Relying heavily on the excellent resource known as Dr. Jeff Master’s Wunderblog and a few other sources, I’ve compiled a quick list of a few of the highlights of weather events related to global warming in the news these days, in preparation for this weekend’s radio show “The Science of Global Warming: Science V Denialsim” on Atheists Talk #126, with Kevin Zelnio and John Abraham.
In recent months we have experienced the largest fire on record in Arizona, the largest fire in the history of New Mexico, the most extreme precipitation in the US ever, the hottest day in hell aka the Texas Panhandle,
The most expensive severe storm period, in terms of insured losses in US history was the US Severe THundrstorm Outbreak of May 20-27th according to the insurance industry. If you pay home owners insurance in the US midlands, your insurance went up (or your coverage went down) over the last few years because of unprecedented damage due to storms over the previous decade. You can probably expect a similar or greater increase in insurance over the next couple of years as the insurance industry struggles to keep up (and maintain a high profit, of course). In one severe storm event (or series of events, really) 11,000 people were evacuated in North Dakota due to fooding. (See also this.)
the 6th warmest may on land and 11th by sea according to NOAA including the third lowest extent of Arctic Ice which appears to be in record retreat. Overall we have experienced, globally, the most exterme weather since the early 19th century. June was also extremely hot and stormy, and may have been the seventh warmest June on record.
- The combined global land and ocean average surface temperature for June 2011 was the seventh warmest on record at 16.08°C (60.94°F), which is 0.58°C (1.04°F) above the 20th century average of 15.5°C (59.9°F).
- June 2011 was the 316th consecutive month with a global temperature above the 20th century average. The last month with below-average temperature was February 1985.
- The June worldwide average land surface temperature was 0.89°C (1.60°F) above the 20th century average of 13.3°C (55.9°F)—the fourth warmest on record.
- The global average ocean surface temperature was the 10th warmest June on record, at 0.47°C (0.85°F) above average. Neither El Niño nor La Niña conditions were present during June 2011. According to NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center, these ENSO-neutral conditions are expected to continue into the Northern Hemisphere fall 2011.
- The first half of 2011 (January–June) was the 11th warmest on record for the combined global land and ocean surface temperature. Separately, the worldwide average ocean temperature was also the 11th warmest January–June and the worldwide average land temperature was the 12th warmest such period.
Multiple Hollywood epic film size sandstorms engulfed Phoenix and some are now predicting that this sort of massive sandstorm will become more common in the future. Famine in Somalia. Deadly US heat wave. And look at this. This is just the records set on July 22nd!