The Daily Caller

The Daily Caller
An image provided by NOAA is an Aug. 26, 2011 view of Hurricane Irene made by the GOES-east satellite.  The hurricane is projected to follow a path up the East Coast from North Carolina to Maine and into Canada. (AP Photo/NOAA) An image provided by NOAA is an Aug. 26, 2011 view of Hurricane Irene made by the GOES-east satellite. The hurricane is projected to follow a path up the East Coast from North Carolina to Maine and into Canada. (AP Photo/NOAA)  

Bill McKibben: Global warming to blame for Hurricane Irene

Hurricane Irene has a middle name, according to progressive author and environmentalist Bill McKibben, and it’s “Global Warming.”

The Daily Beast columnist says that because ocean temperatures are “bizarrely high” this year, a hurricane that couldn’t normally maintain such a high level of intensity north of North Carolina will reach Washington, D.C. and New York while still a Category 3 storm. (Irene to pummel weekend sports schedules)

“Waters of at least 26°C extend all the way to southern New Jersey, which will make it easier for Irene to maintain its strength much farther to the north than a hurricane usually can,” said Jeff Masters of Weather Underground. “These warm ocean temperatures will also make Irene a much wetter hurricane than is typical.”

“Every kind of natural system is amped up … thanks to the carbon we’ve poured into the atmosphere,” McKibben claims. This year has seen more billion-dollar weather-related disasters than any other year in U.S. history, he says, and global warming is to blame.

Arctic sea ice is nearing record lows, record floods and droughts have been reported around the world, and we’ve had more hurricanes this year than normal. “This is what climate change looks like in its early stages,” McKibben says.

McKibben’s column concludes with his claim that although Hurricane Irene will be a distraction for environmental activists in the short run, in the long run “[Irene] underlines what the fight is all about.”

Watch:

  • Sam

    Look, 97% of scientists agree that global warming is man-made (http://content.usatoday.com/communities/sciencefair/post/2010/06/scientists-overwhelmingly-believe-in-man-made-climate-change/1).  If you choose to believe that every single one of them is lying in order to make Al Gore rich, that’s your prerogative.

    If you want to believe that environmentalists are lying in a deliberate effort to bring America’s economy to its knees, you can believe that.

    If you want to believe that the polar bear population is alive and well and that that alone is proof there is no such thing as global warming (http://summitcountyvoice.com/2011/08/03/global-warming-polar-bear-lies-refuted/), you can believe that.

    I pay $5/month extra through National Grid to get my energy from 100% renewable energy.  I take public transportation instead of driving and SAVE money (though I realize public transportation doesn’t exist everywhere).  If you want to believe that making a change to renewable energy instead of oil, gas, and coal is prohibitively expensive and would destroy our economy, you can believe that.

    There’s overwhelming evidence from almost every source imaginable that suggests us “ecotards, environtards, idiots, socialists, militants” and whatever else you’ve called me over the past few days are just genuinely concerned with a genuinely concerning problem.  I assure you, I want what’s best for everyone–I’m not trying to hurt you or make you poor by promoting clean, sustainable energy.  But if you want to believe the Hannitys and Limbaughs of the world, you can believe them.

    • robx

      Well see that is really what its all about isnt it. Freedom. You are free to do as you please, and the rest of us have the freedom to do as we please. That of course is the real heart of the matter. You are free to believe Al Gore and his hysteria. But as for the “just genuinely concerned” line. If his intent was to educate instead of control. Then why do you have to “WIN” the conversation? Why is it important to WIN. All you should need to do is convince people right? If it were just about “educating” people about what they are free to do. You could just ignore the evil ignorant flat earther racists and just convince the vast majority of “reasonable” people, to do things like you mentioned, right? The only reason to “win” is to gain enough momentum to “force” changes that everyone must make and…
      when you try to force me to use the light bulbs you chose for me.
      or what shower head I can use. http://www.buildinggreen.com/live/index.cfm/2010/7/7/The-DOE-Showerhead-Rule-Someone-is-all-wet
      or what temperature my thermostat can be set to. http://www.nytimes.com/2008/01/11/us/11control.html
      or what toilet paper to buy http://www.simpleecology.com/eco/soft-tissue-paper.html
      then it ceases to be a choice and becomes tyranny.

      • Sam

        I’m not sure what the difference between “WINNING” a conversation and convincing people is, but as for your other points:

        California does not have unlimited water and so needs to take precautions in order to ensure that it can keep providing water to its citizens.  The thermostat control is to prevent rolling blackouts when there is extreme heat–rolling blackouts means that some people would have no AC in these circumstances and presents a dangerous situation, especially for the elderly.  And no one is telling you what toilet paper to buy–you can buy quadruple ply and waste as much paper as you want–that’ll show the rainforests who’s boss! 

        Additionally, freedom isn’t always about being able to do exactly what you want.  In fact, part of being free having peace of mind knowing that people AREN’T doing certain things.

        Should you be free to bring a gun into an elementary school?
        Should you be free to walk your dog in a park and not clean up after him?
        Should you be free to call in fake bomb threats to a shopping mall?

        Us environmentalists exert considerable effort, not at our convenience, to try to make the world a cleaner and more sustainable place for all of us and our children.  What is it about us that you hate so much?  (And no, we’re not ruining the economy.  As I’ve said in my other comments, a switch to renewable energy, if done gradually over the next 10-20 or so years, is completely doable at virtually no economic cost.)

      • Sam

        I’m not sure what the difference between “WINNING” a conversation and convincing people is, but as for your other points:

        California does not have unlimited water and so needs to take precautions in order to ensure that it can keep providing water to its citizens.  The thermostat control is to prevent rolling blackouts when there is extreme heat–rolling blackouts means that some people would have no AC in these circumstances and presents a dangerous situation, especially for the elderly.  And no one is telling you what toilet paper to buy–you can buy quadruple ply and waste as much paper as you want–that’ll show the rainforests who’s boss! 

        Additionally, freedom isn’t always about being able to do exactly what you want.  In fact, part of being free having peace of mind knowing that people AREN’T doing certain things.

        Should you be free to bring a gun into an elementary school?
        Should you be free to walk your dog in a park and not clean up after him?
        Should you be free to call in fake bomb threats to a shopping mall?

        Us environmentalists exert considerable effort, not at our convenience, to try to make the world a cleaner and more sustainable place for all of us and our children.  What is it about us that you hate so much?  (And no, we’re not ruining the economy.  As I’ve said in my other comments, a switch to renewable energy, if done gradually over the next 10-20 or so years, is completely doable at virtually no economic cost.)

  • Pingback: | Conservative Politics in the Progressive Era

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_KSB2FZ3AEIS7N72KSAPR4THZWY Mandible M

    I saw an interview with Bill Mckibben on Democracy Now! this morning. He talked about how climate change is causing extreme weather and his plans to continue protesting against the Keystone XL pipeline. Here is the link: http://www.democracynow.org/2011/8/29/bill_mckibben_will_hurricane_irene_be