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?, (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.