We’ve hit a new normal.
I’ve needed a couple of days to think about all this. I don’t write much about climate destabilization anymore. I am moderator for the REDDIT sub that’s for CLI-FI but honestly that’s about it. It’s too fucking painful to stay focused on that sort of news and besides, after having done it for more than five years, I know what’s going on. But this week, hurricane Otis was a shocker.
You could have easily missed it because with all the horror and humor of USA politics it didn’t get all that much air time. Plus, the main target was in Acapulco. Just sayin. I saw the NYTimes said it put a stop to a mining convention. Right, just sayin. An hour ago CNN posted this:
So, Tuesday Morning (10/24/2023) Otis was a tropical storm cruising along the southwest coast of Mexico. No big deal. But when the big O made landfall near Acapulco just after midnight on the 25th it did so as a Category 5 hurricane – that means winds in excess of 150 mph (240 kph). It is the first of it’s kind. Not only has no Cat5 hurricane ever made landfall from the Eastern North Pacific since records began; also, no hurricane has ever made landfall with this achieved rate of intensity from the Eastern North Pacific basin.
Its rate of intensification was three times the criteria for ‘rapid intensification’ – a rate only exceeded in the Eastern North Pacific basin by Hurricane Patricia in 2015, a storm that intensified by 105 knots (120 miles per hour, 195 kilometers per hour) in 24 hours.
Patricia’s rapid intensification and peak intensity were situated over water, whereas Otis continued to intensify right up to the moment its center crossed the coastline. The intensification rate of Otis is likely to be among the top ten all-time rates of intensification. source
For those of us who live in hurricane prone areas this is a scary new reality. Do I now worry when a Tropical Storm is coming my way? Hell yeah!
This is part of the patterns we are seeing with regard to global climate destabilization. For example, this summer the incredibly hot waters around the Florida Keys:
The temperature recorded was an astonishing 101.1°. Manatee Bay in the Florida Keys recorded a water temp of 101.1° earlier this week. No sensor has ever recorded a temperature of 101° anywhere in the world’s oceans.Jul 26, 2023. source
Even with disclaimers there is no doubt to the shocking truth about these water temps, which are key in fueling hurricanes, that they’re higher than they were decades ago. MUCH HIGHER.
Another example. Did you know that Over 100 beautiful, amazing, pink dolphins cooked in the Amazon river a month ago?
Jacuzzi-level temperatures of the Amazon River have killed more than 100 pink river dolphins (Inia geoffrensis) in Brazil over the past week after more than 120 carcasses were seen floating in Lake Tefé, which is connected to the Amazon River.
According to the Mamirauá Institute, a research facility funded by the Brazilian Ministry of Science, the dolphins’ deaths can likely be attributed to a historic drought and record-high water temperatures, which in some places have exceeded 102 degrees Fahrenheit — the same heat of a typical Jacuzzi. Not only is this intolerably warm for the river dolphins, but it also reduces the oxygen levels in the water, which render the area even more unliveable. source
And the changes aren’t limited to area around the equator. Another example, from this time last year…Billions of snow crabs have disappeared from the waters around Alaska. Scientists say overfishing is not the cause
Snow crabs are cold-water species and found overwhelmingly in areas where water temperatures are below 2 degrees Celsius, Litzow says. As oceans warm and sea ice disappears, the ocean around Alaska is becoming inhospitable for the species.
“There have been a number of attribution studies that have looked at specific temperatures in the Bering Sea or Bering Sea ice cover in 2018, and in those attribution studies, they’ve concluded that those temperatures and low-ice conditions in the Bering sea are a consequence of global warming,” Litzow said. source
Those people and their economy that depend upon bringing this food delicacy to us humans have seen, this month, the ban finally lifted.
Biologist Mark Stichert said the surveys suggest that the crash that forced two years of closure in the Bristol Bay red king crab fishery, the major Alaska source for that highly prized seafood species, has bottomed out.
“The decline has stopped. But whether or not we’re seeing a rebound in the biomass is hard to say,” Stichert said during the Thursday briefing. He is the Department of Fish and Game’s Kodiak-based groundfish and shellfish fisheries management coordinator. source
Well, when you lose billions in animal population I guess seeing that plateau is good enough reason to bend to pressure and resume business even if it is at greatly reduced amounts.
Disclaimer: I love king crab legs. I don’t order them anymore. Ever. I’ll never have them again. I’m not bragging, I just recognize that it’s time for us super special (not!) humans to start getting into the habit of making sacrifices, however small.
I am so very sick and tired of hearing politicians and CEOs and all these climate deniers (and I’m thinking of Shellenberger, too) tell us we’re alarmists. I’m not immune to conspiracy theories, I’m probably too open minded for my own good, but I also believe in science, data, and what I can see with my own eyes.
Speaking of eyes… the NYTimes had a interesting article yesterday: The Scientists Watching Their Life’s Work Disappear. Some are stubborn optimists. Others struggle with despair. Their faces show the weight they carry as they witness the impact of climate change. (Alternative Link here).
As I read that article yesterday I stared for a long time at the photos. At the eyes of those scientists. It was heartbreaking. How can they not feel despair? People wonder why activists do stupid things like block their route to work or glue themselves to roads… these people are also in despair and desperate. They don’t know what else to do. I get it.
I’m also very sick and tired of those politicians, CEOs, and activists who are working so diligently to bring about change and help our green world. What have you all done? I’ve been hearing this shite since the 70s. Where are the actual results? The green party? A fucking joke. And let me clue you to something else, electric cars aren’t the game changers, folks! Where do you think that electricity comes from? What about the US economy that depends on huge ass ships to truck garbage throw away products back and forth to China?! But hey, China certainly adores coal. I hate to but I agree with Andrew Neil on this one.
No, I can’t get wound up about this. I’ve done it too many times. It makes my stomach hurt and my head ache. At least, now, I know I’m not alone.
A majority of Americans support prioritizing the development of renewable energy sources. Two-thirds of U.S. adults say the country should prioritize developing renewable energy sources, such as wind and solar, over expanding the production of oil, coal and natural gas, according to a survey conducted in June 2023. source
During the course of my lifetime I’ve seen that percentage change and I believe we’re near a tipping point but will it matter?
I’ve spent a lot of time looking for it and then found it in one of my old NEWS posts. ha!!! Here is why I ask if it will really matter:
So, yeah, just because two-thirds of USA adults want things to change certainly doesn’t mean it’ll change anything at all.
Okay, it’s time for me to stop and go back to putting my head in the sands of creative writing, crazy A.I. developments, playing video games, and listening to music. My psyche is so much healthier there. Meanwhile, Otis took the life of at least 27 people and caused billions in damages. Hohum… welcome to the new normal.