New Evidence Global Warming Fueling Extreme Weather

from Wildlife Promise

Flooding in London, July 2007 (via Flickr's Andwar)

As polluter allies in Congress continue efforts to blindfold the Environmental Protection Agency from the realities of global warming, two new studies are confirming that changes in our climate are leading to stronger storms:

Human emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases helped trigger the increase in extreme rain events seen in North America over the second half of the 20th century, a group of climate scientists reported Wednesday in the journal Nature.

In a second Nature paper, another group reported that human greenhouse gas emissions likely contributed to the horrendous floods that inundated England and Wales in the fall of 2000. Those scientists ran sophisticated climate simulations across a network of tens of thousands of home computers that volunteers loaded with climate-modeling software. [...]

The study found that observed increase in deluges “cannot be explained by natural internal fluctuations of the climate system alone,” said [Environment Canada climate researcher Francis] Zwiers. In other words, only the addition of greenhouse gases to the atmosphere explains why the United States and Canada have experienced a dramatic increase in heavy downpours.

We’ve seen a series of extreme flooding events over the last year in places like Pakistan, Brazil and Australia. Climate scientists say global warming is loading the dice, making it more likely that ordinary storms will turn severe – and that severe storms will turn into disasters. Even the current unrest in the Middle East is being tied in part to climate-related spikes in food prices.

We can’t put off action on climate pollution any longer. Please take a moment right now to ask your member of the U.S. House of Representatives to take a stand against polluters.

To learn more about the connection between global warming and extreme weather, go to NWF.org/ExtremeWeather.