Wednesday, May 27, 2015

EXTREMES

Global warming is making hot days hotter, rainfall and flooding heavier, hurricanes stronger and droughts more severe. This intensification of weather and climate extremes will be the most visible impact of global warming in our everyday lives. It is also causing dangerous changes to the landscape of our world, adding stress to wildlife species and their habitat.
(See here).

While some regions of the USA have been experiencing more extreme weather, it's nothing like the extremes experienced in other parts of the world. In India, for instance, soaring temperatures are killing many hundreds of inhabitants - and people there are not unused to extreme heat.
(See here).

Oklahoma has never been short of some level of weather extremes, but the pendulum has been swinging ever more widely during the past few years, noticeable even during the relatively short time I've lived here (since late 2004). Our local newspaper's headline today was apt: "From the Driest to the Wettest". Texas, our neighbour to the south, is experiencing much the same, and worse in some areas. (See here).

This year's long, colder than usual winter followed a few very dry summer seasons. The state experienced ongoing severe drought conditions. These are suddenly ending with weeks of regular violent storms and torrential rains. I'll not even mention the attendant tornadic activity because that comes with the territory, always has.

In 2015 the annual rainy tornado season is lasting longer, with regular daily storms, heavy rainfall bringing flash floods. Rivers and lakes are filling rapidly, some overflowing. In many ways we are thankful - this is beneficial, much needed.

Yet, one does wonder.


What if this is part of a new pattern? Could the region cope with a regular mini-monsoon season? I doubt it. Drainage systems here have always seemed primitive to me, coming as I did from oft rain-soaked England where they have the drainage issue down to a fine art. Even there, though, flooding occasionally does cause problems.

Will local Okie and Texas politicians ever deign to accept that climate change is actually happening? If they do, eventually accept as much, will they have the gumption to do something about trying to slow down the rate of change?

8 comments:

Jefferson's Guardian said...

"Will local Okie and Texas politicians ever deign to accept that climate change is actually happening? If they do, eventually accept as much, will they have the gumption to do something about trying to slow down the rate of change?"

With "the honorable" James Inhofe serving as senior U.S. Senator from Oklahoma, your first question is undoubtedly an absolute "no".

mike said...

United States House Committee on Science, Space and Technology is chaired by Lamar Smith, a Texas Republican and Christian Scientist, and previously by Ralph Hall, another Texas Republican. Both graduated from non-secular universities with law degrees. All subcommittees are currently chaired by Republicans. Neither Hall nor Smith are supportive of global warming:
"Texas Rep. Lamar Smith, the top Republican on the House Science Committee, isn’t pulling any punches when criticizing the Obama administration’s plan to cut carbon dioxide emissions. Smith called President Barack Obama’s global warming agenda a 'religion' and not based on sound science.

Smith writes that Obama’s warnings of catastrophic global warming just aren’t coming true, and the claims peddled by the administration 'sound more like scare tactics than fact-based declarations.'

'Instead of letting political ideology or climate ‘religion’ guide government policy, we should focus on good science,' Smith wrote in the oped pages of the Wall Street Journal. 'The facts alone should determine what climate policy options the U.S. considers.'”
http://dailycaller.com/2015/04/24/congressman-global-warming-is-a-religion/


I particularly like his, "The facts alone should determine...", as this is a fundamentalist that doesn't believe in evolution, and the Earth is only a few thousand years old...ha, ha. Shit-science has become the norm for the conservative, Christian right, eg Ivanhoe's tossing a snowball on the senate floor to disprove warming. Forget about the poles melting, which hasn't happened for about 100,000 years. We shouldn't worry...all is in the good hands of the creationists and their god...and they are saving us from ourselves.

Climate change is just one of the too many concerns facing ALL life on Earth. The seas of micro-macro plastic in our oceans, Monsanto's Roundup weed killer and GMOs, deforestation, massive extinctions, diseases, racism, war...an endless list. The problems are additive and we humans won't be happy until annihilation is complete. An easy solution at this point is to eliminate all humans, as we are the source of our catastrophic changes.

Twilight said...

Jefferson's Guardian ~ Hi there! Sadly, I fear you are right. :-(

Twilight said...

mike ~ I'll echo my reply to Jefferson's Guardian: sadly, I fear you are right! :-(
All the factors you list have been brought about by ourselves.

Even if there is some level of natural climate change involved, as there could well be, and as is the favourite argument of "deniers", we have almost certainly had some part in accelerating its rate of progress, and could, if the will were there, make efforts to de-accelerate.

mike (again) said...

I unintentionally called Senator Inhofe, "Ivanhoe". The novel does serve as metaphor for the climate change struggle, with Sir Brian de Bois-Guilbert as the primary antagonist.

"Upon arriving at the scene of the witch-burning, Ivanhoe engages Brian de Bois-Guilbert in single combat and goes down along with his mount, but the Templar reels in the saddle and falls from his horse. Ivanhoe recovers to put his foot on Bois-Guilbert's chest but does not kill him. The Templar has suffered a seizure and died 'a victim to the violence of his own contending passions'...".
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ivanhoe

It's unfortunate that the "violence of his own contending passions" will bring us all down in this struggle for human dominion of the globe.

Twilight said...

mike (again) ~ I don't remember ever reading "Ivanhoe" - or seeing any movie about the character. (Shame on me - it was written by my maiden surname's namesake Sir Walter Scott). An interesting reading of Wiki's page cleared some fog, and revealed also that Robin Hood's character was part of the tale...and has possibly eclipsed "Ivanhoe" himself over the centuries. Would that some modern day Robin would come along and flippin' eclipse James Inhofe!!! :-)

Sabina said...

NY Times a day or so ago -
http://www.nytimes.com/2015/05/29/opinion/the-arrogance-of-jeb-bush.html
Nuff said.

Twilight said...

Sabina ~ Groan! But what else would we expect? :-(