July 4, 2012 Leave a Comment
Climate Progress has a mini celebration that major media outlets are finally beginning to connect the wildfire-windstorm-drought dots and call it climate change. Kevin Trenberth, a senior scientist with the National Center for Atmospheric Research, talks with Judy Woodruff on The News Hour.
Even the Drudge Report featured this AP article by Seth Borenstein:
So far this year, more than 2.1 million acres have burned in wildfires, more than 113 million people in the U.S. were in areas under extreme heat advisories last Friday, two-thirds of the country is experiencing drought, and earlier in June, deluges flooded Minnesota and Florida.
“This is what global warming looks like at the regional or personal level,” said Jonathan Overpeck, professor of geosciences and atmospheric sciences at the University of Arizona. “The extra heat increases the odds of worse heat waves, droughts, storms and wildfire. This is certainly what I and many other climate scientists have been warning about.”
“What we’re seeing really is a window into what global warming really looks like,” said Princeton University geosciences and international affairs professor Michael Oppenheimer. “It looks like heat. It looks like fires. It looks like this kind of environmental disasters.”
Oppenheimer said that on Thursday. That was before the East Coast was hit with triple-digit temperatures and before a derecho — an unusually strong, long-lived and large straight-line wind storm — blew through Chicago to Washington. The storm and its aftermath killed more than 20 people and left millions without electricity. Experts say it had energy readings five times that of normal thunderstorms.
Then there’s this:
AND, Colorado has been burning up, which we have all been watching with suspended breath, while Russia, terrorized in 2010 by raging fires, is battling some 600 fires this month, which have already burned more acres in the east than those in the west two years ago.