Russian government sees harsh evidence of global warming

While the U.S. remains embroiled in a mind-boggling feud over whether climate change is real, Russia has warmed up to the scientific evidence. “Everyone is talking about climate change now,” President Dmitri A. Medvedev told the Russian Security Council this month. “Unfortunately, what is happening now in our central regions is evidence of this global climate change, because we have never in our history faced such weather conditions in the past.”

Russia’s leaders have usually played the role of obstructionists in global talks about climate change because they thought that combatting it would harm their economic growth (where have we heard that before?) and because they believed that they would benefit from a warming planet. The vast stretch of frozen-over Siberia, they believed, would turn into a pleasant region of moderate temperature, ripe for agriculture and development.
But this summer changed their minds. The costs of climate change have been horrendous. Russia has suffered a devastating drought, and they’re still struggling to put out wildfires. From McClatchy:

Russia’s heat wave, along with its disastrous fallout, finally may have persuaded the Kremlin to combat climate change.

Russian officials, who until now have resisted dramatic action out of fears it would dampen economic growth, lately have issued strong statements linking global warming to the emergency Russia is facing. Some hope the abrupt change of tune will result in more effective environmental policies, even after the smog dies down.

“There is no question that we need to get ahead of climate change,” said Vladimir Slivyak, a co-chair of Ecodefense, a grassroots Russian environmental group. “This is a wake-up call.”

The crisis, which seems to have taken the Kremlin by surprise, features a fierce and unremitting heat wave that’s now well into its second month, a drought that’s ruined as much as a third of the vitally important grain crop and a wave of seemingly uncontrollable wildfires that have blanketed half of European Russia, including the capital Moscow, in a cloud of smoke.

Russia’s state meteorological service said smog conditions in Moscow have eased from a Saturday peak, but the Ministry of Emergency Services warned that Moscow-region fires have tripled size in the past week, spreading from 65 to 210 hectares. Meanwhile, an average of 700 people are dying per day in Moscow, double the average rate, which health officials blamed on the smog.

“Our country has not experienced such a heat wave in the last 50 or even 100 years,” Russian President Dmitry Medvedev said last week in a speech published in English on the Kremlin’s website. “We need to learn our lessons from what has happened, and from the unprecedented heat wave that we have faced this summer.

Russia isn’t the only place where the extremes caused by climate change are in evidence. Yesterday, The New York Times offered a round-up:

The summer’s heat waves baked the eastern United States, parts of Africa and eastern Asia, and above all Russia, which lost millions of acres of wheat and thousands of lives in a drought worse than any other in the historical record.

Seemingly disconnected, these far-flung disasters are reviving the question of whether global warming is causing more weather extremes.

The collective answer of the scientific community can be boiled down to a single word: probably.

“The climate is changing,” said Jay Lawrimore, chief of climate analysis at the National Climatic Data Center in Asheville, N.C. “Extreme events are occurring with greater frequency, and in many cases with greater intensity.”

He described excessive heat, in particular, as “consistent with our understanding of how the climate responds to increasing greenhouse gases.”

Theory suggests that a world warming up because of those gases will feature heavier rainstorms in summer, bigger snowstorms in winter, more intense droughts in at least some places and more record-breaking heat waves. Scientists and government reports say the statistical evidence shows that much of this is starting to happen.

Here in metropolitan D.C., in addition to a searing heat wave, we’ve enduring a summer of violent, freakish thunder storms that have downed trees, caused flooding and cost lives.

Do scientists have absolute proof the freakish weather has been caused by climate change? No. Does that theory best fit the facts? Yes.

520 comments Add your comment

StJ

August 16th, 2010
10:57 am

“Russian government sees harsh evidence of global warming”

Russian government sees moneymaking opportunity from global warming. There, fixed it…no charge.

Justin

August 16th, 2010
10:57 am

thanks Bubba- my theory is that the world is tilting and local temperatures will reverse- Georgia will become a glacier and anartica will become the vacation hot spot. If only I can get paid 1billion for my theory-

Global cooling....global cooling....global.....

August 16th, 2010
10:58 am

In 1975, cooling went from “one of the most important problems” to a first-place tie for “death and misery.” “The threat of a new ice age must now stand alongside nuclear war as a likely source of wholesale death and misery for mankind,” said Nigel Calder, a former editor of “New Scientist.”

Bawney Fwank

August 16th, 2010
10:58 am

When China and India is on board with limiting pollution let us know, but the cap and trade scam is just redistribution of wealth from economically successful countries (due to their forms of government)to assbackwards countries that are assbackwards due to their forms of government over thousands of years.

neo-Carlinist

August 16th, 2010
10:58 am

Enter your comments here

T-Town

August 16th, 2010
10:58 am

Global cooling….global cooling….global….. , Just like what Neo-Carlinist said, I had to learn for myself and not believe what everybody, including mother, said to be true.

Global cooling....global cooling....global.....

August 16th, 2010
10:59 am

Today’s global warming advocates probably don’t even realize their claims aren’t original. Before the cooling worries of the ’70s, America went through global warming fever for several decades around World War II.

jconservative

August 16th, 2010
10:59 am

From day one all the “global warming” models have predicted excessive heat, cold, rain/snow and drought. All models also show a slow, steady, long-term trend toward a warmer world climate over the coming decades.

But are they correct? You can let us know, dear reader, by posting your direct observations on, say, August 16, 2090.

Unfortunately, most humans do not have the ability to think “long range.” We want to see results of our efforts immediately. Waiting decades for the results of an effort is just not there for most humans. And we Americans seem particularly fragile when it comes to long range thinking. So we dismiss it.

But, look on the bright side. The planet has had five major extinction events in the past 540 million years. And none have significantly damaged the planet. Each extinction event destroyed most of the life on the planet at that time. “Over 98% of species that ever lived are now extinct…” But so what, we are not really concerned about life are we? The planet will be just fine.

Besides life always finds a way to survive and flourish. If, I repeat, if “global warming” leads to an extinction event, then so be it. Life will find a way to survive.

P/S – My money is on the ants!

Global cooling....global cooling....global.....

August 16th, 2010
11:00 am

The nation entered the “longest warm spell since 1776,” according to a March 27, 1933, New York Times headline. Shifting climate gears from ice to heat, the Associated Press article began “That next ice age, if one is coming … is still a long way off.”

Global cooling....global cooling....global.....

August 16th, 2010
11:01 am

In the 1970s, as the world cooled down, the fear was that mankind couldn’t grow enough food with a longer winter. “Climate Changes Endanger World’s Food Output,” declared a New York Times headline on Aug. 8, 1974, right in the heat of summer.

Global cooling....global cooling....global.....

August 16th, 2010
11:02 am

The New York Times noted that in 1972 the “mantle of polar ice increased by 12 percent” and had not returned to “normal” size.

North Atlantic sea temperatures declined, and shipping routes were “cluttered with abnormal amounts of ice.”

Furthermore, the permafrost in Russia and Canada was advancing southward, according to the December 29 article that closed out 1974.

Global cooling....global cooling....global.....

August 16th, 2010
11:02 am

Look, everbody, I’m cutting and pasting like Cynthia.

Global cooling....global cooling....global.....

August 16th, 2010
11:03 am

I couldn’t have said it better myself.

“What can one conclude from 110 years of conflicting climate coverage except that the weather changes and the media are just as capricious? “

Global cooling....global cooling....global.....

August 16th, 2010
11:04 am

Hear, hear!!

“For ordinary Americans to judge the media’s version of current events about global warming, it is necessary to admit that journalists have misrepresented the story three other times.

Yet no one in the media is owning up to that fact. Newspapers that pride themselves on correction policies for the smallest errors now find themselves facing a historical record that is enormous and unforgiving.

It is time for the news media to admit a consistent failure to report this issue fairly or accurately, with due skepticism of scientific claims.”

Billings

August 16th, 2010
11:04 am

I see harsh evidence that Cynthia’s brain has been fried by Oblahma’s hot air.

Kamchak

August 16th, 2010
11:05 am

Tick…tick…tick….

Global cooling....global cooling....global.....

August 16th, 2010
11:06 am

“It would be difficult for the media to do a worse job with climate change coverage. Perhaps the most important suggestion would be to remember the basic rules about journalism and set aside biases — a simple suggestion, but far from easy given the overwhelming extent of the problem.”

Bratty1

August 16th, 2010
11:06 am

@horseshak…All kevin costner movies suck. Except the untouchables, and he sucked in that.. but andy garcia and Sir Sean Connery and Deniro make up for it.

“Trebek, your mother’s a canadian wh*re!”

Global cooling....global cooling....global.....

August 16th, 2010
11:07 am

Want more?

CfA Press Release

Release No.: 03-10
For Release: March 31, 2003

20th Century Climate Not So Hot
Cambridge, MA – A review of more than 200 climate studies led by researchers at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics has determined that the 20th century is neither the warmest century nor the century with the most extreme weather of the past 1000 years. The review also confirmed that the Medieval Warm Period of 800 to 1300 A.D. and the Little Ice Age of 1300 to 1900 A.D. were worldwide phenomena not limited to the European and North American continents. While 20th century temperatures are much higher than in the Little Ice Age period, many parts of the world show the medieval warmth to be greater than that of the 20th century.

Saul Good

August 16th, 2010
11:09 am

Dear Birthers!

YOU lose AGAIN!

This time… the ruling took place at our nation’s HIGHEST Court…

Liberal “Activist” Judge on the bench who wrote the decision? Hmmm?

You guessed it! Justice Samuel Alito.

“Supreme Court upholds ‘birther’ sanction
By The Associated Press
click to enlarge
WASHINGTON – The Supreme Court has upheld a $20,000 fine against a leader of the movement challenging President Barack Obama’s citizenship.

The high court on Monday refused to block a federal judge’s October 2009 ruling that required California lawyer and dentist Orly Taitz to pay the $20,000 fine for filing a “frivolous” litigation. The judge said Taitz attempted to misuse the federal courts to push a political agenda.

Taitz sued in Georgia federal court on behalf of Army Capt. Connie Rhodes. Rhodes sought to avoid deployment to Iraq by claiming Obama wasn’t born in the United States.

Justice Samuel Alito on Monday rejected Taitz’s second request to block the sanctions. Justice Clarence Thomas had rejected the request earlier. ”

Hopefully Joey Farah over at WND (Wing Nutter and Birther Central) will use part of the hundreds of thousands of dollars he’s raised by selling “lies” to the birthers to cover that fee for his Queen: Orly.

Bratty1

August 16th, 2010
11:09 am

No less than Leonard Nimoy did an in search of… episode about the coming ice age circa 70’s, I watched it on the science channel not long ago. Time magazine did a cover story on the coming snowball earth. Monday, Jun. 24, 1974..google it folks, this sh*t ain’t hard.

neo-Carlinist

August 16th, 2010
11:11 am

jconservative, a very safe/neo-Carlinist bet (ants). of course, it will only be a matter of time (another 500 million years) before some self-serving ant will draw a line between carpenter ants (black) and those (axis of) evil fire ants, which just happen to be red (socialists?). we all know both varities want to rule the world; the carpenter ants by eating/destroying wood, and the fire ants by killing any living thing that isn’t a fire ant. you see, we need to boil this down to a base level, sound bite issue (black or red, sorry no blue ants). and of course, we know those tiny brown ones aren’t really “players” in the grand scheme of things, so let’s go “double or nothing” – I’m putting my money on the fire ants. after all, ants (like homo sapiens) are by nature “socialists” so might as well dance with the one who brought me.

Global cooling....global cooling....global.....

August 16th, 2010
11:11 am

My work is done here……hi yo Silver, away!!

Bratty1

August 16th, 2010
11:12 am

The ruling in no way says the kenyan was born in the US, it simply said you can’t sue to not be deployed by the kenyan, until it’s proven he is a kenyan. Chicken or the egg thing.

Matti

August 16th, 2010
11:12 am

If you believe that climate change is occuring independently of human actions that affect our environment, then fine, whatever, that’s your right.

But if you believe that your disbelief that human actions are creating climate change SOMEHOW MAKES IT OKAY TO POLLUTE OUR AIR AND WATER, and destroy and waste important natural resources, then you’ve got some seriously screwed up ideas about the obligations of responsible stewardship and what we owe our children and their grandchildren. (Selfish *bleeps*!) You’d rather yell, “Nuh-UH!” all day long than come together on the basic premise that CLEAN AIR is a GOOD thing. Criminey. :roll:

uga_b

August 16th, 2010
11:12 am

It seems that a large problem is that India and China are overpopulated and using too much gas; therefore, the only logical conclusion is to give all our money to Africa. That’ll show ‘em.

Billings

August 16th, 2010
11:12 am

Russians may be experiencing the negative impact of climate change, but they’re more in favor of adapting, than changing.

Voice of Russia–”Alexander Ginsburg, deputy director of the Russian institute of Atmospheric Physics says that the emphasis should be on the creation of the conditions for adapting to the situation and not on fighting against climate change.”

granny godzilla

August 16th, 2010
11:13 am

Saw This at Kos and thought it was appropriate…

“I wrote over the weekend about CNN’s chief meteorologist publicly stating on air that he now accepts the evidence for man-made climate change, often referred to as Anthropogenic Global Warming or AGW for short. Another national weatherman, Stu Ostro, Senior Meteorologist at the Weather Channel, sounds to me even further divorced from his prior, more skeptical views, and he’s made the switch, in his own words, based on evidence:

I changed my point of view from what it was in the days of the Fred Singer article, and would do so again if that’s what the evidence shows. But it does not. As I wrote back in 2006, global warming is not a religion. The chemistry, physics, and thermodynamics involved are science, not religion, nor are they liberal or conservative.

For those who don’t know, Fred Singer is a noted AGW skeptic who arose from the well funded ranks of former defense industry scientists turned anti-environmentalists beautifully chronicled in the book Merchants of Doubt.

It’s important to criticize those who attack science, and I’m happy to return the favor when anyone stoops to personally maligning scientists who are simply reporting their findings for our benefit. But it’s equally important, if not more so, to recognize those with the professional courage and intellectual honesty to publicly change their view in the face of new evidence. Stu Ostro is clearly one of those folks and he’s helping blaze a trail for his peers to follow.

Willie Horton

August 16th, 2010
11:14 am

Whoever believes tax increases will cause a change in the earth’s temperature is a %^$%^ pinhead.

Top Priority

August 16th, 2010
11:14 am

Saul Good

I heard that “birthers” are the result of rampant “global warming”. Just sayin…..

stands for decibels

August 16th, 2010
11:14 am

Who knew that radical right wingers put so much stock in the scientific opinions of Joe Strummer and Leonard Nimoy?

Whacks Eloquent

August 16th, 2010
11:15 am

Saul,

Did not think anybody was taking the birthers seriously anymore. Maybe now we can lock them in a room with Alex Jones and have them talk about 9-11 conspiracies. And don’t forget to invite Elvis!

Even more exciting about this news is that Supreme Court upheld a loser-pays scenario! Finally, maybe, we can start seeing the absolute idiots who dredge up useless lawsuits go back under their rocks and stop crippling our judicial system. Tort reform may not even be necessary if we can just uphold “loser pays”!

Pluto

August 16th, 2010
11:16 am

Man it sure seems that the choice of topics is somewhat constained here. I have a suggestion; all you guilt ridden, misguided, progressive malcontents should just go ahead and do it. Rid the fragile planet of the environmental menace known as man. Please you go first.

Top Priority

August 16th, 2010
11:16 am

Matti – if the argument is for conservation, then I’m all in. But if it’s a knee jerk reaction to an oft debunked “global warming” hysteria, then I’m more of a sketpic.

East point mob

August 16th, 2010
11:16 am

As the founder of the weather channel stated ” Global warming is the biggest hoax ever perpetuated on mankind.”

In the news recently a scientist who if I remember correctly was Russian just published study results that show a direct correlation between the melting of the polar ice caps on Earth and on Mars. The scientist found that the polar ice caps in both countries have receded at the same pace. The obvious conclusion? The one common denominator? Both caps were melting due to a warming expansion of this thing called the sun. Yep. You got it. The sun. The sun has weather systems and warming periods and periods of more intense sunspot activity.

Right now the sun is going through a longer term warming period. There is a reason why North Dakota and Montana, places which get sub zero freezing temperatures, used to be hot temperate rain forests with giant cold blooded reptiles called dinosaurs. That reason is that way back then the earth was much hotter. And it wasn’t man made of course. I don’t recollect the dinosaurs burning fossil fuels.

We also know that the Earth went through a 10-12 degree higher warming period during the middle ages. Were the Vikings driving cars back in the 9th century?

The very notion that was put forth that man could predict the weather accurately 50 years out using computer generated models with several “variables” is downright ludicrous. Who would believe such utter nonsense? I’ll believe those models when they can accurately predict the weather 2 weeks from now.

As for global warming I hope its true. A warmer earth means longer growing seasons which means more food can be raised to feed a growing human populace.

And what is this nonsense about how damaging a 1 degree overall rise in temperatures can be for the planet? For Pete’s sake we have an 80 or 90 degree swing in temperatures every 6 months. When it hit 100 the other day I sat there and thought wow, in 6 months it’ll get down to 20 degrees at the height of winter. If the Earth can handle 80 or more degree swings in temperature in 180 degree time intervals then I can assure you that it can certainly handle a 1 degree overall climb in temperatures over 100 years.

stands for decibels

August 16th, 2010
11:16 am

My work is done here…

So, twenty copy-pastes and the Club for Growth gives you a dog biscuit?

RGB

August 16th, 2010
11:17 am

If I were a liberal….

With a 17.5% underemployment rate, debt that will crush us and our children, a deficit that quintuples anything ever seen before, rogue nations developing nuclear weapons that will cause proliferation among their peer countries, accelerating moral decay, a growing, intrusive federal government, voters’ wishes being overturned by a single federal judge, presidential encouragement of a Ground Zero Mosque–and much more–I’d talk about Russia’s opinion on global warming, Reagan’s Alzheimers–anything other than what Barack Obama and the Democrat party are doing to systematically annihilate this country.

Know what? It’s not working.

markie mark

August 16th, 2010
11:17 am

thanks for the backup, Global Cooling…..but as CT says, we are just making this up…and obviously, CT, you DONT remember the late 70’s as well as you think you do…as Bratty1 eloquently said it, “.google it folks, this sh*t ain’t hard.”

East point mob

August 16th, 2010
11:17 am

Sorry that should be the polar caps in both planets. Yes. I do realize Mars is a planet and not a country.

uga_b

August 16th, 2010
11:17 am

I think most people would be all for legitimate enivronmental policy, but giving the idiots in congress more of our money or frittering it away in foreign sinkholes seems asinine. Perhaps the government should try one policy that doesn’t involve taxes or wasting money. JUST ONE. It would be a start.

And start killing all those darn methane producing cows. End cow flatulence now!

Avenger

August 16th, 2010
11:18 am

kayaker. ” And they are doing it this week” I guess you got this from the CIA. As a former nuclear worker, I am curious where you got these wacky ideas about a nuclear reactor.

Global cooling....global cooling....global.....

August 16th, 2010
11:19 am

stands for decibels
August 16th, 2010
11:16 am

As I said, I can copy and paste just like Cynthia.

Care to attempt to debunk what I posted?

Don’t forget, Cynthia accused a poster of making up the “global cooling” scare of the 1970s.

John Birch

August 16th, 2010
11:19 am

Cap and trade is a socialist scam. What we need is more mandatory birth control and sterilization because, paraphrasing Reagan, people aren’t the solution, people are the problem!

Cynthia Is Sexy!!

August 16th, 2010
11:19 am

As a result of climate change the cafeteria will be serving Salisbury Steak w/Mashed potatos, green beans almondine and tea.

Enjoy!

Saul Good

August 16th, 2010
11:20 am

Wing Nutters….continue to pollute! With all of your rants about the “debt” being left behind for your kids and grand kiddies…I’m sure those of you who say that polluting is okay and drives PROFITS UP sleep well at night knowing that you endorse leaving your kids crappy air to breath and dirty water to drink. So go fill up that Yukon and drive around aimlessly for a few hours throwing your fast food wrappers everywhere you possible can in your path… your kids will enjoy the mess you left behind for them.

(anyway…with that “rapture” thingy coming any day now… I mean…who cares about “pollution” when you believe that soon the sky will be falling…I mean Talibangelicals…isn’t this denying that fouling our air, land, and water being OKAY what this is all about anyway… why bother saving a planet and having clean water when soon you’ll all be at the “exclusive” Muslim-Free Christians ONLY Country Club in the sky…the very one you’ve purchased your tickets for each and every time you’ve donated to your cult)…

Top Priority

August 16th, 2010
11:21 am

Saul Good

So what’s you schtick for the day, birthers or pollution? Get a grip, dude.

Whacks Eloquent

August 16th, 2010
11:26 am

Another start for intelligent environmental reform would be to end the ethanol scam. It is insane that the media has not made more of this – it takes more fossil fuel (mostly coal-based, so argument that it does reduce petroleum use is correct, but incomplete) to generate the power needed to cultivate and generate the typically corn-based fuel than is saved in the long run by people putting it in their cars, mostly as an additive. Not to mention the damage that ethanol does to vehicle engines, thus in the end shortening the life of the vehicles and requiring more energy to create new vehicles. The corn crop that is wasted on ethanol could go a long way in helping to reduce famine in nations with starving populations.

East point mob

August 16th, 2010
11:26 am

Time magazine cover in 1975- ” The coming Ice age. Why the earth is cooling and entering a new Ice age”

What changed in the next 20 years to where people are now harping about global warming? Nothing. Except politics of course.

How much has Al Gore made off this scaremongering? Is it 100 million or is it now 150 million by now?

Did he ever correct those proven 23 scientific errors in his bogus movie about global warming?

Did Al ever take some serious pics of the south pole to replace the styrofoam he used in the film?

Does he still blame global warming for the snow melting at the top of Mt. Kiliminjaro? Or did he learn that at that altitude that it never gets above freezing and that the ice was melting due to a scientific process called sublimation where soil and ice mix thus melting the ice?

Did Al learn any new geography in reference to Cuba? In his film he had all of Cuba disappearing under water due to global warming. Did he finally learn that 1/3 of the country is mountainous with 5,000-6,000 foot peaks? Going by his movie I would suspect that Denver, Colorado would be under water if all of Cuba would also be under water.

Did Al Gore correct any of these bogus claims in his movie? Just curious.

Saul Good

August 16th, 2010
11:27 am

Whacks Eloquent : “Even more exciting about this news is that Supreme Court upheld a loser-pays scenario! Finally, maybe, we can start seeing the absolute idiots who dredge up useless lawsuits go back under their rocks and stop crippling our judicial system. Tort reform may not even be necessary if we can just uphold “loser pays”!”

Whacks, What are they going to teach at Liberty University’s Law School???!!! I’m pretty sure that all they teach and the only case studies they review are losing cases…like the one up near Harrisburg PA a few years ago based upon Evolution being taught.

It’s going to be okay for them for a while…the Evil-Gelical Church has lots of loot. Their cult followers and members won’t mind taking out a 2nd or 3rd mortgage to finance a few more whacky lawsuits based upon phony and non-existent principles.

T-Town

August 16th, 2010
11:27 am

Saul Good, Too much caffeine is not good for you, a scientific study has proved this.