030’s.

‘Jaw-Dropping’ Population Declines

Source: BBC

Over the past few years, most of the energy community’s attention has been focused on seemingly more existential crises such as climate change. Now, the focus is on the Covid-19 pandemic. But seldom is population decline mentioned as a major headwind for the long-term oil demand outlook.

Maybe that’s the case because, unlike the other two risk factors, population decline really is a success story being driven by more women in education and work, as well as greater access to contraception, leading to women choosing to have fewer children. Another reason is because population decline is a much slower process whose full effects could take decades to be felt.

But make no mistake about it: Experts are now warning that the world’s population is declining at faster than anticipated rates, which could end up having a dramatic effect on major sectors of the global economy, including energy.

In early July, Researchers at the University of Washington’s Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation warned that declining and aging populations are no longer a problem for developed economies but, rather, most of the world is currently transitioning into natural population decline.

In 1950, women were having an average of 4.7 children in their lifetime; the fertility rate nearly halved to 2.4 in 2017 and is projected to fall below 1.7 by 2100.

That’s well below the 2.1 children per woman that’s considered the replacement level for developed nations, meaning the global population will be experiencing massive contraction by the turn of the century.

Indeed, the researchers have projected that the global population will peak at 9.7 billion around 2064 before falling down to 8.8 billion by 2100.

Population Declines by Major Oil Consumers

What makes the long-term situation murky for the oil and gas bulls is the large population declines expected in major oil and gas consumers.

By 2100, China and Japan could see their populations drop by roughly 50%. China is the world’s second-largest oil consumer in the world, with a daily consumption estimated at 12.8 million barrels per day, while Japan is the fourth largest with a daily consumption of 4.0 million barrels per day.

India, the third-largest oil-consuming nation, will fare a bit better but will still lose a quarter of its population by 2100. Russia, the 5th largest, is projected to see its population drop between 15-50%.

The U.S. population is projected to expand from the current 331 million in 2020 to 404 million in 2060, when it’s expected to plateau.

The Eurozone—a region that consumes as much oil as the United States—is one of the few bright spots. Europe is projected to continue growing its population from 507 million in 2020 to 708 million in 20175 before falling to 689 million by 2100.

However, Europe also has also set some of the world’s most aggressive climate targets, with the European Union having announced a raft of climate change proposals aimed at pushing it towards its goal of becoming carbon neutral by 2050.

The problem of falling populations is likely to be aggravated by an aging crisis.

The world’s number of 80-year-olds is expected to rise from 141 million currently to 866 million by 2100, according to the BBC.

In the United States, the number of Americans aged 65 or older will jump nearly 75% by 2060 from 56.4 million to 98.2 million. This translates into a demand drop for gasoline of about 5% when looking at 2019 usage statistics and assuming an average of 20 miles per gallon, per driver. Miles driven per year drops dramatically from the 55-64 age bracket (11,972 miles per year) to 7,646 for the 65 and over age bracket.

Aging will also adversely affect the economy, with a 10% increase in the fraction of the population ages 60+ estimated to decrease the growth rate of GDP per capita by 5.5%.

The African Situation

Rapid population growth in Africa could take up some of that slack but will likely be far from adequate to stem the tide in the developed world.

Africa is an interesting case not only due to the fact that demographic forecasts of coming decades diverge in a way that could be crucial but also due to the fact that the continent has a huge population that consumes 4.3 million barrels of oil per day, or slightly less than India.

The UN expects Africa’s population to double from 1.3 billion in 2020 to 2.5 billion by 2050 and 4.3 billion people by 2100. The UN reckons that fertility rates in Africa—which have dropped to about 4.4 from 6.7 in 1980—will take another three decades to fall below three children per woman.

However, that underestimates the impact of a big jump in the number of girls who are now going to school across large parts of the continent. In the 1970s, little more than half of all children in sub-Saharan Africa were enrolled in primary school, a proportion that has since shot up to almost 100%.

Lessons garnered from other parts of the world that have recorded such dramatic increases in enrollment rates suggest that this factor cannot be underestimated in predicting the population growth curve. For instance, Iranian women went from having seven children each to fewer than two between the early 1980s and 2006 after a big rise in female education.

Further, although emerging economies have mostly been missing in the ongoing ESG boom, Africa is catching up with the IMF predicting a meaningful shift in African power consumption to renewables by 2050, with most power expected to come from solar and wind by 2100.

Overall, we can surmise that population trends across the globe pose a slow yet real and insidious threat to the long-term oil demand outlook even in lieu of increasingly hostile climate policies by the world’s governments.

Homes lose water as wells run dry in drought-ravaged basin

Associated Press

Homes lose water as wells run dry in drought-ravaged basin

Oregon residents report dried-up wells in an area struggling through a historic drought.

MALIN, Ore. (AP) — Judy and Jim Shanks know the exact date their home’s well went dry — June 24.

Since then, their life has been an endless cycle of imposing on relatives for showers and laundry, hauling water to feed a small herd of cattle and desperately waiting for a local well-drilling company to make it to their name on a months long wait list.

The couple’s well is among potentially hundreds that have dried up in recent weeks in an area near the Oregon-California border suffering through a historic drought, leaving homes with no running water just a few months after the federal government shut off irrigation to hundreds of the region’s farmers for the first time ever.

Officials have formal reports of 117 empty wells but suspect more than 300 have gone dry in the past few weeks as the consequences of the Klamath River basin’s water scarcity extend far beyond farmers’ fields.

Worried homeowners face waits of six months or more to get new, deeper wells dug because of the surging demand, with no guarantee that those wells, too, won’t ultimately go dry.

Some are getting by on the generosity of neighbors, or hauling free water from a nearby city. The state also is sending in a water truck and scrambling to ship more than 350 emergency storage tanks from as far as Oklahoma amid a nationwide shortage of the containers due to drought-induced demand across the U.S. West. The first tanks arrived Thursday.

Judy Shanks, a volunteer ambulance driver, and her husband are surviving on 5-gallon (19-liter) jugs she fills at her mother’s house, and have already sold several cows.

“Come December, if we don’t get some storms in here and we don’t see any changes, I’ll probably sell everything because we can’t hang on,” she said.

While much of the West is experiencing exceptional drought conditions, the toll on everyday life is particularly stark in this region filled with flat vistas of sprawling alfalfa and potato fields and normally teeming wetlands.

This summer’s already critical water shortages have been amplified by a mandate to preserve water levels for two species of endangered suckerfish in a key lake that’s also the primary source of irrigation water for 200,000 acres (80,900 hectares) of farmland.

“It’s kind of hard to look forward and see good things,” said Justin Grant, a farmer who lost irrigation water and whose home now also has a dry well. “I’m trying to wrap my head around how to get through the season.”

In the past, water from Upper Klamath Lake was released each spring from a dam controlled by the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation and flowed into a vast network of irrigation canals. That system feeds fields converted from marshy lakes to arable land by the government more than a century ago.

The amount of water allocated to farmers varies yearly based on lake levels, and already in recent years it had been reduced.

This year, however, the bureau said because of unusually low lake levels caused by severe drought it could not release any water at all without imperiling the suckerfish. Now, some farmers are drawing instead from deep wells that dot the region, depleting groundwater at the shallower depths tapped by homeowners.

“This is something that you don’t really think of having to deal with in a country like ours,” said Klamath County Commissioner Kelley Minty Morris. “It’s unimaginable to me even though it’s going on right in my community.”

Some water also leaks from the irrigation canals every growing season, superficially replenishing the groundwater. But those canals have run dry, said Brad Kirby, manager of the Tulelake Irrigation District, just south of the California border.

Experts say several factors — years of paltry rain and snow, record-setting heat and raging wildfires driven by climate change — are inexorably changing the region’s ecology.

Oregon’s Water Resources Department, which monitors groundwater levels, recorded the lowest inflow of water ever into the Upper Klamath Lake this spring, setting the stage for a disastrous summer.

“In some wells, we’re seeing a drop of 40 or 50 feet (12 to 15 meters) so far this season,” said Ivan Gall, field services administrator for the agency. “It is a lot.”

And there is no guarantee the groundwater will fully recharge when it rains and snows again, he said. In 2010, another year when farmers pumped a lot of groundwater because of drought, the aquifer dropped permanently between 4 and 5 feet (1.2 to 1.5 meters), he said.

“You can see how interconnected all of this is,” Gall said, calling it a “cascade effect” of competing demands.

Irrigators drawing on groundwater have irked some homeowners, but the overwhelming focus of anger in this conservative, Republican-leaning community has been the U.S. government and the Endangered Species Act.

Some acknowledge global warming’s role, but most say they are victims of bad government policy in what’s been framed as a battle between farmer and fish. Now, homeowners are in the mix.

“I don’t want to get political about this because I understand everybody’s desire — we’re all just trying to survive. But the environmental policies have killed us here,” said Shanks, the ambulance driver. “We have a drought, I’m not denying that. But we have an even worse man-made drought.”

The two species of suckerfish have been listed as federally endangered since 1988 and are of critical cultural importance to the Klamath Tribes, which have fought for decades to preserve them. The tribes’ studies show that if nothing changes, the fish will disappear from the lake within a generation.

“Archeological evidence has us here for 14,000 years. Our world view, our traditional world view, is everything was placed here for a purpose, including us, and those fish that were created for us were to provide for our subsistence,” said Klamath Tribes Chairman Don Gentry.

With fields and now wells drying up, and the fish struggling, everyone is wondering where to go from here.

Nathan Buckley was on a camping trip on Memorial Day weekend when his wife called him to say their sprinkler had stopped running and the kitchen faucet was dry.

A pump specialist told them they had an inch (2.5 centimeters) of water left in their 180-foot (55-meter) well. The only solution, he said, was to dig a deeper well — but well-drilling companies in the rural region are few, and the wait for service is at least six months.

The Buckleys are now hauling up to 45 gallons (170 liters) of water a day from neighbors for their four horses, a miniature pony and 14 goats that their daughter shows competitively. They have borrowed a 550-gallon (2,080-liter) water tank that they use for limited showers and laundry; Nathan Buckley hauls it into town every five days on a borrowed trailer to fill it up.

Buckley has spent weeks pulling records and using Google Earth to map every well within a quarter-mile (0.4 kilometers) of his house and now knows his own well is about a quarter-mile from a dry irrigation ditch.

“What if we spend $25,000 or $30,000 right now putting a well in, and next year it goes dry again? Then what? My gut says it’s a remote possibility,” he said. “But it is a possibility.”

Some homeowners, however, take an even broader view as their lawns die and they pay tens of thousands for new wells.

“You hear the word ‘unprecedented’ so many times that it loses its impact, but really, this is not normal,” said Roger Smith, a retired fish biologist who also must dig a deeper well after his went dry this summer.

“There’s been anger in the Klamath Basin for so long,” he said. “If this goes on for a few more years, some of these small communities will cease to exist.”

Flaccus reported from Portland, Oregon.

Nearly half of Republicans say ‘a time will come when patriotic Americans have to take the law into their own hands,’ new poll shows

Nearly half of Republicans say ‘a time will come when patriotic Americans have to take the law into their own hands,’ new poll shows

Stop the St
Pro-Trump protesters gather in front of the U.S. Capitol Building on January 6, 2021. Brent Stirton/Getty Images 

  • A new poll offers an alarming picture of GOP beliefs about democracy.
  • Almost half of Republicans said a time might come where they have to take the law into their own hands.
  • A majority of Republicans endorsed potentially using force to uphold the “traditional” America.

Less than a year after a pro-Trump mob stormed the US Capitol, nearly half of Republican voters (47%) say that “a time will come when patriotic Americans have to take the law into their own hands,” per a new nationwide survey by George Washington University’s School of Media and Public Affairs.

Only about 29% of Americans agreed with this statement on some level, the poll found, including just 9% of Democrats. And 49% said they disagree or strongly disagree.

The poll also found that a majority of Republicans (55%) say “the traditional American way of life is disappearing so fast we may have to use force to save it.” About 15% of Democrats agreed with this statement, but more Americans disagreed (46%) than agreed (34%).

More Republicans (27%) than Democrats (18%) said that “strong leaders sometimes have to bend the rules in order to get things done.”

The poll also found extremely low levels of trust among Republicans when it comes to elections – 82% said it’s “hard to trust the results of elections when so many people will vote for anyone who offers a handout.” Only 15% of Democrats were on the same page.

Echoing other recent polls on the 2020 election, the survey found that just 20% of Republicans were confident in the 2020 election results as compared to over 90% of Democrats.

The survey of of 1,753 registered US voters was conducted by YouGov from June 4 to 23.

Over the course of the Trump era, experts on democracy repeatedly raised concerns about the GOP’s slide into authoritarianism. Democracy scholars have continued to raise alarm as the GOP-led legislatures in states across the country push for restrictive voter laws, employing similar justifications to President Donald Trump’s baseless claims of mass voter fraud after he fairly lost the 2020 election. Along these lines, an ex-Trump administration official recently referred to the Republican party as the top national security threat to the US.

More than one quarter of Americans qualify as having right-wing authoritarian political beliefs, according to polling from Morning Consult released in late June.

Though Trump provoked an insurrection at the Capitol and stands as the only commander-in-chief in history to be impeached twice, he continues to be the leader of the Republican party. GOP leaders in Congress have also railed against a House investigation into the January 6 insurrection.

During a hearing on Tuesday held by the House select committee running the probe, four police officers testified about the violence they were subjected to by Trump’s supporters at the Capitol. One officer referred to the insurrections as “terrorists,” and another said the Capitol riot amounted to an “attempted coup.”

Record-smashing heat extremes may become much more likely with climate change – study

Record-smashing heat extremes may become much more likely with climate change – study

(Reuters) – Cyprus. Cuba. Turkey. Canada. Northern Ireland. Antarctica. All recorded their hottest-ever temperatures in the last two years, and according to a new study, more such extremes are coming.

In the next three decades, “record-shattering” heat waves could become two to seven times more frequent in the world than in the last 30 years, scientists report in a study published Monday in the journal Nature Climate Change.

Beyond 2050, if current greenhouse gas emissions trends continue, such record-breaking heat waves could be three to 21 times more frequent, the study found.

Even with the records seen in 2021, “we haven’t seen anything close to the most intense heat waves possible under today’s climate, let alone the ones we expect to see in the coming decades,” said co-author Erich Fischer, a climate scientist at ETH Zurich.

For the study, the researchers used climate modeling to calculate the likelihood of record-breaking heat that lasted at least seven days and far surpassed earlier records.

Communities preparing for climate change need to be preparing for such extremes, he said.

“Every time record temperatures or precipitation go well beyond what we’ve experienced during our lifetime, that’s usually when we’re unprepared and the damage is largest,” Fischer said.

Last month’s Canadian heat wave killed hundreds of people and reached 121 Fahrenheit (49.6 Celsius) – an eye-popping 8 degrees Fahrenheit (4.6 degrees Celsius) above the country’s previous record, set in 1937.

“We should no longer be surprised if we see records smashed by large margins,” Fischer said.

If greenhouse gas emissions are aggressively cut, the likelihood of heat waves would remain high but the chances of exceeding records would eventually fall over time, the study suggests.

The new research shows that “we must expect extreme event records to be broken – not just by small margins, but quite often by very large ones,” climate scientist Rowan Sutton at the University of Reading’s National Centre for Atmospheric Science said in a statement.

“This highlights the huge challenge to improve preparedness, build resilience and adapt society to conditions that have never previously been experienced,” Sutton said.

The study was released as scientists with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change begin two weeks of virtual meetings to finalize their next global climate science assessment.

(Reporting by Andrea Januta; Editing by Katy Daigle and Dan Grebler)

As drought cuts hay crop, cattle ranchers face culling herds

Associated Press

As drought cuts hay crop, cattle ranchers face culling herds


STEAMBOAT SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) — With his cattle ranch threatened by a deepening drought, Jim Stanko isn’t cheered by the coming storm signaled by the sound of thunder.

“Thunder means lightning, and lightning can cause fires,” said Stanko, who fears he’ll have to sell off half his herd of about 90 cows in Routt County outside of Steamboat Springs, Colorado if he can’t harvest enough hay to feed them.

As the drought worsens across the West and ushers in an early fire season, cattle ranchers are among those feeling the pain. Their hay yields are down, leading some to make the hard decision to sell off animals. To avoid the high cost of feed, many ranchers grow hay to nourish their herds through the winter when snow blankets the grass they normally graze.

But this year, Stanko’s hay harvest so far is even worse than it was last year. One field produced just 10 bales, down from 30 last year, amid heat waves and historically low water levels in the Yampa River, his irrigation source.

Some ranchers aren’t waiting to reduce the number of mouths they need to feed.

At the Loma Livestock auction in western Colorado, sales were bustling earlier this month even though its peak season isn’t usually until the fall when most calves are ready to be sold. Fueling the action are ranchers eager to unload cattle while prices are still strong.

“Everybody is gonna be selling their cows, so it’s probably smarter now to do it while the price is up before the market gets flooded,” said Buzz Bates, a rancher from Moab, Utah who was selling 209 cow-calf pairs, or about 30% of his herd.

Bates decided to trim his herd after a fire set off by an abandoned campfire destroyed part of his pasture, curbing his ability to feed them.

Weather has long factored into how ranchers manage their livestock and land, but those choices have increasingly centered around how herds can sustain drought conditions, said Kaitlynn Glover, executive director of natural resources at the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association.

“If it rained four inches, there wouldn’t be a cow to sell for five months,” said George Raftopoulos, owner of the auction house.

Raftopoulos says he encourages people to think twice before parting with their cows. Having to replace them later on might cost more than paying for additional hay, he said.

Culling herds can be an operational blow for cattle ranchers. It often means parting with cows selected for genetic traits that are optimal for breeding and are seen as long-term investments that pay dividends.

Jo Stanko, Jim’s wife and business partner, noted her cows were bred for their ability to handle the region’s temperature swings.

“We live in a very specialized place,” she said. “We need cattle that can do high and low temperatures in the same day.”

As the Stankos prepare to shrink their herd, they’re considering new lines of work to supplement their ranching income. One option on the table: offering hunting and fishing access or winter sleigh rides on their land.

The couple will know how many more cattle they’ll need to sell once they’re done storing hay in early September. They hope to cull just 10, but fear it could be as many as half the herd, or around 45 head.

Already, the family sold 21 head last year after a disappointing hay harvest. This year, the crop is even worse.

“With the heat, it’s burning up. I can’t cut it fast enough,” Jim Stanko said of the hay crop.


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What is La Niña? Does it bring more snow? How climate pattern could affect US weather.

What is La Niña? Does it bring more snow? How climate pattern could affect US weather.

So what exactly is La Niña?

The La Niña climate pattern is a natural cycle marked by cooler-than-average ocean water in the central Pacific Ocean. It is one of the main drivers of weather in the United States and around the world, especially during the late fall, winter and early spring.

It’s the opposite to the more well-known El Niño, which occurs when Pacific ocean water is warmer than average.

Both are Spanish language terms: La Niña means “little girl,” while El Niño means “little boy,” or “Christ child.” South American fishermen first noticed periods of unusually warm water in the Pacific Ocean in the 1600s, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said. The full name they used was “El Niño de Navidad” because El Niño typically peaks around December.

The entire natural climate cycle is officially known by climate scientists as El Niño – Southern Oscillation (ENSO), a see-saw dance of warmer and cooler seawater in the central Pacific Ocean.

During La Niña events, trade winds are even stronger than usual, pushing more warm water toward Asia, NOAA said. Off the west coast of the Americas, upwelling increases, bringing cold, nutrient-rich water to the surface.

These cold waters in the Pacific push the jet stream northward, which affects weather patterns in the U.S. and globally.

What is a La Niña winter?

A typical La Niña winter in the U.S. brings cold and snow to the Northwest and unusually dry conditions to most of the southern tier of the U.S., according to NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center. The Southeast and Mid-Atlantic also tend to see warmer-than-average temperatures during a La Niña winter.

New England and the Upper Midwest into New York tend to see colder-than-average temperatures, the Weather Channel said.

A typical wintertime La Nina pattern across North America. While the Pacific Northwest tends to be wetter-than-average, the southern tier of the U.S. is often unusually dry.
A typical wintertime La Nina pattern across North America. While the Pacific Northwest tends to be wetter-than-average, the southern tier of the U.S. is often unusually dry.


Because La Niña shifts storm tracks, it often brings more snow to the Ohio and Tennessee valleys. “Typically La Niña is not a big snow year in the mid-Atlantic,” said Mike Halpert, deputy director of the Climate Prediction Center. “You have a better chance up in New England.”

Texas A&M University agricultural economist Bruce McCarl said La Niña years are often bad for agriculture in Texas and the surrounding region. U.S. production of most crops – except corn – generally goes down in La Niña years, according to research by McCarl.

Globally, La Niña often brings heavy rainfall to Indonesia, the Philippines, northern Australia and southern Africa.

What to expect: La Niña climate pattern should return this fall and last through winter. Here’s what to expect.

During La Niña, waters off the Pacific coast are colder and contain more nutrients than usual. This environment supports more marine life and attracts more cold-water species, such as squid and salmon, to places like the California coast.

Can La Niña worsen the Atlantic hurricane season?

Yes, according to the Climate Prediction Center. “La Niña can contribute to an increase in Atlantic hurricane activity by weakening the wind shear over the Caribbean Sea and tropical Atlantic Basin, which enables storms to develop and intensify,” Halpert said in 2020.

Vertical wind shear refers to the change in wind speed and direction between roughly 5,000-35,000 feet above the ground, NOAA said. Strong vertical wind shear can rip a developing hurricane apart, or even prevent it from forming. This is what can happen in the Atlantic during an El Niño when Atlantic hurricane activity is often suppressed.

While La Niña tends to increase hurricanes in the Atlantic, it also tends to decrease their numbers in the eastern and central Pacific Ocean basins.

La Nina tends to increase hurricane activity in the Atlantic and decrease it in the Pacific.
La Nina tends to increase hurricane activity in the Atlantic and decrease it in the Pacific.

Southwest monsoon rain bringing drought relief — but also dangerous flooding

Southwest monsoon rain bringing drought relief — but also dangerous flooding


Monsoon rain in the Southwest is putting a dent in the extreme to exceptional drought across the region, and portions of Arizona and New Mexico are seeing some of the most significant improvements.

Over the next couple of days, the monsoon rain threat will diminish across those states, the National Weather Service said, and focus instead on southern portions of California, Nevada and Utah.

Rain was reported Monday morning in the Los Angeles area.

Although the rainfall helps diminish the drought, it can lead to dangerous floods.

“The heavy rain will create mainly localized areas of flash flooding, with urban areas, roads, and small streams the most vulnerable through Tuesday morning,” the weather service said. In the San Diego area, the weather service warned that “life-threatening debris flows will be possible near recent burn scars.”

Over the weekend, a flash flood swept away a 16-year-old girl in Cottonwood, Arizona. The girl, Faith Moore, who had been trying to cross a flooded road in her car, was missing as of Sunday evening.

“I want to stress again to the public how dangerous these water crossings can be, even when it looks shallow,” Verde Valley fire district chief Danny Johnson said. “A simple decision to cross the road with running water can quickly turn tragic.”

The body of a 4-year-old girl swept away by floodwaters in southeastern Arizona last Thursday was discovered Monday.

And three flood fatalities in Albuquerque, New Mexico, last week mark the deadliest flooding event at least in recent memory in Albuquerque, said Lt. Tom Ruiz, a spokesman for Albuquerque Fire Rescue.

Although there was a slight chance for thunderstorms over Northern California and into Oregon, including where some of the nation’s worst wildfires are raging, the threat of lightning strikes and gusty, erratic winds was not good news for firefighters battling the blazes there, the weather service in Sacramento said.

In Arizona, nearly 99% of the state is in some form of drought, according to the most recent U.S. Drought Monitor, which is published each Thursday.

The extent of the drought improved across the Southwest over the past week because of the rain, according to CNN. “The highest level of drought fell from 58% to 36% and marked improvements are expected again this week, with this current burst of monsoon moisture,” the network said.

Though the rain itself is popularly called a “monsoon,” the term scientifically means a seasonal shift in wind direction. In July, winds shift from the usual dry, westerly direction to the south and southeast, which taps into moisture from northern Mexico.

It’s that moisture that contributes to the summer thunderstorms that cause flash flooding. Even a small amount of rain can cause flooding, because it can’t soak into the rock-hard, bone-dry ground. Still, the monsoon provides more than half the annual rainfall to many communities in the Southwest.

The word “monsoon” is derived from the Arabic mausim, meaning “season,” according to the American Meteorological Society. Monsoon season usually runs from July until September in the Southwest.

The Southwest monsoon is not nearly as intense as the Asian monsoon, which often brings catastrophic flooding to India and other nations.

Contributing: Elinor Aspegren, USA TODAY; Chelsea Curtis, The Arizona Republic; The Associated Press.