US Senator Sheldon Whitehouse From Rhode Island Provides Erroneous Information To American Public in Global Warming Rant

sen_whitehouse_Capture

Video Credit: Daily Caller/C-SPAN – click for video

By WUWT Regular Just The Facts

First, I’m sure I speak for everyone at WUWT when I say that our hearts go out to all the families in Oklahoma affected by the weather tragedy there today.

In the video above US Senator Sheldon Whitehouse states that:

“When cyclones tear up Oklahoma and hurricanes swamp Alabama and wildfires scorch Texas, you come to us, the rest of the country, for billions of dollars to recover. And the damage that your polluters and deniers are doing doesn’t just hit Oklahoma and Alabama and Texas.”

Read more: Daily Caller

If Senator Sheldon Whitehouse did more reading and less ranting, he might know that Continental US Temperature Lower Troposphere (TLT) – 1979 to Present;

Remote Sensing Systems (RSS) – Microwave Sounding Units (MSU) – Click the pic to view at source

is currently below average.

US Strong to Violent Tornadoes (EF3-EF5) – 1950 to 2012;

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) – National Climatic Data Center (NCDC) – Click the pic to view at source

are below average. US Inflation Adjusted Annual Tornado Trend and Percentile Ranks;

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) – Storm Prediction Center- Click the pic to view at source

are currently below average. US Tornadoes Daily Count and Running Annual Total;

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) – Storm Prediction Center- Click the pic to view at source

are currently well below average.

US Extremes in Landfalling Tropical Systems – 1910 to Present – Annual;

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) – National Climatic Data Center (NCDC) – Click the pic to view at source

are currently below average.

This US Acres Per Wildfire and the Number of Wildfires Per Year graph;

shows that the number of wildfires have decreased, while the acres per fire have increased.

This is an important distinction as the associated article elaborates:

This graph shows the inverse relationship between numbers and sizes of US wildfires over time. Note the greater number and smaller sizes of fires between the creation of Wilderness in 1964 and the beginning of the modern wildfire era in 1987 and 1988 (with Silver Complex and Yellowstone fires of those years), as compared with the smaller number and greater size of recent fires. One factor may be the shift in USFS policy from rapid suppression to “let it burn,” which has allowed for numerous smaller fires – previously extinguished individually — to coalesce into larger fires and singular complexes.Evergreen

For reference;

“Forest managers agree that the current fire risk is primarily a combination of two factors — higher-than-average temperatures and a profusion of fuel, the product of nearly a century of fire suppression policies.”

“Recognizing widespread overgrowth in American forests, in the late 1970s the Forest Service began reintroducing policies of prescribed burning and allowed many smaller, natural fires to burn out on their own, provided they didn’t threaten lives or property. The decision this summer to attack all fires, while not a direct reversal of this policy, does represent a departure from that practice of natural restoration, said Jennifer Jones, a public affairs specialist with the Forest Service. Scientific America

The shift in thinking was formalized in a 1995 statement of federal fire policy, and strengthened in a 2001 revision. The policy recognizes that fire is “an essential ecological process,” and that decades of trying to keep fires from burning have led, ironically, to “larger and more severe” conflagrations because of the buildup of underbrush and other fuel. USA Today

As such, US Forest Fire data is biased by “nearly a century of fire suppression policies” and “the shift in USFS policy from rapid suppression to ‘let it burn,'”, which begin “in the late 1970s”, “was formalized in a 1995 statement of federal fire policy, and strengthened in a 2001 revision.” Furthermore, given that continental US Temperatures are currently below average, it is absurd to blame to recent forest fire activity on Global Warming.

US Senator Sheldon Whitehouse used the tragic weather events in Oklahoma to spout erroneous alarmist Global Warming rhetoric. Mr Sheldon, less ranting, more reading…

Hat Tip to WUWT Reader “007”

=================================================================

Anthony: Unfortunately, there is shameful precedence for this sort of opportunistic political rhetoric, WUWT readers may recall when the Center for American progress blamed southern conservatives voting record for tornadoes:

Never let a good crisis go to waste: tornado deaths blamed on lawmakers opposed to climate legislation

Posted on April 29, 2011

This might be a good time to remind readers of this essay:

The folly of linking tornado outbreaks to “climate change”

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110 thoughts on “US Senator Sheldon Whitehouse From Rhode Island Provides Erroneous Information To American Public in Global Warming Rant

  1. Just left this comment over there:

    Is ignorance bliss? It is where knowledge of climate is concerned. We will initiate this discussion with the assumption (capitulation?) that CO2 is the heathen devil gas it is made out to be. Few can actually provide the answer as to when we live. We live at the 11,716 year old Holocene Epoch. So what? Well, 7 of the last 8 interglacials, of which the Holocene is the most recent, have each lasted about half a precession cycle. The precession cycle ranges from 19,000 to 23,000 years, and we are at the 23,000 year part of that cycle now, making 11,500 exactly half, 11,716 about half.

    To paraphrase the Obama “If you like your present climate, you can keep it”. Meaning without consideration of CO2, your, our, my chances of keeping the present climate are precisely 1 in 8. The other 7 chances are that we are due to fall climatewise into the next roughly 90,000 year long glacial (aka ice age).

    Remembering our assumption, and assuming it was all up to you, what would you do? Strip said climate security blanket from said late Holocene atmosphere (the environmentalist’s correct choice, so as to not interfere with inception of the next ice age)? Or leave it up there, for say, the next 4,000 years or so because ignorance just isn’t your thing?

    Discussing the Late Eemian Aridity Pulse (LEAP) at the end-Eemian:

    “Investigating the processes that led to the end of the last interglacial period is relevant for understanding how our ongoing interglacial will end, which has been a matter of much debate…..

    “The onset of the LEAP occurred within less than two decades, demonstrating the existence of a sharp threshold, which must be near 416 Wm2, which is the 65oN July insolation for 118 kyr BP (ref. 9). This value is only slightly below today’s value of 428 Wm2. Insolation will remain at this level slightly above the inception for the next 4,000 years before it then increases again.”

    Sirocko, et al, 2005, A late Eemian aridity pulse in central Europe during the last glacial inception, nature, vol. 436, 11 August 2005, doi:10.1038/nature03905, pp 833-836

  2. After sheltering in safe, quakeless, laharless, stormless, snowless, weatherless, snakeless, Western Colorado the last 30 odd years, after living for some time in dangerous tornado country, I don’t know how people do it. Risk evaluation in the average person’s life is often bad, believing that car travel is basically safe, airplanes are scarey, children don’t really need immunizations for whooping cough or flu but they are likely to get stranger abducted, The idea that you can be asleep in your bed and a horrendous black howling monster might drop out of the sky at any time and smash your house, or level your child’s school seems over the top to me now. I suppose the odds are low always but I’m not interested in buying farmland in Kansas.

  3. So, Republicans caused Katrina, Sandy, and a monster Oklahoma tornado.

    Got it.

    And, being dropped on your head causes people to be Democrats.

    Got it.

  4. Cynically exploiting a national tragedy while the bodies are still warm. Despicable.

    the fact that he does not even know it was a tornado is laughable and shows how competent he is to lecture everyone on questions of climate .

  5. LAUGH — OUT — LOUD. “Waaake up!” His sign is yelling this because his audience fell asleep from boredom a long time ago. WE are “stuck”!???? (head shake) Just who is stuck on mindlessly repeating meaningless speculation, eh Sheldon?

    His ability to keep a straight face is amazing — must have been a used car salesman before this gig.

    I kept waiting for the “aaand, now, live from New York, iiiit’s Saturday Night Live!”

    [originally posted to reply to 007 on Nenana Ice Breakup thread, 5/20/13]

    ***********************
    “… you can keep [your present climate]…” [W. McClenney above quoting D'oh!bama]

    That punk really wants his ignorant followers to believe that he is God. Oh, he knows he’s not, but he wallows in his own self-satisfaction at the fact that thousands of the Cult of Obama truly belieeeeve he is their Hope. Disgusting.

    **************************
    Thanks, Just the Facts, for all the great factual documentation supplementing your post above.
    ******************************************************************************

    Yeah, wws, “never let a good crisis go to waste” — Rahm Emmanuel. [http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1yeA_kHHLow]

  6. You got it, Code Tech (at least these days, I guess there were some truly principled, thinking, Democrats a looong time ago).

  7. “US Strong to Violent Tornadoes (EF3-EF5) – 1950 to 2012 are below average.”

    I bet they aren’t this year. We’re past the peak in temps now. The downturn in the NH surface temps underlined by hard winters in Alaska and yesterdays 100 record Nenana Ice Classic marks a turn around. This is accompanied by a pickup in tornado count.

    These things tend to bounce up and down each year and 2012 was low. I predict we are in for a bumpy ride this year with activity back to the level is was in the 50s.

    We’re entering a 20 year cooling period.

    Cyclone energy will drop off and tornadoes pick up.

  8. CNN “March 18, 1925 – One of the worst tornado disasters in the United States; 689 people in the tri-state area of Missouri-Illinois-Indiana are killed.

    April 3-10, 1974 – There are 148 tornadoes in 16 states.”

    Yeah kinda neat the way they skip the most active part of the record !

  9. Dumping more CO2 into the atmosphere seems to cause weather quiescense–and there nothing wrong with fewer tornadoes, cyclones, hurricanes, blizzards, and killing frosts.

    Of course, there’s no need for control with that scenario.

  10. I was just in Moore yesterday, got held up in Broken Bow earlier yesterday because a CEO was being cautious and not letting anybody leave the building. Then joking around with several folks in Sand Springs today. It’s really heartbreaking to wonder if people you just met are casualties right afterwards. Too much death the last few days, I’m exhausted. But I think I’ll ask if there’s any emergency supplies ready to be hauled in that I can take. Been there, done that.

  11. They just never miss an opportunity to dance on the graves of small children to further their wretched and misguided agenda do they. Absolutely shameless. This idiot disgusts me and should disgust every American! I hope the good folks of Rhode Island will demonstrate their disgust next time they cast a ballot!

  12. Greg Goodman says: May 20, 2013 at 8:43 pm

    “US Strong to Violent Tornadoes (EF3-EF5) – 1950 to 2012 are below average.”

    “I bet they aren’t this year.”

    “I predict we are in for a bumpy ride this year with activity back to the level is was in the 50s.”

    Not the most reliable source, but according to Wikipedia’s 2013 Tornado page;

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tornadoes_of_2013#Events

    inclusive of today:

    Strength Total
    EF0 – 231
    EF1 – 112
    EF2 – 23
    EF3 – 3
    EF4 – 4
    EF5 – 0

    On this chart;

    I count an average of 53 EF3 – EF5 tornadoes per year, between 1954 – 1959. Given that we are already trending below average this year, if we are to return to the level of 50s, a “bumpy ride” is an understatement.

    The downturn in the NH surface temps underlined by hard winters in Alaska and yesterdays 100 record Nenana Ice Classic marks a turn around. This is accompanied by a pickup in tornado count.

    I don’t disagree with your general logic, i.e. if the Northern Hemisphere cools we theoretically should see more and stronger tornadoes, however there’s a lot more going on than just temperature differentials, i.e.:

    How do tornadoes form? The classic answer–“warm moist Gulf air meets cold Canadian air and dry air from the Rockies”–is a gross oversimplification. Many thunderstorms form under those conditions (near warm fronts, cold fronts and drylines respectively), which never even come close to producing tornadoes. Even when the large-scale environment is extremely favorable for tornadic thunderstorms, as in an SPC “High Risk” outlook, not every thunderstorm spawns a tornado. The truth is that we don’t fully understand. The most destructive and deadly tornadoes occur from supercells–which are rotating thunderstorms with a well-defined radar circulation called a mesocyclone. [Supercells can also produce damaging hail, severe non-tornadic winds, unusually frequent lightning, and flash floods.] Tornado formation is believed to be dictated mainly by things which happen on the storm scale, in and around the mesocyclone. Recent theories and results from the VORTEX program suggest that once a mesocyclone is underway, tornado development is related to the temperature differences across the edge of downdraft air wrapping around the mesocyclone (the occlusion downdraft). Mathematical modeling studies of tornado formation also indicate that it can happen without such temperature patterns; and in fact, very little temperature variation was observed near some of the most destructive tornadoes in history on 3 May 1999. The details behind these theories are given in several of the Scientific References accompanying this FAQ.
    http://www.spc.noaa.gov/faq/tornado/

    I think our understanding of Earth’s climate system is still too rudimentary to make accurate long range forecasts.

  13. I’m pretty good with vitriol, but even I can’t muster enough for this lying, conniving douchebag.

    I just hope that Joel Shore, Izen and Phil dot and the others who should know better hang their heads in shame when they read this abomination.

  14. Dear Congressman Whitehouse:
    I listened today to your speech about Republicans and their unwillingness to prevent tornadoes that kill children in Oklahoma.
    Fact: Tornadoes, hurricanes and wildfires are not a recent phenomenon- they have always happened, even before the invention of the automobile – blaming storms on GHG emissions makes you ridiculous.
    Fact: There have been fewer tornadoes than average so far in 2012-2013. Meteorologist calls this a tornado “drought.” How is this possible with more CO2 in the air?
    Fact: The real consensus is that the Earth has not warmed for about 16 years, because it hasn’t. The climate alarmist cannot explain why their models have been wrong.
    Why do you want to increase unemployment in order to prevent a climate crisis that is not happening? Not everyone wants to give up meat for tofu and carrots, commute to a minimum wage jobs on bicycles and heat and light their homes for only 10 hours a day due energy rationing and rolling energy blackouts. How can you condone the murder of millions of birds by wind turbines?
    It is very hard to believe that you actually believe the stuff you say. I guess it all about politics and personal ambition.
    I suggest you talk to Bjorn Lomborg. Like you, Mr. Lomborg does believe humans are warming the planet. At least he’s honest that this thing does not have to be a crisis and we don’t have to ruin our economy to mitigate the problem. But guys like you who don’t know the first thing about the topic scare me.

    Sincerely,
    Brian Murphy

  15. I feel a strong connection to Rhode Island having served there in the US Navy In the early 70s.
    But in the last 20 years the state has become one of the biggest dumps. My guess is that half the state is on welfare or food stamps. Just the kind of people that vote for idiots like this.

  16. Cooking the weather went out centuries ago; but those who would accuse others of such, continue unabated.

    Those who accuse must be held to pay the price. The Senator accuses the “polluters and deniers” of doing damage. That’s a clear accusation; defamatory at least. If one accepts what the Senator claims as true, then “polluters and deniers” are guilty of involuntary manslaughter.

    The Senator is attempting to silence opposition by linking his opponents to the consequences of natural disasters. The objective is to limit freedom of speech. A similar thing is happening in Germany.

    Citizens must vigorously defend themselves against such politicians. Through the media and directly with civil action against the perpetrator when possible and, in this case, the Senate directly by making a formal complaint against the Senator’s conduct. He lacks any evidence to substantiate his allegations.

    When such allegations are made under “parliamentary privilege”, then the accused must be allowed the right to reply in the same forum.

  17. C-SPAN is like a visit to a sausage factory….
    you don’t really want to know what goes on in there….
    this blowhard needs to stick with solving real problems….
    like GRADE SCHOOL BULLYING….
    and pop-tarts that are chewed into the shape of a PISTOL….

    SAVE US ! ! ! PLEASE ALL POWERFUL CONGRESS, SAVE US ! ! !

  18. How low can a man stoop so low in the name of political gain? At the time of writing this, the lives of 91 people were taken by this tornado and this man – no – coward thinks it is good to take political advantage? What a despicable person and how low will these people go to save their fictitious beliefs.

  19. Many AGW promoters and profiteers have woken up to the fact that the putrescent stain of AGW advocacy is permanent in the age of the Internet. They are now in a panic spiral, desperately trying to find an exit strategy. However Senator Whitehouse’s olfactory sensitivity to caffeinated beverages seems abnormally low. Perhaps even lower than climate sensitivity to CO2.

  20. Gail Combs says:
    May 20, 2013 at 10:38 pm

    Judging by the comments I read I think Whitehouse really stuck his foot in his mouth.
    ______________
    If he comes out here to Oklahoma and says something like that, he’ll get a boot in his @$$.

  21. I can’t decide whether he and those like him are incredibly stupid or incredibly sinister.

    Maybe ‘both’ is the answer.

  22. Man-Made Global Warming Charlatans. That’s what I call them now.
    Something disturbing I observed today on the political front, All the scandal news on all MSM channels was trumped by the mid-west tornadoes, as if those tornadoes never happened before. I think they’re getting ready to sell us on the carbon tax again and cover up other things. I started this thread on Daily Paul to bring attention to the phenomenon.

    To Cover-Up Government Employee Crime, MSM Owners Order Wall to Wall Tornado Coverage

    http://www.dailypaul.com/286090/to-cover-up-government-employee-crime-msm-owners-order-wall-to-wall-tornado-coverage

  23. What caused these tornadoes? Certainly wasn’t us skeptics…..

    Worst US tornadoes since 1900

    18 May 1902 114 deaths in Goliad, Texas
    24 April 1908 143 deaths in Amite, Louisiana and Purvis Mississippi
    23 March 1913 103 deaths in Omaha, Nebraska
    18 March 1925 695 deaths in Missouri, Illinois and Indiana
    5 April 1936 216 deaths in Tupelo, Mississippi
    6 April 1936 203 deaths in Gainesville, Georgia
    9 April 1947 181 deaths in Woodward, Oklahoma
    11 May 1953 114 deaths in Waco, Texas
    8 June 1953 116 deaths in Flint, Michigan
    22 May 2011 158 deaths in Joplin, Missouri.
    Source: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

    Who on earth voted this man into any form of political power?

  24. Justthefacts:
    “http://www.spc.noaa.gov/wcm/ptorngraph-big.png

    I think our understanding of Earth’s climate system is still too rudimentary to make accurate long range forecasts.”

    … or even short term one ;)

    Yes betting on weather events is a dodgy business, I should have avoided making simplistic annual predictions. However, the divide between cooling period and warming periods seems pretty clear cut in the tornado data.

    The warming period is recognised to be linked to the Pacific shift in 1974-75 and that’s the last time there was a strong tornado year.

    If there’s one thing that did not happen during the last 30 years of global warming it is an incease in tornadoes.

    Quite the opposite, it has been a period of notable low activity.

    There was a downward trend that is similar to the inverted surface temperature trend. There is also a lag of about 5 years in the decadal patterns. That merits a closer look but in view of the inevitable false claims of “stronger and more violent storms” I wanted to show genernal relationship is just the opposite.

  25. Here is a plot of lagged tornado count vs surface temperature:

    http://climategrog.wordpress.com/?attachment_id=257

    It shows the strong correlation between (inverted) temperature and tornado count even down to the inter annual level during the post 1975 warming period.

    The lag relation is valid during the previous cooling period thought the level of activity is.

    Now understanding what creates tornadoes and prediciting them is something that is poorly understood but the negative correlation to temperature seems clear.

    Conclusion: global warming causes LESS frequent LESS violent storms.

  26. “CodeTech says:
    May 20, 2013 at 8:26 pm
    And, being dropped on your head causes people to be Democrats. Got it.”
    He’s not a Democrat. He is a Progressive Socialist.

  27. Sadly, Whitehouse’s actions are neither surprising nor unexpected. They are the ghouls of humanity who must feed on the death and misery of others to further their own political agenda. We were warned about this 4 years ago.

  28. He is just like the people who used to proclaim that AIDS is a punishment from God, and he deserves the same treatment in the media. But he won’t get it.

  29. Clashes of warm, moist air and cold, dry air cause tornadoes. It has been this way since before Dorothy and Toto went on their travels. See below (caps mine).

    http://library.thinkquest.org/C003603/english/tornadoes/causesoftornadoes.shtml

    “Tornado conditions are caused when different temperatures and humidity meet to form thunderclouds. In the United States, warm, wet winds from the Gulf of Mexico move northward in spring and summer, MEETING COLDER, DRY CANADIAN WINDS moving southward. The place where these two winds meet is called a dry line. High, dry air coming from the north piles on top of low-moving, moist Gulf air at a height of over 10,000 feet. The warm southern winds try to rise, but the cold northern air blocks them. This clash causes the warm, trapped air to rotate horizontally between the two air masses. At the same time, THE SUN HEATS THE EARTH BELOW warming more air that continues to try and rise. Finally, the rising warm wind becomes strong enough to force itself up through the colder air layer.
    When this occurs, the cold air on top begins to sink, sending the rising warm wind spinning upward. The warm winds rotate faster and faster in a high column. When the updraft is strong, the column can rise to heights of 10 miles or more, twisting at speeds of up to 100 miles an hour. The rotating winds produce strong storm clouds about 70,000 feet high, sometimes spreading 10 miles wide.”

  30. What we don’t know is what effect does wind generator farms make on mixing hot and cold air currents? Did that or will that plays a roll in generating tornadoes?

  31. The reactionary ill-informed tone, as well as the substance, of Sen. Whitehouse encourages the worst sort of provincialism. He would be well advised to study the history of his own state a wee bit more before making further inflammatory and self-embarrassing diatribes.

  32. Why do not Meso-Americans, with doxastic commitment, not build traditional tornado shelters? If Glow-bull Warning causes more worser tornadoes, perhaps they’re claiming Denier status?

  33. There are signs, however, that a degree of sanity in reporting this tragedy has descended over the BBC. In today’s coverage their science reporter, David Shukman, told viewers that the statistics don’t bear out the claims of increasingly violent tornadoes (although he still referred to rising global temperatures). He informed us that the increased damage results from spreading urbanisation which raises the chances of storms hitting populated areas.

  34. Yes, it was a rant, and political opportunism of the vilest sort, but make no mistake; he was simply voicing the basic position now of all Climatists. Facts don’t matter in the slightest to them. Reality and rationality are the enemy to them. They prey on people’s emotions, hoping to instill and fan the flames of hysteria. It is both outrageous and diabolical. It is just one more proof (as if we needed any) that what we are up against is an ideology. It is probably the most destructive and costly ideology mankind has ever faced, based on the biggest lie.

  35. philincalifornia says:
    May 20, 2013 at 9:49 pm

    “I’m pretty good with vitriol, but even I can’t muster enough for this lying, conniving douchebag.”

    I am tempted to use MUCH harsher words for this idiot senator than you Phil. I just cannot comprehend someone so sick and evil that they would use the tragic deaths of children and adults in the Moore, OK tornado to advance their political agenda. But this is the reality of the CAGW movement today…and we KNOW who has “educated” this senator.

    I hope ALL climate scientists and meteorologists will denounce this horrible rhetoric in the strongest of terms…and I’ll be observing to see WHO denounces this and WHO just sits back and, like a coward, says nothing.

  36. Greg Goodman says: May 21, 2013 at 3:23 am

    Now understanding what creates tornadoes and prediciting them is something that is poorly understood but the negative correlation to temperature seems clear.

    Conclusion: global warming causes LESS frequent LESS violent storms.

    Yes, that would appear to be the case over decadal timescales. However, the challenge with predicting any year’s outcome is the natural variability, e.g., what will ENSO do?, i.e. “The Relation of El Niño–Southern Oscillation (ENSO) to Winter Tornado Outbreaks” Cook and Chaefer, 2008:

    Winter tornado activity (January–March) between 1950 and 2003 was analyzed to determine the possible effect of seasonally averaged sea surface temperatures in the equatorial Pacific Ocean, the ENSO phase, on the location and strength of tornado outbreaks in the United States. Tornado activity was gauged through analyses of tornadoes occurring on tornado days (a calendar day featuring six or more tornadoes within the contiguous United States) and strong and violent tornado days (a calendar day featuring five or more tornadoes rated F2 and greater within the contiguous United States). The tornado days were then stratified according to warm (37 tornado days, 14 violent days), cold (51 tornado days, 28 violent days), and neutral (74 tornado days, 44 violent days) winter ENSO phase. It is seen that during winter periods of neutral tropical Pacific sea surface temperatures, there is a tendency for U.S. tornado outbreaks to be stronger and more frequent than they are during winter periods of anomalously warm tropical Pacific sea surface temperatures (El Niño). During winter periods with anomalously cool Pacific sea surface temperatures (La Niña), the frequency and strength of U.S. tornado activity lies between that of the neutral and El Niño phase. ENSO-related shifts in the preferred location of tornado activity are also observed. Historically, during the neutral phase, tornado outbreaks typically occurred from central Oklahoma and Kansas east-ward through the Carolinas. During cold phases, tornado outbreaks have typically occurred in a zone stretching from southeastern Texas northeastward into Illinois, Indiana, and Michigan. During anomalously warm phases activity was mainly limited to the Gulf Coast states, including central Florida. The data are statistically and synoptically analyzed to show that they are not only statistically significant, but also meteorologically reasonable. http://www.spc.noaa.gov/publications/cook/enso-mwr.pdf

    Impacts Of ENSO On United States Tornadic Activity, Mark C. Bove, 1999

    Changes in annual and seasonal tornadic activity during El Niño/Southern Oscillation (ENSO) events are assessed in 2.5° by 2.5° and 1.25° by 1.25° bins from 25° to 50° N and 75° to 110° W (the eastern two-thirds of the United States). Forty-two years (1950-1992) of observed tornado occurrences are classified, using sea surface temperature anomaly data from the equatorial Pacific Ocean, as occurring during El Niño (anomalously warm tropical Pacific waters), La Niña (anomalously cold tropical waters) , or neither (neutral). Statistical distributions of seasonal tornado occurrences are estimated by resampling available data via a ‘bootstrap’ technique.

    The amount of annual and seasonal tornadic activity during an ENSO phase is calculated according to where the tornado touched ground. Tornado occurrences are assumed to be independent random variables with Poisson distributions over an entire year. Mean differences in tornadic activity between extreme ENSO phases and neutral years are examined for statistical significance. This significance is calculated for four different three month spring seasons during an ‘ENSO year’, defined as running from October through the following September.

    The results indicate that El Niño events reduce tornadic activity in the southern plain states, while El Viejo events increase tornadic activity in the Ohio River Valley and Deep South. Results further show that El Niño inhibits the chances of multiple tornado outbreaks, while La Niña facilitates large tornadic outbreaks and produces more devastating tornadoes http://coaps.fsu.edu/papers/impacts_enso_tornadic_activity/

  37. I read Sen. Whitehouse’s comments as I was watching the aftermath of the destruction in Oklahoma City. As a midwesterner, I was almost physically ill over his ignorance and insensitivity. His state got money for non-existant Sandy damage, and he has the nerve to lecture us??

  38. To quote LTG Russel Honore, Senator, “You’re Stuck on STUPID!”:

    “During a press conference in Louisiana, an obnoxious (surprise!)member of the news media tried to pull a fast one on LTG Honore, who had just the right answer for him.”

    .

  39. Tells you sth about the media and politics to have someone serving as Senator stating these populist stupidities. Rhode Island is a poor country in that sense.

  40. Politicians are trained scaremongers/opportunists. Such has been around since the dawn of history, much to our detriment.

  41. Stuart Elliot says May 21, 2013 at 4:36 am

    He is just like the people who used to proclaim that AIDS is a …

    From the floor of the Senate? (Maybe you missed the ‘theater’ in which this took place?)

    Harry Reid (a former Nevada Gaming Commissioner) has REGULARLY taken after other citizens on a personal and political level from the very floor of the Senate!!!!!! (showing a significant lack of CLASS and DECORUM), but that is subject material for discussion on other websites …

    .

  42. There’s a new picture in the dictionary next to the word demagogue to go along with a new political party, the Dema-crats. But the Senator is succeeding contrary to belief in some corners that climate alarmism is waning. Everyone I know is willing to believe that climate change is responsible for every unusual weather event, hot, cold, record change from low to high, any kind of wet event, any kind of dry event, …

    I can point out that every weather event is in some way unique unto itself. News people do this in every category including sports with stories like no two Russian women have ever before in history won first and second place in this long distance race before. Making never befores out of common occurrences is turned into climate change caused this. And people nod and go back to believing that it’s never been exactly this way before, we could all die, and it’s somehow somebody else’s fault.

  43. Soon the great Senator Sheldon Whitehouse will propose the “National Climate Change Tax Act”
    It will tax the generation of carbon dioxide to pay for the damage CAGW does thru fire, tornadoes, and cyclones. A true demagouge if I ever heard one.

  44. Sheldon was not elected Senator for his intelligence, obviously. It was because of his loyalty to the Democrat Party machine that has run RI since 1937. The people elect him because they are traditional Democrats locked into a system of labor union dominance of the State legislature and political patronage connections, not because they think about the issues and see that the current situation hurts more than helps. The majority of RI voters are uninformed and small-minded so Sheldon can spout this nonsense because is secure in the knowledge they will re-elect him. Those few of us who know better and must live in this beleaguered state both weep and laugh at his foolishness when we could do so much better in choosing our Congressional delegation.

  45. What is has always been and will always be.

    “By early evening all the sky to the north had darkened and the spare terrain they trod had turned a neuter gray as far as the eye could see. They grouped in the road at the top of a rise and looked back. The storm front towered above them and the wind was cool on their sweating faces. They slumped bleary-eyed in their saddles and looked at one another. Shrouded in the black thunderheads the distant lightning glowed mutely like welding seen through foundry smoke. As if repairs were under way at some flawed place in the iron dark of the world.”

    Cormac McCarthy, All the Pretty Horses

  46. Methinks Senator Whitehouse would like to President someday, and is acutely aware he represents a state with very few electoral votes.

    But perhaps he might get lucky, and someday he’ll be asked about how it is in the Whitehouse White House.

    Which will make his brain explode.

  47. When I was an intern in college one of the senior engineers chided me about my shoddy work, but said the good news is that I was slow. We can only hope that the senator is slow.

  48. wakeupmaggy says May 20, 2013 at 8:19 pm

    After sheltering in safe, quakeless, laharless, stormless, snowless, weatherless, snakeless, Western Colorado the last 30 odd years, …

    Say there wakeupmaggy, how’s the cosmic ray count doing up there in them hills?

    Atlantic coast Terrestrial Background . . . . 0.16 mSv/yr
    sea level Cosmic Radiation . . . . . . . . . . . 0.26 mSv/yr
    Denver Cosmic Radiation . . . . . . . . . . . . . 0.50 mSv/yr
    Rocky Mountains Terrestrial background . 0.63 mSv/yr

    .

  49. The saddest part is not Senator Whitehouse’s rant. His rant is American Politics 101. The saddest part is the number of people buying into it. Can you name one single politician who lost their job because of their strong stance on AGW?

    We are getting what we asked for, period.

  50. I sent an email to Senator Whitehouse this morning, just going over all the facts presented here at WUWT so often. I kept a polite, factual tone; I expect a polite, meaningless response. One never knows what effect such communication might have. Most changes of mind start with one small nagging doubt.

  51. Re tornadoes:

    Me says: “Conclusion: global warming causes LESS frequent LESS violent storms.”

    Justthefacts says: “Yes, that would appear to be the case over decadal timescales. ”

    Good, I think that is the key point to concentrate on in the face of the inevitable media spin and political profiteering from the current tragedy.

    Trying to jerk people off with fear and emotions in the aftermath of such an event is despicable.

  52. Greg Goodman says:
    May 20, 2013 at 8:18 pm

    ““When cyclones tear up Oklahoma …”
    He clearly does not even know that it was a tornado that hit Oklahoma not a cyclone.

    Your provincialism is showing. Colloquially, in the Plains of the US, the terms cyclone and tornado are used for the same thing. Less so than they used to be, but the usage remains.

  53. That didn’t take long. At bedtime last night I told my wife somebody would try to blame this disaster on Global Warming™. He may have already said this idiocy by the time I was telling my wife.

  54. Doug Huffman saysMay 21, 2013 at 5:23 am

    Why do not Meso-Americans, with doxastic [_Jim, literally: "belief logic", where a certain qualified type of logic is used in developing 'reasoned belief'] commitment, not build traditional tornado shelters? If Glow-bull Warning causes more worser tornadoes, perhaps they’re claiming Denier status?

    Out of practicality many do. Many in the Midwest have access to basements as well.

    There are stories and first hand accounts now being shown on MSM (broadcast) outlets detailing the stories of those who took shelter in their “shelters”.

    On the OTHER hand, we *know* the doxastic commitment of 97% * of warmists extends only so far as other people’s wallets, bank accounts and income statements and certainly *not* their own. Of course, they would deny this, but their actions belie their expressed belief.

    .

    .

    * An admittedly non-researched, W.A.G. figure.

  55. I think someone should sue this idiot for libel. That might bring more attention to the real situation than anything else. Anyone fitting the description (doesn’t believe the propaganda on climate change and involved in an industry that emits CO2) he used should be able to sue him.

  56. I predict that soil moisture in the plains states will drop in the next ten years based on the decline of the Ogallala Aquifer. Basic physics, less moisture = less warmth in the atmosphere. Maybe we can avoid this with some breakthrough desalination technology and replace the lost water with the Gulf of Mexico?

    Published: May 21, 2013 at 7:03 AM
    WASHINGTON, May 21 (UPI) — The depletion of groundwater from one of the largest aquifers in the United States since 2001 was faster than during the entire 20th century, the USGS finds.

    The U.S. Geological Survey reviewed groundwater data from 1900 to 2008 and said the annual rate of depletion was accelerating. The Ogallala Aquifer, which covers more than 170,000 square miles in the middle of the United States, declined rapidly because of the high rate of water use for agricultural, industrial and municipal water needs.

    “The depletion during the last eight years of record [2001-2008] is about 32 percent of the cumulative depletion in this aquifer during the entire 20th century,” the USGS said in a statement.

    The USGS said groundwater depletion has increased steadily since the 1950s but has accelerated more quickly in the last eight years.”

    http://www.upi.com/Business_News/Energy-Resources/2013/05/21/US-groundwater-running-dry/UPI-81191369134227/

  57. Chris4692 says:

    May 21, 2013 at 6:56 am

    Greg Goodman says:
    May 20, 2013 at 8:18 pm

    ““When cyclones tear up Oklahoma …”
    He clearly does not even know that it was a tornado that hit Oklahoma not a cyclone.

    Your provincialism is showing. Colloquially, in the Plains of the US, the terms cyclone and tornado are used for the same thing. Less so than they used to be, but the usage remains.
    – – – – –
    For the record, the good (?) Senator Whitehouse is from Rhode Island, that Northeastern enclave of self-believed omniscience far removed from the Plains of the US.

  58. I’m waiting for the AGW crowd to try and implicate OK Senator Inhofe, the member of Congress who has most boldly stood up against their BS. They will go that low, I’m sure.

  59. Strong wind shear at low levels, I agree that is main ingredient for the big tornadoes. Say like today in Arkansas the low level wind shear is weak. So the rain is coming in buckets but the winds aren’t throwing the buckets.

    http://www.estofex.org/guide/2_3_1.html

    2.3 Tornadoes
    2.3.1. Supercell tornadoes
    Tornadoes that occur with supercell storms are to be considered the most dangerous. They occur under the mesocyclone of the storm that may be detected with Doppler-radar. If the storm is close to the radar, a smaller, more intense circulation may be observed at the location of the tornado, the tornado cyclone or tornado vortex.
    Several environmental characteristics have been associated with the occurrence or of tornadoes. In some cases, answers are missing or incomplete as to why these characteristics are so important. Most important is, naturally, the presence of a supercell storm. Remember that those storms become more likely with increasing wind shear in the 0-6 km layer.
    Secondly, strong tornadoes seem to be favoured by strong low-level wind shear. When the vertical wind shear in the lowest kilometre of the troposphere is around 10 m/s of shear or more, tornadoes are more likely with supercell storms (Brooks and Craven, 2002).
    Thirdly, storm-relative helicity in the lowest kilometre appears to have predictive skill as well (Rasmussen, 2003). Many strong tornadoes in Europe occur in situations of strongly veering winds in the lowest kilometre, indicative of high storm-relative helicity.
    Additionally, the amount of CAPE that is released in proximity to the earth’s surface – say, below 3 km above the surface – is found to have a relation with the occurrence of tornadoes. When much CAPE is converted into upward motion nearby the surface, strong accelerations result that intensify any vorticity present, by stretching the air column. It turns out that many tornadoes in the U.S. occur when around or above 100 J/kg of CAPE is released below 3 km (Davies, 2004). Another parameter that represents the same effect is the altitude of the level of free convection (LFC). If this level, where a parcel becomes warmer than its environment is low, strong upward accelerations and amplification of vertical vorticity can be expected. Statistal relation has been found as well between vey low values of convective inhibition CIN and the occurrence of significant tornadoes.
    Finally, it has been shown that the lifted condensation level (LCL), which is a proxy for the cloud base is important to consider. If the LCL is high, say above 1500 m, the chance of tornadoes drops quite rapidly. The reason behind this is not yet well-understood, but has probably a lot to do with strong evaporative cooling in the storm’s downdrafts, that prevent the cold air to flow up into the storm again – something that usually happens in and near the tornado.

  60. Frank K. says:
    May 21, 2013 at 5:36 am
    philincalifornia says:
    May 20, 2013 at 9:49 pm

    “I’m pretty good with vitriol, but even I can’t muster enough for this lying, conniving douchebag.”

    I am tempted to use MUCH harsher words for this idiot senator than you Phil. I just cannot comprehend someone so sick and evil that they would use the tragic deaths of children and adults in the Moore, OK tornado to advance their political agenda. But this is the reality of the CAGW movement today…and we KNOW who has “educated” this senator.

    I hope ALL climate scientists and meteorologists will denounce this horrible rhetoric in the strongest of terms…and I’ll be observing to see WHO denounces this and WHO just sits back and, like a coward, says nothing.
    ================================

    Thanks, yes, I think that another good litmus test for the beyond vile utterings of this foul specimen of humanity is that even Nick Stokes hasn’t come on here to tell us all how we’re misinterpreting what he said.

  61. Pete says:
    May 21, 2013 at 7:30 am

    For the record, the good (?) Senator Whitehouse is from Rhode Island, that Northeastern enclave of self-believed omniscience far removed from the Plains of the US.

    I noticed that, or it registered, just after I commented. Apparently the usage is more widespread than I thought.

    The larger point is that we should not expect people to apply a scientific meaning to words that were in common usage long before the scientific meaning was applied.

    From the Wizard of Oz:

    From the far north they heard a low wail of the wind, and Uncle Henry and Dorothy could see where the long grass bowed in waves before the coming storm. There now came a sharp whistling in the air from the south, and as they turned their eyes that way they saw ripples in the grass coming from that direction also.

    Suddenly Uncle Henry stood up.
    “There’s a cyclone coming, Em,” he called to his wife. “I’ll go look after the stock.” Then he ran toward the sheds where the cows and horses were kept.
    Aunt Em dropped her work and came to the door. One glance told her of the danger close at hand.
    “Quick, Dorothy!” she screamed. “Run for the cellar!”

  62. Thanks, “Just The Facts,” for writing this. You beat me to the punch, and were more polite than I. I was going to submit the following to Anthony, but think your debunking of Whitehorse was better.

    http://sunriseswansong.wordpress.com/2013/05/21/808/

    It really irks me how Whitehorse acts like “you people” come to Washington for hand outs. I can only surmise he forgets where the money comes from, in the first place. Perhaps this occurs because they no longer have to tax people to get money; they just print it.

  63. You miss the point. ALL politicians have the bloviation gene implanted in them. You don’t have to know what you are talkng about. All you have to do is BELIEVE you know what you are talking about.

  64. Not long ago, former U.S. Representative Todd Akin makes an asinine comment about “legitimate rape” and he is rightly lambasted across every major media outlet and by the general public. But have a public figure or elected official blame extreme weather and resulting casualties on human-kind’s use of fossil fuels…and it just slides right off. Where’s the media outrage? It highlights the news media and general public’s ignorance towards the science and their willingness to “believe”.

  65. Ok, let’s try to escape the ridiculousness of a US Senator who, amazingly, manages to go through political life with the last name of Whitehouse. Ok, I know that’s difficult, but he manages to do so.

    Now my sister, my older sister, has just informed me that I don’t want to poke fun at somebody for their last name. Ok, so I’ll go straight to his thought processes instead. In the Whitehouse’s emotional slobbering he huffs at the Republican’s obstructionism (because, after all, we’re all in this together – whatever that means) while wishfully longing for them to return as “worthy adversaries”.

    Huh? What the hell does he think an adversary does for chrissake? Blow tender love bubbles in their opponent’s face while gently cooing in their ear that they’ll only disagree if it doesn’t hurt any fragile feelings? Or, as those the dainty actions of only “worthy adversaries”? The ones who confront and obstruct are the unworthy ones?

    Years ago, I was pressed into long term babysitting duty by two friends of mine. Their child liked me and I liked him. He loved games, any kind of game. At that time he was between 5 and 8 years old. I made certain that he won every single one of those games. I deliberately lost.

    Don’t expect the same treatment Mr. Whitehouse.

  66. philincalifornia says:
    May 21, 2013 at 8:00 am

    Phil – I doubt we will see ANY trolls here today…But we can ALL see the fruits of their labor in Senator Whitehouse.

    And that includes “weather” sites like “Weather Underground” (named after a violent anti-US fringe group) and “the Weather Channel” (who are proudly displaying John Cook’s 97% survey in their “Science” section)…

  67. Goode ’nuff says May 21, 2013 at 7:41 am

    Strong wind shear at low levels, I agree that is main ingredient for the big tornadoes. Say like today in Arkansas the low level wind shear is weak. So the rain is coming in buckets but the winds aren’t throwing the buckets.

    Don’t forget that big Low on the border between the Dakotas (or the position of the Jet stream that ENABLES lift as well!); with spokes of low pressure ‘energy’ (as the mets say, which is a little bit misleading as applied BUT nonetheless is used that way) and more than occasionally presenting itself (low pressure areas) at the periphery … then you have your CAP, your “Cinh” “Cin” (Capping Inhibition, or inversion) factor, which dominates with nothing being able to form until that cap in the mid levels is broken or eroded by heating of the boundary layer … or a different colder airmass replaces that ‘capping layer – then Katie bar the door!

    Some think that ‘explosive’ breaking of the cap contributes to the formation of these larger, more powerful tornadoes as the conditions for T-storm and supercell cells are ‘held off’ until a very warm, moist boundary layer is capable of providing the rich ‘fuel’ for rapid supercell formation. Think of it as pulling the pin of a gren ade when conditions are most favorable for fast and rapid Cumulonimbus formation!

    WV image for past 5 hrs showing spinning low over Dakotas:

    http://weather.rap.ucar.edu/satellite/displaySat.php?region=ABI&itype=wv&size=large&endDate=20130521&endTime=-1&duration=5

    This image is dynamic and will change with time (present time 10:42 AM CDT)
    .

  68. I was going to post something about politicians dancing on the graves of victims to score political points but then I realized this idiot didn’t even wait for all the bodies to be found let alone the graves to be dug. There really are no standards at all anymore, are there?

  69. Further proof that AGW liberals are living in a separate universe.

    For amusement value, however, you can’t beat their rants.

  70. Raptor says May 21, 2013 at 7:30 am

    I predict that …

    Published: May 21, 2013 at 7:03 AM
    WASHINGTON, May 21 (UPI) — The depletion of groundwater from … U.S. Geological Survey … statement …

    An extrapolation (or prediction) based on an interpretation by a ‘news’ organization from a report written by who-knows-who in the USGS and summarized in a ‘statement’ by the PR dept. in the USGS … is this 2nd, 3rd, or 4th hand predicting (as I’ve lost track)?

    I ask … and would also like to know what study is actually being referred to; after the most recent debacle with Cook (there seem to have been several) what with interpreting ‘studies’ every which way, it would be nice to be able to refer to, cite and see the original USGS paper or study and see the author’s originals words (as opposed to multiple interpretations and re-interpretations by multiple organizations and people) …

    .

  71. We are spending billions/i> of wasted dollars on “climate change”, when for maybe a few hundred thousand dollars Plaza Towers Elementary School near Oklahoma City could have been provided with underground tornado shelters. Where is the outrage against the freakin’ idiots who are not protecting our children in areas known for strong tornado activity? Hopefully when the school is rebuilt, someone with half a brain will come up with the idea.

  72. Democrats who condemn conservatives for opposing “global warming science” really mean, “Damn you for believing different writers & sources than we believe.”

    What science writers and scientific sources should we believe? You pays yer money and you takes yer chances. I like Christopher Booker’s “The Real Global Warming Disaster.” It’s more measured and has more credibility than Senator Whitehead ever will.

    If brute force and bullying propaganda constitute science, then Senator Whitehouse is a brilliant scientist.

  73. Apparently the warmists are still too afraid to show themselves and comment on this post…typical.

    I hope, warmists, that you are happy now – Sheldon Whitehouse is your spokesman…

  74. Just heard on ABC News (US) “Special Report” from Governor Mary Fallin of Oklahoma, bolstered by call from Pres Obama:

    FEMA is here to help.

    We now return you to your regularly-scheduled scandal-distracting programming.

  75. Even for a warmist ecoloon, that was a pretty disgusting comment, apart from being pig ignorant and stupid.

  76. The loony Ecotards crawl out from under their rock and scream at the sky it’s global warming, without a shred of evidence much less some basic research- Pathetic!!!

  77. 1. Chris4692 says:
    May 21, 2013 at 8:01 am
    Pete says:
    May 21, 2013 at 7:30 am
    For the record, the good (?) Senator Whitehouse is from Rhode Island, that Northeastern enclave of self-believed omniscience far removed from the Plains of the US.
    To which Chris replied: I noticed that, or it registered, just after I commented. Apparently the usage is more widespread than I thought.
    Pete notes: AGW proponents rely a lot on the idea of “apparently”.
    Chris continues: The larger point is that we should not expect people to apply a scientific meaning to words that were in common usage long before the scientific meaning was applied.

    Pete notes: Why yes, there are always “larger points” to justify one’s rationalizations.

    Pete concludes: Then cometh the “Wizard of Oz” supported by an “apparent” assumption that the good (?) Senator Whitehouse has memorized its lines as well as has Chris.

    Yagottaluvit.

  78. Raptor says:

    “….Maybe we can avoid this with some breakthrough desalination technology and replace the lost water with the Gulf of Mexico?”

    I’ve been thinking about desalination plants along the Gulf Coast and California for some time now. I believe I remember reading about a company which has created a new desalination filter which they hope will bring down the cost of desalination. It was still in the testing phase the last I heard.

    If ignorant politicians like Sen Whitehouse hadn’t been squandering billions of dollars chasing this bogus CAGW theory over the years, we could use that money to build desalination plants along the Gulf, east and west coasts when areas like the southeast (especially Florida), Texas and California experience droughts and water shortages. Canals or pipelines would need to be created to send the water inland to areas where it would be needed for crop irrigation. Think of the massive crop losses that could be prevented. But nooooo, this makes way too much sense, something there is waaaay to little of in Washington. It is granted that salt water desalination is an energy-intensive and costly process. But isn’t crop loss even worse?

    It’s not just of matter of brains, but also one of priorities. Priorities, priorities, priorities. What should our priorities be in this country?

  79. Newsweek in 1975: Tornado outbreak blamed on global cooling

    Over the past several years, one of the knee-jerk reactions from political and media personalities following natural disasters has been to blame man-made global warming.

    As part of his crusade on the issue, former vice president Al Gore blamed it for Hurricane Katrina in 2006.

    In 2008, then-Democratic Sen. John Kerry went on MSNBC and blamed global warming for a tornado outbreak in the southeastern United States.

    And on Monday as the tornado responsible for the deaths of at least 91 was making its way through Moore, Oklahoma, Rhode Island Democratic Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse went to the Senate floor to condemn his GOP colleagues for not seeing man-made global warming as the cause. And then Sen Barbra Boxer crawls out from under her rock – proving that Climate lunacy is a left of center disease.

    http://dailycaller.com/2013/05/21/newsweek-in-1975-tornado-outbreak-blamed-on-global-cooling/

  80. Pete says:
    May 21, 2013 at 11:08 am

    Pete notes: AGW proponents rely a lot on the idea of “apparently”.

    You think I am a AGW proponent? Whatever makes you think that? My comment was on word usage, and a caution that words in common use do not always match their scientific definitions. Because of that you think I am one side or the other on the AGW issue. That is called jumping to conclusions.

    The Wizard of Oz piece is just an example of word usage: that tornadoes have also been called cyclones for a very long time.

  81. old construction worker says:
    May 21, 2013 at 3:27 am

    “CodeTech says:
    May 20, 2013 at 8:26 pm
    And, being dropped on your head causes people to be Democrats. Got it.”
    He’s not a Democrat. He is a Progressive Socialist.
    ###

    Same difference.

  82. SkepticGoneWild says:
    May 21, 2013 at 9:02 am

    We are spending billions of wasted dollars on “climate change”, when for maybe a few hundred thousand dollars Plaza Towers Elementary School near Oklahoma City could have been provided with underground tornado shelters. Where is the outrage against the freakin’ idiots who are not protecting our children in areas known for strong tornado activity? Hopefully when the school is rebuilt, someone with half a brain will come up with the idea.

    The people of Oklahoma City are capable of evaluating their risks on their own and deciding how to spend their own local funds on their own schools. This tornado was very strong and very unusual. It is possible that the school would have withstood a lesser tornado, and had that capability built in, considering that they have had tornadoes before. It is presumptuous to conclude that the risks had not been examined.

    With the human tendency to overemphasize the most recent event in their memory, that may influence them to build their schools as bunkers, but it’s going a bit far to call those hit with this tragedy “idiots.”

    It is also a false dichotomy to compare billions of dollars spent, on a national level with the funds that the people of Oklahoma City spend on their local level. The people of Oklahoma City do not choose to spend money on climate change instead of schools, they do not have the choice to spend or not spend on climate change. That is imposed on them. They choose only what to spend on their schools, a local need met with their local funds, as they see fit. The rest of us should not impose our evaluations in retrospect on them.

  83. “And the damage that your polluters and deniers are doing doesn’t just hit Oklahoma and Alabama and Texas.”

    So Ok & Tx should just reduce their bad CO2 pollution and just stop pumping & refining their dirty oil and sending it to RI for all the cars and yachts up there. Let’s hear how that would go over.

  84. DesertYote says:
    May 21, 2013 at 11:46 am
    old construction worker says:
    May 21, 2013 at 3:27 am

    “CodeTech says:
    May 20, 2013 at 8:26 pm
    And, being dropped on your head causes people to be Democrats. Got it.”
    He’s not a Democrat. He is a Progressive Socialist.
    ###

    Same difference.
    ==============

    Regressive fake socialist might be more accurate.

    Blaming weather events on 666. That’s so last millennium Whitesnake.

  85. Watching them dig through that elementary school, it’s clear that the walls were concrete reinforced blocks, with rebar. That school probably would have been a safe place for any lesser tornado, certainly safer than the houses around it. It would be wrong to suggest that it was insufficient protection.
    Also, it’s a smaller school than either elementary school I went to (checked it out on Google Earth), there’s no way they could have afforded the kind of protection required to withstand a direct hit by an EF5 tornado. Like many horrible things, it was a terrible combination of circumstances that caused the tragedy, not a lack of planning or other human failings.

  86. CodeTech says:
    May 21, 2013 at 3:39 pm

    Fair enough about the schools protective construction but surely there should be something done about building codes for houses in areas of frequent tornadoes. This town has had 3 majors in 14 yrs. Ditto about about houses of sticks in areas of frequent hurricanes. I visited the old plantation houses around N.Orleans a few years back. Many are falling down because of a century or so of neglect but they haven’t been blown away by two or three centuries of hurricanes. I guess the Three Little Pigs wasted their time if they thought reading it would make people think about preparing for the future..

    This causes me to realize the idea of mitigation for coming disastrous weather from CAGW, or even the stopping of CO2, if it indeed was a menace, just simply wouldn’t be done. Disaster is already here for many folks for a long time. It’s all a waste of words and effort. People build in flood plains, on earthquake faults, hurricane and tornado alleys, and hope for the best and rebuild after a disaster. Maybe a different kind of thinking is needed. Build our houses of straw – they’re cheaper to replace and no need for expensive insurance. The Three Little Pigs may be a more subtle story than I had thought.. .

  87. Gary Pearse says:
    May 21, 2013 at 4:16 pm

    Fair enough about the schools protective construction but surely there should be something done about building codes for houses in areas of frequent tornadoes.

    Uniform Building Codes already address wind speed for design of buildings according to region of the US, including tie downs for mobile homes and houses to foundations.

    However, this was an F5 tornado, as serious as it gets. To resist this event you have to design a building able to withstand debris flying through the air such as automobiles and large trucks. It is impossible enough to resist 2x4s flying through the air like spears at much lower wind velocities.

    At some point all the precautions you can stack onto the cost of housing or other buildings means that people would go from being able to afford a house to withstand a 100 mph wind to not having a house or anywhere else to live. In that case, they would have to huddle and shiver in the smallest of rain events, but the building code would meet the needs of every eventuality.

  88. Chris4692 says:
    May 21, 2013 at 4:39 pm

    Gary Pearse says:
    May 21, 2013 at 4:16 pm

    “However, this was an F5 tornado, as serious as it gets. To resist this event you have to design a building able to withstand debris flying through the air such as automobiles and large trucks. It is impossible enough to resist 2x4s flying through the air like spears at much lower wind velocities”.

    I concede to your excellent point.

  89. CD (@CD153) says:
    May 21, 2013 at 11:12 am
    “I believe I remember reading about a company which has created a new desalination filter
    which they hope will bring down the cost of desalination. It was still in the testing phase the
    last I heard.”

    Lockheed has something in the works I think. There was a story here on WUWT a few months back. They were using advanced reverse osmosis membranes that slashed the energy costs.

    http://www.lockheedmartin.com/us/mst/features/2013/130322-wanted-clean-drinking-water.html

    _Jim says:
    May 21, 2013 at 9:02 am
    I ask … and would also like to know what study is actually being referred to… it would be
    nice to be able to refer to, cite and see the original USGS paper or study and see the
    author’s originals words (as opposed to multiple interpretations and re-interpretations by
    multiple organizations and people)

    Using the word ‘predict’ is generally a poor choice of words so I stand corrected. The USGS report is here: http://pubs.usgs.gov/sir/2013/5079/SIR2013-5079.pdf
    People made fun of Texas Gov. Perry when he held a prayer vigil for rain back in 2011 but there is a 2 billion dollar budget item in the legislature now.

    http://www.twdb.texas.gov/surfacewater/conditions/drought/index.asp

    Water shortages are things you can plan for and Texas fell behind but maybe now they can do better.

  90. Raptor says May 21, 2013 at 6:07 pm

    Water shortages are things you can plan for and Texas fell behind but maybe now they can do better.

    ???

    Where did this, and upon what basis is this statement made? I’m IN Texas and take exception to what may be behind this statement, but rather than make assumptions here I will ask for clarification.

    These last few years have been ‘drought’ years, we’ve had to implement watering restrictions in our area (twice a week) due to other issues, such as Zebra mussel infestation that is restricting the drawing of water from a major reservoir (Lk Texoma) until a pipeline is completed to the water treatment plant (this prevents direct Zebra mussel migration to Lk Lavon which water from Texoma used to be let).

    Here is our ‘water district’ website: https://ntmwd.com/

    Perhaps begin here rather than above (various presentations on plans and current status):

    https://ntmwd.com/ntmwdpresentations.html

    BTW, thanks for the link to the USGS report.

  91. _Jim, not wanting to speak for Raptor but I didn’t read that as a slight on Texas. Here in Alberta we’re also one or two drought seasons away from having a water problem, we just haven’t had that happen yet. Through the late 90s it was getting bad, though, and since the drought broke the region has failed to plan for the next one. Our population has grown a LOT, our infrastructure has not.

    Our water comes from meltwater in the Rockies. The last few seasons have been boom years for winter snowfall, but that’s not a given. Also there is increasing demand for irrigation, and some parts of the region that were not used for farming are being developed. It doesn’t help that people are refusing to allow more water control (ie. dams)

    I agree with Raptor’s last line:

    Water shortages are things you can plan for and Texas fell behind but maybe now they can do better.

    And could easily replace “Texas” with any state or province or region you can name. In the old days, before humans somehow got the impression that we knew everything and had all of nature under control, establishing adequate water, sewage treatment, power, transportation and communication even in the event of shortage were the goal of governments and regional managers. I wonder why these fundamentals have become backburner issues in so many places?

    Heck, in Calgary they’re diverting a significant percentage of infrastructure construction (overpasses, light rail mass transit, sewage treatment plants!) costs to “artistic merit”, where millions are spent casting pictures of fish and mountains and pretty patterns into the concrete.

    I’d rather it just worked, and don’t care what it looks like.

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