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July 25 News: Extreme Heat Still Baking Midwest

While much of the country has had a brief respite from the extreme heat and humidity that has marked the summer of 2012, in the nation’s heartland — including key agricultural areas from Nebraska to Illinois — the heat has proven relentless. [Climate Central]

Through July 21, St. Louis and Columbia, Mo., had each set a record for the warmest year-to-date, beating a record established in 1921. The National Weather Service said that by October, the records for the maximum number of days with a high temperature of 90°F or greater, and 95°F or greater, “will also likely be threatened at all three of our official climate locations.”

Further west, it is possible that North Platte, Neb., will wind up with its second-longest streak of consecutive 100°F days, with nine such days if temperatures reach the century mark through Wednesday.

Hundreds of military veterans joined the fight to keep the US navy’s “green fleet” afloat on Tuesday, calling on the White House and Congress to fund military research on alternative fuels. [Guardian]

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There have been several developments following the disclosure of a substantial unstated financial relationship between Charles Groat, who supervised a University of Texas Energy Institute study of environmental impacts of gas drilling, and a drilling company. [Dot Earth]

Some political science research suggests that natural disasters like droughts and floods really can hurt an incumbent president. [Wonk Blog]

Cutting soot and other air pollutants could help “buy time” in the fight against climate change, a senior U.S. official said on Tuesday as seven nations joined a Washington-led plan. [Chicago Tribune]

Lake Superior, which is the northernmost, coldest, and deepest of the five Great Lakes, is the warmest it has been at this time of year in at least a century, thanks to the mild winter, warm spring, and hot, dry summer. [Climate Central]

The nation’s first commercial tidal energy project was dedicated Tuesday in this northeastern-most city of the United States, the beginning of a new industry that energy officials project could someday generate a significant portion of the nation’s electricity. [Boston Globe]

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Between biogas, wind and solar, Anheuser-Busch generates about half of its electricity from renewable energy to make beer at its Fairfield, California plant. [Sustainable Business]