C2ES Releases New Extreme Weather Map on Eve of Senate Climate Hearing

Press Release
July 31, 2012
Contact: Laura Rehrmann, 703-516-0621, press@c2es.org

C2ES Releases New Extreme Weather Map on Eve of Senate Climate Hearing

The Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (C2ES) has created a new online map providing an overview of extreme U.S. weather events since 1990. The map highlights examples of extreme heat, heavy precipitation, drought, and wildfire — four types of events with clear trends connected to climate change.

In a blog post announcing the new map, C2ES science and policy fellow Dan Huber summarizes the recent run of extreme weather:

  • The last 12 months were the hottest on record for the lower 48 states by a significant margin. The “Summer in March” heat wave broke thousands of heat records across the country.
  • Almost as soon as the spring heat subsided, wildfires sprang up in the West, with New Mexico’s largest wildfire on record and Colorado’s most damaging fire occurring within weeks of each other.
  • The United States is mired in the most extensive drought since 1956. Nearly two-thirds of the contiguous U.S. is currently in drought and 75 percent of that area is categorized as severe. Last year, Texas had its most severe drought ever, resulting in billions of dollars in agricultural losses.

“Climate change is elevating the risk of extreme weather,” writes Huber. “It’s crucial that we take stock of what each disaster teaches us so that we understand the rising risks and are better prepared for what’s to come.”

The science behind climate change will be the focus of a hearing tomorrow (Wednesday, Aug. 1) before the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee titled “Update on the Latest Climate Change Science and Local Adaptation Measures.” The hearing, set for 10 a.m. in 406 Dirksen, is the Senate’s first in this Congress focusing directly on climate change science.


Contact Senior Communications Manager Laura Rehrmann at press@c2es.org to arrange an interview with a C2ES expert.

About C2ES: The Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (C2ES) is an independent non-profit, non-partisan organization promoting strong policy and action to address the twin challenges of energy and climate change. Launched in November 2011, C2ES is the successor to the Pew Center on Global Climate Change.