Australian news, and some related international items

How the climate crisis is already harming America – photo essay

How the climate crisis is already harming America – photo essay
The damage rising temperatures bring is been seen around the country, with experts fearing worse is to come, Guardian , by Oliver Milman in New York, with photographs compiled by Gina Lachman 21 Aug 20

Climate change is not an abstract future threat to the United States, but a real danger that is already harming Americans’ lives, with “substantial damages” to follow if rising temperatures are not controlled.

This was the verdict of a major US government report two years ago. The Trump administration’s attitude to climate change was perhaps illustrated in the timing of the report’s release, which was in the news dead zone a day after Thanksgiving.

The report was the fourth National Climate Assessment (NCA), and is seen as the most authoritative official US snapshot of the impacts of climate change being seen already, and the estimate of those in the future.

It is the combined work of 13 federal agencies, and it warns how climate-related threats to Americans’ physical, social and economic wellbeing are rising, and will continue to grow without additional action.

Here we look at the regions of the US where it describes various impacts, with photography from these areas showing people and places in the US where climate change is very real.

If there was a ground zero for the climate crisis in the US, it would probably be located in Alaska. The state, according to the national climate assessment, is “ on the front lines of climate change and is among the fastest warming regions on Earth”.Sign up to the Green Light email to get the planet’s most important stories

Since the early 1980s, Alaska’s sea ice extent in September, when it hits its annual minimum, has decreased by as much as 15% per decade, with sea ice-free summers likely this century. This has upended fishing routines for remote communities that rely upon caught fish for their food.

The thinning ice has seen people and vehicles collapse into the frigid water below, hampering transport routes.Roads and buildings have buckled as the frozen soils underneath melt. Wildfires are also an increasing menace in Alaska, with three out of the top four fire years in terms of acres burned occurring since 2000. The state’s residents are grappling with a rapidly changing environment that is harming their health, their supply of food and livelihoods.

Last year was the hottest year on record in Alaska
, 6.2F warmer than the long-term average.

North-east – snowstorms, drought, heatwaves and flooding…………

Northern Great Plains – flash droughts and extreme heat………

Midwest – heavy rains and soil erosion……

South-east – flooding in Louisiana………

Southern Great Plains – Hurricane Harvey……

South-west – drought in the Colorado river basin reduced Lake Mead by more than half since 2000…….

North-west – wildfire increases and associated smoke…..
Hawaii and Pacific islands – coral bleaching….….

Caribbean – hurricanes….

August 22, 2020 - Posted by | General News

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