It’s as predictable as the sunrise: summer brings the climate alarmists crawling out of their winter hibernation. They’re a seasonal, migratory lot, the climate alarmists: their squawking flocks bounce backwards and forwards across the equator, following the sun.

It’s in their DNA, after all: godfather of climate alarmism, James Hansen, deliberately scheduled his 1980s congressional testimony for the traditionally hottest days in Washington. And turned off the air-conditioning in the room, just to make sure.

Every time it gets a bit hot in summer, out come the climate alarmists, like a flock of seagulls at a picnic, screeching and fighting for scraps of media attention, and pooing on everything.

Heat waves are the new polar bears, stoking alarm about climate change. Climate scientists addressing this in the media are using misleading and/or inadequate approaches.

The most obvious excrescence of this is the attention-seeking climate alarmists scrambling to grab media headlines.

Climate scientists are writing op-eds and spouting off on twitter, about AGW causing, or at least exacerbating, the heat wave. Scientists in this category are those who spout off on the topic, use heat waves to advocate for their preferred climate policies, without having done any actual work on the topic.

Cue none other than the notorious Michael Mann, who makes Australia’s own Tim Flannery look like a model of scientific decorum and truthfulness.

One argument in the hot air line of reasoning is based on [the claim that] as the average temperatures increase, then the frequency of heat extremes increases also.

However, analysis of historical data belies this simple interpretation[…]

The other piece of the hot air argument relates to a hypothesis that the jet stream is made ‘wavier’ by global warming, an argument made by Michael Mann among others. There is a ton of recent papers debunking this idea, and some recent papers even suggest that high-pressure domes such as occurred during the heat wave will weaken under global warming.

It is intellectually lazy for scientists to spout off on this (or any other topic) without actually having done some work on the topic or at least having read and analyzed recent research on the topic. A convenient, but unjustified, storyline that supports your activism and preferred policies is not helpful.

The other great nonsense is the hysterical claim that historical data shows that we’ve never experienced such extremes of heat before!

It’s garbage, of course.

As shown below, there IS NO INCREASING TREND for more record high temperatures over our region (Oregon, Washington) during the past century. In fact, the past decade (2011-2020) had no all-time records.

Average number of days with temperatures above 99F in OR, WA? Also no trend.

Data shows no overlying trend in heatwaves in the Pacific Northwest of the US. The BFD.

As Christy also points out, even if a record is set, that neither proves nor disproves that Anthropogenic Global Warming (AGW) was the major contributing cause.

Even so, is the unholy screeching over heatwaves even justified? Heatwaves are unpleasant and can cause health problems (especially if green energy policies put air-conditioning costs out of the reach of poorer people). But will global warming lead to a net increase in temperature-related deaths?

Despite the “How dare you?” hyperventilating of Greta Thunberg: no.

While heat kills, cold temperatures kill more than an order of magnitude more people than heat. Pat Michaels has been on this issue for decades, and its not particularly controversial. This recent article in the Guardian is interesting:

Title – “Extreme temperature kills 5 million people a year with heat related deaths rising study finds”

Subtitle – “More people died of cold than heat in past 20 years but climate change is shifting the balance.”

The only conclusion I can draw here is that global warming is associated with fewer temperature related deaths. Which is completely at odds with the impression the Guardian article is trying to make with its alarming headline.

Climate Etc.

In fact, contrary to the alarmist assertions, the data is clear: climate-related deaths have declined dramatically.

As Professor Ian Plimer has said, we must be the first human beings in history afraid of a warm climate.

swimming pool with stainless steel ladder
Photo by Etienne Girardet. The BFD

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Mad Dogs and Climate Alarmists

Lushington D. Brady

Punk rock philosopher. Liberalist contrarian. Grumpy old bastard. I grew up in a generational-Labor-voting family. I kept the faith long after the political left had abandoned it. In last decade or...