Dirty energy makes dirty weather
For those of us who care about climate change, the relationship between global warming and Hurricane Sandy is clear. And the science backs this up: rising ocean surface temperatures, and the impacts of cold water from the melting Arctic ice working together to create what’s being called a Frankenstorm.
This is a very readable article about the climate change causes of Sandy: http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2012/10/29-0
And of course its not just Sandy that’s been hitting the US hard this year – record droughts and fires have not only devastated the landscape but also pushed up food prices. And not suprisingly direct impact has meant record levels of support in the United States for action on climate change.
As someone working on climate change issues, people have said to me many times that its only when climate change starts affecting us directly will we be galvanised into action. Until then no-one will want to make the necessary changes. I was always dubious about this idea – to be the impacts of climate change were obvious to anyone who did want to have their head in the sand.
But these polls from the United States speak for themselves. After the events of this year, three quarters of people from the United States now think that action on climate change is necessary. This is even though political leaders rarely speak about the issue and the popular media like Fox News gets reporting on climate science wrong 93% of the time.
So lets hope that Sandy has put climate change back on the agenda for the upcoming Presidential elections. Far from being expedient or insensitive, drawing about the links between global warming and the climate chaos in the United States is the only ethical, and responsible, option.
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