The Phoenix

It’s time the U.S. government made it official: We’re in the midst of a major crisis, and we need to act now

Photo: Mario Tama/Getty Images

Future Human is partnering with The Phoenix, a newsletter by climate reporter and meteorologist Eric Holthaus. Every two weeks, we’ll feature new stories about climate science, justice, and radical change. As Eric says, we were born at just the right time to change everything. Subscribe here.

We are at a critical moment in the entirety of human history

According to NASA data, last year was the hottest year in modern record-keeping — and probably the hottest our planet has been since agriculture was invented about 12,000 years ago. …


The Phoenix

White nationalism gave us the climate emergency. Now, it’s our biggest obstacle.

Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images

Future Human is partnering with The Phoenix, a newsletter by climate reporter and meteorologist Eric Holthaus. Every two weeks, we’ll feature new stories about climate science, justice, and radical change. As Eric says, we were born at just the right time to change everything. Subscribe here.

We all watched in horror this week as hate-filled people marched into the core of our country’s most sacred spaces.

This seditious act wasn’t a spontaneous lapse of security or the flailing throes of a defeated president. It was a calculated attack on our shared future.

2020 was the hottest year in recorded history…


If you want to make climate justice part of your New Year’s resolutions, here are some things to get you started

Original art for The Phoenix by Laila Arêde

Future Human is partnering with The Phoenix, a newsletter by climate reporter and meteorologist Eric Holthaus. Every two weeks, we’ll feature new stories about climate science, justice, and radical change. As Eric says, we were born at just the right time to change everything. Subscribe here.

Our time here on this beautiful planet is so temporary.

If there’s anything that 2020 taught us, it’s that while time is fleeting for everyone, it’s the way society is structured that determines how fleeting it is and for whom. …


We’ve run out of letters to name our storms, and entered a brand-new, catastrophic era

A NOAA GOES-East satellite handout image of Hurricane Dorian (Cat. 5 storm) tracking towards the Florida taken Sept 1, 2019.
A NOAA GOES-East satellite handout image of Hurricane Dorian (Cat. 5 storm) tracking towards the Florida taken Sept 1, 2019.
Photo: NOAA/Getty Images

On Friday, one of the most remarkable moments in recent meteorological history opened a window to our future.

A strengthening swirl of clouds spinning in the central Atlantic earned the name Tropical Storm Wilfred — exhausting the list of 21 alphabetical names given to Atlantic tropical cyclones by the Miami-based National Hurricane Center on the earliest date in history. And then Subtropical Storm Alpha was born off the coast of Portugal. At the same time, a “‘”medicane” — a Mediterranean hurricane — was approaching the Greek islands. And then, just a few hours later and 6,000 miles away, Tropical Storm…


Climate change will force more people to leave their homes than at any other point in human history. Conflict is inevitable.

Photo: Aliraza Khatri’s Photography/Moment/Getty Images

The 30 years from 2020 to 2050 will be among the most transformative decades in all of human history. Collapsing ice sheets, the aerosol crisis, and rising sea levels will force more people to leave their homes than at any other point in human history. In some places, that means conflict is inevitable.

A study from researchers at the University of California at Berkeley found that higher temperatures and shifting patterns of extreme weather can cause a rise in all types of violence, from domestic abuse to civil wars. …


The Correspondent’s Climate correspondent, Eric Holthaus. Photo: Lise Straatsma/The Correspondent

Our new Climate correspondent explains why he’s joining The Correspondent

When I became a scientist, I never intended to study climate.

When I started studying climate, I never intended to become a journalist.

When I became a journalist, I never thought I’d have an opportunity like this.

That’s what this moment in history requires of us: to be open to re-examining our expectations and to prepare for as-of-yet unimaginable opportunities for a better future.

For too long, our conversations about the climate emergency have been filled with blinding denial, existential dread and the inevitability of disaster. …


Image: NOAA

After a rare period of extremely rapid intensification, the National Hurricane Center has upgraded Hurricane Matthew to a Category 5—the top level of the Saffir-Simpson scale. Data from what was surely a harrowing Hurricane Hunter flight on Friday evening confirmed that Matthew now has sustained winds of approximately 160 miles per hour.

From the National Hurricane Center’s description of a Category 5 hurricane:

Catastrophic damage will occur: A high percentage of framed homes will be destroyed, with total roof failure and wall collapse. Fallen trees and power poles will isolate residential areas. Power outages will last for weeks to possibly…

Eric Holthaus

Meteorologist | Climate correspondent

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