By David L. Brown
Just as the global warming and climate change deniers proclaim that the whole thing is a hoax perpetrated by thousands of dodgy scientists, from Canada we learn that the winter just drawing to a close was the warmest ever in the country. From the Montreal Gazette:
Environment Canada scientists report that winter 2009/10 was 4 C above normal, making it the warmest since nationwide records were first kept in 1948. It was also the driest winter on the 63-year record, with precipitation 22 per cent below normal nationally, and down 60 per cent in parts of Alberta, Saskatchewan and Ontario.
“It’s beyond shocking,” David Phillips, a senior climatologist with Environment Canada, told Canwest News Tuesday. Records have been shattered from “coast to coast to coast.”
“It is truly a remarkable situation,” says Phillips, noting that he’s seen nothing like it in his 40 years of weather watching. He also warns that “the winter than wasn’t” may have set the stage for potentially “horrific” water shortages, insect infestations and wildfires this summer.
You may remember hearing that the managers of the Winter Olympics had to haul in hundreds of tons of snow for the athletes to slip and slide upon. Interesting harbinger of that “cooling” world the deniers claim is upon us. Think there’s no global warming? Ask a Canadian. Even better, ask this guy:
Despite everything you hear from climate idiots and naysayers, it was a mild winter here in the U.S. as well. All that snow in the Eastern regions of the nation were not signs of global cooling, but the result of warmer-than-usual temperatures. You see, warmer air can hold more moisture, thus potentially delivering more snow. On average, January, 2010 was the warmest such month on record in the U.S.
Global warming is an undeniable fact, and not subject to the results of opinion polls. Speaking of which, I saw one today that showed a larger number of Americans now doubt global warming. So, here’s how it goes: The deniers with the help of the media put out a huge cloud of misinformation, confusing the issue for ordinary people. Then, pollsters call and learn that more people doubt the facts of climate change (“facts” of which the ordinary person much less journalist or TV talking head has much if any awareness). It’s a classic example of misinformation at work, just as I outlined here in my essay titled “Science, Propaganda & Climate Change.”
The problem faced by global warming deniers is that baseless opinions and made-up “facts” cannot change reality. If you’re sitting on a hot stove, all the propaganda in the world is not going to convince you that your own personal rump roast is no longer “rare” but turning medium-well. Do you continue to listen to the blathering purveyors of disinformation, or get off before it’s time to stick a fork in it?
If as reported the Canadian winter was 4 degrees C. warmer than usual (that’s about 7 degrees F.), and precipitation was down as much as 60 percent in leading agricultural areas of the nation, what does it bode for the upcoming crop season? With little or no snow cover on fields, the soil will be dry. And if the warming trend continues into summer, it could be devastating for wheat and barley crops.
According to the news report, climatologist Phililps credits some of the warming to the El Nino cycle in the Pacific, but points to the melting of Arctic sea ice as a major influence. The article states [as of March 9]: “Spring has now arrived in many parts of Canada with cherry trees in full bloom on the West Coast, and Phillips says, ‘crocuses already blossoming in Labrador’.”
If Canadians can’t enjoy a real, old-fashioned, freeze-your -toes-off winter, who can? Well, soon, perhaps nobody. Stay tuned.