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Doug Hoffman: Scientifically Ignorant, Tabloid “Climatologists” Blame Sandy On Climate Change

Doug Hoffman, The Resilient Earth

In a mad rush to prove who can put out the most inane press release, various warm-mongers, news hacks and climate alarmists have gone on a predictable spree, trying to blame Hurricane Sandy and the resulting disaster in the US Northeast on CO2 levels. Who are these clowns? Have none of these empty headed blatherskites noticed that it has been more than seven years since a major hurricane struck the US, the longest such period since the Civil War? Evidently not, since they continue to spew unscientific twaddle and the news media continues to lap it up like a dog eating its own vomit.

Almost falling over each other to put out the most outrageous statement, the world’s warmist agitators have filled the air waves, news papers and social media sites with an avalanche of anti-knowledge. Our friend Marc Morano, over at Climate Depot, has a sizable list of comments on both sides of this jerkfest.  Here are a few examples:

    • @ClimateSilence posted on twitter — #Sandy speaks: “All U can be sure of is that the climate of past 20 & more centuries is gone. I am part of new normal.”
    • Warmist Mike Tidwell, the founder of Chesapeake Climate Action, reportedly said: “We are all from New Orleans now. Climate change…has made 100 million Americans virtually as vulnerable to catastrophe as victims of Hurricane Katrina were 7 years ago”
    • Reported in The Hill, Meghan McCain, daughter of Sen. John McCain said: “So are we still going to go with climate change not being real fellow republicans [sic]?”
    • Even Al Gore crawled out from under his rock to blog that: “Scientists tell us that by continually dumping 90 million tons of global warming pollution into the atmosphere every single day, we are altering the environment in which all storms develop. As the oceans and atmosphere continue to warm, storms are becoming more energetic and powerful… Dirty energy makes dirty weather.”

This is the same type of hysterical, infectious ignorance that caused people to blame all sorts of misfortune on evil spirits, witches and anyone with different religious beliefs back in the Dark Ages. It is irrefutable proof that irrationality has infected climate science. Not content to report the reality of the situation, many “news” blogs turned to photo-shopped images—some obviously more believable than others.

Photo-shopped images helped feed the frenzy.

But Sandy was something unprecedented, right? After all, all the news outlets said so! It was a “mega-storm” on FOX, “the storm of the century” on the Weather Channel, and “Frankenstorm” everywhere in between (there is nothing like a clever name to get a story repeated ad nauseum by the media, who have never had an original thought of their own). In fact, there have been many storms far more powerful than Sandy, which, by the time it hit the coast of the U.S. was barely a category 1 hurricane.

ICSC Science Advisory Board member, Dr. Tim Ball, environmental consultant and former climatology professor, explained that Sandy’s upgrading to even this level was the result of one measurement from a hurricane hunter aircraft extrapolated down the surface, not a direct measurement of the wind speed at the surface.

Track of major hurricanes, 1951-1960. Source NOAA.

Others on the skeptical side of the climate debate have been quick to debunk the climate change/hurricane Sandy link. Meteorologist Joe Bastardi commented on US hurricanes from 1951-1960, back before CO2 allegedly started causing hurricanes. Note six hurricanes in two years, including five majors, shown in the plot above from NOAA.

Using data from NOAA, the folks over at Real Science put together this interesting graph, showing that the US has always been vulnerable to hurricanes. “Eighty-six percent of US hurricane strikes occurred with CO2 below Hansen’s safe level of 350 PPM,” they reported.

Even the minions of the IPCC have denounced the attempts to link climate change to Sandy. ICSC Science Advisory Board member, Dr. Madhav L. Khandekar, an “Expert Reviewer” of the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report (AR4), said that claims such as McKibben’s are “absolute bunko.” Dr. Khandekar explains how tropical cyclones (called hurricanes in the North Atlantic) are not on the rise worldwide. Global tropical cyclone Accumulated Cyclone Energy(ACE) shows that world wide storm activity is not increasing and has, in fact, declined in recent years. The following graph illustrates this point:

Global tropical cyclone Accumulated Cyclone Energy(ACE)

So even the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) now says that there is little or no science backing claims that anthropogenic global warming is responsible for current extreme weather events. Dr. Roger Pielke Jr., a professor at the University of Colorado’s Center for Science and Technology Policy, agrees that such links are not scientifically based. Pielke also asserts that there are no signs of a trend in any direction in hurricane activity. “We’ve done long-term trends with respect to hurricane damage in the United States, and it’s very safe to say that regardless of how [Sandy] plays out, there’s a century-long time series with no trend in it — and that’s in damage, the number of landfalls, or the intensity of storms at landfall.”

The truth about hurricanes and North America is that they are a natural part of the environment. In fact, without the occasional landfall by a major storm the southern US falls into drought. From the middle of the east coast through Florida and around the Gulf of Mexico to Texas, hurricanes are not just normal, they are necessary. Tropical storms are North America’s equivalent to the more reliable monsoon rains of Asia.

This link is born out by the recent sever drought conditions in the southern states. Writing in the Wall Street Journal, Professor Pielke said: “While it’s hardly mentioned in the media, the U.S. is currently in an extended and intense hurricane “drought.” The last Category 3 or stronger storm to make landfall was Wilma in 2005. The more than seven years since then is the longest such span in over a century.”

Hopefully, the immediate and widespread denial of claimed linkage between global warming and Hurricane Sandy will stop the spread of such unscientific nonsense. Take note of the names of those who have given voice to this lie—Michael Bloomberg, Al Gore, Bette Midler, Michael Moore, Chris Matthews and so many others—and remember that they have shown themselves to be idiots. Fools like these would take a huge natural disaster like Sandy and make it worse.

Their motivation is, of course, political. The climate is so large and the link to human activity so tenuous that any and all of mankind’s transgressions can be blamed on anthropogenic global warming. If further proof of the political nature of the warmist cause is needed, witness that a heckler interrupted Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney during a rally Thursday in Virginia Beach, Va., shouting “climate change caused Sandy.” The heckler was roundly booed by the crowd and escorted away from the event by Secret Service agents.

Another photo-shopped picture – fake news, fake causes.

It is amazing to survey the arguments used by climate alarmists since the specter of anthropogenic global warming first emerged a few decades back. We have gone from global warming to climate change and now to weather. Bad weather to be sure, but nothing unprecedented, unnatural or unusual. Perhaps this latest outburst of puerile pap from climate change know-nothings will be the final straw, the one that brings down the house of cards that is the climate alarmist movement.

Be safe, enjoy the interglacial and stay skeptical.

We here at The Resilient Earth would like to ask those who can to give something to the Hurricane Sandy disaster relief effort. All of the political hype cannot change the fact that Sandy has been a real disaster for millions of people who could use our help. Please donate to the Red Cross or Salvation Army.

The Resilient Earth, 3 November 2012