Scientists to Obama: Convene climate change ‘summit’ to map out federal action

“With the significant increases in damage due to climate-driven weather extremes, ranging from more intense storms like Superstorm Sandy, more intense and frequent wildfires, severe flooding, and prolonged droughts, people are becoming increasingly aware that something is wrong and that the federal government needs to take action,” adds the letter, which is also from the Wildlife Society, the American Meteorological Society and the Ecological Society of America.

The groups say the summit should address a range of topics, such as Environmental Protection Agency actions; Agriculture Department steps that can help reduce emissions through improved land management and restoration; and better coordination among federal, state and local governments on adaptation to climate change, to name a few.

“By taking bold and creative steps to address climate change, you have a unique opportunity to make climate change solutions a signature part of your legacy,” the letter states.

Obama has vowed to focus on climate change in his second term but has not provided specifics about his plans, prompting intense anticipation about what he may propose in next week’s State of the Union speech.