U.S. Rep. Rush Holt (NJ-12) today released the following statement in response to Climate Change 2013, the latest in a series of reports on climate change written by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
The Panel's most recent prior climate change report was issued in 2007.
Holt, a Ph.D. physicist, serves as the ranking Democrat on the U.S. House Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources, which oversees all energy development and mining on federal lands.
"This Congress seems incapable of governing without a crisis to force it into action. This week's crisis is the looming government shutdown, but this is only the latest in a long line of governing crises.
"Because this Congress is stuck in a last-minute way of thinking, it has failed to act or even consider legislation related to climate change. But today's IPCC report confirms that climate change is already happening and is already costing American lives and dollars. Greenhouse gases have increased to levels unprecedented in at least the last 800,000 years, and carbon dioxide concentrations have increased by 40 percent since pre-industrial times.
"Climate change is real, it is immediate, and it should be treated as the crisis it is. Just ask the victims of the droughts, the floods, the wildfires, the superstorms that have struck America in recent years."