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Global warming's fingerprints are all over recent extreme weather, research shows

Extreme weather events, from droughts to floods and heat waves, are some of the most tangible present day impacts of global warming, and they will take center stage in speeches at the upcoming Paris Climate Summit. Now a new report gives leaders pushing to reduce emissions of global warming pollution, including President Obama, additional ammunition.

The report, published Thursday as a special supplement to the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, amounts to the largest-ever assessment of global warming’s role in intensifying the severity and altering the likelihood of extreme weather events during 2014.

It amounts to the equivalent of a climate change CSI report, and its conclusions are damning in pointing to global warming as being an accomplice to numerous damaging extreme events worldwide.

In total, the report contains analyses from 32 different research groups examining 28 extreme weather and climate events on all continents. The dozens of researchers from 21 countries found that climate change’s fingerprints are all over the scene of the crime in more than half of these events, including California wildfires, Middle Eastern drought and heat waves in Australia.

Specifically, tropical cyclones in the central Pacific, deadly heat waves in Australia, Asia and South America, and a deadly snowstorm in the Himalayas, were each in part the result of human activities, the studies show.