Climate Anxiety Is A Real Affliction Or Something

It’s probably closer to adults getting anxious over ghosts. After talking about a big rain event in California, 45 years ago, causing her property line to virtually vanish, leaving a big drop down the mountain side for her home, we learn

That led to anxious nights with images in my mind of our house sliding down the slope while I slept. Although our house never went over the edge, those feelings of anxiety sometimes recur during big storms.

Well, yeah, weather can worry some people.

A little research reveals that the worst storm ever recorded in California struck on Christmas Eve of 1861. The rains continued almost nonstop until February 1862, soaking California with almost four times its normal rainfall, and creating enormous brown lakes on the normally dry plains of Southern California. In the Sierra Nevada, the deluges filled rivers, transforming them into raging torrents that swept away entire communities and gold mining settlements in the foothills.

Wait, I thought that never happened before CO2 hit 350ppm?

Then there’s drought, and I recall living through the severest drought on record for many Western states, which happened during the winter of 1976-1977. In California, this period is known as “the year with no rain.”

That would be during the time when everyone was worried about a coming ice age. Anyway, the writer wonders what the “normal climate” of California is (hint, there is no norm)

Today, I am one of a small cohort of earth scientists trying to answer that question, by searching for evidence of past droughts and floods, wildfires, periods of warmth and cold and so on, over the geologic past — the period before humans kept records in the West.

If we step back and view our climate history over a very long time period — say, hundreds to thousands of years — we begin to see the forest for the trees. We can pick out extreme events and how often they occur. This natural history is written not in paper and ink, but in the earth itself, in sediment, stone, trees, ice. Like investigators at a crime scene, we try to piece together seemingly random and unrelated clues about our past climate, and eventually, we begin to see patterns.

And this can make her and others “anxious”, especially when they find that the 1862 flood was not unusual, and happens every 100-200 years, and can be even bigger. That there were at least two prolonged droughts in the Southwest US lasting over a century each, around 650-1,100 years ago (that would be a time which would include both cool and warm periods). Decades long dry periods are normal. Seems like climate likes to do stuff, eh? Wait, here it comes

It’s unsettling to think about the implications of extreme climate events and the reality that global warming may make severe weather much more frequent and even more extreme.

These days, of course, my adult mind can provide diversions, and some people are getting quite skillful at outright denial. This might alleviate unease in the short run, but I know that the best long-term solution is for scientists to prepare everyone living in our Western states for a future of unpredictable and extreme climate change.

It could be that B. Lynn Ingram is refering to natural global warming and climate change, but I seriously doubt it. She has all the data that these things have happened before, but she seems to want to take the Warmist proposition that “climate change” will make things worse. Sigh.

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7 Comments

Comment by jl
2013-12-16 19:54:37

I got real anxious myself in Dec.13th, as that was five years to the day from when Al Gore said that the Arctic could be ice-free. Oh, sorry- I guess he said it in 2007 and in 2009, also. That must be why it’s called climate astrology “It’ll happen in the future, don’t worry- I’m sure of it…” Not to worry- the Arctic ice sheet grew almost 50% this year.

 
Comment by Jeffery
2013-12-16 21:03:58

I get real anxious when bloggers copy and paste but don’t cite their sources.

I know that Dr. Ingram is a Professor of Geography at one of the most prestigious universities in the world, but throw us a bone and tell us from where you copied her words, please. Anyway, what would a Professor of Geography specializing in paleoclimate studies know about paleoclimate studies?

You also made a couple of false/misleading statements.

“Wait, I thought that never happened before CO2 hit 350ppm?” I know you mean that as vacuous hyperbole, but no serious climate realist believes that weather extremes occur only when CO2 levels exceed 350 ppm. The prediction is that the extremes will become MORE extreme and MORE frequent.

“Anyway, the writer wonders what the “normal climate” of California is (hint, there is no norm).” Actually the climate has been pretty stable since the end of the last ice age. Have you ever wondered why human civilization only developed in the past several thousand years? Of course you haven’t. Why didn’t human civilizations evolve 50,000 years ago (hint, it’s not because of Allah or Jesus)? Human civilization has developed, existed and evolved during a period of stable climate, the Holocene, the current interglacial. You do not understand how far outside the narrow temperature range of the Holocene we are venturing.

 
Comment by Done With Winter Gumballs Subscribed to comments via email
2013-12-16 21:37:33

I know you mean that as vacuous hyperbole, but no serious climate realist believes that weather extremes occur only when CO2 levels exceed 350 ppm.

Ummm.. yeah they do J. Don’t throw your own hyperbole. Why do you think they set that 350ppm threshold for “recovery”? Why do you think they claim, as you have done as well, that only since our CO2 has risen over the last 60 years has our weather now only gotten extreme. Their, and yours, claim is that these weather events are unique to our post-350ppm climate.

Actually the climate has been pretty stable since the end of the last ice age.

Wait. Aren’t you the one that has been yammering about the ever devastating effects of our vastly changing climate due to human-produced CO2? We’ve been telling you all that our climate is rather steady and is in a real great position for the expansion of humanity. It is your cult that believes our climate right now is deadly to humans and ecology.

You do not understand how far outside the narrow temperature range of the Holocene we are venturing.

AAaaahhhh.. there’s the J we know. Come back and even ignores his own statements. Claims a steady climate and then claims current climate is way outside the range that we are currently in.

So J, are we in a new epoc if we are no longer in Holocene?

 
Comment by Jl
2013-12-16 21:44:23

No, human civilization has developed, existed and I evolved during a period of changing climate, not stable climate. It’s always changing, as you know. Funny how humans evolved with little knowledge or technology from the last ice-age, and did it all even without paying carbon taxes! How did they do it? But now, with superior knowledge and adaptability, we’re all going to die.

 
Comment by Jeffery
2013-12-17 07:45:16

jl,

http://www.sciencemag.org/content/339/6124/1198.abstract

“The climate has been warming since the industrial revolution, but how warm is climate now compared with the rest of the Holocene? Marcott et al. (p. 1198) constructed a record of global mean surface temperature for more than the last 11,000 years, using a variety of land- and marine-based proxy data from all around the world. The pattern of temperatures shows a rise as the world emerged from the last deglaciation, warm conditions until the middle of the Holocene, and a cooling trend over the next 5000 years that culminated around 200 years ago in the Little Ice Age. Temperatures have risen steadily since then, leaving us now with a global temperature higher than those during 90% of the entire Holocene.”

http://ourchangingclimate.wordpress.com/2013/03/19/the-two-epochs-of-marcott/

Hagelaars plots the temperature proxies from the depths of the last ice age until present (extended to 2100 based on likely emission scenarios). That level spot in the middle is the Holocene.

 
Comment by Done With Winter Gumballs Subscribed to comments via email
 
Comment by Jl
2013-12-17 10:19:33

J-As shown above, that was de-bunked. But on a larger note, you’re a funny guy. Your first post said that “civilization…evolved during a stable climate period.” I said, no, it happened during a changing climate, as it is always changing. You then rebut by……agreeing with me: “a rise until the middle of the Holocene, a cooling over the next 5000 years, then about 200years ago a warming trend…” Yes, just what I said.

 

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