Global warming expert: Climate change not a factor in recent California wildfires


HAS LITTLE TO DO WITH IT. WHILE SEARCHERS WERE LOOKING FOR
VICTIMS OF THE CAMP FIRE AND
SURVIVORS WERE REELING FROM
THEIR EXPERIENCE, GOVERNOR JERRY
BROWN POINTED TO CLIMATE CHANGE
AND GLOBAL WARMING AS FACTORS.>>THE BEST SCIENCE IS TELLING
US THAT DRYNESS, WARMTH,
DROUGHT, ALL OF THOSE THINGS ARE
GOING TO INTENSIFY. KEVIN: SO DID THE MAYOR OF
SACRAMENTO.>>WE NEED TO LOOK NO FURTHER
THAN WHAT HAPPENED AN HOUR AND
HALF FROM HERE IN BUTTE COUNTY
AND HERE AT ICE — AND PARADISE
TO KNOW THE PERIL OF NOT
AGGRESSIVELY ADDRESSING CLIMATE CHANGE COULD — CHANGE GOOD
KEVIN: BUT A PROFESSOR OF
ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCES WHO
RESEARCHES GLOBAL WARMING AND
CLIENT CHAINS — CLIMATE CHANGE
SAYS THAT MOTHER PLAYED A ROLE IN THE CAMP FIRE.>>IN A CENTURY, IT MIGHT
CONTRIBUTE TO FIRES. UNTIL NOW, IT IS NATURAL
VARIABILITY AND NATURAL EFFECTS. IF YOU LOOK AT THE FACTUAL
INFORMATION, IT REALLY DOESN’T
APPEAR THAT GLOBAL WARMING HAS
MUCH TO DO WITH THE CAMP FIRE OR
THE ONE COUNTRY FIRES FROM LAST
YEAR. KEVIN: THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT
CLASSIFIES GLOBAL WARMING AS ONE
ASPECT OF CLIMATE CHANGE, AND
CLIMATE CHANGE IS MEASURED
THROUGH CHANGES IN WIND
PATTERNS, RAIN OR SNOW FALL, AND TEMPERATURE. FOR INSTANCE, ON THE DAY THE
CAMP FIRE STARTED, THE WINDS
WERE MEASURED AT 32 MILES PER
HOUR WITH GUSTS UP TO 52. WHEN YOU LOOK BACK AT THE WIND
RECORDS, THERE HAVE BEEN SIMILAR
NORTHEASTERLY WINDS 508 TIMES IN
THE PAST 15 YEARS. HE ALSO SAYS THE LATEST RESEARCH
SHOWS CHANGES IN AIR PRESSURE
WILL RE — WEAKEN SANTA ANA AND
DIABLO WHEN’S GOOD — WINDS.>>PROBABLY THEY WILL WEAKEN
UNDER GLOBAL WARMING. KEVIN: ANOTHER ASPECT IS
DRYNESS. HE LOOKED AT DATA FROM A WEATHER
STATION THAT SHOWED FEW MOISTURE
CHANGES OVER THE PAST FIVE
YEARS. HE SAID THE PATTERN IS CLEAR,
FUELS ARE NOT GETTING
PROGRESSIVELY DRIER, AND EVEN IF
TEMPERATURES ARE RISING, IT
WOULD NOT MATTER BECAUSE
CALIFORNIA IS HISTORICALLY DRY IN THE FALL.>>PEOPLE THROW THESE HANDWAVING
ARGUMENTS ABOUT, THE GLOBAL
WARMING WILL MAKE THINGS WARMER
AND DRIER, AND THAT MAY BE TRUE,
THAT IT IS PLENTY DRY ENOUGH TO
BURN RIGHT NOW SO IT IS NOT A FACTOR. KEVIN: AS FOR RAIN, HE SAYS DATA
GOING BACK 90 YEARS OF SHOWS
AUGUST TO OCTOBER PRECIPITATION
IN THE CAMP FIRE AREA IS
TYPICALLY LIGHT WITH WHITE
VARIATION AND NO OBVIOUS TREND.>>IF YOU PLOT THE PRECIPITATION
FOR THE FALL, WHICH I HAVE DONE
ON MY BLOG, IT HAS NOT CHANGED
MUCH OVER THE LAST 30, 50 YEARS. THERE’S NO REAL INDICATION THAT,
FOR INSTANCE, SEPTEMBER AND
OCTOBER RAINFALL, HAS DROPPED BY
A SIGNIFICANT AMOUNT IN THE LAST
SEVERAL DECADES. KEVIN: HE SAYS POINTING TO
GLOBAL WARMING OR CLIMATE CHANGE
TAKES ATTENTION AWAY FROM OTHER
ISSUES THAT COULD HAVE AN
IMMEDIATE IMPACTS.>>WE HAVE TO MOVE PEOPLE AWAY
FROM THE WILDLAND INTERFACE. PEOPLE ARE LIVING WHERE THEY
SHOULD NOT LIVE. WE NEED BETTER WARNING SYSTEMS. I COULD KEEP GOING ON, BUT THERE
ARE A LOT OF THINGS WE NEED TO
DO THAT COULD SAVE HUGE NUMBERS
OF LIVES AND PROPERTY NOW. IF YOU BLAME IT ALL ON GLOBAL
WARM

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