'Crime Against Humanity' and 'International Embarrassment': Trump Refuses to 'Believe' Climate Report

Gwen Vasquez
November 27, 2018

If you did not hear about the major new federal climate change report, the Trump administration will be pleased.

The congressionally mandated White House report said climate change would cost the United States economy billions of dollars by the end of the century, but Mr Trump said on Monday (local time) he did not believe the economic impacts would be destructive.

The report, which was written before California's recent deadly fires, also says the last few years have smashed records for damaging weather in the US, costing almost $400 billion since 2015. "It's a moral imperative", said Hillary Clinton in a statement Monday.

"To better assess the potential future effects of climate change, we need to focus on improving the transparency and accuracy of our modeling and projections", spokeswoman Lindsay Walters said in a statement. Another report, this one from the U.S. Geological Survey, found that almost a quarter of the country's carbon emissions come from fossil fuels produced on federal lands.

Trump has also rolled back Obama-era environmental and climate rules such as the Clean Power Plan, while seeking to boost output of oil, gas and coal for domestic use and for shipping to allies and partners.

Trump, administration officials and elected Republicans frequently say they can't tell how much of climate change is caused by humans and how much is natural.

However, he rejected the central warning in the National Climate Assessment, which said there will be hundreds of billions of dollars in losses by the end of the century due to climate change "without substantial and sustained global mitigation".

Thirteen government departments and agencies, from the Agriculture Department to NASA, were part of the committee that compiled the new report.

United States greenhouse-gas emissions have decreased a bit lately.

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The report goes on to detail the economic impact of climate change (hundreds of billions lost, with farms being hardest hit) and the physical toll it could take on our collective health, as factors like air quality, disease transmission by insects, food and water will 'increasingly threaten the health and well-being of the American people'.

The Trump administration is downplaying the importance of the findings.

The report avoids proposing policy changes.

In its release, the White House also pointed to a 14 percent drop in carbon emissions from 2005, an artificial benchmark based on when US emissions peaked. I think if we're going to move away from fossil fuels, it's got to be done through innovation.

U.S. President Donald Trump speaks to reporters outside the White House on November 26, 2018.

Climate change is already causing devastating consequences. He said the agreement would hurt the USA economy and said there was little evidence it would improve the environment.

- Washington Post, with additional reporting from Associated Press writer John Lemire. Hai Do was the editor.

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