National Climate Assessment Predicts Weather Extremes

Government report shows flooding, storms, and high tides on the horizon

Report shows potential weather extremes

The National Climate Assessment, mandated by the Global Change Research Act of 1990, was released Nov. 3. According to the assessment, the main cause of warming since the mid-20th century is credited to human activities. This warming can cause weather-related problems.

This comprehensive report created by 13 federal agencies details recent global environmental changes. Notably, the report specifies that the global average sea level has risen by about 7 to 8 in. since 1990 and will continue to rise. This rise of sea level will coincide with increased daily tidal flooding in more than 25 Atlantic and Gulf Coast Cities. “Changes in the characteristics of extreme events are particularly important for human safety, infrastructure, agriculture, water quality and quantity, and natural ecosystems,” according to the climate report. Additionally, the report predicts future climate conditions based on the trends noted in the study.

A slew of extreme weather activities are predicted to increase in probability, including flooding and storm-related incidents. Regarding storms and coastal flooding, the assessment states in the executive summary, “Assuming storm characteristics do not change, sea level rise will increase the frequency and extent of extreme flooding associated with coastal storms, such as hurricanes.” For more extensive details of the report pertinent to flooding visit Ch. 9: Extreme Storms; Ch. 12: Sea Level Rise; and Ch. 13 Ocean Acidification and Other Ocean Changes.

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