Energy & Environment

Why it matters: Ominous forecasts about the impact of climate change serve as the backdrop for the world — led by U.S. lawmakers and companies — to debate big action on the problem, which could upend energy systems and our way of life.

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1.5 billion tons of water evaporates from the Colorado River

The waters of Lake Powell. Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

New research blames climate change for more than 1 billion tons of water that has evaporated from the Colorado River, the Washington Post reports.

What's happening: The findings published in Science on Thursday by the U.S. Geological Survey, show the annual flow of the West's vital river is declining due to warmer temperatures, comparable to the annual water consumption of 10 million Americans.

Sanders and Bloomberg split over fracking

Bloomberg, Warren and Sanders at the Las Vegas debate. Photo: Mario Tama/Getty Images

Tonight's Democratic primary debate in Las Vegas laid bare the candidates' differences over fracking as Bernie Sanders defended his push for an outright ban and challenged concerns that it could hurt Democrats politically.

Driving the news: NBC's Chuck Todd asked Sanders what he would tell workers in Pennsylvania, a swing state where natural gas extraction via fracking is a major industry. Todd cited this New York Times piece on the politics of fracking there.

Study: Methane gas emissions could be greater than previously known

Flaring natural gas burns by jack pumps at an oil well near Buford, North Dakota. Photo: William Campbell/Corbis via Getty Images

Greenhouse gas emissions from methane, which largely originates from natural gas production and agriculture, have been underestimated by 25% to 40% compared to recent gauges, per a new study in the peer-reviewed journal Nature.

Why it matters: Methane gas is more potent than CO2 at trapping heat on a pound-for-pound basis in the short-term, which makes it an important factor to weigh as countries tackle global warming.

Go deeperArrowFeb 20, 2020 - Science
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