Latest climate change report predicts dire times for economy, environment

Contrary to President Donald Trump’s oft-recited, seemingly off-the-cuff opposition to scientists’ rock-solid evidence of global warming, the White House released Friday what appears to be a damning, all-encompassing report that instead predicts increasing economic, environmental and agricultural damage in coming years.

A stronghold of 13 federal agencies collaborated on the major report, which concluded that if serious steps are not taken to lessen the impacts of global warming, climate change could cut “up to a tenth of gross domestic product by 2100, more than double the losses of the Great Recession a decade ago," reported The New York Times. 

The 1,656-page Fourth National Climate Assessment describes how record California wildfires, Midwest crop failures and the South’s run-down infrastructure indicate the effects of climate change on the economy, health and environment.

The report predicts fire season spreading to the Southwest, agricultural yields decreasing significantly, plus American exports and imports negatively affected. The New York Times gleaned conclusions from the report: www.nca2018.globalchange.gov/

As the Trump administration maintains that environmental deregulation will boost economic growth, scientific experts predict the report will attract support from climate change proponents seeking to contest the administration’s denial of global warming.

“This report will weaken the Trump administration’s legal case for undoing climate change regulations, and it strengthens the hands of those who go to court to fight them,” said Michael Oppenheimer, a professor of geosciences and international affairs at Princeton, as The New York Times quoted.

The day before the White House’s release of the report, Trump tweeted an anti-science taunt: “ Brutal and Extended cold blast could shatter ALL RECORDS – Whatever happened to Global Warming?”

His actions include loosening regulations on vehicle emissions, power plant smoke stacks and threatening to withdraw the United States from the Paris Agreement, a nearly-worldwide pledge to reduce carbon emissions. Most countries have signed the landmark agreement, instituted in 2015, “to combat climate change and to accelerate and intensify the actions and investments needed for a sustainable low carbon future,” according to the United Nations Climate Change website. 18 United

Wired defines climate change as “the catch-all term for the shift in worldwide weather phenomena associated with an increase in global average temperatures. It's real and temperatures have been going up around the world for many decades. ”

The report, the second National Climate Assessment volume released since November 2017, projects climate impacts include $141 billion from heat-related deaths, $118 billion from sea levels rising and $32 billon from infrastructure damage by century’s end. The federal government is required by law to produce such reports every four years.

Another report, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, released in October, warns that “severe economic and humanitarian crises” could strike around the world by 2040, according to The New York Times reports. Scientists selected to advise world leaders comprise the panel.

Farmers, traders and manufacturers could especially suffer from the varying effects of climate change, the most recent report reveals.

Scientists, writers of the latest report, questioned the White House’s timing of the release, as the day after Thanksgiving typically attracts less attention on the news front due to the holiday.

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