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Evidence of climate change

Apologies for the extended absence, but there was a death in the family which absorbed my time for the middle and end of last week.. family comes before blogging.

Anyhow, to start off the new (and short) work week, I caught an article from Dr Jeff Masters over at The Weather Underground. In this article, he comments that since 2010, things seems to have gotten very extreme, weather-wise:

Every year extraordinary weather events rock the Earth. Records that have stood centuries are broken. Great floods, droughts, and storms affect millions of people, and truly exceptional weather events unprecedented in human history may occur. But the wild roller-coaster ride of incredible weather events during 2010, in my mind, makes that year the planet’s most extraordinary year for extreme weather since reliable global upper-air data began in the late 1940s. Never in my 30 years as a meteorologist have I witnessed a year like 2010–the astonishing number of weather disasters and unprecedented wild swings in Earth’s atmospheric circulation were like nothing I’ve seen

Some of those events include: Earth’s hottest year on record, most extreme winter Arctic atmospheric circulation on record, which resulted in “Snowmageddon”, Arctic sea ice had the lowest volume on record, Record ice melting in Greenland, the 2nd most extreme shift from El Niño to La Niña, the 2nd worst coral bleaching year of the coral reefs, the wettest year over land, the Amazon rainforest experienced its 2nd 100-year drought in 5 years, the global tropical cyclone activity was the lowest on record, but of that activity, the Atlantic hurricane season had the 3rd busiest on record (behind 2005); there was a rare tropical storm in the South Atlantic, the strongest storm in Southwestern U.S. history was recorded, as was the strongest non-coastal storm in U.S. history; the weakest and latest-ending East Asian monsoon on record, the Russian heat wave and drought happened, which was the deadliest heat wave in human history, and on and on, which I won’t list here, but it’s quite a list, and I encourage you to read the facts and figures that occurred with each one.

Dr Masters goes on to say that examining past weather records, it is possible that the 2010 period was the most extreme weather period since 1816. His conclusion of why this occurred?

The pace of extreme weather events has remained remarkably high during 2011, giving rise to the question–is the “Global Weirding” of 2010 and 2011 the new normal? Has human-caused climate change destabilized the climate, bringing these extreme, unprecedented weather events? Any one of the extreme weather events of 2010 or 2011 could have occurred naturally sometime during the past 1,000 years. But it is highly improbable that the remarkable extreme weather events of 2010 and 2011 could have all happened in such a short period of time without some powerful climate-altering force at work. The best science we have right now maintains that human-caused emissions of heat-trapping gases like CO2 are the most likely cause of such a climate-altering force… I’ll leave you with a quote from Dr. Ricky Rood’s climate change blog, in his recent post,Changing the Conversation: Extreme Weather and Climate: “Given that greenhouse gases are well known to hold energy close to the Earth, those who deny a human-caused impact on weather need to pose a viable mechanism of how the Earth can hold in more energy and the weather not be changed. Think about it.”


1 comment to Evidence of climate change

  • The frightening thing about the possibility of climate change is that with every new discovery that negative changes to climate are indeed accelerating, the more vociferous the denying from the right. The refusal to even consider the science and growing evidence of actual incidences is becoming epidemic. I ventured onto a right blog because the title involving the lack of sunspot activity sounded like it might discuss the issue rationally. Instead, the post and comments were merely excuses to insult scientists and mock those who even entertain the validity of environmental study. My point is that the world is going to have to suffer far more major physical setbacks due to warming before politicians and industry take it seriously.

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