UCLA in the News lists selected mentions of UCLA in the world’s news media. Some articles may require registration or a subscription. See more UCLA in the News.

California needs to protect itself from catastrophic floods | Los Angeles Times

In a study last year, scientists Xingying Huang and Daniel Swain found that climate change is dramatically increasing the risk of a catastrophic megaflood in California. Their research showed climate change has already doubled the likelihood of a once-in-a-century flood in any given year … Swain, a climate scientist at UCLA, said the new flood protection plan for the Central Valley represents a positive step for the state to become more prepared. “I think that California would be in a better place from a flood risk perspective if the entire plan were fully implemented, and funded,” Swain said.

The Lunar New Year and the zodiac | Los Angeles Times

Interestingly, 2023 also is an uncommon year where the Chinese and Vietnamese animals differ. In the Vietnamese zodiac, the Year of the Rabbit, fourth in the zodiac cycle, is replaced by the Year of the Cat … There are multiple explanations for why the Vietnamese zodiac has a cat, said Quyen Di Chuc Bui. He’s a Vietnamese language lecturer at UCLA … Chuc Bui said it might also be because ancient Vietnamese people who originally lived in the lowlands preferred a more domestic animal like the cat over a wild animal like the rabbit.

Colorado library closed after meth contamination | NPR

Meth is a highly addictive stimulant that can be ingested by smoking, snorting, swallowing a pill, or injection. But it’s unclear whether members of the public who went to the library are at a serious risk of health problems, said Chelsea Shover, assistant professor-in-residence at the UCLA David Geffen School of Medicine. “No one’s saying it’s healthy or good for you,” she said.

Can we talk about how we talk about the weather? | New York Times

Blame is typically cast in the passive voice: Weather scientists crafted attention-grabbing terms, which were drawn into the ratings-driven media vortex. Daniel Swain, a climate scientist at the University of California, Los Angeles, said that the technical terminology was widely used without context by traditional news media and on social media “where some people might use a term half-jokingly and others are genuinely freaking out.” He added, “Headlines literally sound like the end of the world.”

Past 3 weeks were wettest in 161 years in Bay Area | Bay Area News Group

“We’ve gotten so much water and so much snow,” said Daniel Swain, a climate scientist at UCLA. “It’s going to help us dry out and dig out heading into late January. It’s really good news because it takes off the trajectory toward worsening flooding.” (Also: UCLA’s Alex Hall was interviewed about precipitation by KPCC-FM.)

Could electric big rigs alleviate pollution at ports?  | Bloomberg News

Drayage dates to the days when horses hauled goods from ports on carts called drays. Today, there are about 34,000 active drayage trucks in California, according to the California Air Resources Board (CARB). At the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, heavy-duty trucks account for 40% of greenhouse gas emissions, a 2019 University of California at Los Angeles study on the Southern California drayage industry found; together, these ports are the single biggest source of air pollution in the region. 

Some animals fear wildlife crossings meant to help them | KTLA-TV

A recently published study by researchers at UCLA found that some animals might actually be fearful of using wildlife crossings, so designers will need to take that into account when planning any new crossings. “We know that species use them, but sometimes they have to be sort xof designed for specific species because different species perceive open areas or the habitat on crossings differently,” said Dan Blumstein, a UCLA professor of ecology and evolutionary biology.

Atmospheric dust may have hidden true extent of global heating | Guardian

The analysis by atmospheric scientists and climate researchers in the US and Europe attempts to tally the varied, complex ways in which dust has affected global climate patterns, concluding that overall, it has worked to somewhat counteract the warming effects of greenhouse gasses. The study … warns that current climate models fail to take into account the effect of atmospheric dust. “We’ve been predicting for a long time that we’re headed toward a bad place when it comes to greenhouse warming,” said Jasper Kok, an atmospheric physicist at UCLA who led the research. “What this research shows is that so far, we’ve had the emergency brake on.” (Also: Space Daily.)

What’s behind the mental health crisis among LGBTQ youth? | San Francisco Chronicle

One-third of California’s middle and high school students experienced serious psychological distress between 2019 and 2021, according to the California Health Interview Survey, an annual statewide survey led by the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research. According to experts, those stakes are higher for LGBTQ+ students, many of whom relied on spaces like school-based gay-straight alliance clubs, or sessions led by LGBTQ+ focused nonprofit organizations, to support their mental health.

Gov. Newsom’s early-education budget proposals | EdSource

“An intense focus on literacy development is crucial for early education. The budget puts resources in for additional reading coaches and literacy specialists, but greater investment is needed, particularly for schools that Black, Latinx and low-income students,” said UCLA’s Tyrone Howard.

Battle over Arkansas governor’s banning of ‘Latinx’ | Sacramento Bee

Sanders’ ban may be another example of Republicans aiming to take advantage of a rightward trend among working-class Latino voters. But some see it as an attack on the growing Hispanic community in her state. “She’s calling out a culture war with those very residents of her state that are central to its economic future,” said Sonja Diaz, director of the UCLA Latino Policy and Politics Institute.