Thursday, February 07, 2019

Hmm, Five for Five. Is There a Message Here?

The five hottest years on record have been the last five years on record. Five for five. What's that mean to you?

NASA scientists confirmed in a report Wednesday that 2018 was one of the hottest years on record, continuing what the New York Times called "an unmistakable warming trend." 
Last year was the fourth-warmest on record since scientists began recording such data 140 years ago, according to NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS). This finding makes the last five years the five hottest years ever, scientists said, slapping down any question that the planet is growing warmer. 
"2018 is yet again an extremely warm year on top of a long-term global warming trend," said GISS director Gavin Schmidt in a statement. 
"The five warmest years have, in fact, been the last five years," he told the Times. "We're no longer talking about a situation where global warming is something in the future. It's here. It's now."
And what about the next five years, our next climate five-pack? Surely there's a cooling break here somewhere. No, sorry. The next five years are supposed to be hotter, record breaking hotter.
NASA and NOAA climate scientists said even though 2018 was a tad cooler than the three previous years that’s mostly due to random weather variations. 
“Never mind the little wiggles from year to year. The trend is going relentlessly up, and it will continue to do so,” Potsdam Institute climate scientist Stefan Rahmstorf said in an email. “Those who live in denial of this fact are in denial of physics.”
Using computer simulations, the British weather office forecast s that the next five years will average somewhere between 58.51 and 59.49 degrees (14.73 to 15.27 Celsius). That would be warmer than the last four years.

But, but, but... we've got billions of barrels of bitumen in the ground and "no country would just leave them there." Five for five. You wanna go ten for ten?

He's done some good things but, when it comes to climate change and Canada's environment, the prime minister is an eco-poseur. Today's column from Michael Harris looks at Justin Trudeau's unconvincing treatment of our Atlantic and Pacific coasts.
Does the Prime Minister really care about the environment, as he always claims? Or is he just “genuinely insincere,” as Ottawa Life Magazine recently put it? Not an unimportant query, with this fall’s general election just eight months away.
By the way, a bit of introspection. I will try to stop going on about "your new normal" when writing about climate change. There is no new normal, only your new normal for now - until there's more change, and then that will become your new normal for a while. It's all very fleeting, you see.

Five for five.


bcwaterboy said...

Unfortunately with all the lazy thinking about climate change going on in the higher order of leadership, all it will take is one cool year to be subjected to all the "told you so" blather. That'll probably be 2020 the year of Trump's likely 2nd term. Then by 2024 its off to the races to the point of no return.

The Mound of Sound said...

Hi, BCW. I would be delighted with another "cool" year if only because I've read nothing to suggest there'll be one. There's too much greenhouse gas in the atmosphere, too much water vapour in the atmosphere and way too much heat in the ocean, especially the ocean depths, and no sign of any return of snow and sea ice to the Arctic to see where that cooling effect might come from. It's all physics at this point.

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