Energy and Environment Reporting for Texas

Latest Posts

When Can A Big Storm Or Drought Be Blamed On Climate Change?

Nowadays, when there’s a killer heat wave or serious drought somewhere, people wonder: Is this climate change at work? It’s a question scientists have struggled with for years. And now there’s a new field of research that’s providing some answers. It’s called “attribution science” — a set of principles that allow scientists to determine when […]

Climate Change Clouds Future of El Niño Forecasting

In Central Texas, where water reservoirs sit at under 40 percent capacity, all eyes are on watch for El Niño, a global weather phenomenon that generally brings generous rain to the area. The National Weather Service predicts an 80 percent chance of a weak to moderate El Niño this fall, dampening hopes for a season […]

Seem Hazy in Central Texas? It’s All Saharan Dust in the Wind

Some Texans have been able to enjoy exceptional sunsets this week as billions of tiny grains of dust from afar traverses our skies. A dusty drifter from 6,500 miles away — a giant mass of super-fine sediment and dry air from the Sahara Desert — is visiting Central Texas this week. Saharan dust blows across the Caribbean […]

West Texas Seeing ‘Driest Such Period in Over a Century’

Conditions ‘Remain Dire,’ Outlook Says The drought that began in October 2010 has been the driest such period in over a century for much of West Texas, putting it on par with the drought of record in the 1950s. That’s according to a new outlook from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and it […]

Why We Could See More Cold Snaps in a Warming World

As Central and South Texas see ice, sleet and freezes for the second time in a week, climate change skeptics have taken to Twitter to express their disbelief: Y’all know how I know #GlobalWarming (aka #ClimateChange) isn’t real!? In Texas, we’re getting snow & ice w/ in hours of 80 degree weather. — Ydur (@YdurZatara) […]

Dreaming of a White Christmas in Texas? Keep Dreaming

The winter weather came a little too early for Texas this year. Just a few weeks ago, an ice storm knocked out power for over 800,000 people in North Texas. But the forecasts are saying pretty much all of Texas has a practically zero chance for a “White Christmas” this year. Forecasting from historical records, the […]

Why It Takes a Lot of Snow To Equal a Small Amount of Rain

Texas is seeing its first real winter storm this weekend, and already parts of the Panhandle are seeing trace amounts of snow. Snow is welcome precipitation for a part of the state that is still struggling with extreme drought. But it takes a lot of snow to have the same effect as just a small […]

All Signs Point to Strong Hurricane Season

Tomorrow marks the beginning of the six-month Atlantic hurricane season, and forecasters think it might be a doozy. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) predicts this coming season will produce more than 13 named storms. An average season produces 12, but the amount of hurricanes and major hurricanes is predicted to be above average as […]

Outlook Calls for Texas Drought to Continue Into Summer

Thunderstorms soaked swaths of Texas yesterday and could bring more today, but Texas’ longterm weather forecast is saturated with unsettling news. The National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Quarterly Climate Impacts and Outlook summary of Texas weather is a grim reminder that Texas needs far more than a few strong storms. Here are some of the more interesting findings from the study: […]

New Hurricane Outlook Shows Increased Chance of Storms

Texas finds itself in the peculiar position of needing just the right storms this summer. Perhaps a light tropical depression that would bring rain to the parched parts of the state, but not bring damage to the coast. So it’s with a keen eye that the state looks to the updated summer hurricane forecast out […]

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