Global warming

The climate legacy of Justice Stevens

Retired Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens testifies before a Senate panel in 2014. Photo: Allison Shelley/Getty Images

Retired Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens, who died yesterday at age 99, wrote the landmark 5-4 decision in 2007 that clearly gave EPA the power to regulate GHG emissions.

Why it matters: EPA began acting on that authority during the Obama years. Major rules include emissions standards for cars and power plants, which the Trump administration is weakening.

Developing hurricane threatens New Orleans levees

Computer model simulation of water vapor and winds in developing Hurricane Barry
Computer model simulation of water vapor and winds in developing Hurricane Barry on July 12. Credit: Earth Simulator

A developing storm in the north-central Gulf of Mexico, which is expected to become a hurricane by Saturday, threatens to unleash one of the worst flood events in New Orleans' history this weekend.

The big picture: Because the storm, to be named Barry, is lumbering off the coast, it's pulling copious amounts of moisture from the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico and is poised to direct it like a firehose at Louisiana and Mississippi. The Mississippi River is already so high in the New Orleans area that heavy rain plus a storm surge could overtop the cities' river levees for the first time, flooding large parts of the city.