News Highlights

New NASA Research Projects Probe COVID-19 Impacts

NASA’s Earth Science Division recently selected three new projects that aim to answer pandemic-related questions for Rapid Response and Novel Research (RRNES) awards. RRNES is funding quick-turnaround projects that make innovative use of the agency’s resources and data to better understand regional-to-global environmental, economic, and societal impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Need Some Good News? Congress Passes the Great American Outdoors Act

Congress today passed the Great American Outdoors Act (GAOA), a critical step to sustaining nature and everyone’s access to it. Like the Public Lands Act that passed last spring, GAOA delivers something to every part of the country. It does so by permanently funding the existing Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) and creating a new fund to pay for necessary repairs and maintenance of park infrastructure.

New climate predictions assess global temperatures in coming five years

The annual mean global temperature is likely to be at least 1° Celsius above pre-industrial levels (1850-1900) in each of the coming five years (2020-2024) and there is a 20% chance that it will exceed 1.5°C in at least one year, according to new climate predictions issued by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO).

Keeping a Steady Eye on Sea Level Change from Space

Currently, sea levels rise an average of 0.13 inches (3.3 millimeters) per year, more than twice the rate at the start of the 20th century. For nearly three decades NASA satellites have been providing critical information about change sea levels. helped researchers reveal the inner workings of weather phenomena like El Niño and to forecast how much the ocean could encroach on coastlines around the world. Now, engineers and scientists are preparing two satellites to add to this legacy, extending the dataset another decade.

July 4th Extremes

If there’s one thing that won’t change about this year’s July 4th celebrations, it’s the heat. Over the past year, there were 49 all-time record highs (according to NCEI) across the U.S., compared with just 2 record lows.

NASA-NOAA Satellite Analyzes Saharan Dust Plume

Aerosol particles (like dust) have an effect on human health, weather and climate. While African dust plumes traveling across the Atlantic Ocean are not new, this dust storm has been quite expansive. A NASA satellite has provided a closer and animated look to help understand the dust plume streaming over the SE United States.

NASA Fosters Innovative Ways to Understand Biodiversity

NASA is creating portals with biodiversity information for scientists, land managers, and decision makers to support conservation in a changing climate.

Climate knowledge for everyone

To support better understanding and action, a new interactive website launched by MIT leads the public through the knowns (and unknowns) of climate change.

Can’t ‘See’ Sea Level Rise? You’re Looking in the Wrong Place

Sea level rise is a global problem. This blog post highlights a key paradox about sea level rise: since it occurs relatively slowly, it can be easy to think it’s not happening. But, if you’re not seeing it, you’re just not looking in the right place.

CO2 and the Climate Curve

Even as emissions temporarily decline during the pandemic, global temperatures and CO2 levels continue to rise. These key concepts, graphics, and supporting resources including experts to interview aim to help answer the question “how can we bend the climate curve?”

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