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2014-05-06. U.S. Climate Has Already Changed, Study Finds, Citing Heat and Floods.

posted May 7, 2014, 6:24 AM by Alan Gould   [ updated May 7, 2014, 6:32 AM ]

For GSS Climate Change chapter 9. Excerpt: The effects of human-induced climate change are being felt in every corner of the United States, scientists reported Tuesday, with water growing scarcer in dry regions, torrential rains increasing in wet regions, heat waves becoming more common and more severe, wildfires growing worse, and forests dying under assault from heat-loving insects. ...The report is ... region-by-region documentation of changes occurring in the United States, .... ...The study, known as the National Climate Assessment, was prepared by a large scientific panel overseen by the government and received final approval at a meeting Tuesday. ...One of the report’s most striking findings concerned the rising frequency of torrential rains. Scientists have expected this effect for decades because more water is evaporating from a warming ocean surface, and the warmer atmosphere is able to hold the excess vapor, which then falls as rain or snow. But even the leading experts have been surprised by the scope of the change. ...over the past half-century, the proportion of precipitation that is falling in very heavy rain events has jumped by 71 percent in the Northeast, by 37 percent in the Midwest and by 27 percent in the South, the report found. ...“There is mounting evidence that harm to the nation will increase substantially in the future unless global emissions of heat-trapping gases are greatly reduced,” the report warned.... http://www.nytimes.com/2014/05/07/science/earth/climate-change-report.html.  By Justin Gillis, New York Times. Other articles/reports: