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Wednesday, March 21, 2012

500 Days Of Summer: Get Used To It, Says ABC News, Thanks to Global Warming. But NBC Is Still Out In The Cold

How hot is it? It is so hot that the low temperature for the normally frigid International Falls only hit 60 °F yesterday, which tied the previous record high for the date!  Meteorologist Dr. Jeff Masters wrote he’s never seen that happen station with a century-long data record. Monday was “the seventh consecutive day that International Falls broke or tied a daily record.”
How hot is it? Seasoned meteorologists have said of the current super-charged heat wave, “it’s surreal” and “this is not the atmosphere I grew up with” and it’s “not just breaking but obliterating records” and “OFF THE SCALE WEIRD; even for Minnesota.”
How hot is it? ABC ran a story on extreme weather that linked it to global warming for the second time in 12 days — see “ABC News (3/7/12) Explains Warm Winter, ‘Wild Swings In Weather’, Driven by Global Warming, Only Going to Get Worse.” Here is last night’s story, which quotes Masters and NOAA on global warming:
Like a baseball player on steroids, our climate system is breaking records at an unnatural pace. As Weather Channel meteorologist Stu Ostro says of the current heat wave, “there is a high probability that global warming is having an influence upon its extremity.”
Of all the kinds of extreme weather linked to global warming, the most obvious — the extreme events that climate scientists and the scientific literature have said for decades is the most inevitable — are longer and stronger and geographically bigger heat waves.
But somehow this is lost on NBC.  Brian William opened the evening news with a 3:48-long story, noting this is ”the strangest season many folks can remember,” which has set “thousands of new records.”
Williams says “it has confused plants and animals and a good many humans.” That apparently includes the folks at NBC, whose meteorologist asks “has the weather lost its cool?” and then asks “what is causing these extremes?” and answers, “it’s the jet stream”:
The really worrisome part is what ABC News hints at in its story. We’ve warmed only about a degree and a half Fahrenheit in the past century.  We are on track to warm five times times that or more this century (see M.I.T. doubles its 2095 warming projection to 10 °F — with 866 ppm and Arctic warming of 20 °F ).
In short, we ain’t seen nothing yet!
Related post: 

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Scientists like Sir John Sulston and the Royal Society’s People and the Planet Working Group have good work to do that is best accomplished by being uncompromisingly honest in the reporting of their research as well as by being unambiguously objective and forthcoming in reporting their findings with regard to the research of others. When honesty and effectiveness are viewed in opposition to one another, honesty must prevail over effectiveness in science. Finding a balance between them is not sufficient. Sacrificing honesty in order to maintain professional effectiveness is inadequate.

With regard to the science of human population dynamics, intellectual honesty appears not to have prevailed over professional effectiveness. That convenient rationalizations in support of effectiveness have been deployed by too many experts who have refused to be fully honest and open about such a vital matter of concern, seem somehow not right. Science is not compatible either with less than the ‘whole truth’, according the lights and best available empirical data we possess, or with the collective avoidance by professionals of research regarding what could be real. Science is an expression of truth, is it not? There can be no room for compromise between honesty and effectiveness where science is concerned.

If faith in the goodness of science is ever lost, then I fear the future of children everywhere, life as we know it, and Earth as a fit place for habitation by coming generations, that we think we are preserving and protecting in our time, could be ruined utterly. Somehow the honesty of science must come to prevail over professional effectiveness and the pernicious silence of too many of ‘the brightest and the best’ on one hand and the specious, intellectually dishonest, deceitful, cascading, ideologically-driven chatter of clever ‘talking heads’, overly educated sycophants or other minions in the mainstream media who selfishly serve the primary interests of self dealing masters of the universe among us on the other.

There is nothing ever insignificant to be gained from science and nothing trivial about truth. This is especially so with regard to science that indicates: human population numbers are a function of food availability (not, definitely not, the other way around) and human population dynamics is essentially similar to the population dynamics of other species. From my perspective, the science tells us something vital about ourselves, our distinctly human creatureliness and our ‘placement’ as the top ranking creature among the living beings on Earth. For all the miraculous and occasionally unique attributes of the human species, the research shows us that the human species is not, definitely not, most adequately or accurately placed “a little lower than angels” in the order of living things. Although such an attractively elevated and self-aggrandizing position for the human species sets human beings apart from other species, this view appears to be a widely shared, consensually validated and culturally-prescribed illusion. Rather human beings are assuredly situated within all that is living on Earth. Homo sapiens is an organism that is an integral part of the natural world, not apart from it. We see science once again ‘cutting’ from under us ‘the pedestal’ upon which we believe stand as we oversee, steward and dominate life on Earth.

Steve Salmony