Tuesday, May 24, 2011

The Climate Change Bogeyman

In this latest screed, A Link Between Climate Change and Joplin Tornadoes? Never! Bill McKibben stands on the corner with his sandwich board, loudly proclaiming the coming climate Rapture.

Yes, climate change is occurring. As it always has done.

Tornadoes are a result COOLING, not warming. A warm climate does not produce tornadoes and severe thunderstorms. They're caused by the interaction of COLD air masses with warm, moist air masses. The tornadoes and severe weather on the continental US are the result of cooler than normal ocean temperatures.

Droughts, thunderstorms, precipitation, snowfall, have always fluctuated on their own cycles; the interaction of these cycles produces patterns of weather we call climate. There has always been severe weather events everywhere over the earth.

Now, with ubiquitous communications and a paucity of education, we shout that things are different than they used to be, that now the climate is more “severe,” getting worse, causing more damage. These shoutings are usually self-serving, designed to sell books, advance a political agenda, or gather funds for one's technocratic department. One only has to look at the record to see that nothing is changed, climate variation is occurring just as it has throughout the history of mankind.

Unfortunately, Bill McKibben has taken on the role of corner-shouter, mindlessly repeating prophecies of doom and gloom.

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