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Today, California is hammered by extreme weather. Tomorrow, it could be your area | Julia Scheeres

Even if disasters feel far away, we all live in the same planetary neighborhood. Can we unite in our response to the crisis?

I live in the Bay Area, famous for its mild weather, a place where climate change feels a bit abstract – the problem of people residing in distant lands. It’s easy to scroll through images of the increasing weather disasters – cyclones, tornados, blizzards, floods, mud slides, rising seas and wildfires – feeling horror but also a little smug at the luck of living in the land of year-round shorts and relentless sunshine.

But our luck changed on New Year’s Eve, when a line of killer storms began to assault California, soaking us with 24tn gallons of water, killing 19 people and causing more than 1bn dollars in damages.

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