08/09/2012 Leave a comment
‘You cannot prove that burning fossil fuel caused this heat wave.’ says our gasman.
We can, however, find correlations and calculate the odds. Which would you rather do, walk through a field of land mines where there is a 1 in 10 chance of setting off an explosion, or where there is a 1 in 300 chance of explosion?
Well, 1 in 300 is the odds we had 35 years ago of getting these deadly, crop blistering heat waves, and now the odds are 1 in 10, according to a new NASA statistical study.
Scientists began measuring and correlating the amount of carbon dioxide released by burning oil, coal and natural gas with rising temperatures sixty years ago. Now 40 different models have been created of the evidence and causes of the changing climate, and they all agree that human activities are causing the planet to overheat, with the main offender being the burning of fossil fuels. On the NASA site you can see the changing levels of CO2, global temperature, sea level, land ice and polar ice cover.
So the relevant question is not whether any single weather event is ‘caused’ by global warming, but how the odds have changed, and how they are likely to change in the future.
An article on this report includes a slide show of 53 things that ‘Climate Change Just Might Ruin.’