NYT's 'Leaked' Bombshell Climate Report Was Actually Public for Months

2016 climate change records

2016 climate change records

The report is part of the National Climate Assessment mandated by Congress every four years.

The report states that average temperatures have risen faster in the past few decades than at any time in the past 1,700 years. Days of extreme temperatures have become more common. Snowpacks are threatening to shrink. Climate models project increases of at least 2.5°F (1.4°C) over the next few decades, which means that recent record-setting years in the US will be relatively "common" in the near future. Obama might have been tempted to reference D.C.'s heat wave in his remarks that day on global warming, but the President chose his words judiciously - careful not to overstep the scientific understanding of climate change and extreme weather.

"Human activities are now the dominant cause of the observed changes in climate", in the form of heat-trapping greenhouse gases from carbon fuels, the report says.

The authors did evaluate naturally occurring atmospheric phenomena such as El Niño, but found that natural influence was "limited to a small fraction of observed climate trends over decades". Sixteen of the last 17 years were the warmest years on record. But the rise is expected to be much bigger towards the latter part of the century - by 5.0 degrees F (2.8 degrees C) with lower emissions and, by a whopping, 8.7 degrees F (4.8 degrees C) with higher emissions. The New York times released the draft report yesterday.

USA climate scientists have watched these policy developments with increasing alarm, with some expressing concern the Trump administration might seek to bury or significantly water down the quadrennial climate assessment.

LISA FRIEDMAN: I spoke to several scientists, yes, who are concerned that this report wouldn't get out. They fear Trump and crew will dismiss their blunt assessment, according to The New York Times and numerous other news outlets. What remains to be seen is whether the White House will accept the facts presented and correct its regressive environmental policies.

At this point, Kopp says that the review process has been on track, and he sees no need to prejudge it.

"That said, it is certainly true that some members of the administration have made statements that contradict the findings of the report, which is a cause for concern", he adds.

Of course decisions are also being made by the Trump administration to reverse efforts to reduce and eliminate carbon emissions, including moves to roll back President Barack Obama's biggest effort to cut carbon pollution and to pull the USA out of the global Paris Agreement to fight climate change.

Some have dealt with carbon emissions, with the administration arguing the environmental gains are not worth the economic harm.

Indeed, there is new evidence that the Trump administration is trying to suppress and distort the language around climate change, with the U.S. Department of Agriculture telling staff to avoid using the term "climate change" and instead use the term "weather extremes".

Trump sent official notice of the USA intention to withdraw late last week. That stance runs counter to his agency's stance under the previous administration. Trump, Pruitt, Energy Secretary Rick Perry and Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke have all downplayed the human impact on the climate.

Destructive climate change has arrived in the Midwest.

This is the first substantial review completed under President Trump.

"This is the most comprehensive science report that has been published outside of the auspices of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, to my knowledge", co-lead author Katharine Hayhoe of Texas Tech University told the BBC.

Header Image: Steam and smoke rise from the cooling towers and chimneys of a power plant in Juliette, Georgia. In fact, it was a non-story because the report has been made available to the public for more than six months.

However, the draft assessment has been online since January.

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