Buried on Black Friday: Fourth National Climate Assessment Volume II Released


The U.S. government released a highly-anticipated report on global climate change today, raising concerns that they may have been trying to bury the news amidst the busiest shopping day of the year. The National Climate Assessment Volume II wasn’t expected to be released until December, but it was announced on November 23 that the release date had been moved up to Black Friday.

The first volume of the report was particularly troublesome for climate change deniers, as it stated unequivocally that, yes, the climate is getting warmer, and humans are the cause of it. Furthermore, the initial report linked events like the California wildfires to climate change and stated that unless something changes, they would only get worse.

Today’s report is just as dire. Volume II delved into the impacts, risks and necessary adaptations in the United States. Highlights from the report include:

  • Climate change impacts are already being felt across the U.S. in the form of more intense weather events happening more frequently and changes in average climate conditions.
  • Lower-income and marginalized communities are at greatest risks and will experience greater impacts.
  • Substantial and sustained mitigation efforts on a global scale are necessary to prevent losses to U.S. infrastructure and property.
  • Failure to participate in these mitigation efforts could significantly impede economic growth.
  • Climate change affects significant risks to infrastructure, population growth, water resources, food production, energy and transportation systems, public health, international trade, and international security.
  • Mitigation efforts currently are not enough to avoid these substantial risks and damages to the environment, economy, and human health in the coming decades.

Although Donald Trump was a long-time climate change denier, he recently backed away slightly from those claims in an interview with CBS News’ 60 Minutes. However, one has to wonder if the timing of this report wasn’t changed on purpose. The Trump administration has a history of removing and burying news related to climate change on government websites.

It does seem plausible that moving the timing of this particular release to the busiest shopping day of the year was an attempt to distract from and potential bury the news that the U.S. must put forward a much greater effort in mitigating the effects of climate change.

You can read Volume II of the Fourth National Climate Assessment here.


Jenn Bentley is a writer and editor originally from Cadiz, Kentucky. Her writing has been featured in publications such as The Examiner, The High Tech Society, FansShare, Yahoo News, and others. When she’s not writing or editing, Jenn spends her time raising money for Extra Life and advocating for autism awareness. Be sure to check out her other articles and reports here.

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