Sunday, December 27, 2009

Talkin’ about the weather

Only the most ideological of Luddites would claim that the earth’s climate isn’t changing. Other Luddites may deny that humans have caused the rapid change, but even they have to admit the reality of that change.

For the planet, 2009 was the fifth warmest of the past 130 years. In New Zealand, the year ended the warmest decade ever recorded, including New Zealand’s warmest winter in 150 years.

But New Zealand’s spring was far colder than normal, with October the coldest in six decades. That month also saw record-setting snowstorms in parts of the North Island. The extremes of weather that New Zealand and other places have seen are far more than the “normal variation” the Luddites claim. Instead, they’re an indication of a global climate out of balance. Still, the deniers are able to continue get away with denial precisely because there can be extremes in the other direction.

Some of this year’s weird weather has been documented here on this blog. Most of it hasn’t. That doesn’t mean I can’t see it, though—and I’ve certainly felt it. I'm sure weather is something we’ll all be talking about—a lot.

See also: Heatwave caps year of weird weather (NZ Herald)

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