Supporting EPA Develop Indicators of Climate Change
In its 2016 edition of Climate Change Indicators in the United States, more than 40 indicators of climate change demonstrate that global warming is already affecting the environment and society worldwide. The report, supported in part with data from Abt Associates, was released in 2016 by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
Abt developed 14 of these indicators by analyzing observed data on key environmental measures in the United States. This included refining existing indicators reflecting changes in ozone concentrations, extreme temperatures, and snow cover, and developing six new indicators at a national scale:
- Wildfire frequency and severity;
- The spread of Lyme disease;
- Changes in the number of days during which either air conditioning or heat are required and water levels;
- The rate of reported West Nile virus;
- A sub-indicator for heat related deaths, featuring heat and cardiovascular disease; and
- On a regional scale, the temperatures of the Great Lakes.
In addition, Abt developed content for several special features in the report, including measures of drought in the Southwest, changes in the date of peak cherry blossom bloom in Washington, D.C., changes in the date of river ice break-up in Alaska, and a summary of the connections between climate change and human health.
In partnership with the Institute for Tribal Environmental Professionals, Abt also supported EPA in its efforts to incorporate climate change impacts on tribal communities, resources, and ways of life into the climate change indicators report. For example, the 2016 report includes trends in stream temperatures in the Snake River.
Read more about Abt’s work on climate change indicators: