Some people just love criminals: Timothy Mellon, Secretive Donor, Gives $50 Million to Pro-Trump Group

Timothy Mellon, Secretive Donor, Gives $50 Million to Pro-Trump Group

The cash from Mr. Mellon, a reclusive billionaire who has also been a major donor to a super PAC supporting Robert F. Kennedy Jr., is among the largest single disclosed gifts ever.

By Shane Goldmacher and Theodore Schleifer – June 20, 2024

Former President Donald J. Trump, speaking on a stage behind a lectern and in a blue suit and yellow tie, facing left.
Former President Donald J. Trump and his allies have been working to close the financial gap with President Biden. Credit…Ash Ponders for The New York Times

Timothy Mellon, a reclusive heir to a Gilded Age fortune, donated $50 million to a super PAC supporting Donald J. Trump the day after the former president was convicted of 34 felonies, according to new federal filings, an enormous gift that is among the largest single disclosed contributions ever.

The donation’s impact on the 2024 race is expected to be felt almost immediately. Within days of the contribution, the pro-Trump super PAC, Make America Great Again Inc., said in a memo that it would begin reserving $100 million in advertising through Labor Day.

The group had only $34.5 million on hand at the end of April, and Mr. Mellon’s contribution accounted for much of the nearly $70 million that the super PAC raised in May. On Wednesday and Thursday, the super PAC began reserving $30 million in ads to air in Georgia and Pennsylvania around the Fourth of July holiday.

Mr. Mellon is now the first donor to give $100 million in disclosed federal contributions in this year’s election. He was already the single largest contributor to super PACs supporting both Mr. Trump and Robert F. Kennedy Jr., who is running as an independent. Mr. Mellon has previously given $25 million to both.

Democrats have sought to portray Mr. Kennedy as a spoiler supported by Republicans, in part by emphasizing Mr. Mellon’s dual contributions and seemingly split loyalties. The pro-Kennedy super PAC has distributed quotations from the hard-to-reach Mr. Mellon, and for a blurb that appears on the cover of Mr. Mellon’s upcoming book, Mr. Kennedy called the billionaire a “maverick entrepreneur.”

It is not clear what Mr. Mellon’s mega-donation means for his support of Mr. Kennedy going forward. He has so far toggled between giving to support both candidates. His most recent donation to Mr. Kennedy’s super PAC was a $5 million contribution in April.

But Mr. Mellon’s $50 million gift will significantly help pro-Trump forces narrow the financial advantage that President Biden and his allies have enjoyed so far. Miriam Adelson, the casino billionaire and widow of Sheldon G. Adelson, who died in 2021, has also made plans to fund a pro-Trump super PAC with at least as much money as the $90 million that her family gave in the 2020 campaign, although much of the cash has yet to arrive.

Richard and Elizabeth Uihlein, the Illinois couple who are among the G.O.P.’s largest donors, each gave $5 million to the Trump super PAC in May. The billionaire energy executive Kelcy Warren also gave $5 million.

But outside groups supporting Mr. Biden have already announced more than $1 billion in planned spending, anchored by a reserved $250 million in advertising from the leading pro-Biden super PAC, Future Forward.

Individual donations as large as $50 million are rare in American campaigns. Other gifts of a similar size have come from candidates who self-funded their campaigns, from couples who technically split their mammoth contributions or from donors who have paid in installments over time.

Until now, Make America Great Again Inc., which serves as the leading pro-Trump super PAC, has had only modest fund-raising success, relying largely on Republican donors who have personal connections to the former president.

In the first few months of 2024, the group raised between $7.4 million and $14.4 million a month. MAGA Inc. was originally seeded with $60 million by Mr. Trump’s political action committee — which is prohibited from spending to support his candidacy — before he declared his run for president. But in a highly unusual transaction, Mr. Trump later asked for a refund of the $60 million he had given months earlier, so MAGA Inc. has now returned that amount to the PAC, Save America, which is helping pay his legal bills.

Mr. Mellon, who had previously put $25 million into the group over the last 12 months, now accounts for nearly half of what the group has raised in total.

Mr. Mellon has long avoided the publicity that typically surrounds a donor this significant. After bursting onto the Republican fund-raising scene at the dawn of the Trump administration, he quickly developed a reputation as an unusual, quirky figure.

Despite his famous last name — he is the grandson of former Treasury Secretary Andrew Mellon and a member of the wealthy Mellon family — Republican fund-raisers had largely not heard of him before he made a $10 million donation to a G.O.P. super PAC in mid-2018. That gift was the first of nine eight-figure checks that he would cut to major Republican groups.

He would go on to hire political counsel to guide him in Washington, although he lives primarily in Wyoming these days. Few recipients of his money have even met him.

The $50 million check to support Mr. Trump is matched only by a different donation Mr. Mellon made on behalf of another tough-on-immigration political project: the private construction of a border wall in Texas. In August 2021, Mr. Mellon donated $53 million worth of stock to help pay for the wall, a priority of Gov. Greg Abbott of Texas.

Mr. Mellon, who did not respond to requests for comment on Thursday, appears to be growing more comfortable with the scrutiny of his influence. Next month, he is slated to publish a book, “panam.captain,” about his work turning around Pan Am Systems, a collection of companies that includes rail, aviation and marketing firms.

Mr. Mellon originally self-published an autobiography, but it was taken off-line in 2016 after some incendiary passages became public, including a line that Black people were “even more belligerent” after social programs were expanded in the 1960s and ’70s.

Mr. Mellon also wrote that social safety net programs amounted to “slavery redux.”

“For delivering their votes in the Federal Elections, they are awarded with yet more and more freebies: food stamps, cellphones, WIC payments, Obamacare, and on, and on,” Mr. Mellon wrote, according to The Washington Post.

The new book, “panam.captain,” will be released by Skyhorse Publishing. Its president is Tony Lyons, who co-founded the pro-Kennedy super PAC, American Values 2024.

In a rare interview with Bloomberg in 2020, Mr. Mellon praised what he saw as Mr. Trump’s follow-through: “He’s done the things he promised to, or tried to do the things he’s promised to,” he said.

Extreme heat kills hundreds, millions more sweltering worldwide as summer begins

Reuters

Extreme heat kills hundreds, millions more sweltering worldwide as summer begins

Gloria Dickie – June 20, 2024

LONDON (Reuters) -Deadly heatwaves are scorching cities on four continents as the Northern Hemisphere marks the first day of summer, a sign that climate change may again help to fuel record-breaking heat that could surpass last summer as the warmest in 2,000 years.

Record temperatures in recent days are suspected to have caused hundreds, if not thousands, of deaths across Asia and Europe.

In Saudi Arabia, nearly two million Muslim pilgrims are finishing the haj at the Grand Mosque in Mecca this week. But hundreds have died during the journey amid temperatures above 51 degrees Celsius (124 degrees Fahrenheit), according to reports from foreign authorities.

Egyptian medical and security sources told Reuters on Thursday that at least 530 Egyptians had died while participating – up from 307 reported as of yesterday. Another 40 remain missing.

Countries around the Mediterranean have also endured another week of blistering high temperatures that have contributed to forest fires from Portugal to Greece and along the northern coast of Africa in Algeria, according to the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Earth Observatory.

In Serbia, meteorologists forecast temperatures of around 40 C (104 F) this week as winds from North Africa propelled a hot front across the Balkans. Health authorities declared a red weather alert and advised people not to venture outdoors.

Belgrade’s emergency service said its doctors intervened 109 times overnight to treat people with heart and chronic health conditions.

In neighbouring Montenegro, where health authorities also warned people to stay in the shade until late afternoon, tens of thousands of tourists sought refreshment on the beaches along its Adriatic coast.

Europe this year has been contending with a spate of dead and missing tourists amid dangerous heat. A 55-year-old American was found dead on the Greek island of Mathraki, police said on Monday – the third such tourist death in a week.

A broad swath of the eastern U.S. was also wilting for a fourth consecutive day under a heat dome, a phenomenon that occurs when a strong, high-pressure system traps hot air over a region, preventing cool air from getting in and causing ground temperatures to remain high.

New York City opened emergency cooling centres in libraries, senior centers and other facilities. While the city’s schools were operating normally, a number of districts in the surrounding suburbs sent students home early to avoid the heat.

Meteorological authorities also issued an excessive heat warning for parts of the U.S. state of Arizona, including Phoenix, on Thursday, with temperatures expected to reach 45.5 C (114 F).

In the nearby state of New Mexico, a pair of fast-moving wildfires abetted by the blistering heat have killed two people, burned more than 23,000 acres and destroyed 500 homes, according to authorities. Heavy rains could help temper the blazes, but thunderstorms on Thursday were also causing flash flooding and complicating firefighting efforts.

All told, nearly 100 million Americans were under extreme heat advisories, watches and warnings on Thursday, according to the federal government’s National Integrated Heat Health Information System.

The brutal temperatures should begin easing in New England on Friday, the weather service said, but New York and the mid-Atlantic states will continue to endure near-record heat into the weekend.

COUNTING THE DEAD

India’s summer period lasts from March to May, when monsoons begin slowly sweeping across the country and breaking the heat.

But New Delhi on Wednesday registered its warmest night in at least 55 years, with India’s Safdarjung Observatory reporting a temperature of 35.2 C (95.4 F) at 1 a.m.

Temperatures normally drop at night, but scientists say climate change is causing nighttime temperatures to rise. In many parts of the world, nights are warming faster than days, according to a 2020 study by the University of Exeter.

New Delhi has clocked 38 consecutive days with maximum temperatures at or above 40 C (104 F) since May 14, according to weather department data.

An official at the Indian health ministry said on Wednesday there were more than 40,000 suspected heatstroke cases and at least 110 confirmed deaths between March 1 and June 18, when northwest and eastern India recorded twice the usual number of heatwave days in one of the country’s longest such spells.

Gaining accurate death tolls from heatwaves, however, is difficult. Most health authorities do not attribute deaths to heat, but rather the illnesses exacerbated by high temperatures, such as cardiovascular issues. Authorities therefore undercount heat-related deaths by a significant margin – typically overlooking thousands if not tens of thousands of deaths.

RECORD WARM TEMPERATURES

The heatwaves are occurring against a backdrop of 12 consecutive months that have ranked as the warmest on record in year-on-year comparisons, according to the European Union’s climate change monitoring service.

The World Meteorological Organization says there is an 86% percent chance that one of the next five years will eclipse 2023 to become the warmest on record.

While overall global temperatures have risen by nearly 1.3 C (2.3 F) above pre-industrial levels, climate change is fuelling more extreme temperature peaks – making heatwaves more common, more intense and longer-lasting.

On average globally, a heatwave that would have occurred once in 10 years in the pre-industrial climate will now occur 2.8 times over 10 years, and it will be 1.2 C warmer, according to an international team of scientists with the World Weather Attribution (WWA) group.

Scientists say heatwaves will continue to intensify if the world continues to unleash climate-warming emissions from the burning of fossil fuels.

If the world hits 2 C (3.6 F) of global warming, heatwaves would on average occur 5.6 times in 10 years and be 2.6 C (4.7 F) hotter, according to the WWA.

(Reporting by Gloria Dickie in London; additional reporting by Aleksandar Vasovic in Belgrade, Pesha Magid in Riyadh, Shivam Patel in Delhi, Ahmed Mohamed Hassan in Cairo, Ali Withers in Copenhagen and Joseph Ax in New York; editing by Mark Heinrich and Josie Kao)

What is a heat dome? Is SC in a heat dome? What to know about ‘ring of fire’ thunderstorms.

Greenville News

What is a heat dome? Is SC in a heat dome? What to know about ‘ring of fire’ thunderstorms.

Nina Tran, Greenville News – June 20, 2024

A heat wave is a period of unusually high temperatures over a region. As temperatures cook on the Midwest and Northeastern coast, the term “heat dome” has been used to describe the hot weather, leaving many questions to be answered.

The National Weather Service (NWS) has issued a hazardous weather outlook from Friday, June 21 through Wednesday, June 26 for Northeast Georgia, the North Carolina foothills and Piedmont, and Upstate South Carolina.

High temperatures are forecast to reach the mid 90s Saturday through Monday, with heat indices expected to reach 100 to 104 degrees. Those who are sensitive to the heat will want to decrease their time spent outdoors to prevent heat-related illnesses.

Here’s what to know about the heat dome and how you and your family can stay safe in it.

What is a heat dome?

Per AccuWeather, the term “heat dome” is used to describe a sprawling area of high pressure promoting hot and dry conditions for days or weeks at a time. It is similar to a balloon in the way it expands and contracts as the day goes on. When a certain area is inside it, it can feel very warm. A heat dome can interfere with the production of clouds, leading to an increase in sunlight and high temperatures. In turn, the cooling demand will increase, which may boost the strain on a region’s power grid. Drought conditions may also develop due to extended dry and hot spells.

More: It’s getting hot out: Here are the best settings for your air conditioner in South Carolina

What are ‘ring of fire’ thunderstorms?

Since heat domes act as large, immovable bubbles, moisture is forced up and over the heat bubble, according to AccuWeather. This causes “ring of fire” thunderstorms to form along the fringes of heat, which may bring severe weather into the area.

“Let’s say, for example, you had a big high pressure over the Southern Plains, Texas, or Oklahoma. What will happen is, on the northern fringes of higher pressure, you’ll get these periods of thunderstorms that develop, maybe over the Central Plains. It will move around the periphery of that high pressure, which tends to be in kind of a circular shape, hence the ring terminology to it.” said Thomas Winesett with the NWS at Greenville-Spartanburg International Airport.

Ring of fire features are currently favorable for the Midwest and parts of the Ohio Valley due to centered high pressure activity in both areas. As the heat dome ensues, will South Carolina also get a chance for severe weather?

“That’s not to say we can’t get some thunderstorms, but it won’t be the true ring of fire type storms maybe until later, later next week if that high pressure shifts back off to the west or Texas, New Mexico.” Winesett said. “So when that happens, that might allow us to get into a more active pattern where we see those ring of fire type storms maybe coming more out of the Mississippi Valley and Tennessee Valley and towards the Appalachia.”

People leave the beach beach at Phipps Ocean Park as a thunderstorm approaches July 7, 2023 in Palm Beach. The national weather service issued a heat advisory for Palm Beach County with a high near 94 degrees and heat index from 108 to 112.
People leave the beach beach at Phipps Ocean Park as a thunderstorm approaches July 7, 2023 in Palm Beach. The national weather service issued a heat advisory for Palm Beach County with a high near 94 degrees and heat index from 108 to 112.
When will the heat dome end?

Doug Outlaw with the NWS at GSP said he hopes current weather conditions do not stick around for too much longer, especially with the reestablishment of high temperatures next weekend. Next Friday’s heat will bump down a few degrees before temperatures continue to soar. The timing of a cool down period remains uncertain.

“It is typical to have heat waves on and off during the summer, but we hope that the weather doesn’t get stuck and we end up way up in the 90s every day for weeks,” he said. “But we’ve got to be prepared for the possibility of something like that.”

Outlaw forecast the following high temperatures for Greenville heading into next week:

∎ Friday, June 21: 91 degrees

∎ Saturday, June 22: 93 degrees

∎ Sunday, June 23: 94 degrees

∎ Monday, June 24: 95 degrees

∎ Tuesday, June 25: 95 degrees

∎ Wednesday, June 26: 96 degrees

∎ Thursday, June 27: 95 degrees

A child stands at a fountain in Georgetown Waterfront Park amid a heat wave in Washington, June 19, 2024.
A child stands at a fountain in Georgetown Waterfront Park amid a heat wave in Washington, June 19, 2024.
Types of heat warnings issued by the National Weather Service

The NWS issues several types of heat advisories depending on severity. The different types are as follows:

∎ Excessive heat warning: This warning is issued 12 hours of the onset of extremely dangerous heat conditions. When the maximum heat index temperature is expected to reach 105 or higher for at least two days and the nighttime temperature will not drop below 75, the warning is issued. This rule may vary across the country, especially for areas not used to extreme heat conditions. Precautions should be taken immediately during extreme conditions to prevent serious illness and even death.

∎ Excessive heat watch: A watch is issued when an excessive heat event is favorable within the next 24 to 72 hours. When the risk of a heat wave has increased but the occurrence and timing is uncertain, a watch is issued.

∎ Heat advisory: An advisory is issued within 12 hours of the onset of extremely dangerous heat conditions. When the maximum heat index temperature is anticipated to be 100 degrees or higher for at least two days and the nighttime temperature will not drop below 75 degrees, an advisory is issued. This rule may vary across the country, especially for areas not used to extreme heat conditions. Precautions should be taken immediately during extreme conditions to prevent serious illness and even death.

∎ Excessive heat outlook: An outlook is issued when there is a potential risk for an excessive heat event within the next 3-7 days, providing information for those who need considerable lead-time to prepare for the event.

People cool off at the lakefront as temperatures climbed above 90 degrees Fahrenheit on June 19, 2024 in Chicago. A heat wave has brought record warm temperatures to much of the Midwest and Northeast areas of the country this week.
People cool off at the lakefront as temperatures climbed above 90 degrees Fahrenheit on June 19, 2024 in Chicago. A heat wave has brought record warm temperatures to much of the Midwest and Northeast areas of the country this week.
High temperatures forecast across US Midwest, Northeast

These are the high temperatures forecast for several Midwest and Northeast cities from Juneteenth and June 20. Temperatures will dip between this week and early next week, according to a USA TODAY story:

∎ Manchester, New Hampshire: 97, 99. Dropping to 86 by June 24.

∎ Albany, New York: 96, 97. Dropping to 86 by June 24.

∎ Detroit, Michigan: 95, 93. Dropping to 83 by June 24.

∎ Toledo, Ohio: 94, 96. Dropping to 84 by June 24.

∎ Indianapolis, Indiana: 92, 95. Jumping to 96 by Saturday, June 22 before dropping to 97 on June 24.

∎ Caribou, Maine: 96, 95. Dropping to 76 by June 24.

∎ Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: 94, 95. Jumping to 100 by Friday, June 21 before dropping to 90 on June 24.

∎ Boston, Massachusetts: 95, 97. Dropping to 85 by June 24.

∎ Washington, D.C.: 90, 92. Jumping to 98 by Saturday June 22 before dropping slightly to 93 on June 24.

Mayflower Beach in Dennis fills up on a hot weekday morning, June 20, 2024, as beachgoers seek relief from the heat. The Town of Dennis has announced a new plan to deal with beach crowding there on July 4. 
Steve Heaslip/Cape Cod Times
Mayflower Beach in Dennis fills up on a hot weekday morning, June 20, 2024, as beachgoers seek relief from the heat. The Town of Dennis has announced a new plan to deal with beach crowding there on July 4. Steve Heaslip/Cape Cod Times
How to prepare for the heat

Tips from NOAA:

∎ Make sure the air conditioner is functioning properly. If your home does not have air conditioning or loses power, visit a designated cooling shelter or other air-conditioned location such as the mall or public library.

∎ Check on friends, families, neighbors, and pets to ensure they are safe in the heat. It is important to check on those who live alone or do not have air conditioning.

∎ Never leave children, dependents, or pets unattended in vehicles. The sun can heat the inside of the car to deadly temperatures in minutes.

∎ Wear loose clothing that is light-colored and covers the skin.

∎ Hydrate with water throughout the day, avoiding caffeine and sugary beverages.

∎ Set aside one gallon of drinking water per person a day in case of a power outage.

∎ Keep out of the sun and stay indoors on the lowest level. Curtains and shades should be closed.

∎ Immerse yourself in a cool bath or shower. Cooling your feet off in water can also help.

∎ If temperatures are cool at night, let the cool air in by opening windows.

∎ If you are outside, stay in the shade. Apply sunblock and wear a wide-brimmed hat before going outside.

∎ To avoid heat exhaustion, do not engage in strenuous activities. Use a buddy system and take breaks in the shade when working in extreme heat.

∎ For critical updates from the National Weather Service (NWS), tune into NOAA Weather Radio.

For more heat safety information, visit weather.gov/heat or heat.gov.

Nina Tran covers trending topics for The Greenville News. Reach her via email at ntran@gannett.com

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.

Why some scientists think extreme heat could be the reason people keep disappearing in Greece

CNN

Why some scientists think extreme heat could be the reason people keep disappearing in Greece

Laura Paddison, CNN – June 19, 2024

It was a shock when Michael Mosley, a doctor and well-known TV presenter in the UK, was found dead earlier this month after hiking in scorching temperatures on the Greek island of Symi.

But it is now one of a series of tourist deaths and disappearances in Greece as the country endures a powerful, early summer heat wave with temperatures pushing above 40 degrees Celsius (104 degrees Fahrenheit).

On Saturday, a Dutch tourist was found dead on the island of Samos. The following day, the body of an American tourist was found on Mathraki, a small island west of Corfu. Albert Calibet, another American tourist, has been missing since he set out for a hike on June 11 on Amorgos. And two French women disappeared on Sikinos after going for a walk.

The bodies of those who died still need to be examined to establish the precise cause of death, but authorities are warning people not to underestimate the impacts of the searing temperatures.

“There is a common pattern,” Petros Vassilakis, the police spokesman for the Southern Aegean, told Reuters, “they all went for a hike amid high temperatures.”

Some scientists say what’s happening in Greece offers a warning sign about the impacts of extreme heat on the body, and in particular the brain, potentially causing confusion, affecting people’s decision-making abilities and even their perception of risk.

As climate change fuels longer and more severe heat waves, scientists are trying to unravel how our brains will cope.

The brain is ‘the master switch’

Research has traditionally focused on the impact of extreme heat on muscles, skin, the lungs and the heart, but “the brain, for me, is the key to it all,” said Damian Bailey, a physiology and biochemistry professor at the University of South Wales. It’s the “master switch” for the body, he told CNN.

It’s in the brain that body temperature is regulated. The hypothalamus, a small diamond-shape structure, acts as a thermostat. It performs a delicate dance to keep the body’s internal temperature at or very close to 37 degrees Celsius (98.6 Fahrenheit). When it’s hot, the hypothalamus activates the sweat glands and widens blood vessels to cool the body down.

But the brain functions well within a narrow range of temperatures and even small changes can affect it. Many people will be familiar with a feeling of slowness and laziness on a warm summer’s day.

But as heat increases, it can have serious effects, including lowering the fluids in the body and decreasing blood flow to the brain, Bailey said. He compares the brain to a Hummer — it needs vast resources to function.

Tests he has run on research participants in an environmental chamber, where he cranked temperatures up from 21 to 40 degrees Celsius (around 70 to 104 Fahrenheit), showed a drop in blood flow to the brain by about 9% to 10%.

“That is a big deal in terms of not getting enough fuel into an engine which is running at high end all of the time,” Bailey said.

Jeff Nerby, with Arrow-Crete Construction, on a hot and humid day while working in Milwaukee, Wisconsin on June 17, 2024. - Mike De Sisti/The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel/USA Today Network/Reuters
Jeff Nerby, with Arrow-Crete Construction, on a hot and humid day while working in Milwaukee, Wisconsin on June 17, 2024. – Mike De Sisti/The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel/USA Today Network/Reuters

And it has an impact. Extreme heat can disrupt typical brain activity, said Kim Meidenbauer, a neuroscientist at Washington State University. The brain networks that usually allow people to think clearly, to reason, to remember, and to construct and formulate ideas, can get “thrown out of whack,” she told CNN.

It gets harder to make complex decisions, such as which path to take on a hike — a decision that sounds simple but requires weighing multiple different factors.

There’s also evidence to suggest people are more likely to make risky decisions and engage in impulsive behavior when they’re exposed to heat, she added.

An altered perception of risk coupled with impaired cognitive function can have very serious consequences. “You’re not just talking about potentially getting a little bit too warm and maybe having a sunburn,” she said. “You’re talking about potentially life-threatening (situations), like making poor decisions, having your judgement clouded.”

Scientists are only just beginning to unravel the range of impacts heat has on the brain, not just in terms of decision-making but mood, emotions and mental health.

“Our understanding is really pretty minimal,” Meidenbauer said. “It’s a major unknown at this point.”

Who is vulnerable?

Some people are more vulnerable to heat than others. Older people, especially those over 65, are more at risk, because their bodies don’t always thermoregulate as well. The people who have gone missing in Greece were all in their mid-50s and older.

Very young children and pregnant women also face elevated risk, as do those with pre-existing conditions, including mental health conditions.

But heat can be dangerous for anyone.

In 2016, a team of scientists followed 44 college students during a heat wave in Boston and found those without air conditioning experienced significant declines in cognitive performance.

“No one is immune to the health effects of heat,” said Jose Guillermo Cedeño Laurent, one of the research authors and an assistant professor at the Rutgers School of Public Health. “Our brain is an exquisitely sensitive organ,” he said.

Someone who is very fit understands the dangers and carries plenty of water is still gambling if they decide to go on a hike in very high temperatures, Bailey said.

“You make wrong decisions and it can cost you your life.”

How to protect yourself

There are behavioral things people can do to protect themselves and lower risk, experts say.

These include not exercising during the hottest parts of the day, instead going in the coolest parts of the day and seeking shade when possible. Wearing loose clothing and applying ice packs to the head and neck can also help.

Drinking water is vital and not just when you feel very thirsty, Bailey said. It’s important not to get to a point where the body is losing fluids faster than it can take them on. Experts also recommend electrolyte drinks, which can help replace some of the fluids lost through sweating.

Ethan Hickman takes a break from unloading a trailer of fireworks in Weldon Spring, Missouri, on June 17, 2024. - Jeff Roberson/AP
Ethan Hickman takes a break from unloading a trailer of fireworks in Weldon Spring, Missouri, on June 17, 2024. – Jeff Roberson/AP

Use location-sharing apps, said Meidenbauer. “Make sure someone knows where you are.”

Over the long term, regular exercise is important — providing it’s not outside during the hottest parts of the day — as it can help the body thermoregulate. “The fitter you are the more resilient you are to these climatic environmental stresses,” Bailey said.

It will take time to unravel the exact causes of death of those who lost their lives in Greece but there is a lesson that can still be taken away from the tragedies, Bailey said.

“No matter how intelligent or how fit you might think you are … if you’re going out in 40 degrees celsius plus temperatures, even if you’re well prepared, you’re running the gauntlet.”

CNN’s Stephanie Halasz and Issy Ronald contributed to this report.

Earth’s rotating inner core is starting to slow down — and it could alter the length of our days

Live Science

Earth’s rotating inner core is starting to slow down — and it could alter the length of our days

Harry Baker – June 19, 2024

 The Earth's layers arranged like a Russian nesting doll in outer space.
Credit: Shutterstock

The heart of our planet has been spinning unusually slowly for the past 14 years, new research confirms. And if this mysterious trend continues, it could potentially lengthen Earth’s days — though the effects would likely be imperceptible to us.

Earth’s inner core is a roughly moon-size chunk of solid iron and nickel that lies more than 3,000 miles (4,800 kilometers) below our feet. It is surrounded by the outer core — a superhot layer of molten metals similar to those in the inner core — which is surrounded by a more solid sea of molten rock, known as the mantle, and the crust. Although the entire planet rotates, the inner core can spin at a slightly different speed as the mantle and crust due to the viscosity of the outer core.

Since scientists started mapping Earth’s inner layers with detailed seismic activity records around 40 years ago, the inner core has rotated slightly faster than the mantle and the crust. But in a new study, published June 12 in the journal Nature, researchers found that since 2010, the inner core has been slowing down and is now rotating a bit more slowly than our planet’s outer layers.

“When I first saw the seismograms that hinted at this change, I was stumped,” John Vidale, a seismologist at the University of Southern California, Dornsife, said in a statement. “But when we found two dozen more observations signaling the same pattern, the result was inescapable.”

If the inner core’s rotation continues to decelerate, its gravitational pull could eventually cause the outer layers of our planet to spin a little more slowly, altering the length of our days the researchers wrote.

However, any potential change would be on the order of thousandths of a second, which would be “very hard to notice,” Vidale said. As a result, we would likely not have to change our clocks or calendars to adjust for this difference, especially if it were only a temporary change.

Related: ‘New hidden world’ discovered in Earth’s inner core

A diagram showing how the inner core can rotate compared to the mantle and crust
A diagram showing how the inner core can rotate compared to the mantle and crust

This is not the first time scientists have suggested that Earth’s inner core is slowing down. This phenomenon, known as “backtracking,” has been debated for around a decade but has been very hard to prove.

In the new study, researchers analyzed data from more than 100 repeating earthquakes — seismic events that occur repeatedly at the same location — along a tectonic plate boundary in the South Sandwich Islands in the South Atlantic Ocean between 1991 and 2023.

Each earthquake allowed scientists to map the core’s position relative to the mantle and by comparing these measurements, the team was able to see how the inner core’s rotation rate changed over time.

The new study is the “most convincing” evidence so far that backtracking has been happening, Vidale said.

It is currently unclear why the inner core is backtracking, but it is likely caused by either “the churning of the liquid iron outer core that surrounds it” or “gravitational tugs from the dense regions of the overlying rocky mantle,” the researchers wrote.

It is also unclear how frequent backtracking is. It is possible that the inner core’s spin is constantly accelerating and decelerating, but these changes likely happen over decades or longer. Therefore, longer data sets are needed to infer anything about long-term trends.

related stories

Mysterious new substance possibly discovered inside Earth’s core

Rare primordial gas may be leaking out of Earth’s core

Ancient ocean floor surrounds Earth’s core, seismic imaging reveals

The inner core remains one of the most mysterious of Earth’s hidden layers. But in recent years, new technologies are allowing researchers to learn more about the inner core, including that it is slightly lopsided, that it is softer than expected, that it potentially wobbles off Earth’s axis and that it has a separate innermost core.

The study authors will continue to analyze seismic data to learn more about the heart of our planet and how it changes over time.

“The dance of the inner core might be even more lively than we know,” Vidale 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.

How extreme heat affects the body — and who’s most at risk

Yahoo! Life

How extreme heat affects the body — and who’s most at risk

Kate Murphy, Producer – June 18, 2024

Pittsburghers flock to the Water Steps at the Riverfront Park along the Allegheny River
People enjoying Riverfront Park in Pittsburgh. (Jeff Swensen/Getty Images)

Nearly 77 million Americans across the Midwest and Northeast are under heat alerts this week, with the National Weather Service warning of dangerously hot temperatures as high as the triple digits in many areas.

In Phoenix, temperatures are forecast to reach 113 degrees on Thursday — the first day of summer — followed by 115 degrees on Friday.

Extreme heat like this can be lethal, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Heat-related deaths in the U.S. have been increasing over the past few years, with about 1,600 in 2021; 1,700 in 2022, and 2,300 in 2023, according to the Department of Health and Human Services.

As temperatures are expected to scorch parts of the U.S. this week, here’s some important info on what extreme heat can do to the body, who is most at risk and heat-related illnesses to watch out for:

What happens to your body in extreme heat

A normal human’s body temperature ranges from 97°F-99°F. The body’s temperature needs to be regulated in order for internal organs to function properly. When your brain senses a change in body temperature, either hot or cold, it tries to help your body readjust.

When the body’s temperature is too hot, one of the most common ways the body cools itself is through sweat, which then evaporates in dry heat, thus cooling the body.

The other way the body cools itself is by moving warmer blood away from the internal organs to capillaries at the surface of the skin. That’s why people look flushed when their body temperature is elevated.

Heat-related illnesses can set in when the air temperature is hotter than the skin’s temperature, around 90°F, because it’s more difficult for your body to cool itself. When there’s extreme heat combined with humidity, sweat doesn’t evaporate as easily. That means your body’s temperature rises even higher, according to the Mayo Clinic.

👶 Who is most vulnerable to extreme heat?

According to the National Institute of Health and the CDC, the following groups are most at risk in extreme heat:

  • Children: The way their bodies regulate internal body temperatures can make them overwhelmed more quickly.
  • Older adults: They’re more likely to have a chronic medical condition or to be taking medications that affects the body’s response to heat.
  • People with chronic medical conditions: They’re less likely to sense and respond to changes in temperature.
  • Pregnant people: Their bodies must work harder to cool down not only their body, but the developing baby’s as well.
  • People experiencing homelessness: Those unsheltered or experiencing housing insecurity are more exposed to extreme heat.
  • Athletes and outdoor workers: Those who exercise or do strenuous work outside in extreme heat are more likely to become dehydrated and develop a heat-related illness
  • Pets: They can develop heat-related illnesses too.

To find out information on cooling centers in your state, the National Center for Health Housing provides a list.

Heat-related illness symptoms to watch out for:

The Centers for Disease Control provides a guide for what to watch for and what to do to prevent heat-related illnesses like heat stroke, heat exhaustion, heat cramps, sunburn and heat rash.

What a foolish psycho’: Trump’s Father’s Day rant slammed by critics — Biden among them

What a foolish psycho’: Trump’s Father’s Day rant slammed by critics — Biden among them

Kathleen Culliton – June 16, 2024

'What a foolish psycho': Trump's Father's Day rant slammed by critics — Biden among them
Former President Donald Trump speaks during the Alabama Republican Party’s 2023 Summer meeting at the Renaissance Montgomery Hotel on Aug. 4, 2023, in Montgomery, Ala. Trump’s appearance in Alabama comes one day after he was arraigned on federal charges in 
 Washington, D.C.
 D.C.
 for his alleged efforts to overturn the 2020 election. Julie Bennett/Getty Images

It’s not an American holiday until former President Donald Trump issues his all-caps complaint and is immediately, and ruthlessly, mocked.

On Father’s Day, Trump decided to celebrate his status as family patriarch with a lengthy tirade against “radical left degenerates” the former president, recently convicted on criminal charges, accused of “trying to influence” the judicial system against him.

President Joe Biden’s campaign was quick to respond Sunday evening with a succinct synopsis.

“Convicted felon Trump posts a deranged, all caps ‘Father’s Day’ message attacking the judicial system and promising revenge and retribution against those who don’t support him,” his campaign tweet reads.

ALSO READ: ‘Harm Democrats’: Republican lawmakers practically giddy about Trump prison silver lining

Hours earlier, Trump — who has a history of marking holidays by posting angry rants against his foes — issued the following screed on Truth Social:

“HAPPY FATHER’S DAY TO ALL, INCLUDING THE RADICAL LEFT DEGENERATES THAT ARE RAPIDLY BRINGING THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA INTO THIRD WORLD NATION STATUS WITH THEIR MANY ATTEMPTS AT TRYING TO INFLUENCE OUR SACRED COURT SYSTEM INTO BREAKING TO THEIR VERY SICK AND DANGEROUS WILL,” he wrote.

ALSO READ: Republican dodo birds have a death wish for us all

“WE NEED STRENGTH AND LOYALTY TO OUR COUNTRY, AND ITS WONDERFUL CONSTITUTION. EVERYTHING WILL BE ON FULL DISPLAY COME NOVEMBER 5TH, 2024 – THE MOST IMPORTANT DAY IN THE HISTORY OF OUR COUNTRY. MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!!!”

The Biden-Harris campaign was not the only voice raising a sly eyebrow at Trump’s comment, quickly flooded with dozens of messages of frustration, amusement and rage.

“He always has the worst holiday greetings of anyone I know,” wrote X user Franklin.

“Such a narcissistic, small man,” added Dawn Young-McDaniel.

“Yep, he is consistent in only one manner,” replied Trish Davis, “Telling us what a foolish psycho he aspires to be.”

The EPA Grossly Underestimated How Many Carcinogens are Polluting This Louisiana Region’s Air, Study Says

Futurism

The EPA Grossly Underestimated How Many Carcinogens are Polluting This Louisiana Region’s Air, Study Says

Maggie Harrison Dupré – June 15, 2024

A chemical plant-smattered stretch of Louisiana between New Orleans and Baton Rouge is already known as “Cancer Alley” due to disproportionately high levels of illnesses related to chemicals released by the area’s many manufacturing facilities. Now, according to a new study from researchers at Johns Hopkins University, the stretch of land — which, again, is already called Cancer Alley — is even worse off than scientists already thought.

The study, published this week in the journal Environmental Science & Technology, examined the rates of a toxic gas called ethylene oxide in the air covering the Louisiana region. Ethylene oxide is a known and potent carcinogen linked to lymphomas, breast cancer, and other health and life-threatening illnesses, and was banned in the European Union back in the early 1990s. But ethylene oxide is used to manufacture other chemicals, and though the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recognizes its toxicity, chemical plants in Louisiana’s Cancer Alley stretch continue to use the poisonous gas in their production processes — and as a result, leak ethylene oxide into the air.

And yet, though it’s long been known that the plants leak the poisonous gas, this new Johns Hopkins research finds that the EPA has been grossly underestimating exactly how much ethylene oxide is actually in Cancer Alley’s air. According to these new findings, the area’s average ethylene oxide level is double what previous EPA models suggested — and well beyond levels considered safe for area inhabitants.

“We expected to see ethylene oxide in this area,” said study senior author Peter DeCarlo, an associate professor at the university’s Department of Environmental Health and Engineering, in a statement. “But we didn’t expect the levels that we saw, and they certainly were much, much higher than EPA’s estimated levels.”

As explained in the study, any level of airborne ethylene oxide above 11 parts per trillion (PPT) is considered dangerous for long-term exposure (which, we should note, isn’t really that much, and speaks to how toxic the gas is.) Horrifyingly, the researchers found ethylene oxide levels above 11 PPT in three-quarters of the overall area they studied, with average levels for affected areas hovering around 31 PPT.

“We saw concentrations hitting 40 parts per billion,” said DeCarlo, “which is more a thousand times higher than the accepted risk for lifetime exposure.”

The findings are staggering. And as the researchers note, those who live and work in the area have never — until now — had access to this kind of detailed, accurate data about ethylene oxide figures. And it’s important to note that Cancer Alley’s Black residents are disproportionately likely to develop petrochemical industry-related illness, and that the EPA has openly accused Louisiana lawmakers of engaging in environmental racism.

“There is just no available data, no actual measurements of ethylene oxide in air, to inform [plant] workers and people who live nearby what their actual risk is based on their exposure to this chemical,” DeCarlo added.

As Grist reports, the EPA — which very much needs to update its modeling data — moved this year to install heavier regulations on ethylene oxide use and emissions. And though that’s certainly a necessary step, experts have continued to warn that the agency and other regulating bodies have been very slow to take it.

“The fossil fuel and petrochemical industry has created a ‘sacrifice zone’ in Louisiana,” Antonia Juhasz, a senior researcher on fossil fuels at Human Rights Watch, said earlier this year after the global nonprofit released a devastating report about the health consequences of Cancer Alley’s rampant chemical and fossil fuel pollution. “The failure of state and federal authorities to properly regulate the industry has dire consequences for residents of Cancer Alley.”

Indeed, mitigating future exposure through strict regulations is essential. But so, too, is supporting the people and communities currently living ethylene oxide’s harms.

“These monitors are good,” Rise St. James founder Sharon Lavigne, whose community action group opposes petrochemical expansion, told Grist of the Johns Hopkins report. “But in the meantime, people are dying.”