Did global warming cause Hurricane Harvey?

Dear EarthTalk: Was Hurricane Harvey caused by global warming?

Tom Dell

Bern, N.C.


The short answer is no. No single hurricane or weather event can be directly linked to the general phenomena known as climate change. 

“Climate change does not cause things, because climate change is not a causal agent,” writes David Roberts on www.Vox.com. “‘Climate change’ is a descriptive term — it describes the fact that the climate is changing.”

How did Bloomberg become so green?

Dear EarthTalk: Since when did Michael Bloomberg become a great environmentalist?

Jackie Miller

New York, N.Y.


Michael Bloomberg was primarily known as a financier and media tycoon long before he became one of the most beloved mayors in New York City history. But what most people still don’t know about Bloomberg is that he is fast becoming one of the world’s great environmentalists through his work to hasten the transition to renewable energy and mitigate the effects of climate change.

Training people to become activists and climate advocates

Dear EarthTalk: What exactly is Al Gore’s Climate Reality Project and how does it work to train activists?

Kelly G.

Washington, D.C.


The Climate Reality Project (CRP) is a non-profit, launched in 2011 by Nobel laureate and former U.S. Vice President Al Gore to address climate change, following up on the release of his influential book and documentary film “An Inconvenient Truth.” 

Climate-affected evolution

Dear EarthTalk: Could global warming really be a factor in the evolution of wildlife species?


Camden, N.J.


No doubt the quickly changing climate is already triggering various evolutionary shifts in a wide range of species. And while we can’t be sure just how different wildlife species will adapt (or not), scientists are already noticing some surprising changes as a result of rising surface and ocean temperatures thanks to human-induced global warming. 

Canada has a new Food Guide: how has it changed?

Dear EarthTalk: How does Canada’s newly released “Food Guide” differ from the food recommendations offered up by the U.S. government?

J. Wheeler

Albany, N.Y.


These days, many countries around the world produce food guidelines periodically to help improve nutrition and encourage healthy lifestyles among their populaces. 

Instagram? It’s more like ‘Instagreen,’ am I right?

Dear EarthTalk: How are environmentalists using Instagram to further their causes?

Jason McNeil

What’s wrong with soaps?

Dear EarthTalk: Why do antibacterial soaps and other products with triclosan get such a bad rap from health and environmental advocates?

Wanda Caravan

Hartford, Conn.


Plastic waste put to good use

Dear EarthTalk: What are some ways companies are using plastic waste from the ocean in their products to take a stand for the environment?

Simone LaTourneau



Volvo’s embrace of electric cars — the beginning of the end of the gasoline-powered internal combustion engine?

Dear EarthTalk: Does Volvo’s embrace of electric cars signal the beginning of the end of the gas-powered internal combustion engine?

Macy Vigneault

New Orleans, La.


Volvo has announced that it will only sell hybrid and electric cars beginning in 2019, signaling a shift in the auto industry as a whole toward more fuel-efficient cars that can help reduce drivers’ carbon footprints and fuel costs.

Grizzly bears in Yellowstone

Dear EarthTalk: Is the federal government’s decision to take Yellowstone’s grizzlies off of the endangered species list good news or bad news for the iconic bear?

Jeffrey Elder

Los Angeles, Calif.


It depends on whom you ask. The majority of environmental and wildlife advocates would prefer to keep endangered species protections in place for Yellowstone’s grizzlies, which they consider to be still at risk.