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L.A. Times - Environment

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

Last Build Date: Tue, 27 Jun 2017 02:02:52 -0700

Copyright: ©2017 Los Angeles Times

Scientists make water bottles the old-fashioned way to see if they were toxic to early Californians

Sat, 24 Jun 2017 06:00:00 PDT

If the ubiquity of pollutants in modern life has you yearning for the simpler ways of California’s early residents, an unusual scientific experiment may prompt you to reconsider.

After constructing water vessels using the methods of prehistoric people who lived on the Channel Islands, researchers...


California heat wave claims the lives of 2 Bay Area seniors

Wed, 21 Jun 2017 18:05:00 PDT

A record-breaking heat wave that has been roasting California for days has claimed the lives of two seniors in San Jose, public health officials said Wednesday.

A 72-year-old man and an 87-year-old woman died from heat-related illnesses Monday, according to the Santa Clara County Public Health...


As heat persists, California wildfire threat grows

Wed, 21 Jun 2017 14:45:00 PDT

A punishing heat wave that brought record temperatures to California this week may be easing, but the risk of wildfire was expected to grow Thursday as a result of continued warmth, increased winds and lush ground cover, according to the National Weather Service.

On Wednesday, the weather service...


California sees some of highest temperatures ever recorded amid heat wave

Wed, 21 Jun 2017 10:10:00 PDT

The heat wave hitting Southern California this week is one for the record books.

Temperatures topped 100 in the valleys and 120 in the low desert. Death Valley hit 127 — seven degrees shy of the hottest temperature ever recorded on the planet.

The National Weather Service said temperatures in some...


Today: In the Trump Era, Republicans 4, Democrats 0

Wed, 21 Jun 2017 05:00:00 PDT

I'm Davan Maharaj, editor-in-chief of the Los Angeles Times. Here are some story lines I don't want you to miss today.

TOP STORIES In Georgia, Torrential Rains and a GOP Win

The most expensive congressional race in American history came to an end Tuesday with Republican Karen Handel defeating Democrat...


Mandatory evacuations lifted near Big Bear Lake as wildfire grows to 1,200 acres amid California heat wave

Tue, 20 Jun 2017 20:50:00 PDT

Firefighters continued battling a wildfire Tuesday in the San Bernardino Mountains as flames spread into the rugged terrain amid a sweltering heat wave.

Mandatory evacuations were briefly issued for the area of Holcomb Valley Road and Highway 18 in Baldwin Lake, but the orders were lifted by 5:30...


It was 127 degrees in Death Valley, and miserable just about everywhere else. Here's how we coped

Tue, 20 Jun 2017 19:15:00 PDT

In Death Valley, the heat brought even the roadrunners to a stop. They stood arched to the sky with their beaks wide open, as if in a stupor, or indignant at what the sun was up to.

The landscape blurred and undulated. People moved as if they were walking through glue. When a light breeze came...


Las Vegas hits 117 degrees, tying a record, as the Southwest bakes

Tue, 20 Jun 2017 17:25:00 PDT

For much of the afternoon, outdoor dining areas and patios along the Las Vegas Strip were empty as the hot sun pounded the streets and sidewalk relentlessly.

Near the Linq Hotel & Casino, spray misters attached to tall posts outside gamely tried to combat the heat — though the water evaporated...


Southern Californians say 'water is the key' to surviving first summer heat wave

Tue, 20 Jun 2017 16:00:00 PDT

As the first heat wave of summer reached its anticipated peak Tuesday afternoon, Southern California residents employed a variety of methods to keep cool amid the swelter.

From the Pacific Coast to the Inland Empire, children and adults sought relief in air conditioned malls, libraries and movie...


Breakfast is canceled at a Death Valley restaurant — and other tales from the blazing desert

Tue, 20 Jun 2017 11:05:00 PDT

The temperature in Death Valley’s crumpled badlands was expected to reach 126 degrees by the afternoon, but things started to cook long before that at the Wrangler Restaurant in Furnace Creek on Tuesday.

By 7 a.m., on the first day of summer, customers, short-order cooks and waitresses were already...


When it comes to Southern California's heat wave, the worst is yet to come

Sun, 18 Jun 2017 21:05:00 PDT

Firefighters labored in scorching heat Sunday against five separate brush fires across Southern California as forecasters warned of more triple-digit temperatures in inland communities.

The punishing heat wave broke records on Sunday in Lancaster, Palmdale and Sandberg, which saw highs of 108,...


As temperatures heated up, some chilled out at mass meditation in L.A. park

Sat, 17 Jun 2017 17:00:00 PDT

It got a little toasty for hundreds people who turned out Saturday at the recently dedicated Los Angeles State Historic Park for a mass meditation.

Temperatures in the downtown area reached the mid-80s, according to the National Weather Service. About 2,000 people were expected to take part in...


Think it's hot now? Just wait: Southern California's heat wave is just getting started

Fri, 16 Jun 2017 16:15:00 PDT

Just when Californians thought it couldn't get any hotter this weekend, guess what? It will.(image)

Bummer: Report card says some Southern California beaches might make you sick

Thu, 15 Jun 2017 17:00:00 PDT

Heal the Bay's new beach report card shows that last winter's heavy rains polluted beaches but most should be safe this summer(image)

Trump's EPA wants to focus on Superfund cleanups. Will its plans take climate change into account?

Wed, 14 Jun 2017 03:00:00 PDT

The pioneers who built Seattle polluted and plumbed the lower Duwamish River for a century, straightening its wild curves and saturating its sediment with toxic chemicals from an asphalt plant, Boeing manufacturing facilities and other industries.

The damage was so severe that the last five miles...


From 122 degrees in Death Valley to 100 in Sacramento, heat wave to plague California this week

Tue, 13 Jun 2017 11:20:00 PDT

Sweltering heat will plague much of California this week and increase snowmelt through the Sierra Nevada, forecasters said.(image)

June gloom will give way to near-record heat later this week, forecasters say

Mon, 12 Jun 2017 13:15:00 PDT

A heat wave is expected in Southern California at the end of this week, but forecasters are not anticipating temperatures to break records.

Temperatures will be about 15 degrees higher than average in the Antelope Valley, with highs in the mid-100s forecast for Lancaster and Palmdale. In downtown...


Essential California: Oh my smog! California forges ahead with ozone-cutting measures

Fri, 9 Jun 2017 05:30:00 PDT

Good morning, and welcome to the Essential California newsletter. It’s Friday, June 9, and here’s what’s happening across California:


Oh my smog!

President Trump's EPA head, Scott Pruitt, announced this week that there would be a delay in the implementation of Obama-era limits on ozone,...


As Trump's EPA delays smog rules, California vows to forge ahead

Thu, 8 Jun 2017 12:45:00 PDT

California officials say they are forging ahead with emissions-cutting measures despite the Trump administration’s move this week to delay implementation of Obama-era limits on ozone, the lung-searing gas in smog.

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt told governors Tuesday...


Trump may be in trouble, but his appointees advance his startling agenda

Fri, 19 May 2017 05:00:00 PDT

Cable news is consumed with wall-to-wall coverage of every new development in Donald Trump’s political implosion, and liberals, still stunned by Trump’s rise to the White House, cannot get enough of it. For them, this national nightmare can’t be over soon enough.

Nevertheless, one disturbing reality...


An 'evolutionary gamble' may be killing Joshua Tree's mother tortoises

Tue, 16 May 2017 03:00:00 PDT

Wildlife biologists say an alarming number of female desert tortoise carcasses found earlier this year just outside the southern edge of Joshua Tree National Park may be the result of mothers fighting extinction by exhausting their water and energy to lay eggs, even under stress.

U.S. Geological...


Giant Alaska mine proposal gets new chance under Trump administration

Fri, 12 May 2017 13:45:00 PDT

The Trump administration has given new life to a proposed gold and copper mine in Alaska that would be built at the headwaters of one of the world’s largest runs of wild salmon.

The Environmental Protection Agency reached a legal settlement late Thursday with the Canadian company that wants to...


Scientists are on alert after the latest changes at the EPA

Tue, 9 May 2017 03:00:00 PDT

Scientists are on high alert this week after the Environmental Protection Agency failed to renew the appointments of at least six independent researchers who served on an EPA advisory board.

The decision does not directly affect the work of the scientists who are employed by the agency. Nor was...


Thousands march nationwide to protest Trump climate policies

Sat, 29 Apr 2017 16:50:00 PDT

Thousands of people across the U.S. marched in rain, snow and sweltering heat Saturday to demand action on climate change — mass protests that coincided with President Trump's 100th day in office and took aim at his agenda for rolling back environmental protections.

At the marquee event, the Peoples...