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It’s more than just a steamy summer. Drastic weather events, like wildfires, flooding, and droughts, are sweeping the globe at levels that can only be explained by climate change.
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While it takes time to analyze the cause of these events, experts are reasonably convinced that the wacky weather we’re witnessing is largely due to human activity.
As fire tears through hot, parched areas of the western U.S. and Canada, NASA satellites capture plumes of smoke moving across the region.
Extreme heat has spurred 129 forest fires to burn in Manitoba. Residents are evacuating, and smoke from the fires is drifting to the upper Midwest and neighboring Canadian provinces.
If the air seems smoggy, it’s not just your eyes. Smoke from the west and northern wildfires blanketed the city in a haze and caused poor air quality along the East Coast.
Drought in California is a routine part of the summer — but climate change has supercharged it. Lake Oroville, the second-largest reservoir in the state, was at 35 percent capacity in June.
The Sierra Nevada mountain range is now home to abnormal snowmelt. Faster melts mean less water in reservoirs to carry desert-dwellers through the hottest months of the year.
Devastating floods struck Belgium, the Netherlands, and Germany in July. NASA’s Earth Observatory documented the Roer River in the Netherlands before and after water levels rose.
The historic heatwave that struck the Pacific Northwest in June caused wildfires that were visible from satellite.
Read more stories about the climate crisis here.
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