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Science Mondays: Unlivable Oasis: A Family’s Housing Struggle On The Front Lines Of The Climate Crisis

Welcome to Science Mondays. Each Monday, Geek Alabama will feature a video or article about the world of Science. Our goal is to feature science topics and make you smarter, and in our world today, it’s a great thing to make people smarter.

Welcome to Thermal, a Southern California town that’s both a playground for the rich and home to some of the hottest farmland in the world. Thermal is a case study in how the growing climate crisis magnifies inequality, and how it intersects with housing, our first line of defense against an increasingly inhospitable environment.

As temperatures soar across the country, Pedro Nicolas and his family have been struggling to find livable housing in the desert. Excessive heat, arsenic-laced water and dust storms plague the immigrant family’s already dilapidated trailer, the only kind of housing they can afford on Pedro’s agricultural wages. Less than 30 miles northwest, more affluent residents cool themselves in shimmering pools and on lush, green golf courses.

The divide between these two worlds is known as the climate gap, and it’s only widening as the planet warms.

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