Things have been, shall we say, interesting, for folks in New Jersey who like to dissect weather trends. Snow and ice storms in October. Cold temperatures when it used to be hot and vice versa. Hurricanes Irene and Sandy. What’s going on? Climate change?
Not according to Governor Chris Christie who recently opined (among other things) that there was no proof climate change had anything to do with Hurricane Sandy.
The insurance industry however, is definitely worried about sea level rise caused by climate change and how that will continue to amplify the destructive effects of such storms.
That’s a distinction worth noting this week when many are asking if the Moore, Oklahoma tornadoes were triggered by climate change. Rather, scientists say, tornadoes will occur anyway, but are now operating in an changed environment — warmer overall temperatures, which exacerbate their intensity. In the same way, according to scientists, Hurricane Sandy’s inherent winds and sea surge were perhaps of greater intensity due to glacial melt, with has been traced to climate change.
New Jersey’s Climate Central, an independent scientific research and information organization, notes that what was learned during and after Sandy, as it directly relates to that high sea storm surge, merits serious consideration for future preparedness.
The New Jersey Climate Adaption Alliance at the Rutgers School of Environmental Studies, notes that “A changing climate and rising sea levels will have a devastating impact on New Jersey’s economy, the health of our residents, the State’s natural resources, and the extensive infrastructure system that delivers transportation services, energy and clean water to millions of New Jerseyans.”
What do you think?