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Now you see it, now you do

30 Oct 2019 | OP ED Watch

We and others have noted the annoying tendency of climate alarmists to dismiss cold events as just weather while pointing to warm ones as man-made climate change. But Marshall Shepherd folds himself double on this issue in Forbes in an unusually thorough way, insisting that the September blizzard in the Rockies is just weather and, being unrelated to climate change, is caused by it. As with the joke about what you get if you cross a deconstructionist with a mafioso (someone who makes you an offer you can’t understand) the resulting argument is hard to test.

Shepherd’s reasoning, as in the cliché, must be seen to be disbelieved. He starts out polemically that “I predicted several days ago that some people would be tweeting that this early season snowstorm in parts of the Rocky Mountain region somehow refutes anthropogenic climate change.” Then he went all reasonable, saying “It was as predictable as the sunrise or a pendulum changing sides. By now, we are used to seeing people tweet such things on a cold day or when it snows. The counter punch that I often hear is that “people do the same thing with a hot day or a heatwave.” The reality is that cherry-picking one day, one storm, or one week of weather to describe climate change is problematic and may reveal a lack of understanding of weather and climate.”

Glad to hear it. So if we stop pointing to cold weather you’ll stop pointing to hot? Ah but nay. In the first place, as Eric Worrall notes on Watts Up With That, a certain Marshall Shepherd unequivocally linked the European heat wave to… climate change. In the second, he follows up his brief foray into reasonableness with a walk in Wonderland.

He tells us “Here’s why the snowstorm in the Rockies and surrounding regions says nothing about climate change. ” And adds “To be clear, this is a weather event. I am not attributing it to climate change at all.” (His italics.) So of course (drum roll please) we then get “there is a credible body of scientific literature that finds that extreme snowfall events may be connected to climate change.” So hot weather is climate change and cold weather is… more climate change.

Having trouble figuring out how to test your theory there, sir.

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