Forget the Future. Climate Change is Here and Now

Climate is always changing claims the denial industry. You just have to look outside your window everyday and the climate has changed from what it was yesterday. Deniers are willfully confusing weather and climate to diffuse any argument for taking action on climate change. According to NASA,

The difference between weather and climate is a measure of time. Weather is what conditions of the atmosphere are over a short period of time, and climate is how the atmosphere “behaves” over relatively long periods of time.

Forget the Future. Climate Change is Here and Now

You can forget the future. Climate change is here and now. The future has arrived a little earlier than expected. According to Suzanne Goldengerg writing in TheGuardian, our world is already nearly five times as dangerous and disaster prone as it was 30-40 years ago.

Disasters by Decade

Natural disasters- floods, heat waves, droughts, wildfires, storms – are occurring at a rate five times faster than they were in the seventies – 3,496 disasters from 2001-2010 versus 743 from 1971-1980. The evidence clearly points to warming temperatures and climate change as the leading causes of the greater frequency and intensity of natural disasters.

Forget the Future. Climate Change is Here and Now, boomerwarrior.org

Key: Dark blue = floods. Light blue = mass movement wet. Green = storms. Yellow = drought. Magenta = extreme temperature. Orange = Wildfires Photograph WMO

There were 8,835 disasters during 1970-2012. Close to 80 percent were due to storms and flooding.

Extreme Weather and Droughts

Extreme weather events are increasing the number of deaths around the globe. Heat waves in particular are the new killer. During the first decade of this century, extreme heat has become one of the leading causes of deaths caused by natural disasters.

Forget the Future. Climate Change is Here and Now

Key: Dark blue = floods. Light blue = mass movement wet. Green = storms. Yellow = drought. Magenta = extreme temperature. Orange = Wildfires Photograph: /WMO

Of all the global disaster-related deaths, storms were by far the biggest threat to life – about 1.45 million of a total of 1.94 million deaths. This was followed by famine-related deaths caused by severe droughts.

Economic Losses

The economic losses from disasters were more than 5 times higher in 2010 than they were in the seventies. The primary cause for this dramatic increase has been the greater number of severe floods around the globe.

Forget the Future. Climate Change is Here and Now, boomerwarrior.org

Key: Dark blue = floods. Light blue = mass movement wet. Green = storms. Yellow = drought. Magenta = extreme temperature. Orange = Wildfires Photograph WMO

Over the last four decades, the cost of disasters amounted to an astounding total of $2390.7 billion. Storms accounted for 51 percent of those damages. Hurricanes Katrina and Sandy alone were responsible for almost 10 percent of all extreme weather damages.

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Rolly Montpellier, founder of BoomerWarriorRolly Montpellier is the Founder and Managing Editor of BoomerWarrior.Org. He’s also a  Climate Reality leader (Climate Reality Leadership Corps), a blogger, an activist and a Climate Change presenter.
He has been a contributor to the Climate Change Guide, The Canadian, ClimateMama, The Hill Times, World Daily, Georgian Bay News, The Elephant, CounterCurrents, 350Ottawa and MyEarth360.

4 Responses to Forget the Future. Climate Change is Here and Now

  1. Once again Rolly, good data work, alarming. And I would suspect that these numbers will rise, and we’ll know that we’ve been hammered when they start to fall again as you can only kill so many people till there are none but few left.

  2. I fear ours is a crisis driven species, and far too many elected politicians have only one concern : getting elected. Out elected representatives could be expected to offer some education on current issues of the day like the need to cut carbon use but they have only one job in office : Raise enough money for the next election. We are the frog in the slowly warming pot of water. What we need are fearless elected officials who will denounce the deniers on a daily basis and maybe if necessary make fools out of them IN PUBLIC DEBATE. Take them to where Islands are wing washed away in northern Alaska. The deniers of Global Warming must me made fools of in public debate and show them for what they are : SELFISH and sometimes STUPID uneducated FOOLS.

    • Thank you for your response John. I agree with your assessment of politicians. Their mindset is set on “short term” mostly, as you point out, making sure they do what is needed to get re-elected.

      That is why politicians cannot solve the climate crisis until we, the public, exert enough pressure on them to engage in climate dialogue. This is starting to happen. My belief (perhaps my hope) is that climate change will be an election issue in 2016 in the US and in 2015 in Canada. Even politicians who are short-term thinkers for the most part will not be able to ignore climate change; they will need to address it to get elected. Failing to do so will hurt their re-election chances. So they will need to talk about it even if it’s for the wrong reasons.

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