Nice timing there, global warming researchers

I like the touch with the melting Earth, don't you?

I like the touch with the melting Earth, don’t you?

I had to smile this morning when I saw this story on the front page of The State, under the headline, “Climate change research: Southeast will swelter:

Poisoned seafood, scorched forests, flooded homes and crumbling bridges are just some of the problems the Southeast can expect as the earth’s climate changes and temperatures heat up in future decades, according to a study released Tuesday.

The 341-page report, based on the expertise of more than 100 scientists and researchers, is considered the most comprehensive study to date of how global warming is affecting the South – and what Southerners can expect…

I don’t know about you, but I was rather startled to learn, about 10 last night, that it was snowing outside in my yard. As also reported today in The State, under the headline, “Unusual November snow falls on Columbia.” And this morning, I almost, but not quite, wore my coat that I got for a winter trip to England three years ago, which I’ve only worn about twice since then. And when I got outside, I regretted that I had decided not to wear it.

Yeah, I know, the study’s about long-term trends, etc. But still, not great timing. Earlier in the day, it had been what? 70 or so? And then there were all those high winds as I was driving home last night, and behind them — snow.

It’s like somebody up there really didn’t like these researchers…

11 thoughts on “Nice timing there, global warming researchers

    1. Brad Warthen Post author

      But the study wasn’t about the Phillipines…

      It did occur to me to wonder, as the weather took that weird turn last night, whether this was a Butterfly Effect thing from the Phillipines.

      All the way home last night, I drove through great, confused swirls of dead leaves. I hadn’t even noticed that many trees had turned before that. It was like autumn and winter both arrived all at once, in a matter of hours…

  1. Karen Pearson

    It may help to think in terms of global climate change rather than “global warming.” While we are warming (and at an alarming rate) the result we see will be climate change. Thus, rather than just getting a little warmer, and warmer, which is scary enough when you consider that Columbia is inching toward tropical, what we will see is more instances of extreme weather–extended early cold, increased drought, storms increasing in number and ferocity. It’ll affect different areas in different ways. Places that are now desert may start to see abundant rainfall, and consequent flooding, and vice versa. If it markedly changes the pattern of water movement in the oceans, we’ll be in for some major shifts. So not to worry about a dusting of snow in November. Just rejoice that so far we’ve been spared worse, at least in these parts.

  2. Doug Ross

    There’s nothing that can realistically be done to reverse whatever my be causing climate change. Can we influence India and China to change their ways? Doubt it. Can we make small token efforts that make us feel better about ourselves? Sure. Do most people want to make any personal sacrifice that actually causes some discomfort? Nope.

    I’ll believe people like Al Gore are serious about climate change when they move into small homes powered by solar, wind and stop flying around in private jets. Driving a Prius doesn’t really make a difference.

    1. Kathryn Fenner

      My life with two dogs would be a lot easier with a larger house on a huge lot and a monster SUV, but the Prius and our plenty big house is a whole lot easier on the environment. Multiply that times….

      I can control what I do and try to influence others…

  3. Karen Pearson

    Doug, all we can do about anything we don’t like is to behave differently, and try to influence others to behave differently. Lots of countries are trying to reduce their carbon footprint. Meanwhile, I do what I can (and am not too selfish) to do. Kathryn, I couldn’t agree more!

    1. Doug Ross

      The level of change that would be required to undo decades of global actions that may have impacted the climate for the future is beyond anyone’s capability to alter at this point.

      Would you turn off you air conditioner for the summer? Stop travelling? Ride a bike instead of a car? How far are you willing to go? I can start taking thimblefuls of water from Lake Murray to start my own ocean… it would have the same chance of success.

      It would be better to prepare for the inevitable than to think there will be some massive global decision to make the drastic changes that would be required to make a difference. Whole economies and industries would have to be destroyed.

  4. Burl Burlingame

    It’s counterintuitive, but global “warming” creates more rain and snow. Putting all that moisture from the icecaps into the atmosphere has to come down somewhere.

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