The lazy assertion that Hurricane Dorian is caused by climate change 

Posted: September 3, 2019 by oldbrew in alarmism, Critique, waves, wind
Tags: ,

Hurricane Dorian

‘Climate change’ being shorthand for ‘man-made climate change’ of course. Every year has an Atlantic hurricane season, so the simple fact of one occurring proves nothing. But climate propagandists will always cast around for any excuse, however thin, to claim that man is somehow making things worse.

Hurricane Dorian had hardly struck the shores of the Bahamas before Twitter began to fill up with comments willing it to carry on and flatten Donald Trump’s Mar a Lago estate in Florida ‘to teach the climate change denier-in-chief’ a lesson, says Ross Clark @ The Spectator.

Others eviscerated Florida senator and former governor Rick Scott for suggesting on Fox News that ‘we don’t know what the cause is’ of a run of strong hurricanes.

From Al Gore to David Attenborough, footage of hurricanes is used as a staple background for films about climate change, the inference being that the viewer is watching the effects of a dreadful, man-made disaster which would not have occurred had it not been for human-induced climate change.

Dorian is an especially severe storm which has already caused one* reported death and will inevitably leave vast destruction in its trail. [*now five]

But you don’t need to make light of that, nor defend the ignorance of Donald Trump (who has expressed surprise on several occasions that there is such a thing as a category five storm, in spite of the current hurricane measurement system having been in use since 1971), to recognise that Rick Scott is correct.

The science does not support the lazy assertion, made every time we have a hurricane or tropical storm, that we are watching climate change in action and that anyone who says otherwise is an idiot and a denier.

Last month, the Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory (GFDL), part of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, which tracks and studies all storms in the US, published a review of the evidence on this very question: is climate change making hurricanes worse?

Its conclusion was that ‘it is premature to conclude with high confidence that human activity – and particularly greenhouse warming – has already caused a detectable change in Atlantic hurricane activity’. It is well worth reading, not least to compare and contrast with the rather skewed presentation of scientific evidence which appeared in the Guardian a year ago when Hurricane Michael was being blamed on climate change.

What emerges from these documents is that if you want to look for it, you can find enough evidence to give the impression there has been a dramatic rise in hurricane activity over the past century, and infer that man-made climate change is the cause.

For some of this evidence there are obvious objections.

The Guardian piece, for example, uses figures for hurricane damage as a proxy for hurricane activity. It ought to be obvious that the amount of financial damage wrought by a hurricane is a function not just of wind strength and wave height but of the value of property which lies in its path.

Hurricanes are now striking areas which were not populated in the 1950s but are now full of valuable villas and condominiums. Of course they cause more damage.

Continued here.

  1. Phoenix44 says:

    If a majority of published science papers are wrong, and that applies to Climate Science, then a majority of claims made about Climate Change are probably wrong as well. To deny that is to surely deny science? Or is Climate Science the only science that is somehow immune from the problems with published papers?

  2. Gamecock says:

    Because it’s politics, not science. Western Civilization must go! Cos reasons.

    ‘Climate change’ is just a silly sound bite that got traction. They will keep using it til it no longer gets traction. Then they’ll use something else.

  3. oldbrew says:

    How about climate psychosis? 😎

    Psychosis is an abnormal condition of the mind that results in difficulties telling what is real and what is not. Symptoms may include false beliefs and seeing or hearing things that others do not see or hear.

  4. stpaulchuck says:

    rent seekers keeping the sheeple running about bleating, “Save us! Save us!” while the charlatans promise to do so if the sheeple just send in a few more dollars. Rinse. Repeat.

  5. oldbrew says:

    Published 2:40 PM EDT Sep 3, 2019

    MIAMI – Hurricane Dorian technically diminished to Category 2 status Tuesday as it slowly turned to the northwest, but the historic and violent storm was growing in size as it punished the Bahamas and inched toward the U.S.

    The latest forecasts put the hurricane farther off Florida’s east coast than previous projections. Still, forecasters said some coastal areas from Florida to North Carolina could see 4 to 10 inches of rain in coming days. Or worse.

    “We still have hurricane warnings up because it’s just too close to call,” said Ken Graham, director of the National Hurricane Center in Miami. “Any little wiggle, wobble and it could get really close to the coast.”
    . . .
    “The headline for this #Dorian advisory is NOT that the wind speed has slightly decreased,” the Hurricane Center tweeted. “The combined wind, surge, and floods hazards are the same or even worse since the hurricane has become larger.”

  6. oldbrew says:

    Stalling storms: Sandy, Harvey and now Dorian – ran in to existing stationary weather systems.

    So, is climate change making hurricanes slower? It’s too early to say for sure, and the issue is still an area of debate among climate scientists. In the case of Dorian, the violent storm stalled above the Bahamas because, somewhat ironically, the atmosphere was too calm; a clash between high- and low-pressure systems caused the weather pattern to come to a standstill.
    – – –
    Interesting, but no known link to minor trace gases in the atmosphere.

  7. oldbrew says:

    From a branch of NOAA…

    Global Warming and Hurricanes
    An Overview of Current Research Results

    Last Revised: Aug. 15, 2019

    We find that, after adjusting for such an estimated number of missing storms, there remains just a small nominally positive upward trend in tropical storm occurrence from 1878-2006. Statistical tests indicate that this trend is not significantly distinguishable from zero (Figure 2).
    . . .
    In short, the historical Atlantic hurricane frequency record does not provide compelling evidence for a substantial greenhouse warming-induced long-term increase.
    . . .
    Our regional model projects that Atlantic hurricane and tropical storms are substantially reduced in number, for the average 21st century climate change projected by current models, but have higher rainfall rates, particularly near the storm center.

    Emphasis is by the authors.

  8. oldbrew says:

    SEPTEMBER 4, 2019
    Slow-crawling Dorian a new kind of threat

    “The percentage of Atlantic hurricanes that have experienced rapid intensification has tripled since the 1980s, it’s not something that we can explain by natural climate variability”

    Lack of a theory doesn’t mean it can’t be natural. In any case their attempted explanations refer to warmer waters feeding the hurricane, and warmer air which holds more moisture. Neither of these is necessarily non-natural.
    – – –
    The Independent reports the same thing…

    Hurricanes mysteriously moving slower despite getting more powerful, leaving scientists baffled
    Hurricane Dorian is the latest example of a tropical cyclone grinding close to a halt and delivering extreme rainfall
    – – –
    ‘A strong ridge of high pressure that has been forcing Dorian west’

    The stall may be linked to this high pressure system.

  9. oldbrew says:

  10. oldbrew says:

    Dorian now over east coast USA…

    Last Update 25 mins ago
    Tornadoes hit Carolinas as Hurricane Dorian floods Charleston; 200K without power

    A reinvigorated Hurricane Dorian roared toward the Carolinas on Thursday, bringing tropical storm conditions along the South Carolina coast and flooding in Charleston, along with the threat of tornadoes across the region, including northward into North Carolina.

    The National Hurricane Center said as of 9 a.m. that Dorian is a Category 3 storm with maximum sustained winds at 115 mph. Dorian was located about 70 miles south-southeast of Charleston, S.C., and 160 miles south-southwest of Wilmington, N.C., moving north-northeast at 8 mph.

    “Rain bands from Dorian producing tornadoes across northeastern South Carolina and southeastern North Carolina,” the NHC said.