On the 18th anniversary of the end of global warming, the Obama administration announced a new "Climate Action" competition to honor and reward schemes to reduce carbon emissions and "preparing for the impacts of a changing climate."
The White House announcement says the administration will "invest in" the winners:
"The Obama Administration is committed to taking decisive action to combat climate change. Today, the Administration announced a new Climate Action Champions competition that will identify, showcase, and invest in up to 15 local and tribal governments across the country that demonstrate an ongoing commitment to cutting carbon pollution and preparing for the impacts of a changing climate. The competition will be administered by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), and will be implemented in collaboration with a broad range of Federal agencies."
Climate Action Champions will also "receive technical assistance," get an advisor to help them "leverage existing Federal programs and resources" and "receive preferred status" in their applications for federal grant money. They will also join a climate "peer network" and have opportunities to promote their projects.
In turn, winners will "help American communities to accelerate and expand their efforts at the nexus of carbon pollution reduction and climate resilience."
The White House says climate action is urgent because the impacts of climate change "are already being felt today":
"The impacts of climate change are not just an issue for future generations-they are already being felt today. Communities across the country are on the front lines of climate change and are experiencing extreme weather events - from more severe droughts and wildfires to fiercer storms to record heat waves. The past decade has been the hottest on record in the United States. Rising sea levels mean more powerful storm surges and flooded streets in places like Norfolk and Miami."
But, as Patrick Michaels, director of the Cato Institute's Center for the Study of Science explains it, today marks the 18th straight year without global warming - and, even if the non-warming streak ends at 18 years, it would take a quarter-century for global temperatures to reflect the change:
"According to the datasets used last year, October 1st will mark the 18th year of "no significant warming trend in surface average temperature.
"And even if the current 18-year trend were to end, it would still take nearly 25 years for average global temperature figures to reflect the change, said Michaels, who has a Ph.D. in ecological climatology and spent three decades as a research professor of environmental sciences at the University of Virginia."
What's more, despite the White House's claim of "fiercer storms," we've gone more than 3,200 days (a record) without a hurricane.
And, Antarctic sea ice is currently at a record high
Applications for the competition will be open until Oct. 27, 2014 and can be found here.