Rebecca Hersher Rebecca Hersher is a reporter on NPR's Science Desk.
Rebecca Hersher at NPR headquarters in Washington, D.C., July 25, 2018. (photo by Allison Shelley) (Square)
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Rebecca Hersher

Allison Shelley/NPR
Rebecca Hersher at NPR headquarters in Washington, D.C., July 25, 2018. (photo by Allison Shelley)
Allison Shelley/NPR

Rebecca Hersher

Reporter, Science Desk

Rebecca Hersher (she/her) is a reporter on NPR's Science Desk, where she reports on outbreaks, natural disasters, and environmental and health research. Since coming to NPR in 2011, she has covered the Ebola outbreak in West Africa, embedded with the Afghan army after the American combat mission ended, and reported on floods and hurricanes in the U.S. She's also reported on research about puppies. Before her work on the Science Desk, she was a producer for NPR's Weekend All Things Considered in Los Angeles.

Hersher was part of the NPR team that won a Peabody award for coverage of the Ebola epidemic in West Africa, and produced a story from Liberia that won an Edward R. Murrow award for use of sound. She was a finalist for the 2017 Daniel Schorr prize; a 2017 Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting fellow, reporting on sanitation in Haiti; and a 2015 NPR Above the Fray fellow, investigating the causes of the suicide epidemic in Greenland.

Prior to working at NPR, Hersher reported on biomedical research and pharmaceutical news for Nature Medicine.

Story Archive

Commuters walk into a flooded subway station and disrupted service due to extremely heavy rainfall from the remnants of Hurricane Ida on September 2, 2021. David Dee Delgado/Getty Images hide caption

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David Dee Delgado/Getty Images

Climate Change Means More Subway Floods; How Cities Are Adapting

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Homes that were sold by the Department of Housing and Urban Development between January 2017 and August 2020 are in federally designated flood zones at almost 75 times the rate of all homes sold nationwide in that period. New Jersey is one hot spot. Here, flooding from Tropical Storm Henri in Helmetta, N.J., this August. Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images hide caption

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Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

The Federal Government Sells Flood-Prone Homes To Often Unsuspecting Buyers, NPR Finds

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A new study finds that common climate change terms can be confusing to the public. That includes phrases that describe the transition from fossil fuels to cleaner sources of energy. Here, wind turbines operate near a coal-fired power plant in Germany. Ina Fassbender /AFP via Getty Images hide caption

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Ina Fassbender /AFP via Getty Images

Rescuers carry a boat into the subway in Zhengzhou, China, in July after flash floods trapped passengers underground. STR/AFP via Getty Images hide caption

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STR/AFP via Getty Images

NYC's Subway Flooding Isn't A Fluke. It's The Reality For Cities In A Warming World

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A woman surveys damage Monday from Hurricane Ida in a neighborhood in Kenner, La. The storm was fueled by abnormally warm water in the Gulf of Mexico. Scott Olson/Getty Images hide caption

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How Climate Change Is Fueling Hurricanes Like Ida

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Debris could be seen piled up in Waverly, Tenn., on Sunday after heavy weekend rains caused deadly flash flooding. Climate change is driving more torrential rain around the world. Mark Humphrey/AP hide caption

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Mark Humphrey/AP

The Floods In Tennessee Aren't Freak Accidents. They're A New Reality

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Steam and exhaust rise from the steel power station HKM Huettenwerke Krupp Mannesmann GmbH on a cold winter day on January 6, 2017 in Duisburg, Germany. Climate scientists reports that greenhouse gases are among the chief causes of global warming and climates change. Lukas Schulze/Getty Images hide caption

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Lukas Schulze/Getty Images

Three (Hopeful!) Takeaways From The UN's Climate Change Report

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People evacuate from a wildfire north of Athens, Greece, on Friday. A climate-driven heat wave helped create conditions for the fire to burn out of control. Scientists warn that humans are running out of time to curb greenhouse gas emissions and avoid catastrophic global warming. Thodoris Nikolaou/AP hide caption

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Thodoris Nikolaou/AP

A Major Report Warns Climate Change Is Accelerating And Humans Must Cut Emissions Now

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How Climate Change Is Driving Extreme Weather

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A wind farm in Wyoming generates electricity for a region that used to be more dependent on coal-fired power plants. A new study finds that millions of lives could be saved this century by rapidly reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Matt Young/AP hide caption

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Matt Young/AP

Volunteers fight a wildfire in northeastern Siberia on July 17th. Heat waves in the Russian Arctic and boreal forests have fueled intense, widespread blazes that can damage trees and release enormous amounts of stored carbon dioxide from forests and permafrost. Ivan Nikiforov/AP hide caption

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Ivan Nikiforov/AP

Climate Scientists Meet As Floods, Fires, Droughts And Heat Waves Batter Countries

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Streets and homes flooded in Newport Beach, Calif., during a high tide in July 2020. So-called sunny day floods are getting more common in coastal cities and towns as sea levels rise due to climate change. Matt Hartman/AP hide caption

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Matt Hartman/AP

A reconstructed Neanderthal skeleton (right) and a modern-human version of a skeleton are displayed at the American Museum of Natural History in New York in 2003. A new study confirms that early humans who lived in colder places adapted to have larger bodies. Frank Franklin II/AP hide caption

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Frank Franklin II/AP