I don’t usually burden my readers with technical jargon, but in this case…
Those of us technically inclined call the rapid ‘Climate Change’ we and other communities across the USA are presently experiencing “Summer.” That can mean heat that may seem unbearable. But trust me, “Summer” always gives way to “Fall” and “Winter,” followed by the miracle of “Spring.” We previously called this phenomenon the “changing seasons,” but now it is simply ‘Climate Change’!
Seasons have to do with the tilt of the Earth’s axis with respect to the plane of the ecliptic, not with carbon dioxide. No tilt would mean no seasons, because both the Northern and Southern hemispheres would receive equal sunlight year around. But I am already getting far beyond what even graduates of Harvard University know. In one survey, fully half could not explain why the seasons change. That is considered an elementary measure of scientific curiosity and literacy.
But scientific illiteracy gets far worse in the media. According to a column by “award winning” Los Angeles Times “journalist” Steve Lopez (July 18, 2018), “The sizzle may never subside.” Oh really?
Our days are already getting shorter and our average high temperature begins a slide toward winter on August 14. On that date Portland’s average high drops from 82 to 81 degrees F and begins a relentless slide, one degree every week, until the rate of descent doubles in September and doubles again in October, finally bottoming out just after the Winter Solstice near Christmas time.
The climate change in Los Angeles is less dramatic than ours in Oregon, because they are much closer to the Equator. But they are not so close as to have no seasons at all. Snow can fall in the mountains of Southern California. And you may want to wear something on the nude beach near Santa Barbara on New Year’s Day!
Because of inconvenient winters, columnists like Lopez can be expected to drop the hysteria about “sizzle” and settle back to their winter refrain about “weather is not climate!” or “severe snowstorms are a sure sign of Global Warming!” Consistency and scientific knowledge were never their strong suits. But who needs a scientific education when they are merely purveying propaganda at the behest of the massive Climate Cartel? The Cartel is again “suggesting” that the media need to link hot summers to “Climate Change,” and chastising them for not doing so consistently.
Although it should be obvious that a one TRILLION dollar per year Cartel is pulling the climate hysteria strings from behind the scenes, we rarely get a clear view of who is actually doing it. In this case it was a letter that went out from Ralph Nader’s old organization, Public Citizen. They encourage newspaper editors and TV meteorologists to hawk hot summer weather as man-made “Climate Change,” clearly establishing the propaganda pattern if not the cause and effect.
Public Citizen, a big business now funded by George Soros, instructed the media to “Remember to Connect the Dots Between Extreme Heat and Climate Change” as temperatures soar. That raises the issue of how much scientific expertise Public Citizen has. That is simple: None. Yet they go on to chastise the media for lukewarm efforts so far: “The dearth of media coverage plays a role in that [public] complacency.” And “the media has a critical role to play in breaking the spiral of silence.” In other words, the media should increase its efforts, as if they are not already saturating us with climate propaganda.
Those vulnerable to propaganda are being played for fools by the ever manipulative Left. Even those who can see through the ruses often become superstitious when the weather turns hot. They worry that ‘perhaps we need to play along with the hysteria, just to be safe,’ which of course allows the hysteria to continue. Rational people simply say NO to superstitions. The world is not coming to an end, just because the Left is saying so.
Let’s do a reality check on “award winning” Steve Lopez. Are we really “feeling the heat like never before?” Here are state record highs from official NOAA climate records. There is plenty of sizzle, but how much is recent?
California and World Record High Temperature: 134 F in Death Valley on July 10, 1913.
Oregon Record High: 119 F* on July 29 and August 10, 1898
Alaska Record High: 100 F in 1915
Washington State Record High: 118 F in 1928 and 1961
Idaho Record High: 118 F in 1934
Arizona Record High: 128 F in 1994
New York State Record High: 108 F in 1926
Connecticut Record High: 106 F in 1916
Maryland Record High: 109 F in 1898, 1918, and 1936
Alabama Record High: 112 F in 1925
Florida Record High: 109 F in 1931
Texas Record High: 120 F in 1936 and 1994
Oklahoma Record High: 120 F four times in 1936
Arkansas Record High: 120 F in 1936
Michigan Record High: 112 F 1936
Illinois Record High: 117 F in 1954
Utah Record High: 117 F in 1985
South Dakota Record High: 120 F in 1936 and 2006
*Former Washington State Climatologist Mark Albright informs me that Oregon’s official record high of 119 F in Pendleton in 1898 should actually be 117 F. And the claim of 119 F in Prineville in 1898 is completely erroneous. Thermometers in use at that time were not even calibrated beyond 115 F. Albright is trying to get NOAA to correct their official records.
Note that only one state record high occurred this century, and it merely tied a record from the Dust Bowl era. Most were in the first half of the 20th century, long before man-made carbon dioxide was even significant. And the majority were observed during the Dust Bowl of the 1930s, with 1936 claiming the most state record highs. See Figure 1.
Perhaps Steve Lopez was thinking about record high temperatures for the world’s continents? Were ANY of those recent? No, not even close, as Figure 2 shows. As with the state record highs, all were set long ago, with some dating as far back as the 122 F European record high set in Seville, Spain in 1881.
What about Canada? After all, the slight warming trend we have observed over the last forty years in the NASA satellite data has been greatest in the Arctic and least (zero) in the Antarctic. But alas, that does not help Mr. Lopez either, as you can see with the Canadian Provincial/Territorial record highs in Figure 3. Only one record high occurred this century. All the others occurred long ago.
The astounding records of 113 F in Saskatchewan, 112 F in Manitoba, and 108 F in Ontario were Dust Bowl phenomena. And the remarkable 107 F in Labrador was from an early 20th century hot spell that occurred more than a century ago. It is hard to imagine that our northern friends who send us so much bitterly cold air in the winter can get so hot. But then again, they have not seen that sort of heat for a long while either.
Even the observed record high temperature in the satellite record for the lower troposphere occurred in the middle of that record, twenty years ago in July 1998.
“Heat like never before?” That is COMPLETE NONSENSE!
Gordon J. Fulks lives in Corbett and can be reached at email@example.com. He holds a doctorate in physics from the University of Chicago’s Laboratory for Astrophysics and Space Research.