Thursday, April 28, 2011

More wake-up calls from Mother Nature

There was an interesting article on the DailyKos website yesterday about Earth's climate. It was published before the latest and most devastating round of tornadoes that hit the South, killing (at last count) more than 200 people, injuring many more and virtually destroying some small towns. The timing of the publication thus proved ironic.

The article talks about the warnings that have been given repeatedly by climate scientists over the last 30 years or so about what we can expect from global climate change, especially if we continue to refuse to acknowledge our part in it and take steps to reverse some of the damage we have done. The bottom line is that we can expect to see a dramatic increase in extreme weather - storms, droughts, floods, extended heat waves. The planet's normal climate regulators, such as polar ice caps and the troposphere, are being overcome, damaged and even destroyed by Earth's unnatural warming, with disastrous results.

One always has to acknowledge the caveat that it is impossible to link any one weather event to the phenomenon of global warming, but it is difficult for a layperson like myself to view the extreme weather events occurring around the country (and the world) in recent months as anything other than one more wake-up call from Mother Nature, as she tries, like any good mother, to turn us aside from our road to destruction. Will we begin to heed her warnings?

Meanwhile, there is, unfortunately, a political sidebar to the tragedies in the South. The Republican budget recently passed by the Republican House of Representatives and voted for, as far as I know, by every single Republican representative in the South, strips the money from programs meant to address climate change and guts the budgets of federal disaster recovery programs, FEMA, and the National Weather Service. In this, they have shown their usual foresightedness.

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