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L.A. Times - Environment

The latest news from the Los Angeles Times on science and environmental science.

Last Build Date: Wed, 18 Oct 2017 02:22:47 -0700

Copyright: ©2017 Los Angeles Times

Fires, droughts and hurricanes: What's the link between climate change and natural disasters?

Tue, 17 Oct 2017 12:50:00 PDT

Hurricanes, wildfires and other natural disasters seem to be getting more severe. Here's how they may be linked with climate change.(image)

Smoke from wine country fires leads to 200 canceled flights, hazardous air quality: 'It is basically like living in Beijing'

Thu, 12 Oct 2017 16:10:00 PDT

The deadly fires raging in Northern California have devastated thousands of acres of bucolic wine country and torched thousands of homes, but the damage isn’t limited to the scorched rolling hills north of the San Francisco Bay.

Health officials say the Bay Area is experiencing the worst air quality...


Civil servants charge Trump is sidelining workers with expertise on climate change and environment

Wed, 4 Oct 2017 11:55:00 PDT

Interior Department manager Joel Clement figured his new bosses in the Trump administration might disapprove of his climate-change-focused work protecting Alaskan villages from rising seas.

But the reassignment slip Clement received in June stunned him. He was not only removed from his post as...


Camp Pendleton under consent decree after rats, frogs found in water supply

Thu, 28 Sep 2017 18:25:00 PDT

Camp Pendleton officials swear that the water consumed by 55,000 Marines and their families is safe, despite a pair of scathing state and federal investigations indicating chronic problems in the treatment systems at the sprawling military base.

Water safety inspectors visiting Camp Pendleton over...


U.S. and Mexico may be at odds, but they've reached agreement on managing the Colorado River

Wed, 27 Sep 2017 16:05:00 PDT

The United States and Mexico expanded a long-term agreement Wednesday that will allow both nations to continue using the Colorado River while also pushing more conservation efforts to ensure that water is available during droughts.

The nine-year deal, which expands on a 1944 water treaty between...


Mnuchin, Price and others on Trump's team are flying high with taxpayer money – but where's the outrage?

Tue, 26 Sep 2017 03:00:00 PDT

The Treasury secretary requested a military plane for his European honeymoon. The head of Health and Human Services ran up a six-figure tab flying around the country on private jets. The chief of the Environmental Protection Agency dinged taxpayers for repeated excursions back home to Oklahoma.


EPA removes waste at Texas toxic sites but won't say from where

Sun, 24 Sep 2017 18:00:00 PDT

The Environmental Protection Agency says it has recovered 517 containers of "unidentified, potentially hazardous material" from highly contaminated toxic waste sites in Texas that flooded last month during Hurricane Harvey.

The agency has not provided details about which Superfund sites the material...


L.A.’s palm trees are dying and it’s changing the city’s famous skyline

Fri, 22 Sep 2017 09:55:00 PDT

Like so many things in Southern California, the palm tree was an import from somewhere else that over time became inextricably symbolic of its adopted home.

But the trees, so identified with the sun-splashed excitement of Los Angeles, are facing a decidedly darker fate. They are dying of fatal...


Six deaths linked to Bay Area heat wave

Fri, 8 Sep 2017 12:30:00 PDT

Six people died from heat-related illnesses amid a record-breaking hot spell that roasted the Bay Area over the Labor Day weekend, officials say.

Those who died were seniors, mostly in their late 70s, 80s and 90s, and nearly all were found in their Bay Area homes, according to coroner’s officials...


In Harvey's wake, frustration over flood's ravages tempered by spirit of solidarity

Sun, 3 Sep 2017 15:15:00 PDT

Storm-tossed Texans pressed ahead Sunday with door-to-door searches for frail and elderly survivors, and accelerated an exodus from evacuation centers where some had sheltered in the wake of the most powerful hurricane to strike the continental U.S. in more than a decade.

As tens of thousands in...


San Francisco sets all-time heat record downtown at 106 degrees during state's hottest recorded summer

Fri, 1 Sep 2017 21:45:00 PDT

In almost 150 years of record keeping, it has never been as hot in San Francisco as it was on Friday.

Amid a brutal heat wave that has broiled California for a week while intermittently knocking out power to thousands and fueling more than a dozen wildfires, downtown San Francisco hit 106 degrees.


Record heat, lightning, fires, intense rain: California's extreme weather gets wilder

Fri, 1 Sep 2017 05:00:00 PDT

The heat wave that has gripped California for a week took a dramatic turn Thursday as lightning storms sparked brush fires, knocked out power to thousands and caused downpours across the region.

Forecasters said the extreme weather will continue through the weekend, with some parts of Northern...


Record heat wave brings lightning, brush fires and intense rain to Southern California

Thu, 31 Aug 2017 18:20:00 PDT

Already suffering under a heat wave, Southern California faced intense summer storms that moved in Thursday afternoon, bringing lightning strikes that set off brush fires as well as intense downpours.

A 25-acre brush fire erupted near the 5 Freeway about 4:36 p.m. amid a lightning storm, said Fire...


LADWP sees highest demand ever as Angelenos roast in record-breaking heat wave

Thu, 31 Aug 2017 18:00:00 PDT

Los Angeles Department of Water and Power customers used more electricity on Thursday battling the heat wave than has ever been used in the agency’s history, DWP officials announced.

Customers hit a peak demand of 6,502 megawatts at 4:15 p.m., shattering the previous record of 6,396 megawatts used...


Harvey pounded the nation's chemical epicenter. What's in the foul-smelling floodwater left behind?

Thu, 31 Aug 2017 16:35:00 PDT

The pounding rains of Hurricane Harvey washed over the conduits, cooling towers, ethylene crackers and other esoteric equipment of the nation’s largest complex of chemical plants and petroleum refineries, leaving behind small lakes of brown, foul-smelling water whose contents are a mystery.



Triple-digit temperatures continue as stubborn heat wave bakes Southern California

Wed, 30 Aug 2017 15:50:00 PDT

Patricia Morataya kept busy Wednesday in Woodland Hills, where temperatures are known to break records.

Throughout the day, amid a scorching heat wave that is setting records from Redding to Lake Elsinore, people passing by gravitated to her fruit cart at the corner of Topanga Canyon and Ventura...


Southern California heat wave expected to linger through the weekend

Tue, 29 Aug 2017 22:15:00 PDT

The heat wave hitting Southern California isn't going away.

The National Weather Service says the Southland will continue to swelter well into next week, bringing triple digit temperatures to inland valleys along with elevated fire danger and the potential for power outages.

An excessive-heat warning...


Record-breaking heat wave to scorch Southern California

Mon, 28 Aug 2017 20:00:00 PDT

A sweltering heat wave will blanket Southern California through the middle of the week, elevating the fire danger and probably breaking many heat records, according to forecasters.

The National Weather Service on Monday issued an excessive-heat warning through Wednesday, saying the high temperatures...


Heat wave expected to bring triple-digit temperatures to Southern California

Fri, 25 Aug 2017 09:15:00 PDT

Get ready to get sweaty.

A prolonged heat wave that is expected to bring triple-digit temperatures to much of Southern California has been forecast to begin this weekend and stick around through at least the middle of next week, according to the National Weather Service.

A large high-pressure system...


Essential California: Senate bills aim to make homes more affordable, but ...

Sat, 12 Aug 2017 06:00:00 PDT

Good morning, and welcome to the Essential California newsletter. It is Saturday, Aug. 12. Here’s what you don’t want to miss this weekend:


Not enough help

A package of bills supported by Gov. Jerry Brown and legislative leaders now being considered to alleviate the state’s affordability...


'Lucifer' heat wave keeps parts of Europe on red alert

Sat, 5 Aug 2017 04:25:00 PDT

No wonder it's been dubbed “Lucifer.” A relentless heat wave that gripped parts of Europe this week has sent temperatures soaring to record highs for several days, causing at least two deaths and prompting authorities to issue weather alerts.

Extreme heat in Italy, and parts of France and Spain...


Congress takes aim at the Clean Air Act, putting the limits of California's power to the test

Thu, 3 Aug 2017 03:00:00 PDT

California is confronting the limits of its power to save federal environmental protections as Congress and the Trump administration take aim at a landmark law the state has relied on for decades to clean the air of noxious smog.

A push by Republicans to roll back parts of the Clean Air Act would...


15 states, including California, appeal EPA delay of stricter air-quality standards

Tue, 1 Aug 2017 13:45:00 PDT

Attorneys general from 15 states, including California, filed a legal challenge on Tuesday over the Trump administration's delay of Obama-era rules reducing emissions of smog-causing air pollutants.

The states petitioned the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit to overturn...


A Bay Area town, criticized for building a water park during a historic drought, did not back down

Wed, 26 Jul 2017 03:00:00 PDT

Chlorine. It’s the smell of summer, and it hit me squarely in the nose when I walked into a new water park in Dublin, Calif., early Tuesday morning.

A few women did laps in the indoor pool, under a translucent roof. Outside, in another large pool, teenage swim team members practiced under the gaze...