Bearing Witness to Climate Change 2017

August, 2017

The Alaskan arctic tundra and permafrost is thawing at an alarming rate. It threatens to release vast new amounts of carbon into the atmosphere, accelerating climate change past a point of no return. The buildup of methane under the thawing Russian tundra exploded creating a hole in the ground that looked like a meteor strike.

Harvard Researchers have released a report that show Exxon Mobil intentionally misled the public and its own shareholders on the risks of climate change. Exxon had conducted its own climate research for decades acknowledging man-made climate change due to the burning of fossil fuels was real. However, publicly, Exxon funded research and published advertorials which challenged the science of climate change.

Th US experiences two massive hurricanes. One of them is the most severe hurricane to ever traverse the Atlantic outside of the Caribbean. They strike Houston and Florida, leaving widespread devastation behind. Houston has now suffered through 3 500-year floods in the last three years. the lack of zoning and sprawl into wetlands of Texas made a natural disaster a man-made one. The poor and elderly are hit the hardest, paying the price for climate change, typically living and working in the most vulnerable locations.

Climate scientists agree that hurricanes are becoming more frequent, stronger and wetter because of climate change. Warmer oceans produce more energy to feed hurricanes. Warmer atmospheric temperatures hold more moisture. It’s pretty basic science. Meanwhile the Trump administration and other climate deniers revoke Obama rules that required infrastructure investments consider the effects of climate change.

2016 was the third year in a row to set a record for highest global average surface temperature. The NYT reports that nine of the top 10 years for extreme rain events in the US occurred i the last 10 years.

October 2017

The EPA scraps the Clean Power Plan that was to limit carbon emissions from coal-fired power plants. Pruitt says the war on coal is over. Yes, it has been replaced by a war on the planet and a war on his grandchildren.

Pruitt installs sound proof office at EPA headquarters to he can talk in private, with industry of course.

A 10th storm in the Atlantic becomes a hurricane, the first time in a hundred years.

California burns from a weather bomb of hurricane force winds and dry land.

The Interior Dept. wants to delay a rule to regulate methane as the climate change greenhouse gas it is.

The EPA blocks its scientists from talking about climate change.

New research suggests that ocean levels could rise much higher and faster than originally thought.

November, 2017

The month begins with the release of the US National Climate Assessment which makes it abundantly clear that human influenced climate change is happening and the consequences are substantial. A spokesperson for the White House says the climate is always changing.

In a Bonn global climate meeting the Trump administration touts the value of coal. A report comes out that shows carbon emissions have started rising again after a two year flat curve. The use of coal in China is blamed.

 

 

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