Salon: Climate Change and Capitalism Causing Supply Chain Disruptions

Guest essay by Eric Worrall

According to History graduate Matthew Rosa, climate change and capitalism are behind the supply chain disruption the USA is currently experiencing.

Climate change is driving supply chain shortages — and your supermarkets are not prepared

The problem with our supply chains can be explained by climate change — and America is in no way ready for it



Before the days of antiseptic supermarkets, with their fluorescent lights and linoleum floors, food was sold in very different types of markets, most of which would not pass muster to a modern health inspector. Take Medieval Europe: Even the sturdiest contemporary carnivore might have felt a bit queasy at the sight of animals being slaughtered, which would happen not far from where the cuts of meat were ultimately sold (if they were cut up at all). Farmers would wheel in their produce from plots of land within walking distance of their homes, or at most a short horse ride away. By contrast, citizens of the early 21st century are used to their food coming to them in the same way as their cars, their clothes and their household appliances — through sprawling international supply chains.

Unfortunately, just like a chain is only as strong as its weakest leak, a supply chain can become inefficient or fall apart if there is even a slight hiccup. This is especially so when the supply chains overlap in so many ways that it’s more of a “supply labyrinth” or “supply knot” than a supply chain.

When it comes to food-based supply chains, climate change is another major culprit, albeit one that is very difficult to quantify. Unlike other economic sectors, where there can disruptions from the demand end as well as the supply end, people never decide they have had enough of food. (They may, of course, alter their dietary preferences.) When there are supply chain issues, it is usually because some unwanted outside variable has made it more difficult for those who produce food to do their job. Climate change causes many of those unwanted outside variables: Warming temperatures harmed American corn yields in 2010 and 2012, as well as $220 million in losses for Michigan cherries in 2012. As weather continues to warm, crops that depend on precise temperatures at specific times will be thrown off kilter or possibly wiped out. While moderate warming and carbon dioxide increases will help some plants grow faster, even they will ultimately be harmed by the droughts and floods that will harm so many other crops.

“A major drought in California or freezing temperatures in Florida can throw a wrench into this market,” Dr. Ariel Ortiz-Bobea, an associate professor of applied economics at Cornell University, told Salon in August. “Those events can drastically reduce the supply of oranges from those regions. While oranges can be produced in other areas (e.g. Brazil), acquiring them is much more expensive especially if the supply chains are not already established and prepared to larger volumes.”

In addition to climate change, there is also the built-in structural problem of capitalism itself: Concentration of power, and the fact that supply chain disruptions also exist because the global economic system is built around what individual powerful corporations have decided will maximize their profits. A system that prioritizes profitability over everything else will make choices about who gets what first based on how they can make the most money, not on who needs it most or what will be most efficient. That means that supply chain disruptions, though not ideal, are also not viewed as a company’s absolute worst case scenario.

Read more:–and-your-supermarkets-are-not-prepared/

Climate change has nothing to do with the USA’s supply chain problems. The problem is very obviously that something has gone very wrong with the offloading and land transport of goods. The hint is that there are goods waiting to be offloaded and shipped. If climate change was disrupting production, there would be nothing to ship and offload.

As for the problems caused by Capitalism, I prefer those problems to the problems faced by say people in Venezuela.

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Zig Zag Wanderer
December 20, 2021 2:04 pm

Climate change is driving supply chain shortages — and your supermarkets are not prepared

Is there anything that the Magic Molecule ™ can’t do?

Last edited 1 year ago by Zig Zag Wanderer
Gregory Woods
Reply to  Zig Zag Wanderer
December 20, 2021 2:09 pm

It can’t provide Common Sense….

Reply to  Gregory Woods
December 20, 2021 4:56 pm

Wish I could upvote more than once, Gregory… a LOT more.

Bryan A
Reply to  H.R.
December 20, 2021 9:06 pm

Of course the supply chain disruptions have absolutely NOTHING to do with China and COVID19

Reply to  Bryan A
December 21, 2021 9:27 am

Actually MANDATES have had a large effect, but the China virus allowed the authoritarians the excuse for locking down.

Soon we will be seeing them requiring travel papers to move about the country.

The question is, will the SCOTUS stop it?

In MANY countries PAPERS are already required, much like in Europe during WWII under German rule. Don’t forget, the Nazis were a SOCIALIST party.

SCOTUS=Supreme Court of the United States

Joseph Zorzin
Reply to  Zig Zag Wanderer
December 20, 2021 2:12 pm

it’s the Great Satan

Reply to  Zig Zag Wanderer
December 20, 2021 3:35 pm

Another NY Slimes article sez scientists predict melting problems in Antarctica…they want to melt 97% ice everywhere…those 97% scientists.

Last edited 1 year ago by antigtiff
Reply to  Zig Zag Wanderer
December 20, 2021 6:04 pm

Clearly it sends leftards over the edge … I offer Griff up as living proof

Last edited 1 year ago by LdB
Reply to  Zig Zag Wanderer
December 20, 2021 6:16 pm

The gaud molecule. That said, go green, emit.

Zig Zag Wanderer
December 20, 2021 2:12 pm

A system that prioritizes profitability over everything else will make choices about who gets what first based on how they can make the most money, not on who needs it most or what will be most efficient. That means that supply chain disruptions, though not ideal, are also not viewed as a company’s absolute worst case scenario.

So basically the Free Market economy is all wrong. We must not do what makes a profit, we should let some nebulous ‘authorities’ tell us what we must do, and where and when we must do it. Gotcha!


We could let the Free Market work. If someone isn’t getting their soy latte on time, I’m sure that some enterprising entrepreneurs will work out how to make a buck or two out of them.

Reply to  Zig Zag Wanderer
December 20, 2021 2:19 pm

Yep. The Free Market is the worst system there is … except for all the others that have been tried.

Reply to  commieBob
December 20, 2021 2:37 pm

The sad thing is that these guys are convinced that the US is a laissez faire free market economy.

Reply to  commieBob
December 20, 2021 4:13 pm

The Free Market = Human nature. Anything else is doomed to failure as it is essentially inhuman

Reply to  Kenji
December 20, 2021 5:04 pm

Hey! That’s really good, Kenji. 👍👍

Reply to  Kenji
December 20, 2021 5:26 pm

Markets are like gravity. You can divert water with dams and levees and canals, you can even pump it uphill at times, but gravity is always at work. You can distort markets, subsidize and ban and divert distribution, but markets are always at work.

Reply to  Felix
December 20, 2021 5:33 pm

Or that old saw – “there is no such thing as gravity – the whole world sucks”. 😉

john harmsworth
Reply to  Kenji
December 21, 2021 8:22 am

Agreed! Socialism/Communism is inherently coercive. It requires humans to act against their best interests consistently. Eventually, usually pretty quickly, it has to enforce that and ever more aggressively.

Reply to  Zig Zag Wanderer
December 20, 2021 2:36 pm

Once again, the socialists who have never actually studied anything about the market and how it works, are convinced that if only they were in charge, they could make the world super efficient.

Even a quick glance at any socialist/communist state would show how delusional that self deceit is.

In a free market, most efficient IS most profitable.

john harmsworth
Reply to  MarkW
December 21, 2021 8:23 am

The same people who produce no product or service that anybody would want. Marx himself was a grifter.

Reply to  Zig Zag Wanderer
December 20, 2021 2:52 pm

This History major is right … climate change … the irrational, hysteric, reaction to climate change … is causing the backlog at CA ports. The CA Air Quality Board has demanded that “old” diesel trucks cannot drive in CA. Hence … the number of “approved” trucks has been dramatically reduced. Hence … supply chain problems “caused” by climate change. The irrational, hysterical, reaction to climate change by California’s supermajority leftist Democrat government … has caused the supply chain problems

Tim Gorman
Reply to  Kenji
December 20, 2021 2:54 pm

Don’t forget that while *more* shipping containers may be unloading today they are causing a backup of unloaded containers that can’t get into the ports to be reloaded onto ships and returned to ports of origin. Thus the supply chains will continue to be a problem for a *long* time!

Reply to  Zig Zag Wanderer
December 20, 2021 4:44 pm

The Socialists try to position profit as greed to cover up the real greed which is from those who covet the benefit of other peoples wealth. To any business, the lack of profit is an existential threat, so the profit motive is more about survival.

Jim Veenbaas
Reply to  Zig Zag Wanderer
December 20, 2021 5:09 pm

Even this paragraph is bizarre. The supply chain is actually an amazing example of the power of capitalism. It got screwed up because of government intervention. And will get fixed again by the free market. Shocking shocking analysis.

Reply to  Jim Veenbaas
December 20, 2021 5:23 pm

One of the problems is stimulating demand by trillions of dollars, while at the same time constricting supply by promoting COVID fear with oppressive regulations on business and paying too many people not to be productive. Supply and demand is such a simple concept, yet it’s either far above the heads of those in power or they know and the consequence of their malfeasance is on purpose.

Reply to  co2isnotevil
December 21, 2021 9:26 am

The only problem is that government spending does not stimulate demand, it only shifts it from the areas being taxed to the areas not being taxed.
If government spending is paid for by borrowing, it shifts demand from areas that rely on credit to those that don’t.
If the spending is paid for by printing new money, it merely shifts demand from the future to now, meaning demand will crash in the future.

Nick B.
Reply to  Zig Zag Wanderer
December 20, 2021 6:33 pm

I’m not sure anymore that free market exists. There are custom fees everywhere. I remember about 10 years ago customs on bolts and nuts in Canada were 80%! Is it free market or government regulated?

Reply to  Nick B.
December 21, 2021 9:27 am

According to most socialists, there is perfect communism, and everything else is a form of capitalism.

Reply to  Zig Zag Wanderer
December 20, 2021 11:20 pm

I lived for 31 years in a socialist command economy. Everything was in short supply, black market capitalism thrived, people were watched by the police state and if you did anything to ensure your business could carry on it was against the law and off to the cells you went.

In the meantime the politically connected sold licences, traded in forex on a skewed basis. The result was MacMansions and exotic cars and suits for the insiders, grinding poverty and fear for those outside the circle.

Socialism in any and all of its forms sucks. The market economy in a democratic framework brings opportunity and rewards for hard work.

Reply to  Keitho
December 21, 2021 9:29 am

In a free market, one advances based on what they know.
In socialism, one advances based on who they know.

Reply to  MarkW
December 21, 2021 6:00 pm

… and whose dik they suk

john harmsworth
Reply to  Zig Zag Wanderer
December 21, 2021 8:20 am

The limits of a simple theory. Capitalism causes companies to strive to reduce the cost of production and maximize that production. That’s why they are able to and want to put their product within reach of the lowest possible price purchaser. See-Henry Ford!
This is about the most fundamental truth of modern industrial economics. How can this guy have a degree and pretend to write about anything to do with economics?

Dave Fair
Reply to  john harmsworth
December 21, 2021 2:55 pm

His history degree provides no insights into agriculture, physics, economics & etc., yet he opines wildly on those topics. A typical Lib. Arts degree-holder who think he can run the world.

Reply to  Dave Fair
December 21, 2021 6:02 pm

The unmathed are free to be “expert” in economics and supply chains … because there is no rigor in their theories

December 20, 2021 2:19 pm

Sorry Salon … it’s not climate change or capitalism, but you may want to investigate what else Prince Philip wished for upon his death …

Curious George
Reply to  John Shewchuk
December 20, 2021 3:00 pm

What is the difference between Salon and Facebook?

Reply to  Curious George
December 20, 2021 3:08 pm

Don’t know — as I don’t use either.

Reply to  Curious George
December 20, 2021 5:09 pm

What the heck is Salon, George? Never heard of it, beyond my Great Aunt… and I don’t think she was talking about the same thing as you.

Climate believer
Reply to  H.R.
December 20, 2021 11:45 pm

“What the heck is Salon? “

An extreme Left wing propaganda outlet with a lot of disturbing views about the world.

Eric has really scraped the barrel posting from these degenerates.

Reply to  Climate believer
December 21, 2021 11:04 am

Unfortunately, a lot of people pay attention to these degenerates.

Joao Martins
Reply to  Curious George
December 21, 2021 3:00 am

One is more “elite” the other is more “common people”…

December 20, 2021 2:20 pm

How did we ever get by in the past when there was bad weather? Were we just too stupid to understand the catastrophic affects of weather and how it affects life on earth? Or is it that now we are smart and know the difference between nature and man’s intervention? If it hadn’t of been for Capitalism would we all be secure and well fed now? It’s obvious man is ruining life as we know it when you realize our suffering lasts so much longer now with the extension of lifespans.

Reply to  markl
December 20, 2021 4:15 pm

But, but, but … the “cherry shortage in 2012!!!” … aieeeeeeeeee!!! How did mankind survive!!?? Oh yeah, we’re omnivores

Reply to  markl
December 20, 2021 9:29 pm

How people got by? The local witch doctor/medicine man/priest communed with the spirits/gods, divined the required penance “his” people were required to pay, then worked them into a fearful frenzy to assure it would get done. That has been the pattern since human time began.

Last edited 1 year ago by AndyHce
Joseph Zorzin
December 20, 2021 2:21 pm

climate change and capitalism are behind the supply chain disruption the USA is currently experiencing

Showing extremely lazy and ignorant “journalism”.

A system that prioritizes profitability over everything else will make choices about who gets what first based on how they can make the most money, not on who needs it most or what will be most efficient.

Oh, how terrible to try to make the most money- just like teachers’ unions but that’s a wonderful thing to Dems. Or who needs it the most? I need a yacht, but I don’t seem to be getting one. Then he complains about “what will be the most efficient”. Efficiency is a very wonderful thing- anyone who doesn’t understand that has never run a business. Oh, that’s right, he’s a history graduate- whatever that means.

The problem is very obviously that something has gone very wrong with the offloading and land transport of goods.

Something has gone wrong? Try stupid port managers and the teamsters union. I’ve seen reports that other ports, especially in Asia, are far more efficient and loading and unloading containers.

Reply to  Joseph Zorzin
December 20, 2021 2:38 pm

Showing extremely lazy and ignorant “journalism”.

It’s not journalism, and hasn’t been for decades. It’s pure unadulterated propaganda.

J Mac
Reply to  Joseph Zorzin
December 20, 2021 3:39 pm

Longshoreman’s Union!

Zig Zag Wanderer
December 20, 2021 2:25 pm
From the linked article, which relies heavily on Piltdown Mann’s Crazy Conjectures ™, we get this:

Azhar concluded, “Our current capitalist system is, quite simply put, unsustainable; it leads to what ecological economists have called a ‘metabolic rift’ between humans and Nature. We can’t really be solving the crisis without moving towards a new economic system that restores the balance.”

This idiot is trying to claim that we need to ‘restore the balance’ with nature.

What he and his ilk never seem to get is that pretty much everything we have done since discovering agriculture has been to get away from Nature. Why? Because it’s not pleasant at all. We try everything we can to protect ourselves from nature, and to make our lives easier and more comfortable. Try sitting out the next thunderstorm without any shelter, for example.

Sorry Azhar, but Nature isn’t going to provide you with that soy latte. Capitalism is.

Last edited 1 year ago by Zig Zag Wanderer
Reply to  Zig Zag Wanderer
December 20, 2021 3:11 pm

In Biological Thermodynamics, a living system that is at equilibrium with its environment is dead. The hypothesized “metabolic rift” is easily overcome by employing modern technology.

Reply to  Zig Zag Wanderer
December 20, 2021 4:23 pm

Soy boys wouldn’t know how to scrounge for soy beans … “in balance” … with nature. They’d never collect enough to to make half a cake of tofu. They’d resort to.snaring squirrels … Naked and Afraid

Reply to  Kenji
December 20, 2021 9:33 pm

Quite possibly afraid but almost certainly extremely vicious.

Reply to  Zig Zag Wanderer
December 20, 2021 7:55 pm

Never in their wildest nightmares would the climate nutters realize that humans are part of Nature.

Dave Fair
Reply to  Zig Zag Wanderer
December 21, 2021 3:10 pm

Hey, guys! What’s not to like; I sat out a thunderstorm in a cave and you can too. The problem with that early on was it took free-market entrepreneurs to figure out ways to disposes the cave bears.

Tom Halla
December 20, 2021 2:30 pm

It is totally precious for an apparent socialist to blame “capitalism” for bad resource allocation. While this gives Salon the excuse to ignore California rules on heavy trucks, both a requirement that only fairly new trucks be used, and the notorious anti-independent contractor law restricting owner operators. They also get to ignore the longshoreman’s union rules essentially barring overtime.

Reply to  Tom Halla
December 20, 2021 4:30 pm

But, but, but … capitalism CAUSED UNIONISTAS to strike for easier work conditions. It’s capitalism’s fault the UNIONS have a stranglehold on the ports.

Oh! And COVID is caused by Capitalism … in communist China. Gain of function was designed to END Trump. It worked … until 2024

Donald B Thompson
Reply to  Tom Halla
December 21, 2021 9:22 am

The port hours were supposedly modified by agreement between Pres. Biden and the LA & Long Beach ports, but the workers still had limits on weekly hours unloading. Most of the claimed improvements are a con, as they have forced ships to loiter farther from the ports to avoid counting them as awaiting unloading.

The shipping is handicapped as described previously due to rules on permissible trucks. Foreign drivers (e.g., Mexican trucking companies) aren’t permitted by local regulation in spite of the shortage of American trucks and drivers. Further, the transfer terminals for loading onto trains are many miles away, which drastically decreases the efficiency for getting cargoes distributed across the country. Attempts to build closer train transfer points have been delayed since 2007 by California Environmental regulations and social justice lawsuits.

Union contracts have limited introduction of new container technologies, making the California ports some of the least efficient in the world. In addition, the dredging laws have prevented expansion of other west coast ports to accommodate large container ships.

But, yeah, it is the inefficiency of capitalism and not regulations that have caused supply chain issues.

December 20, 2021 2:34 pm

The supply chain disruptions are almost completely caused by efforts to fight the non-existent the so called climate change.
Most recently, the banning of trucks with engines more than (if I remember right) 10 years old in California, which immediately cut in half the number of trucks that can service California ports.

Zig Zag Wanderer
Reply to  MarkW
December 20, 2021 4:47 pm

Ten years old?

FFS, my land cruiser is 10 years old, and the engine looks like it just came out of the showroom, and drives like it too. I think it could easily run for another 20 years with good maintenance.

They claim to want to protect the environment, and then force people to use untold unnecessary resources to satisfy their lunatic ‘green’ agenda!

Reply to  Zig Zag Wanderer
December 20, 2021 7:59 pm

Zig, my 20 year old Sequoia is the same. Properly maintained it will easily outlive me. Somewhere in the Build Back Bankrupt bill is likely a provision to remove functioning elderly vehicles like these from the highways, so we can all suffer from the interlocks that were mandated in the last bill.

Climate believer
Reply to  Zig Zag Wanderer
December 21, 2021 10:58 am

Exactly Zig Zag, people are not going to say that about their Tesla.

Model S, now 10 years old, battery dead, $22,000 to replace it. lol yeah right.

Tombstone Gabby
Reply to  MarkW
December 21, 2021 2:49 pm

G’Day Mark,

“… trucks that can service California ports.”

It’s not just heavy-duty ‘transport’ trucks that are affected.

Had occasion recently to talk to a septic tank pumping business. Their pumper/tanker trucks are about to be ‘grounded’ due to the age of their motors. It’s a small family owned and operated business. They’re looking for an under- or non-serviced rural town in Arizona to move to.

December 20, 2021 2:34 pm

In a way, he’s correct. The effects of climate change and capitalism were supposed to drive people to abandon support for free markets and usher in fealty to the left. But at the start of 2020, even the Dems base was starting to notice that people were doing better than expected. So the big governments shut down the economy. It was only supposed to be enough to win some elections so they could spread US tax dollars at will. It caused the supply chain crisis, but just because the left pointed a loaded gun at the system doesn’t mean they should be blamed that it went off.

December 20, 2021 2:35 pm

Matthew Rozsa is a staff writer for Salon. He holds an MA in History from Rutgers University-Newark and is ABD in his PhD program in History at Lehigh University.

Matthew Rozsa hasn’t learned much history for all his education. When he states:

A system that prioritizes profitability over everything else will make choices about who gets what first based on how they can make the most money, not on who needs it most or what will be most efficient.

Of course, instead of futures contracts which capitalism uses to distribute food commodities worldwide, it is Marxist central planners who decide who needs what commodities the most and what will be most efficient. So far in this world, as shown by a hundred years of observation, the Marxist central planners are batting .000.

Teddy Lee
Reply to  Doonman
December 20, 2021 3:11 pm

Matthew, it’s been wasted time and a vast amount of money to get you to this low state of intellectual garbage.

Tim Gorman
Reply to  Doonman
December 20, 2021 3:53 pm

I don’t know where Rozsa got his economics training but they totally forgot to include the impacts of competition in a capitalist system. That is how a capitalist system maximizes distribution of goods – i.e. efficiency in distribution. It also means that those who *need* something wind up paying the least amount of money to satisfy that need. Competition drives innovation and investment (efficiency again), its why computers are so darned cheap today!

Government planning and regulation *always* screws up everything. Price and wage controls, coupled with government welfare (not to be confused with charity) always, ALWAYS, leads to disaster like in the Soviet Union, Nicaragua, Cuba, Maoist China, ……..

It’s Adam Smith’s invisible hand that works best, not government bureaucrats!

Reply to  Doonman
December 20, 2021 8:01 pm

Pure Marxism. His history texts must have erased Soviet breadlines.

Rud Istvan
December 20, 2021 2:48 pm

This is why Salon isn’t on my reading list. Onion and Babylon Bee are; they both make more sense than this drivel.

December 20, 2021 2:49 pm


December 20, 2021 2:49 pm

Dear Mr Rosa,
You sir are a moron!

Reply to  Steve Clough
December 20, 2021 6:06 pm

Or just seek professional help as he clearly has a brain injury.

Last edited 1 year ago by LdB
December 20, 2021 2:50 pm

All forms of C are bad. The ones that write to Salon and worserer

Tim Gorman
December 20, 2021 2:51 pm

Warming temperatures harmed American corn yields in 2010 and 2012″

Sorry, it was DROUGHT that caused the significant drop in harvest in 2012. And that affected the corn belt for only one year!

See attached graph. If warming temps due to climate change were the problem the corn harvest would not have recovered to continue producing record yields after 2012.

Rud Istvan
Reply to  Tim Gorman
December 20, 2021 3:43 pm

See my first post here in 2011, exposing the NRDC Congressional deception itself based on a deeply flawed study of US corn yields county by county. The ‘scientists’ deliberately omitted a known key cross term from their multivariate regression, and then after they became ‘famous’ stupidly posted their underlying data in graphical form, thereby proving themselves their academic misconduct.

Dave Fair
Reply to  Rud Istvan
December 21, 2021 3:21 pm

Yeah, Rud, but their ‘famous’ study (propaganda) still got into the public sphere, as planned. Did you ever see a retraction?

Reply to  Tim Gorman
December 20, 2021 6:55 pm

The chart of corn grain yields is non-specific for temperature. We get no idea of agronomic practices so that chart does not correlate to any exact causal relationship with temperature.

The Original Post mention of “warming temperature” affecting corn (maize) is too general. Whereas it’s link specifically contends 2010-2012 “high night time temperatures” provoked “premature budding” which is known to impact eventual grain yield.

Yes, maize can perform in transitory temperatures up to 112* Fahrenheit; however during the week of silking high temperatures can cause leaf rolling & for every 4 hours of temperature provoked leaf rolling there is about 1% reduction in grain yield.

Even under sufficient soil moisture conditions leaf rolling can occur in response to high temperature. A single episode of 93*-98* Fahrenheit during that key week does not impact eventual grain yield; should there be 5 consecutive days of 93*-98*F for 4 hours during silking then yields can be 2% less & 6 consecutive days of that high temperature for 4 hours yields lose about 4%

Regarding the claim it is only “DROUGHT” implicated in 2012 corn yields I want to explain something relevant. Rainfall precipitation affects field ambient temperatures; such that it lowers the maximum temperature, but raises the minimum temperature. Conversely, drought (as scarcity of rainfall) raises the maximum temperature, while lowering the minimum temperature. In plain language: drought is a factor in field crops experiencing higher temperatures.

Moreover, rainfall reduces the amount of solar radiation the field plants get; while drought increases the solar radiation they get. There are plant leaf dynamics that respond differently to the amount of sun light they get when it is relatively too much which have impacts beyond the local leaf.

In the field Maize photosynthesizes in an increasing manner up to around 95*F & then photosynthesis declines. Yet during grain development temperatures over 81*F are not ideal for maximum grain yield in maize not bred otherwise.

Last edited 1 year ago by gringojay
Dave Fair
Reply to  gringojay
December 21, 2021 3:24 pm

“… not bred otherwise.”

Reply to  Dave Fair
December 21, 2021 6:45 pm

… seed breeding for variable heat tolerance

Bryan A
Reply to  Tim Gorman
December 20, 2021 9:10 pm

Now that’s a hockey stick

Reply to  Tim Gorman
December 21, 2021 2:31 am

Looks like you might be using unadjusted data……………..

On the other hand the hockeystick gives the analysis a gravitas which is hard to deny.

4 Eyes
December 20, 2021 2:54 pm

Utterly moronic. I didn’t think humans could be this stupid. Tell me that this was all made up. Please.

Kevin McNeill
Reply to  4 Eyes
December 20, 2021 5:09 pm

Of course it was made up, that’s journalism today.

Teddy Lee
December 20, 2021 3:15 pm

Why write this carp in the hairdressers journal?

John Bell
December 20, 2021 3:22 pm

“Climate change” that ubiquitous (invisible) bogey man!

December 20, 2021 3:34 pm

As weather continues to warm, crops that depend on precise temperatures at specific times will be thrown off kilter or possibly wiped out.

Longer growing seasons are always better for crops, any farmer will tell you….and they’ll also tell you they didn’t get the perfect temp, rainfall, sun, whatever, last year….

Tim Gorman
Reply to  DMacKenzie
December 20, 2021 3:42 pm

Yep! Earlier dates for frost free temps means crops can take advantage of wintertime subsoil moisture during early growth, establishing better root systems. Higher nighttime temps means more growth during summer. Higher CO2 lets the plants survive better during dry periods through less moisture loss.

High temps are *NOT* harming crops harvests. In east central KS this year we saw no days over 100F. Max temps are moderating over the past twenty years leading to higher harvests.

I truly wonder where some of these climate alarmists live and whether they *ever* get out on the backroads of America to actually *see* what is going on!

Reply to  Tim Gorman
December 21, 2021 9:43 am

Even in the highly unlikely event that higher temperatures did hurt crop production, the solution is easy. Shift production poleward by a few miles.
Any land that had become to hot to grow corn, could be used to grow something else.
It’s also possible that strains that are more temperature tolerant would be developed.

Farmers have been dealing with changing conditions since early man first noticed that seeds left on the ground sprouted and produced more seeds.

Reply to  Tim Gorman
December 21, 2021 11:25 am

Tim, I’m pretty sure they never get anywhere more “natural” than their local city park.

Reply to  DMacKenzie
December 20, 2021 5:02 pm

Crop yields, irregardless of growing season length, certainly “… can depend on precise temperatures at specific times …”. That detail is correct, without automatically verifying alarmist ideas about plants being wiped out. I will elaborate further using wheat as an example.

Quotation that follows is as per Farouq et al out of the University of Western Australia from (2011) “Heat stress in wheat during reproductive and grain-filling phases”; originally published in journal Critical Reviews in Plant Sciences, 30:1-17 (2011). The free full text is available on-line from; however not easy to track down for free using most internet search engines.

[Quote regarding temperature] … ” most sensitive period is between the appearance of double ridges on the shoot apex & fly leaf … because spikelets begin to form in the spike from ridges of tissue between ridges of undifferentiated leaf primordia, called the double ridge stage. Each spikelet meristem then starts to produce florets. The reduction in duration of emergence to double ridge and double ridge to anthesis reduces spikelet number per spike and grain number per spikelet.”

As part of the above dynamic report authors specify that although elevated heat leads to faster spike development the consequence is a reduced number of spikelets. A lower number of spikelets subsequently means there are a lower number of grains per spike.

The above details are not the only relative issues regarding wheat’s sensitivity to temperature; but I’m not going to try summarizing more. For those WUWT readers who do not know certain words: the “meristem” is a stem cell niche where different ratios of plant hormones interact, as long as those stem cells have not become some specific kind of plant tissue they are “undifferentiated”, and as an undifferentiated stem cell initiates re-organization under hormonal changes it assumes a primordial role (as primordia) to become a specific type of plant cell.

Below is the above cited report’s Figure 1 charting variable average (mean) temperatures’ impact during the period of anthesis to harvest; obviously it does not detail specific wheat strains, nor variable conditions of precipitation/fertilization/etc.

Reply to  gringojay
December 20, 2021 8:49 pm

About the wheat spike crucial double ridge stage, when a raised stem cell niche (meri-stem) of undifferentiated potential leaves alternates with a stem cell niche of potential spikelets on the same spike. What transpires at that stage of wheat development is related to basically 2 different plant phyto-hormones’ (auxin & cytokinin) relative ratio.

In a stem cell niche auxin contributes to maintenance of the stem cell niche (meri-stem). It keeps the meri-stem from initiating a new organ; in our scenario auxin can be considered as holding the spikelet inflorescence meristem back from emerging.

There is a salient feature of the wheat spike double ridge stage having leaf primordia that are undifferentiated meri-stems. Those primordia are “sinks” for auxin to move to from the adjoining spikelet meri-stem ridge.

Those leaf primordia on the spike start out having relatively low auxin at the surface. As a consequence of bio-mechanical signals the nearby spikelet meri-stem registers the neighboring primordia’s auxin %; causing a polarization within the spikelet meri-stem of auxin shuttling from it (spikelet meri-stem) to an adjacent leaf primordia.

Bear in mind that any stem cell meristem niche exists with a ratio of auxin and cytokinin. Cytokinin there is integral to the stem cell niche’s size and activity of stem cells within that meri-stem niche (distinct from auxin’s maintenance role there).

Put another way, raising the ratio of cytokinin to auxin in a spikelet meri-stem “ridge” causes both an increase in the size of stem cells within the niche and increase in stem cell activity within that meristem. Whereas any meristem with a decreased ratio of cytokinin to auxin experiences a reduction of stem cell activity and reduction of stem cell niche size.

Backtrack now to the feature of how wheat spikes’ ridge of undifferentiated leaf primordia channel auxin over to it (from spikelet stem cell meri-stem). As the primordia surface meri-stem cells increase auxin levels that auxin creates a gradient channeling the auxin deeper into that meri-stem niche cells, thereby creating a meti-stem with a reduced cytokinin to auxin ratio – it won’t differentiate into a leaf.

Whereas in the spikelet meri-stem the auxin sent out creates a higher cytokinin to auxin ratio. What occurs as a consequence of that hormonal change is that zones of cells within the meri-stem niche begin to differentiate (become actual spikelets); otherwise, as long as auxin ratio stays steady in that spikelet meri-stem the potential spikelet just stays undifferentiated.

Even once the spikelet meri-stem has differentiated into a true spikelet that spikelet at an early stage requires things from the plant being supplied to it. This activity is through cells (pro-cambrium cells) which involves cytokinin.

Which brings me to the close of this long explanation of my immediately prior cited report’s assertion when high temperature matters for wheat yield. To whit I close stating the fact that irregardless of any auxin dynamic the % of cytokinin varies with temperature (and for that matter also photo-period and light irradiance); cytokinin is prone to degrade under high temperature.

Gunga Din
December 20, 2021 3:47 pm

I suppose the attempts to eliminate fossil fuels, resulting in a rise in gas prices, and those who are profiting from Government subsidizes to supply $Green Energy$ and, maybe those who say only Union trucks can pick up loads from the docks might have something to do with supply chain problems.
And considering that many of the things we import used to be made in the US …
Sure, “Climate Change” hype and those capitalize on it (sometimes those who are greedy for more than just money) are causing the supply chain issues.

Reply to  Gunga Din
December 21, 2021 9:45 am

I’ve always wondered why “being greedy for more money”, is only bad when someone else is doing it.

December 20, 2021 3:49 pm

obviously he might be a graduate but he is certainly not educated

Reply to  John
December 21, 2021 9:58 am

That seems to be happening more often these days.

The Indomitable Snowman, Ph.D.
December 20, 2021 4:00 pm

FWIW, my work took me to Seattle for a couple days earlier in the month. On those two days, our meeting perch was on the forty-somethingth floor of one of the tall buildings in the main downtown business district – with a great view out over Puget Sound, and a great view down into the port of Seattle.

The little ferry port was very busy – ferries coming and going all day. In contrast, the big cargo port (and Seattle is supposed to be one of the biggest cargo ports in the country) was to say the least sleepy. There was nothing going on. There were a few containers in a stack, but absolutely nothing was happening – no one and nothing moving around, no ships being unloaded, no ships coming or going, no ships even moving, no ships sitting out in the sound waiting to come in; during the two days, the few ships at the berths just sat there and never moved.

On the first day around noontime, I spotted a container ship meandering around at the mouth of the port area, but it didn’t seem to be doing anything. On the second day, in the afternoon, a container ship guided by two tugboats came in toward the port. That was it.

I have NO IDEA what was going on, but, well there was basically NOTHING going on. Nothing moving, nothing happening, no ships moving, no ships coming or going.

Reply to  The Indomitable Snowman, Ph.D.
December 20, 2021 8:32 pm

Landed containers in Seattle are likely quickly set afire. Climate justice and all that…

December 20, 2021 4:15 pm

Obviously, socialism and communism do a much better job at supply chain problems. Just ask Venezuela where bread waits for people instead of people waiting for bread in the capitalist United States … oh, wait, I have that backwards.

Well, just look at communist East Germany where the BMW’s and Mercedes were as plenty as the sand on the sea, unlike capitalist West Germany where the only car people had was the hard to obtain Trabant … oh wait, I have that backwards too.

Chris Hanley
December 20, 2021 4:19 pm

Capitalism huh? Here’s some history Matthew:
At various times even the great Stalin had his supply chain problems; his first and probably most successful solution was straight-out confiscation of crops and livestock causing millions of deaths from starvation (collateral damage, couldn’t be helped) and later by putting on trial rightists and wreckers finding them guilty by their own confessions and executing them.
No Matthew, despite occasional scarcities and gluts, on balance I still think capitalism a free market and supply-and-demand is the optimal system.

Zig Zag Wanderer
Reply to  Chris Hanley
December 20, 2021 4:51 pm

C’mon man! Stalin, like Genghis Khan, was a veritable Climate Hero. Look at all those people no longer producing CO2!

David Ging
December 20, 2021 4:20 pm

“American corn yields in 2010 and 2012, as well as $220 million in losses for Michigan cherries in 2012.”

What do corn yields and MI cherry losses in 2010 and 2012 have to do with supply chain problems in 2021?

Has the kid who wrote this crap ever taken a basic logic course. He’s a History graduate – of what, fifth grade. OMG, think before you write.

mark stevens
December 20, 2021 4:22 pm

This didn’t help any:

That wasn’t a problem caused by capitalism.

December 20, 2021 4:41 pm

I’m calling you on the claim that this guy graduated. Ya can’t fix ………!

Chris Hanley
December 20, 2021 4:45 pm

Climate Change and Capitalism Causing Supply Chain Disruptions.

Matthew forgot the third in the trifecta: racism.

Last edited 1 year ago by Chris Hanley
Jim Veenbaas
December 20, 2021 5:04 pm

Junior high logic. Shocking.

Joel O’Bryan
December 20, 2021 5:40 pm

This is like saying “Life causes death.”

Nick B.
Reply to  Joel O’Bryan
December 20, 2021 6:52 pm

Life is a lethal disease which transmitted in a sexual way.

Joel O'Bryan
Reply to  Nick B.
December 20, 2021 8:04 pm

asexual bacteria would disagree.

Rory Forbes
December 20, 2021 5:43 pm

Well … there’s yet another example of an utterly wasted education. All Matthew Rosa has managed to do is demonstrate the numerous ways his education has failed him. Apart from the fact that he has typically conflated weather with climate he’s clueless about what capitalism is. “the built-in structural problem of capitalism” is what precisely? It is the free-market that made it possible to have the wonderful lives we enjoy. Capitalism doesn’t just improve the lives of the wealthy (where there’s little that can be improved upon). It improves everyone’s life. As for the “supply chin disruptions” … that can be placed solely on the shoulders of those who gave us the plandemic.

Reply to  Rory Forbes
December 20, 2021 8:30 pm

Here’s hoping he has a gigantic college loan. Such worldly insight should not come easily.

Reply to  Rory Forbes
December 20, 2021 10:18 pm

The governor of California may well be a fellow traveler, and eager to be disruptive, but you give him far too much credit with any claim that he is responsible for bringing the virus into existence or into circulation. Same for the legislature. They do have significant responsibility for the distribution of commerce in, and passing through, the state, however.

Rory Forbes
Reply to  AndyHce
December 20, 2021 11:06 pm

I don’t remember mentioning the governor of California or the state itself.

Reply to  Rory Forbes
December 21, 2021 1:22 am

You wrote

As for the “supply chin disruptions” … that can be placed solely on the shoulders of those who gave us the plandemic.

California, i.e. the government of CA, has a big responsibility for the “disruptions” but I doubt they have any primary responsibility for the virus’s existence or injection into society.

Reply to  AndyHce
December 21, 2021 10:03 am

The key is the use of the word “plandemic” vs “pandemic”.
Rory is referring not to just the virus itself, but to all of the government responses to the virus.

Pat from kerbob
December 20, 2021 5:49 pm

Supply chain disruptions, just like famines, are caused by government mismanagement.

Reply to  Pat from kerbob
December 20, 2021 6:10 pm

No only of western democracies if you believe the leftards the communist and socialist ones have no issues not ever …. yep they are so believable 🙂

Last edited 1 year ago by LdB
Reply to  LdB
December 21, 2021 4:47 am

I have informed Party Officials of your correct thinking and loyalty to The Party, and they were so impressed that there will be not one, not two, but three extra maggots in your gruel tonight, LdB.

The lesson is that Party loyalty is rewarded with extra protein rations.

December 20, 2021 6:13 pm

Regulations with or without rigor. Mandates a la mode or not. And monopolistic bandwidth and congestion. The antithesis of capitalism… market economics. The very model of [catastrophic] [anthropogenic] climate cooling… warming… change.

Last edited 1 year ago by n.n
Tom Abbott
December 20, 2021 6:56 pm

From the article: “When it comes to food-based supply chains, climate change is another major culprit, albeit one that is very difficult to quantify.”

I would say it’s impossible to quantify because there is no evidence that Human-caused Climate Change is real.

Tom Abbott
December 20, 2021 7:02 pm

From the article: “As weather continues to warm, crops that depend on precise temperatures at specific times will be thrown off kilter or possibly wiped out.”

The author is behind the times. The weather is not warming, it is currently cooling globally. Temperatures have cooled about 0.6C since the highpoint in 2016.

How will this 0.6C cooling affect the crops? I probably shouldn’t expect an answer out of someone who thinks it is warming.

December 20, 2021 8:04 pm

I’m employed by a minor US manufacturer of heavy power transmission components, all manufactured from material sourced domestically. Remarkably, we currently boast the shortest lead times in the industry. Love that supply chain disruption.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  roaddog
December 21, 2021 5:58 am

Yes, we need to shorten those supply lines. Bring that business home.

December 20, 2021 8:39 pm

One of the worst supply-chain debacles in US history is certainly not being caused by climate change, but rather by the Longshoreman Unions who refuse to hire the 70,000+ non-Union longshoremen who would be required to keep our major ports running 24/7 like all other industrialized countries do…

Another major issue is California’s new heavy-duty truck EPA emission standards which went into effect on January 1st 2021, that prohibit about 60% of the US truck fleet from even entering California as they don’t meet these new EPA standards…

Longshoreman Unions also have provisions in their contracts that limit the use of robotics and automation to protect Union jobs (who make an AVERAGE salary of $171,000/year plus a $100,000/year pension…)

Because US ports are not running 24/7, California ports are globally ranked in the 300’s in cargo processing efficiency, while NYC’s port is the highest US ranked port at 89th in the world, which is absolutely pathetic considering the US is the 2nd largest trading country in the world behind China…

Of course of Pete Buttigeig (Secretary of Transportation) is too busy taking 2 months off for maternity leave to address this US port disaster/supply-chain debacle which is getting worse with each passing day..

Leftists have some nerve blaming this mess on Climate Change…

Reply to  SAMURAI
December 20, 2021 10:22 pm

If you have been paying any attention for at least the last decade, it is the go to excuse for virtually every problem.

Reply to  AndyHce
December 21, 2021 12:02 am


Yes, Leftist have completely lost their collective minds over so many things, including their crazy CAGW cult.

We’re unfortunately living in an era marking the death of Western Civilization if Leftist zealots remain in control of virtually every aspect of our once great societies: science, politics, the arts, media, high tech, entertainment, sports, the Internet, religious institutions, public schools, universities, etc.,

Mark Whitney
December 21, 2021 5:02 am

This is the line that gets me:
In addition to climate change, there is also the built-in structural problem of capitalism itself: Concentration of power…

Concentration of power under the knighted elite is exactly what these socialist chuckleheads propose.

Bruce Cobb
December 21, 2021 5:48 am

What a bunch of malarkey.

December 21, 2021 6:25 am

Ridiculous bullshit. Again, confusing “climate” with “climate change”. The climate can remain utterly stagnant yet still have highly variable “weather”. Any dolt knows that.

The supply chain problems are entirely caused by the economic disruptions of the COVID pandemic, which as affected every social institution on the planet.

December 21, 2021 6:39 am

“… with their fluorescent lights …”
Oh, the purple lights

Cameron Kuhns
December 21, 2021 7:48 am

Obviously Matthew is full of BS and doesn’t know what he is talking about.

Andrew Lale
December 21, 2021 8:03 am

That’s clickbait of the worst sort. But then… Salon.

john harmsworth
December 21, 2021 8:12 am

So how does he explain the chronic, catastrophic and devastating “supply chain issues” of every Communist country in history, I wonder?

Jeffery P
December 21, 2021 8:14 am

If we didn’t have capitalism, there would be no supply chain problems because people would have nothing to buy. No products, no supply chain, see? Brilliant!

Actually, history teaches us that Marxism in it’s various forms leads to nothing but supply chain issues. A Five Year Plan cannot properly calculate the supply needed to meet demand. This results in a combination of an over-supply of things people don’t want and an under-supply of things people want or need.

The stories about lines outside store in the late USSR aren’t just stories, they’re true. Supply was so poor that when people saw a line forming, they stopped and queued up. It didn’t matter what the line was for. Whatever it was, people figured it must be something they needed.

If history isn’t your bag, man, then just look at Venezuala and Cuba today.

Dave Fair
Reply to  Jeffery P
December 21, 2021 3:41 pm

Or a nighttime satellite picture of the Korean Peninsula.

December 21, 2021 8:18 am

I prefer free enterprise as a system for economic prosperity. The term capitalism was first coined by a socialist in negative terms.

If climate change, as they define it, caused low crop yield wouldn’t it be low every year and not here and there. An introduction to the weather might be useful.

The interruption in supply chain shows how much depends on the blue collar worker. And the consequences of leadership not earned.

December 21, 2021 8:50 am

Venezuela is probably a good place to study supply chain failures. Interfere in the free flow of goods, services and capital and you have Venezuela.

December 21, 2021 9:03 am

one that is very difficult to quantify

“We can’t really tell how bad it is, but trust us, it’s BAD”

December 21, 2021 9:43 am


That is downright silly!

Capitalism, which created the magnificently functional supply chain is now the cause of disruptions?

Are these nutbars competing for a prize for the most ridiculous claim?

December 21, 2021 11:32 am

> Climate change has nothing to do with the USA’s supply chain problems.

Not directly. California taxes causing $4.80 diesel in the vicinity of the Ports of LA/LB along with emissions restrictions from California’s response to climate change are making it hard to offload those container ships. Cheap fuel and more qualified trucks would help but climate inspired restrictions prevent.

Michael Nagy
December 21, 2021 12:31 pm

Roza has some nerve talking about a shortage of corn. Ethanol has been the biggest culprit in the shortage of food corn all over the world. Remember wen ethanol first went big and the people of Mexico went on riots due to the high cost of corn? Ethanol is the biggest environmental blunder ever made by the greens yet it continues.

Bob Hunter
December 21, 2021 12:41 pm

No better example of supply chain mismanagement, Europe relying on Russian Natural Gas. Russia will be led by autocrats during the foreseeable future and Germany et al trusting Russia. I would LOL except it is the poor who will suffer, not the European leaders who made the decision.

December 21, 2021 10:16 pm

In addition to climate change, there is also the built-in structural problem of capitalism itself: Concentration of power, and the fact that supply chain disruptions also exist because the global economic system is built around what individual powerful corporations have decided will maximize their profits. 

Individual powerful corporations“, don’t make a cent, if they don’t supply produce to markets at a price-point the market will buy their goods at, and those super-duper ultra powerful concentrated corporation baddies can make a profit, sufficient to do it continuously, day to day, so there is no such disruption.

What really happens is a new production and delivery mechanism or substitution will occur. So what exactly does the author see as such a problem?

It’s no problem, its a marker opportunity for someone else to deliver a saleable good to the market. Hence, no disruption occurs.

And let’s face it, a “concentration of power never occurs in authoritarian states. Yeah, that never happens. … OMG! … this guy has a degree or a doctorate?

And is there some other unstated alternative which the author wants us all to move toward? Seems the answer is, “Um … well … I just don’t want to come right out and say in public, that I’m so dumb that I think authoritarian communism is the solution to climate-changery-based supply-chain disruption.”

But can we burn coal like the Authoritarians do if we convert to the darkside? … yeah … nah … I didn’t think so.

Someone should show this fool of the video of empty shop shelves, and bakeries without bread when the Soviet Union collapsed. Then he’d maybe get a clue about supply chain failure, concentration of power, lack of private corporations, and why authoritarian communism didn’t work.

Willem Post
December 22, 2021 7:05 am


Whenever a government prints money and distributes it by plane-loads all over the US, people will spend it on goods and services.

But the supply of goods and services was not simultaneously augmented, because that would take some time.

As a result, plentiful money chasing the available goods and services will increase the prices of these goods and services.

If, on top of that, the production of goods and service is hindered, such as by COVID, then plentiful money will chase FEWER goods and services, which leads to higher and higher inflation rates, while the economy is stagnant, aka “stagflation”.

All this should have been foreseen by wise leaders.

However, if an unwise cabal of “leaders”, who illicitly grabbed government power, are not up to the job, then all sort of terrible things will happen, which is exactly the case in the US.
God bless you all, because you are led by incompetents.

Have a Holy and Joyous Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Richard Ford
December 22, 2021 8:57 am

Did I read that capitalism concentrates power in very few hands?.
That is the hallmark of socialism not capitalism. For capitalism to work there has to be interaction between marketers, producers, banks and the consumers. Socialists just decree and revel in their ignorance.

December 22, 2021 9:04 am

It’s weird how both Climate Change and Capitalism cause so many problems that only really smart people can see.

Lawrence Ayres
December 22, 2021 11:53 pm

The writer is not a farmer that is for sure. Like any academic they think they know the answer but do not know how to prove it. Despite localised effects of drought or heat waves overall the data shows that as the planet “warms” (does it?) and increased CO2 leads to higher production the world is awash in food, more so than at any other time. It seems warmth and additional CO2 are beneficial rather than disastrous as the alarmists claim. It is a pity we no longer have a reliable press which used to tell their readers such things. The MSM is committing suicide and I for one cannot wait for it’s last gasping breathe. I see CNN is having difficulty breathing even now.

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