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TCN’s original, in-depth reporting and analysis

November 2, 2020 ELECTION 2020

Climate change will loom large over the next presidential term

Even more climate-related disasters may pile up in the early 2020s, say experts, and several new scientific assessments are being readied for prime time to update the picture of what lies ahead. Science writer Robert Henson reports.

November 1, 2020 ELECTION 2020

Analysis: Trump would continue to boost fossil fuels, spurn climate science

The president’s record and statements, along with statements by administration officials, indicate that the past four years were a vivid prologue to another term: More of the same on climate and energy.

October 31, 2020 ELECTION 2020

Analysis: Biden’s climate plan offers a stark contrast to Trump’s record

The former vice president’s climate platform is broad and detailed, but will probably require Democrats’ seizing the Senate and keeping control of the House. Then he’ll need to maneuver the tricky dance of legislation.

October 29, 2020 ELECTION 2020

Election may yield a Texas House friendlier to clean energy, climate action

Democrats are optimistic about upping their strength in the Legislature’s GOP-dominated lower chamber. Winning control isn’t out of the question. Either outcome could mean the best chance for climate-linked bills in years.

October 27, 2020 ELECTION 2020

Hill Country showdown: Wendy Davis, Chip Roy in a congressional horse race

Republican Roy has decried “hysteria” about climate-change concerns and declined to accept the scientific consensus about human causation. Democrat Davis says climate change is an existential threat requiring strong action.

October 23, 2020 ELECTION 2020

Controversial methane releases ignite interest in Railroad Commission race

The regulatory agency’s traditional friendliness to the oil and gas industry’s venting and flaring of methane is a focus of this year’s election. Methane is both a potent climate disruptor and a health-threatening pollutant.

October 21, 2020 ELECTION 2020

Can the Green New Deal win Texas voters’ support? Mike Siegel thinks so.

Siegel, the Democratic candidate in a congressional district stretching from Austin to Houston, is an enthusiastic Green New Deal advocate. Michael McCaul, the eight-term Republican incumbent, is an enthusiastic critic.

October 19, 2020 ELECTION 2020

Cornyn and Hegar treat climate and energy issues as a balancing act

The two Senate candidates acknowledge climate change is a threat. GOP incumbent Cornyn calls for research, Democrat Hegar for more renewable energy. Both distance themselves from their parties’ presidential nominees.

September 22, 2020

Climate change may raise risks of poisonous plants, disease-bearing insects

Carbon pollution isn't just boosting hurricanes, heatwaves and wildfires. It could be increasing hazards like ticks, pollen, mosquitoes and poison ivy. Science writer Melissa Gaskill surveys the situation in Texas.

September 3, 2020

Evidence grows that more quick-strengthening Lauras are in our future

The likelihood that a tropical cyclone would become a Category 3-5 hurricane grew by 8 percent per decade between 1979 and 2017, according to a new study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

August 7, 2020

Public transportation may see dramatic makeover in post-pandemic world

Don’t be surprised if Covid-19 spells the end of fixed-route, big-bus systems, to be replaced by autonomous vehicles and more flexible “demand-responsive” operations, transportation experts say.

July 2, 2020

Pandemic may prompt behavioral changes good for atmosphere, experts say

Stay-at-home orders and lockdowns resulted in sharp drops in C02 emissions that likely won’t continue when the Covid pandemic wanes. But recovery does offer opportunities to remake our economy in climate-friendly ways.

June 25, 2020 Q&A: PART 2 OF 2

Environmental justice: The Trump administration and the road ahead

Robert Bullard, “father of environmental justice,” reflects on Trump's environmental rollbacks, a “convergence” of issues after George Floyd's death, and his hopes for the future. Second of a two-part interview.

June 22, 2020 Q&A: PART 1 OF 2

Environmental justice: How far have we come, how far yet to go?

Robert Bullard of Texas Southern University, “father of environmental justice,” assesses the swelling anti-racism movement and the campaign to link environmentalism with racial and social justice. First of a two-part interview.

May 19, 2020

Advocacy groups move online to continue the fight during pandemic lockdown

Environmental justice groups rely heavily on direct contact with government and with people affected by pollution and climate change. Covid-19 hasn’t made their work any easier, but they adapt and carry on.

April 28, 2020

When it comes to carbon neutrality, Texas schools have a long way to go

A look at the carbon-neutrality plans of three universities and a community district shows signs of progress toward net-zero emissions, but also a long road before they reach that climate-action goal.

April 4, 2020

Ecosystem disruption means more human exposure to pathogens, scientists say

A growing body of research links environmental disturbance and biodiversity loss to human diseases, including those, like Covid-19, that are caused by viruses jumping from animals to people.

February 21, 2020

Monarch butterflies, already in peril, can’t seem to catch a break

Factors behind the beautiful creatures’ decline range from climate change to degraded habitat. Their immense migration traverses Texas. “What happens in Texas affects the rest of the breeding range,” one researcher says.

February 13, 2020

Super-green YouTube show gives Texas some serious renewable-energy cred

The UK-based show’s “Fully Charged LIVE” event drew standing-room crowds in Austin for its showcase of an array of new electric vehicles – from bicycles to Texas-size pickups. An omen of the state’s automotive future?

January 18, 2020

2020 kicks off with more hot news about climate change – and it isn’t good

An announcement by NASA and NOAA about rising temperatures is consistent with a series of other recent reports that indicate the world isn’t making progress needed to escape the worst effects of global warming.

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