The Year of Unceasing Rain #5

On average, 2010 seems to have been as hot as 2005, which was probably the hottest year ever recorded, according to NOAA :-

http://www.noaanews.noaa.gov/stories2011/20110112_globalstats.html

Whatever the other datasets show, 2010 was certainly one unusually warm year, definitely in the warmest. Yet what interests me more is that it was also the wettest.

Rain got dumped around the world, in large, emptying-the-bath type events. The heavens really opened. Sheets of rain fell suddenly out of the skies.

One report of serious rainfall and flooding (or storms and flooding) was followed by another, and another. It was subjectively a year of unceasing rain, even before the objective records were counted.

There was Central America of course. And parts of deep Europe. Then Pakistan, which nobody could have missed. There were major Typhoons causing untold havoc in East Asia. The Caribbean was not spared. Parts of the United States of America became swampland.

Even though the BBC have only just woken up to the fact that the East Coast of Australia is suffering unusually high levels of precipitation, torrential rain and flooding have been going on there for at least a month :-

http://www.smh.com.au/environment/weather/hundreds-cut-off-by-deadly-floods-20101208-18pxi.html

It’s so significant, it’s even got its own Wikipedia page :-

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2010%E2%80%932011_Queensland_floods

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-pacific-12173846

The BBC TV News anchormen and anchorwomen think that we can all breath a sigh of relief because the peak of the Brisbane flood wasn’t as bad as had been feared, but seriously, it’s laughable to try to find something positive about what’s happening.

Unfortunately, things could still continue to get worse, even in Brisbane.

Check the live satellite :-

Wake up, Ms and Mr BBC news correspondent ! This is a major, persisting crisis, and it’s not over yet.

The Year of Unceasing Rain (3)

September 2010 is beating records for daily rainfall in the United States of America :-

http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/extremes/records.php?ts=daily&elem=prcp&month=9&day=24&year=2010&sts=US&submitted=Get+Records#recs

It just won’t stop anywhere in the world, it seems :-

http://edition.cnn.com/2010/WORLD/asiapcf/09/22/skorea.flood.missing/index.html

http://www.france24.com/en/20100926-deadly-downpours-drench-central-america-caribbean

Paris is very rainy tonight (26 September 2010) :-

Remembering Pakistan

Found at : Only In It For The Gold

Will the long-term future for much of inundated Pakistan resemble a country-wide-scale New Orleans – destroyed and mostly deserted ?

Where will the people go ? Or will they rot and die in “temporary” camps ?

What will become of those stranded in their villages – they stayed to protect the land – they didn’t realise the floodwaters would be like never before – coming to take away their livelihoods and possibly their lives.

http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5jX_KetVCMo64AOZxSMudPWArFrJgD9I946KG0

“US envoy warns Pakistan of flood funding shortfall : By SEBASTIAN ABBOT (AP) : 16 September 2010 : KARACHI, Pakistan — The world will only be able to fund around 25 percent of the tens of billions of dollars needed to rebuild Pakistan after the floods, and its government will have to make up the shortfall, the U.S. envoy to the country warned Thursday. Richard Holbrooke said America would not condition its assistance to the country, but warned that the U.S. Congress might not be generous if it felt that Pakistan was not taxing its own citizens enough. Pakistan’s rich have traditionally not paid much tax on their income or their property — either because they evade them or are exempt — and the country’s collection rates are among the lowest in the world…Monsoon rains triggered massive floods six weeks ago that spread across the country and are still continuing in parts of the south. Some 8 million people have been made homeless in what Pakistani and U.N. officials have said is one of the largest humanitarian disasters in living memory…”

Hungry for Change

People often talk about the weather in relation to Climate Change, but neglect to talk about the possible obvious and inevitable side-effects – hunger and starvation.

Frontline Club will screen the film “The Hunger Season” on 1st October 2010, and follow it with a panel discussion hosted by BOND and Oxfam UK :-

http://frontlineclub.com/events/2010/10/liberation-season-screening—the-hunger-season.html?utm_source=Frontline&utm_campaign=074ce4510f-Announcing+October+events&utm_medium=email

“Across the world a massive food crisis is unfolding. 
Climate change, increasing consumption in China and India, the dash for Biofuels are causing hitherto unimagined food shortages and rocketing prices. This has already provoked unrest and violence from the Middle East to South America and there is no end in sight in the coming months. The people who are going to be most sorely affected are those already living on the razors edge of poverty, those dependent on food aid for their very survival. As commodity prices have risen by 50%, the UN Agencies have barely half the budget they need to meet the needs of 73 million hungry people they are currently feeding…”

Biofuel targets may not be the only factor behind food price rises :-

http://www.wdm.org.uk/food-speculation/great-hunger-lottery

“In The Great Hunger Lottery, the World Development Movement has compiled extensive evidence establishing the role of food commodity derivatives in destabilising and driving up food prices around the world. This in turn, has led to food prices becoming unaffordable for low-income families around the world, particularly in developing countries highly reliant on food imports. Nowhere was this more clearly seen than during the astonishing surge in staple food prices over the course of 2007-2008, when millions went hungry and food riots swept major cities around the world. The great hunger lottery shows how this alarming episode was fueled by the behaviour of financial speculators, and describes the terrible immediate impacts on vulnerable families around the world, as well as the long term damage to the fight against global poverty…”

Continue reading Hungry for Change

They Call It Precipitation…

…we call it unstoppable megadeath.

We always thought Bangladesh would be the first country for complete Climate catastrophe, but it seems that awful honour has gone to Pakistan instead.

The countries in South Asia need to share data on rainfall, river volumes and the like :-

http://www.amankiasha.com/articles_cat.asp?catId=1&id=96

http://www.hindu.com/2010/07/31/stories/2010073165890900.htm

http://www.alertnet.org/db/an_art/60167/2010/03/12-155822-1.htm

http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSLDE67B10D._CH_.2400

BBC Hedges

[ YouTube Credit : The link to the video above comes thanks to the endeavours of that most fair and balanced individual James “no net global warming since 1998” Delingpole. “No net global warming since 1998” ? James ! You’re quoting Pat Michaels, but did he perhaps make that up ? Or was it something that Christopher Monckton might have made up ? ]

The BBC puts the blame on Climate Change – almost – in a report on the Russian heatwave-wildfire disaster.

But they just can’t bring themselves to admit it as an organisation – and put the claims into the mouths of others – using quotation marks in the headline (‘partly to blame’) and ascribing the opinion to “researchers”, the “UK Met Office” and “experts” :-

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-10919460

“10 August 2010 : Climate change ‘partly to blame’ for sweltering Moscow : By Katia Moskvitch : Science reporter, BBC News : Global climate change is partly to blame for the abnormally hot and dry weather in Moscow, cloaked in a haze of smoke from wildfires, say researchers. The UK Met Office said there are likely to be more extreme high temperatures in the future. Experts from the environmental group WWF Russia have also linked climate change and hot weather to raging wildfires around the Russian capital. Meteorologists say severe conditions may linger for several more days…”

Well, I’ve got a bit of a question to pose – it might not be possible to ascribe the current weather conditions in Russia (and Pakistan and China and and and…) to Climate Change, statistically. I mean no one weather event can be said to have been caused 100% by Climate Change. But would these extreme weather events have happened without Climate Change ?

That is by far the most important question to ask, and Michael Tobis does just that :-

http://initforthegold.blogspot.com/2010/08/moscow-doesnt-believe-in-this.html

“…Are the current events in Russia “because of” “global warming”? To put the question in slightly more formal terms, are we now looking at something that is no longer a “loading the dice” situation but is a “this would, practically certainly, not have happened without human interference” situation? Can we phrase it more formally? “Is the average time between persistent anomalies on this scale anywhere on earth in the undisturbed holocene climate much greater than a human lifetime?” In other words, is this so weird we would NEVER expect to see it at all?…”

Continue reading BBC Hedges