Monday, August 16, 2010

"Haha, we'll be able to grow oranges in Minnesota!!!1!"

You know that sort of global warming denialist who, when unable to remain comfortable with outright denialistm, retreats to a position of "Hey, what would be so bad about a slightly warmer planet?"

Russia has long played a reluctant, and sometimes obstructionist, role in global negotiations over limiting climate change, perhaps in part because it expected economic benefits from the warming of its vast Siberian hinterland.

But the extreme heat wave, and accompanying drought and wildfires, in normally cool central Russia seems to be prompting a shift in thinking.

“Everyone is talking about climate change now,” President Dmitri A. Medvedev told the Russian Security Council this month. “Unfortunately, what is happening now in our central regions is evidence of this global climate change, because we have never in our history faced such weather conditions in the past.”

The above from a very good article in the NYT, about picking out the signal of climate change from the noise of weather fluctuations: "In Weather Chaos, a Case for Global Warming." The gist: not every extreme event can, in and of itself, be confidently attributed to anthropogenic global warming, but there is an ever-stronger statistical argument that the increased frequency of such events, plus the lopsidedness of them (twice as many high temperature records set as low, for example), shows that human activity is having a measurable effect on the planet. And generally, not in a good way.



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