Here are some important questions about the US Department of Agriculture’s latest report on the weather patterns that are causing drought in the US and Australia:
An Australian report last week said that “drought has been exacerbated by the long-term warming trends that are expected to persist into the 21st century”.
However, the report also said the report had been “too optimistic”, and noted that the Australian Government “has failed to recognise the impact of climate change on the severity of Australian droughts”.
The report said that while Australia’s weather was generally good, there were “significant concerns” over its agricultural productivity.
It said Australia’s water resources are under pressure because of “extreme rainfall events” in the past.
However, it also noted that “in most areas, rainfall is now well above average”.
The report was released on Thursday, after months of intense public debate and intense scrutiny.
Australian scientists and climate scientists from around the world joined the UN climate change conference in Lima, Peru, to discuss the report.
In the weeks leading up to the report’s release, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) was criticised for releasing an “urgent, but incomplete” report that found “significant uncertainties” in some of the science behind the climate change report.
The EPA said that the report was incomplete and would take several years to produce.
The report has not been peer-reviewed and the EPA did not publish it online.
The EPA’s draft report was published in January.
“The EPA has a responsibility to ensure that the science in its draft report is robust and does not support the conclusion that climate change has a significant impact on precipitation and climate in the United States and Australia,” the EPA said in a statement.
However, the EPA’s report was criticised by several organisations, including the National Climate Assessment (NCA), which was commissioned by the US Government.
NCA Director David Wojcik said the EPA had not consulted him before releasing the report and that the draft report “does not reflect the best available science”.
“This is a complete, incomplete, and unsupported statement,” Mr Wojcek said in an email.
NCA was also critical of the EPA report’s focus on the past, rather than the future.
“We strongly urge the EPA to revise the draft study to address the scientific and technical challenges associated with climate change and to update its methodology to reflect current knowledge,” he said.
Scientists from the University of Queensland’s School of Climate and Environmental Sciences and the University and State University of New South Wales, as well as the Australian Research Council and the Climate Change Institute of Australia, also criticised the EPA.
“The draft report ignores the impact that the climate system is having on the Australian and US agricultural and forestry systems, and ignores the fact that these systems are experiencing very high levels of rainfall and snowfall, and drought,” the report said.
Climate scientist Andrew Freedman from the Australian National University said that, although the draft document had not been reviewed by the EPA, it “clearly indicates that there is a significant lack of understanding about climate change, and it is unclear how much longer that will continue.”
He also criticised a line in the report that said “there is no evidence that the impacts of climate warming are worsening” and said “a more nuanced assessment” should be published.
‘Drought will persist in many areas’The report said the United Nations had been concerned that “the impact of global warming on the agricultural sector” was not yet understood.
“There is also concern about the impact on the wetland ecosystem,” the IPCC said.
“However, these concerns may be exaggerated given the high degree of uncertainty in the projections.”
The climate change research agency said it “recognises that drought is a complex problem, and the potential for drought to persist in some areas will remain for decades to come”.
However the report highlighted the need for more research into the link between climate change impacts and droughty conditions in the environment.
It said that scientists were “deeply concerned about the role that agricultural and other land uses play in contributing to climate change”.
Australian Agriculture Minister Peter Dutton has called for the draft draft report to be published online, saying that the information in it is “critical”.
Mr Dutton said the Government was “extremely concerned” about the draft, which he said showed that “there has been a significant underestimation of the impacts that climate variability has had on the frequency of drought”.
ABC climate reporter Peter Lawther said the draft was “totally inadequate” and that there was “no need for any further research”.
Follow our live blog here