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Currently — June 29, 2021

The weather affects everyone, and it’s something that brings us all together. Currently is a weather service — a community of people sharing resources and delivering justice, hope, connection, safety, and resilience in a world in urgent need of systemic action.

The weather, currently.
The Pacific Northwest heatwave is finally peaking, especially at coastal cities like Portland, Seattle, and Vancouver. But inland and in the mountains, the heat will continue at obscene levels for a few more days.
It’s the region’s mountains that have had an essential and unique role in making this heat wave possible. Climate change is warming Earth’s entire troposphere — the lowest layer of the atmosphere where all our weather occurs. That’s particularly true in mountainous areas, where temperatures are rising even faster — with snow and ice receding or even disappearing from mountains as the Earth warms, the bare soil beneath can warm even faster. A 2015 study found that areas above 2000 meters (6500 feet) are warming about 75% faster than places at lower elevations.
These are the factors that helped the mountain town of Lytton, British Columbia become one of the hottest places in the world this week after recording an air temperature of 47.5°C (117.5°F) on Monday. Downstream of Lytton, flood warnings are in effect for the river valleys as sudden snow melt has created a torrent of rushing water.
Tuesday will likely be the hottest day in Canada’s history for a third day in a row — there’s an outside chance of reaching 50°C (122°F) in Lytton. No matter the final temperature, Lytton will be “the new Canadian benchmark for years” according to meteorologist Chris Scott. Lytton’s typical late June temperature is just 26°C (79°F), so this kind of weather is exceptionally unusual. — Eric Holthaus
What you need to know, currently.
Orion Magazine | The Nature of Plastics
Orion Magazine and Beyond Plastic are hosting a four part series on plastic pollution, edited by environmental sociologist Rebecca Altman.
Currently spoke with Meera Subramanian, an environmental journalist who contributed her piece about the blurred lines between nature and what is deemed unnatural. Subramanian is speaking on a panel on Wednesday with the other authors in the series. 
“When you’re talking about plastics being so everywhere that they are going into the vascular system of plants that they’re in the air and water there’s no lifestyle choice that you choose that you can avoid them,” said Subramanian. “I think so much of the plastics conversation is kind of put on the consumer, and we all just know how false that is.”
Subramanian noted how intertwined the issue of climate and other pollutants are; she hopes that storytelling can help connect those dots.  
“There’s just so many angles of the story, but a lot of times the story is told in really sort of overly simplistic ways, like there’s a Garbage Patch we need to clean it up, instead of really trying to get at what it means to have this material in our lives in so many different complicated ways.” said Subramanian. “It’s just so intertwined with all of these conversations around what is causing climate change in terms of emissions and what’s generating those emissions as well.”
Join Beyond Plastics, Orion and the authors of the series on Wednesday at 1 pm ET to learn more: – Abbie Veitch
Beyond Plastics
Did you enjoy the @Orion_Magazine series on #plasticpollution? Join series editor @rebecca_altman next Weds, 6/30 at 1 PM ET for a meaty conversation with writers @Meeratweets @David_Farrier along w/ our president, @enckj and new Orion chief, @ingredient_x
Beyond the Promise of Plastic: How Storytelling Will Change the Future of Plastic — Beyond Plastics - Working To End Single-Use Plastic Pollution
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Today will be the hottest day in the history of the Pacific Northwest, again.

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