Free Markets, Free People

Blaming Typhoon Haiyan on climate change – no surprise there

First, let me say my heart goes out to the people of the Philippines. This was a horrific and very deadly event. And I can even understand their representative to the UN letting emotion carry the day when he said before the UN:

“What my country is going through as a result of this extreme climate event is madness.

“We can fix this. We can stop this madness. Right now, right here.

Well, emotion aside, no we can’t. As Bjorn Lomborg has said any number of times, the cost of doing what those who want to “stop this madness” want done would literally end life as we know it, ruin economies and yield, at best, marginal results. Or said another way, we can’t afford their desired programs and even if we could, they wouldn’t have much effect.

Then there is the reality of the day. Right now, for instance, carbon emissions in the US are at 1994 levels (and have dropped in most places around the globe due to the downturn in the global economy). Then there’s the inconvenient fact that warming around the globe has paused for ten years and some climate scientists say it may stay paused for another 2o years. And your guess is likely as good as theirs as to what the climate will do then. Oh, and arctic ice?  Back with a vengeance.  It is hard, in the middle of possible 30 year pause in warming, to claim a single event has been caused by … warming. But someone always will.

Finally, look on this side of the globe. Hurricanes and tornadoes are down – a lot:

Summer is almost over, and as of Tuesday morning, not a single hurricane had formed this year. Tornado activity in 2013 is also down around record low levels, while heat waves are fewer and milder than last year, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Meteorologists credit luck, shifts in the high-altitude jet stream, African winds and dust.

So it is possible that the “local” weather, in this case “local” is a rather relative term, in our tropics was cooler than the weather in the tropical region of the Philippines.  Luck or the way the climate works?  Is that something man has control over? Or, is it something that an increasing number of scientists seem to be concluding – that various “local” climatic events have more say over our weather than does CO2?

Since I don’t accept the science is settled on this issue, I think we have a lot to still learn about our climate and how it works and what effects it. To this point, I’m not convinced that a single trace gas that, until recently science said was a lagging indicator of warming, is not the culprit that spawns super storms like Haiyan.


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13 Responses to Blaming Typhoon Haiyan on climate change – no surprise there

  • “…the culprit that spawns super storms like Haiyan.”

    The thing is that Haiyan is only a “super storm” because we have a world press calling it that.
    It could readily be that a Haiyan was a normal storm in the 12th Century.  We have no flucking idea.
    A bad storm does not need “spawning”.  It just needs a few variables to raise it above the “norm”.  And those will always exist, regardless of what stupid, vacant things we might try to make them go away.

    • Sandy was a ‘super storm’ when it wasn’t.
      People always wonder “why didn’t anyone build here, it’s so pretty!!!!”.
      Maybe they did, maybe the ocean swept it away, maybe the survivors learned from that.
      Fact is we build in places our fore-fathers learned from bitter experience you shouldn’t.
      They may not have understood the mechanics, but they understood the results of plagues, fires, famines, floods, earthquakes and volcanoes.
      We figure because we have i-phones that shit should only occur in the Bible or some moldy old history course.
      Can’t happen here you see.
      Gaia can be an uncaring bitch.

  • I haven’t followed Jon Henke since he left this site.  But back then, I also had many “family” members buying wholly into AGW  My “family” is much more circumspect now; outrage at my denier status has been replaced by a begrudging and tacit acknowledgement that my AGW skepticism may have been, in fact, well founded.
    Of course, supplicants of faith-based ideology (or worse) don’t let facts and honest science get in the way of a good narrative.

    • Consider yourself fortunate bains – there remain a few branches on our family tree clinging desperately to AGW.  Funny though – not much mention about their health care premiums skyrocketing.  It’s one thing to believe in the distant ephemeral Gaia, but quite another to have one’s personal checking account lightened by The One’s signature policy.  Karma anybody?

    • A few years back, I had a relative who was sparsely employed and having trouble paying the bills.  He was extolling the virtues of the various “green” road blocks to “dirty” energy which were going to force us to shift to “clean” energy.  I thought to myself: ‘Yes, but how will you pay for a utility bill that’s triple what you pay now?‘  He voted for Obama again, so there was not much point arguing with him.

  • Sachs wasn’t just saying that energy policy has to be changed either. He thinks that people responsible for opposing “green” energy plans are guilty whenever someone dies from a natural disaster. Sachs tweeted on Nov. 10 that “Climate liars like Rupert Murdoch & Koch Brothers have more & more blood on their hands as climate disasters claim lives across the world.”

    Tell you what…
    Lil’ Sachs can be…should be…sentenced to live in a cave as a hunter-gatherer.  Next word he hear from him should written in charcoal on an animal skin.
    All that relief and aid the world is ready to ship to the victims?  Leave it on the docks until the sailing ships arrive to carry it.  Stop all that nasty fuel for the heavy equipment and generators on the islands.  Let them use mules and kerosine.  Refrigeration?  They don’t need no steeenking refrigeration.  They all have “blood on their hands”, after all.

    • All that relief and aid the world is ready to ship to the victims?  Leave it on the docks until the sailing ships arrive to carry it.  Stop all that nasty fuel for the heavy equipment and generators on the islands.  Let them use mules and kerosine.

      I’m not that harsh rags, but the sentiment is shared.  I’m learning, vis-a-vis Obamacare that the best way to turn Democrat family is to point out not just the failures of said policy, but subtly question the underlying premises.
      e.g.  Socialized medicine?  Sure it works great in the military, but realize that scaling it from 1.5mil to 332mil will require that those served will also be subject similar austerity and regulations.

  • Project Veritas Video: CAUGHT ON TAPE: Obamacare Navigators Counsel Applicants to “Lie”

  • The problem with these “superstorms” is that they hit regions that:
    – Are geographically prone to flooding (low-laying islands, a city in a bowl below sea level, or a city located basically at the cross-section of the coastline and a long island)
    – Are not very built up and the sturdiest infrastructures are not too strong at best.
    Now yes, a storm w/ 200MPH and 10 foot storm surge would’ve hurt anything. But that’s been the exception rather than the rule. We take so much storm damage for the most part purely to human folly.

  • Off-topic, but….
    As a public service, should we mount a suicide watch for the Maven Of Moosesqueeze Tech?

    Q Poll finds Millennial have more confidence in GOP Congress-critters that Pres. ScamWOW.

    • Scottywhimpers – Stephen King’s latest novel about a small town in Maine gripped by inexplicable occurrences.
      Every evening now the citizens of MooseSqueeze hear eerie howling after sunset, and in the morning find traces of strange, animal like clawing on the vending machines that sell the New York Times.    Faculty working late at the University of Moose report faint glimpses of a hunched scuttling figure prowling around the physics building, a feeling of being watched, and strange moaning and shrieks from outside their windows when they open web pages that relate to ObamaCare.