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Monday, February 17, 2014

Research Points To Jet Stream In Brutal Winter

Across the U.S., it has been a brutal winter, from the drought in the West to ice and snow in the South and frigid temperatures across the states.

New research presented at the American Association Advancement of Science in Chicago is pointing to changes in the jet stream as the reason for these lingering weather conditions.

Here & Now’s Meghna Chakrabarti speaks with Jennifer Francis, research professor at Rutgers’ Institute of Marine and Coastal Sciences, about her findings.

Guest

  • Jennifer Francis, research professor at Rutgers’ Institute of Marine and Coastal Sciences

Transcript

MEGHNA CHAKRABARTI, HOST:

Well, in Indonesia this weekend, Secretary of State John Kerry called on all the nations of the world to respond to climate change. Meanwhile, here in the U.S., some scientists say that climate change is one of the reasons behind the brutal winter weather that's hit much of the country this season. An expert panel at the American Association for the Advancement of Science in Chicago points specifically to significant climate-driven changes to the jet stream.

Jennifer Francis was on that panel. Welcome.

JENNIFER FRANCIS: Thank you very much. I'm glad to be here.

CHAKRABARTI: So first of all, just about everybody who watches the nightly news sees pictures of the jet stream on evening weather reports all the time. Explain to us what the jet stream has to do with this recent extreme weather we've been seeing across so much of the country.

FRANCIS: Right, well, the jet stream really is the key part of the climate system that determines our weather. It creates it, and it steers it. And it's this fast-moving river of air high over our heads where the jets fly that goes from west to east around the Northern Hemisphere, and it takes kind of a wavy path as it does so.

CHAKRABARTI: And so, Jennifer, tell us about why the recent weather pattern we've been seeing is so different. I understand it has something to do with how cold it is in the Arctic, versus lower latitudes.

FRANCIS: Right. So the reason we believe things are starting to change is because the Arctic is warming much faster than the areas farther south. So that means this difference in temperature between the Arctic and areas farther south is getting smaller. And that means the force that drives the jet stream is getting weaker.

And when the jet stream winds that blow from west to east get weaker, the jet stream tends to take a wavier path as it travels around the Northern Hemisphere. And when those waves that are in the jet stream naturally get bigger, they tend to move more slowly from west to east. That means that the weather associated with those waves in the jet stream tends to also move more slowly from west to east.

So, for somebody down on the Earth, it feels like the weather pattern that you're in is lasting longer. This winter, that's exactly what's been happening, is we've had this extremely wavy jet stream pattern. There's been a big northward swing up into Alaska, bringing a lot of warm air up into Alaska. They've had an extremely warm winter there.

And then it's dipped southward over California, blocking the usual storms from coming into California, contributing to the drought they're having there. And then it continues southward in a big southward dip, which we call a trough, over the eastern two-thirds of the country. And this has allowed the Arctic air to spill down over much of the eastern half of the U.S., causing this cold spell that we've been having for the last couple of months.

And so, as I said, when the jet stream gets into one of these very wavy patterns like this, it tends to sometimes even get stuck, and that's what we've seen this winter, is this very wavy pattern has been in place, really, since the beginning of December.

CHAKRABARTI: My question for you is you mentioned that the problem seems to be due to the fact that the Arctic is warming so much faster than normal. Is that because of climate change?

FRANCIS: Well yes, the Arctic is warming faster than normal because of the increasing greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. And this is something that we've known about for a very long time. We've been expecting to see the Arctic start to warm up really rapidly, compared to everywhere else on Earth.

CHAKRABARTI: Jennifer, I know you've been studying this for a long period of time. And it seems that we're now in a new age where the effects on climate change are really everywhere. They're in our own backyards, and they last a long time. I mean, what's your greatest concern from the research that you presented this weekend?

FRANCIS: There's two sides to this, I think. I mean, the research that we're doing suggests that we're going to see more persistent weather patterns. And this leads to some types of extreme weather events, things like, you know, the prolonged storminess they're having the U.K., and the long cold spell we've had in much of the U.S.

But other factors related to climate change are going to have other impacts on extreme weather, and we're already starting to see those, things like stronger heat waves and droughts. Of course, that's been a big story in our country for the last few years. And so people are starting to realize that climate change is not going to be this slow warming that we don't have to worry about till, you know, our grandchildren come along.

This is something that's happening now, and it's affecting people personally.

CHAKRABARTI: Well, Jennifer Francis is research professor at Rutgers Institute of Marine and Coastal Sciences. She was on the panel that presented new findings about changing jet stream patterns and extreme weather we've been seeing this winter. She presented that to the American Association for the Advancement of Science this weekend. Jennifer, thank you so much.

FRANCIS: You're very welcome. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.


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  • PoliticsWatcher

    The pro-carbon folks can’t be bothered to understand that global warming doesn’t warm every place every day.

  • loyal listener

    I would be more inclined to believe the “climate scientists” if they could use their computer models to predict things like this BEFORE they happen. Not just wait until after they happen and say, yep, our models say that was caused by global warming. NPR has some of the most biased coverage on this topic of any media outlet that I know if.

    • PoliticsWatcher

      They did predict this.

      But I’m not surprised that the conservative media didn’t tell you that.

      • andyk1985

        Predict what? Despite what she said, extreme weather is not on the increase. Except in the minds of those with egos so gigantic that they believe that their lifetime is the some total of human history.

        • S David H de Lorge

          Some total of knowledge, that sum total.

        • N_Jessen

          I don’t know what specific paper(s) you’re referring to here and below. But I’ve read material since the AR4 that establishes early trends (and it is early, given thermal inertia and the slower feedbacks) in things like heat waves, ratio of record highs to lows, and precipitation. And basic physics would suggest that macro-level trends must have a cause, regardless of whether they occurred in recent decades or in prehistory (when other forcings were dominant, but not necessarily as rapid).

          It may be more difficult to establish trends for some things at a global scale because not all regions have robust records for such events. But there are apparently still standing examples of large scale change in the literature:
          http://www.skepticalscience.com/print.php?r=100
          The final AR5 should be interesting too, but hardly the last word on the details.

          • andyk1985

            Here is a consolidation of information from the EPA and NOAA, as well as several other places that monitor weather trends. HE assembled this from disparate sources specifically because of the stupid claims of increasing extreme weather that are being made without actually looking at the data. Note that he sources EPA and NOAA and others, none of the data comes from him.

            http://wattsupwiththat.com/reference-pages/us-weather-climate-pages/us-climatic-history/

          • N_Jessen

            This is restricted to the U.S., and some of those graphs don’t seem otherwise very relevant to global climate (like intraday regional precipitation variance and graphs covering non-climatic timescales). There is also not enough robust U.S. data for all aspects of climate to say how they would otherwise behave in the absence of an overall global warming trend. Even the research of Dr. Francis (et al.) is considered relatively new and preliminary because of the limited data thus far. And although some want to conclude that because there were warm events (and at least a period of greater drought ‘frequency’) in early 20th century America, that must mean there’s no nascent anthropogenic influence today, that would be less than scientific. It doesn’t mean that in the future we won’t get weather patterns on steroids as those natural regional factors align with (mostly oceanic) heat accumulation from the amplified greenhouse effect.

          • andyk1985

            Except that the so called scientists are claiming that the extreme weather is already happening even though the available evidence says it is not. And what oceanic heat accumulation? The measured oceanic heat increase is actually within the error factor of the instruments used to do the measurements. About 1/1000 of a degree. And what amplified green house effect? the one that is sending average temperatures downward?

          • N_Jessen

            Source? Let me guess, another WUWT interpretation? I’d say this is a fairly robust trend (and it does takes a lot of energy to alter the huge thermal mass of the oceans by even a fraction of a degree):
            http://www.nodc.noaa.gov/OC5/3M_HEAT_CONTENT/heat_content2000m.png
            And I wouldn’t call a slight hiatus in ‘surface’ temperatures, particularly when under-representing the Arctic (as some datasets do), “downward”.

          • andyk1985

            You do know that the ocean data prior to 20 years ago is practically non-existent right? It was limited to the well travelled sea lanes. And the numbers for this have actually been flat the last 10 years, that is for the half the time we have had a good instrumental record? And that so called heat content measurement prior to 20 years ago is used to disguise the fact that the instruments they used werent actually accurate enough to get those measurements? and neither was the ocean coverage sufficient to make a claim within more than 4 or 5 degrees? So that the ocean heat content number probably has an error range covering better than half the graph?

          • N_Jessen

            Sorry, I don’t trust you, or Watts, to determine the utility of a particular analysis, given that (correct me if I’m wrong) neither one of you is a research scientist in this area. But even over the past 20 years OHC changes appear to have accelerated.

          • Larry

            Did that data come from the same scientist that got caught cheating, as in UN?

          • andyk1985

            And finally, the CAGW crowd would do much better to retrench and produce good studies rather than the scattershot of terrible, easily disproven studies they are using to try and claim the 17 year pause is expected. They know the pause is unexpected, and they dont know why. Of course it could be that they have been getting their crappy science published for so long in the journals they have completely forgotten how to do good science, if they ever knew
            .

          • Hari Georgeson

            The pause is in Atmospheric temperatures. One does not rely on just one metric to determine the state of a system, especially a system that is covered 70% by water.

            If you look at the radiation budget of the earth, there has been no pause. We have been in a radiation postive state, not neutral, not negative but positive…. and that is observational evidence measured on the ground and confirmed by sat data.

          • N_Jessen

            Nobody said in any detail what was “expected”, did they? It’s well known that the models aren’t very skillful at tracking ‘internal’ energy flows or predicting all their effects at the surface. But ocean-atmosphere heat exchange does vary, as do sulfate loads and to a lesser extent average solar irradiance. Collectively those have produced several fluctuations in surface temperature:
            http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/graphs_v3/Fig.A2.gif

            There is research backing this up, and perhaps you can point me to any rebuttals by actual published researchers (not just former TV weathermen turned bloggers):

            http://skepticalscience.com/A-Looming-Climate-Shift-Will-Ocean-Heat-Come-Back-to-Haunt-us.html

            http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2013/09/what-ocean-heating-reveals-about-global-warming/

    • S David H de Lorge

      You’re saying that if they can’t predict the weather next June 1st right now, they can’t be trusted to predict the broad patterns of which climate is constituted. Predicting specific events is a much different thing than predicting patterns of events.

      You can predict, to some degree, the average stats for a known athlete over the coming season. You cannot predict his stats for today’s game.

      • Matthew Leeds

        In a similar vein you can predict that his stats will decline over time on account of age increase, and may not even be able to predict his stats this season. I like your analogy and am going to use it alongside my own addition.

        • S David H de Lorge

          Thanks.

    • N_Jessen

      “Climate” scientists (vs. meteorologists) generally use models that are best at estimating trends over multi-decade periods, not weekly or seasonal forecasts (or even the inter-decadal fluctuations in surface temperature related to the oceans). And last I checked there was no model saying any individual event is “caused” by global warming, since weather events are a confluence of the overall trends and regional dynamics. All they can typically discuss is the degree of influence, via things like large scale circulation patterns and more water vapor being available for concentration in storms.

      • andyk1985

        You are right that there is no model saying such a thing. That is one reason the idea of claiming an event is caused by climate change is so ridiculous. With regard to trends, at what point is there a trend? Is 10 years enough? 15? 20? Several climate scientists said a 15 year trend would be significant, but now that we have reached a 15 year pause in warming they are no longer claiming that. The 15 year trend has the models wrong on both the magnitude and sign of the predicted warming.

        • N_Jessen

          I think Thirty plus years is generally agreed upon as a climatic period, since that tends to average out most of the extraneous variability/”noise” related to things other than the planet’s “energy budget”. You probably won’t find many scientific analyses of anomalies using base periods of less than that if it can be avoided.

  • andyk1985

    I never cease to be amazed at the ignorance of experts. Yet again the claim that climate change is causing more extreme weather. Yet we go look at the IPCC report, and we see that the IPCC withdrew that claim. Then we go look at the noaa.gov website, and we see the trends in extreme weather. Guess what, there is no trend in extreme weather. Its not increasing, its not decreasing. Its roughly the same since 1850. Thats for heat waves, cold waves, blizzards, floods, hurricanes, tornadoes, and droughts. So once again we have a so called expert on the show that is evidently not bright enough to do the basic research required to verify her claims. Or does she think she does not have to compare theories with measurements? Which would imply another scientist that does not know how the scientific method works.

    • S David H de Lorge

      What specific factors have been identified as effecting the appearance of the trend over the past fifteen years? That is, what exceptional but well known weather patterns have occured which effect the overall statistical climate measures? Heck, don’t stop there; make it since 1985.

    • Hari Georgeson

      Seems the insurance industry tends to disagree with you, and agree with the ignorant experts:

      “The study was prepared in order to support underwriters and
      clients in North America, the world’s largest insurance and reinsurance
      market. Using its NatCatSERVICE – with more than 30,000 records the most comprehensive loss data base for natural catastrophes – Munich Re
      analyzes the frequency and loss trends of different perils from an insurance perspective. The North American continent is exposed to every type of hazardous weather peril – tropical cyclone, thunderstorm, winter storm, tornado, wildfire, drought and flood. One reason for this is that there is no mountain range running east to west that separates hot from cold air.

      Nowhere in the world is the rising number of natural catastrophes more evident than in North America. The study shows a nearly quintupled number of weather-related loss events in North America for the past three decades, compared with an increase factor of 4 in Asia, 2.5 in Africa, 2 in Europe and 1.5 in South America. Anthropogenic climate change is believed to contribute to this trend, though it influences various perils in different ways. Climate change particularly affects formation of heat-waves, droughts, intense precipitation events, and in the long run most probably also tropical cyclone intensity. The view that weather extremes are becoming more frequent and intense in various regions due to global warming is in keeping with current scientific findings, as set out in the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) as well as in the special report on weather extremes and disasters (SREX).

      http://www.munichre.com/en/media_relations/press_releases/2012/2012_10_17_press_release.aspx

      • andyk1985

        This is an old discussion. You should do your research first. The science clearly shows that there is no trend in events. There is a trend of more people living in areas prone to hurricane and flood loss, etc. But that is not a trend in actual events. Rates go up because more people live in loss prone areas, not because there are more events. Unless you are claiming the insurance industry, which will use any excuse to raise rates, knows more than NOAA, which has published rather clear records on the lack of trends.

        • Hari Georgeson

          I guess you didn’t read the report they update and address those ‘old’ myths – insurance companies are notorious for being extremely conservative and wary of trends:

          “Up to now, however, the increasing losses caused by weather related natural catastrophes have been primarily driven by socio-economic factors, such as population growth, urban sprawl and increasing wealth.

          Among many other risk insights the study now provides new evidence for the emerging impact of climate change. For thunderstorm-related losses the analysis reveals increasing volatility and a significant long-term upward trend in the normalized figures over the last 40 years. These figures have been adjusted to account for factors such as increasing values, population growth and inflation.

          A detailed analysis of the time series indicates that the observed changes closely match the pattern of change in meteorological conditions necessary for the formation of large thunderstorm cells. Thus it is quite probable that changing climate conditions are the drivers. The
          climatic changes detected are in line with the modelled changes due to human-made climate change.”

          And about NOAA:
          “New analyses find evidence of human-caused climate change in half of the 12 extreme weather and climate events analyzed from 2012 ”
          http://www.noaanews.noaa.gov/stories2013/20130905-extremeweatherandclimateevents.html

          • andyk1985

            Nice fiction. So we would have had a major decrease in extreme weather events without CO2? Since the last two years have been average or below for extreme weather events. Do I have to point out logical fallacies of that? NOAA is desperate to justify that climate change money they are getting so they have to make up fake studies to prove climate change is happening. Their own studies show no trend, but they claim half of the events were caused by climate change. That is the same thing as saying without climate change there would be a decrease. That is nonsensical on its face.

          • Hari Georgeson

            You ignore basic physics. The problem we have is a radiative imbalance. More energy is being retained in our system. When you put more energy into a system you increase entropy…. meaning things get extreme, in lay terms. That goes for any system.

            To believe that we are immune from the laws of physics is fiction. Providing political answers to explain your narative rather than investigate the basic research is fiction:

            ” Overall, 18 different research teams from around the
            world contributed to the peer-reviewed report that examined the causes of 12 extreme events that occurred on five continents and in the Arctic during 2012. Scientists from NOAA served as three of the four lead editors on the report.”

            18 different research teams from around the world? Global conspiracy? Do you have stock with ALCOA?

          • andyk1985

            No., but I would be interested to know how many contributors worked on the IPCC report or received money from Greenpeace, the NRDC, WWF, or other groups who have made climate change a cause celebre, or from national governments that provide money for climate change research.

            With regard to the claimed imbalance, the measurement is .6 w/m2 with an uncertainty of 17 w/m2. In other words they have no idea if there is an imbalance or not.

          • Hari Georgeson

            “0.6 w/m2 with an uncertainty of 17 w/m2″

            No, it’s not, but I would be interested in knowing where that data came from….. and as to your speculation on the contributers and their association with IPCC or other groups, I’m sure that data is public and you can look it up instead of speculating.

            “an energy flux imbalance of 3.5 W/m2 has been created by anthropogenic emissions of greenhouse gases since 1850.”

            Measurements of the Radiative Surface Forcing of Climate
            W.F.J. Evans, North West Research Associates, Bellevue, WA; and E. Puckrin

            ftp://ftp.orbit.nesdis.noaa.gov/pub/smcd/spb/lzhou/AMS86/PREPRINTS/PDFS/100737.pdf

          • andyk1985

            Really? Claiming a measure to a tenth of a watt dating back to 1850? Do I have to point out the obvious fallibility of such a claim? What is the claimed uncertainty range? 20 w/m2?

          • Hari Georgeson

            From your response you indicate that you didn’t even read the report. You have no interest in anything but resides in the blogosphere…”wattsupwiththat”, the leading source of misinformation and actual psuedoscience on the net.

          • Larry

            And your such the scientist. tell you what, since you believe all of that, HAHA, data, I have some land I will sell you, It’s not a big thing, but some times some of the land is out of the water, but you know that just a little data. What do you say, is it a deal?

          • N_Jessen

            You seem to be quite the conspiracy theorist. But you’d need to come up with an awful lot of solid evidence to establish that all the world’s major scientific institutes are churning out massive volumes of “fake” research, and somehow getting it past thousands of tenured scientists. And the fact that you refer to a period of “two years” (even if global), as if that means much in climatology when (again) there are shorter-term variables superimposed on the trends, is nonsensical. No climate scientist worth his or her salt would claim that surface temperature is expected to precisely track accumulating CO2. And they never have.

          • andyk1985

            Try reading the comment I was responding to. In the comment the poster claimed tht 6 of 12 events in 2012 and 2013 could be traced to climate change. I merely pointed out the obvious logical fallacy of such a claim.

          • N_Jessen

            Okay, maybe I’m a little slow today, but I still don’t see the glaring logical fallacy. Although I think trying to tease out the relative influences on particular events is emerging science, I’m not convinced you’re comparing apples to apples (including incidence vs. magnitude or intensity). You’d need to cite which specific NOAA graphs are inconsistent with the finding that GW played a role in those events. Even at the surface, there is still extra heat vs. the longer term context, but obviously the distribution of that heat will vary, and not all of it’s effects will remain localized.

          • andyk1985

            The logic problem is. They claim that 6 of the 12 they looked at were caused or affected by climate change. Thats 50%. However, both 2012 and 2013 were normal from a weather perspective, with if anything a downhill trend in temperature. The logical result of their claim is that without climate change, those years would have been substantially below normal with regards to extreme weather. In other words, the claim is that there is a downhill trend in extreme events, that climate change is preventing. That makes no logical sense and would be impossible to prove.

          • N_Jessen

            I don’t know what’s meant by “normal from a weather perspective”. They’re talking about some pretty specific events, in different parts of the world, being affected by extra heat already in the system. At least according to NASA (which assesses the Arctic more broadly), 2012 and 2013 both had warm anomalies, slightly greater than in 2011. But in terms of precipitation activity, regionally wider swings between wet and dry wouldn’t necessarily translate to fast changing averages. Nor mean that regional effects can’t be inverse to near-term global temperature fluctuation (e.g., stronger warming years can produce drier conditions in one area and heavy precip in another).

          • Larry

            I agree, they are justifying their existence. How else would Obama be able to convince you that we need to shut down the coal fired generators. The equals to 40% of the electricity produced in the US. Maybe you should turn off your incoming electricity in preparation of coming events. NO lights or heat, need electricity to run your gas furnace. Sure will want some of that global warming, don’t you think?.

    • Verifiable Truth Matters

      You’re buying into the GOP-BIG OIL “Disinformation Campaign” started in 1988, accelerated since 2007 by KOCH INDUSTRIES, the $100 BILLION dollar Oil Conglomerate, who stands to make another $100 Billion just from the processing of tar sands at their refinery in Texas to add to the $115 BILLION they made in 2013. If the IPCC, a conservative body in which their must be 100% agreement for something to get entered into their reports, actually did withdraw the claim of severe weather it’s because someone objected. James Hansen, top climatologist did the calculations and ran a counter report to the IPCC report saying that a 2 degree C increase will be catastrophic, because he added in all the factors that the IPCC decided not include. He included them, because they will have consequence.

      There’s already been HUNDREDS of BILLIONS in damages in the last 5 years, which will be TRILLIONS by 2020. TENS of MILLIONS of People have been killed, murdered really, from sea level rise, severe weather events, and especially from food crop failures which have shoved over 500 million people into starvation. That number will be reaching HUNDREDS of MILLIONS by 2020. The planet on a a trajectory to become uninhabitable, people under 50 will no longer have a future as GOP-BIG OIL continue with MASS MURDER. Over 250 pages of documentation have been sent to numerous FBI offices in the cities most vulnerable, which will lead to thousands of pages of documentation and hopefully INDICTMENTS for: 1) MASS MURDER of tens of millions since 2010 a number that will be hundreds of millions by 2020, 2) Crimes Against Humanity since GOP-BIG OIL are destabilizing the jet stream because of the melting of the Arctic, the atmosphere which is creating stronger storms, the food and water supply, and have a half dozen horrific accelerations in motion that put the planet over a permanent, irreversible cliff 2015, 3) Breach of National Security since over 600 million people will migrate to find food and water. This has already started happening in Africa and 300,000 people in Bangladesh have been displaced, as they lose 1/3 of their country. The water is 5 feet high in buildings on the Maldives Islands and many other island chains are at risk.

      GOP-BIG OIL are engaged in a “Disinformation Campaign” started in 1988, ramped up since 2007 by Koch Industries front group, Americans for Prosperity. Koch has created numerous Right Wing Think Tanks and poured hundreds of millions of dollars into them, so they would produce fraudulent studies. PBS, Frontline produced a documentary called, “Climate of Doubt” about how Americans For Prosperity are handling the “Disinformation Campaign”, since 2007, using the same tactics that BIG TOBACCO tried to use. Eric Pooley wrote “The Climate War”, Ross Gelbspan wrote two books on this “Disinformation Campaign” titled, “The Heat Is On” and “Boiling Point”. Humans have less than a decade to stop the horrific accelerations underway as GOP-BIG OIL continue with MASS MURDER, since we will reach a 2 degree C increase by 2025 or slightly more than a decade.

      After 30 years of lies about the physics that governs this planet, aka the Greenhouse Effect, there is now a horrific DAMAGE REPORT. The Oceans are 30% more acidic and we’re only at .8 degree C increase. The atmosphere is 5% wetter which destabilizes it, creating more severe storms. This will continue to increase. 40% of the Arctic has melted in the last 3 decades when most of the temp increase has taken place. This creates less temp differential between the Arctic and the equator, is causing the jet stream to get weaker so it’s “wobbling” creating deep ridges and troughs. Hence Alaska has had 60 degree temps in the middle of winter while Arctic vortexes have repeatedly slid south damaging crops, causing the drought in California, causing the subzero temps throughout the Midwest, and the wettest winter ever recorded in Great Britain. There’s already HUNDREDS of BILLIONS in damage in the last 5 years worldwide, including 80% of the U.S. counties which have seen some kind of climate disaster from two massive wildfires in Colorado, to hurricanes like Irene, Issac, Sandy, Bopha, and Haiyan. Sandy killed 150 people and cost $68 BILLION as it hit NY city and New Jersey. Bopha was the 18th severe weather event to hit the Philippines killing over 1000, leaving over a million homeless. Haiyan killed over 6500, 2000 people are still missing, and left over 2 million homeless. it was the strongest hurricane ever recorded and the 25th severe weather event to hit the Philippines in 2013. It’s because the waters around the Philippines are 8 degrees warmer. The DAMAGE REPORT just goes on and on and on and on and on from massive flooding in Pakistan, India, Australia, Great Britain, to out-of-control wildfires–300 in Russia in 2011 after a decade of drought, to people who have already been displaced, to stronger hurricanes, to over 500 million people being starved because of a 40% wheat crop failure in Russia 2011-2013 followed by a massive failure of soy and corn in 2013 in the U.S. these crop failures drove up food prices by 40-45%. You need to do your homework. PBS, NPR have done dozens of reports on all these aspects since NPR, Science Friday issued a report at the end of January 2011 on ocean acidification. The oceans reach up and grab 30% of the acidity out of the atmosphere from the carbon dioxide. they also reach up and grab 94% of the heat out of the atmosphere, hence increased melting of the glaciers documented by James Balog in “Chasing Ice” now out on DVD. PBS, NOVA produced “Secrets Beneath the Ice” on the melting of Antarctica which will raise sea level by 35 feet by 2050. The Sept 2013 issue of National Geographic had a 7 page report. We’re currently at 400 parts per million of pollution in the atmosphere on a very steep climb. When we reach 1000 parts per million all of the ice will have melted and sea level rise will be 215 feet. Climate models indicate that we’ll be at 700-900 parts per million by 2100 or well on the way for sea level rise to be 200 feet. DO YOUR HOMEWORK, STOP BUYING INTO THE GOP-BIG OIL”DISINFORMATION CAMPAIGN” OR BECOME RESPONSIBLE FOR MASS MURDER!!!

      • andyk1985

        Do you really believe? Anyone with a brain knows that the only groups putting hundreds of millions into this debate are the alarmists from NRDC, Greenpeace, WWF, etc.

        • Hari Georgeson

          The unbelievable part of this whole ‘debate’ is that while climate change is being ‘denied’, the impact man has on the planet is far greater than just the climate alone….. so much so, that geologists and scientists in other fields have come to recognize that we have entered a new Geologic period…. the Holocene has ended and we have entered the ‘Anthropocene’.

          The force of human endeavors rival and surpass natural forces. Just the one shale oil mine in Athabasca Canada will remove more sediment than all of the earths rivers will in one year. Our global energy demand for one year is in the range of all the tectonic energy generated in one year by earthquakes, volcanoes, mountain building and the movement of earths plates. Add to it, our atmospheric changes, our changing of the nitrogen cycle, nuclear waste that lingers on geologic time scales, species extinction and much, much more.

          Here is an easy to read article from National Geographic that sums up what is and has happened. I hope you read it and begin to understand:

          Enter the Anthropocene—Age of Man
          http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/2011/03/age-of-man/kolbert-text

          It’s about time everyone takes their heads out of the sand.

  • S David H de Lorge

    For each of these stories on the exceptionally southern snowy winter here, analyzing it by reference to the drooping polar vortex and jet stream, why is there not a corresponding story about the exceptionally warm winter conditions at the Olympics?

    Sochi has been described in some of this programming as “sub-tropical” because “there are palm trees there.” There are palm trees in San Francisco too, but it’s way north of the tropics. As with the city of Sochi, its weather is moderated by its presence on a large body of water which stays relatively warm. Sochi is farther north than San Francisco (or New York, for that matter). (Look at the latitude lines ons your map.)

    Sochi’s mountains are northerly in the temperate zone. Like the rest of Russia, they have had typically cold snowy winters. Yet they are skiing now on slushy snow.

    When you look at the N. Pole, visualize the vortex of wind around it, drooping cold into the US. Now look on the opposite side of the N. Pole. Russia is there. Is its side of the polar vortex doing the opposite of drooping? Why doesn’t this story accompany news analysis of snowy South Carolina?

    • Skeptic

      I was taught in school that there used to be an Ice Age and that Ice blanketed North America. Did climate change effect that? Sure it did. Did humans cause that? I don’t think so.

      While cruising down the inside passage of Alaska there was information circulated about the fact that not too long ago we could not have been enjoying our trip as the inside passage was totally iced over. They also said it became navigable in the 1700s. Climate change? Sure. Can we blame it on humans? If we do I think we have to blame it on whale oil, not petroleum products.

      Is there climate change? Sure. But think for yourself a bit and you decide if your car adds much to the problem. Or Al Gore and his airplane for that matter.

      • S David H de Lorge

        If you say so.

  • Buttle

    Most if not all of the climate change deniers below are on salary from conservative and energy company image control outfits. The scientific consensus on climate change is stronger than the consensus that cigarette smoking causes cancer. I am a conservative and eventually when things become so clear, it looks very contrived to see these commenters, with their concisely presented talking points, coming out of the wood work for a piece like this. You guys are even very good flacks. Don’t believe them or me, look for yourself.

    Here is a link to that radical bunch of nutcases, NASA:

    “Ninety-seven percent of climate scientists agree that climate-warming
    trends over the past century are very likely due to human activities, and
    most of the leading scientific organizations worldwide have issued
    public statements endorsing this position. The following is a partial
    list of these organizations, along with links to their published
    statements and a selection of related resources.”

    Here is the link: http://climate.nasa.gov/scientific-consensus

    SCIENCE ACADEMIES
    U.S. National Academy of Sciences
    American Association for the Advancement of Science
    American Chemical Society
    American Geophysical Union
    American Medical Association
    American Meteorological Society (i.e., the weather people, not climate people)
    American Physical Society
    The Geological Society of America

    Here are more:
    http://opr.ca.gov/s_listoforganizations.php

    The earth is changing dramatically and Jesus is coming back.

    • andyk1985

      Its kind of ironic that you accuse ‘deniers’ of being on salary of energy companies, which is provably false, while quoting people whose grants are dependent upon them proving that humans are causing dangerous climate change. You are engaging in what is called the ‘big lie’, accusing the innocent of engaging in the practice of which the accusers are actually guilty.

      • Hari Georgeson

        No one forces a researcher as to what to research. That all of the scientific fields are seeing the same thing, from groups around the world, who don’t get their funding from the same organizations, or the same governments- be they democratic or communist….. should put an end to the lie of colluding scientists interested in only keeping grants…… its a very weak argument.

        • N_Jessen

          Yes, it is. I’ve yet to see proof that there’s big money, particularly among tenured researchers, in perpetuating a somehow persistently corrupt worldwide body of evidence.

          • Larry

            Have you been sleeping for the past few years? Get ready for this announcement:
            THE UN AND THE WORLD WIDE SCIENTIST, INCLUDING IN THE UNITED STATES, GOT CAUGHT CHEATING AND LYING ABOUT GLOBAL WARMING. DOES THAT RING A BELL? SOUNDS LIKE A PRESISTENT CORRUPT WORLDWIDE BODY OF EVIDENCE, DON’T YOU THINK?

  • Larry

    As for the Co2 criers, scientist in name only, all are paid by the government, either directly or by government grants. So why wouldn’t they be making a lot of noise, if they did not, they would not have a job.
    Check out these facts. Some 40 years ago it was the coming of an ice age, I am still trying to warm up; then it was the ozone layer having holes in it, the sky is falling, holes went away, surprise!; now it is global warming, oh should I say climate change?, Oh , get ready for the joke, scientist HAHA, got caught lying and cheating about global warming; it is funny temperature has been going down for the last 17 years. Now who are the deniers? All the elitist need is to get deniers, you that believe all this, and they will continue to take your money and your lives.
    Do I believe in climate change? Sure I do, it is commonly called seasons. Sometimes they are cooler and sometimes they are warmer. And the sky is not falling.
    If you want to call me a denier, thank you because that means that I can still think for myself. Let me guess, I might be a couple of percentage points high, but those that have fallen for this current and probably previous panic; 99% do not believe that God is in control, and He will be the one that destroys this world. The real question is do you believe in Him and is He your Lord and Savior?

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