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Why This Matters: As carbon dioxide levels keep going up it is easier and easier to set warmest month records because it stays in the atmosphere for a long time continuing to heat us up. If you are younger than 35, there has not been a month in which global temps were below average in your lifetime. Because of all this heat, the summer is setting up to be a record-breaking Atlantic hurricane season. In fact, one homeland security expert, Retired Lt. Gen. Russel Honoré, who commanded Joint Task Force Katrina, told lawmakers last week that the federal response to the pandemic “is going to challenge FEMA’s ability to deal with our active hurricane season” and “[n]ow is the time for the National Security Council to reorganize…”
What makes this year even more discomforting is that, unlike the prior record-holder in 2016, there has not been an El Niño in the Pacific, which would have pushed the temps higher than otherwise. But things like the worst bleaching event ever in the Great Barrier Reef’s history shows that the carbon is taking its toll on the ocean as well. As The Post explained, “In an indication of how high of a fever the Earth is running, NOAA found that February and March were the warmest two non-El Niño months in NOAA’s temperature database, said Derek Arndt, the head of the climate monitoring division at the National Centers for Environmental Information in Asheville, N.C.”
This year has seen many bad records broken when it comes to climate-driven severe weather. We are now several letters into the Greek alphabet for storm names having reached this point (23 so far) for only the second time since storm names began.
Why This Matters: The number of storms is not just a fun fact — it is devastating for tens of thousands of people.
Hurricane Sally, now a category 2 storm (winds at 110 mph) has slowed and intensified in the last 24 hours, with landfall now shifting to the east (fortunately away from New Orleans), but crawling toward the Eastern Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida Panhandle coastline with its high winds whipping the shore, the storm surge and huge rainfall amounts are expected to last for the next 36 hours.
Why This Matters: As President Trump denies the science, which he literally did today in California, the Gulf Coast gets ready for rainfall totals measured in feet not inches.
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