Administration issues dire climate change report, amid regulatory push

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This file photo shows the cracked-dry bed of the Almaden Reservoir in San Jose, Calif.

The Obama administration fueled its push for energy regulations with a massive new report Tuesday linking climate change to extreme weather across the country and warning of more “climate disruption” if the nation doesn’t change its ways.

The National Climate Assessment, four years in the making, gave a region-by-region breakdown of how climate change is impacting the United States — in the form of droughts, heat waves and increasingly intense hurricanes, according to the report.

“Climate change, once considered an issue for a distant future, has moved firmly into the present,” the 840-page report states. “Corn producers in Iowa, oyster growers in Washington state and maple syrup producers in Vermont are all observing climate-related changes that are outside of recent experience.”

The report predicts that the weather-related repercussions of climate change “are expected to become increasingly disruptive across the nation throughout this century and beyond.”

The report, though, quickly came under fire from Republicans, who said the administration would use it to muscle through job-killing regulations.

“Instead of making the environment drastically better, the president’s strategy will make the climate for unemployed Americans even worse,” Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyo., said in a statement. “The American people have made it clear that they want Washington to focus on the economy and make it easier for them to find good jobs. Once again, President Obama is completely ignoring their concerns — and doubling down today on extreme regulations that will put more Americans out of work.”

In a counterpoint of sorts to the report, Barrasso and other congressional Republicans representing western states released their own findings later Tuesday morning highlighting state efforts to protect the environment. The report highlights local air and water policies, and criticizes “one-size-fits-all” regulations it accuses the administration of imposing.

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