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Experts will gather in Punta Gorda next week to present the latest climate science and the public is invited to attend

Hurricane Ian approaches the Florida peninsula on September 28, 2022
Hurricane Ian approaches the Florida peninsula on September 28, 2022

Last year wasthe hottest year in recorded history, both in terms of air temperatures and ocean temperatures. And it was the eighth record-breaking year in a row. And while climate scientists have been telling us for decades that as temperatures increase we’re going to see disruptions in our weather patterns — someday in 'the future' — it’s starting to feel like that future is already upon us.

See examples like Hurricane Otis, which intensified from a tropical storm to strong Category 5 hurricane in less than 24 hours last October and devastated Acapulco, Mexico; Hurricane Hilary last August, which also rapidly intensified and maintained enough strength to cross California as a tropical storm, breaking tropical rainfall records in a several states and causing extreme flooding in one of the driest places on Earth; and of course 2022’s Hurricane Ian which devastated southwest Florida and caused flooding and damage to much of the Florida peninsula. The list goes on, all around the world.

We’re previewing the 2024 Southwest Florida Climate Summit, hosted by the Coastal & Heartland National Estuary Partnership, which gathers experts to present the latest climate science pertaining to our region, and methods for building resiliency in our communities. It’s Wed. and Thurs., Feb. 28 and 29 at the Charlotte Harbor Event & Conference Center in Punta Gorda. The summit is free and open to anyone but pre-registration is required. WGCU Public Media is one of the Summit’s sponsors.

Click here to register. Click here to see the summit agenda.

Jennifer Hecker, Executive Director of the Coastal & Heartland National Estuary Partnership
Dr. Carolina Maran, Chief Resiliency Officer for the South Florida Water Management District
Jennifer Codo-Salisbury, Executive Director of the Central Florida Regional Planning Council

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