Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Extreme Weather Tabulation for Early 2007

The most informative and persuasive book I've yet read about climate change and the risks we face is Hell and High Water by Joe Romm. Joe blogs at Climate Progress, one of my favorite feeds and sources for factual information about the effects of human-produced carbon emissions on our environment. So, read the book and bookmark Joe's blog.

I'm pointing to his latest article here because it does a great job of presenting the essentials of a just-released report by the World Meteorological Organization that confirms what the news stream has implied - records for different kinds of extreme weather were broken all over the place in the first four months of this year. Other news reports since April have noted more examples of unprecedented rain, flooding, drought and major storms landing in new locations.

What this should say to people who understand risk aversion is that the models for human-influenced global warming are proving to be valid, that the impacts can no longer be regarded as might happen or even gonna happen. They are happening and where they will happen next is the most important uncertainty. A population roughly the size of California's (36 million) has been rendered homeless or displaced by flooding over the past 3 months.

The task is huge and tricky, but it's time for more public consideration of contingency planning.
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This story has made it to the top of CNN's newsfeed. Good.

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