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climate change

The U.S. Federal Reserve has created its first committee to research the financial risks posed by climate change.


After this year's historic wildfires, California's oldest state park — Big Basin Redwoods — looks more like a logging village than an iconic hiking and camping mecca.

There's a near constant buzz of chainsaws. Rumblings from trucks and logging skidders fill the air as crews busily cut charred, fallen trees and chop down "hazard trees" rangers worry will topple on to the park's roadways.

An image of a big meadow with forests surrounding it.
Cody Reed

Researchers have found that it’s not just forests on the landscape that can help mitigate climate change. Meadows also provide an efficient way to keep carbon out of the atmosphere.

Solar panels in Nevada desert
andreiorlov / Adobe Stock

The U.S. is now officially out of the Paris climate accord

Climate policy is mixed around the Mountain West, but many states are seeing action and a transition to renewable energy regardless of federal leadership. 

Bulldozer helps with firing operation
Inciweb

Scientists say the size and intensity of wildfires that we’re seeing today is alarming because it’s what they were predicting would happen 30 years down the road – not right now. 

An ominous smoke cloud fills the sky in Wyoming
Greg Sanders / InciWeb

Drought, wildfire and record-breaking heat are all part of the current climate landscape in the Mountain West. 

It’s a triple whammy that’s expected to continue into the coming months. 

A U.S. map with drought monitor readings from October 6, 2020. The map displays extreme and exceptional drought throughout the west, with the most notable readings in Utah, Nevada and New Mexico.
Brian Fuchs / National Drought Mitigation Center

A few weeks ago, rancher Noah Brooks said what was troubling him most was the weather.

“The fact that it didn’t rain, June, July, August but maybe three times, that this community runs around cattle and feed and if we don’t get some rain, we’re in big big trouble, and I think that we’re drying out,” he said.

Brooks lives in Clark, Colorado. But the conditions he describes are persistent throughout the region.

Photo of a lake with visible rocks under the water and a woman paddleboarding.
Isaac Hoops

The Annual Tahoe Summit was held virtually on Tuesday. This year, officials focused on climate change and the COVID-19 pandemic’s impact on the lake.

The silhouette of a person standing outside on a hot day.
NOAA

There's an effort afoot to better identify heat waves – like the one gripping much of the American West right now.

Two-thirds of Americans think the federal government should be doing more to reduce the impacts of climate change, according to a new Pew Research Center survey.


A recent study shows that humans have been living in a specific temperature "niche" for at least 6,000 years, but climate change could force billions of people to live in areas outside of the niche by 2070. That could be intolerably hot, even lethal, for many of them.  

An image of a mountain slope with a receding snow line.
Nathan Anderson / Unsplash

In much of the West, snowpack levels have historically been one of the more reliable ways to determine whether a drought was coming. But a new study says climate change could soon make snowpack data much less reliable.

Graph of annual average temperatures in Reno since first Earth Day in 1970.
Climate Central

April 22 marks the 50th anniversary of the first Earth Day back in 1970. Much has changed since then, from climate science to renewable energy. Dr. Kristen Averyt is Nevada's State Climate Policy Coordinator, and she spoke with KUNR to talk about how things have evolved over 50 years.

An image of a dusty parcel of land showing crops completely dried out from drought.
NOAA

Researchers in our region are arguing for new models to better plan for a recent climate phenomenon: flash droughts. According to a new paper published in the journal Nature Climate Change, these events present new challenges for climate predictors.

Ten years ago, when Colorado College first conducted the Conservation in the West Poll, 48 percent of respondents said yes, climate change is a problem requiring action. This year, that number is up to 59 percent.

Managing Cattle To Mitigate Climate Change

Feb 4, 2020
Two horseback riders approach a herd of cattle.
Abbey Smith

Several thousand people came together in Elko over the weekend to celebrate the 36th annual National Cowboy Poetry Gathering. Folklife aficionados came from all corners of the country; they shared music, stories and spoken word.

In addition to the lively arts scene, a group of cowboys presented on how ranchers can manage cattle to mitigate climate change.

Rural economies could get a massive boost under policies meant to decrease carbon emissions, according to an analysis by the Center for American Progress, a progressive think tank.

 


The United States could see tens of thousands more violent crimes per year as climate change causes warmer winters, according to a new study by researchers at the University of Colorado, Boulder.

Many ranchers are applauding President Donald Trump after he announced an overhaul of the nation’s bedrock environmental law on Thursday. 

The Trump administration’s latest National Preparedness Report is the first of its kind to completely ignore climate change

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