Union of Concerned Scientists4 min readAmerican Government
For Years, the Federal Workforce Languished. Congress is Planning to Revive It
During a House subcommittee hearing on Tuesday, congressional leaders and a panel of experts examined the state of the federal workforce—and talked through plans to bolster and protect civil servants in the coming years. To kick off the discussion, C
Union of Concerned Scientists4 min readPoverty & Homelessness
Renewable Energy Technology is Not Fully Helping Communities That Need it Most
In the United States, renewable energy technology, like solar cells, is still mostly utilized by white populations when data show that communities of color are impacted most negatively by fossil fuel pollution and climate change.
Union of Concerned Scientists3 min readNature
To Save Its Soil and Clean Up Its Water, Iowa Needs to Act Fast(er)
Iowans have long prized their state’s deep, rich soils and its position as an agricultural powerhouse. In the heart of the Corn Belt, its farmers lead the nation in corn acres planted, and come in second in soybean acres. But there’s a dark side to a
Union of Concerned Scientists5 min read
Diablo Canyon cerrará. ¿Está preparada California?
La red eléctrica de California está cargada de retos. A lo largo de todo el año está presente el riesgo de que chispazos salidos de los cables originen incendios descontrolados. También existe la posibilidad real de que una ola de calor extremo oblig
Union of Concerned Scientists5 min readNature
Diablo Canyon is Shutting Down. Is California Ready?
In this moment, California’s electrical grid faces no shortage of challenges. There’s the year-round risk that utility power lines will spark wildfires, and there’s the real possibility that an extreme summer heatwave will trigger more rotating black
Union of Concerned Scientists3 min read
President Biden’s Science Policies Are…Good, Actually. And That’s Worth Celebrating.
As an interdisciplinary conservation scientist, I spent a lot of time thinking about the proper role of science in advising and informing government decisionmaking. While scientists don’t know everything and science can’t solve every problem, relying
Union of Concerned Scientists4 min read
El Vórtice Polar Ha Matado A 24 En Texas Hasta Ahora. ¿De Quién Es La Culpa?
Mientras observamos que la mayor parte del país se ve afectada por este vórtice polar, reflexionamos si el cambio climático tiene algo que ver con él y si es más probable que ocurran estos eventos extremos en el futuro. Estamos paralizados ante las i
Union of Concerned Scientists4 min read
The Polar Vortex Has Killed 24 in Texas So Far. Who’s to Blame?
As we watch most of the country being taken over by this polar vortex, we ponder whether climate change has anything to do with it, and if these extreme events will be more likely to happen in the future. We are transfixed at images coming from Texas
Union of Concerned Scientists6 min readNature
Power Outages in Texas and California Have Less in Common than You Think
Chances are that you’ve already heard about the ongoing power outages in Texas and other nearby states. If you haven’t gotten the message already, the situation is dire and totally unprecedented. In the midst of a historic cold snap, electricity dema
Union of Concerned Scientists7 min readNature
As The US Rejoins The Paris Agreement, What’s Next On The Road To COP26?
On Feb 19th, the United States will officially be back in the Paris Agreement, thirty days after President Biden signed a declaration to rejoin the agreement on his first day in office. The President has clearly signaled to the world that climate cha
Union of Concerned Scientists10 min readAmerican Government
500,000 US COVID-19 Deaths and Counting: A Shameful Public Health Failure
Our nation’s failed response to COVID-19 should long perforate our pomposity about being the greatest nation on earth.
Union of Concerned Scientists5 min read
Polar Vortex Power Outages: 6 Things to Know about Supply, Demand, and our Electricity Future
The Polar Vortex hitting much of the US has wreaked havoc not just on roadways and airports, but also on our electricity systems, as plenty are experiencing first-hand right now. Past performance is no indication of what’s going to be coming at us. W
Union of Concerned Scientists1 min readCookbooks, Food, & Wine
Tyson Foods Wants to Be Our Valentine. Thanks, But No Thanks.
In the latest weird 2021 moment,* meat and poultry giant Tyson Foods is running a marketing campaign involving chicken nuggets arranged into freakish bouquets for Valentine’s Day. Here at the Union of Concerned Scientists, we have some thoughts about
Union of Concerned Scientists3 min readNature
Will Oregon Join the Race to 100% Clean Energy?
Climate change touches on so many parts of our lives, and the impacts of climate change have been especially devastating over the past year. But there are some signs of hope – like what’s happening in Oregon. This year, Oregon’s legislature has the o
Union of Concerned Scientists3 min readNature
BP and Shell Must Leave the American Petroleum Institute: Here’s Why
For decades, the American Petroleum Institute (API) has been a powerful force against US action on climate change. Representing the interests of its oil and gas company members, API has a long and ugly history of spreading disinformation on climate s
Union of Concerned Scientists4 min read
This Valentine’s Day is Time To Ask If Your Utility Has a Commitment Problem
Perhaps one of the most over-used Hollywood clichés is the non-committal partner. Sadly, electric utilities across the United States seem to have fallen in the same trope.
Union of Concerned Scientists2 min readAmerican Government
Black History Is American History
Black History Month in 2021 is particularly significant, although in a perfect world, people would be acknowledged and recognized for their contributions all year, not at specifically designated times. Black history IS American history, everyone shou
Union of Concerned Scientists6 min readTechnology & Engineering
Ask a Scientist: Electric Vehicles are the Cleanest Option Today
“There is certainly a lot of hype about electric vehicles,” UCS supporter Terry S. wrote. “If electricity production were 100 percent renewable, then electric vehicles would be a big step in reducing carbon dioxide emissions. But transitioning to ele
Union of Concerned Scientists5 min read
Has Consumers Energy Found a Loophole in its Clean Energy Pledge?
Despite promises to go clean, Consumers Energy is looking to buy a gas plant. But there are far better options that are more flexible, will probably cost less, and don’t saddle customers with the unnecessary risk associated with investing in gas-fire
Union of Concerned Scientists4 min readAmerican Government
Forging Equitable Scientist-Community Partnerships for Citizen Science Projects
In 2014, I met Shaun Crawford at a Science for Action conference in New Orleans. With similar goals for our communities, we struck up a partnership, realizing science had to converge with civic action and community organizing to affect real change. W
Union of Concerned Scientists5 min read
We Need To Put An End To Selling Utility Customer Debt
The energy burden is a major problem in the US. In fact, about one in three families living in the United States can’t afford to pay their electric bills. Utilities and regulators account for this shortage and all those unpaid utility bills become ‘b
Union of Concerned Scientists7 min readMedical
Roundup: As COVID-19 Situation Worsens, Election Results Offer Hope
In the fourth quarter of 2020, the spread of COVID-19 worsened but the Trump administration continued to sideline science. Joe Biden’s victory in the presidential election provided hope that a new administration will use science more effectively to m
Union of Concerned Scientists3 min readAmerican Government
The Scientific Integrity Act’s Reintroduction
Last week, the Biden administration released a presidential memorandum to begin the process of strengthening scientific integrity and evidence-based decisionmaking. This week, Congress will get its chance to play a role in bringing science back to th
Union of Concerned Scientists5 min readNature
California Energy: One Grid Under Too Many Assumptions
California’s energy grid is essentially a very complicated group project. But much like a group project in school, California is much more likely to meet its goal of a reliable, decarbonized energy grid if everyone actually participates and collabora
Union of Concerned Scientists4 min readCookbooks, Food, & Wine
Questions for a Once-and-Future Agriculture Secretary
The last time the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) got a new leader, I was decidedly unimpressed. Okay, understatement…I was incensed by a secretary who cared little for science and was fully in the pocket of big agribusinesses (looking at you, Do
Union of Concerned Scientists5 min readAmerican Government
Hundreds of Scientists Lost at the EPA During Past Four Years
Today, we released an analysis that investigated the loss or gain of scientific experts across multiple science-based federal agencies during the past four years. One thing was clear from the analysis—the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) took a
Union of Concerned Scientists5 min readAmerican Government
Federal Agencies Have Lost Hundreds of Scientists Since 2017. What Comes Next?
First, the bad news: An analysis by the Union of Concerned Scientists reveals that federal agencies like the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) have lost hundreds of scientists since 2017. The good news: With th
Union of Concerned Scientists3 min readTechnology & Engineering
Press Releases Alone Aren’t Going to Clean Up Cars and Trucks
General Motors recently announced that the company “aspires to eliminate tailpipe emissions from new light-duty vehicles by 2035.” Many in the press were quick to credit GM for this announcement, but it’s important to remember that aspirations are on
Union of Concerned Scientists2 min readNature
Scientific Integrity, Climate Action and Environmental Justice, Oh My! Science Activists Be Proud!
Wednesday, January 27, 2021 was an extraordinary day for the role of science in our government and for science advocacy advocates across the country. President Biden issued Executive Orders and Presidential Memoranda that will change the course of go
Union of Concerned Scientists3 min readNature
Outgoing Administration Gave Thumbs Up to Migratory Bird Massacre. It’s Time to Reverse the Damage.
On January 7, the outgoing administration changed the legal interpretation of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act so that the Fish and Wildlife can no longer hold industries accountable for the “incidental” killing of migratory bird species. It will go int
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