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AP
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Nearly a week after Hurricane Ian smashed into Florida and left carved a path of destruction that reached into the Carolinas, more than half a million statewide residents are facing another day without electricity. More than 500,000 homes and businesses remained without power Tuesday in Florida and it will be the weekend before most power is restored. And Ian still is not done. Officials warned there still was the potential of coastal flooding from Long Island south to North Carolina’s Outer Banks where the only highway to the barrier islands was closed by sand and seawater. Seventy-eight deaths have been blamed on Ian, with 71 of them reported in Florida.

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As California’s drought deepens, more rural communities are running out of water. Heavy pumping is depleting groundwater supplies that aren’t being replenished by rain and snowmelt. More than 1,200 wells have run dry this year statewide, a nearly 50% increase over the same period last year, according to state data. The groundwater crisis is most severe in the San Joaquin Valley, the country’s most productive agricultural region, where farmers rely more heavily on groundwater because they aren’t getting much water from the state’s depleted reservoirs.

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Water levels are low at San Luis Reservoir, which stores irrigation water for San Joaquin Valley farms, in Gustine, Calif., Sept. 14, 2022. As climate change brings hotter temperatures and more severe droughts, cities and states around the world are facing water shortages as lakes and rivers dry up. (AP Photo/Terry Chea)

AP
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Beachgoers walk past a collapsed boardwalk and seawall, Monday, Oct. 3, 2022, in Daytona Beach Shores, Fla., as hotel and condo seawalls and decks along the Volusia County coastline were gutted by Hurricane Ian last week. (Joe Burbank/Orlando Sentinel via AP)

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As authorities in Florida try to reach people who have been trapped by floodwaters or isolated on barrier islands since Hurricane Ian came ashore last week, concerned members of the public have been springing into action to aid the official rescue efforts. One such group, Project Dynamo, has rescued more than 20 people, many of them elderly residents who became cut off when the Category 4 storm washed away a bridge connecting the Florida mainland with Sanibel Island, a crescent-shaped sliver of sand popular with tourists that was home to about 7,000 residents. Others have joined in the rescue efforts, using boats, paddleboards, jet skis and other resources to find people stranded by floodwaters or cut off by damage.

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Residents living in parts of central Florida donned fishing waders, boots and bug spray and canoed or kayaked their way to their homes on streets where floodwaters continued rising Sunday despite it being four days since Hurricane Ian tore through the state. The waters flooded homes and streets that had been passable just a day or two earlier. Ben Bertat found 4 inches of water in his house by Lake Harney off North Jungle street in a rural part of Seminole County north of Orlando after kayaking to it Sunday morning. Only a day earlier, there had been no water.

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The lights are out at a coal-fired power plant in northwestern New Mexico that has provided electricity to millions of people across the southwestern U.S. for nearly a half-century. The closure of the San Juan Generating Station follows years of legal battles by environmentalists and mounting regulatory pressures aimed at curbing pollution and climate change. The realities of closing the plant and the adjacent mine are now setting in for surrounding communities, many of which are home to Native Americans. Hundreds of good-paying jobs are evaporating along with tens of millions of dollars in annual tax revenue that's used to fund local schools.

AP
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FILE - King Charles III arrives to thank emergency service workers for their work and support ahead of the funeral of Queen Elizabeth II at the Metropolitan Police Service Special Operations Room in London, Saturday, Sept. 17, 2022. King Charles III has decided not to attend the international climate change summit COP27 taking place on Nov. 16-18 in Egypt, fueling speculation that the new monarch will have to rein in his environmental activism now that he has ascended the throne. (AP Photo/Christophe Ena, File)

AP
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Sunday is election day in Brazil. In the Amazon region, many Indigenous people live days away from the nearest town where there is a voting center. But the nation addressed that challenge years ago, thanks in large part to Indigenous advocate Bruno Pereira, who was murdered earlier this year. Pereira created a system for voting machines to travel to Indigenous villages, rather than vice versa, after an infamous incident where Indigenous voters were stranded on a riverbank for weeks with insufficient gasoline to motor their boats home, and many got sick. Some died. Today that system continues, with election officials using light aircraft and helicopters to reach remote villages.

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This Sept. 20, 2022 image shows Albert Gonzales monitoring pollution control systems during the final week of operations at the San Juan Generating Station near Waterflow, New Mexico. Gonzales, 70, worked 40 years for Public Service Co. of New Mexico, the utility that ran the coal-fired power plant. (AP Photo/Susan Montoya Bryan)