A draft of the Third National Climate Assessment (NCA) was made for public review and will be released online today.

The NCA is being developed by the U.S. Global Change Research Program to document how climate change is impacting the United States, and how the nation is responding. The National Climate Assessment Development Advisory Committee, comprised of 60 members of scientists, business leaders, and other experts, is charged with producing this assessment. The final report is expected to be delivered to the President in 2014.

Following is a statement by Dr. Andrew Steer, President, World Resources Institute:

“The evidence is clear and mounting. The United States sits at the center of the climate crisis. Record heat is devastating crops, rivers are drying up, and storms are bearing down on our cities. Climate change is taking its toll on people and their economies, and will only become more intense without a strong and rapid response here in the United States and around the globe. It’s not too late to take action, but given lags in policy and geophysical processes, the window is closing.

“In his second term, President Obama has a chance to ensure his legacy as a leader on climate change. Now is the time for the Administration to move forward with new standards on power plants and other actions to put America on course to a low-carbon future.”