The News is Not Good:
Call To Action
Climate Change is no longer a worry for the future - its here now. Don't count on any help from Conservatives or Republicans; they are so tied to industry that they just don't care about the environment. Remember that, when you head to the polls. Also remember, when you read news online, that there are many mis-informed bloggers; don't trust what you read on random websites. Some of those who speak out against climate change are simply afraid of change in general. This new report from the US Government had input from many sources, and is firmly based on science.
One big focus of the report is on water and water scarcity. This will become an increasingly important topic in the years and decades to come.
For example the report details what people living in Idaho are already seeing: warmer winters, more early runoff, leading to hotter and dryer summers and more wildfires. You can find 'armchair bloggers' on the internet claiming skepticism but in the real world, people can see what is happening. Changes in the water cycle are reducing available water in the whole Northwest, especially California. Coastal regions are starting to see changes in habitat, and rising ocean acidity. Coral reefs continue to degrade. Forest mortality is on the rise with increase in tree diseases, less water, and more forest fires; which will also lead to different kinds of trees that are smaller and less absorptive of CO2. There are many projected risks in the report as well as seeing effects now.
The new report from the US Government is called the National Climate Assessment; a 1,300 page report produced by 300 scientists, that looks at all aspects of how Climate Change will affect Americans. This report follows other, recent reports including one from the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate change), an education campaign from the AAAS (American Association for the Advancement of Science), and reports from the National Academy of Sciences and the Royal Society (British). The Obama administration will use the report as the basis for legislative proposals over the next 2 years. A primary goal is reducing emissions in power plants.
Hopefully this report can help educate people, raise awareness of the need for action, reduce emissions, increase the number of climate projects that people start, help increase spending on all government levels for Climate Change planning and action, and reduce skepticism about those who do not yet understand Climate Change.
Not all effects of Climate Change are bad. A warmer winter means longer growing seasons. But that in turn can worse climate change as we use more nitrogen-based fertilizers. As ice melts, formerly ice-bound areas will become arable land; that has utility, but it also means sea level rise which puts coastline communities at risk.
Water is a prime concern. Both surface and groundwater supplies are shrinking, which puts many at risk. California agriculture is of particular concern at this time.
2012 was the warmest year on record, as long as we have kept records. And right now in California, 77% of the state is in a drought emergency - and summer has not even started yet.
No one will be spared form Climate Changed. Biodiversity will be impacted, and indigenous people will be affected including Native Americans in the US, Aborigines in Australia, and others.