Reports Reiterate Link Between Environment and Economy
Two new reports reiterate the scientific veracity of anthropogenic climate change while reinforcing the interconnectedness of the economy and the environment. The World Economic Forum (WEF) Global Risks Report 2013 clearly points to the interrelationship between the environment and the economy.
A draft of the third National Climate Assessment Report indicates that climate change is both an environmental and economic issue. The draft report was prepared by a federal committee and offers a comprehensive analysis of the latest and best peer-reviewed science on the extent and impacts of global warming on the US. The report restates the fact that climate change will have a wide range of impacts ranging from agriculture to water.
The draft report was prepared by a Federal Advisory Committee known as the "National Climate Assessment and Development Advisory Committee" (NCADAC). The report was mandated by Congress in 1990 with the passage of the Global Change Research Act, which requires that a national climate assessment be conducted every four years and the results be issued to the President and Congress. As a consequence of the 1990 legislation, the US Global Change Research Program was formed, which is an inter-governmental body involving 13 federal agencies and departments.
The 2013 NCADAC report, which engaged more than 240 authors, indicated that one of the salient reasons given for the rapidly changing climate is the copious burning of fossil fuels. Following two consecutive years of extreme weather, the report makes the connection between the increased incidence and severity of extreme weather and anthropogenic climate change.
According to Munich Reinsurance America, the North America has seen a five-fold increase in natural disasters in the past 30 years. In 2011, the German reinsurance giant also produced a report called "Severe Weather in North America." According to the report, between 1980 and 2011, the overall losses from weather catastrophes was over $1 trillion. In 2012, there were a record number of extreme weather events which were eclipsed only by the number of such events in 2011. Hurricane Sandy alone cost an estimated $60 billion.
In an emailed statement, Gene Karpinski, the president of the League of Conservation Voters, said the NCADAC report confirms what many Americans already know: "If we put off action on climate change, the costs of addressing its impacts will only rise and this extreme weather will be just the beginning. This report should serve as a wake-up call that it's time to act."
Continue reading at Global Warming Is Real.
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