Free-Range Weather

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Intensity of Hurricanes Should Increase with Global Warming

Screen Grab from NY Times Hurricane Video :: NY Times

Screen Grab from NY Times Hurricane Video :: NY Times

I just got around to watching this New York Times video on how climate change will effect the intensity of hurricanes. It was published shortly after Typhoon Haiyan devastated the central Philippines, killing thousands and laying waste to the city of Tacloban. While the graphics are pretty rudimentary, the reporting is outstanding, clearly telling the story about why hurricanes should become more intense the warmer the planet becomes.

The report says that while it’s impossible to say that climate change made Haiyan more intense than it “should” have been, the overheated climate will produce warmer water and higher sea levels, providing the ingredients to make future hurricanes more fierce (and destructive if they strike land). The video is well worth two minutes of your time.

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Can Lasers Change the Weather?

cloudsLet’s see, we know that cow flatulence is a potent (ahem) greenhouse gas and that some unlucky scientists in the UK have been tasked with measuring the unfortunate gas. Billions of tiny termites can also pump out an amazing amount of methane, making the little insects potential weather changers as well.

Homo sapiens have been pumping out greenhouse gases since the Industrial Revolution in the mid-1800s. Scientists are constantly looking for ways to ameliorate our climate-changing ways by blocking the amount of sunlight that hits the Earth, and they may have found a new way to do it.

Accuweather.com reports that European researchers have created artificial cirrus clouds using high-energy lasers. It’s not a practical solution for limiting the amount of solar radiation we receive – yet, but it might be in a few years. Cool beans.