Climate Change & Environment
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European court decision shows that safe climate is a human right

Having a safe climate is becoming more of a human right globally with this week's European court decision that says countries must better protect people from climate change, something warming-hit residents of the Global South long knew, said former Ireland President Mary Robinson.

Robinson, who was the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, praised Tuesday's mixed court decision as precedent-setting and change-triggering. The European Court of Human Rights sided with Swiss senior women saying their government wasn't doing enough to protect them from climate shocks, but dismissed similar complaints from Portuguese youth and France's mayor on technical grounds.

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Climate change's economic bite will hit about $38 trillion a year by 2049

Climate change will reduce future global income by about 19% in the next 25 years compared to a fictional world that's not warming, with the poorest areas and those least responsible for heating the atmosphere taking the biggest monetary hit, a new study said.

Climate change's economic bite in how much people make is already locked in at about $38 trillion a year by 2049, according to Wednesday's study in the journal Nature by researchers at Germany's Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research. By 2100 the financial cost could hit twice what previous studies estimate.

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Here's why experts don't think cloud seeding played a role in Dubai's downpour

With cloud seeding, it may rain, but it doesn't really pour or flood — at least nothing like what drenched the United Arab Emirates and paralyzed Dubai, meteorologists said.

Cloud seeding, although decades old, is still controversial in the weather community, mostly because it has been hard to prove that it does very much. No one reports the type of flooding that on Tuesday doused the UAE, which often deploys the technology in an attempt to squeeze every drop of moisture from a sky that usually gives less than 4 or 5 inches (10 to 13 centimeters) of rain a year.

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UAE struggles to recover after heaviest recorded rainfall ever hits desert nation

The United Arab Emirates struggled Thursday to recover from the heaviest recorded rainfall ever to hit the desert nation, as its main airport worked to restore normal operations even as floodwater still covered portions of major highways and roads.

Dubai International Airport, the world's busiest for international travel, allowed global carriers on Thursday morning to again fly into Terminal 1 at the airfield.

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Indonesia evacuates thousands after volcano erupts, causes tsunami threat

Indonesian authorities closed an airport and residents left homes near an erupting volcano Thursday due to the dangers of spreading ash, falling rocks, hot volcanic clouds and the possibility of a tsunami.

Mount Ruang on the northern side of Sulawesi Island had at least five large eruptions Wednesday, causing the Center for Volcanology and Geological Disaster Mitigation to issue its highest level alert, indicating an active eruption.

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Parts of central US hit by severe storms, while tornadoes strike in Kansas and Iowa

Strong storms have caused damage in parts of the middle U.S. and spawned tornadoes in Kansas and Iowa, including one that left two people hurt.

An EF-1 tornado touched down shortly after 6 a.m. near the northeastern Kansas town of Richland, the National Weather Service said. The twister reached speeds of up to 100 mph (161 kph) and was on the ground for about 20 minutes, the service said.

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Tourists to Spain's Catalonia may soon see water restrictions in dry season

Spain's drought-stricken northeastern Catalonia is considering imposing water restrictions on tourists in the driest parts of the region if domestic consumption is not curtailed, the Catalan government said Tuesday.

The restriction of 100 liters (26 gallons) per tourist per day for hotels would go into effect if a municipality fails to keep domestic water use by residents below established limits for three consecutive months under the current "drought emergency" for Catalonia, officials said.

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Asian Americans, Pacific Islanders in US more likely to believe in climate change

Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders in the United States are more likely than the overall adult population to believe in human-caused climate change, according to a new poll. It also suggests that partisanship may not have as much of an impact on this group's environmental views, compared to Americans overall.

A recent poll from AAPI Data and The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research finds 84% of AAPI adults agree climate change exists. In comparison, 74% of U.S. adults hold the same sentiment. And three-quarters of AAPI adults who accept climate change is real attribute it entirely or mostly to human activity. Among the general U.S. adult population surveyed in an AP-NORC poll in September, only 61% say humans are causing it.

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Asian Champions League semifinal postponed in UAE after heavy rain flooding

The first leg of the Asian Champions League semifinal between Al-Ain of the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia's Al-Hilal has been postponed from Tuesday to Wednesday after torrential rain brought floods to the host country.

The Asian Football Confederation made the decision after thunderstorms pounded the UAE, flooding out portions of major highways and closing roads and bridges. The UAE's national federation had earlier called off all local football games.

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65 killed in Pakistan as April rain doubles historical average

Lightning and heavy rains led to 14 deaths in Pakistan, officials said Wednesday, bringing the death toll from four days of extreme weather to at least 63, as the heaviest downpour in decades flooded villages on the country's southwestern coast.

Most of the deaths were reported in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, in Pakistan's northwest bordering Afghanistan. Collapsing buildings have killed 32 people, including 15 children and five women, said Khursheed Anwar, a spokesman for the Disaster Management Authority. Dozens more were also injured in the northwest, where 1,370 houses were damaged, Anwar said.

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