Did Climate Change Supersize Hurricane Sandy? | Mother Jones

Did Climate Change Supersize Hurricane Sandy? asks Chris Mooney in Mother Jones.

Look. We know there’s more moisture in the atmosphere because when you warm a gas it holds more vapor. So that means there’s more precipitation when a storm blows in. And we know the sea level is rising because when you heat water, it expands. More importantly, melting ice from Greenland is pouring incredible volumes of water into the northern Atlantic. This is all elementary physics. So for anyone to argue that Sandy isn’t at least in part a product of climate change is just plain silly.

More from Michael Mann

Now on CNN:

Imagine you are sitting in your office simply doing your job and a nasty e-mail pops into your inbox accusing you of being a fraud. You go online and find that some bloggers have written virulent posts about you. That night, you’re at home with your family watching the news and a talking head is lambasting you by name. Later, a powerful politician demands all your e-mails from your former employer.

It sounds surreal. But it all happened to …

Michael Mann.

in Michael Mann’s words

Michael Mann, co-author of the “hockey stick” visualization of the last millennium of global warming, has written a book about the trials of sticking to the science in an era when half the country is hostile to reality. Here’s the 10-minute synopsis, in the form of an interview:

The weatherfolk who never were

George Monbiot usually pays more attention to the climate than weather, but his recent interest in the latter should provide many hours of merriment, and not just in the UK;

This month, I questioned the credentials of the alternative weather forecasters used by the Daily Mail, the Express, the Telegraph and the Sun. I suggested that their qualifications were inadequate, their methods inscrutable and their results unreliable. I highlighted the work of these two companies: Exacta Weather and Positive Weather Solutions (PWS).

Now the story has become more interesting: do the people from Positive Weather Solutions, making its forecasts and quoted in news articles, exist?

US energy emissions flat for next 25 years

From the US Energy Information Adminstration’s latest thinking:

Total U.S. energy-related carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions remain below their 2005 level through 2035: Energy-related CO2 emissions grow by 3 percent from 2010 to 2035, reaching 5,806 million metric tons in 2035. They are more than 7 percent below their 2005 level in 2020 and do not return to the 2005 level of 5,996 million metric tons by the end of the projection period. Emissions per capita fall by an average of 1 percent per year from 2005 to 2035, as growth in demand for transportation fuels is moderated by higher energy prices and Federal fuel economy standards. Proposed fuel economy standards covering model years 2017 through 2025 that are not included in the Reference case would further reduce projected energy use and emissions. Electricity-related emissions are tempered by appliance and lighting efficiency standards, State renewable portfolio standard requirements, competitive natural gas prices that dampen coal use by electric generators, and implementation of the Cross-State Air Pollution Rule.

Two comments: First, if we can hold energy-related emissions steady for the next while without resorting to a carbon tax, cap-and-trade scheme or other legislative stick, imagine what could be done with the right tools.

Second, similar trends are not expected in China and India.

Worst argument ever

This sort of thing is what gives economics a bad name.

As soon as have settled down and have some time I will post a more reasoned response.

UPDATE: I can’t find the time to rebut so many ignorant statement. Brad Johnson has done some of the heavy lifting. But really, if this doesn’t make it clear how out of touch the authors is, I don’t know what will.

Recapping …

In its latest Greenhouse Gas report, the World Meteorological Organization reminds us again that what really sets Homo sapiens apart from the other animals is an unparalleled talent for procrastination. Brad Johnson of Think Progress summarizes:

… since the global convention in Rio de Janeiro in 1992 at which the nations of the world pledged to prevent dangerous global warming, the intensity of global warming has increased by nearly a third. Most of the increase in pollution has come from the burning of fossil fuels, reaping untold profits for oil and coal magnates at the expense of civilization’s future. More than a quarter of all of the carbon pollution produced by the United States has come since then.

Which is why our grandkids will one day turn to us and say “Let’s me get this straight: you burned it all?”

A convert explains his return from the dark side

Barry Bickmore’s 40-minute explanation of why he stopped denying climate science is worth the time. As a a geochemistry professor, it should come as no surprise that he eventually came around, only that it took as long. But better late than never. He teaches at Brigham Young University in Utah, is an active Mormon, and an active Republican. So there you go.