Tag Archives: Global warming

Climate change will bring more storms

A report came to Texas Gov. Greg Abbott’s desk that delivers a stern message without actually saying the words it needs to say.

The Gulf Coast is going to experience more severe storms with increasing frequency, the report states. Why? Earth’s climate is changing. However, the report doesn’t use the words “climate change” to explain what is patently obvious.

Gov. Abbott won’t accept climate change as a contributing factor, but the report does contain some stern and dire warnings.

According to the Austin American-Statesman: “The enormous toll on individuals, businesses and public infrastructure should provide a wake-up call underlining the urgent need to ‘future proof’ the Gulf Coast — and indeed all of Texas — against future disasters,” according to “Eye of the Storm,’ the report released Thursday by . . . Abbott’s Commission to Rebuild Texas.”

But as the American-Statesman notes, “future proof” has become Abbott’s favorite term as it relates to what the state is experiencing.

Earlier reports note that storms as savage and sweeping as Hurricane Harvey are going to pound the coast with increasing frequency and savagery. Again, our climate is changing. Sea levels along the coast are rising. The rising levels put our fragile coastal wetlands in peril. Other reports note the shrinking Arctic and Antarctic ice caps that could cause sea levels to increase by more than four feet by 2100.

Also, according to the American-Statesman: “The current scientific consensus points to increasing amounts of intense rainfall coupled with the likelihood of more intense hurricanes,” the report states.

The president of the United States says climate change is a “hoax.” I believe he is wrong to say such a thing knowing that he is making a false declaration.

As for the Texas governor, it is long past time for him to climb aboard the climate change wagon. The evidence is there, even if a thorough report doesn’t say it in so many words.

As long as we’re talking about what we ‘believe’ . . .

Donald John Trump says he has read “some” of the much-discussed National Climate Assessment, says it is “fine,” but then adds quickly that he doesn’t “believe it.”

What doesn’t he believe? He doesn’t believe the projection from the government-ordered analysis of the impact of climate change on our economy. The Assessment projects a 10 percent decline in our Gross Domestic Product if we fail or refuse to do anything about climate change.

This report comes from the government. Donald Trump is the president of the United States. Connect the dots here. OK?

So, as long as we’re talking about what we “believe,” I happen to believe that Donald Trump shouldn’t be president of the United States. What’s more, I want to suggest that more people share my belief in his unfitness for public office than share Donald Trump’s belief as it regards the National Climate Assessment.

Trump buries report that disagrees with climate-change screed

Donald John Trump won’t admit this, but he doesn’t know anything about science. For that matter, neither do I. Thus, I am left to heed the analyses given by actual scientists, people trained to study things that go far above my level of understanding.

Climate change, for example.

The federal government itself has issued a report that says the hazards presented by Earth’s changing climate are going to accelerate. The National Climate Assessment is done by living, breathing experts on this stuff.

What’s the president’s response? He doesn’t believe them. He has buried the report because it disagrees with his own “belief” that climate change is a hoax. He’s said so repeatedly. He stands by his view about climate change. It’s made up. Fabricated. A product of “fake news.”

He tweets idiotic messages that take note of a cold spell and asks, “Where’s global warming?” As CNN’s Chris Cillizza has declaredA warming planet doesn’t mean there won’t be cold days. Or even cold weeks! Or months! It means that, in the long seep of history, the planet is getting hotter and hotter. And that those changes in the climate produce more wild and unpredictable weather events, like tornadoes and fires.

Scientific agencies such as, oh, NASA, take note of the evidence they have witnessed over time: ice caps are shrinking, sea levels are rising, Earth’s annual mean temperatures are increasing.

Humankind is burning too many fossil fuels that are spewing carbon gases into the air; we human beings are encroaching on natural habitat, level vast expanses of forest, taking down trees that replace carbon dioxide with oxygen.

The president doesn’t get it. He doesn’t understand what’s happening. He continues to repeat the lie that climate change is a hoax, that it’s not actually happening.

His own National Climate Assessment says the exact opposite.

Who do you believe, a politician/serial liar or the experts who study these matters intensely? I’m all in with the experts.

National Climate Assessment: Harvey wasn’t a one-time event

Get ready, my fellow Texans. It’s quite likely, according to the National Climate Assessment, that Hurricane Harvey wasn’t a one-time catastrophe; there might more of them perhaps in the near future.

Hurricane Harvey delivered in the late summer of 2017 a one-two punch never seen before along the Gulf Coast. It roared in as a monstrous hurricane at Corpus Christi and Rockport, delivering huge storm surges off the Gulf of Mexico along with heavy wind.

It backed out over the water, then meandered up the coast and came in — again! — as a tropical storm. The second hit delivered 50 inches of rain over Houston and the Golden Triangle, putting vast stretches of the upper Texas coast under water.

Well, the National Climate Assessment says we can expect more of the same, or perhaps even worse. Why? Earth’s climate is changing. And, yes, the assessment delivered by the federal government is in direct contradiction to the half-baked pronouncements delivered by the president of the United States, Donald John “Stable Genius” Trump.

Trump says climate change is a “hoax.” He doesn’t accept the scientific community’s findings about the changing climate and the warming of the planet.

What’s more, scientists are concluding that human activity is a significant contributor to these changes.

According to the Texas TribuneThe White House downplayed the findings of the report, saying in a statement that it was “largely based on the most extreme scenario.”

But the report makes a compelling case for the reality of disastrous climate change impacts — in large part because they are already occurring. The report highlights Hurricane Harvey, wildfires in California and other recent extreme weather events, describing them as consistent with what might be expected as the planet warms. It also details the crippling impact a multi-year drought had on Texas agriculture from 2010 to 2015, thanks not only to less direct rainfall but to the reduction of water released to farmers for irrigation.

Who are you going to believe, a politician — Trump — with no background in science, let alone public service or scientists who make their living studying and determining these things?

I’m going to stand with the scientists.

Climate change: dangers are everywhere and are mounting

Donald John Trump keeps reminding us of how smart he is, how he knows more than the experts about anything under the sun.

He calls climate a “hoax.” He says it’s not real. He blames the Chinese for igniting the rumor about the warming temperatures around Earth.

Along comes an assessment from a panel of actual experts, commissioned by the same federal government Trump was elected to lead that says something quite different. It’s chilling, if you’ll pardon the weird metaphor.

The National Climate Assessment says the following: “With continued growth in emissions at historic rates, annual losses in some economic sectors are projected to reach hundreds of billions of dollars by the end of the century — more than the current Gross Domestic Produce of many U.S. states.”

I want to add with emphasis that this comes from the federal government. It’s not a hunch or a “belief” or something pulled out of (polluted) thin air. It’s an analysis done by experts who get paid good money to tell us the truth about the state of our planet.

Will the president heed it? Will his allies in Congress take heed as well? Will the president’s 38-percent “base” believe a word of it? No, no and hell no.

The report said that “Future risks from climate change depend primarily on decisions made today.” That means, to me, that human beings who have contributed to this environmental cataclysm must now take ownership of the remedies we need to forestall what many believe is the inevitable destruction of the only planet we have.

The president took office and immediately began issuing executive orders rescinding environmental rules and regs enacted by his predecessors. He called them “job killers.” The consequences of this new hands-off policy have yet to be felt, but I believe they will be felt over time.

The very idea that the president of the United States would even deny the existence of a crisis that damn near every credible scientist on Earth says is happening is mind-boggling in the extreme. But this one does.

I am acutely aware that a report such as this might be tough to swallow given the bitter cold that has swept across the country. I simply urge us all to look at the bigger, global picture and assess the evidence that our average annual temperature worldwide is increasing; that increase is having a demonstrable impact on our fragile world.

Donald Trump doesn’t get it.

Yep, this guy scares the bejabbers out of me.

Trump sees the damage up close

Donald J. Trump took time to look up close at the damage fire has brought to California.

I am glad the president went to the fire-scarred ruins of Paradise, Calif.; I am glad Gov. Jerry Brown and Gov.-elect Gavin Newsom and Paradise Mayor Jody Jones were there to walk among the destruction with him.

I also am glad that the officials — from president to small-town mayor — are expressing hope that we’ll never see this kind of damage done again.

The hope, I fear, is futile. I fear for the worst, not necessarily in the communities already ravaged by the fire, but for others.

It boils down to two words … and they aren’t “forest management.” The two words are “climate change.”

The president keeps denying that the climate is changing. He calls it a “hoax.” He says it’s cooked up by China and that government’s efforts to undermine the U.S. fossil fuel industry.

I do not believe he is correct. I believe that climate change is delivering its wreckage in the form of these fires.

The management of the state forests should not be the concern of the president. The ongoing drought that continues to plague much of the Far West, the Mountain West, the High Plains and the Great Plains deserve the nation’s attention. By that I mean to infer the president’s attention.

These fires will continue to scorch the landscape likely for well past the foreseeable future. It might be too late at this juncture to curb them.

The president did the right thing today by touring the devastation brought by Mother Nature’s fire-borne fury. If only he would dial back his instinct to criticize his political foes and simply listen to the learned voices of those who keep warning us about the real dangers posed by Earth’s changing climate.

And heed their warnings that humankind contributes to it.

Climate change might get a fresh look in Congress

It occurs to me that with Democrats soon to be running the show in the U.S. House of Representatives, some critical issues that Republicans seem intent on ignoring well could get a fresh hearing on Capitol Hill.

Let’s look briefly at climate change, for example.

It used to be called “global warming,” but that term has given way to “climate change.”

Republicans comprise a lot of climate change deniers among their congressional ranks. One of them happens to be the president of the United States, Donald Trump, who has called climate change a “hoax,” a figment of Chinese government officials who want to undermine the U.S. fossil fuel industry.

I happen to disagree with that. I happen to believe that Earth’s climate is changing. How that even can be a topic of debate is utterly beyond me. The only debate ought to center on its cause: human activity or part of the global cycle.

Do you remember the time U.S. Sen. James Inhofe, R-Okla., during a serious cold snap in Washington, brought a snowball onto the Senate floor and used that snowball as proof that Earth’s temperature isn’t warming? That was the mother of idiotic stunts.

Here’s my hope: Democrats who will control House committees will be compelled to conduct hearings with experts who will tell us — as they have many times already — about the danger posed by the changing climate. Yes, we need to hear from these individuals that deforestation along with the spewing of carbon gas into the air are causing the ice caps to melt, depriving wildlife of their habitat. They need to remind us of the hazard of rising sea levels that could inundate coastal communities.

What about those storms that boil up out of the oceans and bring the destruction ashore, such as what we have seen with increasing frequency and ferocity in recent years? Must we just live with the inevitable wrath and fury and not do a single thing to counteract it? I believe that is the height of irresponsibility.

Democrats appear to be more inclined to fear the consequences of climate change. They do not control the flow of information in the Senate, but they do in the House.

Thus, one half of our legislative branch of government is in the hands of folks who give a damn about climate change and concur with the belief that Earth’s changing climate and its dire consequence pose a national security threat.

Yes, elections do have consequences.

‘Natural instinct’ is wrong, Mr. President

Donald John Trump says he has a “natural instinct” for science. Therefore, he is going to rely on that instinct rather than listen and study the analysis provided by actual scientists who contend that climate change is the real thing.

Moreover, most of them suggest that human beings are causing Earth’s climate to change, causing it to warm up, causing the oceans to rise, eliminating habitat for Arctic and Antarctic wildlife.

They say deforestation has contributed to it. They blame carbon emissions from factories and motor vehicles that pollute the atmosphere.

The president, though, says his “natural instinct” tells him they’re all wrong.

Donald Trump, per usual, is spewing absolute poppycock.

Trump has it wrong

Speaking of instincts, the president’s natural instinct in business hasn’t served him well. Bankruptcies and assorted failed endeavors have created — at best — a checkered business history for the man who calls himself  “self-made” gazillionaire. However, as The New York Times has reported, he isn’t self-made by any stretch of the imagination.

Now he’s going to tell us that his gut informs him that climate change isn’t real.

Mr. President? It is real. Honest. It is.

Beautiful view … if only we could see it

MISSOULA, Mont. — Our drive today from West Yellowstone to Missoula was spectacular — or at least that’s what I’ll presume.

We couldn’t see much of what we understand is breathtaking mountain splendor.

Our 260-mile trek north and west was uneventful in important ways. We had no delays. Our truck performed perfectly. Our fifth wheel recreational vehicle followed along just as it is designed to do.

The obstruction to our sight-seeing while driving comes from smoke. Those wildfires that keep breaking out throughout the western United States are causing considerable havoc to those of us who want to enjoy the splendor the Almighty provides.

Do not misunderstand me. I am not going to bitch and moan about it Why? My inconvenience pales in comparison to the struggle being fought in those mountains, valleys and meadows by the firefighters who are thrusting themselves into harm’s way.

Our latest retirement trek will continue west before we head back home in a few days. I keep hearing about the smoke all along the way. I want it to clear out for totally selfish reasons, but also because — like all Americans — I want the firefighters to return home safely. Their children and spouses need them.

I won’t go too deeply into the climate change debate with this blog post. I’ll only re-state what I’ve believed for a good while: The weather is changing and we can expect more of these fires and more than likely they’ll arrive with increasing ferocity.

Millions more tourists just like my wife and me will be denied the chance to take in the view we know is out there … somewhere.

Oh, this heat just keeps the pressure on

Just about the time I am inclined to link this incessant Texas heat wave to the issue of global warming, I think of Sen. Jim Inhofe, an Oklahoma Republican and prominent global warming/climate change denier.

We’re broiling in the D/FW Metroplex with temps hovering around 110 degrees (if you factor in that “heat index”). It’s been several days with temperatures topping out at around 100 degrees. I might say, “See, I told you that the climate is changing.”

Sen. Inhofe? Oh, he quite famously walked onto the floor of the U.S. Senate during a recent winter snowstorm in Washington, D.C. He was packing a snowball about the size of a large grapefruit. He then proceeded to declare in a Senate floor speech that the existence of that snowball and the bitterly cold temperatures in the D.C. area proved that the planet isn’t warming up.

I wrote at the time that Inhofe was nuts to use a real-time episode in one community as a way to debunk an event that scientists around the world have said is occurring.

Look at global picture, Sen. Inhofe

So, with that said, I am going to refrain from linking to this hideous heat to the notion that Earth’s climate is changing.

There. Are you climate change deniers happy now?