In the past months one of the most popular topics in Europe and America was the weather (especially the bad weather). Part of this climate condition was Polar Vortex: a phenomenon that hit on the USA caused the death of many people and billions of dollars of damages (five according to The Guardian). It led at least a dozen of Governors to declare a state of emergency and forced some of the world's top airports to shut down for some weeks. The Polar Vortex has brought to the lowest temperatures of history and also brought snow in southern States. It's hilarious, and dramatic too, that some people used these facts to state that global warming doesn't exist. The reasons? Since it's cold how can the planet becoming warmer?
The main error in the statement is a strange and inward vision of the world. United States doesn't occupy the entire Earth's surface. Global temperature UN data unfortunately tell us this: the 2013 was one of the hottest year in history. What is unacceptable is that some people try to disprove the existence of a global climatic phenomenon whose severity is often underestimated, especially when one of the worst droughts in the history of California has taken place.
An article from The Guardian proposes an alternative view on the Polar Vortex: according to the article this phenomenon supports the theory of global warming for the simple fact that global climate is not only changing thermally but is becoming strongly unstable causing various kinds of phenomena. In fact his phenomenon is caused from the rapid melting of polar sea ice, which replaces white, reflective ice with dark, absorbent open water. As a result, these region has heated up faster than other parts of the globe. And apparently winter storm isn't over. There is an 90 percent chance snow will fall in New York on March 2 and 3, according to the National Weather Service.
At the same time UK is facing its wettest winter since 1766. A total of 435 millimeters (17 inches) of rain was recorded across England and Wales. Authorities are still working to pump away water and Deloitte LLP has estimated damages for 1 billion pounds ($1.7 billion). And a political debate on the budget for the floods emergency started. Apparently these floods have shown an incorrect handling of the budget for the emergencies.
These are tragedies that speak for themselves. Climate change has many shades, some of these can be very dangerous and they hide behind the appearance. It's necessary to understand what are the consequences of climate change and fight them. It's important as fight the cause of all these phenomena: climate change. Here we come to the same but vital old story: we have to reduce pollution related to coal, oil and natural gas power plants, we have to explore new renewable energy technologies and I think that with the right measures bad weather won't do so many damages.
Facing these adversities can be difficult and disorganization just makes things worse. I think that prevent other episodes like those we lived is in the general interest and that why is essential to understand the cause of all this. How can we understand if cold is a consequence of global warming? It's paradoxical but the only way is to listen what science have to say. Unfortunately people don't see climate change very often, it's gradual, while Polar Vortex or flooding in UK are visible and perceptible and so they are priorities. Wouldn't it be smarter to fight the cause than the consequences? We have to look further than the evidence if we have to avoid these emergency situations in the future.
References from The Guardian and Bloomberg.
Photo from CNN.