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Trees crashed onto cars and into streets during storms in Chicago on Aug. 10, 2020. (Patty Wetli / WTTW News)

As Chicago gets ready for cooler weather, many parts of the country are being hit by wildfires, hurricanes and the aftermath of last month’s destructive derecho. We learn more with atmospheric scientist Scott Collis.

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A scene from the documentary “Seasons of Change on Henry’s Farm.” (Seasons of Change on Henry’s Farm / Facebook)

Ines Sommer’s documentary “Seasons of Change on Henry’s Farm” shows that climate change is knocking on the door. But that’s not what the movie was supposed to be about. 

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Temperatures hit 94 degrees, a record for June 2. (Pixabay)

The mercury soared to 94 degrees on June 2, topping the previous record of 92 degrees set for the date back in 1944.

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A record breaking hole in the ozone above the Arctic has closed. (Anita Ritenour / Flickr)

No pandemic silver lining here, but the good news is that healthier ozone levels mean an uncommonly strong and stubborn polar vortex is finally loosening its grip.

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The University of Illinois at Chicago Circle (now UIC) was a hub for the first Earth Day. (Courtesy UIC archives)

Chicago was a hub for environmental activism on the first Earth Day, and it remains a pioneer today.

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(Daniel Dionne / Flickr)

We discuss the history of Earth Day and the environmental challenges the planet is facing today with Denis Hayes, the organizer of the very first event in 1970, and local environmental activist Kim Wasserman.

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April 22 marks the 50th anniversary of Earth Day. (qimono / Pixabay)

Environmental organizations have had to scale back plans for the 50th anniversary of Earth Day. Get ready for lots of livestreams and calls for digital action this week. Here’s a sampling of what’s on offer.

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Picking up litter while jogging or walking — also known as “plogging” — is a great solo Earth Day activity. (Visit Viljandi / Flickr)

In the midst of the coronavirus outbreak, we’re going to have to clean up the planet individually. Creative ideas from the Earth Day Network include “plogging” and #TrashTag.

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Opponents of the Dakota Access Pipeline expansion held a protest ahead of an ICC hearing. (Patty Wetli / WTTW)

Lawyers began presenting evidence Thursday as the Illinois Commerce Commission weighs a petition to double the throughput of the controversial Dakota Access pipeline, which runs through the state.

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(Monty and Rose / Facebook)

Remember those endangered piping plovers that captured Chicagoans’ hearts? They’re back — as the stars of the documentary “Monty and Rose,” screening this month during the One Earth Film Festival.

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(Nick Normal / Flickr)

Small actions can add up to meaningful change in the race to avert a climate crisis. But Chicago is lagging when it comes to some of the simplest solutions.

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Maple syrup is bottled piping hot in the Funks Grove fishing room. The Funks say the hot liquid sanitizes the container. (Evan Garcia / WTTW News)

For generations, a small family business has relied on predictable weather patterns to produce thousands of gallons of maple syrup each year. But climate change is now threatening the industry – and filling the family with uncertainty about the future.

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Humans are great at solving immediate problems, less so ones that feel distant. (Credit: Neil Moralee, left, Anna Maria Liljestrand / Flickr)

Humans are great problem-solvers, but climate change doesn’t feel urgent enough, say behavioral scientists. They’re trying to figure out how to change that.

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In just the years since the Paris climate accord was adopted, Chase has pumped nearly $200 billion into the fossil fuel industry. (Thomas Hawk / Flickr)

JP Morgan Chase announced this week it will throw its financial weight behind the transition to a “low-carbon economy,” but environmental activists say that doesn’t make up for the damage the firm’s lending practices have already wrought on the planet.

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Karenna Gore, founder of the Center for Earth Ethics, will appear in Chicago next week as part of a forum on climate change. (Center for Earth Ethics / Facebook)

The daughter of former Vice President Al Gore is founder of the Center for Earth Ethics, which frames the environmental crisis in moral terms. She tells us about her work ahead of her appearance this week at a climate change forum in Chicago.

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The installation “Come Hell or High Water” by British artist Michael Pinsky shows a fleet of semi-submerged cars in the River Tyne in 2006. Today, scientists expect increased flooding due to climate change. (Akuppa John Wigham / Flickr)

City Council approved a climate emergency resolution Wednesday, but no specific actions are on the horizon.