National Academies Press: OpenBook

Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment (2018)

Chapter: Appendix B: Line Comments

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Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
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Appendix B. Line Comments

GENERAL

# Page/Line Comment
1 General The intended audience should be more clearly explained in the Front Matter of the draft NCA4 in order to indicate the broad range of possible users of information in the report.
2 General Similar usage of boxes across chapters would improve consistency across the report and provide readers with a clearer understanding of their general purpose.
3 Discussion of up scaling and downscaling within regional scales where data is available would be beneficial
4 The term “stressors” is used throughout the draft NCA4. It would be useful to provide a definition of what it means in the context of this report early in the draft document.
5 General Increased usage of subject headers would help to guide readers through the chapters. This includes noting whether initial paragraphs in each chapter are intended to be a summary or an introduction. Introductions should include references while summaries do not need to include references.
6 General It is recommended that the Front Matter (or an appendix) of the draft NCA4 provide information on how regions were determined and note more specifically the differences from the NCA3.
7 General The Committee generally found the redundancy within chapters due to repetitious text in the executive summaries, main text, and traceable accounts to be cumbersome. Depending on how the final NCA4 report and derivative products will be structured, the NCA4 authors should consider more concise ways in which to present the material, particularly avoiding duplication between the main text and traceable accounts.
8 General More information about the public engagement webinars and workshops for individual chapters would be beneficial to include. When was it, to whom, and how was participation solicited?
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
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1: OVERVIEW

# Page/Line Comment
9 P19/L35-P20/L2 The text implies that these water impacts will occur everywhere. It seems important in these high-level messages to acknowledge that there will be regional variation in droughts and floods.
10 P25/L35 Chapter numbers are incorrect: Chapter 29 is the draft NCA4 mitigation chapter and Chapter 28 is the adaption chapter.
11 P50/L12 The authors should mention that impacts vary by region, sector, and population vulnerability.
12 P50/L20-23 This sentence could also mention carbon capture and use after “including energy efficiency.”
13 P19/L22-29 Is “over the coming century” intended to mean the same as “by the end of the century”? It would seem useful to keep the same time frame for both statements.
14 P24/L10-11 The Committee recommends moving land-management practices to the end of this list of drivers, because it probably has the least impact on wildfires.
15 P24/L23 Change “resemble that” to “resemble those.”
16 P26/L3-14 The upbeat tone of this paragraph sends a message of “We can do it,” which is effective.
17 P29/L13-14 The graph of percent land area experiencing drought is the only short-term time series in this figure. Perhaps not surprisingly, it shows lots of variability, but the time series is not long enough to show a climate-driven trend. Can a drought-related parameter with a longer time series be used here instead? Without a longer time series or a clearer trend, this graph really is not informative to this general overview section.
18 P33/L32-33 The Alaska chapter says the climate is warming twice as fast as the global average (not MORE THAN twice as fast). Use the same time interval in the overview chapter as in the Alaska chapter and make sure the message is the same.
19 P37/L6-9 The Committee found no statement in the Alaska chapter saying that shellfish populations have been declining for 20 years and recommends the authors check this for consistency.
20 P45/L7 The time frame over which 1-4 ft sea level rise is expected is not stated. The RCP scenarios are also not stated. This makes it confusing to relate this statement to Figure 1.4.
21 P49/L33-34 The statement that emissions have stabilized is probably false. The Committee assumes that the authors mean to say that emissions are not increasing as rapidly. This should be clarified.
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
×
# Page/Line Comment
22 P54/L6 Delete the second occurrence of the word “access” in this sentence.

4: ENERGY SUPPLY, DELIVERY, AND DEMAND

# Page/Line Comment
23 P166/L23 High winds can also damage renewable energy generation and oil platforms, in addition to damaging the electricity transmission and distribution as noted here.
24 P165/L12 After the sentence about natural gas, there should be a sentence about renewable energy. After this insertion, the sentence “steps are being taken to ensure the safe and reliable” seems abrupt and unconnected to the previous sentence. Another paragraph where DOE’s voluntary partnership is mentioned could be useful. Alternatively, a slight revision could work, such as an addition like, “Many actions are underway across all energy sources to ensure … but much work remains to establish an energy system that can withstand current and future climate change risks.”
25 P171/L2 Maintaining additional natural gas in storage will help prevent against supply shocks and price spikes. Considering supply abundance, most modeling suggests that increased storage is not likely to increase gas or electricity prices.

5: LAND COVER AND LAND USE CHANGE

# Page/Line Comment
26 P189/L13 Demand for new settlements can also increase the economic cost of fire damage, as more homes move into wooded areas.
27 P189/L25 The authors could also mention policies designed to increase biofuel production.
28 P203/L16 It is not clear if the “promotes climate warming” here means that carbon dioxide emissions from deforestation will do this or if regional climates might be influenced through albedo and water and energy fluxes. Evidence presented on page 197, lines 1-10, focuses on local effects.
29 P192/L2128 This sentence describes approaches to “increasing this carbon storage” and includes in the list of approaches “development of new generation biofuels.” While the other approaches do result in increased carbon storage, there is nothing inherent in increased use of biofuels that will
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
×
# Page/Line Comment
result in carbon storage by themselves, but rather would create more incentive to process and burn biomass. It is suggested that this be deleted from the list.
30 P205/L5 The confidence section addresses impacts of climate change on “urbanization in the coastal zone,” but the only substantive text addressing the coastal zone is on page 195 in the draft chapter’s “state of the sector” section, where links to climate change impacts are not made (only land use land cover change is described). It would be useful to make the point, probably in the “state of the sector” section, that the changes that are described for the coastal zone lead to increased impacts.
31 P196/L16 A definition for the “business-as-usual scenario” is needed, and/or reference to the description of scenarios in the draft NCA4 Front Matter.
32 P197/L1423 There is some inconsistency in describing effects of aerosols (page 197, lines 14-15). They do not “reduce surface albedo,” but rather they “increase tropospheric albedo.” They reduce surface insolation. Lines 21-23 seem to get it right.
33 P199/L1214 The expectation of conversion of irrigated agricultural land to dryland (based on the Elliott et al. 2014 reference) is reasonable in the long run (year 2100), but misses the shorter-term trend of increased irrigation and the regional differentiation that is likely in these patterns (e.g., Great Lakes versus Great Plains).

See Brown, J. F., and M. S. Pervez (2014), Merging remote sensing data and national agricultural statistics to model change in irrigated agriculture, Agricultural Systems, 127, 28-40, doi:10.1016/j.agsy.2014.01.004.
34 P199/L16 The text says, “New policies will” The NCA4 authors do not know what new policies will do and it is not the job of the NCA4 authors to predict them. Policies certainly have affected patterns of agriculture in the past. It is recommended that this be deleted.

6: FORESTS

# Page/Line Comment
35 P221/L35 Insert “and spring” (revised text would say “winter and spring flooding”).
36 P222/L1015 Figure 6.5 is relevant for Pacific Northwest and some forests. Adaptation options to reduce hazardous fuels would not apply to mesic
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
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# Page/Line Comment
forests that burn infrequently and whose fires would be difficult to manage.
37 P223/L6 Add “fiber and wood products, fish and wildlife, and biodiversity” to the list of ecosystem services.
38 P223/L1112 Provide a reference for this sentence.
39 P224/L7 Define “large-scale disturbances.” Does this refer to area burned or intensity?
40 P224/L7-P225/L2 Provide temporal information for “An increase in” and “In recent years.”
41 P225/L7 Define the period of “record.”
42 P225/L11 Define “were lost.”
43 P226/L11 Define “human welfare.” Is this same as “human lives” mentioned on page 227, line 17?
44 P226/L14 Replace “would” by “will” or explain use of conditional tense.
45 P227/L13 Define “fire-prone forest ecosystems.” Does this mean they have experienced frequent, low severity fires in the past or that the dominant species have adaptations to survive fires?
46 P228/L7 Specify the region or forest type where text says “some parts of the western United States.”
47 P228/L14 An additional sentence is needed stating that the pattern, extent, and severity of future fires may be constrained by such breaks, provided that fire conditions do not overwhelm these barriers.
48 P228/L1618 This sentence should clarify that prescribed burning in southern forests is an example of fire-prone managed forests.
49 P229/L1217 More context for this sentence is needed. The fire suppression is in what type of forests and what type of insect outbreaks? Define what is meant by “reduced vigor.” Is “plant host” the same as “trees”?
50 P229/L26 Insert “dry settings such as” so that revised text says “now threatens dry settings, such as the pine barrens of.”
51 P230/L3 Replace “climate” with “moisture availability.”
52 P230/L13 Include recent references in addition to Hicke et al. 2012. See recommended citations at the end of the line comments for this chapter.
53 P230/L1314 This statement needs more explanation on the linkages between local short-term release of carbon dioxide and establishment of native plants.
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
×
# Page/Line Comment
54 P230/L19 Where do the mesic forests of the Pacific Northwest and Alaska fit into this scheme of water-limited versus energy-limited forests? Explaining this classification would be helpful.
55 P230/L2224 Does “some locations” in this case refer to forests near urban areas? Some specificity is needed.
56 P230/L3031 This sentence requires more information to explain the drought response of deciduous trees.
57 P230/L36 Define “vegetative” competition.
58 P231/L1 Replace “with” with “as a result of.”
59 P231/L3 The text that says “these effects” is an unclear reference.
60 P231/L5 Delete the word “margins” and revise text to say “elevation ranges.”
61 P231/L2022 Increased flooding from heavy rainfall events can occur even in the absence of tree mortality. This sentence needs geographic specificity.
62 P232/L3-4 The caption needs more information. What are the colors showing? Cumulative area impacted? What in the figure shows that individual and combined disturbances are important and important in what way?
63 P232/L8-9 Explain why future conversion is expected to slow down.
64 P233/L1-2 Since one of the key issues highlighted in this chapter is potential loss of forest land, it might be useful to specify the main processes causing forest loss in western forests. Is it mainly a result of wildfire and insect disturbances or is it human conversion of forest lands to other landcovers? Is it processes similar to those projected to occur, as described in the following paragraph?
65 P233/L25 Is there more rain in the spring months as well?
66 P233/L2729 Another result is earlier peak runoff in snow-fed headwater streams in the western U.S. “As a result…flushing of nutrients into streams has decreased.” The logic for this is unclear. Do late-melting snowbanks flush more nutrients than the same quantity of runoff caused by winter rains? Is it a difference in the total amount of precipitation and runoff or does the seasonal pattern of runoff influence how much nutrient flushing occurs?
67 P233/L33 Define “climate-related changes in forest structure.”
68 P233/L3435 Explain that beetle outbreaks and wildfire create forest openings and the resulting increase in surface run-off causes higher water yield.
69 P233/L38 Define “altered.”
70 P234/L5 Earlier snowmelt is primarily driven by increased temperatures, not by fires.
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
×
# Page/Line Comment
71 P234/L6 The word “value” (economic value?) is confusing. Perhaps replace this word with “magnitude.”
72 P234/L8 Western should not be capitalized.
73 P234/L20 Insert the word “first” (text should say “can first be reduced by”).
74 P234/L21 Replace “in response to the risk” with “to sustain reduced risk.”
75 P234/L2324 Explain why tree growth, carbon sequestration, and water supply are considered ecological risks. This is unclear.
76 P235/L2729 Stand reductions to increase forest resistance/resilience to fire, insects, and drought would be effective for some but not all forest types (e.g., mesic forests, high-elevation forests, deciduous hardwood forests). This sentence needs some qualifiers.
77 P236/L3-15 The topic of this paragraph is unclear. Application of what practices and their goal should be restated. Plantation management of tree species is appropriate in forests solely managed for their wood products, but does not cover large tracts of forests on federal lands, which have multiple use mandates. The emphasis on timber extraction is not balanced.
78 P236/L2023 Why does lower forest output lead to lower prices of products? Wouldn’t supply-demand relationships lead to the opposite effect?
79 P236/L23 The cited Vaughan and Mackes (2015) study reports on a survey of Colorado forestry contractors and does not address timber output versus prices or the efficacy of adaptation treatments and incentives. The point seems counterintuitive and needs more discussion.
80 P236/L25 What is “climate-smart” forest management?
81 P237/L2-P238/L6 Where is this photo taken? Describe where beaver reintroduction is underway.
82 P238/L8 More information about the public engagement webinar would be beneficial to include. When was it, to whom, and how was participation solicited?
83 P238/L2224 There is an unclear reference to “severe ecological disturbances” in light of reference to “other disturbances” in next sentence. More specificity or explanation of both types of disturbance is recommended.
84 P238/L24 There is an unclear reference to Hicke et al. 2016. Explain what is meant by “in combination with other disturbances.”
85 P238/L25 Abatzoglou and Kolden (2013) should be cited here for western U.S. forests.
Abatzoglou, J. T., and C. A. Kolden (2013), Relationships between climate and macroscale area burned in the western United States. International Journal of Wildland Fire 22:1003-1020.
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
×
# Page/Line Comment
86 P238/L25 Give time frame for phrase “in recent years.”
87 P238/L32 “Re-burns” have not been mentioned previously, so they should be defined and explained.
88 P238/L3233 The potential for subsequent fires also depends on fire-fighting and postfire management actions. Discussion of this is recommended.
89 P239/L3 This is the first mention of “historical range of variability.” It should be defined, referenced and discussed.
90 P239/L1720 Define “gradual climate change” in this paragraph and note that the examples cited come from North America and Europe. This statement should link to Chapter 7, “Ecosystems, Ecosystem Services, and Biodiversity.”
91 P239/L2325 This is an unclear statement. More specificity where the text says “can affect suitable habitat” is needed. Define or replace “elevation range margins” with “elevational ranges” or define “elevation range margins.”
92 P239/L3738 The cited Caldwell et al. 2016 study is a local study in North Carolina, which attributes lower runoff to a combination of changes to climate, structure, and species composition, not just climate. Reference to Roman et al. 2015 seems inappropriate for this point.
93 P240/L1618 Describe the long-term observations (and location) that are referred to here. It is a cryptic point.
94 P240/L33 This citation should say “McCarthy et al. 2006.” Wear and Coulson 2015 seems to be a better citation for this point.
95 P240/L36 Specify the locations (“some locations”) where this may be true.
96 P241/L1-4 This sentence somewhat overstates the conclusion of Kurz et al. 2008, which looks at the loss of carbon from mountain pine beetle outbreaks in British Columbia. It is a single study.
97 P241/L7 It would be helpful to provide some context for this statement as it does not apply equally to all forests (e.g., Pacific Coastal forests, eastern forests).
98 P241/L3536 Identify the location of the studies in the Cascades and state the duration of the impact (decreased reflectivity, etc.).
99 P241/L37 Explain how the conclusions of Luce et al. 2012 were informed by the more recent studies of Gleason et al. 2016 and Cooper et al. 2016. Luce et al. is an older study in a different region.
100 P242/L6-9 There are surprisingly few long-term (tree-ring) studies on carbon dioxide effects on tree growth in older trees. The authors may consider citing Gedalof and Berg (2010).
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
×
# Page/Line Comment
Gedalof, Z., and A. A. Berg (2010), Tree ring evidence for limited direct CO2 fertilization of forests over the 20th century, Global Biogeochemical Cycles, 24(3), doi:10.1029/2009GB003699.
101 P242/L6 Define “altered disturbance patterns.” Note that some of the uncertainty comes from the resolution of downscaled climate model projections.
102 P242/L8 This is unclear. What particular future trends in natural and socioeconomic systems are critical?
103 P242/L20 The statement of “reduced tree growth and carbon storage observations” needs specific context.
104 P242/L3035 This planning effort should be identified by name, location, and the organization doing the planning. The list is too general to be helpful without more information.
105 P242/L36-P243/L6 This discussion would benefit from literature on fire resilience efforts (i.e., living with fire). The cited Schoennagel et al. 2017 is a good start, but see additional suggestions in the reference list following the line comments for this chapter.
106 P243/L14 The reference to Worrall et al. 2013 seems inappropriate, since it addresses aspen decline.
107 P243/L1718 There is an unclear reference: “more abundant [than what]”?
108 P243/L24 Add “conservation of biodiversity or endangered species” and “protection of plants/places of special importance to indigenous peoples” to the list of specific actions.
Chapter 6-Suggested References
FIRE TRENDS AND LEGACY EFFECTS
  • Barnett, K., S. A. Parks, C. Miller, and H. T. Naughton (2016), Beyond fuel treatment effectiveness: Characterizing Interactions between fire and treatments in the US, Forests, 7(237), 1-12.
  • Dennison, P. E., S. C. Brewer, J. D. Arnold, and M. A. Moritz (2014), Large wildfire trends in the western United States, 1984-2011, Geophysical Research Letters, 41(8), 2928-2933.
  • Fulé, P. Z., J. E. Crouse, J. P. Roccaforte, and E. L. Kalies (2012), Do thinning and/or burning treatments in western USA ponderosa or Jeffrey pine-dominated forests help restore natural fire behavior? Forest Ecology and Management, 269, 68-81.
  • Hudak, A. T., I. Rickert, P. Morgan, E. Strand, S. A. Lewis, P. R. Robichaud, C. Hoffman, and Z. A. Holden (2011), Review of fuel treatment effectiveness in forests and rangelands and a case study from the 2007 megafires in central Idaho USA, General Technical
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
×
  • Report RMRS-GTR-252. U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station, Fort Collins, CO.

  • Kalies, E. L., and L. L. Y. Kent (2016), Tamm Review: Are fuel treatments effective at achieving ecological and social objectives? Forest Ecology and Management, 375, 84-95.
  • Kemp, K. B., P. E. Higuera, and P. Morgan (2015), Fire legacies impact conifer regeneration across environmental gradients in the U.S. northern Rockies, Landscape Ecology, 41(3), 619-636.
  • Picotte, J. J., B. Peterson, G. Meier, and S. M. Howard (2016), 1984-2010 trends in fire burn severity and area for the conterminous US, International Journal of Wildland Fire, 25(4), 413-420.
RAPID FOREST CHANGE AND DISTURBANCE SYNERGIES
  • Hansen, W. D., F. S. Chapin, H. T. Naughton, T. S. Rupp, and D. Verbyla (2016), Forest-landscape structure mediates effects of a spruce bark beetle (Dendroctonus rufipennis) outbreak on subsequent likelihood of burning in Alaskan boreal forest, Forest Ecology and Management, 369, 38-46.
  • Harvey, B. J., D. C. Donato, and M. G. Turner (2016), Drivers and trends in landscape patterns of stand-replacing fire in forests of the US Northern Rocky Mountains (1984-2010), Landscape Ecology, 31(10), 2367-2383.
  • Hart, S. J., T. Schoennagel, T. T. Veblen, and T. B. Chapman (2015), Area burned in the western United States is unaffected by recent mountain pine beetle outbreaks, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, doi:10.1073/pnas.1424037112.
LONG-TERM FOREST CHANGE
  • Dobrowski, S. Z., J. Abatzoglou, A. K. Swanson, J. A. Greenberg, A. R. Mynsberge, Z. A. Holden, and M. K. Schwartz (2013), The climate velocity of the contiguous United States during the 20th century, Global Change Biology, 19, 241-251. doi:10.1111/gcb.12026.
  • Hudiburg, T. W., P. E. Higuera, and J. A. Hicke (2017), Fire-regime variability impacts forest carbon dynamics for centuries to millennia, Biogeosciences, 14, 3873-3882, https://doi.org/10.5194/bg-14-38732017.
  • Iverson, L. R., A. M. Prasad, S. N. Matthews, and M. Peters (2008), Estimating potential habitat for 134 eastern US tree species under six climate scenarios, Forest Ecology and Management, 254, 390-406.
  • Rehfeldt, G. E., N. L. Crookston, M. V. Warwell, and J. S. Evans (2006), Empirical analyses of plant-climate relationships for the western United States, International Journal of Plant Sciences, 167, 1123-1150.
FIRE ADAPTATION AND RISK ASSESSMENT
  • Calkin, D. E., J. D. Cohen, M. A. Finney, and M. P. Thompson (2014), How risk management can prevent future wildfire disasters in the wildland-urban interface, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 111(2), 746-751.
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
×
  • Calkin, D. E., M. P. Thompson, and M. A. Finney (2015), Negative consequences of positive feedbacks in US wildfire management, Forest Ecosystems, 2(1), 1-10.
  • Chang, T., A. J. Hansen, and N. Piekielek (2014), Patterns and variability of projected bioclimatic habitat for Pinus albicaulis in the Greater Yellowstone area, PLoS One, doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0111669.
  • Chapin, F. S., S. F. Trainor, O. Huntington, A. L. Lovecraft, E. Zavaleta, D. C. Natcher, A. D. McGuire, J. L. Nelson, L. Ray, M. Calef, N. Fresco, H. Huntington, T. S. Rupp, L. Dewilde, and R. L. Naylor (2008), Increasing wildfire in Alaska’s boreal forest: Pathways to potential solutions of a wicked problem, Bioscience, 58(6), 531. (Alaskan forests are not considered in chapter)
  • Flatley, W. T., and P. Z. Fulé (2016), Are historical fire regimes compatible with future climate? Implications for forest restoration, Ecosphere, 7(10), e01471.
  • Harvey, B. J., D. C. Donato, and M. G. Turner (2016), High and dry: Post-fire tree seedling establishment in subalpine forests decreases with post-fire drought and large stand-replacing burn patches, Global Ecology and Biogeography, 25(6), 655-669.
  • Headwaters Economics (2016), Land Use Planning to Reduce Wildfire Risk: Lessons from Five Western Cities. Available at: headwaterseconomics.org/wphw/wpcontent/uploads/Planning_Lessons_Full_Report_Web.pdf
  • Hessburg, P. F., D. J. Churchill, A. J. Larson, R. D. Haugo, C. Miller, T. A. Spies, M. P. North, N. A. Povak, R. T. Belote, P. H. Singleton, W. L. Gaines, R. E. Keane, G. H. Aplet, S. L. Stephens, P. Morgan, P. A. Bisson, B. E. Rieman, R. B. Salter, and G. H. Reeves (2015), Restoring fire-prone Inland Pacific landscapes: Seven core principles, Landscape Ecology, 30(10), 1805-1835.
  • Hessburg, P. F., T. A. Spies, D. A. Perry, C. N. Skinner, A. H. Taylor, P. M. Brown, S. L. Stephens, A. J. Larson, D. J. Churchill, N. A. Povak, P. H. Singleton, B. McComb, W. J. Zielinski, B. M. Collins, R. B. Salter, J. J. Keane, J. F. Franklin, and G. Riegel (2016), Tamm Review: Management of mixed-severity fire regime forests in Oregon, Washington, and Northern California, Forest Ecology and Management, 366, 221-250.
  • Hobbs, R. J., E. Higgs, C. M. Hall, P. Bridgewater, F. S. Chapin, E. C. Ellis, J. J. Ewel, L. M. Hallett, J. Harris, K. B. Hulvey, S. T. Jackson, P. L. Kennedy, C. Kueffer, L. Lach, T. C. Lantz, A. E. Lugo, J. Mascaro, S. D. Murphy, C. R. Nelson, M. P. Perring, D. M. Richardson, T. R. Seastedt, R. J. Standish, B. M. Starzomski, K. N. Suding, P. M. Tognetti, L. Yakob, and L. Yung (2014), Managing the whole landscape: Historical, hybrid, and novel ecosystems, Frontiers in Ecology and Environment, 12(10), 557-564.
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
×
  • NRAP (2017), Northern Rockies Adaptation Partnership: Vulnerability Assessment Summaries. Available at http://adaptationpartners.org/nrap/docs/NRAP_vulnerability_assessment.pdf, accessed April 25, 2018.
  • Iverson, L. R., A. M. Prasad, S. N. Matthews, and M. Peters (2008), Estimating potential habitat for 134 eastern US tree species under six climate scenarios, Forest Ecology and Management, 254, 390-406.
  • Moritz, M. A., E. Batllori, R. A. Bradstock, A. M. Gill, J. Handmer, P. F. Hessburg, J. Leonard, S. McCaffrey, D. C. Odion, T. Schoennagel, and A. D. Syphard (2014), Learning to coexist with wildfire, Nature, 515(7525), 58-66.
  • Rasker, R. (2015), Resolving the increasing risk from wildfires in the American West, Solutions, 6(2), 55-62.
  • Schoennagel, T., J. K. Balch, H. Brenkert-Smith, P. E. Dennison, B. J. Harvey, M. A. Krawchuk, N. Mietkiewicz, P. Morgan, M. A. Moritz, R. Rasker, M. G. Turner, and C. Whitlock (2017), Adapt to more wildfire in western North American forests as climate changes, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, doi:10.1073/pnas.1617464114.
  • Thompson, M. P., P. Bowden, A. Brough, J. H. Scott, J. GilbertsonDay, A. Taylor, J. Anderson, and J. R. Haas (2016), Application of wildfire risk assessment results to wildfire response planning in the southern Sierra Nevada, California, USA, Forests, 7(3), 64-86.
PALEOECOLOGY
  • Cook, E. R., R. Seager, M. A. Cane, and D. W. Stahle (2007), North American drought: reconstructions, causes, and consequences, Earth-Science Reviews, 81, 93-134.
  • Gavin, D. G., and L.B. Brubaker (2014), Late Pleistocene and Holocene environmental change on the Olympic Peninsula, Washington, Springer Verlag, Dordrecht.
  • Heyerdahl, E. K., P. Morgan, and J. P. Riser (2008), Multi-season climate synchronized historical fires in dry forests (1650-1900), Northern Rockies, USA. Ecology, 89(3), 705-716.
  • Higuera, P. E., C. E. Briles, and C. Whitlock (2014), Fire-regime complacency and sensitivity to centennial- through millennial-scale climate change in Rocky Mountain subalpine forests, Colorado, U.S.A., Journal of Ecology, 102, 1429-1441.
  • Jackson, S. T., J. L. Betancourt, R. K. Booth, and S. T. Gray (2009), Ecology and the ratchet of events: climate variability, niche dimensions, and species distributions, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 106(2), 19,685-19,692.
  • Marlon, J. R., P. J. Bartlein, D. G. Gavin, C. J. Long, R. S. Anderson, C. E. Briles, K. J. Brown, D. Colombaroli, D. J. Hallett, M. J. Power, E. A. Scharf, and M. K. Walsh (2012), Long-term perspective on wildfires in the Western USA, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 109, E535-E543.
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
×
  • Mclauchlan, K. K., P. E. Higuera, D. G. Gavin, S. S. Perakis, M. C. Mack, H. Alexander, J. Battles, F. Biondi, B. Buma, D. Colombaroli, S. K. Enders, D. R. Engstrom, F. S. Hu, J. R. Marlon, J. Marshall, M. Mcglone, J. L. Morris, L. E. Nave, B. Shuman, E. A. H. Smithwick, D. H. Urrego, D. A. Wardle, C. J. Williams, and J. J. Williams (2014), Reconstructing disturbances and their biogeochemical consequences over multiple timescales, Bioscience, 64, 105-116.
  • Odion, D. C., C. T. Hanson, A. Arsenault, W. L. Baker, D. A. DellaSala, R. L. Hutto, W. Klenner, M. A. Moritz, R. L. Sherriff, T. T. Veblen, and M. A. Williams (2014), Examining historical and current mixed-conifer forests of western North America, PLoS ONE, 9(2), e87852, doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0087852.
  • Pederson, N., J. M. Dyer, R. W. McEwan, A. E. Hessl, C. J. Mock, D. A. Orwig, H. E. Rieder, and B. I. Cook (2014), The legacy of episodic climatic events in shaping temperate, broadleaf forests. Ecological Monographs, 84(4), 599-620 doi:10.1890/13-1025.1.
  • Shuman, B., A. K. Henderson, C. Plank, I. Stefanova, and S. S. Ziegler (2009), Woodland-to-forest transition during prolonged drought in Minnesota after ca. AD 1300, Ecology, 90(10), 2792-2807.
  • Swetnam, T. W., and J. L. Betancourt (1998), Mesoscale disturbance and ecological response to decadal climatic variability in the American Southwest, Journal of Climate, 11, 3128-3147.
  • Whitlock, C., P. E. Higuera, D. B. McWethy, and C. E. Briles (2010), Paleoecological perspectives on fire ecology: revisiting the fire-regime concept, The Open Ecology Journal, 3, 6-23.
  • Whitlock, C. (1992), Vegetational and climatic history of the Pacific Northwest during the last 20,000 years: implications for understanding present-day biodiversity, The Northwest Environmental Journal, 8, 5-28, 1992.

7: ECOSYSTEMS, ECOSYSTEM SERVICES, AND BIODIVERSITY

# Page/Line Comment
109 P257/L14 Insert “-” (revised text would say “large marine-ecosystem scales”).
110 P257/L2125 Not all of the topics listed here are discussed in the chapters in the context of the many people, communities, and economies that depend on the services.
111 P259/L4 Delete “_”
112 P259/L5 The clause “, which include” has an unclear reference. If this is a definition of ecosystems, it should be clearly called out.
113 P259/L6 Ecosystem services should be clearly defined.
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
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# Page/Line Comment
114 P259/L9 The United States is sometimes abbreviated as U.S. and elsewhere it is spelled out. This should be discussed consistently across the chapter (and report).
115 P259/L14 Insert “in the future” after “change” so that the text reads, “change in the future still.”
116 P259/L2131 By focusing on the “state” of biodiversity and ecosystems, the NCA4 authors place a singular focus on impacts on species, communities, etc. There is virtually no mention of what ecosystem services are likely to be affected, as flows from “stock” (biodiversity and natural ecosystem components) to people, which is the definition of ecosystem services.
117 P259/L24 The word “phenology” should be moved to come after “migration.”
118 P259/L2939 “This” is an unclear reference.
119 P259/L3031 Insert “or past response” so that the text reads, “modeling its individual components or past response.”
120 P259/L34 Provide a specific example of a shift in phenology and population performance.
121 P259/L35-P260/L1 The cited Cleland et al. 2012, Willis et al. 2010, Chuine 2010, Zimova et al. 2017, are not in the reference list and are inconsistently formatted with other references in the chapter.
122 P260/L6 The word “or” should be replaced by “and/or.”
123 P260/L7-9 Insert a time span of observation for these statements about range changes and provide some specific examples.
124 P260/L1012 Range shifts are different among terrestrial species as well, so it is not clear what in this statement is unique to marine plankton.
125 P260/L1516 This assertion that species will move north and up is too simplistic. Several studies in the western U.S., for example, show complex range changes that best track changes in effective moisture.
126 P260/L7-8 Over what time have communities shifted ranges? This observation is not helpful without more information about the community, the time span of observation, or the location.
127 P260/L18 This is unclear: “species’ responses” to what? Is this a reference to their range changes?
128 P260/L20 Define “other stressors” or remove this phrase if it is covered in the list already.
129 P260/L21 It is unclear what is meant by “topography and the interaction of different climate aspects.”
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
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# Page/Line Comment
130 P260/L2829 The text needs a time span for “increasing rate of introduction of nonnative species globally.”
131 P260/L30 This is unclear: “costs” of what?
132 P260/L32 Define “novel communities.”
133 P260/L3233 The references provided in support of this point are inappropriate. A specific example is also needed.
134 P261/L2 Do the authors mean to say “native species” instead of “existing nonnative species”? This should be clarified.
135 P261/L10 Suggest replacing “manifested through” with “as evidenced by.”
136 P261/L1112 The list is not parallel. It is suggested that “the ecosystem services they support” be replaced with “ecosystem services.”
137 P261/L12 Instead of stating, “Nationally” it is suggested that “Across the U.S.” be used.
138 P261/L12 This is unclear: “starting earlier” than when?
139 P261/L1516 It is unclear what the temporal baseline for this observation is. This should be explained.
140 P261/L2123 Provide an example to support this sentence.
141 P261/L28 Replace “predators” with “consumers.”
142 P261/L35 Replace “are able” with “will” in both places.
143 P262/L5-8 Rewrite “stressors increase stress.” Explain how a human-caused stressor “decreases the overall gene pool.” Provide an example.
144 P262/L6 It is unclear what is meant by “natural systems.”
145 P262/L1316 Provide a specific example for some of these groups.
146 P262/L1619 Provide an example of an evolutionary change in response to climate change.
147 P262/L2024 These two sentences seem contradictory. Evolution will not counteract the negative effects of climate change and evolution will have negative effects. This point needs clarification (and an example).
148 P262/L34 Delete “(.”
149 P262/L3738 It is unclear what “other factors” are. Please specify.
150 P263/L5 Replace “, which has” with “, and this change.”
151 P263/L5 Hyphenate “mid-latitude.”
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
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# Page/Line Comment
152 P263/L6-7 This sentence about mixed evidence is cryptic without more information. Also note the time span for decreased productivity (last century).
153 P263/L12 Define the timeframe for “recent observations.”
154 P263/L1315 For clarity, explain the link between increased productivity and changes in fisheries catch.
155 P263/L2024 This statement needs an example. Higher energetic needs would be a direct result of warmer temperatures, drought, and extreme events. This should be factored into this sentence, which focuses only on biotic interactions. Also define “resource mismatches.”
156 P263/L2427 This statement would benefit from an example.
157 P263/L38 This last sentence in this paragraph is cryptic. What are the debates? It would be good to cite Barnosky et al. 2017 here.

Barnosky, A. D., et al. (2017), Merging paleobiology with conservation biology to guide the future of terrestrial ecosystems, Science, 355(6325), doi:10.1126/science.aah4787.
158 P264/L5-37 The template is not followed for the Regional Roll-Up and the second paragraph is a mish mash of unrelated topics. Some of the statements are questionable (e.g., attributing salmonid declines to climate change versus bears). It is suggested that reference be made to information provided in particular regional chapters. For instance, Tolan and Fisher, 2009 is cited in the draft NCA4 Chapter 23.
159 P264/L26 Endangered fisheries are the result of land use change as much as climate change.
160 P265/L22 Give an example to support this statement about shifts in phenology.
161 P265/L2937 This paragraph refers to climate change impacts on ecosystem services, but the information is too general to be evaluated. Some specificity and examples would help.
162 P266/L6-12 The treatment of U.S. federal agency policies/actions is vague. Provide specific example(s) to make it real for the reader.
163 P266/L8 Insert “,” so that revised text would say “food conditions, they.”
164 P266/L2338 References on climate resilience should be included here.
165 P266/L31 Fix the citation: “Service 2013.”
166 P266/L32 The authors should review and consider citing the guidance document Stein et al., 2014.

Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
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# Page/Line Comment
Stein, B.A., P. Glick, N. Edelson, and A. Staudt (eds.). 2014. Climate-Smart Conservation: Putting Adaptation Principles into Practice. National Wildlife Federation, Washington, DC.
167 P266/L36 Define “holistic ecosystem-based approaches.”
168 P267/L4-5 It is unclear what is meant by “mitigate the harmful impacts of current and future resource management challenges.”
169 P267/L5 The word “agencies” should be in lower case.
170 P268/L1-2 Cite references for the statement regarding range shift consequences.
171 P268/L28 Insert time span to support “species respond to climate change.”
172 P268/L32 Insert time span for “experienced range shifts.”
173 P268/L3235 Define climate velocity. Also cite Dobrowski and Parks, 2016, for discussion of climate change velocity/exposure in mountainous areas.

Dobrowski, S. Z., and S. A. Parks (2016), Climate change velocity underestimates climate change exposure in mountainous regions, Nature Communications, 7, 12349, doi:10.1038/ncomms12349. https://www.nature.com/articles/ncomms12349#supplementaryinformation.
174 P268/L34 Explain why text says “can be greater,” rather than “is.”
175 P269/L1-2 The first sentence needs some specific case studies for this to make sense. Provide some direct links to climate change and references to specific documents.
176 P269/L3 Explain why timber production will shift as a result of climate change.
177 P269/L5-6 Define “tragedy of the commons,” which will likely be unfamiliar to a general audience.
178 P269/L7-9 This statement would benefit from an example and reference to regional chapters that discuss Indigenous issues.
179 P269/L8 Delete “both.”
180 P269/L8-10 More citations should be provided to support this sentence. There are more recent papers than Graves, 2008 and ones that cover full breadth of statement.
181 P269/L15 Provide an example of “climate-induced phenological change” to support this sentence.
182 P269/L2024 This interesting observation about migratory birds needs a time span for the data.
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
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# Page/Line Comment
183 P269/L2425 It is unclear what is meant by “sufficiently advance migratory phenology.”
184 P269/L30 Provide an example of altered pollinator-prey relationships.
185 P269/L35 It is unclear what a “climatological expectation” is and what the time frame for this observation is.
186 P270/L4 Define “standing genetic diversity.”
187 P270/L5 This is unclear: “more gradual” than what?
188 P270/L6-9 This observation suffers by the lack of specific examples. How is adaptation to climate change identified?
189 P270/L10 Replace “other non climate-related stressors” with “non-climatic stressors” and define this term.
190 P270/L11 Replace “predictions” with “projections.” Specify the critical climate variables (see draft NCA4 Chapter 2).
191 P270/L20 Define “communities.” In this case, does this refer to human communities?
192 P270/L21 Replace “communities” with “economies.”
193 P270/L22 Explain: “economically vulnerable to what,” and how does this limit their response?
194 P270/L23 Provide an example of an invasive species that is having an economic impact in the face of climate change.
195 P270/L2527 The two economic statistics are nonparallel, so it is difficult to compare them.
196 P270/L2837 This section would benefit from a case study under the key message.
197 P270/L28 Insert “-” (revised text would say “land-use change”).
198 P270/L29 Insert “ecological” so that revised text states “ecological communities.”
199 P270/L32 It is unclear what is meant by “behavioral mechanisms.”
200 P270/L33 It is unclear what is meant by “specific traits.”
201 P271/L3 Clarify: “major outbreaks” of what?
202 P271/L5-7 It would be useful to provide an example of how novel species are making the noted changes.
203 P271/L9 This sentence seems out of place.
204 P271/L1323 These two sentences make no sense and do not follow each other.
205 P271/L24 Explain “advanced modeling techniques.”
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
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# Page/Line Comment
206 P271/L28 Monitoring should be included as a shortcoming and critical need.
207 P271/L29 It is unclear what “under” means.
208 P271/L36 Insert space between “variation” and “(Jeong.”
209 P272/L3 It is unclear why there is a long list of citations here.
210 P272/L5 What is the demonstrated “uniquity of local adaptation” that is referred to? This is important and more detail should be provided.
211 P272/L8 What is the year of the publication?
212 P272/L8 Explain the two case studies.
213 P272/L10 For the phrase, “involved changes in the timing of migration,” what time period is being discussed?
214 P272/L13 The use of the term “novel” is used differently here than the rest of the text-here it refers to invaded areas. The term should be used consistently, or clearly defined when used differently.
215 P272/L13 Provide an example of how available methods have been used to estimate risk.
216 P272/L14 What are the emerging technologies noted here?
217 P272/L17 Define “novel sectors and livelihoods.”
218 P272/L21 Provide an example of how novel ecosystem transitions may result. The paleoecological literature might be helpful in this regard.
219 P272/L28 It is unclear how the references are related to the sentence.
220 P272/L36 This text repeats line 20-24 but with different references.
221 P273/L18 There are no case studies to demonstrate how well natural resource management and adaptation strategies are working now or need to be refined in order to work better.
222 P273/L2728 Define “seed sourcing” and “assisted migration” for a general audience.
223 P273/L3132 No case studies are provided in the text to support this statement.
224 P273/L3235 The statement would be strengthened with some examples.
225 P274/L3 Vermont grassland systems are human-created landscapes. What is their value for biodiversity or conservation? Describe the likely phenological shifts related to climate change.
226 P274/L5 Replace “has” with “have.”
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
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# Page/Line Comment
227 P274/L1517 This reference to resistance/resilience is not well discussed in the key message section and should be clarified. How is resistance/resilience with respect to climate change defined and what are the compromises posed by invasive species?
228 P274/L2023 This long list of citation needs some examples in order for the reader to understand the state of uncertainty and the potential for large changes in this regard.
229 P274/L25 What is the reference to “recent” here? Some of the citations go back to before the NCA3, so they are not new in relation to the development of this draft fourth assessment.
230 P274/L35 Plans for state and public-private partnerships should be discussed.
231 P275/L14 It is unclear why is the word “could” is used here.

9: OCEANS AND MARINE RESOURCES

# Page/Line Comment
232 P332/L1920 A reference and some elaboration is needed on the statement that ocean acidification or low oxygen events can lead to technological adaptation.
233 P334/L5 The population and percentage value listed differ slightly from that provided in the draft NCA4 Chapter 8. The chapters should report the information using the same values for consistency.
234 P334/L2537 Why are no new references on ocean acidification since the NCA3 cited? The discussion is basic information, rather than new data on the status or trends.
235 P335/L7-10 A reference is needed for the “dead zone” in the Gulf of Mexico.
236 P336/L4 Burrows et al. 2014 would also be an appropriate reference to include here.

Burrows, M. T., et al. (2014), Geographical limits to species-range shifts are suggested by climate velocity, Nature, 507(7493), 492-495, doi:10.1038/nature12976.

10: AGRICULTURE AND RURAL COMMUNITIES

# Page/Line Comment
237 P373/L27-P375/L5 Adaptation through land-use change is acknowledged as an option (page 375, line 5), but not addressed with any specific examples. Consider
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
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# Page/Line Comment
including one or more of the following instances where more detail or examples could be helpful: (1) page 375, where the need for adaptation in the long run should be more strongly stated (Pugh et al., 2016), (2) page 373, line 27 and page 374, line 1, the amount of cropland in 2012 was down substantially from the 1950s (Brown et al., 2005) in response to change markets, technology, and policy. Less productive areas that have been abandoned could be brought back into production as an adaptation measure, though new ownership and land-use/livelihood patterns may reduce the capacity for reversion to agriculture as patterns of productivity change. Loss of cropland to urbanization, for example, limits reversion to cropland. (3) Paragraph beginning on page 375, line 16, paragraph addresses adaptation by a variety of means, but not by land-use change. Retirement of agricultural land or conversion to pasture at the productivity margins is a form of adaptation that has been happening over centuries. As noted above, it may be the key form of adaptation necessary in the long run. This will have significant effects on rural communities (both those where cropping declines and those where it increases). Evidence from econometric studies could be included, such as Burke and Emerick (2016), Feng et al. (2015), and Burke and Emerick (2016) (cited in draft chapter). (4) Address bioenergy and bioenergy with carbon capture as mitigation options and the additional interconnected stresses a massive scale up in bioenergy for mitigation would likely cause. See new citations at the end of the line comments for this chapter.
238 P373/L1216 Remove “Food service, eating and drinking places,” “Food and beverage stores,” and “Textile, apparel, and leather manufacturing” from Figure 10.1. Their magnitude and distant relevance to the chapter (i.e., these are largely urban enterprises) distract from the message.
239 P374/L6-11 It is true and well-documented that agriculture has become more efficient over the last few decades. However, consider following up the statement about reducing agricultural and environmental footprint with a comment about some of the remaining major environmental footprint issues to be addressed (e.g., eutrophication in Great Lakes and the Gulf of Mexico).
240 P375/L16-P376/L9 The comment about the effectiveness of existing adaptation strategies given continued productivity growth does not consider the possibility that growth could have been much faster with even better adaptation. Given the concurrent trends of continuous equipment/genetic improvements, which were not designed as climate mitigation strategies, it is probably not safe to assume from the last couple of decades of increasing productivity that the sector is particularly skilled at climate change adaptation already.
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
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# Page/Line Comment
241 P375L13-15 Challenges to food security should acknowledge changing diets along with population growth as drivers of this challenge.
242 P376/L6-9 Research needs are referenced here, but few other places in the chapter. It would be highly valuable to comment more systematically on views of what the key research challenges are (related to this chapter’s scope) in the next few years, as appropriate for inclusion in this draft report.
243 P376/L35-P377/L5 Mention of increasing irrigation as possible adaptation should reference observed increases, while also acknowledging the importance of water resource limitations in the future, as the text does. Data from Brown et al. 2014 could give a sense of scale. Also, acknowledge the regional variability of resource limitations (some basins are in much better or worse shape than others).
244 P377/L27-P378/L7 Consider adding a comment on yield quality in addition to quantity, e.g., nutritional quality of crops under climate change scenarios. This may qualify as an emerging topic to watch. The draft NCA4 Chapter 23 cites Myers et al. 2017 on this.
245 P377/L2931 “The demand for higher crop productivity under climate change has contributed to advancements in crop genetics in recent years.” Do the provided references support this? Robust crop breeding programs certainly are a mechanism for continually adjusting crop genetics to recent weather conditions and thereby ought to help agriculture progressively adjust to some types of climate change. In some cases, breeding programs have more directly targeted traits that help with drought resilience, etc., as noted in the text. But that is different than climate change adaptation being a direct motivator of recent crop genetic advancements.
246 P377/L1-5 This statement is probably true without climate change also-recharge is not keeping up with withdrawals in a lot of places. Climate change might accelerate this, but the chapter needs to recognize the baseline.
247 P378/L20-P379/L6 There may be somewhat of an overemphasis of the chapter text on irrigation as measured by the amount of text in the chapter devoted to this relative to U.S. acreage percentage using irrigation. Maybe it is an appropriate ratio based on economic importance? If so, the authors could state the outsized economic importance of irrigated acres. Either way, it is not clear that it is appropriate to have the sole case study box in this section to be about groundwater-fed irrigation of High Plains row crops.
248 P378/L20-P379/L6 “[T]he Ogallala aquifer is a nonrenewable resource.” This requires more qualification, as there is a major difference in conditions from north to south across the aquifer. Groundwater recharge rates in the northern portion are quite high and approximately capable of sustaining current
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
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# Page/Line Comment
irrigation rates (although river flows have suffered). As recent supporting evidence, groundwater levels in Nebraska recovered well following the record drawdowns during the 2012 drought year. In contrast, the central and southern portions have low recharge and should mostly be considered non-renewable resources.
249 P378/L8-9 Define “climate-smart agriculture” and reference the origin of this term.
250 P381/L3338 Clarification is needed in the statement about migration of the feeding industry. Is the expectation that industry in the southern Great Plains and Atlantic coastal plain will contract towards the northern Great Plains and upper midwest? Is there a reference describing the current trend?
251 P381/L25 “Similar arguments” is too vague of a reference. To what arguments does it refer?
252 P382/L2139 The nutrient loss pathway discussion focuses on erosion, but leaching (with or without tile drains) is another major loss pathway. The word leaching does not appear in the chapter. Relatedly, the combination of warmer springtime soils and increased rainfall intensity would seem to have the potential to increase nitrogen leaching under U.S. row crops, potentially reversing a trend of increasing nitrogen use efficiency over time in the sector. The cited Rosenzweig et al. 2014 paper mentions nitrogen losses as potentially exacerbating yield reductions. Pesticide leaching is also a risk. Consider adding comments on these mechanisms. A related point is that agronomic management practice shifts that are designed to mitigate climate impacts could also unintentionally exacerbate downstream impacts, for example, adding more fertilizers to insure against the yield losses described by the Rosenzweig et al. 2014 citation included in the draft NCA4, could potentially add to waterway discharges if they are not coupled with precision application technologies or similar.
253 P383/L5 “[S]uch declarations” are not defined. A reference is provided in the traceable accounts (see the reference to “billion dollar natural disasters” on page 390, line 1), but it is unclear if they are referring to the same thing. More explanation is needed.
254 P383/L4-8 This paragraph seems out of scope since it is not focusing on agricultural and rural communities.
255 P384/L23 This is confusing wording. Change to “are less likely to exist and more loosely enforced.”
256 P385/L38 “TPF” should be “TFP.”
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
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# Page/Line Comment
257 P386/L8-14 Is the moisture/fire relationship for the period 1600-1800 safely applicable to the 2000s given all of the land use and land cover differences?
258 P386/L8-14 Evidence for the fire prevalence impact on agriculture and how economically impactful it is should be added.
259 P386/L8-14 The cited Margolis et al. 2017 is locally focused on northern New Mexico. Additional references to support the statement more broadly would be beneficial.
260 P386/L16 Dai and Zhao 2017 may have found positive trends in drought indices (not negative, as stated). It is suggested that the authors revisit this literature and confirm/correct.
261 P387/L27-P388/L14 Consider separating and making explicit the main types of research evidence about climate change impacts on crops. For example, (1) observational field studies, (2) experimental field studies, and (3) modeling studies. Also consider citing by name an example from each, such as the cited Hatfield et al. 2017 and several Lobell studies for (1), free air carbon dioxide experiment (FACE) studies for (2), and the Agricultural Model Intercomparison and Improvement Project (AGMIP) for (3).
262 P390/L7-13 This section justifies comments on mitigation capabilities but not on the impacts themselves.
263 P402/L7-10 This reference is used four times in the chapter and is a link to a nontechnical overview. Reference to the full work should be included.
Suggested References
  • Brown, Daniel G., et al. “Rural land‐use trends in the conterminous United States, 1950–2000.” Ecological Applications 15.6 (2005): 1851-1863.
  • Brown, J. F., & Pervez, M. S. (2014). Merging remote sensing data and national agricultural statistics to model change in irrigated agriculture. Agricultural Systems 127, 28-40.
  • Burke, Marshall, and Kyle Emerick. “Adaptation to climate change: Evidence from US agriculture.” American Economic Journal: Economic Policy 8.3 (2016): 106-140
  • Feng, Shuaizhang, Michael Oppenheimer, and Wolfram Schlenker. 2015. “Weather Anomalies, Crop Yields, and Migration in the US Corn Belt.” http://www.columbia.edu/~ws2162/articles/FengOppenheimerSchlenker.pdf.
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
×
  • Jin, Zhenong, et al. “Increasing drought and diminishing benefits of elevated carbon dioxide for soybean yields across the US Midwest.” Global change biology (2017).
  • Lobell, David B., et al. “Greater sensitivity to drought accompanies maize yield increase in the US Midwest.” Science 344.6183 (2014): 516-519.
  • Myers, S.S., et al., Climate Change and Global Food Systems: Potential Impacts on Food Security and Undernutrition. Annu Rev Public Health, 2017. 38: p. 259-277.
  • Porter, J. R., Xie, L., Challinor, A. J., Cochrane, K., Howden, S. M., Iqbal, M. M., ... Travasso, M. I. (2014). Food security and food production systems. In Climate Change 2014: Impacts, Adaptation, and Vulnerability (pp. 485-533). Cambridge University Press. http://curis.ku.dk/ws/files/131829514/Chapter_7._Food_security....pdf.
  • Pugh, T. A. M., et al. “Climate analogues suggest limited potential for intensification of production on current croplands under climate change.” Nature Communications 7 (2016): 12608.
  • Urban, Daniel W., Justin Sheffield, and David B. Lobell. “The impacts of future climate and carbon dioxide changes on the average and variability of US maize yields under two emission scenarios.” Environmental Research Letters 10.4 (2015): 045003.
  • Wang, Zhaozhi, et al. “Modeling the impacts of climate change on nitrogen losses and crop yield in a subsurface drained field.” Climatic Change 129.1-2 (2015): 323-335.

12: TRANSPORTATION

# Page/Line Comment
264 P451/L1 It would be more appropriate to say that transportation is “A” not “THE” backbone, along with communications and energy.
265 P451/L19 The transportation system is “INTERdependent with” other systems, not just dependent on.
266 P452/L5 The notion of “a new transportation paradigm” is raised, but is not defined. Do these new approaches (transit-oriented development (TOD), autonomous vehicles, and shared mobility) actually constitute a new paradigm?
267 P452/L34 The NCA4 authors should check on whether the state of the science indicates that there is too much uncertainty in forecasts about the levels of the Great Lakes to say that lower levels WILL limit boat traffic.
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
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# Page/Line Comment
268 P456/L1-3 This is a theoretical statement about heat impacts. This is a well-known process to be sure, but it would be strengthened with empirical observations of the effect.
269 P460/L9 Examples of resiliency measures that have or could be taken should be provided. This is not obvious from the text.
270 P468/L28 “[C]omprise” should be “compromise.”
271 P468/L37 It would be useful to relate the physical effect of buckling at >90 degrees to the number of projects days under the scenarios.
272 P470/L1115 Empirical and modeling evidence seems to be slim for this “high confidence.” Presumably, high confidence could be based on engineering studies, but it would be stronger with observations and models.
273 P470/L32 This statement about low-income people being less likely to evacuate comes from another assessment report. The primary evidence should be provided.
274 P471/L1 The meaning of “broad constituencies in suburban areas” is vague and requires clarification.
275 P471/L9-10 Why give examples of Colorado and Iowa? In what way are they representative?

15: TRIBAL AND INDIGENOUS COMMUNITIES

# Page/Line Comment
276 P548/L2633 The introduction in general, and this paragraph in particular, would benefit from references to support these statements. If this initial section is intended as an overview summary rather than an introduction, a heading should be added to indicate this. It is an opportunity to inform the general readership of the NCA4 about publications that document the important points raised in the introduction. For example, literature that documents increased rates of mood and anxiety disorders is needed. This statement is repeated in the “results” (draft NCA4 page 555, lines 32-34). Do the NCA4 authors intend this to be a finding of the assessment (in which case, page 555 and the associated key message is a good place to present it) or as background (in which case, the introduction would be the better place)? More general statements have been well documented in the literature, which should be cited in the introduction.
277 P548/L3437 See previous comment #274. Additional references that would allow readers to further explore the content of this paragraph are needed.
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
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# Page/Line Comment
278 P552/L3-7 Key Message 1 is important. However, with a superficial reading, it would seem to apply to non-tribal as well as tribal entities. The logic would be more compelling if the chapter explained why these vulnerabilities are often greater for tribal than for non-tribal entities. Text that references Figure 15.2 might be an appropriate place to make these explanations. Box 15.1 does a good job of providing these types of explanations with respect to social determinants of indigenous health.
279 P555/L6 Replace “that can that” with “that can.”
280 P555/L38-P556/L3 This section needs citations and more thorough explanation.
281 P556/L4-11 This paragraph does a good job of providing citations for each key statement.
282 P558/L2-7 This is an excellent example of the types of statistics that are valuable to present in the report.
283 P559/L5-7 The NCA4 authors should be a bit more explicit about these issues. It seems like an important point, but it is so general that it does not provide a lot of insight. Is this because the governance issues are so heterogeneous from place to place that one cannot generalize, i.e., that greater future assessment will be necessary to make progress, or is it that the authors chose not to provide the details?
284 P547-563 General comment: The chapter is clearly written and addresses the important climate change impacts on indigenous peoples in a rigorous fashion. In some instances, the same points are made in the introduction and results, making it unclear which aspects are part of this assessment and which are general background. The inclination is to suggest general background papers be cited in the introduction and that the results focus on evaluation of papers that bring new information to this assessment. See also comment #274.
285 P550/L7 The term “federally recognized Tribes” appears without definition or characterization of important distinctions regarding legal/policy standing and political relationships with other groups of indigenous peoples, non-federally recognized tribes, state recognized tribes, and other groups of self-recognized peoples. It is recommended that the term be defined.
286 P550/L9 This characterization of the trust responsibility is misleading. The trust responsibility has two major components: (1) fiduciary obligations of the U.S. as trustee for the management of the Indian estate, the funds and resources entrusted to its care; and (2) the duty to support tribal self-determination and role in the American system of governance. What is described as “trust responsibility” is in fact a policy recognition that federally recognized tribes are political sovereigns that are to be
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
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# Page/Line Comment
treated in accordance with protocols appropriate for government-to-government relations. There are several statutes and policies that describe responsibilities for interacting with tribal governments, including consultation on matters that affect their rights and interests.
287 P550/L1522 Consider relocating this paragraph to the start of the Executive Summary.
288 P551/L1314 Figure 15.1 does not reflect “models of adaptation,” but rather indicates locations of tribal involvement in climate change initiatives.
289 P551/Figure 15.1 Adaptation is not well covered in the web links provided in this figure. The first web link simply refers back to this draft NCA4 chapter; the second and third web links describe climate impacts but say relatively little about ongoing adaptation activities.
290 P551/L16 The word “cumulatively” should be “collectively.”
291 P551/L1920 It is recommended that the last sentence be deleted because it serves little substantive purpose. Although islands are depicted in Figure 15.1, the chapter text does not substantively discuss many of the unique issues faced by indigenous peoples in these locations.
292 P552/L15 Change “comprise” to “contain.”
293 P552/L15 The validity of this statement is questioned here. No source for this statistic is presented. Most tribal hatcheries do not produce fish that are not listed under the ESA.
294 P553/L7 Authors should consider citing Parsons et al. 2017.

Parsons, M., C. Brown, J. Nalau, and K. Fisher (2017), Assessing adaptive capacity and adaptation: insights from Samoan tourism operators, Climate and Development, 1-20, doi:10.1080/17565529.2017.1410082.
295 P553/L14 There are not just regulatory responses and impacts on arts and crafts income. Failure to enforce laws and regulations (e.g., clean air and water, energy efficiency), conflicting missions among fragmented agencies, and failure to allow for traditional uses and management practices, etc. all affect availability (access, abundance, and productivity) of many resources for food security, subsistence, medicines, and commercial and ceremonial use.
296 P553/L2330 The pervasive role of federal agencies and persistent remnants of paternalistic policies are embodied in the manuals, rules, and regulations. These policies and procedures that are relied upon to administer fiduciary trust responsibilities are major barriers to adaption and development of tribal resources/economies. See Energy Act, NIFRMA, Indian Ag Act, etc. Additionally, note persistent poverty,
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
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# Page/Line Comment
lack of infrastructure, and isolation (e.g., 14% lack access to electricity [Energy Information Administration], and only a small percentage have access to broadband Internet).
297 P555/L5 This discussion would benefit from references to environmental/climate justice to address disproportionate distribution of impacts to the economically disadvantaged and populations of color.
298 P555/L19 The word “undermine” should be changed to “alter.” These relationships are not limited to humans and animals, but to all aspects of the environment, plants, water, soils, air, etc.
299 P555/L2331 An aspect of climate change which is important, but not directly covered, involves scarcity of resources and competition, not just among indigenous peoples’ communities, but also as a result of recreational and commercial use of these resources by a growing population. Additionally, trespassing on tribal lands, environmental degradation, and some reserved rights to areas off reservation are also affected.
300 P556/L11 Impacts also accrue to traditions and practices, not just to sacred sites.
301 P556/L27 The discussion of adaptation is overly broad. Consideration should be given to the utility of distinguishing between different types of adaptation experienced by indigenous peoples. Certainly the ability to adapt to changing natural environments over millenia of pre-European contact, when indigenous communities were much more mobile within ancestral territories, differs markedly from the trauma of populations devastated by disease and forced adaptation to changes in natural and political environments resulting from the imposition of Western political, legal, and economic systems of property ownership, dispossession, relocation, and assimilation policies. These challenges differ markedly from those being faced today by indigenous peoples as they strive to contend with the necessity to deal with the pace and intensity of adaptation, preparation, and mitigation measures needed to respond to climate change. The ability of indigenous peoples to anticipate and respond to climate change is affected by economic, political, and legal considerations that severely constrain their abilities to consider and undertake alternative actions.
302 P556/L36 Revise text to say “multi-generational accumulation and transfer of knowledge.”
303 P557/L25 It is recommended that “within recognized areas where reserved hunting, fishing, gathering, and trapping rights can be exercised” be added.
304 P557/L25 A major impact that is not mentioned is reduced abundance and productivity due to environmental degradation and development that affect ecological processes.
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
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# Page/Line Comment
305 P557/L38 Should section 1110 of the Sandy Recovery Improvement Act or Stafford Act be referenced?
306 P558/L2 “President” should be capitalized.
307 P558/L2025 & P559/L1728 The relevance of forced relocation due to climate change should be clarified. Rather than “frameworks”—whatever those might be—three larger problems are apparent: (1) the difficulty of maintaining community/cultural continuity of place and environment for communities under relocation; (2) the lack of resources to support physical relocation, including aspects of governance—taxation, regulation, etc.; and (3) the impacts on the communities and environments receiving relocated communities.

21: MIDWEST

# Page/Line Comment
308 P844/L8-15 The chapter should address (at least major categories of) adaptation in the agricultural sector.
309 P850/L1 The impacts of transitions from an extreme drought year to an extreme flood year are mentioned, but no information is provided on whether this is expected in the future. Will there be more, fewer, the same, or is it unknown? If it is unknown, it seems unnecessary to mention the impact.
310 P851/L6-7 It would be useful to comment on increasing irrigation use in some parts of the region.
311 P857/L1515 Climate factors interact with one another and they interact with land use land cover patterns. This should be noted.
312 P863/L29-P864/L1 The implication is that decreasing lake levels can be expected. The evidence is not clear on this. Of course, if they do decrease, there will be increasing shipping costs. It would be more appropriate to say something about the science of whether or not we can expect them to decrease. Reduced ice cover is more clear.
313 P887/L1920 Provide references for the following claim: “It is clear, however, that flood frequency on major rivers in the Midwest has increased in recent decades.”
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
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22: NORTHERN GREAT PLAINS

# Page/Line Comment
314 P916/L15 “[G]eographical migration of agricultural practices” seems like jargon. Clarification on what exactly this means is needed.
315 P917/L12 The Northern Great Plains extends to Wyoming and Montana and significantly wetter conditions are not forecasted for the western parts of these states.
316 P919/L1-7 It would be helpful to show other basic climate projections for the region (seasonal/annual temperature, seasonal/annual precipitation projections).
317 P921/L2 These three geographic features should be shown on a map and there should be some identification beyond these features. The three features are also not clearly identified in the text (Red River Valley, Upper Missouri River Basin, and the third being the mountains of Wyoming and Montana?).
318 P921/L11 Define “alpine water dynamics.” Is this precipitation in headwater systems?
319 P921/L18 This is a very sparsely populated region.
320 P921/L1823 The NCA4 authors should mention dryland wheat production in Montana. The reference to arid to semiarid climate of this region requires some climate information.
321 P921/L21 Delete “.”
322 P921/L22 It is unclear what is meant by the “western portion of the region,” but it is managed for agriculture, forestry, grazing, and recreation.
323 P921/L35 Insert “-” such that revised text says “long-term.”
324 P922/L12 The statement that it is among the most arid in the Nation should be supported with some precipitation data and an identification of what area is referred to specifically.
325 P922/L24 Delete “a” so that text reads, “representing new and unprecedented.”
326 P922/L25 Is this a reference specifically to Glacier National Park?
327 P922/L35 Add Montana to the list.
328 P924/L11 In Figure 22.2, an explanation is needed for why Snow Water Equivalent for Average March is used instead of the usual April 1 Snow Water Equivalent.
329 P925/L5 Explain “high degree of variability.” Does this mean annual, seasonal, or spatial? Not only is the variability high, but the uncertainty is also high.
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
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# Page/Line Comment
330 P925/L8-9 Delete “in the future.”
331 P925/L15 These projections also apply to the northwestern portion (i.e., northern Montana).
332 P925/L17 Replace “which” with “and projected changes.”
333 P925/L19 In addition to agriculture and energy production, the list should be expanded to include human health, streamflow and temperatures, snow melt, fires, etc.
334 P925/L24 Nebraska has more humid-continental climate than where? Does this statement apply year-round or to seasonal climate conditions?
335 P925/L2526 Does this statement about reservoir and groundwater storage apply everywhere in the region or only in the eastern part?
336 P927/L7 It is unclear what is meant by “essential vegetation heterogeneity.”
337 P927/L19 A more detailed discussion of producer decision-making would be helpful, since climate change is only one factor. Refer to Whitlock et al. 2017 provided in the references at the end of this chapter review and the draft NCA4 Chapter 5 for a start.
338 P927/L28 Provide information about summer precipitation.
339 P927/L28 This paragraph should also cite the increase in extreme precipitation events. For example, a study of hail: Brimelow et al. 2017.

Brimelow, J. C., W. R. Burrows, and J. M. Hanesiak (2017), The changing hail threat over North America in response to anthropogenic climate change, Nature Climate Change, 7(7), 516-522, doi:10.1038/nclimate3321.
340 P927/L30 Insert “(.”
341 P927/L34-P928/L17 These projections do not apply to the entire Northern Great Plains region, which extends to western Montana. The authors need to be geographically specific. Item 1 should provide a season. Item 6 does not apply to the western region, where livestock will experience greater stress as a result of late-season drought and high temperatures.
342 P928/L29 Consider changing “would” to “will.”
343 P928/L30 Define “sustainability” in this case, or replace with “resilience.”
344 P929/L19 Explain the Collaborative Adaptive Rangeland Management experiment and how it relates to The Nature Conservancy’s Matador Ranch.
345 P929/L25 The phrase: “under each which were used” is awkward and should be reworded.
346 P930/L8 To clarify, $4.9 billion was spent in the Northern Great Plains states?
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
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# Page/Line Comment
347 P930/L28 More regional citations that should be reviewed/cited include:

Al-Chokhachy, R., D. Schmetterling, C. Clancy, P. Saffel, R. Kovach, L. Nyce, B. Liermann, W. Fredenberg, and R. Pierce (2016), Are brown trout replacing or displacing bull trout populations in a changing climate?, Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences, 73(9), 1395-1404, doi:10.1139/cjfas-2015-0293. Giersch, J. J., S. Hotaling, R. P. Kovach, L. A. Jones, and C. C. Muhlfeld (2017), Climate-induced glacier and snow loss imperils alpine stream insects, Global Change Biology, 23(7), 2577-2589, doi:10.1111/gcb.13565. Muhlfeld, C. C., R. P. Kovach, L. A. Jones, R. Al-Chokhachy, M. C. Boyer, R. F. Leary, W. H. Lowe, G. Luikart, and F. W. Allendorf (2014), Invasive hybridization in a threatened species is accelerated by climate change, Nature Climate Change, 4(7), 620-624, doi:10.1038/nclimate2252.
348 P930/L29 This line needs a citation to support the content.
349 P931/L10 Insert “the” so the text reads, “last day of the snow.” Do not capitalize spring.
350 P932/L5-9 Other initiatives should be mentioned such as the Greater Yellowstone Coordinating Committee (representing all federal agencies in the Greater Yellowstone Area) that has several climate-change related initiatives, and Crown of the Continent Partnership, which is similarly looking at climate change impacts on headwater streams.
351 P932/L22 This should say “northern and eastern Montana.”
352 P933/L77 Table 22.3 should include information from Montana, which represents about 30% of the prairie pothole region.
353 P936/L6 Stating “things” is not very specific. It is suggested that this be changed to “initiatives” or “programs.”
354 P936/L8-19 The authors should mention that the largest emitters of greenhouse gases in this region are coal-fired power plants and that Wyoming and North Dakota are the highest emitters of greenhouse gas per person in the nation.
355 P937/L8-12 A description of Department of Energy (DOE) supported efforts for carbon capture and sequestration should be described.
356 P938/L7 Why use “some” if they are “among.” Delete “some.”
357 P938/L13 It is unclear what the difference is between climate and seasonality changes. Is this meant to say changes in annual and seasonal climate?
358 P938/L1821 This sentence is poorly written. Rewrite for clarity and parallelism. Suggested edit: “changes in hydrology, phenology, availability of
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
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# Page/Line Comment
traditional plant-based foods, bear migration and hibernation cycles, as well as the health of [whitebark?] pine? There is also a mismatch between traditional stories of past climate and current climate conditions.”
359 P938/L2225 These are general statements (e.g., no salmon in this region), where more specific examples would be helpful.
360 P938/L24 Delete “,”.
361 P938/L31 State which language is quoted.
362 P938/L33 There is a misspelling of the word “Because.”
363 P939/L3 Replace “were” with “was.”
364 P939/L9 Provide more specificity for the statement “changes to temperature and water cycles.”
365 P939/L10 It is suggested that “increasing livestock stress” be added to the list.
366 P940/L6 Provide more specificity for “projected to damage infrastructure.” What types of climate change, for what infrastructure, and where is this happening?
367 P940/L22 Define “colonial/postcolonial.”
368 P940/L30 There is a misspelling of the word “Dakota.”
369 P942/L9 The term “South-central” should be in lower case, as in “south-central” or “south central.”
370 P942/L15 Delete “,”.
371 P942/L24 There should be no capitalization of the word “chokecherry.”
372 P942/L30 There should be no capitalization of the word “olive.”
373 P943/L3-5 For Figure 22.6’s caption, there should be no capitalization of the word “olive.”
374 P943/L3-5 This inset is very hard to evaluate. What is the current distribution of Russian olives and what do the colors and the scale mean? The warm colors may suggest that there is a projected decrease in Russian olives to many readers.
375 P945/L10 Explain why there are no authors from Montana, South Dakota, North Dakota or Wyoming. This does not seem like appropriate representation for a regional assessment and this will reduce its creditability among stakeholders.
376 P945/L36 Replace “montane west” with “western mountains.”
377 P946/L10 In addition to year-to-year variability, there is increased seasonal variability. See the draft NCA4 Chapter 2 and the Montana Climate
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
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# Page/Line Comment
Assessment (Whitlock et al. 2017 in the reference list at the end of this chapter’s line comments).
378 P946/L29 Specificity is needed as not all parts of the region will show an increase in productivity.
379 P946/L30 What weeds in particular are competitive? Greater specificity is needed.
380 P946/L36 It would be helpful for a call-out of these particular studies, especially those studies specific to the Northern Great Plains.
381 P947/L15 The reference to “geographical migration of agricultural practices and enterprises” is part of Key Message 2, but it is not discussed.
382 P947/L3637 This sentence is awkward and needs greater clarity.
383 P948/L5-6 Agricultural land-use change is not a function of climate change. A more nuanced discussion of this point and the factors that shape land-use decisions is needed.
384 P948/L14 What is more important for skiing is that climate change will shorten the ski season, which has economic consequences for the skiing industry.
385 P948/L18 This list should mention the impacts affecting cold-water fisheries, e.g., more invasive species, warmer water temperatures, and lower flow.
386 P948/L24 In addition to disease, upriver movement of warm-water fish and displacement of cold-water species should be mentioned.
387 P949/L10 There are not only climate-induced changes to agricultural land-use, but also changes to the wetlands themselves through late-season drying, early snowmelt, etc.
388 P949/L16 Replace “is” with “are.”
389 P950/L10 Specific examples, or at least references, are needed here.
390 P950/L22 This is the first reference to the Columbia River Basin, which represents a very small part of the Northern Great Plains region.
391 P950/L2728 This sentence about biofuel production is very cryptic. What other biofuels are used? Specify some of the climate change impacts.
392 P951/L32 It would be helpful to list state-level climate assessments for additional information.
Chapter 22-Suggested References
  • Bathke, D.J., R. J. Oglesby, C. M. Rowe, and D. A. Wilhite (2014), Understanding and Assessing Climate Change: Implications for Nebraska, University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
×
  • Bekkerman, A., G. W. Brester, and M. Taylor (2016), Forecasting a moving target: the roles of quality and timing for determining northern US wheat basis, Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, 41, 35-41.
  • Brimelow, J. C., W. R. Burrows, and J. M. Hanesiak (2017), The changing hail threat over North America in response to anthropogenic climate change, Nature Climate Change, 7, 516-22.
  • Lanning, S. P., K. Kephart, G. R. Carlson, J. E. Eckhoff, R. N. Stougaard, D. M. Wichman, J. M. Martin, and L. E. Talbert (2010), Climatic change and agronomic performance of hard red spring wheat from 1950 to 2007, Crop Science, 50, 835-841.
  • Pederson, G. T., S. T. Gray, C. A. Woodhouse, J. L. Betancourt, D. B. Fagre, J. S. Littell, E. Watson, B. H. Luckman, and L. J. Graumlich (2012), The unusual nature of recent snowpack declines in the North American cordillera, Science, 333(6040), 332-335.
  • Plowright, R. I., P. C. Cross, G. M. Tabor, E. Almberg, L. Bienen, and P. J. Hudson (2012), Climate change and infectious disease dynamics, in New Directions in Conservation Medicine: Applied Cases of Ecological Health, A. Alonso Aguirre, Richard Ostfeld, and Peter Daszak, eds., Oxford University Press, Oxford, UK.
  • Whitlock, C., W. Cross, B. Maxwell, N. Silverman, and A. A. Wade (2017), Montana Climate Assessment, Montana State University and University of Montana, Montana Institute on Ecosystems, Bozeman and Missoula, MT, doi:10.15788/m2ww8w.
  • Dobrowski, S. Z., J. Abatzoglou, A. K. Swanson, J. A. Greenberg, A. R. Mynsberge, Z. A. Holden, and M. K. Schwartz (2013), The climate velocity of the contiguous United States during the 20th century, Global Change Biology, 19, 241-251. doi:10.1111/gcb.12026.

23: SOUTHERN GREAT PLAINS

# Page/Line Comment
393 P966/L30 Brimelow et al. 2017 should be cited for hail threat.

Brimelow, J. C., W. R. Burrows, and J. M. Hanesiak (2017), The changing hail threat over North America in response to anthropogenic climate change, Nature Climate Change, 7(7), 516-522, doi:10.1038/nclimate3321.
394 P970/L33-P971/L4 Add references to statements in the last two paragraphs of the box regarding changes to projected frequencies and intensities.
395 P971/L7 The time span for this observation needs to be stated.
396 P973/L2238 The paragraph on the drought in 2011-2015 and its resulting economic impacts is an interesting one, but the text is not currently clear about
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
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# Page/Line Comment
what the intended takeaways are: (a) an indicator of the kinds of things we expect to increase in frequency in the future with climate change, (b) an episode that is attributable to climate change, or (c) other? Please specify. Also, consider this as a potentially suitable case study box.
397 P973/L28 Replace “coal plant” with “coal-fired power plant.”
398 P974/L2-P975/L4 The main point of this box is not clear. Is this intended to just point out an example where climate early warning information exists? It would be a more powerful example if a successful utilization of this information by a stakeholder could be described.
399 P977/L18 Insert “that” so the text reads, “role that climate.”
400 P978/L34 The Oklahoma Mesonet is referenced here. In general, the three states comprising this region have very good state/local monitoring systems, which, in some ways, have been a model for other regions. Consider mentioning climate monitoring investments in the region in the context of either trend identification or adaptive capacity-building.
401 P979/L6 Replace “Nation” with “the U.S.”
402 P980/L2132 The Box 23.4 discussion on the El Paso desalination plant is quite limited and its takeaways are not clear. How much are costs reduced relative to seawater desalination given the brackish waters? Also, consider revising the box title since the desalination plant is being discussed as one mechanism in a broader suite of methodologies for achieving water security.
403 P982/L1215 Whooping cranes vulnerabilities being used as an example of species range changes should be referenced in the draft NCA4 Ecosystems chapter (Chapter 7) if discussed here.
404 P983/L25 Where is the “Texas bay” located? Is this same as the Texas Gulf Coast?
405 P983/L31 The words “ground water” should be one word: “groundwater.”
406 P988/L10 It is not clear how Phytophthora is influenced by an increase in invasive species. Is this a non-native fungus?
407 P991/L2930 It would be helpful to include more information on the types of individuals that attend the engagement workshop and how they engaged in the process.
408 P991/L38 The difference between “doctors, academicians, researchers and scientists” is not clear. Please clarify. Are they medical doctors? Are the researchers from federal and state agencies?
409 P994/L7-8 The description of confidence and likelihood for Key Message 3 makes the point that habitat created by invasive species due to climate changes has improved populations of other species. This may be in reference to
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
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# Page/Line Comment
increased invasive species following flooding and the increase in detrimental fungal species, but it is not entirely clear. This is mentioned only on page 988, lines 8-12, but the point is not clearly developed and seemed like a minor observation.
410 P994/L2226 The description of evidence base for Key Message 4 makes reference to Chapter 7 on the point of increased microbial and chemical contamination of crops and water in agricultural environments. That message is not currently clear in Chapter 7.
411 P994/L7-8 Insert “including fungi” at the end of the sentence.

24: NORTHWEST

# Page/Line Comment
412 P1017/L2333 Also cite consequences of temperature/range shifts for fisheries (not all are negative—some fish species are/will enter fishing areas where they did not previously occur). See references in the draft NCA4 Chapter 9 and elsewhere.
413 P1018/L10 Change “effect” to “affect.”
414 P1018/L1-7 Include documented literature on range shift effects on fisheries/management (not just species), e.g., Ianelli et al. 2016 and other references in the draft NCA4 Chapter 9.
415 P1018/L1821 Provide a citation for the good point on variation in adaptive capacity throughout the region.
416 P1025/L2021 Cite Ianelli et al. 2016 and Seung and Ianelli 2016 in this chapter, which are referenced in the draft NCA4 Chapter 9).
417 P1026/L2829 Cite mitigation and other co-benefits from climate-based species/wildlife management as another emerging area.
418 P1031/L1112 The text should say “has reduced the impact of sea level rise for some areas in the Northwest.”
419 P1031/L21-P1032/L2 Include hybrid “green and gray” infrastructure approaches as part of the emerging issues.

25: SOUTHWEST

# Page/Line Comment
420 P1088/L810 Mention why the significant technology sector in the region cares about climate change (or how climate change affects the sector).
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
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421 P1088/L1718 Water supply varies not only with precipitation, but also with withdrawals/use, as mentioned in the preceding sentence.
422 P1092/L1920 Regarding Oroville Dam spill risks, reduced water supply and maintenance required for aging infrastructure are two risks mentioned in the text. Another major spill risk is the risk to human lives/property/infrastructure from catastrophic failure.
423 P1092/L38 Text should say “rather than being forced to use it immediately.”
424 P1094/L2-8 The middle sentences on drought should be rephrased to focus on fire impacts. Start with “forests have dried,” driving wildfire increase, and then include an explanation of how droughts have contributed to forest drying.
425 P1094/L21 Text should say “carbon, in California ecosystems.”
426 P1098/L3637 Text should say “in naturally acidic upwellings.”
427 P1099/L3-4 The text needs a citation for the economic risks of ocean acidification to the shellfish industry.
428 P1100/L8 The legend should be consistent with the true color of the temperature line in Figure 25.4. It looks brown in the draft NCA4, but the caption states that it is black.
429 P1102/L213 The paragraph starts with a discussion of how tribes are adapting; the paragraph ends with an example of how vulnerable they are to decreasing water supply. This text needs edits for internal consistency. Perhaps the two points could be merged with other paragraph(s).
430 P1103/L1415 Briefly state the cause of the increased cost in shifting from hydroelectric to fossil fuels in California (see the cited Gleick, 2015 reference).
431 P1103/L3639 This sentence needs editing for length and clarity.
432 P1104/L8 Text should say “Energy production causes the.”
433 P1104/L1114 This sentence needs editing for length and clarity.
434 P1104/L1415 What economic damages would carbon emission reductions cut and how? This needs a brief explanation.
435 P1114/L21 A citation is needed for the portion of this sentence referring to the increase in flooding. This is the first mention of flooding related to this key message and is strangely stated as part of the documentation in the “drought” key message. More detail on this point can be found in the main text review of this draft NCA4 chapter.
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
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# Page/Line Comment
436 P1117/L12 An incomplete sentence ends with “to diminishing.”
Chapter 25 Suggested References
SUPPORT FOR KEY MESSAGE 5
  • Johnstone, J. A., and T. E. Dawson (2010), Climatic context and ecological implications of summer fog decline in the coast redwood region, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 107(10), 4533-4538, doi:10.1073/pnas.0915062107.
  • Iacobellis, S.F., and D.R. Cayan, 2013: The variability of California summertime marine stratus: Impacts on surface air temperatures. Journal of Geophysical Research—Atmospheres 118, 9105-9122, doi:10.1002/jgrd.50652.
  • Schwartz, R.E., A. Gershunov, S.F. Iacobellis, and D.R. Cayan, 2014: North American west coast summer low cloudiness: Broadscale variability associated with sea surface temperature. Geophysical Research Letters 41(9), 3307-3314, doi:10.1002/2014GL059825.
  • Torregrosa, A., C. Combs, and J. Peters (2016), GOES-derived fog and low cloud indices for coastal north and central California ecological analyses, Earth and Space Science 3, 46-67, doi:10.1002/2015EA000119.
SUPPORT FOR KEY MESSAGE 7
  • Guirguis, K, Gershunov A, Tardy A, Basu R. 2014. The impact of recent heat waves on human health in California. Journal of Applied Meteorology and Climatology 53:3-19. doi:10.1175/jamc-d-130130.1.
  • Gershunov, A, Guirguis K. 2012. California heat waves in the present and future. Geophysical Research Letters 39 doi:10.1029/2012gl052979.
  • Guirguis, K., A. Gershunov, D.R. Cayan and D. Pierce, 2017: Heat wave probability in the changing climate of the Southwest US. Climate Dynamics doi:10.1007/s00382-017-3850-3.
WEB-ACCESSIBLE ITEMS FOR URBAN CLIMATE ISSUES AND BARRIERS TO ADAPTATION
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
×
EXAMPLES OF RESOURCES FOR ADAPTATION AND PLANNING
SOURCES OF CLIMATE DATA

26: ALASKA

# Page/Line Comment
437 P1170/L3334 There is clumsy wording of the text “qualitative … ecosystems” and is difficult to understand. This differs from many of the relatively simple definitions in the literature.
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
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# Page/Line Comment
438 P1170/L3739 The range of adaptations that are underway, as stated in this sentence, are not described in the adaptation section of this chapter.
439 P1171/L2-6 It is unclear how Figure 26.4 relates to the text that precedes or follows it.
440 P1172/L133 Add citations to the introduction.
441 P1174/L8 The text says “(c) same as (c),” but it should say “(d) same as (c).”
442 P1174/L29 Do “coastal areas” refer to all coastal areas of the state, including southeastern Alaska?
443 P1177/L8 Is it correct that fish feed on pteropods rather than pteropods feeding on fish?
444 P1179/L11 The cited Mann et al. 2012 did not discuss shrubs. They talk about the conversion of conifer forests to deciduous vegetation (including shrublands and deciduous forests). They emphasize the importance of aspen forests (not shrublands) as a future state that will become more common. See also comment #447.
445 P1179/L18 What about the effects of permafrost thaw on the water-quality impacts of large mines?
446 P1184/L24 Change “quality” to “air quality.”
447 P1186/L3032 The same sentence is repeated twice.
448 P1196/L2 Is “Arctic ice sheet,” meant to be “sea ice”? Clarification is needed.
449 P1196/L34 The conclusion by Mann et al. 2012 referred to changes from conifer to deciduous cover, not changes from forest cover to shrubs, as stated in this sentence (and in an earlier reference to the paper by Mann et al.). The statement that forests are changing to shrublands may be true, but the Mann et al. 2012 reference does not support this statement. See comment #442.
450 P1197/L6-8 The sentence “Thermal … regions” seems to have words missing and is unclear.
451 P1201/L1-2 There is a word missing from this sentence.

Appendix 5: FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

# Page/Line Comment
452 P1444/L3536 A better topic sentence would be “Additional lines of evidence support the idea that the world is warming.”
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
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# Page/Line Comment
453 P1445/L7-9 Because the FAQ focus is on how we know the Earth is warming and not why the Earth is warming, reference to human activities being responsible for the warming does not seem appropriate.
454 P1444/L16 The link included on page 1444, line 16 should be more clearly noted as an external source. As currently written, it gives the impression that it links to Figures A5.1 and A5.2 in the draft NCA4.
455 P1451/L11 The text needs a comma after “heat.”
456 P1451/L13 Define the abbreviation GHG before using it (if this line is kept in the text).
457 P1453/L2 The word lead “lead” should be changed to “leads” or “must lead.”
458 P1447/L17 Insert the word “rapidly” so that it reads “use of coal, oil, and gas has rapidly changed the atmosphere.”
459 P1451/L15 The word “similar” should be changed to “similarly,” because the physical mechanism is actually different (greenhouse versus greenhouse gases). Alternatively, the comparison could be omitted.
460 P1459/L13 It would be appropriate to say “very strong regional effects in some areas.”
461 P1459/L1316 This text is likely too technical for the intended audience and should be revised.
462 P1470/L14 The text currently says “scientists compare data.” which could be revised to say “scientists evaluate data.”
463 P1471/L21 Edit text to say “at a given location over periods of multiple years to decades.”
464 P1473/L21 The word “arctic” should be capitalized.
465 P1475/L36 Insert “noted above” so that the text says “scientific evidence noted above indicates that.”
466 P1476/L5 Insert “human-caused” so that the text says “of human-caused global warming on these events.”
467 P1476/L12 It is suggested that the words “the severity of” and “some” be added, so that the text reads “global warming has contributed to the severity of some individual weather and climate events.”
468 P1476/L15 The text that says “we can model” is jargon. It is suggested that “model” be replaced with “simulate.”
469 P1477/L3 Insert “human-caused” so that the text says “to detect the influence of human-caused global warming.”
470 P1477/L4 Insert “events” so that the text states “and, to a lesser extent, heavy rainfall events, is better at present.”
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
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# Page/Line Comment
471 P1477/L7-8 It is suggested that the text be changed to the following wording: “ability to attribute how much human-caused global warming contributes to specific weather and climate events.”
472 P1477/L12 Insert “human-caused” so that the text says “link human-caused global warming to particular weather and.”
473 P1477/L15 Insert “human-caused” so that the text says “while human-caused global warming contributed.”
474 P1477/L17 Change the wording to: “activity, but human-caused global warming leads to.”
475 P1477/L33 Clarification is needed here. A change in wording to: “exist, only that the data record is not long enough.” is suggested.
476 P1488 The intermediate scenario referenced in Figure A5.29 should be consistently labeled throughout the report and FAQs.
477 P1488/L16 The text should say “Sea level is expected to continue rising at an accelerating rate this century, increasing the frequency of nuisance flooding, as well as intensifying coastal.”
Appendix 5-Suggested References
FAQ: WHY ARE SCIENTISTS SO CERTAIN THAT HUMAN ACTIVITIES ARE THE PRIMARY CAUSE OF RECENT GLOBAL WARMING?
  • Marcott, S. A., J. D. Shakun, P. U. Clark, and A. C. Mix (2013), A reconstruction of regional and global temperature for the past 11,300 years, Science, 339, 1198-1201.
  • Marsicek, J., B. N. Shuman, P. J. Bartlein, S. L. Shafer, and S. Brewer (2018), Reconciling divergent trends and millennial variations in Holocene temperatures, Nature, 554, 92.
FAQ: WHAT ROLE DOES WATER VAPOR PLAY IN GLOBAL WARMING?
  • Myhre, G., D. Shindell, F.-M. Bréon, W. Collins, J. Fuglestvedt, J. Huang, D. Koch, J.-F. Lamarque, D. Lee, B. Mendoza, T. Nakajima, A. Robock, G. Stephens, T. Takemura, and H. Zhang (2013), Anthropogenic and Natural Radiative Forcing, in Climate Change 2013: The Physical Science Basis. Contribution of Working Group I to the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, T. F. Stocker, D. Qin, G.-K. Plattner, M. Tignor, S. K. Allen, J. Boschung, A. Nauels, Y. Xia, V. Bex, and P. M. Midgley, eds., Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, United Kingdom and New York, NY, USA.
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B: Line Comments." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Review of the Draft Fourth National Climate Assessment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25013.
×
FAQ: WHAT IS THE SOCIAL COST OF CARBON?
  • NASEM (2017), Valuing Climate Damages: Updating Estimation of the Social Cost of Carbon Dioxide, Washington, DC, The National Academies Press.
FAQ: HOW FAST ARE GLACIERS MELTING IN GLACIER NATIONAL PARK?
  • Pederson, G. T., D. B. Fagre, S. T. Gray, and L. J. Graumlich (2004), Decadal-scale climate drivers for glacial dynamics in Glacier National Park, Montana, USA, Geophysical Research Letters, 31, L12203, doi:10.1029/2004GL019770.
  • Pederson, G. T., L. J. Graumlich, D. B. Fagre, T. Kipfer, and C. C. Muhlfeld (2010), A century of climate and ecosystem change in Western Montana: What do temperature trends portend?, Climatic Change, 98, 133-154.
  • Pederson, G. T., S. T. Gray, C. A. Woodhouse, J. L. Betancourt, D. B. Fagre, J. S. Littell, E. Watson, B. H. Luckman, and L. J. Graumlich (2012), The unusual nature of recent snowpack declines in the North American cordillera, Science, 333(6040), 332-335.
  • Pederson, G. T., S. T. Gray, T. Ault, W. Marsh, D. B. Fagre, A. G. Bunn, C. A. Woodhouse, and L. J. Graumlich (2011), Climatic controls on the snowmelt hydrology of the northern Rocky Mountains, Journal of Climate, 24, 1666-1687.
  • Pederson, G. T., J. L. Betancourt, and G. J. McCabe (2013), Regional patterns and proximal causes of the recent snowpack decline in the Rocky Mountains, US, Geophysical Research Letters, 40, doi: 10.1002/grl.50424.
FAQ: IS CLIMATE CHANGE AFFECTING U.S. WILDFIRES?
  • Abatzoglou, J. T., and A. P. Williams (2016), Impact of anthropogenic climate change on wildfire across western US forests, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 113(42),11770-11775.
  • Jolly, W. M., M. A. Cochrane, P. H. Freeborn, Z. A. Holden, T. J. Brown, G. J. Williamson, and D. M. J. S. Bowman (2015), Climate-induced variations in global wildfire danger from 1979 to 2013, Nature Communications, 6, 7537.
  • Schoennagel, T., J. K. Balch, H. Brenkert-Smith, P. E. Dennison, B. J. Harvey, M. A. Krawchuk, N. Mietkiewicz, P. Morgan, M. A. Moritz, R. Rasker, M. G. Turner, and C. Whitlock (2017), Adapt to more wildfire in western North American forests as climate changes, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, doi:10.1073/pnas.1617464114.
  • Westerling, A. L. (2016), Increasing western US forest wildfire activity: Sensitivity to changes in the timing of spring, Philosphical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 371(1696), 20150178.
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Climate change poses many challenges that affect society and the natural world. With these challenges, however, come opportunities to respond. By taking steps to adapt to and mitigate climate change, the risks to society and the impacts of continued climate change can be lessened. The National Climate Assessment, coordinated by the U.S. Global Change Research Program, is a mandated report intended to inform response decisions. Required to be developed every four years, these reports provide the most comprehensive and up-to-date evaluation of climate change impacts available for the United States, making them a unique and important climate change document.

The draft Fourth National Climate Assessment (NCA4) report reviewed here addresses a wide range of topics of high importance to the United States and society more broadly, extending from human health and community well-being, to the built environment, to businesses and economies, to ecosystems and natural resources. This report evaluates the draft NCA4 to determine if it meets the requirements of the federal mandate, whether it provides accurate information grounded in the scientific literature, and whether it effectively communicates climate science, impacts, and responses for general audiences including the public, decision makers, and other stakeholders.

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