Like Countable?

Install the App
TRY NOW

Trump Administration Climate Report Warns of Increasingly Dire Risks to U.S.

Is it time for Congress to take more urgent action on climate change?

by Axios | 11.24.18

The Trump administration released a major new climate science report on Black Friday, warning of "hundreds of billions of dollars" in annual losses to some economic sectors without scaled up actions to adapt to current changes and slash emissions to avoid future warming.

Why it matters: The report by scientists from 13 federal agencies constitutes the second volume of the Fourth National Climate Assessment, which is a congressionally mandated report. Its conclusion: Lives and property are already at risk in the U.S. due to climate change.

  • The release date, on the Friday after Thanksgiving, which is traditionally the busiest shopping day of the year, is likely to bury the news coverage of its findings.
  • On a Friday call with reporters, David Reidmiller, the director of the assessment, said the timing was determined in order to have the report come out in advance of the next round of U.N. climate talks beginning in Poland on Dec. 2 as well as a large scientific meeting in Washington in mid-December.
  • “We wanted to get this out sufficiently in advance of those meetings so that folks have a chance to review it," Reidmiller said.
  • Monica Allen, a spokesperson for NOAA, said the decision to release the report on Black Friday was "made in the last week or so."

The details: The contents of the new report, which consists of 29 chapters that were extensively peer reviewed, are bleak. The report points out that the era of climate consequences for the U.S. is well underway, and only actions taken in the next few years can be effective in addressing the scope and severity of the problem.

  • The authors warn that neither climate adaptation nor the pace of emissions cuts are keeping up with the severity and swiftness of the challenge.
  • The report release comes as the death toll from historic California wildfires continue to rise, and it finds that climate change is expected to bring more frequent wildfires and poor air quality.
  • The report finds that under a worst-case climate change scenario, in which emissions continue to climb at current rates, extreme heat would cause labor-related losses of an estimated $155 billion per year by 2090. At the same time, coastal property damage in the U.S. from sea level rise and storm surge flooding could reach nearly $120 billion per year.

The backstory: The new report builds off of findings from the first volume of the National Climate Assessment, which was released by the Trump administration in November 2017.

  • The second volume contains more information specific to vital U.S. economic sectors, regions and national interests. It includes a region-by-region breakdown of how global warming is altering life and economic productivity, as well as what opportunities there are to adapt to it.
  • The first report was a sweeping overview of climate science findings, which decisively concluded that there is no credible explanation for modern-day global warming other than the burning of fossil fuels for energy.
  • The report was written and published under the auspices of the U.S. Global Change Research Program, which brings together the 13 federal agencies that work on climate change issues, from the Energy Department to NOAA.

"This report dives into details concerning the US in a way that has not been done before," Michael Wehner, a climate researcher at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, told Axios.

Between the lines: The Trump administration has allowed the National Climate Assessment process to move forward without interference, while at the same time expressing doubt about the causes and extent of the threat of human-caused climate change when it comes to forming its energy policies.

In an interview with in November with "Axios on HBO," President Trump was presented with the first volume of the assessment, and he dismissed it.

Go deeper:

Andrew Freedman

Photo: Josh Edelson/AFP/Getty Images

Axios

Written by Axios

Follow this Action Center to stay updated on new posts

Leave a comment
(261)
  • Joey
    11/24/2018
    ···

    Climate Change is real, and it's happening right now. We are harming the planet through our own pollution and energy, which has a negative effect on Earth's climate. People's lives are at stake, and so many innocent lives have already been lost because of this issue. We need to address these problems once and for all before it's too late. To my representatives in office, please continue to push for solutions to Climate Change, and urge others to do the same. The Trump Administration needs to change it's stance on this issue, because we have seen living proof and enough evidence to show that Climate Change isn't a myth, it's a reality.

    Like (46)
    Follow
    Share
  • Kathryn
    Voted Yes
    11/24/2018
    ···

    Climate change is going to be our biggest, most expensive problem if we don’t start dealing with it. like, yesterday. We can start by halting any bailouts or assistance to industries that are most contributive to pollution and CO2 emissions...let them die out and make way for greener resources.

    Like (35)
    Follow
    Share
  • Tim
    Voted No
    11/24/2018
    ···

    Absolutely not! Let’s not double down on this nonsense. There’s been no change in global temps for 16 years and the US has reduced its CO2 emissions for each of the last 8 years. Let’s not waste trillions of taxpayer dollars on this nonsense.

    Like (14)
    Follow
    Share
  • Scott
    Voted Maybe
    11/24/2018
    ···

    What good is the report, if you have an administration that decided to release the information Friday after Thanksgiving with the knowledge that most people are traveling and won’t see it till Monday. That combined with the president who continues to say it is a hoax and questions who the scientists are that are writing these reports. For Christ sake he should know. It was a government study. He said it. Fucking Moron. Really this guy need His headg examined by mentaloo specialists and if it is the fact, which I’m sure it will be, that he suffers from narcissistic tendencies or any other condition which prevent him Thinking straight, he needs to be removed from office. Our planet is dying right in front of us, and we have an administration that Buries it’s head in the sand and prays to God that he’ll come rescue us.

    Like (7)
    Follow
    Share
  • Chickie
    Voted Yes
    11/24/2018
    ···

    Instead of ceding to scientists, expert meteorologists, etc, #45 Tweeted his buffoonery by confusing weather with climate change: “Brutal and Extended Cold Blasts could shatter ALL RECORDS - Whatever happened to Global Warming?”

    Like (18)
    Follow
    Share
  • ManfromNebraska
    Voted No
    11/24/2018
    ···

    Fake science!

    Like (10)
    Follow
    Share
  • ConservativeGuy
    11/24/2018
    ···

    Man cannot change the climate. I blame the Raccoons.

    Like (7)
    Follow
    Share
  • Jim2423
    Voted Maybe
    11/24/2018
    ···

    We should always be looking for the worse in Mother Nature. Just to be on the prepared side. But I really don’t see what congress could possibly do except grant large tax free bonds and free money for every climate grubby money hungry agency out there. It is we the people who must take the first step. Just listen to the experts on what we as individuals can do but congress spends your tax dollars foolishly.

    Like (1)
    Follow
    Share
  • David
    Voted Yes
    11/24/2018
    ···

    Please join the effort to create a Green New Deal and actively transition our country to renewable energy and address the undeniable impacts of global warming that we are already experiencing in CA and all over the world. Resist every attempt by the Trump administration to undermine our health and safety thru deregulating the fossil fuel industries, opening up public lands to mining, fracking, and other destructive extractive methods, and allowing poisonous chemicals to be released into our air, water, and food/soil.

    Like (11)
    Follow
    Share
  • burrkitty
    Voted Yes
    11/26/2018
    ···

    Politics distorts science on both ends of the spectrum. Smoking cigarettes is bad for you, vaccines work, GMOs are safe, more guns equals more gun deaths, depression isn’t purely biological, genes do predict educational achievement, being homosexual is not a choice, gender is not binary and parts of it are biological not social, nuclear power is overwhelming safe, evolution is real and ongoing, implicit bias testing has repeatedly failed to meet basic scientific standards, climate change is real and humans are driving the rate of change. It’s all too convenient to ignore or reject scientific findings that question deeply-felt political beliefs. To truly be pro-science, you can’t ignore the facts that don’t serve your political ends. Embracing science means acknowledging the evidence even when it goes against accepted dogma. The science will not go away just because you don’t like it. Extremism in the defense of liberty may not be a vice, but it is in defense of science, where facts matter more than faith—whether it comes in a religious or secular form—and where moderation in the pursuit of truth is a virtue.

    Like (11)
    Follow
    Share
  • Wade
    Voted Yes
    11/24/2018
    ···

    Uhh duh! Try holding your breath while you count your money, see which runs out first. But all the while this is happening, he's calling for a ban on Trans people and warning of the unrest at our southern border all the while having panic attacks over the Russia investigation. At least we can say that our president is consistent in his urgency to keep us divide as we stand so he and our representatives and America the corporate can keep robbing us blind and marginalizing we the oppressed. But hey I'm certain all are too preoccupied with black Friday and cyber Monday to even care. Can I get one cheer for consumerism? Hooray! Can I get a cheer for materialsim! Hooray! Now how about one last one for the despair the corporate marketing execs have us living in because we're defined by our tax bracket and long list of debt and the brand that you are currently billboarding on yourself.

    Like (10)
    Follow
    Share
  • WhiskeyBravo
    Voted No
    11/24/2018
    ···

    I always see this vague claim “Congress needs to take action” it’s right up there with “common sense gun control” or “women’s health” and none of them really mean what they say. All I have seen so far, is that “Congress needs to take action!” means Carbon tax. (SHOCKER government agencies recommend more government control!) Which would be detrimental to the poorest among us who can’t afford anything else and accomplish nothing but making life more expensive and the same or worse pollution continues. The “left” in particular, needs to honest and informed about that in conversation. You can’t just shout meaningless platitudes like “Congress should take action!” (What action?) and assume victory, otherwise you are just a gayer Donald Trump. its just a power grab for the governing class, swooping in and controlling energy as they do many other facets of our civilization. Finally, the biggest problem here, is the expectation that government (people in suits in a room) are somehow equipped to solve problems better than you can. Nothing changes unless YOU want it to change and YOU change it.

    Like (8)
    Follow
    Share
  • Lissett
    Voted Yes
    11/26/2018
    ···

    Don’t let the Environmental Crisis become more worse than it already is. Hurricanes, earthquakes are becoming more prominent than ever before. Politicians need to stop worrying about money. Stop being greedy and think about Mother Earth rather than worrying about economics issues because those can be fixed. Environmental degradation is irreversible. Don’t let religion or a book hinder your ability to see reality as it is.

    Like (6)
    Follow
    Share
  • Jonoevans
    Voted Yes
    11/24/2018
    ···

    The science behind the warnings of climate change are real and factual. It is naive to ignore these findings and make “economic” decisions for short term gains. We must address climate change head-on and aggressively. It is probably too late to undo all the damage, but we must slow the effects.

    Like (6)
    Follow
    Share
  • Deane
    Voted Yes
    11/24/2018
    ···

    We need work on climate change, NOW!, not 2021. It may already too late to save us.

    Like (6)
    Follow
    Share
  • Mark
    Voted Yes
    11/26/2018
    ···

    Finding a solution for climate change is the most important issue facing humanity today

    Like (6)
    Follow
    Share
  • SneakyPete
    Voted No
    11/24/2018
    ···

    Am I seeing a Democratic House TAX on the Horizon coming? SneakyPete..... ??🤔?? 11*24*28.....

    Like (5)
    Follow
    Share
  • I.Got.an.Idea...
    Voted Yes
    11/25/2018
    ···

    Regardless of whether you think Climate Change is real or not; the pollution that is said to cause climate change, is real. The pollution and toxins that are allowed to be dumped int water , air and earth are killing people, wildlife and environment and ecosystems and making all sick. Therefore, we need to address all pollution.

    Like (5)
    Follow
    Share
  • Linda
    Voted Yes
    11/26/2018
    ···

    We were making a good start dealing with climate change or global warming or whatever you call people & industry’s effects on the planet. We must do more and do better. Regulations that create business standards and safety practices must be put in place. We must protect the environment. Our air and water quality must be pure. Our public lands must remain pristine wilderness with no fracking, drilling, mining, leasing, and hunting except to stop overpopulation. Our wild horses must not be rounded up and sold to slaughter houses; reserve grazing lands for wildlife not private leases. Our offshore waters must be banned from oil rigs; instead wind, solar, & wave rigs. Prevention is the goal, not cleanups. Safe workplaces are required to protect workers from chemical exposure. Require industry to invest in safe, clean operations. It’s the right thing to do.

    Like (4)
    Follow
    Share
  • Dave
    Voted Yes
    11/24/2018
    ···

    The Trump administration released a major new climate science report on Black Friday, that way no one would notice. By the way he does not believe scientists, doctors, lawyers, engineers, etc, anyway!

    Like (4)
    Follow
    Share
  • UnapologeticallyAmerican
    Voted No
    11/24/2018
    ···

    Meteorologists can’t accurately predict what the weather is going to be like next week much less what they can predict what the weather is going to be like 20 years from now.

    Like (4)
    Follow
    Share