Whenever there’s a heatwave it is confidently put down to global warming. It doesn’t matter whether it’s actually unusual, or that since there has been no global warming in the last seven years its continued lack of progress can’t be causing anything. But when a news outlet blurts out an inconvenient truth like “Where in the world is the summer heat?” you just know what’s coming. It’s merely weather. In this case “Blame the jet stream”.
Now you may think you know where the summer heat is: in the pages of newspapers telling us of records set in parts of the United States. But when they say records, they don’t mean records of the “it was never this hot” variety so much as “there was a date in spring that was hotter than that date has been since the Little Ice Age began”. In fact you can find a colour-coded map of the United States online that shows the decade in which each state set their all-time heat record, and it doesn’t look the way unwary consumers of mainstream media might suppose since the most common colour is 1930s purple.
In some other parts of the world, where it’s now the beginning of winter not summer, they’re getting extraordinary cold, from Australia to Argentina. But it’s just weather, of course. The MSN story we kicked off with says “Summer heat is on a temporary hiatus across much of Canada this week, but that's not the case across pockets of North America.” And they go on to say that it’s hot in Death Valley, a stunning situation in early June obviously. And that “The warmest temperatures reported around the planet fall, unsurprisingly, in the Middle East. But, over the past couple of days, it has soared to new global heights for 2022.” Again, duh. It’s summer there. Did they expect it to be hotter in the Middle East in January than in June?
Elsewhere in this Newsletter we note that even when there are heat waves, they are less fatal than they used to be. But we do insist that a uniform standard be applied to trends toward hot or cold.
Thus it’s also surely relevant that the Pacific Northwest of the United States, which along with adjacent bits of Canada saw some anomalous heat last year, just saw its coldest April since satellite records began according to Cliff Mass. He added “And now the depressing part. May is also turning out to be cool... and wet.” But if you actually don’t want there to be a global warming crisis, it’s not depressing at all. And while we appreciate that nobody wants to look like the small child who shouted wolf, it would take some kind of hurt pride, vested interest or both to realize there was no wolf and refuse to admit it.
MSN also got kind of mixed up about how the weather works in another story saying “A rare ‘Triple-dip’ La Niña could mean a wild winter” before saying it could mean yet another cold one. But then the video presenter recovered her bearings, saying (around 1:26) that the big question is how climate change is affecting La Niña and El Niño and that while it’s complicated by 2050 something will happen. So see it’s all about climate except when it’s not.
Recent CBC headline said that in Canada, in summer 2021, there were 619 deaths from excess heat.