climate change

The storms that inundated Louisiana this week did not have names, and they were not hurricanes. Nonetheless, officials are calling the Louisiana rain and floods the biggest U.S. natural disaster since Superstorm Sandy.

In California, wildfires have charred more than 350 square miles so far this year, and fire season hasn’t yet hit its peak.

Louisiana is among 29 states which filed a lawsuit against the federal government, saying new environmental regulations are too extensive and costly.

The Supreme Court took the side of the opposing states by issuing a "stay" against the Environmental Protection Agency’s new mandates on carbon dioxide emissions from power plants. The states say those requirements are too hard to meet and will be bad for industry and jobs.

The new laws would require greatly reduced emissions by 2022.

Tegan Wendland / WWNO

The international climate talks wrapped up in Paris this weekend as the United Nations parties finalized an agreement to stave off climate change. The terms of the agreement call for limiting global temperature rise to around 1.5 degrees Celsius, well below the initial goal of 2 degrees.

WWNO’s Tegan Wendland talked with Bob Thomas, professor and director of Loyola’s center for environmental communication, about whether it will make a difference.

From right, United Houma Nation first lady Noreen Dardar and principle chief Thomas Dardar with other members of the Gulf South Rising delegation from Louisiana. Dardar is in Paris seeking support for his coastal Louisiana tribe.
Monique Verdin / http://moniquemverdin.com

International leaders continue negotiations Monday at the climate talks in Paris, and some Louisianans are there to advocate for their communities. One of those is principle chief of the United Houma Nation, Thomas Dardar.

The Houma have long inhabited south Louisiana but are not federally recognized as a Native American tribe, partly because the government requires that tribes have a central base, but the Houma population is very spread out.

Wind-power trees, part of many installations at COP21 in Paris.
Tegan Wendland / WWNO

In Paris, international climate change negotiations continue. Drafts of the negotiating text are circulating, as the delegates meet in working groups behind closed doors. Meanwhile governments and agencies are releasing new reports and studies to highlight the serious impact of climate change. That includes new information on how climate change affects basic human survival through food production.

Protesters on the second day of the United Nations climate change talks in Paris.
Tegan Wendland / WWNO

Many small island countries are banking on support from the United Nations to help them cope with the impacts of sea level rise and coastal erosion, as a result of climate change. WWNO’s Tegan Wendland reports from Paris on the second day of UN negotiations to reduce global warming. She found that island nations' challenges are similar to those faced here in Louisiana.

Tegan Wendland / WWNO

The first day of the United Nations international climate talks has wrapped up at the Conference Of the Parties, or COP21, in Paris. As world leaders try to reach an agreement to limit global warming and stave off climate change, Louisiana has a lot at stake.

Laine Kaplan-Levenson / WWNO

The French Embassy in the United States and Tulane University came together earlier this week to present the French American Climate Talks, or FACTS. The conference series travels to cities in the United States and Canada to engage scientists and policymakers in discussions about the impacts of climate change, and how we can prepare to face them.

New Orleans tourism officials kicked off a national bus tour scheduled to stop in regions most at risk from climate change. Those officials are linking jobs and coastal restoration.

Arctic sea ice has melted dramatically this summer, smashing the previous record. The Arctic has warmed dramatically compared with the rest of the planet, and scientists say that's what's driving this loss of ice.

To be sure, ice on the Arctic Ocean always melts in the summer. Historically, about half of it is gone by mid-September. But this year, three-fourths of the ice has melted away, setting a dramatic new benchmark.

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