Dishonest Donald Denies The Ongoing California Drought as Lake Mead Hits New All-Time Record Low

We now find that under the current amount of warming, the probability of a severe drought year has approximately doubled. — Park Williams, assistant research professor at Columbia University’s Earth Institute

There is no California Drought. — Donald Trump

The drought is not over. — Association of California Water Agencies

*****

An understanding of basic reality. Accepting that reality as true. And responding to that reality in a mature, adult manner. One would think that these qualities would serve as the given assumed prerequisites necessary for someone to serve as President of the United States. But in these most basic of qualifications for sanity, honesty and much less for serving as any kind of leader of worth and effectiveness, Donald Trump has demonstrated that he is both sorely and entirely lacking.

For contrary to the lack-reality talk-talk of the republican party’s most recent great embarrassment, an estimated 34 million of California’s 38.8 million population still suffered under drought conditions as of Thursday last week. This figure, provided by the US Drought Monitor, marked the most recent extension of a drought that has lasted since 2013 in a state that in the entire period of 2007 through 2016 has only experienced two drought-free years. One year of which — 2015 — was the driest in all of the state’s long history. A set of facts that anyone concerned with the health of this country, much less someone running for the position of the highest office in the land, should be intimately familiar with.

California Drought

(According to the US Drought Monitor, 86 percent of California is now suffering under drought conditions. Conditions that have dominated the state since 2013 and that during 2015 inflicted the most intensely dry conditions California has ever experienced. Image source: US Drought Monitor.)

Climate change is the primary driver of the extreme southwestern drying which has had such a severe impact on California. As the Arctic has warmed, the Jet Stream has shifted northward taking with it a procession of moisture-bearing weather systems. The result is that the probability of extreme drought in the region has at least doubled when compared to the middle 20th Century.

Though strong El Ninos typically bring increased levels of rainfall to California, this year’s powerful event failed to provide even normal rainfall over more than half of the state. This failure of rains during a year when above average precipitation would be expected is but one more blow in a long, long series. But worse is likely still to come as a La Nina — a condition traditionally associated with dry weather in California — is on the way. And further on down the pipe, more warming due to the human burning of fossil fuels that Trump supports means that drought conditions will only continue to intensify unless a miraculous effort is somehow undertaken. Under these stark conditions, many observers are now wondering if the California drought will ever come to an end.

Lake Mead Hits New Record Low

Upstream along the Colorado River, there’s still more to be concerned about. For a waterway that 25 million people depend upon is now entering its 16th year of drought. The river feeds one of the US’s largest reservoirs — Lake Mead. But the giant, man-made lake keeps hitting record low levels year after year. A great white ring shows the previous high water mark from decades past over the now greatly shrunken reserve. Water officials are today relegated to making increasingly dubious assurances that the reservoir will be able to meet needs next year (2017) or maybe the following. But the future on into the early 2020s is ever less certain.

Lake Mead shrinkage

(NASA Earth Observatory shows the extraordinary shrinkage of Lake Mead from 2000 through 2015. Also note the very rapid growth of water-hungry Las Vegas directly to the west of the imperiled reservoir. Image source: Earth Observatory.)

As of last week, Lake Mead’s water levels had fallen below 1074 feet above sea level. This represents just 37 percent of the reservoir’s capacity. If levels remain below 1075 feet through to January 1, a number of required water restrictions will ripple through the Colorado River system forcing states like Arizona, Nevada and California to endure cutbacks. It’s a situation that may not happen this year, but one that grows more and more likely each following year as the Colorado River continues to dry out.

In total, more than 25 million people depend upon Lake Mead’s water. And the drought along the Colorado River that is shrinking the lake combines with endemic drying in California to create a context of ongoing and worsening water resource stress over the US Southwest. A drying driven on by the human-forced warming of our world and by the very fossil fuel burning that Trump is preparing to double down on should he be elected President.

It’s a worsening reality that will call for hard choices and bold efforts if the communities of this threatened US region are to survive and prosper. A set of choices requiring a firm grasp of the tough new realities now settling in and a willingness to chose renewable energy systems that will not worsen water stress and that will not continue to enflame an already tough climate situation.

But the presumptive leader of the republican party brazenly spouts ignorance of even a simpleton’s understanding of the powerful and dangerous climate forces now at work. A bald lack of basic knowledge that would put tens of millions throughout the US Southwest at risk due to what is sure to be a devastating resource mismanagement, an ill-timed return to dangerous fuels, and an utter lack of climate disaster preparedness should Trump be elected. A serious deficiency in the kinds of urgently needed national leadership skills in the current day coupled with a denial of simple realities that should cause pretty much everyone to question whether the man possesses even the most rudimentary qualifications for serving as President of the United States.

Links:

United States Drought Monitor

Lake Mead Drops to Record Low

Contribution of Anthropogenic Warming to California Drought

Watch Lake Mead Dramatically Shrink

Association of California Water Agencies

Hat Tip to Genomik

Hat Tip to DT Lange

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141 Comments

  1. Keith Antonysen

     /  May 30, 2016

    The Leader of the Australian Opposition Labor Party; Bill Shorten, has suggested that Trump is “barking mad”. The Prime Minister chided the Opposition Leader for making the statement but gave an impression that secretly he agrees.
    Trump is ridiculed by many people in Australia; but then, the Republican Party appears to be completely out of touch with reality.

    Thanks for all the great work you do, Robert.

    Reply
    • Cheers, Keith. In all honesty, I can’t in good conscience stay on the sidelines in this election. There is far too much at stake. Everyone’s suffering because the Republican Party is basically run by the fossil fuel companies. The fact that Donald is their front runner shows how corrupt the party has become and how easy it is to fool the republican electorate.

      Reply
      • Perhaps more accurately GOP is run by a hand called ‘money’, one of whom’s fingers is the fossil fuel industry. Bernie is absolutely spot on when he explains the growing wealth disparity and oligarchy, and why we must eve go to the point of revolution to take back our government and restore democratic fundamentals. None of us should be sitting on the sidelines, though the shrill intensity makes that look mighty comfortable.

        Reply
      • Jeremy in Wales

         /  May 31, 2016

        Robert, how does such an ignorant message run with people in Nevada, Arizona and California who surely are aware of the perilous state their water supply especially as Las Vegas has cut per capita consumption by 30%? You would think it surely cannot play well with voters there, or does it, and if so why? The lake with its white bath ring is visible to all who care to look, and California still has banked water to draw down the level even further as I understand.
        The satelite images from 2000-2015 of Lake Mead also clearly show the doubling in size of the Las Vegas urban area while the Lake shrinks by the same amount – that city could be a ghost town in 20 years – especially if they are last in line for water rights?

        Reply
    • Henri

       /  May 30, 2016

      It is all fine commenting things half the world away, but Australia has to take a good long look in the mirror back at home. Just last friday it was revealed Australia had all the mentions about it’s challenges removed from an UN report on world heritage sites and global warming. The reason for it was a fear of negative impact on tourism income worth billions. This is just the latest folly we hear from there after embracing coal and CSIRO cuts.

      I am not out to put the blame in any significant amount on Australia but rather just one example how this happens all around the globe. Very few are doing their part but all like to point fingers at others. The (sadly) funniest part is that most of the biggest deniers of climate change like to label themselves conservatives.

      http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/may/27/australia-scrubbed-from-un-climate-change-report-after-government-intervention

      Reply
      • Mulga Mumblebrain

         /  May 30, 2016

        Henri, believe me, our Antipodean knuckle-draggers are WORLD CLASS, at least equal to any Trump across the Pacific. Not only do we remove any reference to natural disasters such as the death of the Great Barrier Reef, the burning of Tasmanian temperate rain-forests and the loss of Kakadu’s wet-lands through salt-water intrusion, but our Miniature Against the Environment, Greg ‘Rhyming Slang’ Hunt, pretends that being the biggest coal exporter on the planet has NOTHING to do with the Reef’s demise. It’s all crown-of-thorns star-fish, don’t you realise!!Absolute hard-core denialism at least as toxic as any Tea Partier is rife in our Rightwing parties and the MSM, particularly the Murdoch cancer. The Anglosphere is Ground Zero for human idiocy and malevolence, no doubt about it.

        Reply
      • Mark from OZ

         /  May 31, 2016

        For those still wondering how on Earth did an enormous coal export terminal get built (1984) so close to the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park, have a squiz at the following link. With the usual army of silk suits and political subterfuge that completely reflects Henri and Mulga’s above comments, they ‘re-zoned’ the map to allow the facility to be built where conservation policies and protection would be lost.

        Like everywhere else( and certainly the ‘play’ in AUS), the goal of making money is job one and nothing else really matters. This kind of twisted logic would conclude that killing the GBR will mean no further need to protect it and hence the doorway to other commercial enterprises to gather where the GBR once existed.

        https://independentaustralia.net/environment/environment-display/dumping-on-the-reef-the-abbot-point-disaster-part-1,6297

        Reply
  2. Genomik

     /  May 30, 2016

    This is a very informative podcast called The Energy Gang. It’s 3 businesspeople discussing alternative energies like clean tech, solar, utilities. It features Jigar Shaw who helped jumpstart the solar financing model at Sun Edison. Also Ed lacy and Cathy Hamilton. They know their sheet.

    This episode discusses lake mead at 31:42 and it’s pretty gruesome. Interesting to note that I’ve been listening to this podcast for a few years and it’s mostly upbeat as they are searching for opportunities as businesspeople do. But on the subject of lake mead it got pretty discouraging. Los Angeles Nevada and Arizona all exist because there is water. Lake mead drought may threaten the entire ability of many people to live in these areas.

    This episode also discusses the MGM Grand in los Vegas leaving Nevada energy and this is GIANT good news. MGM took a 86million dollar hit to go rogue and get their own power which meets their pricing, reliability and sustainability goals. This group believes there will be many more.

    https://www.greentechmedia.com/articles/read/big-corporations-are-starting-to-ditch-their-power-providers

    Reply
    • dnem

       /  May 30, 2016

      I checked out the pervious episode of this podcast. It’s about solar market penetration and the panel had very, very positive things to say about the Clinton campaign’s serious, dedicated and well-informed support for the solar industry. FYI.

      Reply
      • Both were excellent podcasts. Very informative RE the changing energy dynamics — especially concerning the conflict over renewables in Nevada. I’ve gotten a decent look at Clinton’s energy team and they seem to be headed in the right direction. Very positive developments.

        Reply
  3. Gordon

     /  May 30, 2016

    Culture offers us leaders who reflect underlying values. The values of consumerism and pursuit of material gain inherent in American culture from its inception are now opposed
    by environmental conservatism.
    There is a conflict between consumer culture and reality, so ideology trumps realism and we have times of cognitive dissonance and clowns.

    Good luck to all

    Reply
  4. – Bang on, Robert.
    Thx.

    Reply
  5. – OT Coral

    – “These three events have all occurred while global temperatures have risen by just 1 degree C above the pre-industrial period.’

    Coral death toll climbs on Great Barrier Reef
    May 30

    “We found on average, that 35% of the corals are now dead or dying on 84 reefs that we surveyed along the northern and central sections of the Great Barrier Reef, between Townsville and Papua New Guinea,” says Professor Terry Hughes, Director of the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies at James Cook University (JCU).

    “Some reefs are in much better shape, especially from Cairns southwards, where the average mortality is estimated at only 5%.

    “This year is the third time in 18 years that the Great Barrier Reef has experienced mass bleaching due to global warming, and the current event is much more extreme than we’ve measured before.

    “These three events have all occurred while global temperatures have risen by just 1 degree C above the pre-industrial period.

    “We’re rapidly running out of time to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.”

    Reply
  6. – Are you ready for this — this roster?

    Donald Trump’s Chief Fund-Raiser Heads Straight for Las Vegas
    May 12

    LAS VEGAS — Less than a week after being recruited by Donald J. Trump to be his campaign fund-raiser, Steven Mnuchin did not waste any time looking for big-money donors.

    On Wednesday, Mr. Mnuchin met with hedge fund managers at the Bellagio Hotel in Las Vegas, where the nation’s largest hedge fund conference, the SkyBridge Alternatives Conference, or SALT, is being held.

    On the sidelines of the conference, Mr. Mnuchin sat with Scott Brown, the former Republican senator from Massachusetts, as he shook hands with prospective Trump donors.

    Later, Mr. Mnuchin attended a dinner that included the billionaire hedge fund manager Kenneth C. Griffin, David H. Petraeus, the former C.I.A. director and general, and John A. Boehner, the former House speaker.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2016/05/13/business/dealbook/donald-trumps-chief-fund-raiser-heads-straight-for-las-vegas.html?_r=0

    Reply
  7. – OT USA Northeast Rain

    Reply
  8. Mark Oliver

     /  May 30, 2016

    Everyone I have spoken to in the UK is horrified and scared that this buffoon is even in the running for President. We have experience of him from his Scottish golf course adventures and it isn’t an appealing prospect.

    More severe weather potential in Europe. “An area of low pressure and associated active frontal system will bring heavy, possibly thundery, rain to parts of France, Belgium and the Netherlands on Sunday and Monday. Up to two months worth of rain could fall in a few places. However, there is uncertainty in the details of where the heaviest rainfall will fall, but there is a risk of flooding across this part of Europe.”

    https://blog.metoffice.gov.uk/2016/05/27/unsettled-weather-for-europe-and-further-afield/

    Reply
  9. – Trump bikers — a mix of recreational aggression and fossil fuel burning dependence reinforcing one another.
    An ‘Altamont’ style guard force? Sarah Drill-Baby-Drill-I-Love-the-Smell-of-Emissions Palin is very popular with this bunch.
    Their patriotic stance is one more excuse for them to dominate communities with their machines. They do it with their Toys-For-Tots Christmas events. I’ve seen vastly overpowered motorcycles with stuffed Made-in-China toy animals strapped to the handlebars — roaring through town in a procession of LOUD emissions.
    I have no respect for them — or Trump. I do fear them. But they don’t scare me — not as much as I’m fearful of a society that accepts what this bunch does.
    Plus the number of veterans that are homeless, or commit suicide when they return to this same society is never at the front of these political ‘events’.

    – Donald Trump and Bikers Share Affection at Rolling Thunder Rally

    WASHINGTON — Donald J. Trump, the Manhattan real estate mogul who boasts about his wealth, maintains a fleet of aircraft and sells his own brand of neckties, paid respects on Sunday to an incongruous constituency.

    “Look at all these bikers,” Mr. Trump, standing before a crowd in front of the Lincoln Memorial, said with admiration. “Do we love the bikers? Yes. We love the bikers.”

    Mr. Trump was addressing a gathering at the 29th annual Rolling Thunder motorcycle run, a vast event over Memorial Day weekend that is dedicated to accounting for military members taken as prisoners of war or listed as missing in action.
    http://www.nytimes.com/2016/05/30/us/politics/donald-trump-and-bikers-share-affection-at-rolling-thunder-rally.html

    Reply
    • ‘“He speaks what’s on his mind and means what he says,” said Tom Christian, 43, a heating and air-conditioning contractor from Tennessee. “And that’s what a biker does. That’s the way we are: We say what we think. If you like it, you like it. If you don’t, go the other way.”

      The warm embrace from the crowd gave no hint of the controversy that Mr. Trump incited last year when he denigrated the military service of Senator John McCain of Arizona, a former prisoner of war in North Vietnam. Mr. Trump said Mr. McCain, a fellow Republican, was not a war hero, saying, “I like people that weren’t captured, O.K.?”

      Reply
      • Jose M. is like a brother to me. I haven’t seen for many years since we were together in Canada but I think of him at times.
        Of Mexican descent, and living in California — he was drafted into the US Army and sent to Vietnam. He knew close-quarter combat using shotguns. At some point, he was captured by the VC and held standing up in pit in the ground — in the hot sun. He was fed by someone kick a few grains of rice onto his outstretched tongue. He drank water the same way — usually rain water.
        He was eventually released. I’m convinced they would have likely killed if it were not for the fact he looked a lot like the Vietnamese version of an Aztec prince.
        He eventually settled in BC doing tree-planting as he rejected America where dogs are well fed and mediated while children starve. Purple Hearts weren’t for him — for he already had a heart of gold.
        I love him like a brother and I miss him and hope he’s OK.

        As for Trump and his biker bozos, I have nothing but contempt — for them and their machines.
        Thanks for listening.
        Peace, and hope, to us all.
        OUT

        Reply
  10. Cate

     /  May 30, 2016

    Couple of us were posting links to the flash floods in Germany yesterday. Here’s an update:.

    http://climatestate.com/2016/05/30/another-deluge-hits-frontpage-news-this-time-in-germany/

    Reply
  11. marcel_g

     /  May 30, 2016

    The break from reality and constant stream of BS is an important part of his strategy. As a nervous Canuck watching from the sidelines, I really hope the Clinton team takes their gloves off and takes Drumpf’s delegitimization strategy seriously. He KO’d the other GOP candidates handily with it.

    Why Trump Might Win:
    http://www.willwilkinson.net/flybottle/2016/05/29/why-trump-might-win/

    Reply
    • As far as “deligitimizing Donald” is concerned, Senator Elizabeth Warren is going to be a huuuuuuuugge player in this election.

      When GOP senators blocked Warren’s appointment to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, they helped to create a much bigger problem for themselves: *Senator* Elizabeth Warren.

      After Warren was denied the chairmanship of the Financial Protection Bureau, she decided to run for a seat on the US Senate (and she won).

      Elizabeth Warren is the GOP’s worst nightmare — a former Harvard Law School professor who has made it her career to tear new orifices on GOP politicians’ backsides. She has been going after Drumpf in spectacular fashion.

      From http://heavy.com/news/2016/05/elizabeth-warren-donald-trump-5-fast-facts-housing-crisis-small-minimum-wage-loser-vice-president-hillary-clinton-goofy-native-american-heritage-pocahontas/

      #######
      “Donald Trump was drooling over the idea of a housing meltdown because it meant he could buy up a bunch more property on the cheap,” Warren said. “What kind of a man does that? Root for people to get thrown out on the street? Root for people to lose their jobs? Root for people to lose their pensions? Root for two little girls in Clark County, Nevada, to end up living in a van? What kind of a man does that?
      #######

      Also, check out Warren’s twitter feed at https://twitter.com/elizabethforma/with_replies

      Warren is not only going to have “The Donald” s#&!ing bricks during the general election, she’s going to make it much easier for him to s#&! those bricks by tearing him new ones right and left.

      Warren is shaping up to be the Clinton campaign’s numero uno attack dog. To steal a line from Monty Python, Warren has nasty sharp pointy teeth. And she knows how to use them.

      Reply
  12. climatehawk1

     /  May 30, 2016

    Tweet scheduled.

    Reply
  13. I like the “Dishonest Donald” coinage, by the way, nice work! Hope it catches on like his branding of other candidates. I’ll definitely use it more when referring to him.

    Reply
    • Dave person

       /  May 30, 2016

      John Stewart refers to him as a “manchild”. He appeals to the “manchildren” all over America.

      Reply
  14. donesoverydone

     /  May 30, 2016

    Reblogged this on things I've read or intend to.

    Reply
  15. Joe Romm:

    Memorial Day: Why Trump’s war on climate action would ensure a world of wars http://thkpr.gs/3782673

    Reply
  16. El Niño is over, but leaves nearly 100 million short of food http://gu.com/p/4jtnz/stw

    Reply
  17. Drumpf would stand at the North Pole, in the middle of northern hemisphere winter, in a raging snowstorm and with his pinched face declare “What global warming?”
    Drumpf would stand in in the rain in a California almond orchard, during a seasonal deluge and shrug his shoulders and state “What drought?”
    Drumpf would stand in the tide pools, at low tide in Tuvalu and incredulously claim “What sea rise?”
    Drumpf’s statements are representative of most of corporate think: short term outlook for short term profits. Obvious agenda conjoined with shallow, narrow minded thinking are tools of those wishing to distract the public from obvious trends and eventualities to focus on immediate gratification issues. And we are a culture, a world culture, reliant more and more on I-want-mine-now!
    What is inconsistent in Drumpf’s story, however, and redolent of some subversive byline, is his obvious understanding of long term views given a history of real estate investment. One does not generally play the real estate market with a goal to flip a large property for 1000 basis points within a yearly quarter. Sure it happens but the expectations of ROI on property extends usually over years if not decades.
    Therefore, if we assume that the Donald has a real estate minded ability to see the future payout for long term investments, what is he playing at when he blatantly ignores projections of obvious trends and brushes them off as conjecture and conspiracy?
    We all know the reason, he’s stated it himself, Drumpf today is not a Drumpf tomorrow — “I will change, once I’m President!” The trick, I propose, is to catch him in an obvious contradiction and hold his feet to the global warming fire.

    Reply
  18. Wharf Rat

     /  May 30, 2016

    Robert.. Would you consider changing the title to Dishonest Donald Drumpf denies…?

    Have a good Memorial Day, all. 1,2,3, what are we fight for?

    Reply
    • Thanks Wharf. I think Drumpf is a good meme. But would have to explain it and wanted to keep this post lean and mean.

      The US needs more good folk singers. The mid 20th century was a renaissance of free and open thought for our country. One that largely grew up out of what could best be described as a healthy garden of home-grown art. It’s a well that appears to have grown dark and quiet of late.

      Reply
  19. More locally-heavy rain for flood-weary Texas this week: Weather Underground http://po.st/bNHxlG

    Reply
  20. Wharf Rat

     /  May 30, 2016

    “The fall in discovered volumes for conventional oil outside North America [to just 2.8 billion barrels, the lowest level since 1952] has been steady and dramatic during the last few years. We’ve seen four consecutive years of declining oil volumes, which has never happened before. The bottom has completely fallen out for conventional exploration, and the result portends a supply gap in the future that is going to be challenging to overcome. In the current cost-cutting environment, the outlook for 2016 discovery volumes is not likely to be better, either.”
    Leta Smith, director, IHS Energy, upstream industry future service

    http://www.ogj.com/articles/2016/05/ihs-conventional-discoveries-outside-n-america-drop-to-lowest-level-since-1952.html

    At 80 M BPD consumption, that’s 35 days of oil.

    Reply
    • Cate

       /  May 30, 2016

      Supply gap? As in, $200-a-barrel supply gap? I guess it’s one way to recoup your losses.

      Reply
    • Bring it on. Renewables could use another boost.

      My personal opinion, though, is that in the current day unconventionals could easily cover any slack and that we have so much in the way of hydrocarbons here and there that the real problem is not a question of too little supply, but one of far too much. I think it is fair to say that the oil market is in for quite a lot of volatility over the coming years. But the twilight will be brought on by renewables and by a necessary response to climate change, not by a supply crash. I mean we have drillers across the US just chomping at the bit to go back into another mad fracking frenzy. And another price spike will knock out 2-3 mbpd deisel (switch to solar + storage) and usher in a far more rapid adoption of EVs. Add in new biofuels and another price spike looks like an alt energy supply onrush and a death knell for oil — at least at the top of the margin.

      Reply
      • Cate

         /  May 31, 2016

        Agree, a well-deserved rough ride is in store for Big Oil, which in Canada will mean continuing turmoil for folks on the ground, say, in Alberta and Newfoundland in particular. Oil adherents will continue to think wishfully, longing for the good old days of King Oil and misinterpreting price spikes as comebacks, not as the death throes of the industry. Eventually the truth will dawn even on them.

        Reply
  21. Ryan in New England

     /  May 30, 2016

    Great post, Robert. Very timely and important post. Whether you’re into politics or not, if you’re concerned about climate change you have no choice but to become involved. The stakes are too high, and the Republicans (especially Trump) too backwards and too extreme to remain indifferent or neutral. When I heard Trump’s ignorant drought comment I immediately thought to share it with everybody here. By the time I got to it, you already had a post about it. Fantastic work!

    Reply
    • Cheers, Ryan. I can always count on you to anticipate where we’re headed. Speaking of which, remember our little discussion about Trump supporters intentionally trying to incite Bernie and Hillary supporters into fighting it out with one another? Looks like at least some of the media has grown wise to the trend — http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2016/05/31/trump-trolls-plot-to-bait-bernie-and-hillary-into-twitter-wars.html

      To be clear the incitement has probably also targeted Hillary and Bernie themselves. And the worst thing we could do now, with Trump as the real enemy, is to fight one another. Hillary and Bernie supporters have so much in common it’s crazy. And whoever wins is the one we should all be throwing our support behind and that winner should be doing everything they can to promote and to provide a place at the table for the loser of what was a passionate and well-fought primary by both sides. I stand by my assertion that the loser should absolutely take the VP slot. We would unite all the best of our party in this way, open it up to new faces and provide the strongest Democratic Party platform in many decades. There are too many good things, too many strengths in both Hillary’s and Bernie’s movements not to do this, not to honor each other in this way.

      Reply
      • Ryan in New England

         /  May 31, 2016

        You are absolutely spot on, Robert! If the “reasonable” Republicans can convince themselves to support Trump now that he is the party’s nominee, then the Bernie/Hillary supporters can surely put aside their differences in order to come together and support the Democratic nominee for POTUS. Would I love to see Bernie as the nominee, and eventually President? Absolutely! Am I a big fan of Hillary? Absolutely not. But do I have any reservations about voting for Hillary if the choice is between her and Trump? No freaking way! We (those of us concerned about climate change) need to do everything we can to support whoever ends up on the ticket running against Trump. If he ended up winning the Presidency we would not only lose precious years which should be spent transitioning to renewables, but we would also backtrack and lose any progress we have made towards a fossil fuel free future. He is literally as bad as it gets. If I imagined a dystopian future with a horrible dictator who eschews any renewable/clean technology in favor of dirty energy and backwards policies I doubt I could think of anyone worse than Trump.

        Reply
  22. Ryan in New England

     /  May 30, 2016

    The AMOC is showing signs of slowing down.

    An array deployed in 2004 between Florida and the Canary Islands, for instance, showed “unexpectedly wild swings” in the strength of the AMOC currents from month to month, Hand reported. From 2009 to 2010, the average strength of the AMOC dropped by about 30 percent, causing warmer waters to remain in the tropics rather than being carried northward.

    Over its first decade of operation, the Florida-to-Canary Islands subtropical array recorded a 25 percent decline in the AMOC’s average strength, which is an order of magnitude more than models suggested could occur due to the effects of climate change.

    https://news.mongabay.com/2016/05/scientists-concerned-slowing-atlantic-conveyor-warn-abrupt-climate-change/

    Reply
    • Cate

       /  May 30, 2016

      This OSNAP group has a website with a blog, email list, and so on. As we speak, they are deploying an array between Newfoundland and Greenland. This will be an interesting project to follow.

      Their current voyage began in St John’s, my dear old stomping ground.😀

      “First of all, we said hello at the Merian and went on a small (and quite windy) tour to Signal Hill, from which you have a great view over the harbor and which became popular as Marconi received the first transatlantic radio signal here in 1901. In the evening we went to the city center and enjoyed dinner in a nice Canadian restaurant. The colorful houses and open-minded and witty people make up the great flair of St. John’s.”

      http://www.o-snap.org/

      Reply
      • Ryan in New England

         /  May 30, 2016

        Thank you for the info, Cate! All of your posts are so informative, and I enjoy each one.🙂

        Reply
      • Cate

         /  May 31, 2016

        As I do yours, Ryan. You have a real gift for the nail-head-whack.😀

        Reply
      • Ryan in New England

         /  May 31, 2016

        Well, Cate, I am a carpenter, so that’s probably why😉 Thank you for the kind words!

        Reply
    • Sheri

       /  May 30, 2016

      Forgive this ignorant question, but does this mean the Gulf Stream is slowing down? Could it stop altogether??? OK,i ts 2 ignorant questions. Thanks

      Reply
      • Cate

         /  May 30, 2016

        Sheri, yes, and yes.

        And I think probably all the real, best questions begin in ignorance. That’s why we ask questions, to find answers.😀

        Reply
      • Cate

         /  May 30, 2016

        And by “ignorant”, I mean straight up “not knowing.”

        Reply
      • We have a number of indicators pointing to a Gulf Stream slowdown at this time. It’s been theorized that an order of magnitude increase in the rate of Greenland melt (x10 approx) could shut it down entirely.

        Reply
      • Ryan in New England

         /  May 31, 2016

        Sheri, Cate’s right, there are no ignorant questions. Especially here. I think Robert would agree this is a site dedicated to informing and educating…and answering questions. The more questions people ask, the better our chance of informing the world enough so that we can preserve a livable climate.

        Reply
  23. Ryan in New England

     /  May 30, 2016

    The Great Barrier Reef is literally dying in front of our eyes. Something I thought, and hoped, I would never see in my lifetime.

    The majority of coral is now dead on many reefs in the central section of the Great Barrier Reef, according to an underwater survey of 84 reefs, in the worst mass bleaching event to hit the world heritage sit.

    The conditions that led to the bleaching event were estimated to have been virtually impossible if it were not for the greenhouse gases humans have released into the atmosphere. Models showed they would be average conditions within 20 years.

    Terry Hughes from James Cook University, who led the survey work, said: “This year is the third time in 18 years that the Great Barrier Reef has experienced mass bleaching due to global warming, and the current event is much more extreme than we’ve measured before.

    “These three events have all occurred while global temperatures have risen by just 1C above the pre-industrial period. We’re rapidly running out of time to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.”

    http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/may/30/most-coral-dead-in-central-section-of-great-barrier-reef-surveys-reveal

    Reply
    • Ryan in New England

       /  May 31, 2016

      I just realized DT posted this same info in a comment above. Sorry everybody!

      Reply
  24. This economist at Forbes actually tries to apologize for Trump, arguing that the problem in California is one of pricing, not a problem of “shortage”.

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/timworstall/2016/05/29/but-donald-trump-is-right-about-california-water-the-problem-is-the-price-not-the-drought/2/#6981ddbf3967

    According to the Economics 101 I was taught in college, though, there can really never be a long term shortage of anything except money. Demand is defined as both willingness and ability to pay the current market price for any commodity. So, if California becomes drier than the driest current desert on Earth, there still will not be a shortage of water in California, by this definition.

    Just because people might not be willing to pay a million dollars per cup of water doesn’t mean there is a shortage, does it? According to free market economic theory, so long as supply matches demand, there is no shortage. Only shortages of money are allowed by this definition, never long term shortages of commodities.

    Needless to say, most of us use the word “shortage” differently than this. We might use it to describe an increase in the price of food or water, for example. Or we might us it to describe four years of drought in a row, and ground subsidence of tens of feet due to ground water depletion.

    This is truly shameless sophistry in defense of a Presidential candidate who is so ignorant as to be indefensible.

    Reply
    • Abel Adamski

       /  May 30, 2016

      Hmmm, the parting of the waters allowing the Israelites to escape was an act of God, yet Fort McMurray and the “Coincidental flooding” in Texas post the Exxon Shareholder Meeting is just coincidence. ?

      Reply
    • Yeah, if water’s so hard to access that most people can’t afford it, then there’s a shortage. Kinda like what the free market did to healthcare in the US.

      Reply
    • Mulga Mumblebrain

       /  May 31, 2016

      Tim Worstall, from that vaudevillian comic troupe the Adam Smith Institute. Another zomboid who imagines that the Invisible Hand can create anything, ex nihilo, but you’ve gotta believe. I see he gets a recommendation from Matt ‘Northern Rock’ Ridley, the hereditary coal baron and fundamentalist climate destabilisation denier-still.

      Reply
    • Wharf Rat

       /  May 31, 2016

      If we raise the price of water to farmers by 10 X , we’ll have fewer farmers complaining about the lack of water. I suspect it’s not what the author had in mind.

      April 9, 2015
      Cheap Water for Agriculture Worsens California Water Crisis
      http://www.sanjoseinside.com/2015/04/09/cheap-water-for-agriculture-worsens-california-water-crisis/

      Reply
  25. Abel Adamski

     /  May 30, 2016

    Hmm an interesting one, but then it has been well known for many decades that the Antarctic lags the Arctic by about 2 centuries, due to the deep ocean currents, nice to have that verified.
    https://www.yahoo.com/news/antarctic-seas-defy-global-warming-thanks-chill-deep-151203787.html

    Reply
  26. Abel Adamski

     /  May 30, 2016

    Another interesting one about the now dated 8,000 year old Harrapan civilisation and how it coped with Climate change and the drying up of monsoons and the once were mythical Vedic rivers
    http://zeenews.india.com/news/eco-news/climate-change-probably-not-responsible-for-harappan-civilisation-collapse_1890159.html

    Kolkata: Climate change was probably not the sole cause for the collapse of the Harappan civilisation in the Indus-Ghaggar-Hakra river valleys, say Indian scientists in a breakthrough study, highlighting that the the Harappans “did not give up” despite the decline in the monsoon.

    The recent research by a team of researchers from IIT Kharagpur, Institute of Archaeology, Deccan College Pune, Physical Research Laboratory and Archaeological survey of India (ASI) also shows that the civilization itself was much older than thought — it is at least 8,000 years old.

    “Our study suggests that the climate was probably not the sole cause of Harappan decline. Despite the monsoon decline, they did not disappear. They changed their farming practices.

    The findings come from a major excavated site of Bhirrana in Haryana, that shows preservation of all cultural levels of this ancient civilisation from pre-Harappan Hakra phase through Early Mature Harappan to Mature Harappan time.

    Bhirrana was part of a high concentration of settlements along the now dried up mythical Vedic river ‘Saraswati’, an extension of Ghaggar river in the Thar desert.

    Reply
  27. Abel Adamski

     /  May 30, 2016

    Peter on Climate Crocks has some good recent posts on energy and the problems facing F/F interests
    https://climatecrocks.com/2016/05/30/the-weekend-wonk-the-utility-death-spiral-has-begun/

    Reply
  28. Cate

     /  May 31, 2016

    The phased and voluntary re-entry to Fort Mac, scheduled to begin on June 1, is complicated. Hundreds of undamaged homes may be contaminated and unsafe for habitation.

    >>>> Tests done near those homes show ash and soil in the area contain substances like arsenic and other heavy metals……(ash with high ph which can be caustic, arsenic, polyaromatic hydrocarbons, dioxins, furans)….
    The homes destroyed by fire have been sprayed with a composite material that hardens into a protective shell, acting as a barrier keeping contaminated ash and other debris from spreading through the air. <<<<

    Flights into the work camps were suspended temporarily this morning because of poor air quality. The fire is currently about 25 km from Fort Mac.

    http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/edmonton/hundreds-of-undamaged-fort-mcmurray-homes-declared-unsafe-due-to-toxic-ash-1.3607928

    Reply
    • – What a mess. Such a list of toxics.

      – Dioxins & Furans: The Most Toxic Chemicals Known to Science
      (a hub of info)
      http://www.ejnet.org/dioxin/

      Reply
      • PAH – Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons
        General description

        The term polycyclic organic matter (POM) defines a broad class of compounds that generally includes all organic structures containing three or more fused aromatic rings. These structures can contain the elements carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen and sulfur.

        PAHs are a large group of organic compounds with two or more fused aromatic (benzene) rings (2). Low-molecular-weight PAHs (two and three rings) occur in the atmosphere predominantly in the vapour phase, whereas multi-ringed PAHs (five rings or more) are largely bound to particles. Intermediate-molecular-weight PAHs (four rings) are partitioned between the vapour and particulate phases, depending on the atmospheric temperature (3). Particle-bound PAHs are considered to be very hazardous to human health.
        – ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK138709/

        ###

        Overview

        The term polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) refers to a ubiquitous group of several hundred chemically-related and environmentally persistent organic compounds of various structures and varied toxicity. Most of them are formed by a process of thermal decomposition and then recombination of these organic molecules. PAHs enter the environment through various routes and can usually be found as a mixture containing two or more of these compounds, e.g. soot. However, some PAHs are manufactured and these pure PAHs usually exist as colorless, white, or pale yellow solids.

        Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons affect organisms through various toxic actions. They have been shown to cause carcinogenic and mutagenic effects and also have been found to be potent immunosuppressants (decreasing immune function). The most extensively studied PAHs are 7,12-dimethylbenzo anthracene (DMBA) and benzo(a)pyrene (BaP).
        http://www.toxipedia.org/display/toxipedia/Polycyclic+Aromatic+Hydrocarbons+%28PAHs%29+-+Abridged

        Reply
      • – I’ve got to add that the above inventory of toxics generally fits most urban traffic dust/emission/air pollution locations.

        Reply
      • “… 65% of it was from non-communicable diseases, mostly due to air pollution.”

        Deaths from environmental degradation threaten global public health

        An unhealthy environment has caused almost a quarter of all deaths, prompting the need to place environmental issues at the centre of efforts to improve human health – this was a key message at the second United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA-2) last week.

        The dangers posed by air and water pollution, harmful chemicals, microplastics in oceans, wastes, zoonotic diseases and climate change to human health were revealed in a series of reports released at the meeting in Nairobi, Kenya.

        The UN says in 2012, 12.6 million people died as a result of living or working in an unhealthy environment and 65% of it was from non-communicable diseases, mostly due to air pollution.
        http://www.star2.com/living/living-environment/2016/05/31/deaths-from-environmental-degradation-threaten-global-public-health/

        Reply
      • Donald Trump’s energy proposals echo old GOP priorities

        Donald Trump, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, outlined his energy policy proposals at an oil industry conference in North Dakota on Thursday, promising to expand fossil fuel use and reduce environmental regulations.

        The nearly 45-minute speech hit on many long-held Republican priorities, including rescinding EPA air pollution regulations, opposing international environmental accords and supporting the coal and oil industries.

        http://www.utilitydive.com/news/donald-trumps-energy-proposals-echo-old-gop-priorities/419980/

        Reply
      • Cate

         /  May 31, 2016

        dt, thanks for these details. I did wonder, in view of the huge concentration of refineries in the area, if any of these nasties might have been occurring in Fort Mac soil even before the fire?

        Reply
      • Hi dt-

        Incomplete combustion at low oxygen levels – pyrolysis – of woody biomass generates polyaromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). Some of these PAHs are carcinogenic,with most of them mild or suspected carcinogens, I think.

        Tar sands production also generates polyaromatic hydrocarbons, but somewhat different ones, apparently:

        https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Tom_Harner/publication/271219527_First_Results_from_the_Oil_Sands_Passive_Air_Monitoring_Network_for_Polycyclic_Aromatic_Compounds/links/54da15a30cf25013d043f5cb.pdf

        “However, a forest fire episode during April to July 2011 resulted in greatly elevated PAH levels at all passive sampling locations. Alkylated PAHs and DBTs were not elevated during the forest fire period, supporting their association with petrogenic sources.”

        So, it should be possible to tell from the levels of the alkylated PAHs and DBTs (dibenzothiophenes) versus the others what the origin of the PAHs was, whether from the forest fires or from petrogenic sources (oil and tar sands).

        Slow combustion of thawed permafrost and forest floor litter might generate elevated levels of PAHs, I think – smoldering fires at low oxygen levels.

        It might be better for biomass combustion to go all the way from biomass to CO2 in one combined operation, I think, to burn up the PAHs (which are combustible). Afterburners operating at high temperatures have also sometimes been used to decrease PAH emissions.

        Reply
        • Sounds like a bad idea without CCS. Human processes are inevitably faster at generating carbon emissions than natural ones. There’s this logical fallacy floating around that somehow we can prevent natural emissions by burning materials that may be involved in a natural carbon feedback. But a natural carbon feedback is diffuse and you can’t capture it in large enough part to make a difference. In addition, we’ve seen that the human emission process, when linked to economies, has a tendency to rapidly scale. For these reasons we’ve got a big, red flashing, moral hazard on this one.

      • Yes, it might be better to go all the way to oxyfuel combustion and closed cycle CCS. If there are no combustion emissions, it would be hard for any PAHs produced to get into the air:

        http://dc.engconfintl.org/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1065&context=cfb10

        We also need to look at relative risks, though. I think that the risk of abrupt climate change, in terms of both probability and consequences is so huge, I would be willing to tolerate small risks from low levels of PAHs.

        Reply
        • Every time I read something like this, I really lament the lack of a carbon tax. It just keeps so many things on the rails that would otherwise generate a train wreck.

      • You know, a gas chromatograph flame ionization detector burns hydrocarbons in a hydrogen/oxygen flame, and detects the resulting ions. It might be possible to take some of the hydrogen from pyrolysis of the biomass in the first stage of combustion, and use the hydrogen as a last step in the combustion process, to burn up just about all of the polyaromatic hydrocarbons.

        Just a thought. But it might be one way to do biomass combustion without emission of polyaromatic hydrocarbons.

        Reply
    • Ryan in New England

       /  May 31, 2016

      Thank you both, Cate and DT, for all of that information. Most people think that when a fire stops burning or moves on the danger is over. Not so.

      Reply
  29. – “It originated in the old burn area and spread into an area with fresh fuel.’
    – Alaska News

    adn.com/alaska-news/2016/05/30/fast-growing-wildfire-near-mcgrath-

    Fast-growing wildfire near McGrath expected to merge with smaller fire Monday
    The Medfra fire was first reported Sunday morning. Fire officials say it is likely a “holdover fire” from the 16,500-acre Soda Creek Fire of last summer. It originated in the old burn area and spread into an area with fresh fuel.

    Reply
    • A holdover fire in this region is one that burns through Arctic winter. And this is likely due to the fact that permafrost was involved.

      Reply
    • Ryan in New England

       /  May 31, 2016

      Question; (and sorry for asking, I know I can just Google it, but I prefer the information I get from Robert and the Scribblers here🙂 ) Did these holdover fires exist decades ago? Or is this a new event brought on by a warming climate and subsequent thawing permafrost?

      Reply
      • Not at anywhere near the frequency and extent that they do today. And in no way was understory permafrost involved. You had holdover peat fires. But that’s a different animal. You’re burning through ancient carbon now.

        Reply
  30. Jay M

     /  May 31, 2016

    always seems dynamic over the north atlantic

    Reply
    • -DITTO THAT.

      crankyweatherguy ‏@crankywxguy 13h13 hours ago

      Outstanding frontal boundary expanding from north atlantic low.

      Reply
      • Reply
        • There’s a bit of a block setting up over Iceland and Greenland. In other words, the Greenland high is starting to rear its ugly head. This North Atlantic low is a dipole to atmospheric heights over Greenland that models are predicting could hit near 1045 mb later this week. It’s a crazy weather situation that will tend to drive strong storms across the North Atlantic and into Europe. But one that is also a rather bad situation for tge Arctic in that it greatly enhances sea ice export and warms storm formation on the Siberian side. Overall, a pretty bad set up that appears to now be in the process of emerging.

      • DANG…!

        Reply
  31. – NA PNW PDX Temps ramping up. And i don’t like it but…
    05/31 Tue 89 F — a bit of a cool down then 06/04-05 goes to 98 – 95 F.
    I’d watch the high(s) over this part of the globe.

    Gotta take the CLIMATE ALARM off of MUTE
    ASAP

    OUT

    Reply
  32. Reply
    • NSW The West: Short Range Public Discussion
      (Latest Discussion – Issued 1957Z May 30, 2016)

      A warmer and drier airmass will develop over the West as mid-to-upper
      level high pressure builds over the area. Numerous locations will have
      temperature ranging 5 to 15 degrees above the seasonal average for early
      June.
      (all those highs)

      Reply
      • Bonnie has weakened to a post-tropical cyclone and is expected to linger
        near the South Carolina coast over the next couple of days. Very moist air
        streaming northward of the circulation, ahead of an advancing cold front
        and is aiding in the numerous showers and thunderstorms across the
        Mid-Atlantic region. Areas of localized heavy rain and flash flooding will
        be possible through Thursday morning, especially for coastal North
        Carolina.

        Reply
  33. Via climatehawk1 – Fossil fuels – Canada

    Analysis
    Canada’s energy superpower status threatened as world shifts off fossil fuel, federal think-tank warns
    ‘Significant disruptions’ forecast in 10 to 15 years as cost of renewables, energy storage plummet

    Canada’s status as an “energy superpower” is under threat because the global dominance of fossil fuels could wane faster than previously believed, according to a draft report from a federal government think-tank obtained by CBC News.

    “It is increasingly plausible to foresee a future in which cheap renewable electricity becomes the world’s primary power source and fossil fuels are relegated to a minority status,” reads the conclusion of the 32-page document, produced by Policy Horizons Canada.

    The document was obtained by CBC News under an access to information request and shared with two experts — one in Alberta, one in British Columbia — who study the energy industry.

    Both experts described its forecasts for global energy markets as more or less in line with what a growing number of analysts believe.
    http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/calgary/canada-super-power-oil-decline-renewables-policy-horizons-1.3601400

    Reply
    • Canada – Just plain interesting…

      Reply
      • Reply
      • Via Naomi Klein

        B.C. environment minister says climate scientists’ letter ‘doesn’t meet with reality’
        Mary Polak defends B.C. Liberals’ committment to LNG, the ‘cleanest burning’ fossil fuel

        Reply
      • What is LNG?

        Liquefied natural gas, or LNG, is natural gas in its liquid form. When natural gas is cooled to minus 259 degrees Fahrenheit (-161 degrees Celsius), it becomes a clear, colorless, odorless liquid. LNG is neither corrosive nor toxic. Natural gas is primarily methane, with low concentrations of other hydrocarbons, water, carbon dioxide, nitrogen, oxygen and some sulfur compounds. During the process known as liquefaction, natural gas is cooled below its boiling point, removing most of these compounds. The remaining natural gas is primarily methane with only small amounts of other hydrocarbons. LNG weighs less than half the weight of water so it will float if spilled on water.

        California: http://www.energy.ca.gov/lng/faq.html

        Reply
      • – The proposed Pacific NorthWest LNG facility would be built on Lelu Island, at the mouth of the Skeena River near Prince Rupert. (Brian Huntington)

        Reply
    • Cate

       /  May 31, 2016

      Re the spike in Alberta firearm and ammo imports in April 2015: this was in the final weeks before the provincial election. There was huge angst and paranoia that the NDP would win and that communism would descend on Alberta in all its red fury. You’d have to be able to “protect yourself.” So I’m guessing there was some stock-piling going on. Some Conservative Albertans are probably a bit like Tea Partiers in their grip on reality.

      Turns out the NDP did win the election, of course, and the sky did not fall. And when Armageddon did show its face in Alberta, it was in a form that no gun could have stopped.

      Reply
    • Cate

       /  May 31, 2016

      What about “renewable energy superpower”?

      Canada could be that. If only the powers-that-be would shake off the shackles and blinders.

      Our entire political and financial elite is in slavery to Big Oil..

      Reply
  34. Reply
  35. – Lake Mead:

    NASA Earth Observatory:

    The last time Lake Mead was this low—in 1937—water managers were still filling the reservoir and putting finishing touches on the Hoover Dam. According to data from the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, the water level has now reached a record low for the second year in a row.

    On May 25, 2016, the surface level of Lake Mead at the Hoover Dam stood at 1,074.03 feet (327.36 meters) above sea level. The previous low of 1,075.08 feet (327.68 meters) was set in late June 2015. The lowest water levels each year are usually reached in late June or July, after water managers have released the yearly allotment of water for farmers and cities farther down the Colorado River watershed. That means water levels are likely to continue to fall in 2016 to roughly 1,070 feet (326 meters), according to the Bureau of Reclamation.

    Circle of Blue:

    Six years ago, at the end of the summer of 2010, federal Bureau of Reclamation officials worried that Hoover Dam, the biggest hydropower enterprise in the Southwest, might soon go dark. Water levels in Lake Mead, the dam’s energy source, were falling, and Hoover was moving “into uncharted territory,” the facility manager told Circle of Blue.

    Today, the story has a twist. Lake Mead is 10 feet lower, a new record set on May 18 that is re-broken every day now. Yet though water levels continue to decline, Hoover’s hydropower is in a much better spot. Thanks to investment in efficient equipment, managers are confident that they can still wring electricity from the Colorado River even as the surface elevation of Lake Mead drops below 1,050 feet, the uncharted territory that was assumed to be Hoover’s operating limit.

    “As far as power goes, we can still operate below 1,050 feet,” Rose Davis, Bureau of Reclamation spokeswoman, told Circle of Blue. Dam operators are revising the lower limit to 950 feet, a boundary that will be confirmed in October once the fifth and final more-efficient turbine is installed, Davis said.

    https://climatecrocks.com/2016/05/29/will-hoover-dam-go-bust/

    Reply
  36. – A personal Memorial Day note:

    No, I don’t have a high school diploma — but I came close to graduating in June 1967 after I failed strong subject in the final semester.
    It came about in an odd but tragic way after a good friend was killed in action in Vietnam at the time of that semester.

    Jerry was a neighbor, and couple of years older than me. He was a stellar citizen and very well liked and respected by the entire community.
    He had just completed Marine boot camp, and maybe advanced infantry training when I last saw him — and as he readied for overseas assignment.

    I still picture it as he took the time to talk seriously to me.

    You see, I had just come the neighborhood’s attention due my ‘semi-vandalism’ of something that should have withstood, to my mind, the test of physics and structural integrity. (The ‘something’ is another story — and comical in its own way but let’s say it didn’t live up to its advertised on TV capabilities.)
    So, Jerry, just before he shipped out — saw me on the street corner, and took me aside to talk. In reference to the semi-vandalism of the ‘something’, he said, “David, you are smart enough to know better…”
    I could tell he was sincere and meant it constructively. And I believed him — enough to keep it in my mind. And I used it to take the time to stand back during questionable times to evaluate just what the possibilities were. I took the time to think- and to say, “No” to things I might have gone along with. Over the years I likely saved myself a lot of trouble.
    He believed in me, and in my smarts too — in a time I was a bit without anchor or compass.

    ###

    Jerry was killed in late March, and I was still on my way to graduating. But then I decided that I would enlist in the Marines that June as soon as the school year was over.
    This would be my way of going to VN to, in my mind: “Kill the Commies” that killed him.
    So I got loose with my time and was basically telling people “Goodbye.” — and for sure not doing my school homework. Later I slowly came to question the reasons behind him being in VN to be killed.

    ###
    A bit about Jerry on this 2016 Memorial Day:

    Jerry Harold Georges
    Corporal
    1ST PLT, B CO, 1ST BN, 4TH MARINES, 3RD MARDIV
    United States Marine Corps
    20 April 1946 – 23 March 1967
    Santa Barbara, California

    ###
    A Note from The Virtual Wall

    On 23 March 1967, during Operation BEACON HILL, the 1st Bn, 4th Marines was engaged in heavy fighting near Gia Binh hamlet about 4 kilometers east-northeast of Con Thien (Hill 158). The weather was atrocious, with heavy fog and low ceilings severely hampering fixed-wing and helo operations. The battalion’s situation reports and post-action chronology reflect few men killed out-right but there were a considerable number of wounded – and they could not be medevaced because the combination of fog and heavy enemy fire prevented the helos from coming in. It wasn’t for lack of trying on the part of the helo crews; one UH-34 hit a radio tower and crashed, a second landed a-straddle a concrete retaining and rolled on its side, and a third was shot up so badly it was lucky to be able to land rather than simply fall out of the sky. Six Marines from the battalion died that day, four killed outright and two died of wounds – while The Virtual Wall cannot determine if the latter were wounded on 23 March it seems likely. The six men were
    B Company:
    Cpl Jerry H. Georges, Santa Barbara, CA (DoW)
    C Company:
    SSgt John S. Szymanski, Trenton, NJ (Silver Star)
    Cpl Charles W. Greene, Sandusky, OH
    Pfc Ronald E. Bohon, St Joseph, MO
    D Company:
    LCpl John J. Bryar, Chicago, IL
    Pfc Isaiah Samuels, Wagener, SC (DoW)
    Fortunately, the dozen or so crewmen on the downed helos escaped serious injury – but they had to stay with the infantry until the weather improved.

    – 05 Mar 2008 [The Virtual Wall]
    I went to school with Jerry at Santa Barbara Junior High School. He was a great guy. The week I got back from in country I heard about him. They don’t come any better..
    Fred Mares
    ###

    Just before I left Santa Barbara I did pay a last visit to his grave;
    ###
    OUT
    – Jerry H. Georges

    Reply
    • “They don’t come any better.”

      – There are some good ones here at Robert’s blog — quite few.
      Robert, you’re definitely one of them — most definitely.
      Thanks.
      OUT

      Reply
      • – For me, since I am still alive — I just try to know/do better — and try to give something back to my community. Even if it seems to be trying to do itself great harm.

        “Neither victim, nor executioner.”
        – Albert Camus

        Reply
    • – PS I did not enlist but ended up in exile in Canada for 13 years as an act of resistance.
      And I do believe in the need to have some sort of military to fend of the ‘bad guys’ of the world who would gladly do us harm.
      I serve my country (and the greater world) now.

      Reply
      • Cate

         /  May 31, 2016

        dt, wow, thanks so much for that. It is a very moving tribute to your friend, and to all the other guys and gals who went that same road. You brought back my own much more generalised memories of that time—-I think it’s hard for younger people to understand how much that war meant to our generation, how it united us and shaped us, as a demographic group and as individuals, for better and for worse. It made us who we are, a whole generation of us, even someone like me, a teenager in a remote Canadian backwater watching it all unfold on TV news. Viet Nam happening as it did in our most impressionable years opened our eyes, made us all grow up real fast and confront the real issues that plagued the world (and still do)–injustice, racism, imperialism, inequality. We girls put down our Barbies and picked up our placards, and that made all the difference to us–if not to the world in the long run, although there have been some successes. I’m glad you made it to Canada—many stayed, as you know—and that you have now found a way to serve the wider world.

        Reply
  37. Chuck Hughes

     /  May 31, 2016

    Las Vegas is finished. You tell me where they’ll be 15 years from now. Even if there were no drought they’re sucking all the water out of Lake Mead. Nestle isn’t helping. The Southwest is going fast.

    Reply
    • Oh, Las Vegas will just steal the water they need from the Native Americans:

      http://indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com/2012/08/20/goshute-tribes-fight-water-rights-face-300-mile-pipeline-vegas-130218

      Until they suck that dry too, of course.

      Reply
    • I can imagine a functional future for Las Vegas, as a solar energy development hub and transportation nexus. Urban uses of water are generally less than agricultural uses, for flood irrigation, anyway.

      But that possible functional future doesn’t have much correspondence to the current dysfunctional reality, with something like a million people living in the middle of a desert, in a city constructed on false promises of gambling winnings. It’s not gambling – for the casino owners and hotel owners.

      What’s the answer to the problems posed by climate change? Shelter in place, or migrate to another region supposedly more hospitable? Humanity is entering into a future where there are no sure bets, and few good choices, for the vast majority of people.

      Reply
  38. June

     /  May 31, 2016

    Post from Christopher Burt on Weather Underground.

    ” Half of Thailand’s Weather Sites Break All-time Heat Records in 42 Days”

    Of all the nations affected by the heat waves over the past two months Thailand has probably experienced the most widespread anomalous temperature departures. Never before in modern history has the country (at least since the establishment of its meteorological department in 1951) experienced such a widespread and prolonged heat event. Every region of the country experienced all-time record high temperatures: from Hat Yai in the far south to Mae Hong Son in the far north and Ubon Ratchathani in the far east. Every region and province saw sites exceed previous observed record maximum temperatures and every type of environment was affected: high mountains (as represented by Doi Ang Kang at 1530 m/5000’) and islands, such as the iconic beach resorts of Phuket and Ko Samui.

    https://www.wunderground.com/blog/weatherhistorian/comment.html?entrynum=338

    Reply
  39. Abel Adamski

     /  May 31, 2016

    For the lovers of plants
    http://www.canberratimes.com.au/technology/sci-tech/touchy-feely-plants-take-well-to-human-warmth-and-kindness-20160525-gp3bhp.html

    Believe it or not: plants respond tenderly when patted or touched
    New findings suggest we ought to think differently about our interactions with supposedly unresponsive plants and vegetables.

    While flowers and other members of the plant kingdom seem not to complain when we pinch their buds or step on them, they are fully aware of what’s happening and rapidly respond to the way they’re treated, scientists have discovered.

    Reply
  40. Cate

     /  May 31, 2016

    Climate science, as is, where is. This wonderful blog post from the OSNAP project conveys a great sense, I think, of climate fieldwork, of being there and doing it. Her field happens to be the Labrador Sea, and what’s up with ocean circulation these days.

    http://www.o-snap.org/somewhere-in-the-labrador-sea/

    Reply
  41. Colorado Bob

     /  May 31, 2016

    Ryan in New England / May 31, 2016

    Question; (and sorry for asking, I know I can just Google it, but I prefer the information I get from Robert and the Scribblers here:) ) Did these holdover fires exist decades ago? Or is this a new event brought on by a warming climate and subsequent thawing permafrost?

    Excellent question .

    My view, is no. It’s not just the permafrost zones. Further south the boreal forests have as much as 6 feet of “duff” on the forest floor. Once it acted as a vast sponge , holding water as the season progressed. When fires did happen, it served as brake on the fires.
    Now the sponge is burning as well as the forest.

    The Daily Mail as a lot of new pictures from Germany , notice how many homes have solar panels on their roofs.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3616186/Four-killed-German-flash-floods-Towns-devastated-raging-floodwater-flattens-houses-sweeps-away-cars-storms-cause-rivers-burst-banks.html

    Reply
  42. Colorado Bob

     /  May 31, 2016

    Haboob, Sandstorm, Dirt Storm? The Answer’s Blowing in the Texas Wind

    Just as people come to America from around the world, so do the terms we use to describe wind–although some would prefer that the nation stick to homegrown meteorological verbiage. A good case of this linguistic angst emerged on Sunday evening with the arrival of a dramatic haboob in Lubbock, TX. Rain-cooled outflow from strong thunderstorms over the Texas Panhandle pushed across the Lubbock area from the northeast, plowing up a wall of dust that was captured on video from Lubbock’s National Weather Service office (see bottom of this post). The temperature at the Lubbock NWS office dropped from 82°F at 7:03 pm CDT to 64°F at 7:10 pm CDT, with winds gusting to 56 mph and visibility down to 0.5 mile in rain and blowing dust.

    https://www.wunderground.com/blog/JeffMasters/comment.html?entrynum=3317#commenttop

    Reply
  43. Abel Adamski

     /  June 1, 2016

    And for some comedy, but seriously an attempt to retain Congress and Senate majorities and gain indefinite control of the Courts and the voting process

    https://au.finance.yahoo.com/news/trump-hits-panic-button-hint-041500199.html

    Trump Hits the Panic Button at the Hint of a Third Party Run

    t’s hard to tell if conservative pundit William Kristol was being serious or just wanted to mess with presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump when he tweeted a promise over the weekend that a conservative third-party alternative to the billionaire would soon declare interest in the presidency.

    “Just a heads up over this holiday weekend: There will be an independent candidate–an impressive one, with a strong team and a real chance,” he wrote.

    Related: The Libertarian Johnson-Weld Ticket Is Bad News for Donald Trump

    It was a strange thing for Kristol, who edits the Weekly Standard, to just toss off in the middle of a holiday weekend. The move to draft a high-status conservative to challenge Trump under the banner of a third party has been around for some time and has so far been thoroughly unsuccessful. Hoped-for candidacies of retired Marine Corps general James Mattis, former GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney or vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan have all fizzled out.

    Kristol’s promise was immediately leapt upon by Trump supporters. Calling it a “betrayal of this country,” Breitbart.com writer David Horowitz huffed, “The Kristol attack on the Republican Party and its presumptive candidate Donald Trump is an attack on all Americans and needs to be seen in that light.”

    Related: Trumpification of the Congressional Agenda Begins

    Trump himself took to Twitter, as is his wont, to blast the conservative pundit as a “loser,” “dummy,” “lightweight” and more. In a series of tweets that suggested a certain degree of nervousness, he warned that if the erstwhile Republican establishment indeed launches or supports a third-party bid, the result would be to hand the presidency to Hillary Clinton.

    “Say Goodbye to the Supreme Court,” Trump warned.

    And there it is in print.
    It is all about control of the Supreme court for the foreseeable future.

    The Campaign to shut down the investigation into Exxon is being presented as the right to free speech, even if that speech is an intentional Lie, Deception or misinformation to obtain benefit or cause serious harm to individuals, the Nation and the economy.

    Tea Party controlled courts would ensure that interpretation is enshrined in law.
    The right to intentionally, lie, deceive, defraud, misinform.
    And they call themselves Christians

    Reply
  44. The Deep State will have fun with Trump, I predict.

    Reply
  1. An agenda of contradictions | Anonymole - apocryphal abecedarian
  2. Dishonest Donald Denies The Ongoing California Drought as Lake Mead Hits New All-Time Record Low | robertscribbler | GarryRogers Nature Conservation
  3. Dishonest Donald Denies The Ongoing California Drought as Lake Mead Hits New All-Time Record Low | 2rhoeas3
  4. Dishonest Donald Denies The Ongoing California Drought as Lake Mead Hits New All-Time Record Low – Earth Network .news

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