The newest National Climate Assessment compiled by 13 federal agencies has contradicted the Trump administration’s declarations on global warming. The White House had little choice but to sign off on the findings, which blame humans as the “extremely likely” cause for the past 3 years registering as the “warmest years on record for the globe” as well as the consistent warming trend of the past century. This news arrives despite Trump’s cabinet opposing the notion that human activity could have such an effect.
The report follows not long after EPA Chief Scott Pruitt, who once sued the Obama administration for the Clean Power Act, helped Trump dismantle Obama’s signature climate change policy. Trump’s campaign was also plagued by his own claim that global warming was a Chinese hoax, but this new report leaves no wiggle room to blame anything other than people for the “unambiguous” warming trend “over the past 115 years”:
“It is extremely likely that human influence has been the dominant cause of the observed warming since the mid-20th century. For the warming over the last century, there is no convincing alternative explanation supported by the extent of the observational evidence.”
The agencies’ scientists point toward automobiles, fossil fuels, and the destruction of forests as the chief causes for the trend. Further the report projects that the year 2100 will see sea levels rise by as much as 8 feet. This will not only wipe out coastal communities but could cause even more ferocious natural disasters than the fires and hurricanes we’ve seen this year.
The Washington Post notes that the White House didn’t even try to stop this (mandated-by-law) report, which must be a source of embarrassment, from coming out. Months ago, Pruitt went on record to say that “I would not agree that [humans are] a primary contributor” to climate change, and even an unusually active hurricane season saw Pruitt shut down the discussion.
How the administration reacts to this news should be telling. Only this week, Energy Secretary Rick Perry was adding to his colleagues’ love for fossil fuels by bizarrely suggesting that they can help prevent sexual assault. As silly as that was, there may be a presidential tweet on the way that’s even worse.