With a climate denier in the Oval Office, a "fossil fuel puppet" heading the Environmental Protection Agency, and Big Oil lobbyists filling the ranks of secretive deregulatory teams, a new report by National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) confirmed that 2016 was the hottest-and in some ways most alarming-year on record.
The policies, which were announced in February on the heels of Donald Trump's inauguration, also dovetailed with a memo by the head of NRCS James Bramblett to his staff acknowledging that the priorities of the former president, wasn't in sync with that of the Trump administration's views on whether climate change existed.
"For any given month during 2016, 12% or more of global land was experiencing at least severe drought conditions, the longest such stretch in the record", the report said.
The four scientists who spoke with Gizmodo are just a tiny fragment of the greater climate science community, which almost universally agrees humans are responsible for climate change, which virtually all of them also agree could have disastrous impacts on the human species. This was the sixth consecutive year global sea level has increased compared to the previous year.
But there are other climate change-related records that have flown more under the radar.
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Extinction risk under climate change per continent, reflecting higher vulnerability for hot regions (tropics) and smaller land masses/islands.
The rising temperature, the report said, stems from last year's El Niño weather pattern in the Pacific Ocean as well as the planet's long-term warming trend.
"Temperature. affects agricultural productivity, energy use, human health, infrastructure, natural ecosystems and many other essential aspects of society and the natural environment".
And, yes. Humans have played a huge role in it.
The newspaper cited one government scientist who worked on the report as saying that they fear that the Trump administration could change or suppress the report, which is now awaiting approval from the White House.
- Antarctic sea ice levels are lower than ever recorded. Recent record-setting years of temperature highs will become "relatively common".
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Some extreme weather events increased, such as unusually high tropical cyclone activity. Indeed, the report opens by explaining that "the dominant greenhouse gases released into Earth's atmosphere - carbon dioxide, methane, and nitrous oxide - all continued to increase and reach new record high abundances".
Globally, sea level hit a record high a year ago, marking the sixth consecutive annual increase.
The president has taken a hard stance on climate change; at times calling it a "hoax" by China.
Via Climate Central: "The 2016 average temperature for the contiguous US was 54.9°F, which was 2.2°F above the 1981-2010 average, this is the second warmest since records began".
"The American people deserve an honest, open, transparent discussion about this supposed threat to this country", Pruitt said on a North Dakota radio show Wednesday.
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