Gore links Iowa floods and tornadoes to climate change, but makes a basic error on global temperature to evaporation linkage, plus he misses the real reason behind imagined tornado increases.
[Excerpt: In a recent article in the Des Moines Register, Al ] Gore attributed the historic floods that devastated Iowa in June to man-made emissions causing more water to evaporate from oceans, increasing average humidity worldwide. “In 66 of your 99 counties, the flood damage was truly historic.” Gore told the crowd of 1,000 Democratic donors. “No one has ever seen a flood like this.” Gore also blamed climate change for increased tornadoes, including the one that leveled much of Parkersburg earlier this year. “Yes, we’ve always had tornadoes in Iowa and in Tennessee,” he said. “But they’re coming more frequently and they’re stronger.”
UAH satellite derived global temperature data. Click for a larger image
Current value for August 2008 is -0.010°C
According to our current scientific understanding of the water cycle and water vapor on Earth, the average residence time of water molecules in the troposphere (where evaporation and most weather occurs) is about 10 days.
Since the global temperature trend has been a negative slope since 2007, and is currently near the zero anomaly line, and with the short residence time of water vapor in the water cycle, Gore’s claimed “warming” could not be responsible for increased water vapor. If anything, water vapor in the water cycle would be less now.
Gore clearly doesn’t understand basic meteorology, much less climate.
Then there is Gore’s claim of “Yes, we’ve always had tornadoes in Iowa and in Tennessee,” he said. “But they’re coming more frequently and they’re stronger.” Well, the graph below says otherwise.
Graph from NWS/NOAA. Smaller (F1) tornadoes seem to be on the increase, but not larger ones (F2-F5). This is likely due to increased reporting from Doppler Radar, storm chasers, and news gathering. Small tornadoes that once went unnoticed are now often reported, and make the news.
Gore is flat wrong.
1) Climatologist dismisses extreme weather predictions due to man-made warming as ‘complete nonsense’ – By Hydro-climatologist Stewart Franks, an Associate Professor of Environmental Engineering at the University of Newcastle in Australia. (LINK)
2) Another scientist dismisses fearmongers: Midwest Floods and ‘Completely Unjustified’ Climate Change Fear Mongering – June 22, 2008 – By Mike Smith is a certified consulting meteorologist and a Fellow of the American Meteorological Society He is CEO of WeatherData Services, Inc., an AccuWeather Company, based in Wichita.) (LINK)
3) U.S. Climate Change Science Program (CCSP) report shows Hurricanes declining, NO increases in drought, tornadoes, thunderstorms, heat-waves – June 20, 2008 – (LINK)
4) Going Down: Death Rates Due to Extreme Weather Events (LINK)
5) Analysis in peer-reviewed journal finds COLD PERIODS – not warm periods – see INCREASE in floods, droughts, storms, famine – April 24, 2008 – (LINK)
6) Increasing tornadoes or better information gathering? – February 8th, 2008 – (LINK)