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Climate Change

Published on September 2nd, 2019 | by Steve Hanley

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Climate Scientists Say Climate Change Will Lead To More Powerful Storms, & Hurricane Dorian Proves They’re Right

September 2nd, 2019 by  


There is a tale about a man trapped by rising flood waters. As he is standing on his porch watching the waters rise, a canoeist comes by and offers him a ride to safety. “No thanks,” he says. “My Lord will save me.” An hour later, he is on the second floor of his house as the water creeps up the stairs. A person in a rowboat knocks on the window and offers him a ride to safety. “No thanks,” he says. “My Lord will save me.” An hour later, he is on his roof, clinging to the chimney when a helicopter comes by and offers him a ride to safety. “No thanks,” he says. “My Lord will save me. “

A few minutes later, the man drowns. As he is ready to enter heaven, he meets God and berates him. “I believed in you my entire life. I lived a good life according to your teachings. I did everything you asked and you let me drown!” God responds, “I sent you a canoe, a row boat, and a helicopter. What more did you expect of me? There is much I can do, but you have to do some of the work yourself.”

Climate scientists have been telling us for a decade or more that climate change will lead to more frequent, more powerful storms. They also say such storms will occur further north than usual. As of this writing, Hurricane Dorian is the most powerful storm to ever occur in the Atlantic east of Florida and north of the Caribbean, according to a report by the Washington Post.

The rate at which Dorian intensified is also unprecedented. “In a space of just nine hours on Sunday, its peak winds increased from about 150 mph (130 knots) to 185 mph (160 knots) — a rate of intensification never before observed for a storm this strong,” says the Washington Post. The National Hurricane Center said on Saturday that gust of up to 220 mph had been recorded inside the storm.

Trump Goes Golfing

The alleged leader of the free world had a busy weekend. He abruptly cancelled a scheduled visit to Poland, ostensibly so he could be personally involved in directing relief operations if the storm slammed into Florida. But after forecasters said Dorian would turn north and stay out to sea, he helicoptered over (at taxpayer expense) to play golf at one of his many country clubs. Mar-A-Lago was safe. That’s where his concerns about storm damage ended.

But before he left, he tweeted one of his patently absurd messages, assuring people that Alabama was safe from the devastating effects of the storm. He also said he had never heard of a Category 5 storm, even though he has he mentioned them several times in the past.

Well, actually, the prez did in fact refer to Category 5 storms several times in recent years. Perhaps his brain is so addled, he can’t remember what he had for breakfast anymore.

Twitter user Wayne Schneider had the best response to The Donald — a short, pithy statement filled with factual information that anyone with more than a 4th grade education could understand in an instant.

“And do you know WHY it’s one of the largest hurricanes ever? The same reason 5 of the last 35 Cat 5 hurricanes we’ve had over the past 169 years were in the last four years. Humans are pumping HUGE amounts of CO2 into air. It sinks and gets trapped in the oceans making them warmer. Warm waters are energy to a storm, which is why the storms we’ve seen recently are bigger than usual. This will continue, Donald, for the foreseeable future. Under your rule, climate change damage will get worse unless you take action to mitigate its effects. Resign.”

Instead, the Jackass In Chief (with the world’s worst combover) is busy opening millions of acres of public land to logging, fracking, drilling, and coal mining so humanity can pump even more pollutants into the environment.

Oh, The Humanity!

You can almost hear God snickering at the perfidy of clueless humans. “I sent you Katrina, Irma, Maria, and Dorian. But you chose to ignore all the warning signs and plunged ahead making matters worse. Have you never heard the expression, ‘God helps those who help themselves?'”

We have all the information we need to act. That we decline to do so — out of ideology, theology, politics, or just plain old fashioned cussedness — is the ultimate flaw of humankind. We would rather destroy the only planet we will ever have than reign in our destructive tendencies. Thoughts and prayers won’t save us. Only sensible steps to dramatically lower our emissions will.

Does that mean an end to our extravagant lifestyle? Yes it does. By the time we figure it out, though, it will be far too late. It is unlikely extinction will prove to be an appealing alternative. The evangelical community may go to bed each night praying for the End Times to come soon so they can experience the Rapture personally, but the rest of us might prefer our children to inherit a sustainable world.

For one reason or another, America now has the dumbest, greediest, most self aggrandizing leader in its history. That hardly bodes well for its future. As the 2020 election season approaches, only one issue matters — who will lead down a path toward that sustainable future like a responsible adult instead of over an ecological cliff like an enraged 2-year-old with a full diaper? 
 
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About the Author

Steve writes about the interface between technology and sustainability from his home in Rhode Island and anywhere else the Singularity may lead him. His motto is, "Life is not measured by how many breaths we take but by the number of moments that take our breath away!" You can follow him on Google + and on Twitter.



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