Half a World Away From Harvey, Global Warming Fueled Deluges Now Impact 42 Million People

Rising sea surface temperatures in South Asia led to more moisture in the atmosphere, providing this year’s monsoon with its ammunition for torrential rainfall. — The Pacific Standard

While flooding is common in the region, climate change has spurred dramatic weather patterns, greatly exacerbating the damage. As sea temperatures warm, moisture increases, a dynamic also at play in the record-setting rainfall in Texas. — Think Progress

******

With Harvey delivering its own hammer blow of worst-ever-seen rainfall to Texas, 42 million people are now impacted by record flooding half a world away. The one thing that links these two disparate disasters? Climate Change.

A Worsening Flood Disaster in South Asia

As Harvey was setting its sights on the Texas Coast this time last week, another major rainfall disaster was already ongoing. Thousands of miles away, South Asia was experiencing historic flooding that seven days ago had impacted 24 million people.

At the time, two tropical weather systems were developing over a very warm Pacific. They were angling in toward a considerably pumped up monsoonal moisture flow. And they appeared bound and determined to unleash yet more misery on an already suffering region.

As of Monday, the remnants of tropical cyclone Hato had entered the monsoonal flow and was unleashing its heavy rains upon Nepal. The most recent in a long chain of systems that just keeps looping more storms in over the region to disgorge they water loads on submerged lands.

By Wednesday, the number of people suffering from flooding in India, Bangladesh and Nepal had jumped by 18 million in just one week to more than 42 million. With 32 million impacted in India, 8.6 million in Bangladesh, and 1.7 million in Nepal. More tragically, 1,200 people have perished due to both landslides and floods as thousands of square miles have been submerged and whole regions have been crippled with roads, bridges, and airports washing out. Adding to this harsh toll are an estimated 3.5 million homes that have been damaged or destroyed in Bangladesh alone.

Worst impacts are likely to focus on Bangladesh which is down-stream of flooded regions in Nepal and India. As of last week, 1/3 of this low-lying country had been submerged by rising water. With intense rains persisting during recent days, this coverage is likely to have expanded.

Hundreds of thousands of people have now funneled into the country’s growing disaster shelters. A massive international aid effort is underway as food and water supplies are cut off and fears of disease are growing. The international Red Cross and Red Crescent and other relief agencies have deployed over 2,000 medical teams to the region. Meanwhile, calls for increased assistance are growing.

Warmer Oceans Fuel Tropical Climate Extremes

As with Harvey, this year’s South Asia floods have been fueled by much warmer than normal ocean surface temperatures. These warmer than normal ocean surfaces are evaporating copious amounts of moisture into the tropical atmosphere. This moisture, in turn, is intensifying the monsoonal rains.

(Very warm ocean surface temperatures related to global warming are contributing to catastrophic South Asian flooding in which 42 million people are now impacted. Image source: Earth Nullschool.)

In the Bay of Bengal, ocean surfaces have recently hit about 3 C above the three decade average. But ocean waters have been warming now for more than a Century following the initiation of widespread fossil fuel burning. So even the present baseline is above 20th Century temperature norms. At this point, such high levels of ocean heat are clearly having an impact on tropical weather.

In an interview with CNN, Reaz Ahmed, the director-general of Bangladesh’s Department of Disaster Management noted last week that:

“This is not normal. Floods this year were bigger and more intense than the previous years.”

Further exacerbating the situation is that fact that glaciers are melting and temperatures are rising in the Himalayas. This increases water flow into rivers during monsoon season even as glacial melt flow into rivers is reduced during the dry season. It’s kind of a flood-drought whammy in which the dry season is growing hotter and drier for places like India, but the wet season is conversely getting pushed toward worsening flood extremes.

Links:

The Pacific Standard

Think Progress

Earth Nullschool

Nepal, India, Bangladesh Floods Impact Millions

NASA Worldview

Hat tip to Colorado Bob

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172 Comments

  1. wili

     /  August 30, 2017

    Thanks for reminding us of the world outside of Texas/LA!

    These are really horrific storms, almost unbelievable amounts of rain, even for the frequently rainy areas where they are occurring.

    Meanwhile, back stateside, heatwaves and fire threats persist out West:

    https://www.accuweather.com/en/weather-news/wildfire-danger-to-remain-high-in-western-us-as-heat-wave-persists-into-september/70002588

    Reply
    • Jake Peckinpaw

       /  August 31, 2017

      Every day is like an oven. When we first moved to this area – inland a couple hours drive north of SF it was hot in the Summer at times and cool at night because we are at 1200 feet elevation, but last summer and this one it’s been high nineties F almost every day and sometimes north of 100, and very warm at night (mid to high 70’s). That’s the big difference we have noticed, because the cool nights use to allow the house and art studio to cool down considerably but not anywhere near as much

      Also, a side note – almost no moths. Use to be if you turned a light on outside it was swarmed with a multitude of different moth species but not anymore. Also, suddenly this Summer the birds have gone somewhere else. The aquatic birds are still down by the lake but the terrestrial birds are mostly absent. The woodpeckers, blue jays, robins, finches etc. have flown the coup. Even the bats at night are gone. I don’t know if they perished or simply flew off somewhere else.

      All this and with news of the flooding in South Texas and Asia and it’s starting to seem like it’s been screwed up, that is the weather. Transition to renewables as fast as possible and start seriously considering sequestration (not to get at more oil) but to just get the stuff out of the atmosphere. We’ve dug a whole for ourselves and this needs to be a call to arms to work together and try as we may to right the ship.

      Reply
      • eleggua

         /  August 31, 2017

        ‘How Hurricane Harvey is tied to the California heat wave ‘
        August 29, 2017

        http://www.mercurynews.com/2017/08/29/how-hurricane-harvey-is-tied-to-the-california-heat-wave/

        A high-pressure system is lingering over California and the western region, causing extreme heat. This system is expected to continue through the week, bringing record-breaking temperatures with it.

        This high-pressure system is also keeping Tropical Storm Harvey from moving inland. As long as the system remains, Harvey will continue its downpour of rain, making it one of the nation’s most powerful storms…

        Reply
      • eleggua

         /  August 31, 2017

        ‘Bay Area weather: Potentially deadly temperatures expected Labor Day weekend
        Some cities are expected to surpass 110 degrees’
        | UPDATED: August 31, 2017 at 8:53 am

        http://www.mercurynews.com/2017/08/30/bay-area-weather-weekend-heat-wave-may-deliver-record-setting-temperatures/

        “It’s going to be freakishly hot in the Bay Area through Labor Day weekend, with forecasters predicting that the hottest inland areas are going to feel more like Death Valley than the Livermore Valley, which is on tap to approach a 115-degree record set 67 years ago.

        And officials said that’s definitely the kind of heat that gave Death Valley its name.

        “It’s going to be extreme on Friday and Saturday,” said Brian Garcia of the National Weather Service. “We think this could be a potential threat to life if precautions aren’t taken.”…

        Leave the asphalt egg-fry to the cooler climes — an air temperature of 115 degrees registers on a meat thermometer. That’s the internal temperature at which you should take a prime rib off the heat if you like it rare…

        The last time the Bay Area experienced a scorcher was mid-June, when a heat wave played a role in the deaths of two elderly people in San Jose, one a homeless person sheltering in a car. Santa Clara County officials said there have been a total of four heat-related deaths this year. Garcia said in coming days the peaks will surpass that early summer blast.

        “There will be much more widespread heat,” he said. “It’s flat-out going to be hotter.”

        That’s because there’s a big ridge of high pressure blocking any incoming respite from the sea. The offshore jet-stream is being forced up and over the “blocking ridge,” Garcia said.

        “We get into this pressure-cooker thing,” he said. “It will sit in place and have all this air pushing down on us, heating up, and we’re going to have this well into next week.”

        It will be a little better after the weekend peak, but still hot. And Garcia said that can “get cumulative,” as people wait for a break. When it comes, even temperatures that would be normally considered hot are “going to feel like a breath of fresh air.””

        Reply
      • eleggua

         /  August 31, 2017

        Reply
      • eleggua

         /  August 31, 2017

        Magenta Means…
        “Very High Risk – entire population at risk to the heat.”

        Reply
        • Leland Palmer

           /  September 1, 2017

          My wife and I live in Santa Rosa, projected to reach 107 F on Saturday.

          We have AC, and solar cells on the roof. But it is a grid tie system, so if there is a power outage, our AC will go out. She has a party planned for Saturday night. Maybe we ought to fill the hot tub…with cool water. Or the bath tub with cool water, just in case.

          Next step – batteries or a Tesla power wall, and an option to go off grid, I think. We want a Tesla Model 3, anyway.

          Here in the U.S., we have options for power and transportation.. Admittedly, those options themselves have a significant carbon footprint. Hopefully, as we wring more and more fossil fuel use out of our economy, the carbon footprint of AC and batteries will decline.

  2. eleggua

     /  August 30, 2017

    wharf rat posted about this to an earlier thread. Fukushima-esque.

    “Arkema: No way to prevent explosion at flooded Texas chemical plant’

    All residents within 1.5 miles of a chemical plant in southeast Texas were evacuated on Tuesday because of the rising risk of an explosion.
    The evacuation was taken as a “precautionary measure.”
    The owner of the plant, Arkema, said in a statement the situation at its Crosby, Texas, plant “has become serious” and evacuated all of its staff from the facility.

    https://www.cnbc.com/2017/08/30/arkema-ceo-no-way-to-potentially-stop-an-explosion.html


    Arkema chemical plant raising possible risk of explosion
    Arkema chemical plant raising possible risk of explosion
    7 Hours Ago | 03:22

    Arkema SA expects chemicals to catch fire or explode at its heavily flooded plant in Crosby, Texas in the coming days, and has no way to prevent that from happening, the chief executive officer of the company’s North America unit said on Wednesday.

    The company evacuated remaining workers on Tuesday and Harris County ordered the evacuation of residents in a 1.5-mile radius of the plant that makes organic chemicals.

    Richard Rowe, CEO of the North America unit, told reporters that chemicals on the site will catch fire and explode if they are not properly cooled, and that Arkema expects that to happen within the next six days as temperatures rise. He said the company has no way to prevent that because the plant is swamped by about six feet of water.

    Rowe said the company was “comfortable” with the size of the evacuation zone.

    Rowe did not disclose the volume of chemicals on the site and said it was speculative to predict how much damage the plant could sustain. He said there could be an “intense fire” that would result in significant black smoke but would not pose any “long-term harm or impact.”

    The plant is near a section of Interstate 90 that has been underwater and closed.

    The plant has been without electric service since Sunday. Back-up generators have largely been inundated with water, the company said.

    Chemicals on site are stored at low temperatures and can catch fire or explode at higher temperatures. The plant lost refrigeration when backup generators were flooded and then workers transferred products from the warehouses into diesel-powered refrigerated containers. The company said some refrigeration of back-up containers has been compromised because of high-water levels and the company is monitoring temperature levels remotely.

    The Federal Aviation Administration has temporarily barred flights over the area near the plant because of the risk of fire or explosion.

    Harvey, which came ashore in Texas last week as a powerful Category 4 hurricane, has caused catastrophic flooding. Other chemical plants have also shuttered production in Texas because of the hurricane.”

    Reply
    • eleggua

       /  August 30, 2017

      ‘Arkema Inc. incident news’
      6:50 pm est., August 29, 2017

      http://www.arkema-americas.com/en/social-responsibility/incident-news/

      “As of late this afternoon, the situation at the Crosby site had become serious. In order to ensure the safety of our ride-out team, all personnel have been evacuated from the site at this time. We are working with the Department of Homeland Security and the State of Texas to set up a command post in a suitable location near our site. We also have been in contact with other regulatory authorities, who are aware of this situation.

      Arkema manufactures organic peroxides at the Crosby plant. The primary challenge has been maintaining refrigeration for these products, which are stored at low temperature. The site lost refrigeration to all of its cold-storage warehouses when electrical power was lost and back-up generators were flooded. Our team then transferred products from the warehouses into diesel-powered refrigerated containers, and continued to monitor the situation.

      At this time, refrigeration on some of our back-up product storage containers has been compromised due to extremely high water, rising to levels that are unprecedented in the Crosby area. Arkema is limited in what it can do to address the site conditions until the storm abates. We are monitoring the temperature of each refrigeration container remotely. At this time, while we do not believe there is any imminent danger, the potential for a chemical reaction leading to a fire and/or explosion within the site confines is real.

      We have no higher priority than the safety of our employees, neighbors and the environment. We have been working without pause to keep our materials safe.”

      Reply
    • DrTskoul

       /  August 30, 2017

      Fun! Organic peroxides. Nothing to do with nuclear contamination though.. more like a fertilizer plant explosion. They make mostly hydrogen peroxide, dental bleaching agents, and polymerization initiators. An explosion risk.. nothing close to toxic contamination…

      Reply
      • DrTskoul

         /  August 30, 2017

        And I was sarcastic with “Fun”… Serious but not Fukushima…Not even close

        Reply
        • eleggua

           /  August 30, 2017

          There’s no comfort in “not even close”. Nothing to “poo-poo” about. It is serious; leave it at that.

      • eleggua

         /  August 30, 2017

        I did not say it had anything to do with nuclear anything.
        Fukushima-esque not Fukushima.

        Reply
    • Witchee

       /  August 31, 2017

      not I 90, 10 maybe.

      Reply
        • eleggua

           /  August 31, 2017

          On the left side of ^^^that GMaps page is a link for Arkema Inc. Reviews.
          Sample:

          “Edward Lentz
          ★ in the last week
          Hey Arkema CEO Rich Rowe. Come stay with us here in Crosby. We are 1.7 miles South of your facility. Bring your family, your kids can play with mine and wait for the big boom. Thanks for being so forthcoming on the information. You are a piece of trash. A special place in hell for corporate trash like yourself.”

          “giovanni de petris
          ★ in the last week
          A company that makes people leave their homes because is going to have an explosion but does not tell anyone what is going to explode, or what will leak and what will happen to people animal environment is not a company that can even score zero.
          this is the behavior of african companies owned by criminals
          and happens because of Texas laws!
          How dare you then to ask for federal money when the most basic rules of civilized living are flaunted by this nonsense? tell us what in the world is going to leak out!!!!”

          “Joe R
          ★ in the last week
          I am sure they could not have predicted this. I mean, nothing bad ever happens when chemical mix together, yes?Besides, this never happens. The incidents since 2001 were all freak incidents and one in a million situations. you know, the ones that happened in Fort Worth, Channelview, Deer Park, Vealmoor, Floyd, Crane, Sacul, Big Spring, Orange, Ferris, Marshall, Galveston Bay, Brookshire, Muleshoe, Alvin, Lockhart, New Berlin, Friendswood, Texas City, Woodville, Celina, College Statioin, Refugio, Conroe, Ingleside, Snyder, Woodward, Schulenburg, Cleburne, West Odessa, Mont Belvieu, Hutchins, Corpus Christi, Floresville, Lubbock, Spring, Rosharon, New London, Anderson, Granbury, Carthage, Manvel, Falls City, Sunray, Chireno, Richardson, Haltom City, Buffalo, Bryant, Nacogdoches, Vanderbilt, Bellville, San Angelo, Tyler, Moss Bluff, Hamilton, Sweetwater, Rankin, Eagle Lake, Carrizo Springs, Pasadena, Whittier, Levelland, Leander, Odessa, Silsbee, Southlawn, Arlington, Powell, Kermit, Pearsall, Freeport, Midloathian, Seguin, Dallas, Port Lavaca, New Braunfels, Pampa, Beaumont, Houston, Coyanosa, Harlingen, El Paso, Baytown, Lowery Crossing, Angleton, Austin, West, Three Rivers, Alice, Franklin, Rosenberg, Bishop, La Gloria, Stairtown, Pasedena, Almeda, Willis, Midkiff, Ft. Worth, Port Neches, Sulphur Springs, Evadale, Urbana, Luling, Nixon, La Porte, Lufkin, Norias, Monahans, Sandy Point, Mckinney, Crosby, Stanton, Port Arthur, East Waco, Texarkana, Borger, Point Comfort, Graham, Erving, Upshur, The Woodlands, Gallatin, Bryan, Long Lake, San Antonio, Jasper, Longview, Weldon, Alvarado and Jacksonville? ”

          “Soulful2
          ★ in the last week
          This is what happens when you get rid of Community Right To Know rules.”

          “Rebecca Allen
          ★ in the last week
          Wow, Arkema won’t release their chemical data info. And it’s about to explode. HORRIFIC!!”

          “Tim Stahl
          ★ in the last week
          Is this the plant that smelled horrible on the other side of the lake…fumes blowing in our direction from the plant. ”

          “Mitchell Clark
          ★ in the last week
          Thank you for not releasing your tier 2 chemical inventory that used to be required to be submitted to the public 2 years ago”

          “Jason Crum
          ★ in the last week
          Arkema has scheduled a free fireworks for Harvey Hurricane victims! Stand by! ”

          “howard phelps
          ★ in the last week
          I sure hope we can get this company out of are neighborhood”

    • eleggua

       /  September 1, 2017

      “…we still remain in the dark about dangerous chemicals.”

      Editorial
      ‘The disaster in Crosby is purely man-made.
      As a chemical plant burns, Texans remain in the dark about toxic threats.’
      August 31, 2017

      http://www.houstonchronicle.com/opinion/editorials/article/The-disaster-in-Crosby-is-purely-man-made-12165693.php

      First came the water; then came the fire.

      Explosions and flames erupted into the air at a chemical plant in Crosby very early Thursday morning. Floodwaters had knocked out the cooling system needed to prevent organic peroxides from breaking down, and also blocked any path for workers to get back to the site and prevent the disaster.

      Now the surrounding residents, living 25 miles northeast of downtown Houston, have been instructed to shut their doors and windows, turn off air conditioners and do everything possible to avoid breathing in the acrid smoke and fumes pouring out of the plant owned by Arkema Inc.

      So what, exactly, is in the air?

      That’s a very good question.

      As Chronicle reporters Mark Collette and Matt Dempsey revealed in their 2016 “Chemical Breakdown” series, more than 2,500 facilities throughout the Greater Houston region contain stockpiles of explosive or toxic materials. Federal safety inspections are rare and our state government helps corporations conceal contents. Politicians, industry leaders and their lobbyists have been working for years to keep Texans ignorant about the chemicals and toxins that dot our landscape.

      Rich Rowe, Arkema’s CEO, is just another example. He refused to make public the plant’s chemical inventory or its federally mandated risk management plan, the Chronicle reported.

      Exposure to the Arkema fire has sent 15 sheriff’s deputies to the hospital as of this writing, yet the company still won’t explain the specific sort of adverse health effects that people should expect from the emissions. The company also couldn’t answer pointed question by Dempsey about why volatile materials weren’t neutralized before workers fled the site.

      A known carcinogen – polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons – has already been detected in the smoke, according to Neil Carman, clean air director for the Sierra Club’s Lone Star Chapter.

      Who knows how bad things really are?

      All across Houston’s chemical complexes, as Hurricane Harvey bore down, odors and flames settled into the cloud-filled sky. At least 32 air emission events were reported with the Texas Commission for Environmental Quality, and at least 20 chemical or gas leaks have been listed by the Coast Guard’s National Response Center.

      The National Response Center’s log of spills and emissions, Chronicle’s business columnist Chris Tomlinson noted, hasn’t been updated since Sunday.

      In 2013, 15 people died and more than 160 others were left injured after the West Chemical and Fertilizer Company erupted in a massive explosion. Dozens of homes were destroyed but apparently no lessons were learned. A 2016 report conducted by the U.S. Chemical Safety Board found that Texas had failed to respond to the disaster with laws or regulations that would keep Texans safe from a similar sad fate.

      How many more people have to end up in the hospital – or the morgue – before our politicians treat chemical threats with a sense of deadly seriousness?

      Harvey was an act of God.

      The disaster in Crosby is purely man-made.

      Gov. Greg Abbott has the ability to call a special session and demand that the Legislature pass laws mandating transparency, safety and land use rules that will prevent future disasters. Until then, we look to Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg, County Attorney Vince Ryan and federal prosecutors to investigate Arkema and other companies with serious scrutiny.

      The lights may finally be coming on at homes across the Gulf Coast, but we still remain in the dark about dangerous chemicals.”

      Reply
  3. eleggua

     /  August 30, 2017

    Port Arthur is almost gone.

    ‘Nation’s largest oil refinery in Port Arthur, Texas shut down; mayor says ‘whole city is underwater’
    August 30, 2017

    “The nation’s largest oil refinery was shuttered Wednesday in Texas, as the mayor of Port Arthur said his “whole city is underwater” — all while Tropical Storm Harvey continued to pummel Southeast Texas with torrential rainfall.

    Motiva Enterprises said in a statement Wednesday it began the shutdown around 5 a.m. of all units at the nation’s largest refinery, located about 100 miles east of Houston, due to flooding at the Port Arthur plant.

    The Port Arthur refinery, which produces 603,000 barrels per day, was lashed by heavy rain and portions of the facility were flooded, Reuters reported. The company that operates the plant said a return to service is “contingent upon recession of flood waters in the area.”

    The plant supplies gasoline and diesel to thousands of retail outlets under the iconic Shell and 76-brands, according to FOX 26 Houston.

    A rain gauge at Beaumont-Port Arthur Airport has received about 25 inches in the last 24 hours, for a total of 39.22 inches in the last three days.

    Elsewhere in the Gulf City, weary evacuees at the Bowers Civic Center were overrun by floodwaters spawned by Harvey, according to Jefferson County sheriff’s deputy Marcus McLellan.

    At least 100 displaced people were forced to head up to bleacher seats, abandoning cots and belongings on the civic center floor, which was under about a foot of water. They were being relocated to the Carl Parker Center, city officials said.

    Some residents were also taking shelter in a bowling alley.

    Port Arthur Mayor Derrick Freeman said on Facebook that rescue teams were fighting an apartment fire in the midst of the storm, and dump trucks headed to different neighborhoods across the city.

    “Our whole city is under water right now but we are coming! If you called, we are coming,” Freeman wrote. “Please get to higher ground if you can, but please try stay out of attics.”

    By Travis Fedschun
    Published August 30, 2017
    Fox News

    Now Playing

    Residents evacuated as Harvey floodwaters swamp Port Arthur
    Close

    The nation’s largest oil refinery was shuttered Wednesday in Texas, as the mayor of Port Arthur said his “whole city is underwater” — all while Tropical Storm Harvey continued to pummel Southeast Texas with torrential rainfall.

    Motiva Enterprises said in a statement Wednesday it began the shutdown around 5 a.m. of all units at the nation’s largest refinery, located about 100 miles east of Houston, due to flooding at the Port Arthur plant.
    In this photo provided by Beulah Johnson, evacuees sit in the bleachers at the Bowers Civic Center in Port Arthur, Texas, Wednesday, Aug. 30, 2017, after floodwaters caused by Tropical Storm Harvey inundated the facility overnight. Authorities said it’s not clear where the evacuees will go. (Beulah Johnson via AP) Expand / Collapse

    In this photo provided by Beulah Johnson, evacuees sit in the bleachers at the Bowers Civic Center in Port Arthur, Texas, Wednesday, Aug. 30, 2017, after floodwaters caused by Tropical Storm Harvey inundated the facility overnight (Beulah Johnson via AP)

    The Port Arthur refinery, which produces 603,000 barrels per day, was lashed by heavy rain and portions of the facility were flooded, Reuters reported. The company that operates the plant said a return to service is “contingent upon recession of flood waters in the area.”

    The plant supplies gasoline and diesel to thousands of retail outlets under the iconic Shell and 76-brands, according to FOX 26 Houston.

    A rain gauge at Beaumont-Port Arthur Airport has received about 25 inches in the last 24 hours, for a total of 39.22 inches in the last three days.

    Elsewhere in the Gulf City, weary evacuees at the Bowers Civic Center were overrun by floodwaters spawned by Harvey, according to Jefferson County sheriff’s deputy Marcus McLellan.

    At least 100 displaced people were forced to head up to bleacher seats, abandoning cots and belongings on the civic center floor, which was under about a foot of water. They were being relocated to the Carl Parker Center, city officials said.

    Some residents were also taking shelter in a bowling alley.

    Port Arthur Mayor Derrick Freeman said on Facebook that rescue teams were fighting an apartment fire in the midst of the storm, and dump trucks headed to different neighborhoods across the city.

    “Our whole city is under water right now but we are coming! If you called, we are coming,” Freeman wrote. “Please get to higher ground if you can, but please try stay out of attics.”

    The city put out a plea for boats Wednesday morning, saying on Twitter “Individuals with boats are needed in Port Arthur for rescues.”

    City officials put out an additional grim warning, saying “If you need rescued please display a white towel, sheet, shirt or anything to let volunteer rescuers know.”

    Jefferson County Judge Jeff Branick told KBMT-TV hundreds, if not thousands of homes, are inundated with water, adding the city is “being overwhelmed with calls for service.”

    “There are people that are needing to be rescued and evacuated, brought to sheltering areas and given the nighttime hours, the darkness, it’s impossible to wage a boat rescue and we simply don’t have enough high-water vehicles that are available to us,” Branick told the television station.

    At least one body was found floating in floodwaters in nearby Beaumont, according to KMBT.

    After drenching Texas, Harvey is forecast to drop substantial amounts of rain on Louisiana before moving on to Arkansas, Tennessee and parts of Missouri, which could also see flooding.”

    Reply
    • Can we get a story on this from a source other than Fox News? I don’t want to host any links to that source.

      Reply
      • eleggua

         /  August 31, 2017

        Yes, they are hideous, odious and loathesome. Will bypass them from now on.

        ‘Port Arthur Faces Harvey Flooding Disaster: ‘Our Whole City Is Underwater’’
        AUG. 30, 2017

        “…Port Arthur’s mayor, Derrick Freeman, said on Facebook early Wednesday morning that rescue teams were contending with fires while trying to get residents to safety.

        “Our whole city is underwater right now,” he wrote, in a message of encouragement that nonetheless communicated the distress the city was facing.

        …As news reports teemed with images from Port Arthur showing flooded homes and shelters, the city’s name began to trend on Twitter early Wednesday morning as dozens of residents posted their addresses and conditions, saying that they were trapped in their houses with children and older people in dire need of assistance. Even the city itself used Twitter to call for help.

        A judge in Jefferson County, Jeff Branick, told a local news reporter that hundreds if not thousands of people were stranded on their roofs, on top of cars and in attics.

        …The Port Arthur-based Motiva oil refinery, the nation’s largest such facility, confirmed reports that it had started a controlled shutdown in response to the flooding.”

        Reply
      • eleggua

         /  August 31, 2017

        ‘Oil refineries shut down as Harvey floods fuel contamination fears ‘
        30 August, 2017

        https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/aug/30/storm-harvey-texas-louisiana-floods-houston

        “Ten oil refineries in the impact zone of tropical storm Harvey have been shut down as a precaution against potential contamination from flooding in the region, as the storm began to move away from Houston late Wednesday, the US department of energy announced….

        Six refineries have begun the process of assessing damage and restarting, while two refineries in the Gulf Coast region are operating at reduced rates, the department said.

        A major refinery in Port Arthur was closed on Wednesday after cutting its output to 40% a day earlier. Refineries operated by Exxon, Shell and other companies have released pollutants as torrential rains damaged storage tanks and other industrial facilities on the Texas Coast, the Associated Press reported, although it is not clear the significance of the environmental risk they pose…

        A retirement home outside Beaumont was evacuated by airboat, with agents from the Gulf states of Florida and Louisiana participating. The veterans’ administration moved nurses from Dallas, 250 miles north, to relieve nurses in Houston.

        The Texas Department of Public Safety said 48,700 homes in the area have sustained flood damage, including 17,000 with major damage and 1,000 that were destroyed. The state estimated that 700 businesses had been damaged.

        Jeff Lindner, a meteorologist with the Harris County flood control district, told the AP that in the Houston area, “the water levels are going down. And that’s for the first time in several days”. But in Port Arthur, near the coast, rescue teams struggled to reach desperate residents.

        “Hundreds, if not thousands of people are stranded because of high water,” Jeff Branick, a senior administrator in Jefferson County, told the Beaumont Enterprise. “There are people that have crawled into their attic, are on top of the cars because they were not physically able to get on to their roofs.”

        Cots and belongings were abandoned on the floor of a civic centre in Port Arthur that was serving as a shelter for at least a hundred people when a foot of water rushed in, the Associated Press reported. Evacuees took to bleacher seats; another shelter in Beaumont had reached its 600 capacity…

        “Our whole city is underwater right now but we are coming,” Port Arthur mayor Derrick Freeman posted on Facebook overnight.

        More than 400,000 people live in the Beaumont-Port Arthur area, which is home to numerous industrial facilities, including the country’s largest oil refinery, which was shutting down because of conditions….

        Even as the storm moved away from Houston, officials warned that a levee north of the city was in danger of failing, possibly sending water to the rooftops of homes in the immediate area. Some residents have remained despite an evacuation order…

        Beaumont police said in a statement on Tuesday that after driving into high water and becoming stuck, a woman floated for about half a mile, holding on to her small child. They were pulled into a boat by first responders who were able to save the child, who had hypothermia, but the woman died.

        …But the situation (in Houston) remained dire. Many streets remain under water and some will be so for days, if not weeks. More shelters have opened to handle the swelling numbers of people seeking refuge and to ease the pressure on the biggest shelter, a downtown convention centre that was operating at double its intended 5,000 capacity.”

        Reply
      • eleggua

         /  September 1, 2017

        “No race, no color, no predjudices any kinda way, just willing to help.”

        Reply
  4. eleggua

     /  August 30, 2017

    Hurricane Harvey Coverage LIVE on CBSN

    Flash flood watches expanding in Memphis, Kentucky, etc.

    Reply
  5. eleggua

     /  August 30, 2017
    Reply
    • eleggua

       /  August 30, 2017

      “Doctors were forced to improvise when there was no brain surgeon around.

      After working for days on end during the storm at Lyndon B. Johnson Hospital in northeast Houston, Dr. Vladimir Melnikov finally got out on his bicycle on a windy, dry Wednesday afternoon. The memories of the preceding days were fresh on his mind.

      “We were on this island, a hospital surrounded by water everywhere,” he said.

      A patient injured in a motorcycle accident was bleeding into his brain on Sunday night. He needed urgent brain surgery, but there was no neurosurgeon to do it, and no way to transfer the patient.

      After consulting with the patient’s family, and speaking with neurosurgeons by phone, Dr. Erik P. Askenasy, a colon and rectal surgeon, opened the man’s skull to relieve the pressure and remove a blood clot.

      Dr. Melnikov, an anesthesiologist, monitored the patient and watched as the surgeon “did it so elegantly” that no blood transfusion was required. When the wind died down, the patient was transferred to another hospital for continuing care.

      Dr. Askenasy “was trapped with us in this small hospital, and he was an ortho surgeon, a neurosurgeon and a general surgeon, because we didn’t have relief,” Dr. Melkinov said.

      “We just worked nonstop,” he added. “Very skillful and really dedicated and courageous people were in the right positions.””

      Reply
  6. eleggua

     /  August 30, 2017

    ‘Oil refineries have released 2 million pounds of chemicals in Harvey’s wake, and scientists are worried’
    Aug. 30, 2017

    http://www.businessinsider.com/oil-refineries-hit-harvey-releasing-chemicals-pollutants-2017-8

    “…more than two million pounds of hazardous chemicals have been released into the air, according to filings reported with the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality and first reported by Politico.

    Those chemicals include cancer-causing and potentially lethal gases like carbon monoxide and benzene, among others.

    Shortly after Harvey made landfall, companies including Exxon Mobil and Valero Energy began to shutter local facilities and evacuate workers, taking close to a fifth of the nation’s total refining capacity offline.

    Yet those efforts failed, in many cases, to prevent the release of hazardous pollutants into the environment.

    In some cases, companies were forced to intentionally burn chemicals as a means of disposing them in anticipation of the storm. Chevron Phillips, the company that reported the largest release, burned close to 800,000 pounds of chemicals — nearly 300,000 of which were the colorless, odorless, and potentially deadly gas carbon monoxide — as it shuttered its plant to prepare for Harvey. …

    At Exxon’s Baytown plant, the floating roof covering one tank “partially sank during the excess rain event” from the storm, it noted in a TCEQ filing showing that close to 13,000 pounds of chemicals — including cancer-causing benzene and toxic lung-irritant xylene — had been released. Similarly, officials at Kinder Morgan’s Pasadena terminal, which released close to 300,000 pounds of chemicals, noted in a filing that several floating roof tanks were “impacted by torrential downpour” from Harvey.

    Wei-Chun Chin, a professor of engineering at the University of California, Merced who has contributed research on the after-effects of oil spills like Deepwater Horizon, told Business Insider that although the immediate effects of these pollutants on the air sound concerning, he is more worried about the potential for some of those chemicals to stick around.

    “I’m more concerned about things that could have a lingering effect and stay in the soil,” said Chin. “Benzene is a known carcinogen. So if that’s coming back into the ground that would be very bad.”

    Still, Chin said that researchers’ ability to get accurate numbers on these pollutants is very limited right now.

    “In many of these areas, the air monitoring stations are suspended. With no measurement we just don’t know the concentrations,” he said.

    TCEQ is delaying any response to the leaks until flood waters have receded, according to a statement.

    “In an ongoing emergency response, the TCEQ and other state agencies give priority to protecting and preventing imminent threats to public health,” the statement reads. “Once flood waters have receded, and it is safe to enter flooded areas, debris removal activities will commence. The TCEQ is aware that spills occur during flooding events, and the appropriate primary agency will monitor and work with the responsible party, if known, to take appropriate actions as conditions allow.”

    Exxon-Mobil did not respond to a request for comment. “

    Reply
    • I am a chemist by training, and worked in that industry for 10 years, along with a research lab my 3 summers of university. Reading of the leaks, the potential explosions from losing power, and thus temperature control – this is appropriate to know:

      Most plastics and pharmaceuticals are the end product (likely among many end products) after a series of chemical reactions. No one wants these intermediate materials to escape, but the worst of the chemicals are the unstable ones produced in the middle stages, then used in the next stage.

      The bulk materials of gasoline and even the black-top for roads are the less profitable per pound results of the many reactions done in a cracking plant or a chemical plant. They are nearly all poisonous, and without them the medicine and plastics will end. (no coatings on wires, no keys on this keyboard.)

      We will shut them all down – or at least they will all cease. Before or after we kill ourselves off and take the biosphere with us?… in my view, that’s the open question.

      Reply
      • eleggua

         /  August 31, 2017

        Fukushima-esque, indeed.

        ‘Harvey reveals corporate hubris regarding safety’
        By Chris Tomlinson Published 1:41 pm, Thursday, August 31, 2017

        http://www.chron.com/business/columnists/tomlinson/article/Harvey-reveals-corporate-hubris-regarding-safety-12164662.php

        Richard Rennard, the president of Arkema, shrugged his shoulders when asked what more his company could have done to prevent chemicals from burning at his plant in Crosby.

        He rattled off the systems his company employed to chill the organic peroxides: Grid power, back-up generators, nitrogen coolers and ultimately refrigerated trailers. On Thursday the refrigerator systems began shutting down and the peroxides began burning and blowing the lids off their containers.

        After the disaster at the Fukushima nuclear power plant in Japan, every facility with dangerous materials should know to keep back-up generators above any potential flood line. Yet that precaution escaped Arkema.

        Rennard’s fatalism in the face of a natural disaster is disingenuous. Experts identified the plant as high-risk, and Arkema could have designed a more resilient facility. But it didn’t, most likely because management considered the risk too low and the costs too high.

        We know this because the Houston Chronicle identified Arkema as a potentially dangerous plant in an award-winning 2016 investigative series called “Chemical Breakdown.” In response to my colleague Matt Dempsey’s inquiries about safety, plant manager Wendal Turley assured the newspaper that every precaution had been taken.

        “The safety of our workforce and community are paramount in everything we do. We take our commitment to safe operations and compliance with federal and state regulations very seriously,” Turley wrote. “We regularly meet with our community and local officials and strive to be a good neighbor at all times.”

        Arkema executives told their neighbors to flee their homes this week. No one is explaining why Arkema didn’t simply dilute the peroxides, which would have ruined them, but at least would have prevented the fires and explosions.

        Rennard’s refusal to take responsibility for what’s happening at his plant is sadly typical. Yet when reporters like Dempsey or neighborhood groups come asking questions, refinery and petrochemical executives become indignant, insisting that outsiders are too ignorant of chemistry and therefore misunderstand the risk.

        In public statement after public statement, companies working with hazardous materials or processes in Houston declare that their engineers have anticipated every eventuality, that the public has nothing to fear. Go away, they say, nothing to see here.

        Yet since Hurricane Harvey struck, Houston area companies have filed 32 air emission event reports with the Texas Commission for Environmental Quality. The Coast Guard’s National Response Center has listed chemical or gas leaks in at least 20 locations in Greater Houston.

        Those executives are also shrugging their shoulders, rhetorically asking, “What can you do? Stuff happens.”

        For example, a pipeline owned by Oklahoma’s Williams Cos. leaked anhydrous hydrogen chloride, a corrosive and poisonous gas, in La Porte on Monday. “Williams will review the incident to determine its cause,” the company said in a terse statement.

        A roof collapse triggered the release of more than 12,000 pounds of potentially toxic chemical compounds at an ExxonMobil facility in Baytown. “This is an unprecedented storm, and we have taken every effort to minimize emissions,” Exxon spokeswoman Charlotte Huffaker said.

        The National Response Center’s log of spills and emissions, by the way, hasn’t been updated since Sunday.

        Far more polluting than leaks, though, is the shutdown and start-up process at refineries and petrochemical plants. Two million pounds of dangerous chemicals were released in Houston when they shut down between Monday and Wednesday. More has been released since then, and millions more will be released when the plants restart.

        Only 5.2 million pounds of emissions were reported in all of 2016. None of these companies are volunteering to reduce emissions by improving their facilities.

        Adding to the frustration is the mealy-mouthed language that Rennard and his ilk spew when their companies are forced fess up to their failures.

        In Rennard’s world, compounds don’t burn, they degrade. Chemicals don’t explode, they combust. The smoke is noxious, but he won’t say if it is toxic.

        This may be appropriate in a chemistry class, but a concerned public expects straight talk, which it’s not getting.

        If we learn nothing else from Harvey, let it be the danger of hubris. Despite claims to the contrary, executives will decide that mitigating a risk costs too much, and subsequent events will prove that they made a horrible mistake.

        That’s why regulators, journalists and citizen groups have a role to play in demanding accountability and revealing the risks taken. Because when it comes to chemicals, the public shares in the consequences of a bad decision and often pays the highest price.

        Let’s be honest, Harvey is not causing accidents. The storm is revealing the risks executives willingly took. No one has the right to shrug their shoulders and say, “C’est la vie.””

        Reply
        • eleggua

           /  August 31, 2017

          ‘Authorities’ ^there seem to be protecting Arkema’s interest re: info release.

          Arkema guy at 11min21sec
          Richard Rennard. “Acrylic Monomers” boss, apparently part of Arkema.
          “safest thing to do, allow those other 8 containers’ product to degrade and burn.”

          Great. Bet those folks downwind are happy to hear that. Heartless, corporate weasel.

  7. coloradobob

     /  August 30, 2017

    “Hurricane” comes from a Taino Indian word for the God of Evil.

    Via the PBS News Hour

    Reply
    • eleggua

       /  August 31, 2017

      Checking that comes up with conflicting origins and meanings. “God of Storms” is another translation and is more often cited. Some sources cite different tribes as the source.

      Wiktionary says
      “mid 16th century: from Spanish huracán, probably from Taino hurakán ‘god of the storm.’

      Borrowed from Spanish huracán, ultimately from the name of the Taino storm god Juracán whom the Taínos believed dwelled on El Yunque mountain and, when he was upset, sent the strong winds and rain upon them.”

      Heard an news broadcaster misquote Jurassic Park re: floating fire ant colonies.
      “Animals find a way.” Bonk. Wrong.

      Reply
  8. coloradobob

     /  August 31, 2017

    Current tropical systems on a map thru next 15-days from ECMWF EPS (12z)
    Most #Irma tracks very intense (Cat 4+) w/U.S. threats.

    ?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Fdisqus.com%2Fembed%2Fcomments%2F%3Fbase%3Ddefault%26f%3Dwund%26t_i%3Dwww%252Fcat6%252Ftropical-storm-irma-forms-eastern-atlantic%26t_u%3Dhttps%253A%252F%252Fwww.wunderground.com%252Fcat6%252Ftropical-storm-irma-forms-eastern-atlantic%26t_e%3DTropical%2520Storm%2520Irma%2520Forms%2520in%2520the%2520Eastern%2520Atlantic%2520by%2520Dr.%2520Jeff%2520Masters%2520%257C%2520Category%25206%26t_d%3DTropical%2520Storm%2520Irma%2520Forms%2520in%2520the%2520Eastern%2520Atlantic%2520by%2520Dr.%2520Jeff%2520Masters%2520%257C%2520Category%25206%2520%257C%2520Weather%2520Underground%26t_t%3DTropical%2520Storm%2520Irma%2520Forms%2520in%2520the%2520Eastern%2520Atlantic%2520by%2520Dr.%2520Jeff%2520Masters%2520%257C%2520Category%25206%26s_o%3Ddefault%23version%3D6f5768194208e9ee5ea7d3e7ec8ac168

    Reply
  9. Suzanne

     /  August 31, 2017

    Dr. James Hansen on Democracy Now explaining the links between Harvey and CC…

    Reply
    • Thanks for this, Suzanne. Excellent talk here by Hansen.

      Reply
      • Suzanne

         /  August 31, 2017

        🙂 And thank you for the well informed and written updates on the catastrophe that is Harvey and the other extreme weather events throughout the world. So much devastation…hard to take it all in.

        Reply
        • Working on a couple more at the moment. Pace is slowed down a bit due to the fact that I’ve got a radio interview to prepare for (thx eleggua). Will try to get a few more out this afternoon and tonight. Exciting movement on the renewable energy front. 350.org + Bill McKibben just launched a 100 percent renewable energy campaign. Fantastic and the Nature study on solar as well as the continued cost reductions for wind are fantastic. If we could get good policy in line with the larger RE trend at most national levels, we’d have a real climate victory underway. We’d be on much better ground to begin the next phase of climate change mitigation (atmopsheric drawdown). Renewables are the horse driving this cart, though. We should be very clear on that.

        • eleggua

           /  August 31, 2017

          Answered my question just posted. (You’re welcome. thank you)

          https://kpfa.org/program/the-visionary-activist-show/

          5PM EST, 2PM PST Today, Thursday August 31st

          RobertScribbler radio appearance on KPFA.org

          08.31.17 – 2:00pm
          The Visionary Activist Show – ‘A Renaissance of Reverent Ingenuity’

          Guiding political*scientific strategy for a Renaissance of Reverent Ingenuity –
          Caroline hosts Nick Brana, chief catalyst for the Draft Bernie movement & conference (D.C. Sept 8-10)
          and
          welcomes back Rob Fanney (aka Robert Scribbler) among our most trust-worthy climate crisis guides as we consider our effective response to catastrophe.

        • Leland Palmer

           /  September 1, 2017

          Hansen also cautiously acknowledged the possibility that the stalling behavior Harvey and other extreme weather events may be connected with changes the jet stream, as published by Michael Mann. He said that this was ongoing research.

          Influence of Anthropogenic Climate Change on Planetary Wave Resonance and Extreme Weather Events

          http://www.readcube.com/articles/10.1038/srep45242

          Still trying to read the paper myself, it’s very dense. Glad it makes sense to somebody.

  10. coloradobob

     /  August 31, 2017

    Hell came to breakfast .

    Reply
  11. coloradobob

     /  August 31, 2017

    The physics doesn’t care .

    The physics doesn’t care how much money the fossil fuel interests pour into our politics. In fact the physics just delivered a clear message to the very heart of those fossil
    fuel interests .

    The simple fact is , they are wounded . Their own lobbing has brought this disaster down on their heads.

    Reply
    • eleggua

       /  September 1, 2017

      ‘Gas shortages in Texas as Harvey knocks out refineries’
      August 31, 2017

      https://www.cbsnews.com/news/gas-shortages-in-texas-as-harvey-knocks-out-refineries/

      “Drivers in northern Texas are rushing to fill up their gas tanks as prices at the pump in the area rise and some stations run out of fuel altogether as Harvey continues to wreak havoc. …

      The majority of North Texas gas stations are not expected to run out of gas, but costs are expected to rise. Gas prices in the region are up almost 20 cents from this time last week, CBS Dallas-Fort Worth reported. That jump comes just ahead of the Labor Day holiday weekend, which typically sees heavy driving….

      Elsewhere in the state, scuffles were reported at gas stations, according to postings on social media…

      “There’s a glut of crude, but there’s never a glut of gasoline during driving season because we operate on ‘just-in-time’ refining,” said Tom Kloza, global head of energy analysis at the Oil Price Information Service. “Now we’ve lost about 40 percent of our ability to make gasoline east of the Rockies. We’re seeing apoplectic increases in the futures market and even more so in the spot market.”

      Kloza predicted “a couple weeks of very serious scrambling, serious price increases,” noting that prices could go up by as much as 50 cents a gallon in some parts of the country.

      Northern Texas was particularly affected because it’s supplied by a few pipelines that have shut down, Kloza said. Those pipes also supply the lower Midwest and the Ohio Valley, a region that also could be affected. And southern states are beginning to see price spikes amid news that a major pipeline that delivers gas to the region would close indefinitely.

      Colonial Pipeline on Thursday announced it was shutting down a major line that runs from Pasadena, Texas, to Linden, N.J. The pipeline, a crucial artery in the nation’s fuel-supply network, includes more than 5,500 miles of pipe and supplies nearly 40 percent of the South’s gasoline….”

      Reply
      • eleggua

         /  September 1, 2017

        “The pipeline, a crucial artery in the nation’s fuel-supply network, includes more than 5,500 miles of pipe and supplies nearly 40 percent of the South’s gasoline.”

        Reply
  12. Greg

     /  August 31, 2017

    Tragedy everywhere. Hard to stay on target but here goes:
    Wind and solar power are on track to exceed expectations. Again.
    New reports suggest a renewables revolution is imminent over and above what we have seen so far:
    https://www.vox.com/platform/amp/energy-and-environment/2017/8/30/16224582/wind-solar-exceed-expectations-again

    Reply
  13. coloradobob

     /  August 31, 2017

    The physics doesn’t care

    The age of paid debate is over , the age of costs is here.

    Reply
  14. wili

     /  August 31, 2017

    —Texas officials need to accept climate change

    Texas officials — notably, Gov. Greg Abbott, Rep. Lamar Smith, Sens. Ted Cruz and John Cornyn — need to accept the science and follow it with appropriate policy. Ignoring the science, perpetuating false doubt, is to court future disasters.

    http://www.mysanantonio.com/opinion/thirdandavenuee/article/Texas-officials-need-to-accept-climate-change-12159178.php

    Reply
  15. wili

     /  August 31, 2017

    Are people aware of this effort at crowdsourced info on the developing disaster in Houston and other US cities: https://map.u-flood.com/houston/#12/29.8345/-95.6073

    Reply
  16. coloradobob

     /  August 31, 2017

    You know, with all the brain power here .

    It seems we could come up with some long term answers for the victims of these events,

    It’s a giant pool of experience.
    And the world needs answers

    Reply
  17. eleggua

     /  August 31, 2017

    “See how flood waters caused by Hurricane Harvey have covered low-lying areas ”

    Before

    Reply
  18. eleggua

     /  August 31, 2017

    After

    Reply
  19. eleggua

     /  August 31, 2017

    Climate change isn’t politics; it’s physics.

    ‘EPA says climate scientists trying to ‘politicize’ Texas storm’
    August 29, 2017

    http://www.reuters.com/article/us-storm-harvey-climatechange-idUSKCN1B92V0

    “…“EPA is focused on the safety of those affected by Hurricane Harvey and providing emergency response support – not engaging in attempts to politicize an ongoing tragedy,” said EPA spokeswoman Liz Bowman, responding to a question about comments from the climate scientists. …”

    “…“There is universal agreement” that global warming will boost rainfall during hurricanes because warmer air holds more moisture, increasing the risk of severe floods, said Kerry Emanuel, atmospheric science professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

    “If you look at long-term effects of hurricanes on society, the impacts are more about water than wind,” he said. “Harvey is an example of how vulnerable modern society is to rainstorms as the climate warms.

    It’s solid physics,” he said. …”

    Reply
  20. coloradobob

     /  August 31, 2017

    Reply
  21. wili

     /  August 31, 2017

    Reply
  22. coloradobob

     /  August 31, 2017

    It’s a cheap world , in a cheap time, in the most expensive time we have ever seen.

    Reply
    • Robert in New Orleans

       /  August 31, 2017

      Reply
      • eleggua

         /  August 31, 2017

        ^^^ Yeah, perfect. Blame it on the weather not the real culprit.
        Milli Vanilli were phony, through and through.

        “The group was founded by Frank Farian in 1988 and consisted of Fab Morvan and Rob Pilatus. The group’s debut album Girl You Know It’s True achieved international success and earned them a Grammy Award for Best New Artist on 21 February 1990.
        Milli Vanilli became one of the most popular pop acts in the late 1980s and early 1990s, with millions of records sold.

        Their success quickly turned to infamy when Morvan, Pilatus and their agent Sergio Vendero confessed that Morvan and Pilatus did not sing any of the vocals heard on the record.
        This resulted in the group being stripped of their Grammy Award for Best New Artist”

        Reply
      • Hah! This gave me a good laugh. I think you may have started a meme.

        Reply
  23. Matt

     /  August 31, 2017

    Just found out that an apartment building has collapsed in Mumbai due to torrential rain 2 confirmed dead around 30 trapped inside 😦
    will look for a link to more info…….. and a link to post

    Reply
  24. greenman023

     /  August 31, 2017

    found this interesting animation of global temperature anomalies

    http://www.climatecentral.org/news/history-global-warming-animation-21670

    Reply
  25. Spike

     /  August 31, 2017

    The man made tragedy of conflict in Yemen is now added to by floods. “We haven’t seen rainfall like this in 20 years,” Ali al-Kubati, a resident of al-Maqatira, told Anadolu news agency.

    “Trucks and cars have been swept away by the floodwaters and several people have lost their lives,” he said.

    http://www.aljazeera.com/news/2017/08/floods-kill-dozens-central-southern-yemen-170830134822650.html

    Reply
    • Nigeria too. The Equatorial rainfall is really going nuts. This is a bit of a confirmation of some of the climate science. More precipitation and evaporation. But it’s weighted toward the more extreme events and various regions tend to be hot spots. In addition, we have a bit of a Jet Stream and polar amplification wild card that we need to be aware of.

      Reply
      • Spike

         /  August 31, 2017

        Pakistan too now – in Karachi anyway. The public are going to be shocked when they realise this can’t be reversed.

        Reply
  26. Shawn Redmond

     /  August 31, 2017

    Ha! finally a study model that’s looking at what is actually happening on the ground. Like so many of RS’s posts extolling the virtues of solar this model is a positive view in support of the ongoing struggle against FF b.s.
    http://www.resilience.org/stories/2017-08-29/why-solar-keeps-being-underestimated/

    There are competing ideas on the best technologies to rapidly decarbonise the energy system, as required to avoid dangerous climate change.

    Some scenarios emphasise the role of carbon capture and storage to render coal- and gas-fired power plants more climate-friendly. Others point to nuclear energy and a third group is more optimistic on renewable sources.

    But it’s plausible that even these more optimistic outlooks have greatly underestimated the potential of solar power. In an analysis, just published in Nature Energy, my colleagues and I ask why this has happened and how much solar could contribute to climate mitigation.

    Reply
    • eleggua

       /  August 31, 2017

      ‘Real growth of solar PV capacity (gigawatts, red line) has consistently outperformed projections from the IEA (black lines), the German Advisory Council on Global Change (WGBU, blue line) and even Greenpeace (green lines). Source: Creutzig 2017.’

      Graph

      Reply
      • Bobinspain

         /  September 1, 2017

        An interesting article and I hope ‘on topic’. I was concerned that we would reach a bottle neck wrt the supply of rare earths and I’ve read a number of gloomy articles which seemed to support that.
        I think this is good news:
        ‘Clean Energy and Rare Earths: Why Not to Worry?
        http://thebulletin.org/clean-energy-and-rare-earths-why-not-worry10785

        Reply
        • eleggua

           /  September 2, 2017

          Very interesting and on topic. Robert, wondering if you saw this one, published in the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists?

          “Around 2010, many commentators stridently warned that China’s near-monopoly on supermagnet rare-earth elements could make the growing global shift to electric cars and wind turbines impossible—because their motors and generators, respectively, supposedly required supermagnets and hence rare earths. Some such reports persist even in 2017. But they’re nonsense. Everything that such permanent-magnet rotating machines do can also be done as well or better by two other kinds of motors that have no magnets but instead apply modern control software and power electronics made of silicon, the most abundant solid element on Earth.

          The first kind is the induction motor, invented by Nikola Tesla 130 years ago and used in every Tesla electric car today. The second kind, less well-known despite origins tracing back to 1842, is the switched reluctance (SR) machine, likewise made of just iron and (less) copper, but using a different geometry and operating principle. If well-designed, which many are not, SR motors are simpler than permanent-magnet motors, more rugged (so they’re widely used, ironically, in mining equipment), more easily maintained, and equally light and compact. They can switch in milliseconds between serving as a motor or as a generator, and spinning in either direction. They’re also more flexibly controllable, more heat-tolerant, and cheaper for the same torque and production volume. The only scarce resources associated with such capable SR machines are familiarity, which few motor experts have, and skill in their more-difficult design—especially at the level achieved by the UK firm SR Drives (bought first by the US firm Emerson Electric, then by Japan’s Nidec).

          Both kinds of magnet-free machines can do everything required not only in electric cars but also in wind turbines, functions often claimed to be impossible without tons of neodymium. That some wind turbines and manufacturers use rare-earth permanent-magnet generators does not mean others must. It’s better not to, and the word is spreading….

          Rare earths do merit measured expert attention, as with any special ingredient in important processes and products—cobalt or gallium, indium or phosphorus. But rare earths are very unlikely to shift the world’s strategic balance or create resource crises, as many investment enthusiasts breathlessly claimed in 2010, months before losing their shirts. Just as Saudi Arabia’s rulers are discovering that they cannot control world oil markets, and Russia’s President Putin may be starting to realize that his struggling economy’s hydrocarbons don’t confer the decisive geopolitical advantage he’d hoped, Chinese policy makers have doubtless learned, perhaps better than some of their customers, that rare earths are simply another commodity—unusual, significant, but unable to transcend the realities of economics, innovation, and trade.”

          Amory Lovins
          Physicist and energy expert Amory Lovins is cofounder of and chief scientist at Rocky Mountain Institute, an independent, entrepreneurial, nonprofit think-and-do tank. He has written 31 books and more than 600 papers, advised major firms and governments worldwide, and received 12 honorary doctorates and many international awards. Foreign Policy named him as one of its 100 top global thinkers.

        • Bobinspain

           /  September 2, 2017

          Thanks for your positive feedback eleggua, here and elsewhere. Not sure quite where I am on this page at times, from lack of coordination on my part, silly harmless old fool that I am, but greatly appreciating contact with kindly kindred spirits. May we all do our best. Much love x

        • eleggua

           /  September 6, 2017

          “…a global embrace…”

          You’re welcome, Bob. Thank you. Me, too; glad to be here with you and everyone; super-appreciative of our genuine connections here, more and moreso every moment now. Harkens this bit from an Atlantic magazine piece last week re: Harvey:

          “Our planet has grown a new sensory organ, a diffuse and orbital mycelium of detectors, radio transmissions, and microprocessors. Instantaneous global views are available from anywhere and, together with models run on supercomputers, they give us unprecedented foresight into the immediate future. Our continuous record of seasonally changing landscapes and roiling weather patterns reveal previously hidden patterns that aid disaster response, and the global web of communication satellites insures that this information is available to a large and growing portion of Earth’s inhabitants.”

          ^That sensory organ is an extension of us, of our individual and collective central nervous system. We’re quite literally all in this together and now logically connected across ‘time’ and space. Planets orbiting a sun, spiraling in a solar system; solar system spiraling in a spiral galaxy, bound together in a Local Group, and onward and onward and onward and inward. It is an amazing connection and it’s amazing that we can know it, that we’ve the information available to know and understand it and to expand that knowledge and awareness. Pretty simple stuff, actually, in all of its complexity and beauty. That’s why I do not doubt that ‘we’ will make it through this enormous challenge, as a species and as a self-aware meta-being, Gaia. We ‘know’ better and better and better and we know how to be better and better and better.

          Marshall McLuhan grokked that over 50 years ago.

          “Today, after more than a century of electric technology, we have extended our central nervous system itself in a global embrace, abolishing both space and time as far as our planet is concerned.”

          – Marshall McLuhan, Understanding Media, 1964.

    • eleggua

       /  August 31, 2017

      Here’s the paper referenced in that article.

      ‘The underestimated potential of solar energy to mitigate climate change
      Felix Creutzig, Peter Agoston, Jan Christoph Goldschmidt, Gunnar Luderer, Gregory Nemet & Robert C. Pietzcker
      Nature Energy 2, Article number: 17140 (2017)
      Received:
      07 October 2016
      Accepted:
      24 July 2017
      Published online:
      25 August 2017

      https://www.nature.com/articles/nenergy2017140

      Abstract

      The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s fifth assessment report emphasizes the importance of bioenergy and carbon capture and storage for achieving climate goals, but it does not identify solar energy as a strategically important technology option. That is surprising given the strong growth, large resource, and low environmental footprint of photovoltaics (PV). Here we explore how models have consistently underestimated PV deployment and identify the reasons for underlying bias in models. Our analysis reveals that rapid technological learning and technology-specific policy support were crucial to PV deployment in the past, but that future success will depend on adequate financing instruments and the management of system integration. We propose that with coordinated advances in multiple components of the energy system, PV could supply 30–50% of electricity in competitive markets.

      Reply
      • Abel Adamski

         /  September 1, 2017

        Interestingly on Oil Price (An Energy investment advice organisation) there is a promo quoting massive profits to be made from a small company that has the ground floor on Perovskite Solar “panels”, thin , flexible , simple cheap manufacture, 2.5 EV, efficiency currently 40%. over 20 agents now around the world, with installed commercial facilities etc and returning excellent profits. Being touted as a massive investment comparable to ground floor Standard Oil .

        Mentioning even though a bald faced scheme to to attract paying clients for their paid investment information service, it is showing that investors are looking to Solar especially for profit long term.

        If you watch the video (A real effort) note there is an opportunity, grab it to download a transcript

        The investment money is moving away from fossil fuels, and it is not due to pressure, rather avarice

        Reply
    • Simplicity of design, economies of scale, technological innovation increases efficiency and opens door for breakthroughs. This is the formula for rapid deployment. Solar has all of these. Ironically, now so do batteries.

      Reply
  27. Robert, thanks for attempting to draw attention to rainfall abnormalities outside the USA. I see that most of the comments have quickly reverted to Houston and the Gulf region. The sad truth is that millions who contributed little to the release of carbon are having their lives shredded from the storms and conditions now present.

    This is one of today’s stories from India. Its focus is on the rains in Mumbai, the financial center and largest city of India.
    http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/mumbai/maharashtra-government-bmc-fiddled-while-mumbai-flooded/articleshow/60283787.cms

    I found it interesting for the same human responses familiar to Americans. Complaints of not heeding the lessons of prior storms, of corruption in some of the public works projects now being revealed as flooding results anew.
    Making that personal as to “only thinking of the lessons of the last storms”, we had emergency vehicles go through our area two nights ago – announcing a flash flood watch. I lived through that flood alone at the house, so was most concerned for the myriads of things that would be caught up and washed away. Others here now were less interested in getting more than a few of their possessions out of the yard, or off the ground floor. They didn’t want to do all the other prep until they knew the flood was starting… nor discuss removing things any higher than the waters had reached in 2010. Lesson: Human nature is more universal than many give it credit.

    I’ll close with this chart I created a while back – showing what a Carbon Tax and Dividend would compute to starting in 2016. I hope your audience might consider it as a tool to jump-start conversations on the transition needed.

    Reply
    • This kind of policy would send a real signal. Not just that we are serious about transitioning away from a high carbon emissions society, but that we are also very serious about taking care of those who will be harmed the most by climate change. This would certainly be true within our nation. But of other nations developed similar policies and if international systems redistributed some of the excess to aid organizations, we’d be even more resilient. Hansen has been so, so right to promote it.

      Reply
  28. wili

     /  August 31, 2017

    Finally found some drone footage of what’s happening with the water overtopping the north end of the Addicks Reservoir dam. It seems odd that, at the time it was taken, the water doesn’t even seem to be flowing, just sitting on top of the end of the dam. Thankfully, I see no signs of erosion, but maybe others have better eyes.

    Reply
    • Thanks for this, Wili. So to clairify, the 108 foot height generated uncontrolled releases through the emergency spillway. This height produced water backing up into neighboring communities. The surrounding levee is higher than the emergency spillway by a good margin.

      Reply
  29. eleggua

     /  August 31, 2017

    ‘Harvey Live Updates: In Crosby, Texas, Blasts at a Chemical Plant and More Are Feared’
    AUG. 31, 2017

    “Officials were warily watching a chemical plant in Crosby, Tex., about 30 miles northeast of Houston, on Thursday after a series of small explosions, or “pops,” overnight. The fumes sickened several Harris County Sheriffs deputies, and residents within a 1.5-mile radius have been evacuated….

    More than a dozen Harris County deputies went to the hospital after inhaling fumes when the explosions occurred about 2 a.m. at the Arkema chemical plant in Crosby, about 30 miles northeast of downtown Houston, the Harris County Sheriff’s Office said on Twitter.

    Later, the office tweeted that company officials believed that the smoke inhaled by the deputies was “a nontoxic irritant.”

    A spokesman for the Harris County Fire Marshal’s office said that several “pops” were heard coming from the plant, followed by smoke that rose 30 or 40 feet in the air.

    “It is not anything toxic, it is not anything that we feel is a danger to the community at all,” Sheriff Ed Gonzalez of Harris County said Thursday….

    “We want local residents to be aware that the product is stored in multiple locations on the site, and a threat of additional explosion remains,” Arkema said….”

    Reply
  30. eleggua

     /  August 31, 2017

    Matt Dempsey, a data reporter for the Houston Chronicle, says there’s another one nearby, KMCO, and it’s a “High Harm Potential” list as is the Arkema Plant.

    “[The Harris County fire marshall] said that they don’t expect like a shock wave kind of explosion,” Matt Dempsey, a data reporter for the Houston Chronicle, told Maddow. “That’s in contradiction to the expert said who said we’re sitting on a powder keg type of situation here.”

    “Experts on one side are saying it’s a huge thing, and I have the government officials and the company saying it might not be that big,” Dempsey continued. “It’s hard to tell for sure.”

    Dempsey went on to detail a back-and-forth he’d had with Arkema’s CEO, who refused to make the plant’s inventory public and who hasn’t answered questions about whether the plant has industry standard fail-safes that deplete the stock in case of disasters like Hurricane Harvey.

    “It would have been standard operating procedure for a facility like this to have some sort of compound to quelch the organic peroxide, essentially to make sure the explosion risk, the fire risk was not there,” Dempsey said. “It would eliminate that stock so they wouldn’t have it for product going forward.”

    Dempsey said he’s unsure if Arkema followed that procedure. “I don’t know why they didn’t do that, I haven’t gotten a good answer from Arkema about that at this point,” he continued. “Maybe they weren’t following procedure according to the experts. But I find it troubling that they said they planned for a worst case scenario. and the storm just ripped right through that.”

    Reply
    • Once you get all those volatiles out there in the open, it’s a crap shoot. You’re definitely going to have experts with differing opinions. The issue here is that there is at least some risk. Companies sometimes resist investment in safeguards due to the fact that it adds to costs and many did not imagine that this kind of event was likely (well, it wasn’t anywhere near as likely in the past as it is now). Until you nail down the level of safeguards at the plant, then it’s pretty murky.

      Reply
      • eleggua

         /  September 1, 2017

        Produced and written by Frank Capra for The Bell Laboratory Science Series from AT&T.
        The film was televised on February 12, 1958, with a disappointing audience share and many critical press reviews.

        From the beginning of the project, Capra had insisted that the films would explore the relationship of science and religion. In his autobiography, Capra paraphrased his early comments to a meeting of the scientific advisory board assembled by AT&T and N. W. Ayer, “If I make a science film, I will have to say that science research is just another expression of the Holy Spirit that works in all men. Furthermore, I will say that science, in essence, is just another facet of man’s quest for God.”

        Reply
  31. eleggua

     /  August 31, 2017

    Matt Dempsey, Houston Chronicle

    http://www.houstonchronicle.com/author/matt-dempsey/

    Matt Dempsey is the data reporter for the Houston Chronicle’s Investigations team. He joined the Chronicle in 2014. Matt previously worked for the Arizona Republic and Atlanta Journal-Constitution. His data journalism skills were used in projects involving payday lending, wildfires, state pensions and inequalities in high school sports. His passion for public records frequently leads to disclosure of important data from agencies at all levels of government. Matt has trained journalists at professional conferences and taught graduate and undergraduate students at Arizona State University’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication.

    Matt has received four first-place awards from the Arizona Press Club, including two in 2013, for sports reporting, environmental/science reporting and education reporting. He won first place from the Best of the West for growth/environmental reporting, was an IRE Award finalist in 2010 and received the Valley of the Sun Chapter of SJP First Amendment Award in 2006.

    Reply
  32. eleggua

     /  August 31, 2017

    Chemical Breakdown: Part 1
    Story by Mark Collette and Matt Dempsey

    http://www.houstonchronicle.com/chemical-breakdown/1/

    “Just outside Pearland, theater patrons come and go within 200 feet of a warehouse that stockpiles a pesticide so toxic it seeped into a family’s house in Utah and killed two little girls.

    A metal forging company about a half-mile from Cy-Fair High School stores 27 chemicals, including titanium, a material that blew up at a golf club manufacturer in Los Angeles and leveled a city block.

    And in Crosby, a public sports complex is close to a plant that houses explosive organic peroxides, a class of chemicals used in terror attacks in Paris and Brussels.

    All over America and across greater Houston, capital of the nation’s petrochemical industry, hundreds of chemicals pose serious threats to public safety at facilities that may be unknown to most neighbors and are largely unpoliced by government at all levels, a yearlong Houston Chronicle investigation reveals…..”

    Reply
  33. eleggua

     /  August 31, 2017

    Diane Wilson is an American environmental activist, anti-war activist, and author. In 1989 she was a shrimp boat captain in Calhoun County, Texas, and she saw an Associated Press article saying that the county had the most toxic waste disposal of all counties in America.
    Wilson began a campaign against Formosa Plastics, a Taiwanese chemical company then building a PVC (polyvinyl chloride) facility near her town, with tactics including several hunger strikes and sinking her own boat to draw attention to the matter.
    In 1994 she won “zero discharge” agreements (meaning no liquid effluent discharge into the environment) from Formosa and Alcoa.

    Wilson has also protested at meetings concerning the BP oil spill, as well as protesting in support of victims of the 1984 Bhopal, India, Union Carbide gas leak.

    In 2005 a (10-minute) documentary was made about her, titled Texas Gold.
    It won several awards, including “Best Documentary” at the New York City Short Film Festival.

    Reply
  34. Suzanne

     /  August 31, 2017

    PBS segment last night..on Harvey and other extreme weather events and the role CC plays…

    Reply
  35. Robert in New Orleans

     /  August 31, 2017

    Dedicated to eleggua and Colorado Bob. 😉 In these interesting times do not forget your sense of humor. Remember all things in moderation including moderation.

    Reply
  36. eleggua

     /  August 31, 2017

    https://kpfa.org/

    Robert Scribbler ‘live’ on now! Stream at the above link.

    On Air

    The Visionary Activist Show – A Renaissance of Reverent Ingenuity

    Guiding political*scientific strategy for a Renaissance of Reverent Ingenuity – Caroline hosts Nick Brana, chief catalyst for the Draft Bernie movement & conference (D.C. Sept 8-10)
    and
    welcomes back Rob Fanney (aka Robert Scribbler) among our most trust-worthy climate crisis guides as we consider our effective response to catastrophe.

    Reply
    • eleggua

       /  August 31, 2017

      Robert is there live ‘in studio’ with the host, Caroline Casey right now.

      Reply
      • eleggua

         /  August 31, 2017

        Good stuff re: Bernie as possible independent. Robert questioning that idea promoted by Nick Brana.

        He’s pushing Nick Brana for solid explanations. Good!

        Reply
        • eleggua

           /  August 31, 2017

          I’m not a political guy, either, and Rob is on fire!
          Great! Do it, Rob! Tasking questions re: third party, “criminal Democrats”, etc!
          Spicy, focused and on point. Moving forward, not backward.

          “Is Bernie eager to re-litigate this or move on?”

        • eleggua

           /  August 31, 2017

          Rob is great. Super cogent, focused and blasting away on point. Catch this on archive if you didn’t hear it now.

          I’d rather hear about climate change issues, however this is important toward that end, too.

        • Thanks for the kind words. I will say that the discussion was much more political than I expected.

          Takeaways for me are:

          1. Democratic party is now more progressive than it was in the 90s (Not the New Deal Party, but trending that way).
          2. Saying the Democratic Party is corporate is a false conclusion. See Party platform here: https://www.democrats.org/party-platform
          3. Calls for a third party appear to be pretty disorganized and lack goals. Such a third party would probably harm democrats more than help especially with the present message put forward by Nick. But a vehicle for primarying democrats that drift too far to the right would probably be a positive development.
          4. False labeling (‘criminal’ and ‘corporate’) of the democratic party is harmful to progressive goals.
          5. Bernie Sanders has strongly stood against those falsely promoting these kinds of wedge issues in his name.
          6. All that said, we don’t want another Clinton. We want a stronger leader. Someone who will speak with full throated support of progressive causes.
          7. But, as well, we should be clear that Obama made serious progressive gains that we should be proud of. And that we were able to influence Clinton in a manner that moved her more toward favoring progressive causes. In this respect, we should have more nuanced views and not paint them with the same brush that we do Trump and Republicans.

        • eleggua

           /  September 1, 2017

          You’re welcome. I was glad that you jumped in right away with those excellent questions.

          In all seriousness, Bernie, Warren, whomever the Dems put up would be well served with you advising. Let’s work to make that happen. You really know what you’re talking about with regard to the political arena (too) particularly with regard to climate change issues – i.e. the most important issues.

          You present your point with moderated, firm passion and you don’t sway from the path forward. Great job, Robert.

      • Thanks for helping to set this up.

        Reply
        • eleggua

           /  September 1, 2017

          You’re welcome; glad it worked out with the timing for everyone.

          Had no idea there’d be another guest when making the initial suggestion. That worked out well, especially if Nick ferries your great points back to Bernie’s table.

          Robert, you were extraordinarily impressive.

  37. eleggua

     /  August 31, 2017

    “All we can do now is wait and watch this storm carefully.”

    Capital Weather Gang
    ‘Two new tropical threats are taking shape in the Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic Ocean’
    By Brian McNoldy and Angela Fritz August 31 at 12:18 PM

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/capital-weather-gang/wp/2017/08/31/two-new-tropical-threats-are-taking-shape-in-the-gulf-of-mexico-and-atlantic-ocean/

    “As Harvey moves away from the Gulf Coast, a new storm is brewing in the Atlantic and forecasters are monitoring the potential for yet another storm in the Gulf of Mexico.

    Hurricane Irma is expected to become a formidable cyclone, and its path puts the Caribbean and the Southeast U.S. coast at risk. It’s too soon to predict exactly where it will track once it reaches the Caribbean. But this time of year, history has taught us that these kinds of storms — beasts that form just off the coast of Africa, near the equator — are not to be ignored.

    Irma is forecast to intensify significantly: There’s essentially zero vertical wind shear, very warm water temperatures, humid air and a robust preexisting circulation. In layman’s terms, conditions are ripe. Irma is expected to become the season’s second major hurricane — Category 3 or stronger. Irma should be in the vicinity of the Lesser Antilles in about a week.

    The U.S. coast should be on high alert not just for Irma, but for other storms that could spin up quickly, closer to land.

    Specifically, we’re concerned about a possible storm in the western Gulf of Mexico — near Texas — early next week. It seems likely that something will form, and it could have an impact on the Texas coast or areas farther east, sometime between Wednesday and Friday. It does not appear at this time that it would be strong, but even weak systems can produce torrential rainfall and flooding.

    Here’s how the National Hurricane Center characterized this threat in their Thursday forecast:

    An area of low pressure could form over the southwestern Gulf of Mexico by the weekend. Development, if any, of this system is expected to be slow to occur as the low moves slowly northward. If this system does develop, it could bring additional rainfall to portions of the Texas and Louisiana coasts. However, any rainfall forecast is uncertain at this time range, and it is too soon to determine any specific impacts. Interests in these areas should monitor the progress of this potential system for the next few days.Hurricane Irma — still far out in the Atlantic — will remain safely over the open ocean for the next five or six days, but what people are most interested in is what is to follow. Models lose quite a bit of skill beyond a week, so their long-range output is used to look at trends and probabilities.

    The two leading global models have rather different outcomes through the next 10 days. The ensembles — multiple runs of the same model but with slightly different configurations to simulate realistic uncertainty — have little overlap. This gives forecasters much less confidence in long-range outlooks.

    What the ensembles do tell us: Anyone from Belize to Bermuda and points in between should be monitoring the situation closely. Also, one should be wary of relying on a single model or a single run, no matter how dramatic they may sometimes be.

    Adding the intensity information to the track, you can see an ensemble-based probability of a major hurricane being near a location through the next 10 days. This example from the European model is a recent example of that. Keep in mind that it will evolve over time.

    The atmospheric steering currents that will dictate Irma’s track depend on how strong it is. A stronger “deeper” storm is steered by different layers of the atmosphere than a weak, shallow storm would be. But as is often the case, models don’t even agree on what the exact environmental pattern will be.

    In the maps below, which show a forecast of where Irma could be next Thursday, the hurricane is in different positions and has different intensities. But what’s most important at this time is the huge difference in the colored contours, which represent mid-atmospheric ridges and troughs.

    The European model, left, has a much stronger ridge over Irma, which forces it hundreds of miles farther south than the GFS solution. The GFS forecast will allow Irma to recurve to the north and likely miss land. The European forecast environment will absolutely impact land and possibly the United States.

    All we can do now is wait and watch this storm carefully.”

    Reply
  38. eleggua

     /  August 31, 2017

    Ensemble track probabilities over the next 10 days from
    ECMWF (top) and GFS (bottom). (B. Tang, UAlbany)

    Reply
  39. Vic

     /  September 1, 2017

    Oxfam reports that two thirds of Bangladesh is currently under water.

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-08-31/india-nepal-bangladesh-floods-monsoon-rains/8858858

    Reply
    • wili

       /  September 1, 2017

      That’s just crazy!

      Reply
      • eleggua

         /  September 1, 2017

        Reply
      • eleggua

         /  September 1, 2017

        The Concert for Bangladesh (or Bangla Desh, as the country was originally spelled) was the collective name for two benefit concerts organised by former Beatles lead guitarist George Harrison and Indian sitar master Ravi Shankar.
        The concerts were held at 2:30 and 8:00 pm on Sunday, 1 August 1971, at Madison Square Garden in New York City. The shows were organised to raise international awareness and fund relief efforts for refugees from East Pakistan (now Bangladesh), following the Bangladesh Liberation War-related genocide. The concerts were followed by a bestselling live album, a boxed three-record set, and Apple Films’ concert documentary, which opened in cinemas in the spring of 1972.

        The event was the first-ever benefit concert of such a magnitude and featured a supergroup of performers that included Harrison, fellow ex-Beatle Ringo Starr, Bob Dylan, Eric Clapton, Billy Preston, Leon Russell and the band Badfinger. In addition, Shankar and Ali Akbar Khan – both of whom had ancestral roots in Bangladesh – performed an opening set of Indian classical music. Decades later, Shankar would say of the overwhelming success of the event: “In one day, the whole world knew the name of Bangladesh. It was a fantastic occasion …”

        Reply
      • eleggua

         /  September 1, 2017

        RIngo and George: ‘It Don’t Come Easy’.

        Reply
      • eleggua

         /  September 1, 2017

        Reply
  40. Greg

     /  September 1, 2017

    Irma is going to make headlines:

    Reply
    • Greg

       /  September 1, 2017

      and its track will be influenced by, among other phenomena, typhoon Sanvu

      Reply
      • wili

         /  September 1, 2017

        ? That’s pretty damn far away for one system to influence another. I thought the Fujiwara effect was limited to like a thousand miles or something. What am I missing here?

        Reply
      • eleggua

         /  September 1, 2017

        Michael Ventrice‏ @MJVentrice

        Note: There is a bias correction applied to this forecast data. It could very well be overcooking the model’s forecast intensity.
        4:05 PM – 31 Aug 2017

        Reply
      • eleggua

         /  September 1, 2017

        John‏ @johnwow 4h4 hours ago
        Replying to @MJVentrice

        Notice how this tweet got one retweet while your original got 100x more.

        …………………………………………………………………………………………………….

        John‏ @johnwow 3h3 hours ago

        UPDATE: this has 34 tweets while original has 896 tweets. See what social media news is doing to us?

        Reply
      • eleggua

         /  September 1, 2017

        Reply
    • eleggua

       /  September 1, 2017

      http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/text/refresh/MIATCPAT1+shtml/312031.shtml

      BULLETIN
      Hurricane Irma Advisory Number 7
      NWS National Hurricane Center Miami FL AL112017
      1100 PM AST Thu Aug 31 2017

      …RAPID INTENSIFICATION OF IRMA ENDS FOR NOW…

      DISCUSSION AND 48-HOUR OUTLOOK
      ——————————
      At 1100 PM AST (0300 UTC), the center of Hurricane Irma was located
      near latitude 17.8 North, longitude 35.6 West. Irma is moving toward
      the west-northwest near 12 mph (19 km/h). A turn toward the west
      is expected on Friday, followed by a turn toward the west-southwest
      on Saturday.

      Maximum sustained winds are near 115 mph (185 km/h) with higher
      gusts. Irma is a category 3 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson
      Hurricane Wind Scale. Fluctuations in strength, up or down, are
      possible during the next several days, but Irma is expected to
      remain a powerful hurricane through the weekend.

      Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 15 miles (30 km) from the
      center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 90 miles
      (150 km).

      The estimated minimum central pressure is 967 mb (28.56 inches).

      Reply
    • eleggua

       /  September 1, 2017

      Tropical Weather Outlook
      NWS National Hurricane Center Miami FL
      800 AM EDT Fri Sep 1 2017

      1. A tropical wave located over the far eastern Atlantic Ocean off
      the west coast of Africa is producing disorganized cloudiness and
      showers. Environmental conditions are expected to be conducive for
      development, and this system could become a tropical depression
      after the weekend while it moves westward at 15 mph over the
      tropical Atlantic.
      * Formation chance through 48 hours…low…near 0 percent.
      * Formation chance through 5 days…medium…50 percent.

      Reply
  41. wili

     /  September 1, 2017

    Remember the old anti-drug adds that showed an egg frying and said “this is your brain on drugs”?

    I think this and next week may show much of the world how “this is your planet on 1C global warming”

    Especially if Irma hits a major populated area in North America/US

    Reply
  42. eleggua

     /  September 1, 2017

    Hurricane Harvey Lays Bare Our New Bargain With Nature
    … for better or worse.
    David Grinspoon Aug 30, 2017
    David Grinspoon is a writer and astrobiologist based in Washington, D.C. He is a columnist at Sky & Telescope and the author of Earth in Human Hands: Shaping Our Planet’s Future.

    https://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2017/08/hurricane-technology-anthropocene/538410/

    “As I write this, the disaster of Hurricane Harvey is still unfolding. Buckets of rain are still falling in Houston and the waters are still rising. The flood damage, biblical in proportion, is frightening to behold. Even as the rescue efforts continue, many are wondering, “Is this the new normal for our coastal cities?”

    As Earth’s climate changes we can expect more destructive hurricanes. As sea level and surface temperatures rise, more solar energy is trapped in the atmosphere, revving up the hydrological cycle of evaporation and precipitation, and sometimes manifesting in terrifying storms. Add to this the rapid and sometimes careless development of our urban areas in patterns which are, shall we say, not always strictly motivated by long-term planning for runoff management and neighborhood safety.

    In all these ways this disaster reflects changing circumstances in this new time of enhanced human influence which many are calling the Anthropocene—the geological age of humans. With this title we recognize that we have become a planetary-scale force.

    Some developments of the Anthropocene are cause for celebration. Consider the fleet of Earth-observing satellites that we now take largely for granted. Scientists and historians have not agreed on a start date of the Anthropocene, but one candidate might be the moment in the late 1950s when Earth began launching small metallic pieces of itself back out into the void. The first successful weather satellite, TIROS-1, was launched in 1960 and returned the first television image of Earth from space. Since 1962, we’ve had continuous satellite coverage of Earth’s weather patterns. Our planet had entered a new phase—it had begun to self-monitor.

    Before the 1960s, we had only a vague idea of what a hurricane looked like. Today, even the smallest tropical storm will be noticed and intensely scrutinized, modeled and forecast as soon as, or sometimes even before, it forms. Most of us experience hurricanes as immense magnificent swirls on the map that sweep across the ocean, their menacing arms swiping at our coastlines, their central eyes sometimes making landfall, to devastating effect. On the ground, those in the path experience them as fearsome torrents of wind and rain. Thanks to the quotidian experience of TV weather reports, in little over a generation we’ve internalized and integrated this bizarre Anthropocene abstraction, leaping mentally between grounded experience and orbital views of our weather systems.

    Our planet has grown a new sensory organ, a diffuse and orbital mycelium of detectors, radio transmissions, and microprocessors. Instantaneous global views are available from anywhere and, together with models run on supercomputers, they give us unprecedented foresight into the immediate future. Our continuous record of seasonally changing landscapes and roiling weather patterns reveal previously hidden patterns that aid disaster response, and the global web of communication satellites insures that this information is available to a large and growing portion of Earth’s inhabitants.

    Now we see storms coming. Governments have a chance to shore up resources and defenses, to warn or evacuate. Institutions have a chance to prepare and make contingency plans, and residents have more chance to leave, to stock up, or to fortify.

    Hurricane Harvey is showing us both the benefits and the limits of our ability to predict storms and act on our foresight. A major rainfall event was predicted many days in advance but with cruel timing the storm strengthened just before making landfall and then stalled out, gushing colossal amounts of water over a heavily populated region with poor drainage. Decisions about evacuations will be analyzed and second-guessed for years. The city will sustain considerable damage. Yet imagine how vulnerable a modern city like Houston or New Orleans would be without our satellite eyes and computerized warning systems.

    On September 8, 1900, a Category 4 hurricane slammed into the gulf coast of Texas. Back then, nobody saw it coming. (There were some warnings from Cuba, where the storm had passed through, but these were ignored.) The residents of Galveston were helpless, with no chance to evacuate or prepare. Something like 20 percent of the population was washed away. An estimated 8,000 people perished. It was the deadliest natural disaster in U.S. history. As long as we retain our capacity for vigilant satellite monitoring, we will never suffer that magnitude of loss from another storm. This illustrates an Anthropocene paradox: Our technological interventions both endanger us and come to our rescue. Even as our unwitting alterations to Earth’s carbon and hydrological cycles slowly make storms more damaging, our ability to monitor our planet from space and make reliable short-term forecasts have equipped us enormously to withstand them.

    Humans are possessed, to some degree, with the power of foresight. Yet we so often learn things the hard way, through disaster. In addition to tracking storms, Earth observations also reveal to us a planet with warming temperatures, disappearing glaciers, and declining arctic sea ice.

    As a child I was enthralled by the Apollo astronauts based in Houston, whose exploits inspired me to study climate change on Earth and other planets. Through space-based climate studies my colleagues and I have learned that a stable and comfortable climate is not something to take for granted. We know that we humans must rapidly change our energy supply, or suffer more and more devastating heat waves, droughts, floods and storms. If we take the slow road to our inevitable non-carbon energy future, these changes may also bring wars, famines, and displaced peoples. We need a rapid transformation in our energy systems and our urban-planning paradigms so that Hurricane Harvey does not become an emblematic 21st-century experience.”

    Reply
  43. Vic

     /  September 1, 2017

    If you’re feeling a little inundated by all the extreme weather news of late, then why not take some time out to catch up with long time climate champion Tim Flannery, who thinks we can draw down 5 Gt of carbon per year by dedicating 1% of the world’s oceans to kelp farming. He lays out a plausible case in his latest book ‘Sunlight and Seaweed’.

    There’s a good write up on the concept here.
    https://theconversation.com/how-farming-giant-seaweed-can-feed-fish-and-fix-the-climate-81761

    Reply
    • Vic

       /  September 1, 2017

      I thoroughly recommend this hour long interview with Tim on the subject. Lots of good news here.
      http://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/bigideas/can-seaweed-save-the-planet/8817336

      Here’s an hour long documentary about it recently aired on Australian ABC TV.
      http://iview.abc.net.au/programs/catalyst/SC1602H002S00

      Reply
    • eleggua

       /  September 1, 2017

      ‘How Whales Change Climate’

      “When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the Universe.” – John Muir When whales were at their historic populations, before their numbers were reduced, it seems that whales might have been responsible for removing tens of millions of tonnes of carbon from the atmosphere every year. Whales change the climate. The return of the great whales, if they are allowed to recover, could be seen as a benign form of geo-engineering. It could undo some of the damage we have done, both to the living systems of the sea, and to the atmosphere.

      Narration: George Monbiot

      Reply
  44. Lynn From Ottawa

     /  September 1, 2017

    Climatehalk1 has died suddenly after a fall. A huge loss. Tributes and condolences pouring in on his Twitter page.

    Reply
    • What? I hope this is not true?

      Reply
    • eleggua

       /  September 1, 2017

      Too terribly true. Gutted.

      Tom died suddenly on 8/30 after a fall at home. Tom’s family are together and are coping and getting of support from friends near and far.

      Reply
    • Thank you for giving the news, Lynn. Very sorry about this.

      Reply
  45. Vic

     /  September 1, 2017

    Australia’s winter averaged 1.9C above the 1961-1990 baseline, 0.3C higher than the previous winter record set in 2009.

    “…the influence of climate change increased the likelihood of this winter’s record warmth by at least sixty-fold.”

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-09-01/australia-winter-2017-was-hot-dry-and-a-record/8862856

    Reply
  46. John McCormick

     /  September 1, 2017

    OT:
    From Climate Change:

    Tropical semi-arid regions expanding over temperate latitudes under climate change

    https://rd.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs10584-017-2052-7

    The amount of Earth that is covered in semi-arid dry land could increase by 38% by 2100 if no efforts are made to curb global greenhouse emissions, new research finds. The research also suggests that warm semi-arid land, which is characterised by little annual rainfall and relatively low agricultural potential, could cover a total of 7 to 9% of the Earth’s surface by 2100 under uncurbed greenhouse emissions. “This expansion will essentially take place outside of the tropical belt, showing a poleward migration as large as 11 degrees of latitude in the Northern Hemisphere,” the researchers conclude. Climatic Change

    Reply
  47. Suzanne

     /  September 1, 2017

    Bloomberg has an article “Harvey could reshape how and where Americans build homes”
    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-08-30/harvey-could-reshape-how-and-where-americans-build-their-homes

    Hurricane Harvey has highlighted a climate debate that had mostly stayed out of public view — a debate that’s separate from the battle over greenhouse gas emissions, but more consequential to the lives of many Americans. At the core of that fight is whether the U.S. should respond to the growing threat of extreme weather by changing how and, even where, homes are built.

    Reply
  48. eleggua

     /  September 1, 2017

    ‘Second container of chemicals erupts at flooded Arkema plant in Crosby’
    By Keri Blakinger, Lindsay Ellis, and Matt Dempsey Updated 9:22 am, Friday, September 1, 2017

    http://www.chron.com/news/houston-texas/article/Second-of-chemicals-erupt-at-flooded-Arkema-plant-12166702.php

    “At least one more container of volatile organic peroxides erupted late Thursday at the flooded Arkema plant in Crosby, according to one official.
    “There was no smoke and no fire,” said Harris County Fire Marshal Office spokeswoman Rachel Moreno.

    One local resident reported hearing a popping sound overnight, and officials confirmed the noise came from the 18000 Crosby Eastgate plant swamped under earlier this week by a murky deluge that cut off power.

    “The pops are what everyone is referring to as an explosion,” Moreno said, adding that the sounds lasted for about 15 minutes. “The pops are the containers rupturing.”

    The explosions were the same type as those that erupted into 40-foot flames early Thursday, but this time the decomposition process did not spark a chemical blaze.

    It was not immediately clear how many more containers exploded or whether all the material in the container that exploded were affected.

    Arkema has scheduled a press phone call for 11 a.m. to offer more information on the ongoing situation. “

    Reply
  49. Bobinspain

     /  September 1, 2017

    I have a sense, an intuition, that despite our best endeavours, we’re done .Done for I can’t see us picking ourselves up and out of this inextricable mess quickly enough. Quickly enough to have been the best, brightest and most brilliant, creative force that Humanity could have been ,if it weren’t for greed, cruelty, runaway capitalism. And all the the other dreadful atrocities that we continue to perpetrate. I’m no writer, but how could we have been so unkind to one another?
    I cannot understand how money and pure greed have driven us to the brink of extinction, despite our great intellectual,spiritual and technological advancements.
    The sole source of our woeful decline is MONEY.

    Reply
    • Leland Palmer

       /  September 2, 2017

      Oh, things aren’t that bad – yet.

      I think.

      We could solve this global warming problem using BECCS (Biomass Energy with Carbon Capture and Storage) in addition to a massive emergency shift to renewable energy sources, I truly believe. The CO2 could be disposed of by direct injection into basalt formations, or by using the Icelandic CarbFix scheme that uses carbonated water. Tree planting and land use changes could help, as could individual energy conservation efforts.

      But we’re running out of time.

      The climate system speaks the language of billions of tons of greenhouse gases. We just have to use that language to tell it to settle down. The earth wants to help us do that, carbon sinks still want to sequester carbon.

      There is a viable future out there, full of solar energy, electric vehicles, and decarbonized industrial processes. We can do it, we can even do it and have a great time at the same time. We can restore the biosphere to reasonably good condition, we can damp down the ripple effects of global warming.

      What we can’t do is continue burning fossil fuels. But we can do just about everything else we want to do, if we just give up the damned fossil fuels, and are just a little bit smart about how we go about getting what we want.

      Reply
    • eleggua

       /  September 2, 2017

      “I have a sense, an intuition, that despite our best endeavours, we’re done .”

      RobertScribbler isn’t done. Colorado Bob isn’t done. Hundreds of other contributors here and millions-soon-to-be-billions elsewhere aren’t done. I’m not done. You’re not done. We are not done.

      “Pinch Yourself; Still Kickin’; Endure”

      Reply
      • Bobinspain

         /  September 2, 2017

        True enough. I made the mistake of watching the news again yesterday. The way our politicians and their oligarch masters behave causes me distress at times. Can we turn this all around quickly enough? My only thoughts are that, as brutal as it seems, it will be about brinkmanship. Like a middle-aged executive, who’s abused his health for too long and ignored the advice of his physicians, the good ship ‘Untamed Exponential Economic Growth’ may end up in ITU with some non-fatal but acute systemic collapse. Recovery will be slow and harsh lessons will have to be learned. But it will be about the money. The circulatory system. Unfortunately and very sadly, lives in India, Bangladesh, China, Africa and elsewhere won’t count for much. It’ll be when the financial and industrial centres get hit hard that the wake up call will get noticed. That’s already happening, with Texas. Where’s next? London? 45% of which is below sea level and woefully inadequately protected against sea level rise or storm surges. I suspect you can sense where my train of thought is headed. It will all get worse before it stands any chance of getting better. The only realistic scenario that I see ‘baked in’ is a relatively rapid short-term decline followed by realisation then potential for recovery if certain vital conditions and changes are met.

        Reply
        • eleggua

           /  September 6, 2017

          “The way our politicians and their oligarch masters behave causes me distress at times. ”

          That exactly what they want, to cause you distress, distraction and confusion, to seed doubt and self-doubt. Some wittingly do that; most do it unwittingly.
          The solution to resolution is literally within us, not them.

          Who brushes your teeth? Who ties your shoes? And who washes your feet? If it’s you, well, there’s your hero, there’s your authority, there’s your master and there’s your servant. When you’re brusing your teeth, looking in the mirror, you have no other ‘gods’ before you.

          “Recovery will be slow and harsh lessons will have to be learned.”

          Yes. Once we stop the rat race, time won’t be of the same essence. We won’t be “on the clock”; we’ll be “on point”, leading the way forward.
          Co-operative individuals in an individual co-operative.

          Take care there!

  50. Bobinspain

     /  September 1, 2017

    Ironicallly,, this was the day I was born…

    Reply
    • eleggua

       /  September 2, 2017

      Auspicious!

      ]The Devil’s Chessboard
      Allen Dulles, the CIA, and the Rise of America’s Secret Government’

      by David Talbot (born September 22, 1951), an American progressive journalist, author and media executive. He is the founder, former CEO and editor-in-chief of one of the first web magazines, Salon.

      https://www.harpercollins.com/9780062276162/the-devils-chessboard

      An explosive, headline-making portrait of Allen Dulles, the man who transformed the CIA into the most powerful—and secretive—colossus in Washington, from the founder of Salon.com and author of the New York Times bestseller Brothers.

      America’s greatest untold story: the United States’ rise to world dominance under the guile of Allen Welsh Dulles, the longest-serving director of the CIA. Drawing on revelatory new materials—including newly discovered U.S. government documents, U.S. and European intelligence sources, the personal correspondence and journals of Allen Dulles’s wife and mistress, and exclusive interviews with the children of prominent CIA officials—Talbot reveals the underside of one of America’s most powerful and influential figures.

      Dulles’s decade as the director of the CIA—which he used to further his public and private agendas—were dark times in American politics. Calling himself “the secretary of state of unfriendly countries,” Dulles saw himself as above the elected law, manipulating and subverting American presidents in the pursuit of his personal interests and those of the wealthy elite he counted as his friends and clients—colluding with Nazi-controlled cartels, German war criminals, and Mafiosi in the process. Targeting foreign leaders for assassination and overthrowing nationalist governments not in line with his political aims, Dulles employed those same tactics to further his goals at home, Talbot charges, offering shocking new evidence in the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.

      An exposé of American power that is as disturbing as it is timely, The Devil’s Chessboard is a provocative and gripping story of the rise of the national security state—and the battle for America’s soul.”

      Reply
      • Leland Palmer

         /  September 2, 2017

        You might check out Loftus & Aarons series of books – The Belarus Secret, The Secret War Against the Jews, and Unholy Trinity. They are both lawyers, and their mode of operation was to interview old spies, shielded by attorney client privilege. They also made extensive use of archives and documents, in their investigative reporting.

        Yes, the Oligarchy was busy during those years. Dulles was apparently one of history’s great villains, and was strongly associated with the Rockefeller family. Yes, it seems to be no accident that the Warren Commission inquiring into the Kennedy assassination was packed with Rockefeller men, including Dulles, Gerald Ford, and John J McCloy. It seems to be no accident that Gerald Ford went on to be President, while Nelson Rockefeller was Vice President (and was actually in charge, I think).

        The connection to global warming is that the Rockefeller family still arguably controls ExxonMobil, one of the great climate villains. Also, they may be far richer than they admit, and their penetration into the U.S. economy may be huge. Certainly, their leadership on climate issues has been very bad. I hope that the death of David Rockefeller a couple of years ago changes that, but so far there appears to be very little movement, I think.

        Reply
        • eleggua

           /  September 6, 2017

          Cool beans; will check out that stuff. Thanks for the recommendation.

          btw, Leland, saw you last night in the penultimate episode. Watching the final later today.

      • Bobinspain

         /  September 2, 2017

        I’ll check that out – thank you for your excellent insight. My only problem here is a simple practical issue regarding following up on these discussions. That’s not a complaint, by any means. If someone has taken so much time and trouble to respond, then I’m 100% there with the conversation. However, I’m not quite sure how to navigate through all these highly interesting comments and yet still answer specific important responses and issues. I hope that’s received as well-intentioned, constructive commentary.
        Kindest regards.

        Reply
        • eleggua

           /  September 6, 2017

          You’re welcome; thank you.

          It’s well received.. Doing my best to review older threads and catch up on ongoing conversations therein. If I miss anything, it’s not for lack of interest.

          You can select ‘Notify me of new comments via email’ below the reply box and details area when posting a comment. You only need to click that box once, on one reply on any single article. Each article, click the box on one reply.

          You’ll get an email for each and every comment on that article. It’ll flood your inbox sometimes, however that is a way to keep some track of things in older threads after newer articles are posted. (Maybe you’re already aware of that function.)

  51. Bobinspain

     /  September 2, 2017

    I think this is still on topic. Its about the socioeconomic.political mess we’re all in. You have to go to about 5 minutes in to get the real guts of the message.https://youtu.be/zdMbmdFOvTs

    Reply
    • Leland Palmer

       /  September 2, 2017

      Yes, climate science leadership, and the leadership in general has been atrocious. We can change that too.

      We outnumber them.

      Reply
    • Leland Palmer

       /  September 2, 2017

      I misspoke above. Leadership on avoiding global warming has been atrocious. Climate science and climate scientists have done a pretty good job, IMO.

      Alternately, the current political leadership could just change their minds, and wholeheartedly embrace alternative energy and CO2 removal from the atmosphere. Hansen makes the point that this could actually be good for the economy. Certainly, avoiding as many hurricane Harvey events as possible would seem to avoid huge costs to the economy.

      Reply
  52. Leland Palmer

     /  September 2, 2017

    And on the PBS News hour, David Brooks of the New York Times just blamed Republican climate science denial on Al Gore. And Mark Shields kind of let him get away with it, in his understated way.

    http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/shields-brooks-hurricane-harvey-unity-climate-change-politics/

    “MILES O’BRIEN: It seems we prefer to fund the fire department, rather than buying fire insurance. It’s kind of the way we roll in this country in some ways.

    So, all right, so I got to ask this because it has come into play a lot this week. Is there any chance that there will be some sort of sea change, if you will, in political discussions about climate change, in the wake of this? How many of these storms do we have to go through before politicians come around on this one, David?

    DAVID BROOKS: I would be stunned.

    (LAUGHTER)

    DAVID BROOKS: Climate change, in the way it wasn’t 20 years ago, it’s a total partisan issue now.

    MILES O’BRIEN: Is that because Al Gore ran for…

    (CROSSTALK)

    MILES O’BRIEN: That’s the moment, isn’t it? Yes.

    DAVID BROOKS: I happen to think he had some positive effects with the movement. I think he had a very negative effect.

    You used to have John McCain and a lot of Republicans with climate change legislation.

    MILES O’BRIEN: Right.

    DAVID BROOKS: And once it became a Democratic issue, the Republicans had to go on the other side. And there was perverse effect of what Al Gore did.

    MILES O’BRIEN: What do you think? Any chance of this?

    (CROSSTALK)

    MARK SHIELDS: Denial is more than a river in Egypt.

    (LAUGHTER)

    MARK SHIELDS: I mean, Eddie Bernice Johnson, the Republican — Democratic congresswoman from Texas, pointed out to her Republican colleagues, she said, this is the third once-in-500 storm that we have had in the past three years.

    At some point, you have to say, what’s going on here? Is there something that I’m not considering?

    But I agree with David that they will not — they’re not going to move on it. There’s — certainly, I don’t see the leadership anywhere.

    MILES O’BRIEN: Well, you don’t have to be a math guy to realize that’s not working out very well. Right?”

    Reply
  53. Bobinspain

     /  September 2, 2017

    OK (takes a breath). I have no desire whatsoever to draw attention to myself, so Robert, please take this observation down if you feel that it’s inappropriate.
    The debate on here is incredible and I’d like to point out and applaud you Robert and all the contributors and thank you all for your efforts.
    My only tiny issue relates to responding to comments. It’s quite difficult to find out if/when someone has commented on a post or remark that you’ve made. For me, that’s not an issue of self-importance rather of pure courtesy. If someone has taken the time and trouble to reply or respond, then one should acknowledge, respond and engage.
    This is not a complaint about behaviour by any means, but about how to improve and facilitate all the discussions that are going on. Would it be possible to introduce some sort of system of notifications, for example?
    Anyhow, I hope this is perceived as intended, i.e. constructive. This old fool has probably said enough. Much love.

    Reply
    • Improbable Otherness

       /  September 3, 2017

      Bobinspain, pardon me if you already know some of this but here is what I do. (Note, this is in MS-Windows, any version.) The date that appears to the right of every commentator’s name is actually a “link.” With the cursor pointing at that date, right-click (opens a “mini-menu”) then left-click on “Copy link location.” I can then paste that link into a Notepad file that I keep on my “Desktop.” In addition to keeping track of comments and replies, I use that text file to “track” where I last read on lengthy threads such as those on ASIF. (Note, I have my file arranged with dedicated sections and add “notes” when necessary.) If you’re not using Windows, I’m sure there is a similar method that can be implemented in any flavor of Linux/Unix and would be surprised if it can’t be done on a Mac.
      Additionally, whenever you leave a comment or reply, there is a checkbox below your info to “Notify me…via email.” I haven’t used that option here so can’t say how effective it is in taking you to the exact comment you want to monitor. Hope this helps but I’ll check back here if you (or anyone) has further questions.

      Reply

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