Snow, Ice and Climate Change

As predictable as it has been, it is discouraging to hear climate change denialists point to the massive amounts of ice and snow as evidence that “global warming” is imaginary. These are not folks who are conversant with science, so perhaps we should explain–very slowly and carefully–why global climate change, aka “global warming”–really is responsible for the bad weather.

As one climate scientist recently explained, there’s approximately four percent more water vapor in the atmosphere now than there was in the ’70s; that’s because the oceans and the air are warmer, and the added moisture in warmer air returns to earth as heavy rain and heavy snow.

This may not make sense to Glenn Beck or Sarah Palin, but most rational people can connect the dots, and understand why we need to limit carbon emissions. If we don’t, climate change will continue to cause extreme and unpredictable weather.

2 thoughts on “Snow, Ice and Climate Change

  1. How dare you muddy up the climate change debate with an infusion of logic and rationality! You will simply confuse those who already KNOW that global warming is a HOAX! It must be so…they hear it on Fox repeatedly.

  2. Sheila,
    The winter weather does not invalidate global warming nor does in validate it. Weather and climate are two different concepts and only climate should be considered when discussing global warming, or climate change as it is currently called.

    Weather is extremely difficult to predict just a few days into the future. Climate is even more difficult. Weather is a result of numerous meteorological factors that combine to create weather conditions in a certain area. The United States has experienced multiple winter storms over the years that are similar to what occurred just a few weeks ago. Those individual storms are not an indication of climatic changes and neither is the recent storm.

    Using a single weather event to validate or invalidate a climate change is poor science. By this logic, the warmer temperatures experienced this week (10-20 degrees above normal) would be considered proof of global warming. Yet temperatures just the week before were nearing record lows, thus disproving global warming.

    A few days of weather provides nothing for or against global warming.

Comments are closed.