Nov 23, 2018

The Black Friday climate report

Flames from the Camp fire burn near a home atop a ridge near Big Bend, California. Photo: Josh Edelson/AFP/Getty Images

The Trump administration didn't interfere with the content of today's grim report about the damage we're already seeing from climate change. It just released the report in a way that will draw the least attention possible: by putting it out on Black Friday.

  • That's a good way to minimize the impact of a science-heavy report that clashes with President Trump's attitude toward climate change.


  • Today's report is the second volume of the Fourth National Climate Assessment, a congressional mandated report.
  • In contrast to the first volume, released in November 2017, this one contains more information specific to vital U.S. economic sectors, regions and national interests.
  • At times, the report reads like a point-by-point rebuttal to Trump's climate change statements and policies, including his multiple claims that forest mismanagement is the reason why such devastating wildfires have occurred in the West.
  • The report's chapter on the Southwest, for example, cites evidence showing that the area burned during the past several decades "was more closely related to climate factors than to fire suppression, local fire management, or other non-climate factors."
  • It says climate change is also a big threat to U.S. trade and exports, and the approach of not acting on it to spur economic growth will backfire in the end.

Between the lines: On a press call this afternoon, reporter after reporter pressed the Trump administration on who decided the timing of the release and when. Their responses — the scientists stayed silent, and let a spokesperson handle the answers — suggested the timing was out of the scientists' hands.

The bottom line, per the climate report: Lives and property are already at risk in the U.S. due to climate change.

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Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett in 2012. Photo: John Gress/Corbis via Getty Images

Six people died in a shooting at the Molson Coors Brewing Company in Milwaukee on Wednesday, including the gunman, Mayor Tom Barrett told reporters at a Wednesday evening press conference with local police.

Details: All of the victims worked at the brewery complex, as did the shooter who died of "an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound," police confirmed in a statement late Wednesday.

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Coronavirus updates: South Korea case count tops 2,000

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's Health Ministry. Note: China numbers are for the mainland only and U.S. numbers include repatriated citizens.

33 people in California have tested positive for the coronavirus, and health officials are monitoring 8,400 people who have recently returned from "points of concern," Gov. Gavin Newsom said Thursday.

The big picture: COVID-19 has killed more than 2,850 people and infected over 83,000 others in some 50 countries and territories. The novel coronavirus is now affecting every continent but Antarctica, and the WHO said Wednesday the number of new cases reported outside China has exceeded those inside the country for the first time.

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The worst humanitarian crisis of Syria’s brutal civil war is colliding today with what could be the war’s most dangerous geopolitical showdown, after at least 29 Turkish troops were killed in an airstrike.

The big picture: The fighting is taking place in Idlib in northwest Syria, where a ferocious Syrian and Russian offensive has displaced 1 million civilians and infuriated Turkey, which borders the region.

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