Al Gore is right about snow and climate change

Even if Americans were more knowledgeable about the science of climate change, they’d have difficulty understanding the connection between a winter of extreme weather and a warming planet. A giant cold front has much of the country locked down under bitter cold and brought Chicago the most snow it has had in its recorded history.
Winter_Weather.JPEG-0deb1

Since conservatives have dedicated themselves to defending the interests of Big Business — which has worked hard to persuade Americans that climate change is a hoax — Bill O’Reilly decided to make fun of Al Gore on his broadcast last week. But Gore pushed back with a response on his Web site which noted that a warming planet causes extreme weather:

“As it turns out, the scientific community has been addressing this particular question for some time now and they say that increased heavy snowfalls are completely consistent with what they have been predicting as a consequence of man-made global warming.”

Gore then quoted an article by Clarence Page in the Chicago Tribune in early 2010: “In fact, scientists have been warning for at least two decades that global warming could make snowstorms more severe. Snow has two simple ingredients: cold and moisture. Warmer air collects moisture like a sponge until it hits a patch of cold air. When temperatures dip below freezing, a lot of moisture creates a lot of snow.

“A rise in global temperature can create all sorts of havoc, ranging from hotter dry spells to colder winters, along with increasingly violent storms, flooding, forest fires and loss of endangered species.”

Gore might also have noted the extreme weather in Australia, which is suffering through massive flooding and, this week, a huge cyclone. That follows a year of intense drought and forest fires.

Of course, one of the reasons that most Americans doubt the science of climate change that is Big Business has paid millions of dollars to make sure we remain ignorant, as James Hoggan points out in his book, Climate Cover-up:

Ross had uncovered the first hard evidence of an organized campaign, largely financed by the coal and oil industries, to make us think that climate science was somehow still controversial, climate change still unproven. I had always known about the potential for public manipulation, but I had never conceived of a campaign so huge, so well-funded, and well-organized. . .Denier scientists were being paid well, not for conducting climate research, but for practicing public relations.

But it is artists — not journalists or politicians — who most brilliantly capture the foibles of human nature, the crises of society and the ramifications of our irrationality. And they see the ramifications long before the rest of us.
It’s no surprise, then, that the brilliant Octavia Butler — the late writer of science fiction who won a MacArthur “genius” grant — wrote a two-novel series, the first published in 1994, that seemed to predict where we’re headed.

In “Parable of the Talents,” published in 1998, she presented a United States torn apart by climate change and its consequences. She also gives readers a citizenry that still doesn’t admit that human activity brought on the apocalypse. In “Parable of the Talents,” Butler’s protagonist, Lauren Olamina, writes in her journal:

The climate is still changing, warming. It’s supposed to settle at a new stable state someday. Until then, we’ll go on getting a lot of violent erratic weather around the world. Sea level is still rising and chewing away at low-lying coastal areas like the sand dunes that used to protect Humboldt Bay and Arcata Bay just north of us. Half the crops in the Midwest and South are still withering from the heat, drowning in floods, or being torn to pieces by winds, so food prices are still high. The warming has made tropical diseases like malaria and dengue normal parts of life in the warm, wet Gulf Coast and Southern Atlantic coast states.

To repeat, that novel was published in 1998. Butler’s prescient “Parable” two-part series still gives me nightmares about my young daughter’s future.

— by Cynthia Tucker

794 comments Add your comment

Greg

February 3rd, 2011
9:36 am

So we are using science fiction for support now. Okay……….

Greg

February 3rd, 2011
9:36 am

Forgot to be say….First!

Peadawg

February 3rd, 2011
9:37 am

Is the climate changing? Yes. The world’s climate has been changing for years and years and years.

Question, Cynthia. What caused the ice age? Cars and factories and whatnot weren’t around back then…so who’s to blame for it?

cosby

February 3rd, 2011
9:39 am

Gore is a P.T. Barnum making millions of dollars promoting global / climate change. The scientific community is split on what is reality vs spin. the fact is, the earth goes thorugh natural changes from the ice age to modern day weather.If you believe the likes of Al Gore then you are very niave…the world is in a continued state of change and man pays a very small part. Next year when it is warmer than normal, there will be another spin..see the draught of a few years ago. the Fact..God knows best!!

Stephenson Billings

February 3rd, 2011
9:39 am

Peadawg

February 3rd, 2011
9:41 am

LMAO! Nice, Stephenson.

jt

February 3rd, 2011
9:42 am

Being neurotic is your right.

Frightening or stressing out children is just plain wrong.

I’m sure Big Pharma has an app for that.

Stephenson Billings

February 3rd, 2011
9:42 am

So who’s correct? From the UK Independent in 2000:

Snowfalls are now just a thing of the past

“Britain’s winter ends tomorrow with further indications of a striking environmental change: snow is starting to disappear from our lives.

Sledges, snowmen, snowballs and the excitement of waking to find that the stuff has settled outside are all a rapidly diminishing part of Britain’s culture, as warmer winters – which scientists are attributing to global climate change – produce not only fewer white Christmases, but fewer white Januaries and Februaries.

[snip]

Global warming, the heating of the atmosphere by increased amounts of industrial gases, is now accepted as a reality by the international community. Average temperatures in Britain were nearly 0.6°C higher in the Nineties than in 1960-90, and it is estimated that they will increase by 0.2C every decade over the coming century. Eight of the 10 hottest years on record occurred in the Nineties.

However, the warming is so far manifesting itself more in winters which are less cold than in much hotter summers. According to Dr David Viner, a senior research scientist at the climatic research unit (CRU) of the University of East Anglia,within a few years winter snowfall will become “a very rare and exciting event”.

“Children just aren’t going to know what snow is,” he said.

The effects of snow-free winter in Britain are already becoming apparent. This year, for the first time ever, Hamleys, Britain’s biggest toyshop, had no sledges on display in its Regent Street store. “It was a bit of a first,” a spokesperson said. “

Good Grief

February 3rd, 2011
9:44 am

Have I been banned from posting?

Tech Man

February 3rd, 2011
9:44 am

Good Grief

February 3rd, 2011
9:44 am

Apparently not…

Ragnar Danneskjöld

February 3rd, 2011
9:44 am

I think Wile E Coyote was a genius too.

Ragnar Danneskjöld

February 3rd, 2011
9:46 am

Thank goodness we have geniuses to take care of us, if we will only pony up more taxpayer dollars for “research.”

Ragnar Danneskjöld

February 3rd, 2011
9:47 am

Shouldn’t this essay be titled “Bonfires of the Geniuses?”

Ragnar Danneskjöld

February 3rd, 2011
9:48 am

Those that can, do, but geniuses live on grants.

wtf?

February 3rd, 2011
9:50 am

Ok, you’re convinced it’s the Republicans fault for everything now huh? Even the weather?
CT, get your head out of your arse, you sound like a silly child at this point

Tommy Maddox

February 3rd, 2011
9:51 am

“Al Gore is right about snow and climate change” and robots are reading my mail.

Good Grief

February 3rd, 2011
9:51 am

As long as we’re discussing science fiction, check out Michael Crichton’s “State of Fear.” Good book. Discusses the rammifactions of political entities making money or gaining power as a result of a crisis, or skewing their data to make events look worse than they otherwise are.

Quake

February 3rd, 2011
9:52 am

If you search the internet pre 2006 you can’t find a single scientist claiming the weather in certain regions would get colder or that snow could be heavier because of global warming…The Global warming MYTH is a cash cow for Al Gore. If a Scientist wants funding to study the effects of climate change on the Blue Crowned Motmot then they HAVE TO CONCUR that Global Warming is indeed factual otherwise NO MONEY. Follow the money people…Global Warming is a MYTH. Earth’s atmosphere has changed millions and millions of times and will continue to change with or without the help of us little humans.

Tall

February 3rd, 2011
9:54 am

The climate may well be getting warmer, but that is no reason to pass “cap and trade” legislation. There is very little mankind can do to stop it. I’ll take global warming over an ice age any day. Is any one familiar with sunspot activity?

Stephenson Billings

February 3rd, 2011
9:55 am

And yet another post vanishing into thin air…. guess I’m in time out or something….

Good Grief

February 3rd, 2011
9:56 am

Stephenson – Don’t feel bad. I’ve had two posts denied today. I’m trying to incremental method to see what it is that keeps getting me blocked.

Zzz

February 3rd, 2011
9:56 am

Tucker = Chicken Little

liberal hypocrisy

February 3rd, 2011
9:58 am

Al Gore is always right as he flies in his private jets, as he lives in his new $9 million dollar mansion in Montecito, CA, as he lets his limousine idle at his 6 figure speaking engagements, as he was potentially going to be the first “green” billionaire if “Cap and Trade” passed and his ownership of the climate exchange in Chicago closed where carbon credits were to be traded. Also he is right as he molests women.

Al Gore must be causing this storm with the huge carbon footprint he leaves with his jet, limousine, and mansion. He is the epitome of liberal hypocrisy!

Libertarian

February 3rd, 2011
9:59 am

“defending the interests of Big Business”

You mean like a union that donates $28m to your campaign?

Stephenson Billings

February 3rd, 2011
9:59 am

All I was trying to do was post some info on how one forcaster says that 3 out of the next 5 winters could be colder than this winter…. all due to La Nina and not greenhouse gases….

Peter

February 3rd, 2011
10:01 am

Republican the party of Debt and fiscal mismanagement…….Please never say the Republican’s are conservative, and please say they understand spending.

February 1st, 2011
09:11 AM ET

RNC in $23-million hole
By: CNN Political Unit

(CNN) – Newly-installed Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus has a $23-million hole to dig out of, according to a year-end report the organization filed with the Federal Elections Commission.

According to the official report, the committee has over $21 million debt with about $700,000 cash-on-hand. But in a statement Monday Priebus acknowledged the RNC’s cash woes are even worse than the report reflects.

“While the year-end FEC report reveals the Republican National Committee is $21 million in debt, I believe it is best to get out all the facts as we know them associated with our financial position. To date, the committee has approximately $23 million in debt: $15 million in loans, and $8 million owed to vendors,” Priebus said in the sobering statement.

Yes this is the same party of George Bush, and Reaganomics that has bankrupted America !

Good Grief

February 3rd, 2011
10:01 am

Let’s be honest, people. If we would just give our money to third world nations, we know that our winters wouldn’t be so bad. I mean, who needs services like AccuWeather saying that we’re entering a “cycle” of colder climate, and the recent bad winters are the result of a particularly nasty La Nina “cycle.”

JKL2

February 3rd, 2011
10:01 am

Still waiting for that explanation of why we have oil in Alaska?

Stephenson Billings

February 3rd, 2011
10:02 am

“defending the interests of Big Business”

Like GE and Obama’s pal Immelt? “Obama issues global warming rules in January, gives GE an exemption in February”

Coincidence? Or “crony capitalism”?

Good Grief

February 3rd, 2011
10:02 am

Stephenson – I tried the same. Apparently it’s the man’s name that gets you blocked. See what I just wrote at 10:01. AccuWeather is okay, the name of the forecaster apparently bad. But, condiering his last name, if the moderation program isn’t smart enough, it probably would block your post.

Libertarian

February 3rd, 2011
10:05 am

Stephenson Billings

You mean “GE/NBC/Comcast/Universal?”

Peadawg

February 3rd, 2011
10:06 am

Peter,

So is the DNC. ttp://www.politico.com/news/stories/1210/45898.html. Thanks for posting ALL the facts. Trust me, we won’t EVER label the Democratic party as conservative.

BlahBlahBlah

February 3rd, 2011
10:07 am

Of course Al Gore is going to defend himself. His “carbon offset” scam stands to make him millions of dollars! But I forgot, it’s only BIG BUSINESS that is greedy.

Stephenson Billings

February 3rd, 2011
10:07 am

Could be. I wonder if he always got picked on in school? :)

jconservative

February 3rd, 2011
10:07 am

I am not a big Al Gore fan. I alwaysfelt he was born with a silver spoon in his mouth.

But I am a believer in the truth.

Al Gore made his millions as a consultant to Google in the early 2000’s after he left government. Remember when we all laughed when Gore said he invented the internet? Well it turns out Google felt he did and hired him as a consultant. Paid him in Google stock. In a couple years Google stock soared in price and Gore sold his shares for $165 million.

Gore then looked around for someone to help him manage his $165 million, found no one and started a company to manage excess cash. It is booming and he getting rich.

And yeah, he made a lot of money on the global warming book. But it is only peanuts cocmpared to the rest.

Gore had the last laugh.

Ivan

February 3rd, 2011
10:09 am

“Al Gore is right…”

Stopped reading right there. Ya’ll have a nice day.

BlahBlahBlah

February 3rd, 2011
10:10 am

I love it!

Cold, snowy winter? CLIMATE CHANGE!
Warm winter? CLIMATE CHANGE!
Dry summer? CLIMATE CHANGE!
Wet summer? CLIMATE CHANGE!
Hot summer? CLIMATE CHANGE!
Cool summer? CLIMATE CHANGE!
Flat tire on the way to work? CLIMATE CHANGE!
Burger King forgot to hold the mayo on your Whopper? CLIMATE CHANGE!

Jimmy62

February 3rd, 2011
10:10 am

It’s interesting how you say the rest of us don’t have the education to make judgments on this… But apparently both you and Al Gore (who barely graduated with a degree in theology?) have more than enough knowledge to make those judgments for the rest of us.

It doesn’t matter what the weather is one day to the next, or one year to the next. No matter what happens, we know you will say it’s because of global warming. The temperature around the world could drop 10 degrees over the next several years, and you would point to it as proof of global warming. When it’s unseasonably cold, you say that day to day weather doesn’t matter since you are talking about long term climate trends. And when it’s unseasonably hot, you tell us it’s proof of global warming. When the UN tells us the Himalaya glaciers will be gone in decades, it’s proof! But when it turns out that report was a lie, and the worst case scenario is centuries, well that’s proof, too!

We don’t trust you because you lie and obfuscate, and because half the “scientific” things Al Gore has said turned out to be complete bull, or major exaggerations. Had you global warming people been more honest, and had less tendency to exaggerate for effect, you might be doing a little better at getting your way.

Good Grief

February 3rd, 2011
10:13 am

Depends on where he went to school, I suppose. If it was a common enough name, probably not. According to his Wiki page (I cringe to even use this as a source), he was born in Rhode Island and moved around a lot. During his teenage years he carried an anemometer to measure wind speed. He has two children and he is a bodybuilder. Still, he does manage a decent level of forecasting accuracy.

Mr. Right

February 3rd, 2011
10:15 am

Even if Americans were more knowledgeable about the science of climate change,

That first line jumped out at me since it’s a line libs love to use. Ya”l are dumb and if ya’ll were smart like us ya’ll would believe like we would is the thought! The going joke around here is ‘ where is Al Gore when we need him “.

Christopher Micheal

February 3rd, 2011
10:16 am

Hey Cindy,
Get you head out of the Ass of Al Gore..You are a idiot and the rest of your Global Warming morons are just shall we say “Slow” Gore has a vested financial interest in Global warming..Global warming is a Huge Hoax and thankfully most people are seeing that it is a complete joke…Remember in the mid 70’s we were going into another Ice Age…
Do yourself a favor and get a life and stop lying to people..

duke

February 3rd, 2011
10:17 am

Gore would’ve prevented 911, he can read a classified doc.

Mike

February 3rd, 2011
10:18 am

The sky is falling, the sky is falling!!!!!!!!! What a DUF!

Russ555

February 3rd, 2011
10:20 am

It’s much easier to make fun of Al Gore than to think seriously about climate change and its effects. Too bad.

kevin

February 3rd, 2011
10:20 am

I find it mind-boggling that people still insist the scientific community is split on whether climate change caused by global warming exists and humans have a role in exacerbating it–there is universal agreement it exists and humans have made the problem worse. Simply b/c Sean Hannity, Bill O’Reilly and the like suggest there is not consensus, despite not giving evidence, does not mean there isn’t.

FYI, there is also scientific consensus that evolution exists, despite the fact that many of you still think man was created by a sky fairy.

Cognos

February 3rd, 2011
10:23 am

Typical “Heads I win, tails you lose” scenario libs love to play….

Mike C

February 3rd, 2011
10:24 am

Where are you Cynthia?

aps

February 3rd, 2011
10:25 am

I quit listening to any global warming pundit after the East Anglia University Climate Research Unit fraud was uncovered.

Cognos

February 3rd, 2011
10:25 am

Hey Kevin, if man evolved from monkeys, then why do we still have monkeys? Just asking.