|History of U.S. Global Change Research Program|
By "this report" I mean the report required by Public Law 101-606, 104 Stat. 3096-3104 (PDF), passed by congress in 1990 then signed into law by President George H.W. Bush (Global Climate Change Research Act).
(The link under the graphic, above, details the history of that law.)
A copy of the latest draft version of the legally required report is now available (2017 US climate report, PDF, final PDF).
|Play it again Sam|
The one thing that denialists now in power do not want us to know is the truth that is based upon the facts (The Shapeshifters of Bullshitistan - 2, Agnotology: The Surge - 16).
I suppose we should read the report while we can ... so ... let's look at some of the content:
"CSSR TOD: DO NOT CITE, QUOTE, OR DISTRIBUTE(U.S. Global Change Research Program, p. 3, PDF). Why would the Fake Based Administration not want information about the United States to be available for use by the United States?
About This Report
As a key input into the Fourth National Climate Assessment (NCA4), the U.S. Global Change Research Program (USGCRP) oversaw the production of this special, stand-alone report of the state of science relating to climate change and its physical impacts. The Climate Science Special Report (CSSR) serves several purposes for NCA4, including providing 1) an updated detailed analysis of the findings of how climate change is affecting weather and climate across the United States, 2) an executive summary that will be used as the basis for the science summary of NCA4, and 3) foundational information and projections for climate change, including extremes, to improve “end-to-end” consistency in sectoral, regional, and resilience analyses for NCA4. This report allows NCA4 to focus more heavily on the human welfare, societal, and environmental elements of climate change, in particular with regard to observed and projected risks, impacts, adaptation options, regional analyses, and implications (such as avoided risks) of known mitigation actions.
Much of this report is intended for a scientific and technically savvy audience, though the Executive Summary is designed to be accessible to a broader audience."
Would it really hurt us that "bigly" to prepare, like we do in any insurance policy risk management scenario, for some of this?
For example, sea level change:
3. Relative sea level (RSL) rise in this century will vary along U.S. coastlines due, in part, to: changes in Earth’s gravitational field and rotation from melting of land ice, changes in ocean circulation, and vertical land motion (very high confidence). For almost all future GMSL rise scenarios, RSL rise is likely to be greater than the global average in the U.S. Northeast and the western Gulf of Mexico. In intermediate and low GMSL rise scenarios, it is likely to be less than the global average in much of the Pacific Northwest and Alaska. For high GMSL rise scenarios, it is likely to be higher than the global average along all U.S. coastlines outside Alaska (high confidence).(ibid, p. 413, PDF). That sea level change section is bolstered by another report, from another source, that has already been released:
4. The annual occurrences of daily tidal flooding—exceeding local thresholds for minor impacts to infrastructure—have increased 5- to 10 fold since the 1960s in several U.S. coastal cities (very high confidence). Rates of increase, which are accelerating in over 25 Atlantic and Gulf Coast cities, are fastest where elevation thresholds are lower, local RSL rise is higher, or extreme variability is less (very high confidence). Tidal flooding will continue increasing in depth and frequency in similar manners this century (very high confidence).
"Sea level rise caused by global warming is usually cast as a doomsday scenario that will play out so far into the future, it’s easy to ignore. Just ask anyone in South Florida, where new construction proceeds apace. Yet already, more than 90 coastal communities in the United States are battling chronic flooding, meaning the kind of flooding that’s so unmanageable it prompts people to move away.(National Geographic). Hey deniers, you can run but you can't hide, because you are in the same boat the rest of us are in.
That number is expected to roughly double to more than 170 communities in less than 20 years."
Anyway, getting back to the U.S. Global Change Research Program Report, I was pleased to see that this report is more accurate and sophisticated than the most recent IPCC report (an international, rather than a national report).
The authors of this report understand that gravity is not a hoax, and even cite a paper by the professor who gives the presentation in the video below (Professor Mitrovica):
"Second, the location of land ice melting imparts distinct regional “static-equilibrium fingerprints” on sea level, based on gravitational, rotational, and crustal deformation effects (Mitrovica et al. 2011) (Figure 12.1a–d). For example, sea level falls near a melting ice sheet because of the resulting changes in the distribution of mass on the planet and thus in the planet’s gravitational field."(ibid, p. 414, PDF, emphasis added). That is a very good development in the science of sea level change (The Gravity of Sea Level Change, 2, 3, 4), so don't give up hope that they will also pick up on "ghost water" (The Ghost-Water Constant, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9).
Not only that, in another positive move, they are moving away from the "thermal expansion is the major cause of sea level rise in the 20th and 21st centuries" myth:
"Sea level change is driven by a variety of mechanisms operating at different spatial and temporal scales. Global mean sea level (GMSL) rise is primarily driven by two factors: 1) increased volume from thermal expansion of the ocean as it warms, and 2) increased mass from melt additions of ice locked in mountain glaciers and the Antarctic and Greenland ice sheets. Satellite (altimeter and GRACE) and in situ (Argo) measurements show that, since 2005, about one third of GMSL rise has been from steric changes (thermal expansion) and about two thirds from the addition of mass to the ocean, primarily from melting land-based ice (Llovel et al. 2014; Leuliette 2015; Merrifield et al. 2015; Chambers et al. 2016). The overall amount (mass) of ocean water, and thus sea level, is also affected to a lesser extent by changes in global land water storage associated with dams and reservoirs, groundwater extraction, and global precipitation anomalies (Reager et al. 2016; Rietbroek et al. 2016; Wada et al. 2016), such as associated with the El Niño–Southern Oscillation (ENSO)."(ibid, p. 414, PDF, emphasis added). "One third" (thermal expansion) is not a major factor when compared to "two thirds" (ice melt water flowing into the oceans).
On that issue they are moving in the proper direction, however, they still have a ways to go, because "one third" is demonstrably in error, in terms of being way too high (On Thermal Expansion & Thermal Contraction - 21).
Now, go spread the good and bad news.
The previous post in this series is here.