Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Hot Topic

Today's Washington Post includes this article on a new report from the US Climate Change Science Program (commissioned by the Dept of Agriculture). Main takeaway? Juliet Eilperin writes:

Global warming is already affecting the nation's forests, water resources, farmland and wildlife, and will have serious negative consequences over the next 25 to 50 years The scientific assessment...carried out by 38 scientists inside and outside the government...provides the most detailed look in nearly eight years at how climate change is reshaping the American landscape.

The report...synthesizes a thousand scientific papers, highlights how human-generated carbon dioxide emissions from burning fossil fuels have already translated into more frequent forest fires, reduced snowpack and increased drought, especially in the West.
Eilperin quotes Anthony C. Janetos, director of the Joint Global Change Research Institute of the University of Maryland and the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory:

"They imagine all these ecological impacts are in some distant future," said Janetos... "They're not in some distant future. We're experiencing them now."
Brad Plumer writes at The New Republic:

It's a good reminder, too, that even if the world does get its act together to avert runaway global warming ... there are plenty of changes that won't be preventable, and the United States ought to start worrying about adaptation as well as mitigation.
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posted at 1:18:00 PM by Neil

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