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Expedition to the Land of Ice Bears

It was almost at the exact moment of the northern solstice that we boarded the National Geographic Explorer for a week-long expedition to the Arctic archipelago of Svalbard–the time of year when the sun reaches the highest point in the sky as seen from the North Pole. We were in the land of the midnight sun, and we would not see the darkness of night for the entire time we were there.

Rule for Regulating Existing Power Plants under Fire

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Gina McCarthy testified before the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee during a hearing on “EPA’s Proposed Carbon Pollution Standards for Existing Power Plants.” Debate about the proposed rule to regulate carbon emissions from existing power plants has swirled since the rule’s release last month. Coal-heavy states and others have criticized both the…

Climate Change Already Having Profound Impacts on Lakes in Europe

For perspective on how climate change is affecting lakes, those of us here in the U.S. can just look across the pond, where scientists and the agencies involved in meeting the European Union’s Water Framework Directive have amassed an impressive body of research on the topic. Not only are extreme weather events such as droughts…

Global Warming Boosting Reindeer on Norwegian Island—For Now

Reindeer on Norway’s Svalbard archipelago are bucking the trend and thriving, according to a long-term study.

White House Announces New Climate Change Initiatives

The White House on Wednesday announced executive actions to help states and communities build their resilience to more intense storms, high heat, sea level rise, and other effects of climate change. The actions, which involve several federal agencies, were among the recommendations by the president’s State, Local and Tribal Leaders Task Force on Climate Preparedness and Resilience. “…Climate…

Late Monsoons and Agricultural Improvisation in Telangana, India

Dark clouds and the low rumble of thunder sprawled across the sky interrupting my interview transcriptions.  Finally, I thought.  The rains have come.  Since I arrived in late May, I’ve joined Telangana farmers in weeks of 100-110 degree weather.  Monsoon rains signal the beginning of the most important phase of agriculture, a welcome sign in…

China and U.S. Sign Pacts on Climate Change

The world’s two largest carbon emitters have signed pacts to cut greenhouse gas emissions. The deals—actually eight projects demonstrating smart grids and carbon capture, utilization and storage—were made through the China-U.S. Climate Change Working Group and will involve companies and research bodies. “The significance of these two nations coming together can’t be understated,” said U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry at the…

Supreme Court Says EPA Can Regulate Greenhouse Gas Emissions

In the latest decision on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) authority to regulate carbon pollution, the U.S. Supreme Court reaffirmed EPA’s authority to regulate greenhouse gas emissions under the Clean Air Act, but voted 5-4 to limit permitting requirements. The ruling does not directly affect the EPA’s latest proposed rule to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from existing power plants, and…

Climate Change Joins Lions and Livestock in an Unlikely Partnership

In the coming years, climate change will transform the world in ways that we have not predicted. The king of the big cats has already survived two major periods of change, but with humans quickly taking over valuable grassland habitat, will they be able to survive another? On the Maasai Steppe of Tanzania, lions have…

To Save Coral Reefs, Start With Parrotfish

  Coral reefs are very complex ecosystems, but luckily managing them sustainably is not. Simply don’t catch fish faster than they reproduce, don’t damage the corals or pollute the water, reduce atmospheric CO2, and protect some areas as marine reserves. That’s easier said than done, and it’s not news. What is new is that an…

Pictures: Inside Scandinavia’s Biggest Icebreaker

Take a look inside the Oden, the 351-foot (107-meter) Swedish vessel that pulverizes ice and helps polar scientists do their jobs.

June 22, 2014: Defying Gravity With Our Dog, Stalking Snow Leopards and More

Every week, embark with host Boyd Matson on an exploration of the latest discoveries and interviews with some of the most fascinating people on the planet, on National Geographic Weekend. This week, we soar with dogs, look for a peaceful resolution to Middle Eastern conflicts, recover lost treasures high in the Andes, save snow leopards, venture to the North Pole for the last time, preach the dangers of cheap meat, rehab injured city critters, and ponder our climate future.

Senate Clears Way for Keystone XL Pipeline

The U.S. Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee voted 12 to 10 on a bill Wednesday approving the long-debated Keystone XL oil pipeline. The pipeline, which would transport oil from Canada to the U.S. Gulf Coast, requires presidential approval as it crosses international boundaries. Without a commitment from Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid to bring it to a vote…

Lindblad-National Geographic, a Ten-Year Expedition of Inspiration and Discovery

Ten years ago Lindblad Expeditions and the National Geographic Society joined forces to inspire, illuminate, and teach the world through expedition travel. The collaboration in exploration, research, technology, and conservation has provided extraordinary experiences to thousands of travelers, raised funds and awareness to address critical challenges to the environment, and inspired people to be better stewards of the planet. In this National Geographic-behind-the-scenes interview, Sven-Olof Lindblad, founder and president of Lindblad Expeditions, talks about the impetus behind the partnership, some of the accomplishments, and his thoughts of the future.

States, Studies React to EPA Rule Release

On the coattails of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed rule for regulating carbon dioxide emissions from existing power plants, the White House issued a report on the health effects of climate change. The seven-page report outlines six major risks linked to rising temperatures—asthma, lung and heart illnesses; infectious disease; allergies; flooding-related hazards and heat stroke. But one week after release of the…