We know you’ve been busy this week. Maybe you’re a political hound and were hanging on every chad in the Florida GOP primary (if you were DVR-ing, spoiler alert: Mitt Romney won big). Or perhaps business is your bag and you’re trying to scare up some loose change to get a piece of Facebook’s upcoming IPO. Or maybe you’re a sports junkie and have been reveling in pre-Super Bowl hype.
Whatever the case, we’ve taken the liberty of summarizing the week that was at Climate Central. Kind of a Climate Central CliffsNotes.
Monday, Jan. 30
No, the National Hockey League’s biggest star did not sustain a head injury by slipping and falling on receding polar ice. But he is the victim of the same kind of resistance to science that has made climate change such an accelerating and intractable problem. Full story
The Little Ice Age Explained
The Little Ice Age has never been fully explained. Now comes a new study in Geophysical Research Letters that claims to explain it. The cause: a series of four massive volcanic explosions (think Krakatoa or Tambora), starting in 1275 A.D., which threw up massive amounts of aerosol particles that blocked sunlight and cooled the planet. Full story
Tuesday, Jan. 31
Drought May Cause Shutdown of Texas Rice Production
Although recent rains have put a dent in the Texas drought, a day of reckoning looms for the state’s long-grain rice growers, who pump millions into the economy in Southeast Texas each year and account for about 5 percent of America’s rice production. Full story
Record Warmth in Eastern U.S.; Temps Tumble in Alaska
While Alaska continues to suffer from record cold and snow, much of the rest of the country continues to experience a year without winter. This week, it’s likely that warm temperature records will be broken throughout the eastern U.S.Full story
Wednesday, Feb. 1
Did Global Warming Destroy My Hometown?
From our friends at Popular Science comes a first-person account following the devastating tornado that ravaged Joplin, Missouri, as the author tries to answer the unanswerable: Was climate change causing this insane weather? Full story
38 Climate Scientists Push Back with Letter to WSJ
38 climate scientists harshly criticize a global warming op-ed that ran in the Wall Street Journal last week for its scientific inaccuracies. The scientists write that the op-ed misstated the evidence on global warming and falsely represented certain authors. Full story
Thursday, Feb. 2
The groundhog Punxsutawney Phil may have seen his shadow, but the prospect of six more weeks of the mild winter doesn’t seem so terrible. In fact, now that we’re past the typical coldest period of the year, the days are already getting longer, and the typical average temperatures are warming up day by day across the country. Full story
Extreme Cold Proves Deadly in Europe
While much of the U.S. has had a mild winter this year, record cold and snow are being blamed for dozens of deaths in Europe. Snow has fallen as far south as the Adriatic Sea, and the Black Sea has frozen along the Romanian coast. In Ukraine, temperatures dipped to the -20s°F, killing more than 40 people, many of them homeless. Full story
Friday, Feb. 3
Clear and Present Dangers Not so Clear, or Present
Whether we’re talking about environmental risks, like climate change, or systemic economic peril, our brains are hard-wired to focus on dangers that are front and center. But it turns out that even with a near-term, existential threat, such as a massive tornado barreling toward us, people still respond in complicated, often unpredictable ways. Full Story
Published at Climate Central, reproduced with permission