Wednesday, September 01, 2010

shifting into second gear

--climate happenings are at the data bank--

After coming back from Asia, I screened the data flow about climate change and wrote up two posts on the data bank, one two weeks ago, another over the past few days. Point, as always, is to find a gestalt, of what's been happening to Mama Gaia over the summer. Backdrop of this gestalt is the just published NOOA report, the upshot being that 2009 was warmer than 2008, that 2009 was one of the top 10 warmest years on record, the 2000s (the decade from 2000 to 2009) was the warmest decade on record, and that 2009 was the 19th consecutive year that the world's glaciers have been losing mass.

This year we've seen an amazingly extensive heatwave covering the entire northern hemisphere, blistering Russia and blanketing Eurasia from coast to coast, from Ireland and Britain to Taiwan and Japan. Concurrently the heatwave set temperature records from Las Vegas to New York. Has a heatwave of this extent ever happened before? From new year to late summer, we've also seen flood extremes, worst in Pakistan, and violent seasonal swings, worst in Mongolia.

Since starting this blog, I've felt like one of those surreal archivists in a sci-fi novel by Clifford P Simak, or a witness to a world that would give birth to a Walter M. Miller-like Canticle for Leibowitz. And now I'm getting the feeling climate change is shifting into second gear.

P.S.: sorry to say so, because I wish speedy recovery to the Gulf shrimpers, but Gulf of Mexico shrimp right now taste like dish soap, which is presumably the flavor of Corexit. They also give you a stomach ache, which is no surprise, because the dispersant is toxic.

Seventy-five months left.

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