The Trump administration mandated Climate Science Special Report released data on Thursday revealing that earth’s temperature continues to rise and that humans are primarily responsible. This is the Fourth National Climate Assessment and arguably the most comprehensive report on the nation’s changing weather patterns. This report is one of two volumes produced by hundreds of American scientists from 13 federal agencies synthesizing data from over 1,500 environmental studies. It was peer-reviewed by the National Academy of Sciences and, despite Trump’s continual resistance to global warming, was also signed off by the White House Office of Science and Technology.
The last three years have been the warmest its ever been and “it is extremely likely that human activities, especially emissions of greenhouse gases, are the dominant cause of the observed warming since the mid-20th century. For the warming over the last century, there is no convincing alternative explanation supported by the extent of the observational evidence.”
The White House on Friday attempted to minimize the significance of the study and its dire findings.
“The climate has changed and is always changing. As the Climate Science Special Report states, the magnitude of future climate change depends significantly on ‘remaining uncertainty in the sensitivity of Earth’s climate to [greenhouse gas] emissions,’”
White House spokesman Raj Shah said in a statement. “In the United States, energy-related carbon dioxide emissions have been declining, are expected to remain flat through 2040, and will also continue to decline as a share of world emissions.”
Contributing authors agreed that the report most likely underestimates the future impact of climate change and how it may influence the natural and physical landscape. Also, the report included for the first time “potential surprises” that may occur if we as a collective don’t start making serious changes. It is also extremely plausible that these unanticipated changes may occur.
“The National Climate Assessment is only further proof that the Trump Administration can no longer attempt to misrepresent climate science of the country’s highest caliber as ‘fake news.’ The American people deserve to know the truth about the reality staring us square in the face.”
The executive summary states:
There are at least two types of potential surprises: compound events, where multiple extreme climate events occur simultaneously or sequentially (creating greater overall impact), and critical threshold or tipping point events, where some threshold is crossed in the climate system (that leads to large impacts). The probability of such surprises—some of which may be abrupt and/or irreversible—as well as other more predictable but difficult-to-manage impacts, increases as the influence of human activities on the climate system increases.
Some key findings from the report include:
- Global sea levels increased nearly 7-8 inches since 1900, with almost half (about 3 inches) of that rise occurring since 1993.
- Sea levels are expected to increase — by a minimum of several inches in next 15 years and 1-4 feet by the end of the century.
- Global atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration has surpassed 400 ppm, a number last observed 3 million years ago, when BOTH average temp and rainfall were significantly higher.
- Heavy rainfall is intensifying worldwide and expected to increase in the U.S.
- Daily tidal flooding accelerating in more than 25 Atlantic and Gulf Coastal regions
- Heat waves have happened more often in the U.S. since the 1960s, while cold waves are decreasing in frequency.
- Large U.S. forest fires have intensified since the 1980s and will continue to increase.
- Earlier spring melt and decreased snowpack are impacting water resources in the western United States.
America’s leading scientists have confirmed what Mother Nature has been making plenty clear: the climate crisis is real and urgent. If the Administration won't listen & if the federal gov't won’t act, states, cities, businesses, investors, & citizens will. https://t.co/DgfUOSWLz9
— Al Gore (@algore) November 3, 2017
Now that this report has been released and the facts have been made clear as day, how will the Trump Administration respond to its findings? Despite rising temperatures on the surface and in the seas, it seems as if the president is the one in the hot seat!
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