Scientists leak damning global warming report over fears President Trump would bury it
Federal government scientists despaired this week, as a draft report confirmed global warming is making ruinous advances. Amid fears the Trump administration would bury the report, one federal scientist leaked a draft copy to The New York Times to ensure it saw the light of day.
The report – created by scientists from no less than 13 federal agencies – was damning, confirming our worst fears relating to human impact on the environment. The study reveals how the average global temperature has risen by 1.6 degrees Fahrenheit since the Second Industrial Revolution of the mid-1800s. Alarmingly, the bulk of that change was made in the latter half of the 20th century, with a 1.2 degree increase since 1951.
Moreover, the report holds humans accountable for the lion’s share of the damage, citing a 95% likelihood that more than half of the global warming that’s taken place thus far could be attributed to human activity. There’s a 66% chance, it went on, that all global warming has been caused by people.
“The science is getting a lot more specific with being able to attribute the droughts, the floods, the heat waves, the specific events that we’re experiencing to climate change and our human fingerprint on the earth’s climate,” said the Environmental Defense Fund’s Jeremy Symons.
The report’s findings made for a stark contrast with the Trump administration’s position on climate change. Incidentally, the report was published just four days after Trump formally announced America’s withdrawal from the Paris climate accord, highlighting a striking discord between the president and the scientific agencies who work for him.
It’s not a new dynamic, either. Trump’s been sceptical of climate change for years now, much to the chagrin of, well, virtually every environmental scientist on earth. And it’s not just a sustained output of vitriolic tweets, either. Ramifications are real, with Trump’s budget proposal positing a 29.6% slash to the Environmental Protection Agency’s funds. With America firmly ensconced as the second biggest polluter on the planet, the potential damage is phenomenal.
The White House, for its part, remained tight-lipped about plans to address the report. That is, if plans are underway at all. “Drafts of this report have been published and made widely available online months ago during the public comment period,” came the White House’s evasive response. Until the report is finalised, it confirmed, it will not issue further comment.