Global Warming Alarmism Meets a Blizzard of Reality

In a bit of irony lost on big media, the government, on the eve of winter and during a slew of recent snowstorms, released a doomsday report on global warming. As reported in the New York Times,

A major scientific report issued by 13 federal agencies on Friday presents the starkest warnings to date of the consequences of climate change for the United States, predicting that if significant steps are not taken to rein in global warming, the damage will knock as much as 10 percent off the size of the American economy by century’s end.

Electing Democrats could do far more damage to the US economy in a much shorter time span, but don’t expect the NY Times to discuss that. One only has to go back in time eight years, when Democrats controlled Congress and the White House, passing Obamacare, and flatlining the US economy.

The NY Times then blames everything on climate change.

But in direct language, the 1,656-page assessment lays out the devastating effects of a changing climate on the economy, health and environment, including record wildfires in California, crop failures in the Midwest and crumbling infrastructure in the South. Going forward, American exports and supply chains could be disrupted, agricultural yields could fall to 1980s levels by midcentury and fire season could spread to the Southeast, the report finds.

Are the California wildfires due to climate change? Or government mismanagement and ineptitude? Certainly, hot and dry weather may have contributed to the fires, but such weather is nothing new for California. Even the California Governor acknowledges his government’s role in fire prevention.

Months ago, California Gov. Jerry Brown urged state lawmakers to loosen restrictive logging regulations put in place to appease environmentalists -- a move that appears to have confirmed that President Trump's recent critiques of state logging practices was correct.

The climate assessment is based on computer models, attempting to predict events 50 to 100 years in the future. Recall the spaghetti line plots predicting hurricane tracks, each line based on a computer model, dozens of such lines sending the hurricane north, south, straight ahead, or harmlessly out to sea. If computer modeling were easy and accurate, only one line would be needed, reflecting the model that correctly predicts the hurricane track. And these predictions are for a week into the future, not a century.

This climate assessment originated in Congress. “The Global Change Research Act of 1990 mandates that the U.S. Global Change Research Program (USGCRP) deliver a report to Congress and the President no less than every four years.” Why not a similar economic assessment for other initiatives such as a carbon tax, Medicare-for-all, raising taxes on “the rich”, or continued open borders and amnesty for illegals?

Or as the Heartland Institute describes the report,

“This latest climate report is just more of the same – except for even greater exaggeration, worse science, and added interference in the political process by unelected, self-serving bureaucrats,” Tim Huelskamp, president of the Heartland Institute said in statements released by the free-market think tank following the report’s release.

The irony of such a climate report on the eve of winter is the observable weather around us, not projections for the end of the century. None of the authors of the climate assessment will be around at the end of the century to gloat over the accuracy of their economic forecast, or to explain how wrong they were. In fact, these predictions may quickly be forgotten.

Does anyone remember Walter Cronkite’s 1972 predictions of a “new ice age”? Without the internet, few would remember either Walter or his prognostications. And he is not around to explain how his prediction turned out. In fact, here is a list of failed climate predictions that no one in the media today cares to review and analyze why they were so off the mark.

That won’t stop Hollywood celebrities from tweeting about the upcoming frying of Planet Earth from their air-conditioned mansions or private jets. Rather than predictions, what’s the word on the street? Let’s see some of that global warming.

Kansas City experienced its earliest snowfall ever this past October. Thanksgiving weekend, Kansas City received 4 inches of snow. “Kansas City has not experienced a 3-inch snowfall since February 2014.”

Further east in New York City, “Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade is coldest parade on record.” Has a panel been convened on CNN or MSNBC to explain how this could occur in the face of catastrophic global warming? Don’t hold your breath. If anything, they will find some “climate scientist” to twist himself into a pretzel explaining how such cold and snow is evidence of global warming.

My own observations are similar, having spent Thanksgiving weekend in Vail. The famous back bowls, over 3000 acres of rugged and exposed terrain, typically do not open early in the season due to lack of snow and abundant sun exposure. Their opening date is a good measure of seasonal  snowfall and cold temperatures.

This year, they opened on saturday of Thanksgiving weekend. The last such early opening was in 2014. In 2012, the back bowls didn’t open until mid-January.  In 2015, opening day was in early December. Last year opening was also mid-January.

“Locals' consensus is that it's a good season if the back bowls are open by Christmas.” So, opening this year at Thanksgiving is an exceptional season, with cold and snow. Enough to close some the Colorado mountain passes.

Those flying home after Thanksgiving could have used a bit of global warming. Instead as USA Today reported, “Airline passengers faced delays and cancellations across the Midwest on Sunday, one of the busiest travel days of the year.” Over a thousand flights cancelled and close to 5000 flights delayed.

Why? Too much heat? Not quite. “Most of those came in the Midwest, where a winter storm was bringing snow, ice and rain to a swath of the Great Plains and Midwest. Blizzard conditions were possible Sunday across parts of Iowa, Illinois, Missouri and Wisconsin.”

Some winters are warmer, some are colder. Some snowier and others drier. The only real climate change is cyclical changes based on ocean currents and sunspot activity. If the planet were warming as much as the doomsayers are predicting, why are we seeing so much cold and snow?

Predictions are nothing more than educated guesses. Unfortunately, there are policy and economic implications to such predictions including carbon taxes, curtailed energy exploration, environmental regulations, and increased costs of virtually any type of business.

Those making such bold predictions and proclamations, which cannot be verified in a practical time frame, with no track record of previous predictions coming true, should temper their certitude. As the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change admits, “The climate system is a coupled non-linear chaotic system, and therefore the long-term prediction of future climate states is not possible.”

Reality, including winter storms, serves as a reminder of the folly of turning science into political propaganda.

Image credit: Pixabay

Brian C Joondeph, MD, MPS, a Denver based physician and writer. Follow him on Facebook,  LinkedIn and Twitter.

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