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New tax incentives ease home improvements to beat the heat

Jul 19, 2023
Expanded tax credits in the Inflation Reduction Act help pay for weatherizing homes and installing heat pumps.
Heat pumps are among the energy-conserving tools that new tax credits will partially cover.
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As extreme heat lingers, millions of U.S. households face a utility shutoff crisis

Jul 7, 2023
And it's leaving some people without the electricity to power a fan or air conditioner during intense heat waves.
Utilities cut power to at least 3 million customers who missed payments last year and shutoffs happen most often in the summer, according to research from University of Pennsylvania and Indiana University.
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Risk of electricity shortages rises with extreme heat waves

Jun 28, 2023
Supply shortfall caused by spiking demand during extreme summer weather could affect two-thirds of the U.S.
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Hybrid work adds strain to power grids during heat wave

Sep 6, 2022
The lights and the AC are on in offices and living rooms, challenging energy systems amid record temperatures.
California's electric grid operator has asked residents to save power by shutting off their air conditioning in the late afternoon and evening during the ongoing heat wave.
Patrick T. Fallon/AFP via Getty Images

"We just can't function in the same way": Extreme heat and worker productivity

Aug 19, 2022
Extreme heat isn't just uncomfortable. It can hurt workers' health and make them prone to errors, one expert says.
The threshold where heat starts to really affect how well people can focus and work is roughly 90 degrees, says Amir Jina at the University of Chicago.
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Biden administration launches Heat.gov as extreme heat becomes more common

Aug 1, 2022
The government also boosts funding for a FEMA program to help communities prepare for extreme heat and other climate-related disasters.
While the government is taking steps to address the impacts of extreme heat, climate experts worry that the problem could worsen.
Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Cities respond to rising heat ... with new hires

Jul 25, 2022
A few cities are hiring what's known as a "chief heat officer."
Tourists take selfies of themselves with popsicles during a heat wave in front of the Lincoln Memorial on July 22 in Washington, D.C.
Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images

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Extreme heat is driving up demand for natural gas, along with prices

Jul 22, 2022
Nearly 40% of U.S. electricity is generated by natural gas, so when millions of air conditioners are turned on, prices rise.
With large swaths of the U.S. under excessive heat warnings this week, Americans are blasting their air conditioners, which can increase electricity bills.
Brandon Bell/Getty Images

Extreme heat is becoming more common. Should tenants have a right to air conditioning?

Jun 14, 2022
There are many more laws and programs to help low-income people stay warm in the winter than cool in the summer.
Above, temperatures reached 114º F in of El Centro, California on June 12. Much of the South and West have been grappling with a heat wave, underscoring how air conditioning is becoming increasingly necessary.
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Workers face blistering temperatures again, with little federal protection

Jun 10, 2022
The Biden Administration ordered OSHA to draw up workplace heat standards. How soon will they be in place?
Farmworkers and other laborers could suffer in this weekend's heat wave.
Frederic J. Brown/AFP via Getty Images