The 2017 hurricane season was one of the most intense and unpredictable on record. The 2018 season officially begins on June 1, only a couple months after the release of a proposal to cut the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s budget by nearly 25 percent.
This week, a new Florida law prohibits local governments from passing laws designed to protect the public’s access to beaches, the line dividing the arid part of the country from the moister part is moving eastward, and metro Atlanta residents spend over $10,000 a year on driving-related expenses.
An abundance of asphalt and concrete increases air temperatures locally, which can exacerbate the effects of heat waves and generally cause unpleasant conditions. This is known as the urban heat island effect and it can be true for both sprawled suburbs and dense cities. Savannah’s beautiful green spaces offer a prime example of how the benefits of dense development can be achieved while mitigating or eliminating the urban heat island effect.
While Atlanta is experiencing a wetter-than-average year, northern Georgia is experiencing severe to extreme drought conditions. This is just one example of how conditions in one part of the state may not be indicative of the larger local or regional climate. The new SustainAtlanta Weather+Climate page is dedicated to giving readers a better understanding of how the day-to-day weather fits into the overall regional climate picture.
The first half of 2017 was far and away the hottest such time period of any year in 123 years of record keeping in the Southeast. Don’t let a lack of heat waves or a senator with a snowball deflect from the overwhelming evidence of a global and regional warming trend.