Environment


cartoon-tornado-008

Water, water everywhere,

Nor any drop to drink.

— Samuel Taylor Coleridge, The Rime of the Ancient Mariner

 

Tornado Outbreaks Could Have a Climate Change Assist, Climate Central, Aug. 5, 2014:

[A] study released Wednesday posits that changes in heat and moisture content in the atmosphere, brought on by a warming world, could be playing a role in making tornado outbreaks more common and severe in the U.S.

Tornadoes, Extreme Weather And Climate Change, Climate Progress, Apr. 28, 2014:

[A] September 2013 study from Stanford, “Robust increases in severe thunderstorm environments in response to greenhouse forcing,” points to “a possible increase in the number of days supportive of tornadic storms.”

Does global warming cause more hurricanes and tornadoes?, ARM.gov (your tax dollars at work):

[A]ccording to those studies, we should expect a greater frequency of very destructive hurricanes and tornados. Because the intense storms are most likely to produce tornados, then we could expect more tornados.

And yet . . . U.S. tornado numbers among lowest in recorded history in 2014 (Washington Post, Dec. 10, 2014)

It’s the great depression for tornado activity in the U.S.

. . .

2014 joins 2012 and 2013 as very inactive years for tornadoes. “When adjusted for report inflation through November, the last three years in a row have fallen well below the mean,” Carbin says.

Oh, and, The Online Tornado FAQ, NOAA Storm Prediction Center (your other tax dollars at work):

Does “global warming” cause tornadoes? No. Thunderstorms do. The harder question may be, “How will climate change influence tornado occurrence?” The best answer is: We don’t know.

North America getting its polar vortex on. (NASA)

In a post about how very badly NOAA did not predict our frigid winter, the Washington Post’s excellent Capital Weather Gang concludes:

The bottom line is that – irrespective of the source – seasonal forecasting is a relatively young, immature science and should be viewed with some skepticism.

Let me translate for those of you unfamiliar with climatologist speak:  “Much past 10 days out and we have no idea what the Hell is going on.

Given the incredible complexity of interrelated feedback loops, both positive and negative, it takes a special kind of hubris to think that one can predict what our climate will be doing a century from now.

To paraphrase George Monbiot:

There is not enough oil.  We are all going to die!

. . . oh, wait . . .

There is too much oil.  We are all going to die!

It must be really depressing being an environmental alarmist.  No matter what happens, you have a compelling need to see it as a dire threat to the very existence of humanity.

As one would expect, Mr. Monbiot fails to note that much of the United State’s newly found energy wealth is in the form of natural gas, and as a result, “total [U.S] CO2 emissions this year are on track to drop to the lowest level since 1991.”

It's always darkest just before it goes pitch black.

If you were wondering where all the Puritanical guilt went as our society become more secularized, I think the environmental movement has found it for us.

This day we frack!

This is borderline sacrilege . . . but funny none the less.

As Aragorn might have put it if he was in the oil business, “A day may come when the hydrocarbon supply of men fails, when we forsake our internal combustion engines and break all pipelines and refineries, but it is not this day. An hour of woes and solar cells, when the age of oil comes crashing down! But it is not this day! This day we frack! By all that you hold dear on this good Earth, I bid you drill, Men of the West!”

— Walter Russell Mead, Global Warming in the Golden Age of Oil

Mozambique’s new energy reserves may not be pretty or clean, but they have two advantages that trump everything else: they are lucrative, and, unlike the unicorns that the global climate movement insists will descend from the Misty Mountains any minute and solve all our problems while saving us money, they are real.

Walter Russel Meed, Via Meadia

This timelapse compilation is incredible.  Be sure and watch it at full screen.

Landscapes: Volume Two from Dustin Farrell on Vimeo.

Now I am homesick.

(HT Gizmodo)

(HT Dennis Gartman via Carpe Diem)

Facts are not good or bad; they are correct or incorrect. And a policy based on hysterical refusal to consider all possible facts is neither good, nor correct.

— Megan McArdle, Climate Science Shouldn’t Be Religion for Left or Right

Another in Britain’s proud science fiction tradition.

Mass migration northwards to new towns in Scotland, Wales and northeast England may be needed to cope with climate change and water shortages in the South East, according to an apocalyptic vision set out by the Government Office for Science.

. . .

The vision is published today in a report entitled Land Use Futures: Making the Most of Land in the 21st Century. John Beddington, the Government’s chief scientific adviser [science fiction writer], who directed the research, said that climate change and the growing population would present Britain with difficult choices about how it used its land.

. . .

The report, compiled by 300 scientists, economists and planners, includes three scenarios to “stimulate thought” and “highlight difficult policy dilemmas that government and other actors may need to consider in the future”.

All the scenarios involve dramatic changes in lifestyles and landscapes in response to climate change. In the most extreme scenario, world leaders hold an emergency summit in 2014 when it becomes clear that the impacts of climate change are going to be far worse and happen much sooner than previously envisaged.

The Government responds by taking control of vast tracts of land and using it to grow wood and crops for biomass power stations. An agricultural productivity Bill requires farmers to increase yields per hectare but most have to sell up because they lack the resources to comply. “The average farm size in the UK increases from 57 hectares to 500 hectares; farms in the East and South East of England increase to 5,000 hectares.”

The report says that satellite images in 2060 would reveal dramatic changes in the countryside. “The landscape is mottled with wind turbines; the patches in the patchwork are bigger; there are more forests and fewer animals; there are fewer vehicles moving along the roads.”

In another scenario, the Government redefines land as a national resource and the rights of landowners are balanced with “society’s rights to public benefits from the services produced by it”. Home ownership falls as people begin to embrace the idea of “stewardship” of shared natural resources.

“People are more interested in leasing or sharing goods and less interested in consumption that threatens sustainability of supply. The UK makes a significant cultural shift away from meeting present desires and towards protecting the needs of future generations.”

The report concludes that failure to manage land in a co-ordinated way could result in severe shortages of resources and “public goods” such as water, wildlife and urban green space.

Professor Beddington said: “Over the next 50 years we cannot manage land in the way we’ve done. We’ve got too many competing issues, so much change going on, and we need to get much smarter about how we manage land as we go on.”

I hope they make a movie.

Oxfordshire 2010

Oxfordshire 2050 -- It is amazing what 40 years can do!

(Via the Englishman)

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