The Washington Post’s Climate Quiz is a great way to test your knowledge



All right: Time to see if you’ve been paying attention to The Washington Post coverage of the people, organizations and governments trying to mitigate climate change, found on our Climate Solutions page. If you have, this quiz should be an easy A.

1. Which major oil and gas company says it will either eliminate or offset its carbon emissions to a net zero level by 2050?

Answer: C. Under a new CEO, BP has pledged that it will invest heavily in renewable energy and, through a combination of buying carbon offsets and scaling back the amount of gas and oil it produces, will be carbon neutral by 2050.

2. There’s an unusual material showing up in fashion design houses that could help solve the problem of textile waste in landfills. What is it?

Answer: C. Increasingly, scientists are using mycelium, the threadlike vegetative roots of fungus, to create everything from plastics to packaging materials to plant-based meats – even scaffolding to grow new organs. And now, mycelium is starting to show up in closets as a nature-based material for clothes, shoes and bags slung over shoulders. Manufacturing mycelium results in less carbon dioxide emitted, compared to leather. And the material made from fungus can decompose more quickly, its manufacturers say.

3. A group of scientists has devised a way to help keep people cool even if they’re outdoors in hot, humid weather. Their invention, called the Cold Tube pavillion, was tested in Singapore and relies on what principle?

Answer: A Radiant cooling is something we regularly experience when we stand in a hot kitchen and open a refrigerator: the cooler temperatures inside the refrigerator absorb the heat emanating from our bodies. The air temperature and humidity hasn’t changed, but we feel cooler.

4. What’s a term for the practice by humans of relocating plants or animals from their natural habitat to another place?

Answer: C. Scientists are debating whether humans should physically relocate plants or animals because of threats they face in their natural habitat. The practice of assisted migration is receiving heightened attention as the planet warms and more species are struggling to survive. Critics are concerned about unintended consequences of human interference; supporters argue that humans are responsible in part for changes to the climate and should help other species navigate those changes.

5. For more than a decade, biologists have been trapping baby eels in the Susquehanna River in Maryland, loading them into trucks and trucking them miles to release them in freshwater creeks upstream. Why?

Answer: D. For more than a decade, biologists have been trapping baby eels in the Susquehanna River and trucking them past four hydroelectric dams to release them in freshwater creeks upstream.

6. The baby eels do not travel lightly. They carry another organism that is vital to the health of the creeks. What is it?

Answer: C. For millennia, baby eels traveling from the Chesapeake Bay to freshwater upriver have carried mussel larvae with them, latched on their heads. As the larvae grow to maturity, they filter the water, an important contribution to the health of the creeks and rivers.

7. How much of global carbon emissions is estimated to be produced by the fashion industry?

Answer: A. The fashion industry pollutes heavily. It consumes huge quantities of water and produces 10 percent of global carbon emissions — more than all international air travel and maritime shipping combined.

8. As part of BP’s strategy to reduce its reliance on fossil fuels, what could be coming to a BP gas station near you?

Answer: B. BP is considering installing electric vehicle recharging stations at many of its more than 7,000 retail gasoline stations in the United States. The company has already purchased Britain’s largest electric vehicle charging network and another network in China.

9. BP is planning to slash its oil and gas output by how much?

Answer: A. Earlier this year, BP said it would cut the amount of oil and gas it produces by 40 percent .

10. What is one of the biggest advantages of the Cool Tube pavillion that was tested in Singapore to help people cool down in hot and humid weather?

Answer: B. The Cold Tube pavillion does rely on electricity, to keep the water inside its panels cold. But it doesn’t require dehumidification, which means it uses half the energy of air conditioning. That’s important as the worldwide demand for air conditioning – or some other way to cool off – grows as the planet warms. By 2070, the demand for cooling is expected to overtake the demand for heating.

0 to 3 questions correct

Climate novice: You’ve still got a lot to learn about climate change. But that’s okay: We’ve got you covered. Got a question? Ask us here.

4 to 7 questions correct

Climate curious: Hey, not bad! You know a thing or two about climate change. But there’s still more to learn, and we’ve got you covered. Got a question? Ask us here.

8 to 10 questions correct

Climate expert: Well done! You’re super climate-literate. You probably already know that one of the most important things you as an individual can do to combat climate change is to spread the word. Go ahead: Brag a little, share this quiz with your friends, and find out who knows the most about climate change.

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