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Thermometer
Within the last two weeks, seven people in America died from severe weather, but maybe not in the way you think.
A heatwave affecting Argentina has left at least seven people dead - most of them elderly - in the past week, officials say.

The heat has been compounded by power cuts, which have prevented many people from using air conditioning.

In Santiago del Estero and other northern provinces temperatures have soared to over 45C (113F).

Did I mention is was South America?  While the northern hemisphere has been suffering from the entirely made up, nope-never-heard-of-it-because-I-only-listen-to-things-that-match-my-preconceptions polar vortex, the other end of the world has been baking.

Please pause for a moment and turn your thermometer over.

Blistering heat that formed over the Nullarbor at the end of December and continues over parts of inland Australia smashed temperature records and was a "highly significant" event, the Bureau of Meteorology said.

In a special climate statement released late on Monday, the bureau said the latest heatwave, while less extensive and prolonged than the record-breaking hot spell to start 2013, was still a remarkable event.

"A major feature of the [latest] heatwave was the very large margin by which some records were broken, particularly in northern New South Wales," the bureau said.
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"At Narrabri [in NSW], the 47.8 (118 degrees Fahrenheit)degrees observed on 3 January surpassed the previous record by 3.6 degrees, the largest such margin at any Australian location with 40 or more years of data."

So, for the second year in a row, Australia is sweltering in record-breaking heat, with 34 cities besting all time highs. But hey, it's cold today. Where you live. So clearly, the glaciers are rolling.

How bad is the heat elsewhere? So hot it's raining bats.

Bats are dropping from trees, kangaroos are collapsing in the Outback and gardens are turning brown. While North America freezes under record polar temperatures, the southern hemisphere is experiencing the opposite extreme as heat records are being set in Australia after the hottest year ever.
And temperatures reached 122 degrees in several areas as it they closed on the all time record for anywhere in Australia.

Originally posted to Devil's Tower on Tue Jan 07, 2014 at 04:29 PM PST.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  "Global Warming" has been used interchangeably (4+ / 0-)

    with the term "global climate disruption" - often incorrectly, particularly since it's less syllables and more recognizable.

    That has to change.

    It's one aspect leading to, and underlying, global climate disruption. But it's too easy for the disruption deniers, special interests, malicious malefactors and simple idiots to use & abuse in their efforts to willfully & malicious sow confusion and, in effect, globally disrupt any efforts for responsible, civilized human adults to take any effective actions.

    We're experiencing increasing episodes of extreme weather all over the globe because "global warming" effects are destabilizing our existing climate patterns, resulting in world-wide climate disruption.

    The imbalance is due to human activity.

    If we don't act now, together, in a concerted effort to mitigate the effects, the climate will enter a chaotic period of extreme phenomena unlike anything humanity has ever seen.

    That's the message. Anybody trying to spin it is either incompetent, selfish, malicious, or a mind-numbing combination of all of the above.

    •  I no longer allow my students to turn in papers (6+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ER Doc, high uintas, delver, 417els, dewtx, Matt Z

      with the words "global warming".  They must use "climate change" or something similar or it is returned to them with notations to address why it is not to be used in my class.

      •  I would also require in your shoes (0+ / 0-)

        the clear distinction between climate and weather and those two are not interchangeable yet they try.

        Like "its so cold up here right now because of the vortex thus No climate change is occurring." interchanging weather paterns as proof of no climate change.

        The above "" is false  just showing that one is swapped for the other as proof of no change.

        In reality Climate change is driving the extreme weather we are seeing.   The weather we are witnessing is the results of the climate change due to human activities such as cutting down the forests, draining wetlands and changing of overall land use. Terra-forming our atmosphere through the release of gasses from our industrialized practices that shifts the chemical makeup in ways never before part of the natural ecosystem, thus driving climate Disruption.     The reason I used "climate disruption"  Is because what we are doing today to earth was NEVER part of the ecosystem processes in the planets entire history.

        There will never be a normal based on past earth cycles.  because of our actions.  We are the monkeys wrench in the works.     The new norm will be climate and weather "chaos"   Damage is already done. the only thing we have a chance at now is how severe it will be.

      •  Saying that "global warming" is a banned word (0+ / 0-)

        is you practicing scientific misconduct.

    •  You said: (0+ / 0-)
      That's the message. Anybody trying to spin it is either incompetent, selfish, malicious, or a mind-numbing combination of all of the above.
      That sentiment is a political statement and not a scientific determination.
  •  If there's one thing farmers rely on (5+ / 0-)

    It is some measure of weather predictability. Once global weirding makes all of growing season "Anything can happen day," the food supply is in big trouble and it's Katie bar the door.

    If you think you're too small to be effective, you've never been in the dark with a mosquito.

    by marykk on Tue Jan 07, 2014 at 08:59:14 PM PST

    •  YES, scary stuff (6+ / 0-)

      and somehow I don't think the whole, very large scale, industrial, intense way we do farming now will work all that well with climate disruption.

      It's just thinking out loud- but I think this will be F***ed up badly by severe climate fluctuations...

      "It is essential that there should be organization of Labor. Capital organizes & therefore Labor must organize" Theodore Roosevelt

      by Superpole on Sat Jan 11, 2014 at 06:10:38 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Has it been reported yet... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eeff, high uintas

    what the temperature was in New Jersey on the days Christie caused the traffic jams?

  •  When we were in Brisbane (11+ / 0-)

    Every night just as the sun was setting the bats would take off from the huge trees that were in the park near my daughter's apt.

    We would stand on the balcony to watch. First one would show up then a couple more, soon the sky would be black with them flying towards the river silently. It was awesome. As in it caused a feeling of awe.

    I am so bummed.

    And daddy won't you take me back to Muhlenberg County Down by the Green River where Paradise lay. Well, I'm sorry my son, but you're too late in asking Mister Peabody's coal train has hauled it away. John Prine

    by high uintas on Sat Jan 11, 2014 at 06:13:57 PM PST

  •  If you find yourself face to face (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ER Doc, Matt Z

    With a fool that claims that global warming is false because it's cold, ask them "Has the trend reversed now?"  And watch them put their tail between their legs.

    Republicans: Taking the country back ... to the 19th century

    by yet another liberal on Sat Jan 11, 2014 at 06:19:09 PM PST

  •  I knew I should have spent January on the equator. (0+ / 0-)

    It's 40 below zero mateys, and thar be shrinkage.

    by jwinIL14 on Sat Jan 11, 2014 at 06:29:33 PM PST

  •  I wonder if the Aussies (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    high uintas, NoMoreLies

    are rethinking their coal production rate? They were doing 450 million tons in 2010. Ah well, no reason they should be smarter than US but some one has got to be.

    “Society is like a stew. If you don’t keep it stirred up, you get a lot of scum on top,” Edward Abbey

    by Wood Gas on Sat Jan 11, 2014 at 06:35:33 PM PST

  •  It's Not Imminent Enough (4+ / 0-)

    People seem to be able to react only to immediate threats in order to take action.  The isolationists and other America first groups came together after Pearl Harbor to fight fascism.  Not unlike the good ole boys who joined the CSA in order to preserve their precious "way of life."
    It's why so many people kept quiet about McCarthy because they were made to fear the godless Soviets and speaking up for the accused was akin to treason.  They had seen what dictators can do.
    Americans could also see the way the Soviets had repressed the countries they claimed after the war and were sure it would happen here, if not for the ever vigilant tailgunner Joe.
    The effects of climate change are too small for the small minds who make the most asinine denials.  It doesn't hurt that the fossil fuel industry pays them to.
    Consider what's happening in another hemisphere?  My god, that's just so un-Amurikan. (And try to convince them that it's summer there if you want to see a real brain overload.)
    Only when there is an immediate, direct threat to their way of life, will there be anything done.  Not that it would be in time to do any good, but that is what we face.

    •  Look, Western Civ Has Evolved for a Thousand Yrs (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      delver, pdxteacher, NoMoreLies, pelagicray

      in conditions of expanding surpluses of resources and waste capacity during discovery of new worlds and of new means of exploiting old worlds. Our core traditions of restraint and of freedoms and rights, and the power relations within economy and society are based on this very long history.

      And the US grew up amid the most extreme surpluses, so it has some of the most extreme relaxations of responsibility to society on the part of individuals and enterprises.

      We don't have near the authority and less practical power to respond to this type of crisis, governed by a Constitution that was written a century behind its own times. It has essentially no conception that economic powers can pose any kind of threat that needs to be checked and balanced if only for the ordinary general welfare of people, let alone a global habitability crisis like this.

      We're in a situation where the majority of public and private leadership and the general electorate need to be saints, geniuses and prophets to make this system respond in the time and to the degree science says is required.

      We lost this fight in 1789 and probably generations earlier. Probably when the Enlightenment got underway.

      We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

      by Gooserock on Sat Jan 11, 2014 at 07:14:53 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  We are being manipulated (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        delver, NoMoreLies, pelagicray

        We could act, we could deal with what we have to deal with if we all were on the same page.

        If we had a WWII like national effort we could change so much, not everything but so much that we would feel less helpless. But, we are being played.

        Of course there is a "controversy" and of course there is no one clear path. It is in the interest of corporate power for us to never come together and begin to work at this.

        Our country isn't unique, the same interests are working on Australia, Africa, East Asia, the EU, everywhere. They are willing to drive the world to the brink and over the edge while they make money on whatever resource is scarce at any given time.

        Water is the future. Fuck plastics, Water.

        Are they building an orbiting world or something? How can they enjoy rubbing gold and greenbacks all over themselves if there is no future? I don't get it, but I see it.

        And daddy won't you take me back to Muhlenberg County Down by the Green River where Paradise lay. Well, I'm sorry my son, but you're too late in asking Mister Peabody's coal train has hauled it away. John Prine

        by high uintas on Sat Jan 11, 2014 at 09:15:43 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  think about what all of these places have in commo (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          sajiocity

          response to "not imminent enough"

          certain elite is the common factor in all the places you mentioned.

          The 1% who control 43% of the worlds assets. These are the people manipulating us in to doing nothing meaningful.

          Until these people die or are killed we have no chance.

          These people will not stop Their abusive practices under any other circumstance.

          They are the "rabid dogs"  They can not be cured of their afflictions of "total control mentality".

          Even if the world goes to hell they still have their hidey-holes to crawl into that they made with their vast wealth that they stole from the rest of us.

  •  CA just posted its driest year on record. (6+ / 0-)

    Jerry Brown. in turn, allowed fracking to proceed. It's a three-for-one: Profligate water waste, massive groundwater pollution, & increased air pollution from methane leaks.
    And Brown is supposed to be one of the "good guys".
    We are in deep shit & sinking fast.

    Warren is neither a Clintonesque triangulator nor an Obamaesque conciliator. She is a throwback to a more combative progressive tradition, and her candidacy is a test of whether that approach can still appeal to voters.-J. Toobin "New Yorker"

    by chuck utzman on Sat Jan 11, 2014 at 07:51:02 PM PST

    •  Today (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      high uintas

      In Seattle a massive thunderbolt struck.

      We didn't used to get thunderstorms and certainly not in January.

      The cloud formations changed noticeably around here starting a year or 2 ago.

      People are in severe denial.  It's beyond sad.

      Republicans: Taking the country back ... to the 19th century

      by yet another liberal on Sat Jan 11, 2014 at 08:00:20 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  People can not simply look at their window (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    delver, NoMoreLies

    to determine the extend or lack thereof of global weather patterns/climate change but for some reason people think they can. It is completely moronic to think that one can compare Monday's steamy rain storm and Thursday cold front in Anytown, USA, and then make a global presumption of the cause and nature of climate change....especially considering that the one making the prognosis is an accountant or a web designer or a Best Buy cashier.  

    When I hear this nonsense, I will ask them their educational background in science or meteorology or paleoclimatology, and that usually shuts them up.

  •  California and 2014 (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    high uintas, delver, NoMoreLies

    California in the last 2 years has had little rain.  Our water reservoirs are dangerously low.  So far, there has been little rain or snowfall.  Santa Cruz usually gets about 30 inches of rain per year; last year they got 5.

    Unless things change this summer will be a real test of water conservation.  Along with the dryness, there is the perverbial "fire" season that always accompanies these conditions.

    "It appears that both San Francisco and Los Angeles will end up experiencing their driest calendar years on record. The previous record for San Francisco downtown was 9.00” in 1917 (POR back to Nov. 1849) and for Los Angeles downtown 4.08” in 1953 (with a POR back to 1877). It is simply astounding by how large a margin San Francisco will beat its previous record (a margin of about 40%!) and this for a period of record going back over 160 years, one of the oldest continuous records for precipitation in the U.S."  (Wunderground.com)

    We know that weather and climate change have very different meanings; however, climate change in California is quite noticeable.

    •  I can contest to that fact despite being in MN (0+ / 0-)

      I recently signed a petition to block a water pipeline linking our great lakes in Minnesota to los vagas and California so they can steal our water for their water mismanagement. such as fracking and farming a desert.

      Want water conservation? STOP ALL FRACKING. stop trying to grow green mono lawns in desert environment. plant vegetation that belongs in a dry environment example cactus.

      Conservation in water is also conservation of other things like fewer children, fewer children means less strain on water sources.

      fewer luxuries also = less water use.  water was most-likely used at some point in that luxuries life "dust to dust cycle".

      conservations  making smaller homes or more people per square foot of homes = less water use in both making of the shelter and the maintaining of said shelter.

      Shared transportation = less water use due to the excessive water needed to make and maintain the transportation.

      Point is the water shortage is 50/50  the lack of water/ the excessive use of water due to improper delegation of water use.

      what california is suffer is not being able to say NO to bad behaviors in regards to using water.

      example there is better places to grow alfalfa than in a desert where your wasting water trying to support an ecosystem that is not meant to exist in a desert environment..

  •  Little excuse for not getting it: (0+ / 0-)

    1. Analogous terminology like "market volatility" versus "trends" already long in use for the stock market etc.
    2. The air was pulled all the way from the North Pole (and yeah way to go Al Roker!) so of course it was cold. The warming is about averages.
    3. One irony: if anyone says "why did the warming stop in the 90s (well not so clear that it did) you can say, "gotcha - thanks for admitting that the warming was at least going on ....

  •  Hannity's climate denial game: (0+ / 0-)

    A few days ago Hannity had denialist Christopher Horner (e.g. "Red Hot Lies: How Global Warming Alarmists Use Threats, Fraud, and Deception
    to Keep You Misinformed") paired with a woman defender of AGW (don't remember her name) affiliated with Al Gore. Horner put forth nonsense such as that GW was "disproved by observation" as if a cold snap all the way from the North Pole meant that averages or other parts of the world didn't matter. Another fraud was the pretense that AGW was some recent theory, ironically cooked up by Enron and other elites to deny continuing prosperity to other nations - completely forgetting the discovery of the IR absorption of CO2 and development of the theory and seminal publication in 1893 by Svante Arrhenius outlining the modern concept.

    But most interesting was the woman for the opposition. I hate to critique her but she was high strung and kept interrupting and repeating and clearly this is part of Hannity's MO: deliberately picking liberal counterparts in debates who will grate and confirm stereotypes etc. She didn't know how to refute well, to note Arrhenius etc., it was a valiant effort but won't help the cause.

  •  This reminds me of a joke (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    NoMoreLies

    A man, trying to commit suicide, has his head in the oven and his feet in the freezer.

    On average, he's comfortable.

  •  The northern hemisphere suffered?! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    maryabein, NoMoreLies

    Oh well - we had record temperatures here in Germany, too. Way up into the 60ies (15 to 18 degrees Celsius). Above zero!

    December mean temperatures were ca. 3 degrees warmer than the average, January so far ca. 5 degrees. Pleasant, if weird.

    On the other hand, the UK more or less drowned in heavy storms with rainfall and snow...

    Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away. -- Philip K. Dick

    by RandomGuyFromGermany on Sat Jan 11, 2014 at 11:37:17 PM PST

  •  Global Heat Redistribution (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    maryabein, delver, NoMoreLies

    Thermal Dynamics/Heat Transfer is primarily focused about the Work equations of Energy and the transferrence of said work in open and closed systems resulting in viable and useless energy lost in the form of Heat.

    Climates rely on tolerance ranges [-10,....+10] for instance, where the temperature through any given season has a temperature variance within said range.

    These ranges are maintained through a delicate ecosystem where Work In == Work out has Heat Loss that allows for life to be self-sustaining.

    Heat is measured from -273.15 degrees Kelvin to Infinity [Space is -273.15 degrees Kelvin]

    Heat is not synonymous with HOT.

    When seasonal temperatures fall below or above the temperature tolerance range we begin to experience Global Climate Change as this Mechanical Engineer calls Global Heat Redistribution.

    This redistribution produces zones that far fall below and above their norms resulting is extreme changes in moisture, temperature and thus damages the ecosystem's ability to recycle in historically predictable patterns.

    Extended periods [decades] of this behavior creates and accelerated exponential curve of decay destabilizing the climate and all that inhabit it.

    Global Warming accelerates patterns normally that take hundreds of thousands to millions of years to see develop and condenses the time frame by orders of magnitude.

    Whether the Earth's temperature [on averge] increased by 5 degrees over the past decaded or decreased by 5 degrees over the past decade, these increases far exceed expected variance of global average temperatures. You extend these patterns out for decades and you have the Earth accelerating either an early ice age [leaving us decimated] or an atmosphere at temperatures well above what is recycleable on Earth for thousands or tens of thousands of years, if not more.

    For every person who mocks these Chemical Systems I truly don't even have to ask if they know how to balance Chemical Equations or how to convert grams to moles, etc., because I know they know nothing about the sciences involved, especially Chemistry and Physics.

    We humans have a hard time accepting responsibilty for our own arrogance. It's time to grow up and work with the Planet, not against it.

    •  to support your point with example in layman terms (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mdriftmeyer

      how we arrogantly change land use

      cutting of the asian rainforest to be replaced with palm trees for the palm oil for biofuels.  changes the chemistry and physics of how the ecosystem functions.

      •  Solid example (0+ / 0-)

        Combine that with the decimation of European and South American Forrests/Rain Forrests to the disasters in Africa and this world only accelerates its own demise, all in the name of the Industrial Revolution.

        Instead of being `smart' they took a rape and pillage approach to natural resources.

        Without them we destroy that cycle of keeping the environment balanced.

  •  Gbush wrapped US in cellophane so no warming here! (0+ / 0-)

    U think its a coincidence that GBush and Jesus sound alike? Or that a GBush has dominated God'sOnlyParty for over 30 years (what u think Reagan ran things?)

    Its not some nefarious scheme to bring plutocratic fascist theocracy to America.  It's 'God's Plan'!...

    and by that I mean Corporate America and The New Aristocracy's plan.  After all, someone's got to cull the herd and get us back to the True God, Mammon.

  •  Time to start a new office pool. (0+ / 0-)

    To where will we move the US Capital after the Potomac floods the city? I suspect this event will catch many of the deniers off guard, especially those in Congress, as they will not be convinced of the reality of global climate change until the steps of the Capital are awash in brackish water and blue crabs.

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