Global warming may land U.S. in hot water

Tue, 2007-04-17 11:46Bill Miller
Bill Miller's picture

Global warming may land U.S. in hot water

A 67-page report on North American climate effects, which is part of an international report on climate-change impact, identified “water at large” as the central global-warming problem for the U.S. The report was released at a press conference featuring eight American scientists who were lead authors of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change study.

The report said reduced snow melt supplying water for the Sacramento Valley in California means that by 2020 there won‘t be enough water “to meet the needs of the community.” On the East Coast, rising sea levels will make storm surge “the No. 1 vulnerability for the metropolitan East Coast.”

Even the air will become more deadly. More heat means about a 4 to 5 percent increase in smog-related deaths.

The scientists held out hope, however, that dramatic cuts in fossil fuel emissions could prevent much of the harm they are predicting. But the U.S. government — and the rest of the world — has to act now.

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Problems caused by climate change are likely already dangerous and global warming may be irreversible, according to a draft science report by a United Nations committee.

The Intergovernmental Panel of Climate Change (IPCC) report, leaked earlier this week to a number of major media organizations, said continued greenhouse gas emissions caused primarily by burning oil, coal and natural gas will probably increase the likelihood of  “severe, pervasive and irreversible impacts for people and ecosystems.”

The New York Times...

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