November 5, 2017

Whitehouse Statement on Federal Climate Report

Washington, DC – Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, a member of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee and Co-Chair of the Senate Climate Task Force, released the following statement on portions of the National Climate Assessment, including the final draft of the Climate Science Special Report, released Friday:   

“The writing is on the wall.  The inescapable science, compiled by the top experts from throughout the federal government, shows that climate change touches every corner of the country.  Temperatures are climbing.  Seas are rising.  Ocean waters are acidifying.  Fires grow more frequent and severe, and fire seasons longer.  Storms grow more frequent and intense, menacing wide swaths of America with each blow.

“And the symptoms of climate change are plain.  Vulnerable populations in downwind states like Rhode Island cope with air that carries more pollution.  Anglers have seen the catches that formed their parents and grandparents’ livelihoods flee to cooler waters.  Woodsmen harvest distressed and changing forests.  Farmers till land subject to more frequent droughts and sudden, drenching rains.

“Scott Pruitt and the other fossil fuel hacks marbled through the Trump administration can do their best to muddy these findings, but they are too clear and honest a warning to ignore.  It is time for the President to turn away from the industry-captured and corrupt forces that have shaped his climate policy to this point and heed the facts.”

The National Climate Assessment is a federally mandated, quadrennial report developed by leading scientist from 13 federal agencies that details the extent of climate change driven by manmade greenhouse gas emissions and its consequences.  The Climate Science Special Report, a draft of which came to light in August, sharply contradicts statements by President Trump and members of his cabinet about mankind’s role in climate change and the extent of our ability to predict future climate change.  In addition to the Climate Science Special Report, a draft of the Assessment’s volume examining the effects of climate change on humans and the environment was released for public comment.


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