Resilience in the Face of the Onslaught

By Charles M. Blow – July 11, 2024

A blurry photo shows President Biden speaking at a podium in front of the American flag.
Credit…Jamie Kelter Davis for The New York Times

Joe Biden is still standing, refusing to bow out — he reiterated that once again in a lengthy and mostly successful news conference on Thursday night. Some may view it as selfish and irresponsible. Some may even see it as dangerous. But I see it as remarkable.

Despite sending a clear message — in his recent flurry of interviews and rallies, in his stalwart address this week to members of the NATO alliance and in his letter on Monday to congressional Democrats, in which he assured them that “I wouldn’t be running again if I did not absolutely believe I was the best person to beat Donald Trump in 2024” — there’s still a slow drumbeat from luminaries, donors and elected officials trying to write Biden’s political obituary.

The talent agency mogul Ari Emanuel (a brother of Rahm Emanuel, Biden’s ambassador to Japan), recently said Biden “is not the candidate anymore.” In a post on X, the best-selling author Stephen King said that it’s time for Biden “to announce he will not run for re-election.” Abigail Disney, an heiress to the Walt Disney fortune, said, “I intend to stop any contributions to the party unless and until they replace Biden at the top of the ticket.”

They seem to believe that they can kill his candidacy, by a thousand cuts or by starving it to death.

But none of this sits well with me.

First, because Biden is, in fact, his party’s presumptive nominee. He won the primaries. He has the delegates. He got there via an open, organized and democratic process.

Forcing him out, against his will, seems to me an invalidation of that process. And the apparent justification for this, that polls, which are highly fluctuant, now indicate that some voters want him replaced, is insufficient; responses to polls are not votes.

Yes, two weeks ago, Biden had a bad debate, and may well be diminished. Yes, there’s a chance he could lose this election. That chance exists for any candidate. But allowing elites to muscle him out of the race would be playing a dangerous game that is not without its own very real risk. It won’t guarantee victory and may produce chaos. The logic that says you have to dump Biden in order to defeat Trump is at best a gamble, the product of panicked people in well-furnished parlors.

Furthermore, no one has really made the case that whatever decline Biden may be experiencing has significantly impacted his policy decision-making or eroded America’s standing in the world. The arguments center on the visual evidence of somewhat worrisome comportment but mostly speculation about cognition.

That is just not enough.

I am not a Biden acolyte. I’ve never met the man. And I’m not arguing against the sense among those who have seen him up close and express worry. I’m not pro-Biden as much as I am pro-stay the course.

Like Biden’s Democratic doubters, I want above all to prevent Trump from being re-elected and to ensure the preservation of democracy. It’s just that I believe allowing Biden to remain at the top of the Democratic ticket is the best way to achieve that.

And since that’s the goal, perhaps the best argument in Biden’s favor is that his mettle has been revealed by the onslaught of criticism he has endured since the debate, much of it from other liberals.

Biden’s support hasn’t cratered, as one might have expected. Which suggests that the idea that Biden can’t win — or that another Democrat would have an easier run — is speculative at best.

Indeed, when I saw one headline that read, “Poll finds Biden damaged by debate; with Harris and Clinton best positioned to win,” I thought: Hillary Clinton? Now we’re truly in fantasy baseball territory.

And in the national poll on which that article was premised, Biden trailed Trump by just one percentage point while Vice President Kamala Harris led Trump by just one percentage point; in both cases, well within the margin of error.

A new Washington Post-ABC News-Ipsos poll found that Biden and Trump are tied nationally.

As for hypothetical candidates like Harris — who I do believe would acquit herself well at the top of the ticket — that same poll shows her performing slightly better against Trump than Biden does. But that is in the abstract, before the chaos of a candidate change, and before she received the full-frontal assault that being the actual nominee would surely bring. And in an era of opposition to “wokeness” and the values of diversity, equity and inclusion, that frontal assault, directed at the first Black, Asian American and female vice president, would be savage.

The potential drag on down-ballot races is a legitimate concern for some Democrats, but it appears to be the panic of some down-ballot candidates that has exacerbated the problem, as more than a dozen House Democrats and one Senate Democrat have called for Biden to leave the race.

There’s no guarantee that swapping out candidates would leave Democrats in a better position, but I believe the case is building that the continued dithering among Democrats about Biden’s candidacy is doing further damage to their chances.

Biden’s candidacy may not survive. But forcing him out of it may hurt Democrats more than it helps them, even with voters who say they want a different choice.

More on President Biden:

David French: Biden Has an Inner Circle Problem. He’s Not the Only One. – July 11, 2024

Ezra Klein: Democrats Are Drifting Toward the Worst of All Possible Worlds – July 11, 2024

Charles M. Blow is an Opinion columnist for The New York Times, writing about national politics, public opinion and social justice, with a focus on racial equality and L.G.B.T.Q. rights.

What Does the G.O.P. Have Against America?

By Paul Krugman – July 11, 2024

A lectern and a teleprompter at an outdoor rally for Donald Trump. In the middle ground is a crowd of people and in the background are palm trees.
Credit…Scott McIntyre for The New York Times

While Democrats tear themselves apart over President Biden’s disastrous debate performance and his refusal to consider stepping aside, the Republican National Committee, without much fanfare, has released its 2024 platform.

Compared with previous platforms, it dials back references to abortion — downplaying what is, for Republicans, a losing issue. That choice goes along with Donald Trump’s recent attempt to distance himself from the extremist Project 2025 — even though that blueprint was concocted by some of his close political allies. Here, Trump is clearly employing sleight of hand in an effort not to be seen as autocratically inclined. But at this point, if you believe that, I have a degree from Trump University I’d like to sell you.

In any case, there’s nothing moderate about a platform whose first plank reads, “SEAL THE BORDER, AND STOP THE MIGRANT INVASION” and whose second item calls for “THE LARGEST DEPORTATION OPERATION IN AMERICAN HISTORY.” (Yes, the list is in all caps, just in case you need help imagining Trump shouting it to you from a Mar-a-Lago ballroom.)

I’ll have a lot more to say about Republican policy ideas in the weeks ahead. For today, however, I want to focus not on what the platform proposes but what it says about the G.O.P. image of America today — a dystopian vision that bears hardly any resemblance to the vibrant country I know, a nation that has coped remarkably well with the aftermath of the Covid-19 pandemic. Republicans may try to brand themselves as patriots, but they truly appear to despise the nation they live in.

Start with item No. 10, which begins with the promise to “STOP THE MIGRANT CRIME EPIDEMIC” — presumably one of the justifications for mass deportations. Any attempt to carry out such deportations would be a humanitarian, social and economic nightmare. But leaving that aside, the whole premise is false. There is no epidemic of migrant crime in America.

Yes, some Americans have been the victims of terrible crimes, and some of the perpetrators have been migrants. But violent crime in America, homicides in particular, which surged during the last year of the Trump administration — a year of low immigration — has plunged over the past two years.

And Americans have been signaling by their behavior, literally voting with their feet, that our big cities feel fairly safe. Downtown foot traffic on nights and weekends — that is, traffic that mainly reflects people going out for shopping and entertainment rather than for work — is close to or above prepandemic levels in many major cities.

Far from facing a crime “epidemic,” America has been highly successful in recovering from the Trump crime wave.

The G.O.P. platform also pledges to “MAKE AMERICA THE DOMINANT ENERGY PRODUCER IN THE WORLD.” The subtext here is the pervasive belief on the right that woke environmentalists have undermined the U.S. energy sector.

Given how often one hears this asserted, it’s a bit shocking to look at the data and learn that America produced more energy in 2023 than ever before. In fact, we’ve become a major energy exporter, for example selling Europe vast quantities of liquefied natural gas that helped it reduce dependence on Russian supplies after Vladimir Putin invaded Ukraine.

The area in which we’re really lagging China is renewable energy, which the Biden-Harris administration is promoting — and Republicans hate.

Further, the platform promises to “END INFLATION, AND MAKE AMERICA AFFORDABLE AGAIN.” In reality, inflation is already way down — from 9 percent at its peak to just 3 percent as measured by the Consumer Price Index, and is probably down to 2.4 percent according to an alternative price index preferred by the Federal Reserve. Gasoline and groceries are just as affordable, as measured by their prices compared with the average hourly earnings of nonmanagerial workers, as they were in 2019.

So what are Republicans talking about? Are they promising to roll back the price increases that took place almost everywhere as the world economy recovered from the pandemic? We haven’t seen deflation on that scale since the Great Depression — not exactly an experience we want to repeat.

Why does the Republican vision of America, as revealed in the party’s platform, bear so little resemblance to reality? A large part of it, I believe, is that the party instinctively favors harsh, punitive policies — which obliges it to believe that failure to pursue such policies must lead to disaster, even when it doesn’t. Democrats haven’t been deporting millions or toying with the idea of shooting protesters, therefore, the logic seems to go, we must be experiencing a crime epidemic. Democrats care about the environment, therefore they must be hampering energy production. Democrats want to expand health care coverage and alleviate poverty, therefore they must be feeding runaway inflation.

For a little while, reality seemed to cooperate with some of these grim visions, mainly because of spillovers from the pandemic and its aftermath. We did have a spike in homicides, although it mostly happened on Trump’s watch. We did have a burst of inflation, but it’s behind us.

Bottom line, there’s no reason at all to believe that Republicans have moderated their extremist agenda. Energy independence — which we have already achieved! — won’t be on the ballot this year. Health care, abortion and, probably, birth control will.

Paul Krugman has been an Opinion columnist since 2000 and is also a distinguished professor at the City University of New York Graduate Center. He won the 2008 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences for his work on international trade and economic geography.

Rising Frustration in Houston After Millions Lost Power in Storm

With outages expected to last days, a top state official promised to look into whether the utility company could have done more to prepare for Hurricane Beryl.

By J. David Goodman and Ivan Penn July 10, 2024 

Reporting from Houston and Los Angeles.

Toppled power poles block part of a street, as cars approach.
Fallen power lines littered the roads in Galveston after Hurricane Beryl hit the Texas coast on Monday.Credit…Meridith Kohut for The New York Times

The sun felt hotter than usual in Houston this week, as millions of sweltering residents emerged from the rapid thrashing of Hurricane Beryl to face a prolonged power outage — the largest ever seen by the city’s utility, according to the state’s lieutenant governor.

The outages from the storm affected as many as 2.7 million customers across the state, mostly in and around Houston. Despite a promise by the utility, CenterPoint Energy, to restore power to one million customers by the end of the day on Wednesday, large swaths of the nation’s fourth-biggest city remained without power.

The scale of the outages raised questions about whether enough had been done to prepare the city, just 50 miles from the Gulf Coast, for the kinds of storms that climate scientists predict will arrive with greater frequency.

“For a Category 1 hurricane to result in over a million customer outages in its immediate aftermath demonstrates that there is plenty of need for the resiliency hardening investments,” said Wei Du, an energy expert with PA Consulting and a former senior analyst and engineer for Con Edison.

Beryl was not a particularly strong storm when it made landfall early Monday. But the hurricane struck at the heart of Houston with a ferocity that toppled trees into power lines and that knocked over 10 transmission towers, officials said.

By late Tuesday, some 1.5 million of CenterPoint’s customers still had no power — and little sense of when it would return. Neighbors reported flickerings of light to each other on group chats, hoping for signs of progress. Many shared a map of open Whataburger locations, suggesting that the fast-food chain was a better way to find out about available electricity service, compared with the spotty information released by the utility.

As the temperatures rose, so did many residents’ anger.

“The response has been too slow,” said Patricia Alexander, 79, who sat in a cooling center in northwest Houston to get a break from the heat inside the senior center where she lives. “The mayor said he was looking out for senior centers and that CenterPoint’s teams were prioritizing senior facilities, but I don’t believe it, because we don’t have air-conditioning.”

Cars make their way in the darkness toward a nonfunctioning traffic light.
About 2.2 million customers — 80 percent of the utility’s customers in the Houston area — lost power in the storm, a CenterPoint Energy spokesman said.Credit…Meridith Kohut for The New York Times

The sheer number of damaged lines accounted for the extent of the outages, which surpassed those during Hurricane Ike in 2008. After that storm, the utility described making efforts to better manage the vegetation around power lines.

Company officials said they had been surprised by the behavior of the storm, which initially was expected to strike further south but instead hit near Matagorda, Texas, after strengthening somewhat and then spiraling north toward Houston.

“No one should have been surprised,” said Dan Patrick, the state’s lieutenant governor, who has been acting in place of Gov. Greg Abbott while he travels abroad.

Mr. Patrick said in a news conference that he wanted the utility to focus on restoring power, but that afterward the company would need to explain its preparations for the storm.

“If they made mistakes beforehand, then that will be addressed,” Mr. Patrick said. “The real question is: Were they as prepared as they should be? And that’s up to them to answer, and they will answer not only to the public but to the P.U.C.,” he added, referring to the state’s Public Utility Commission.

Texas officials have spent much of the past few years worrying about the vulnerability of the state’s power grid to extreme cold after a failure during a winter storm in 2021.

But amid increasingly frequent extreme heat, the grid has also been tested in the summer, not just during storms but also on hot, cloudless days when energy demand is high.

“It’s not just during a storm: Texas in general tends to have more outages on a blue sky day than other states,” said Doug Lewin, an energy consultant and the author of the Texas Energy and Power newsletter. “We rank very poorly compared to other states. We’ve got a long way to go.”

In CenterPoint’s last three annual reports to federal regulators, including the most recent one in February, the utility said it had risks related to aging facilities. “Aging infrastructure may complicate our utility operations’ ability to address climate change concerns and efforts to enhance resiliency and reliability,” the company told the Securities and Exchange Commission.

A spokeswoman for CenterPoint said that the company had monitored Beryl’s development and had prepared, but “a lot of the issues were just purely because the hurricane hit more intensely than we expected.”

In particular, the company said, many of the outages occurred after trees fell on power lines.

“While we tracked the projected path, intensity and timing for Hurricane Beryl closely for many days, this storm proved the unpredictability of hurricanes as it delivered a powerful blow across our service territory and impacted a lot of lives,” Lynnae Wilson, senior vice president for CenterPoint, said in a statement.

About 2.2 million customers — 80 percent of the utility’s customers in the Houston area — lost power in the storm, a company spokesman said.

Utility experts said that power companies have little excuse for not being ready for events that develop over the course of days, in particular when the primary job is to deliver safe, reliable service.

“Most of all, it really is the preparation issue,” said Robert McCullough, of McCullough Research, a consulting firm based in Portland, Ore. “Mild storm. Why weren’t we better prepared?”

A house stands surrounded by floodwaters.
The outages from Beryl came less than two months after powerful thunderstorms knocked out power across Houston in May.Credit…Daniel Becerril/Reuters

In April, CenterPoint filed a resiliency plan with the state, proposing to spend billions to “modernize and harden our existing infrastructure” to increase reliability. A significant focus, according to the plan, is to modernize the company’s transmission and distribution systems.

After a series of powerful hurricanes struck Florida two decades ago, that state took steps to improve its electrical infrastructure.

The process, which included burying a targeted number of power lines, appeared to bear fruit, according to a 2024 report by the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. The power grid grew more resilient to storms, the report found.

But simply burying power lines underground is not always the best solution, experts say, particularly in areas that are prone to flooding, like many parts of Houston.

“In areas where you worry more about water, you can end up making the system more vulnerable and more expensive when you underground,” said Ted Kury, director of energy studies for the Public Utility Research Center at the University of Florida. “Storm hardening is often a choice between what type of damage you’re more concerned about,” he added.

If it’s water, you go aboveground and accept the wind damage, he said, and “if it’s wind, you might want to underground” but would then have to worry about the water.

The $2.19 billion investment plan proposed by CenterPoint includes upgrading or replacing existing poles and structures to meet current wind loading standards, and improving the distribution system to prevent automatic shut-offs. The plan also proposes a pilot program to assess whether “utility-scale” microgrids can speed up the restoration of power during a fire or weather emergency.

The plan, which still needs state approval, calls for making these investments over a three-year period from 2025 to 2027.

A committee of the Texas Legislature was set to meet on Monday in Austin to discuss the utility resiliency issue — but the meeting was canceled because of the storm.

Delay is becoming more costly. Greenhouse gas emissions are increasing the capacity of the atmosphere to hold moisture, leading to more rain, more flooding and more potential for trees to fall, said Karthik Balaguru, a researcher at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. “I think Houston is an area that we should expect more outages,” he said.

The outages from Beryl came less than two months after powerful thunderstorms knocked out power across Houston in May. Hundreds of thousands of residents lost power in that storm, and many of the same people found themselves again dumping spoiled food and looking for cool air this week.

“This is a double whammy,” said Cleveland James, 70, of West Houston, describing the almost back-to-back storms as he sat in the local cooling center. “I lost power for five days. So that doesn’t give me much encouragement that it will come back soon. I think it’ll take a week.”

Ms. Alexander, nearby, said she worried that Beryl would not be the last time she found herself without power this summer.

“This is going to happen again,” she said of the storm, only the second to get a name this hurricane season. “I mean, we’re only in the B’s.”

Shannon Sims contributed reporting from Houston.

J. David Goodman is the Houston bureau chief for The Times, reporting on Texas and Oklahoma. More about J. David Goodman

Ivan Penn is a reporter based in Los Angeles and covers the energy industry. His work has included reporting on clean energy, failures in the electric grid and the economics of utility services. More about Ivan Penn

Extreme heat waves broiling the US in 2024 aren’t normal: How climate change is heating up weather around the world

The Conversation

Extreme heat waves broiling the US in 2024 aren’t normal: How climate change is heating up weather around the world

Mathew Barlow and Jeffrey Basara, UMass Lowell – July 9, 2024

Visitors walk past a sign reading 'Stop: Extreme Heat Danger' in Death Valley National Park during a heat wave on July 7, 2024. <a href=
Visitors walk past a sign reading ‘Stop: Extreme Heat Danger’ in Death Valley National Park during a heat wave on July 7, 2024. Etienne Laurent/AFP via Getty Images

Less than a month into summer 2024, the vast majority of the U.S. population has already experienced an extreme heat wave. Millions of people were under heat warnings across the western U.S. in early July or sweating through humid heat in the East.

Death Valley hit a dangerous 129 degrees Fahrenheit (53.9 C) on July 7, a day after a motorcyclist died from heat exposure there. Las Vegas broke its all-time heat record at 120 F (48.9 C). In California, days of over-100-degree heat in large parts of the state dried out the landscape, fueling wildfires. Oregon reported several suspected heat deaths.

Extreme heat like this has been hitting countries across the planet in 2024.

Globally, each of the past 13 months has been the hottest on record for that month, including the hottest June, according to the European Union’s Copernicus climate service. The service reported on July 8, 2024, that the average temperature for the previous 12 months had also been at least 1.5 C (2.7 F) warmer than the 1850-1900 pre-industrial average.

The 1.5 C warming threshold can be confusing, so let’s take a closer look at what that means. In the Paris climate agreement, countries worldwide agreed to work to keep global warming under 1.5 C, however that refers to the temperature change averaged over a 30-year period. A 30-year average is used to limit the influence of natural year-to-year fluctuations.

So far, the Earth has only crossed that threshold for a single year. However, it is still extremely concerning, and the world appears to be on track to cross the 30-year average threshold of 1.5 C within 10 years.

A chart shows yearly averages and the trend line going out 10 more years before it crosses 1.5 C for the 30-year average.
Global temperatures showing the trend line averaged over 30 years. Copernicus Climate Change and Atmosphere Monitoring Services

We study weather patterns involving heat. The early season heat, part of a warming trend fueled by humans, is putting lives at risk around the world.

Heat is becoming a global problem

Record heat has hit several countries across the Americas, Africa, Europe and Asia in 2024. In Mexico and Central America, weeks of persistent heat starting in spring 2024 combined with prolonged drought led to severe water shortages and dozens of deaths.

Extreme heat turned into tragedy in Saudi Arabia, as over 1,000 people on the Hajj, a Muslim pilgrimage to Mecca, collapsed and died. Temperatures reached 125 F (51.8 C) at the Grand Mosque in Mecca on June 17.

A large number of people in traditional clothing covering them from their necks to their wrists and ankles walk on wide pathway, some carrying umbrellas for shade.
Muslim pilgrims spent hours in extreme temperatures and humidity during the Hajj in June 2024 in Saudi Arabia. Over 1,000 people died in the heat. AP Photo/Rafiq Maqbool

Hospitals in Karachi, Pakistan, were overwhelmed amid weeks of high heat, frequent power outages, and water shortages in some areas. Neighboring India faced temperatures around 120 F (48.9 C) for several days in April and May that affected millions of people, many of them without air conditioning.

In Greece, where temperatures were over 100 F (37.8 C) for days in June, several tourists died or were feared dead after going hiking in dangerous heat and humidity.

Japan issued heatstroke alerts in Tokyo and more than half of its prefectures as temperatures rose to record highs in early July.

The climate connection: This isn’t ‘just summer’

Although heat waves are a natural part of the climate, the severity and extent of the heat waves so far in 2024 are not “just summer.”

A scientific assessment of the fierce heat wave in the eastern U.S. in June 2024 estimates that heat so severe and long-lasting was two to four times more likely to occur today because of human-caused climate change than it would have been without it. This conclusion is consistent with the rapid increase over the past several decades in the number of U.S. heat waves and their occurrence outside the peak of summer.

These record heat waves are happening in a climate that’s globally more than 2.2 F (1.2 C) warmer – when looking at the 30-year average – than it was before the industrial revolution, when humans began releasing large amounts of greenhouse gas emissions that warm the climate.

Two global maps show much faster warming per decade over the past 30 years than in the past 120 years.
Global surface temperatures have risen faster per decade in the past 30 years than over the past 120. NOAA NCEI

While a temperature difference of a degree or two when you walk into a different room might not even be noticeable, even fractions of a degree make a large difference in the global climate.

At the peak of the last ice age, some 20,000 years ago, when the Northeast U.S. was under thousands of feet of ice, the globally averaged temperature was only about 11 F (6 C) cooler than now. So, it is not surprising that 2.2 F (1.2 C) of warming so far is already rapidly changing the climate.

If you thought this was hot

While this summer is likely be one of the hottest on record, it is important to realize that it may also be one of the coldest summers of the future.

For populations that are especially vulnerable to heat, including young children, older adults and outdoor workers, the risks are even higher. People in lower-income neighborhoods where air conditioning may be unaffordable and renters who often don’t have the same protections for cooling as heating will face increasingly dangerous conditions.

Extreme heat can also affect economies. It can buckle railroad tracks and cause wires to sag, leading to transit delays and disruptions. It can also overload electric systems with high demand and lead to blackouts just when people have the greatest need for cooling.

The good news: There are solutions

Yes, the future in a warming world is daunting. However, while countries aren’t on pace to meet their Paris Agreement goals, they have made progress.

In the U.S., the 2022 Inflation Reduction Act has the potential to reduce U.S. greenhouse gas emissions by nearly half by 2035.

Switching from air conditioners to heat pumps and network geothermal systems can not only reduce fossil fuel emissions but also provide cooling at a lower cost. The cost of renewable energy continues to plummet, and many countries are increasing policy support and incentives.

A chart shows the number of heat waves is likely to be four times higher in a world 2.7 F (1.5 C) warmer and nearly five times higher in a world 6.3 F (3.5 C) warmer. Both scenarios are possible as global emissions rise.
Actions to reduce warming can limit a wide range of hazards and create numerous near-term benefits and opportunities. National Climate Assessment 2023

There is much that humanity can do to limit future warming if countries, companies and people everywhere act with urgency. Rapidly reducing fossil fuel emissions can help avoid a warmer future with even worse heat waves and droughts, while also providing other benefits, including improving public health, creating jobs and reducing risks to ecosystems.

Read more:

Mathew Barlow has received funding from the NOAA Modeling, Analysis, Predictions and Projections Program to study heatwaves.

Jeffrey Basara has received funding from the United States Department of Agriculture and the National Science Foundation to study flash drought and extreme temperatures.

Las Vegas hits record of fifth consecutive day of 115 degrees or greater as heat wave scorches US

Associated Press

Las Vegas hits record of fifth consecutive day of 115 degrees or greater as heat wave scorches US

Ken Ritter and TY ONeil – July 10, 2024

People cool off in misters along the Las Vegas Strip, Sunday, July 7, 2024, in Las Vegas. Used to shrugging off the heat, Las Vegas residents are now eyeing the thermometer as the desert city is on track Wednesday to set a record for the most consecutive days over 115 degrees (46.1 C) amid a lingering hot spell that’s expected to continue scorching much of the U.S. into the weekend. (AP Photo/John Locher, File)
People shield their eyes from the sun along the Las Vegas Strip, Sunday, July 7, 2024, in Las Vegas. Used to shrugging off the heat, Las Vegas residents are now eyeing the thermometer as the desert city is on track Wednesday to set a record for the most consecutive days over 115 degrees (46.1 C) amid a lingering hot spell that’s expected to continue scorching much of the U.S. into the weekend. (AP Photo/John Locher, File)
David Clarke who is suffering homelessness and living in his car with his 6 dogs, takes to the shade at the Sepulveda Basin dog park in Los Angeles on Tuesday, July 9, 2024. Dozens of locations in the West and Pacific Northwest tied or broke previous heat records over the weekend and are expected to keep doing so into the week. (AP Photo/Richard Vogel)
Tourists take photographs with the thermometer at the Furnace Creek Visitor Center during a dangerous heat wave, Tuesday, July 9, 2024, in Death Valley, Calif. The thermostat is imprecise, registering the temperature anywhere from 1 to 5 degrees Fahrenheit higher than more precise instruments and providing a more impressive reading for pictures. (AP Photo/Ty ONeil)
Matt Fiedler takes a photo of daughter Sally Fiedler, left, and wife Cecilia Fiedler by the thermometer at the Furnace Creek Visitor Center, Tuesday, July 9, 2024, in Death Valley, Calif. European tourists and adventurers from around the U.S. are still being drawn to Death Valley National Park, even though the desolate region known as one of the Earth’s hottest places is being punished by a dangerous heat wave. (AP Photo/Ty ONeil)
Louis Lacey, director of homeless response teams at Help of Southern Nevada, speaks to a homeless woman to offer water in Las Vegas, on Tuesday, July 9, 2024. Help of Southern Nevada travels the streets with flyers about heat, water and vehicles to transport people to cooling centers. (Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal via AP)

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Las Vegas baked Wednesday in its record fifth consecutive day of temperatures sizzling at 115 degrees Fahrenheit (46.1 Celsius) or greater amid a lengthening hot spell that is expected to broil much of the U.S. into the weekend.

The temperature climbed to 115 shortly after 1 p.m. at Harry Reid International Airport, breaking the old mark of four consecutive days set in July 2005. And the record could be extended, or even doubled, by the weekend.

Even by desert standards, the prolonged baking that Nevada’s largest city is experiencing is nearly unprecedented, with forecasters calling it “the most extreme heat wave” since the National Weather Service began keeping records in Las Vegas in 1937.

Already the city has broken 16 heat records since June 1, well before the official start of summer, “and we’re not even halfway through July yet,” meteorologist Morgan Stessman said Wednesday. That includes an all-time high of 120 F (48.8 C) set on Sunday, which beat the previous 117 F (47.2 C) record.

Alyse Sobosan said this July has felt the hottest in the 15 years she has lived in Las Vegas. She said she doesn’t step outside during the day if she can help it.

“It’s oppressively hot,” she said. “It’s like you can’t really live your life.”

It’s also dangerously hot, health officials have emphasized. There have been at least nine heat-related deaths this year in Clark County, which encompasses Las Vegas, according to the county coroner’s office. Officials say the toll is likely higher.

“Even people of average age who are seemingly healthy can suffer heat illness when it’s so hot it’s hard for your body to cool down,” said Alexis Brignola, an epidemiologist at the Southern Nevada Health District.

For homeless residents and others without access to safe environments, officials have set up emergency cooling centers at community centers across southern Nevada.

The Las Vegas area has been under an excessive heat warning on three separate occasions this summer, totaling about 12 days of dangerous heat with little relief even after the sun goes down, Stessman said.

Keith Bailey and Lee Doss met early Wednesday morning at a Las Vegas park to beat the heat and exercise their dogs, Breakie, Ollie and Stanley.

“If I don’t get out by 8:30 in the morning, then it’s not going to happen that day,” Bailey said, wearing a sunhat while the dogs played in the grass.

More than 142 million people around the U.S. were under heat alerts Wednesday, especially in Western states, where dozens of locations tied or broke heat records over the weekend and are expected to keep doing so all week.

Oregon has seen record daily high temperatures, with Portland reaching 103 F (39.4 C) and Salem and Eugene hitting 105 F (40.5 C) on Tuesday. The number of potentially heat-related deaths in Oregon has risen to 10, according to the state medical examiner’s office. The latest two deaths involved a 54-year-old man in Jackson County and a 27-year-old man in Klamath County.

On the other side of the nation, the National Weather Service warned of major-to-extreme heat risk over portions of the East Coast.

An excessive heat warning remained in place Wednesday for the Philadelphia area, northern Delaware and nearly all of New Jersey. Temperatures were around 90 F (32.2 C) for most of the region, and forecasters warned the heat index could soar as high as 108 F (42.2 C). The warning was due to expire at 8 p.m. Wednesday, though forecasters said there may be a need to extend it.

The heat was blamed for a motorcyclist’s death over the weekend in Death Valley National Park. At Death Valley on Tuesday, tourists queued for photos in front of a giant thermometer that was reading 120 F (48.9 C).

Simon Pell and Lisa Gregory from London left their air-conditioned RV to experience a midday blast of heat that would be unthinkable back home.

“I wanted to experience what it would feel like,” Pell said. “It’s an incredible experience.”

At the Grand Canyon, the National Park Service was investigating the third hiker death in recent weeks. Temperatures on parts of some trails can reach 120 F (49 C) in the shade.

An excessive heat warning continued Wednesday in many parts of southern and central Arizona. Forecasters said the high in Phoenix was expected to reach 114 F (45.5 C) after it hit 116 F (46.6 C) Tuesday, tying the previous record for the date set in 1958.

Authorities were investigating the death of a 2-year-old who was left alone in a hot vehicle Tuesday afternoon in Marana, near Tucson, police said. At Lake Havasu, a 4-month-old died from heat-related complications Friday, the Mohave County Sheriff’s Department said.

The U.S. heat wave came as the global temperature in June was a record warm for the 13th straight month and marked the 12th straight month that the world was 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 degrees Fahrenheit) warmer than pre-industrial times, the European climate service Copernicus said. Most of this heat, trapped by human-caused climate change, is from long-term warming from greenhouse gases emitted by the burning of coal, oil and natural gas, scientists say.

Firefighters in Henderson, Nevada, last week became the first in the region to deploy what city spokesperson Madeleine Skains called “ polar pods, ” devices filled with water and ice to cool a person exhibiting symptoms of heat stroke or a related medical emergency.

Extreme heat in the West has also dried out vegetation that fuels wildfires.

A blaze burning in northern Oregon, about 111 miles (178 kilometers) east of Portland, blew up to 11 square miles (28 square kilometers) by Wednesday afternoon due to hot temperatures, gusty wind and low humidity, according to the Oregon State Fire Marshal. The Larch Creek Fire closed Highway 197 and forced evacuations for remote homes.

In California, firefighters were battling least 19 wildfires Wednesday, including a 45-square-mile (117-square-kilometer) blaze that prompted evacuation orders for about 200 homes in the mountains of Santa Barbara County.

Associated Press journalists Rio Yamat in Las Vegas; Anita Snow in Phoenix; Scott Sonner and Gabe Stern in Reno, Nevada; Christopher Weber and John Antczak in Los Angeles; Martha Bellisle in Seattle and Bruce Shipkowski in Toms River, New Jersey; contributed to this report.

US heat wave turns deadly as high temperatures continue to scorch the West

CNN

US heat wave turns deadly as high temperatures continue to scorch the West

Robert Shackelford, Sydney Bishop, Rachel Ramirez, Angela Dewan, Raja Razek and Jamiel Lynch – July 8, 2024

(CNN) — More than 50 million people across the US are under heat alerts amid a brutal heat wave that has shattered records and caused multiple deaths across the West.

As of Monday, much of the West and South are experiencing moderate to major heat risk, the National Weather Service said.

California and Nevada are expected to see more daily record high temperatures in the week ahead. By Thursday, the heat in the Pacific Northwest will shift to the Intermountain West and northern High Plains, the National Weather Service’s Weather Prediction Center cautions.

In Oregon, four people died of suspected heat-related illnesses over the weekend, according to a Monday news release from Multnomah County. Three of the four were residents of Multnomah County, while the other individual was transported from outside the county and later died at a Portland hospital.

These deaths happened after the county declared a state of emergency Friday due to “dangerously hot temperatures,” but the news release noted “further tests and investigation will determine whether the deaths are officially hot-weather-related. In some cases, the deaths may be found to have had other causes.”

Dozens of locations in the West and Pacific Northwest tied or broke previous heat records in recent days, and more than 165 daily high temperature records could be tied or broken this week.

A motorcyclist died Saturday in California’s Death Valley from heat exposure, the Death Valley National Park said in a news release. The high temperature that day was 128 degrees Fahrenheit, according to preliminary data.

Six motorcyclists were near Badwater Basin when they became sick due to the heat, the release said. In addition to the cyclist who died, one was transported to a hospital in Las Vegas and the other four were treated on scene.

Rescue efforts were hampered due to the extreme heat at the park, as emergency medical flight helicopters cannot fly safely when it is over 120 degrees, the release noted.

“Heat illness and injury are cumulative and can build over the course of a day or days,” the release said. “Besides not being able to cool down while riding due to high ambient air temperatures, experiencing Death Valley by motorcycle when it is this hot is further challenged by the necessary heavy safety gear worn to reduce injuries during an accident.”

Heat is the deadliest weather threat in the United States, killing more than twice as many people each year on average than hurricanes and tornadoes combined.

Record-high heat during a holiday weekend

Death Valley was among a slew of places where daily temperature records were broken this Fourth of July weekend.

On Saturday, Death Valley reached 128 degrees, breaking the daily record of 127 set on July 6, 2007. An excessive heat warning is in effect until late Wednesday evening for the area where temperatures are expected to be between 122 to 129 degrees.

Areas across the West are bracing for multiple days of triple-digit temperatures this week. - Etienne Laurent/AFP/Getty Images
Areas across the West are bracing for multiple days of triple-digit temperatures this week. – Etienne Laurent/AFP/Getty Images

On the more-humid East Coast, temperatures above 100 degrees were also widespread, The Associated Press reported.

Many areas in Northern California surpassed 110 degrees Sunday, while Phoenix, Arizona, set a new daily record for the warmest low temperature: it never got below 92 degrees.

Las Vegas also made history, reaching a record high of 120 degrees on Sunday.

Indiana resident Mark Kavacinski told CNN affiliate KVVU his family almost canceled their vacation to Las Vegas because of the intense heat.

“We knew it was going to be hot. It’s July, right? Did we know it was going to be this hot? No,” Kavacinski said. “But we decided that heat’s heat. We can handle it.”

Las Vegas hit an all-time high temperature record on Sunday, with 120 degrees. - John Locher/AP
Las Vegas hit an all-time high temperature record on Sunday, with 120 degrees. – John Locher/AP

Las Vegas temperatures have exceeded 110 degrees each day since Wednesday and are forecast to do so every day until at least next Sunday, which would mark a stretch of prolonged extreme heat longer than any ever experienced in the city, with 11 days or more above 110 degrees.

Sunday’s heat was enough to melt crayons, the weather service office in Las Vegas demonstrated on X.

And parts of western Nevada and northeastern California won’t see temperatures below 100 degrees until next weekend, the National Weather Service office in Reno said.

Further north, Oregon’s weekend scorcher broke many records. On Sunday, Salem hit 103 degrees, just over the city’s 100-degree record from 1945, according to the National Weather Service office in Portland. Eugene also experienced temperatures of 103, breaking the 1945 record of 98 degrees.

But some Oregonians told CNN affiliate KATU Sunday they would not miss the Portland Timbers soccer game, regardless of the heat.

“Yeah, I know it’s hot! It’s 100, it’s crazy. but the game here is greater,” Tim Hueng of Tigard, Oregon told KATU as he waited in line to enter Providence Park.

Officials are urging people to take precautions in the face of dangerously high temperatures. - Zoe Meyers/Reuters
Officials are urging people to take precautions in the face of dangerously high temperatures. – Zoe Meyers/Reuters

Even mountain destinations couldn’t beat the heat.

Reno, Nevada, saw a new daily record of 105 degrees on Sunday, the weather service office there announced. And on Monday, Reno reached 106, topping the 2017 record of 104.

And despite its elevation of just over 6,000 feet, South Lake Tahoe hit 92 degrees Sunday, beating its daily record of 88 degrees. The high temperatures continued Monday, with the city seeing 91 degrees, breaking 2017’s record of 89.

CNN’s Dalia Faheid, Monica Garrett and Brandon Miller contributed to this report.

Grim Irony: Curbing Air Pollution Is Warming the Earth Faster

Futurism

Grim Irony: Curbing Air Pollution Is Warming the Earth Faster

Frank Landymore – June 25, 2024

Cool Factor

Have industrial emissions been counteracting the worst effects of global warming? Scientists are starting to think so.

Burning coal, oil, and gas warms our planet by dispersing greenhouse gases, like CO2, into the atmosphere. And before the introduction of more stringent environmental regulations, these fuel sources would often contain deadly pollutants like sulfur oxide that contribute to the deaths of millions of people globally.

World governments have rightly fought to curb pollutants. But as a growing body evidence is beginning to show, these airborne particles, or aerosols, have likely mitigated rising temperatures by reflecting sunlight and boosting the reflectivity of clouds — and as a result, concealed just how bad global warming actually is.

The extent of the cooling they’ve caused is more contentious. Nonetheless, it’s a grim irony that exemplifies the complexities of understanding — nevermind protecting — our climate.

“We’re starting from an area of deep, deep uncertainty,” Zeke Hausfather, a climate scientist from the University of California, Berkeley, told The Washington Post. “It could be a full degree of cooling being masked.”

Abandon Ship

One of the biggest drop-offs in pollutants may come from the shipping industry, whose regulatory body in 2020 started limiting the use of the dirty, sulfur-spewing fuels its massive vessels once relied on, in favor of cleaner alternatives.

But with the resulting decrease in aerosols, recent research has shown that these cuts in shipping pollution has directly led to more solar radiation being trapped in our atmosphere, which could explain why 2023 was the hottest year on record by a margin that alarmed even scientists.

That doesn’t augur well for the future: the authors of the research suggested that as we curb these deadly pollutants, we could experience double the rate of global warming compared to the average since 1880.

As WaPo notes, however, many experts think the warming will be less pronounced, contributing somewhere between 0.05 degrees and 0.1  degrees Celsius of an uptick — which, of course, is still significantly worrying.

Clear the Air

There is, perhaps, a silver lining. The same cooling principle of these pollutants could be wielded in an experimental technique called marine cloud brightening, which would involve deliberately injecting safe aerosols into the atmosphere to cause clouds to reflect more sunlight and to increase cloud cover.

This is unproven and controversial, though, and the researchers behind the shipping study have suggested that their findings are an example of the downsides of pursuing that technique: the minute we stop pumping aerosols into the atmosphere, global temperatures will soar again, perhaps even more drastically than before.

At any rate, clarifying these gray areas will be paramount for climate scientists. The picture is more complicated than we once thought, and determining how much aerosols figure into it will be essential if humanity is to keep global warming short of even more disastrous levels.

“It’s not just a story of greenhouse gas emissions,” Robert Wood, a professor of atmospheric science at the University of Washington, told WaPo. “Whether you clean up rapidly, or whether you just fumble along with the same aerosol emissions, could be the difference of whether you cross the 2-degree Celsius threshold or not.”

Why this week’s heat wave could be next summer’s normal

The Hill

Why this week’s heat wave could be next summer’s normal

Zack Budryk – June 20, 2024

The extreme heat slamming the eastern U.S. this week may be a sign of things to come as monthly temperature records continue to give way.

A broad swath of the Midwest and eastern U.S. are currently under a heat dome, caused by a high-pressure system in the Earth’s upper atmosphere that compresses the air beneath it, making it expand into a dome shape.

Research published in March in the journal Science Advances found that since 1979, as climate change has intensified, heat waves have gotten hotter and more commonplace, and the physical area covered by heat domes has expanded as well. They’ve also slowed down by about 20 percent, leaving the people in their paths to contend with their effects longer.

“Every summer we get heat waves, and heat waves are getting more extreme and they’re getting more frequent and they’re lasting longer,” said Jonathan Overpeck, the Samuel A. Graham dean of the School for Environment and Sustainability at the University of Michigan.

In this specific heatwave, the system of warmth is moving north and east, but it’s part of a broader, more ominous pattern in which heat waves start from a warmer background, said Richard Rood, professor emeritus of climate and space science and engineering at the University of Michigan.

“The oceans have been extraordinarily warm all year, the Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico in particular,” he said. “So when summer comes and you start seeing heat waves, you’re starting from a higher temperature background.”

As heat accumulates, Rood told The Hill, one consequence is higher temperatures earlier in the year, such as this week’s heat, which began before the official start of the summer Thursday but in earlier years might be more typical of July or August.

The extreme heat patterns began in the Midwest earlier this week, and are expected to extend into the Northeast over the rest of the week. More than 76 million people were under some form of heat advisory Tuesday morning in the U.S., and about twice that number faced temperatures of more than 90 degrees. The National Weather Service projects record-breaking heat in cities like Detroit and Philadelphia as well as parts of New England this week.

Much like the heat waves of previous years in places like Europe and the Pacific Northwest, the heat is hitting regions that have little experience with such extremes, like northern New England. This means in many cases individuals are unprepared, as is broader community infrastructure of the kind that exists in historically hotter regions.

Both personal air conditioning and resources like cooling centers are “still inadequate in a lot of areas in the U.S. where access to air conditioning hasn’t been historically needed,” said Amy Bailey, director of climate resilience and sustainability at the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions.

“Our infrastructure, our institutions and daily practices aren’t well-suited for these long stretches of extreme heat, and the longer it takes us to catch up the more lives are on the line,” Bailey added.

It also demonstrates “the criticality of having a grid that is resistant to extreme weather,” she added.

Overpeck said much of the extreme heat is attributable to the impact of climate change, but El Niño has also been a factor, and “we expect — hope might be a better word — that temperatures might start to ameliorate.”

The most recent El Niño, a climate phenomenon that causes unusually warm surface temperatures in the Pacific Ocean, began last June, which was also the warmest June on record.

The globe saw its overall hottest summer on record the same year and recently concluded a 12-month period in which every month set a temperature record.

“We’re really looking at the next few months to tell us whether something dramatic is surprising us in the global temperatures,” Overpeck said. “If it starts cooling off, [and] it hasn’t started to do that yet, we can ascribe [these] more unusual temperatures to the El Niño. If it keeps rocketing up, we’ll have to think about why climate change [is] accelerating.”

He noted that surface warming of oceans, where the majority of the heat trapped by greenhouse gases goes, has also accelerated lately.

While local authorities have urged people in affected areas to stay inside where possible, that is not an option for those who work outdoors or the homeless population of major metropolitan areas, Overpeck noted.

The temperatures of this week are likely to subside somewhat while remaining high throughout the summer, but ultimately they may be a vision of what summers look like in the longer term, Rood said. This week is almost certainly not a “one-off event,” he added. “We are probably going to see a series of events this summer.”

“I wouldn’t call it a new normal — I would call it perhaps a vision of 10, 20, 30 years,” he said. If the trend continues, he added, the extremes of this week won’t seem extraordinary years from now.

“You’re getting a glimpse into the future, warmer world,” he said.

Extreme heat, wildfires and climate change are causing Canadians to feel heightened sense of eco anxiety: ‘How are we going to live?’

Yahoo! Style

Extreme heat, wildfires and climate change are causing Canadians to feel heightened sense of eco anxiety: ‘How are we going to live?’

Climate anxiety, ecological grief and solastalgia are terms used to describe the emotional distress caused by environmental changes.

Pia Araneta – June 19, 2024

This article is for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Contact a qualified medical professional before engaging in any physical activity, or making any changes to your diet, medication or lifestyle.

FORT NELSON, BRITISH COLUMBIA, CANADA - MAY 14: Smoke rises after fire erupts in Western Canada on May 14, 2024. Wildfires in Western Canada prompted thousands to flee their homes, while 66,000 were on standby to evacuate as a fast-moving blaze threatened another community Saturday. A growing wildfire moved relentlessly toward Fort Nelson, British Columbia (B.C.), resulting in officials ordering more than 3,000 to leave their homes in Fort Nelson and nearby Fort Nelson First Nation.Within five hours, the fire had grown to 8 square kilometers. (3 square miles) from a modest half square kilometer.Tinder dry conditions and flames fanned by powerful winds caused the wildfire to spread and prompted the evacuation order, which was issued at 7.30 p.m. (Photo by Cheyenne Berreault/Anadolu via Getty Images) climate fears
As wildfires continue to burn across the country, Canadians are sharing their climate fears. (Photo by Cheyenne Berreault/Anadolu via Getty Images)

Annie Malik, a 33-year-old living in London, Ont., often feels anxious or overwhelmed by the environmental state of the planet: Heatwaves in Pakistan — where she’s from — heat warnings and record-breaking temperatures in the summer coupled with mild winters in Canada and air pollution from wildfires that are becoming more common during the summer months.

“What is going to happen to the world? If the planet is inhabitable, how are we going to live?” said Malik.

Her family still resides in Pakistan, where air conditioning units are a luxury amid soaring temperatures and a spike in heat-related illnesses.

“There’s no way I can go back during the summers because I can’t handle the heat…People are dying every day in the summer,” said Malik, adding that she worries for her family.

Annie Malik, a 33-year-old living in London, Ont. said her biggest worry around climate change is her family in Pakistan. She can no longer visit during the hot summer months and she thinks about her family's survival. (Image provided by Annie Malik)
Annie Malik, a 33-year-old living in London, Ont. said her biggest worry around climate change is her family in Pakistan. She can no longer visit during the hot summer months and she thinks about her family’s survival. (Image provided by Annie Malik)

Malik’s sentiments are echoed by many Canadians who are feeling eco-anxious, or emotional from the effects of climate change, especially since last year’s record-breaking wildfires. According to a 2023 survey by Unite For Change, 75 per cent of Canadians are experiencing anxiety about climate change and its impacts.

If the planet is inhabitable, how are we going to live?Annie Malik

Yahoo Canada recently spoke to Canadians about their eco-anxiety, as well as a mental health expert on how to cope.


What is climate anxiety?

Climate anxietyecological grief and solastalgia are all similar terms to describe the emotional distress caused by environmental changes. The American Psychological Association defines it as “a chronic fear of environmental doom” and recognizes it as a legitimate increasing mental health concern.

Cree Lambeck, clinical director at Cherry Tree Counselling, offers eco-counselling services and said some clients can present with both physical and mental health symptoms from ecological issues. For example, someone might struggle with asthma and breathing issues from air pollution. “Other times a person can feel stress or really powerless around climate change,” said Lambeck.


What are the signs & symptoms of climate anxiety?

According to the Mental Health Commission of Canada, symptoms of eco-anxiety can include:

  • Feelings of depression, anxiety or panic
  • Grief and sadness over the loss of natural environments
  • Existential dread
  • Guilt related to your carbon footprint
  • Anger or frustration toward government officials
  • Obsessive thoughts about the climate

How to cope with climate anxiety

Heather Mak is a 42-year-old from Toronto who said she’s felt eco-anxious for well over a decade, which “can feel overwhelming.”

Mak transitioned out of a marketing career into the sustainability field, hoping she could take control of some of her anxieties. She’s currently in corporate sustainability, working with large businesses on environmental and social issues, and she runs a nonprofit called Diversity in Sustainability.

Heather Mak is a 42-year-old living in Toronto and she changed careers from marketing to sustainability. Mak said taking action in her work helps her cope with her eco-anxiety, but a side effect is that she can get burnt out from ongoing crises. (Image provided by Heather Mak)
Heather Mak is a 42-year-old living in Toronto and she changed careers from marketing to sustainability. Mak said taking action in her work helps her cope with her eco-anxiety, but a side effect is that she can get burnt out from ongoing crises. (Image provided by Heather Mak)

“How I try to deal with it is by taking action,” she said. “But then again, when you start working in this field, it’s almost like you can never sleep — because the scope of the issue just keeps getting bigger.”

How I try to deal with it is by taking action. Heather Mak

Last year, Mak heard about the Climate Psychology Alliance and started seeing a climate-aware psychologist to help her process some of her feelings from eco-anxiety, as well as burnout from her work.

As recommended by her psychologist, Mak tries to immerse herself in nature as much as possible to keep herself grounded. “There’s also groups called climate cafes,” said Mak. “I think just chatting with others who are going through the same thing really helps.”

Other times, Mak will channel her energy into writing letters to elected officials.


Set boundaries and concrete strategies: Expert

At Cherry Tree Counselling, Lambeck offers clients “walk and talk ecotherapy.” The sessions can be in-person or over the phone and both the therapist and client will chat outdoors.

Lambeck said many people access eco-counselling services, from adolescents to seniors. “People can experience [climate anxiety] throughout their lifespan and it can present in different ways — like with parenting,” said Lambeck. Some research has found that young adults are even hesitant to have kids due to climate change. “There’s a lot of existential worry associated with global crises.”

It’s important to take breaks and set those boundaries and practice self-care and find social support in those times.Cree Lambeck, clinical director at Cherry Tree Counselling

Considering environmental issues can impact many prongs in someone’s life, like family planning or lifestyle choices, Lambeck said she tries to offer clients practical tools and concrete strategies that might help tackle some of the turmoil. For instance, she might help target some ways a person can reduce their carbon footprint, identify some of their core values, or try to find opportunities or sustainable initiatives the person might be able to participate in.

“For some people, this can help provide a sense of empowerment or control if they’re feeling helpless. Engaging in meaning-focused coping and finding purpose,” Lambeck said.

Another strategy is to focus on boundary setting or limit the exposure of distressing news. “What is the balance between staying informed or excess consumption?” Lambeck said. Images of burning forests, oil spills and floods are plentiful and distressing and can exacerbate our eco-anxiety. “So it’s important to take breaks and set those boundaries and practice self-care and find social support in those times,” she adds.

Alito’s Wife Caught on Tape Spewing Venom at Everyone

The New Republic – Opinion

Alito’s Wife Caught on Tape Spewing Venom at Everyone

Edith Olmsted – June 11, 2024

A secret tape has exposed what Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito’s wife, Martha-Ann, really thinks behind closed doors—and the truth isn’t pretty. In the span of just a few minutes, Alito promised revenge on the media, flung around terms like “femnazis,” lauded her German heritage, and went off about Pride flags. It was a mess.

Alito has been in and out of the news in the last month, after her high-ranking husband blamed her for hanging an upside-down American flag outside of their home, a symbol favored by the “Stop the Steal” movement following the 2020 presidential election. She supposedly hung the flag in response to a neighbor’s “F— Trump” sign, which sparked the rather unneighborly spat. Alito also engaged in some light menacing as part of the feud, prompting the neighbor to call the cops on the Alitos. Still, Justice Alito has refused calls to recuse himself from cases relating to the January 6 insurrection.

Journalist Laura Windsor recorded Martha-Ann’s and her husband’s comments during the Supreme Court Historical Society’s annual dinner earlier this month. A copy of the tape was published on Monday by Rolling Stone.

Windsor first approached Martha-Ann, posing as a Christian conservative, to express her sympathy over “everything that you’re going through,” referring to the highly publicized flag hanging.

“It’s OK because if they come back to me, I’ll get them,” Alito said cheerfully. “I’m gonna be liberated and I’m gonna get them.”

“What do you mean by ‘they?’” Windsor asked.

“There is a five-year defamation statute of limitations,” Alito said, letting out a laugh.

“I don’t know what you mean by ‘they’, like by ‘get them’?” Windsor pressed.

“The media!” Alito said, going on to complain about her coverage in The Washington Post style section from nearly two decades ago.

It appears Alito doesn’t forget about the journalists who’ve gotten on her bad side. In 2016, Alito was reportedly enthusiastic about Trump’s promise to expand U.S. libel laws to make it significantly easier to sue news outlets for their coverage, one GOP operative told Rolling Stone.

While maintaining her cheerful tone, Alito also took aim at any woman who suggested her husband should’ve prevented her from hanging an “Appeal to Heaven” flag, a symbol revived by a Christian nationalist sect and favored by January 6 insurrectionists, at their vacation home.

“The other thing the femnazis believe, that he should control me,” Alito said about her husband. “So, they’ll go to hell. He never controls me.”

When Windsor asked what someone who has the same flag should do, Alito responded simply, “Don’t get angry, get even.”

There was one group that Alito seemed to admire, and it’s not exactly one that people are often openly praising. “Look at me, look at me. I’m German, from Germany. My heritage is German. You come after me. I’m gonna give it back to you. And there will be a way, it doesn’t have to be now, but there will be a way they will know. Don’t worry about it,” she said.

When Windsor tried to ask Alito about the political divide in the United States and her thoughts on the “radical Left,” about which her supposedly nonpolitical husband had plenty to say, Alito cut her off to complain about Pride flags.

“You know what I want? I want a Sacred Heart of Jesus flag because I have to look across the lagoon at the Pride flag for the next month,” she said.

“And he’s like, ‘Oh please, don’t put up a flag.’ I said, ‘I won’t do it because I’m deferring to you. But when you are free of this nonsense I’m putting it up, and I’m gonna send them a message every day. Maybe every week I’ll be changing the flags. They’ll be all kinds,’” she said, fantasizing about the day when she could finally antagonize her neighbors who support the LGBTQ+ community.

Alito even explained she had invented a flag that says, “Vergogna,” which means “shame” in Italian. “Shame, shame, shame on you,” Alito added darkly.

One can scarcely believe that her husband ruled in favor of allowing businesses to discriminate against people who identify as LGBTQ+.