Sunday, October 30, 2022

People think about temperature, but the biggest effect we are now getting from climate change is changing rainfall patterns.

Seems like the biggest problem, we now face from climate change is the changing rainfall patterns; rather than temperature change.

Yes, the globe is warming up and that is what's behind the rest of the problem. The earth, as a whole, has only warmed up slightly so far; like they say 1.5 degrees Celsius. That doesn't seem like much, to feel, but it can bring big changes in things like the Jet Stream pattern which effects rainfall patterns in various regions.

Some areas are suffering severe drought while other areas have more rainfall than normal. That is the big problem we are facing now; from what I gather at least.

Yes, the news does talk about big heatwaves and yes they are getting worse in certain areas, but I think the main worldwide problem, so far, is the changing rainfall patterns.

Yes, the Arctic is heating faster than the rest of the planet. The effects are uneven, but temperature change, on most of the planet, is subtle; at least subtle to our sense of how warm, or cold we feel. Temperature change is more subtle in areas where most people live as not that many people live in the Arctic. Where most people live is where perceptions are forged.

There are longterm effects of climate change, but short term day to day and even year to year changes in weather speak louder as drivers of common perception. One subtle difference is that the growing season tends to be getting longer, in many regions, as the decades go by. Scientists are able to chart that, but the average person can become accustomed to that; especially if they aren't farmers.

We've seen lots of retreat of mid latitude glaciers and even some near the poles; such as in Greenland and the Arctic Ocean.

Another problem, that compounds this situation more, is growing population and growing demand for things like fresh water. Just as some agricultural areas, like California, are getting dryer, more and more mouths are being born that need to be fed.

Another problem with perception, in USA, is that the 1.5 figure for warming since industrial revolution is given in Celsius. Most Americans use Fahrenheit scale; unless they are scientists. In Fahrenheit, it's 2.7 degrees. Slightly larger number. Still subtle when we go outside and feel the temperature. The temperature we feel varies much more widely from day to day, year to year. That's nothing new and perception, rather than concepts, seems to drive a lot of common opinion; at least Republican opinion.

I also think if it was just the climate change we have had so far, by itself, it wouldn't be as serious a problem. Problem is we also face growing population and growing demand for things like energy and food. World carbon emissions continue to rise as demand for energy continues to grow. This is likely to create more of a destabilizing effect on world civilization. It's civilization that people, including me, care about because we are humans.

Yes, we can reduce carbon footprint, but it gets harder with ever more mouths to feed, cars on the road and people needing jobs that are still in the traditional sectors of world economies.

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