July 19, 2022

US Heat Waves Highlight Urgency of Tackling Climate Change, 350.org Demands Action from Biden


Oakland, CA –
Around the United States, the impacts of an extreme heatwave are being felt, and climate organization 350.org is demanding action. This heatwave has been supercharged by the climate crisis, and spurred on by the continued burning of fossil fuels. As temperatures soar, human life is being threatened, water supplies are threatened by drought, roads are melting, and climate caused fires and flooding closes national parks, and threatens their businesses.

This week Texas and the Central Plains are facing the hottest temperatures of the summer, with shattered heat records across the middle of the U.S., and nearly 35 million people in Texas and the Central Plains slammed with excessive heat warnings. Those from vulnerable communities are suffering the worst. As climate impacts are worsening, politicians are backsliding, and plans to address climate in the Senate have collapsed. Now it’s time for President Biden to finally act to curb fossil fuels, and use his influence to push the world to address the climate crisis that is costing trillions of dollars in losses.

May Boeve, Executive Director at 350.org, stated,
“The reason these heat waves are happening is because of the climate crisis, and the connection is clearer than ever between fossil fuel companies, their obscene profits, government inaction, and the drastic impact being felt by millions. This is the tip of the iceberg when it comes to extreme and unpredictable weather events, which are contributing to inflation by raising food prices, weakening our economy, wrecking the country and ruining the planet.

“This is not about a few random events, this is about regular extreme occurrences and life-threatening impacts, which are growing worse every year. We need to future-proof our workplaces and homes, and adjust our laws to adapt to this new, hotter reality in order to support those already suffering from the impacts of extreme weather. I call for President Biden to follow through on his climate pledges, and I urge climate activists who helped elect Biden to keep fighting for a rapid, just transition to a sustainable economy for all.”


Press Contact: Jason Kirkpatrick
Email: [email protected]

Background Notes for Editors;
Climate disruption and extreme weather events are costing the US economy trillions of dollars in losses, and climate action is needed now to turn our direction around:

  • Climate-related weather disasters cost the US economy more than $145bn in 2021 – a nearly 50% increase from last year, according to figures by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). Over the last five years, they have cost $750bn. Since 1980 323 weather and climate disasters have cost $1bn or more, the total cost of these events exceeds $2.195tn.
  • According to a report from the reinsurance firm Swiss Re last year, climate disasters could cost the US economy 10% of gross domestic product (GDP) – the broadest measure of economic health – by 2050. Globally, that figure rises to 18%.
  • Another study published in Environmental Research Letters in July last year, found long-term warming contributed $27bn to the losses covered by the US crop insurance program from 1991 to 2017, or just over 19% of the total. In 2012, the single costliest year, rising temperatures contributed nearly half of losses valued at $18.6bn. These climate caused food losses drive food prices and inflation higher.