«The news is not good, but it is not surprising either,» said Waleed Abdalati of the University of Colorado, a former NASA chief scientist who was not part of this report. «What we are seeing is a manifestation of the changes that were anticipated in recent decades.»

The 2,200-page report comes after five consecutive months in which the world set monthly and daily heat records. Comes as USA has set a record with 25 different weather conditions disasters this year that caused at least $1 billion in damage.

“Climate change is finally moving from being an abstract issue of the future to a present, concrete and relevant issue. It’s happening right now,” said the report’s lead author, Katharine Hayhoe, chief scientist at the Nature Conservancy and professor at Texas Tech University. Five years ago, when the last assessment was issued, fewer people were experiencing climate change firsthand.

This year’s polls conducted by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research demonstrate this.

In September, About 9 in 10 Americans (87%) said they had experienced at least one extreme weather event in the past five years: drought, extreme heat, severe storms, wildfires or floods. That was up from 79% who said that in April.

Hayhoe said there is also a new emphasis on evaluating marginalized communities.

«It’s not so much a question of what hits where, but rather what hits who and how well those people can handle the impacts,» said Abdalati of the University of Colorado, who saw much of his neighborhood destroyed in the Marshall wildfire in 2021.

Biden administration officials emphasize that all is not lost and the report details actions to reduce emissions and adapt to what is coming.

Americans at all levels of government are “stepping up to meet this moment,” said White House science adviser Arati Prabhakar. «All of these actions, taken together, give us hope because they tell us that we can do great things at the scale that is required, at the scale that the climate really notices.»

By cleaning up industry, the way electricity is produced and how transportation is powered, climate change can be dramatically reduced. Hausfather said that when emissions stop, warming stops, “so we can stop this acceleration if we, as a society, act together.”

But some scientists said parts of the assessment are too optimistic.

«The report’s optimistic graphs and outlook obscure the dangers ahead,» said Stanford University climate scientist Rob Jackson. «We are not prepared for what is coming.»