Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Getting Ready for Climate Change Impacts in the USA

The administrative regions of the United State...
The administrative regions of the United States Environmental Protection Agency. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Climate Change Adaptation Plan(55 page pdf, Cross-EPA Work Group on Climate Change Adaptation Planning, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Jun. 29, 2012) 

Also discussed here: Unable to stop climate change, EPA prepares for it( Philip Bump, Grist, Feb. 8, 2013) 

Today we review a draft plan prepared by the Environmental Protection Agency to deal with the known and likely impacts associated with climate change in the USA. The document is comprehensive, touching on such diverse areas as air pollution-health issues, the impact of more extremes of temperature and rainfall on flooding in communities, the impact on waste disposal and the challenges all this means to the regulation and enforcement side of EPA’s mandate. As one commentator opined “Too bad we didn’t do more a few decades ago to keep all of this from happening.”  

Key Quotes: 

“We live in a world in which the climate is changing…with climate changing more rapidly than society has experienced in the past, the past is no longer a good predictor of the future.” 

“Through climate adaptation planning, EPA will continue to protect human health and the environment, but in a way that accounts for the effects of climate change. “ 

“In the United States, temperatures are projected to warm substantially over the 21st century under all projections of future climate change. These changes pose risks for a wide range of human and environmental systems, including public health, the quality of the air we breathe and the water we drink, freshwater resources, the coastal environment, wildlife and ecosystems, infrastructure, economic activity, cultural resources and social well-being.” 

“Potential vulnerabilities remain difficult to assess in some areas because of limited scientific understanding of the potential impacts of climate change on some of EPA’s programs: 
• The effect of climate change on energy efficiency programs given changes in energy demand and supply. 
• The effects of climate change on multi-pollutant interactions in ecosystems …..”

“climate change could increase tropospheric ozone levels over broad areas of the country. Climate change also has the potential to lengthen the ozone season, and may increase individuals’ vulnerability to air pollution”
Enhanced by Zemanta

No comments:

Post a Comment