Unsettling

I’m just going to post this link. It’s pretty disturbing — especially since there’s not much we can do about it. At least THIS year. But the future? Absolutely!

Of course the nay-sayers will … nay-say.

And unfortunately, as a result of their negativism (and infectious ignorance), the trends will most likely continue until there is nothing left but barren ground — which will play a major role in this country’s food supply. 

(But hey! Surely if we all get together and just pray for rain … 🙏💧)

America’s Megadrought

P.S. The articles focuses on the Western states, but as I pointed out, the entire U.S. –yea, the entire world– will feel the effects if remedial action isn’t put into place … soon!

24 thoughts on “Unsettling

  1. Yes, I’d read about this, sadly the nay-sayers are swayed by those who make their money by causing such disasters and they know they’ll be dead before it can affect them so don’t give a shiny shot in the dark about it. When it affects the businesses directly, affects those at the top I mean, then they’ll start hollering and hooting and complain about those who came before them and blame everyone else they possibly can, but never accept responsibility. They may say it’s God if desperate enough. It’s a very simple and effective article, so well posted. *nods*

    – Esme Cloud

    Liked by 4 people

  2. I disagree with the final slide that estimates human effect only on ‘more dry’ (is that better than ‘drier’?): the climate models should show human effect is also indicated by about that same percentage rise in the ‘more moist’ section. In other words, climate change results in greater extremes of both range and frequency of a shifting climate pattern and not just on one side of the scale.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Of course. But at this point in time, the major concern is drought and its accompaniments.

      Past weather episodes/disasters have shown that the extreme works both ways.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Every place is undergoing unique changes. Figuring out the patterns is one thing but predicting is another. And I think it’s important. What’s most striking about Brazil is that the rain forest is no longer large enough to create its own stable weather patterns. Although I haven’t heard anything specific, I predict significant forest fires will increase in frequency because of the loss of humidity. I seem to recall that if not for the rain forest producing its own weather, the area would be a savannah so that’s the direction I would look to see if the changes are heading in that direction. Of course, these are longitudinal changes and most of us aren’t going to be around to have to adjust personally (other than how various productions and the prices for them are affected). This is why I specifically mention concern about and suggestions for kids and grand kids; teaching them to be vigilant about these issues is a pretty good legacy in its own right and might pay significant dividends long after we’re gone.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. We’re in the middle of a drought here in Western NY. I know most people think of NY as urban but it’s rural here & outside of Buffalo, farm country. Looking out my window right now, I don’t see a cloud in the sky.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. 106 right now in Northern California. Of course, Vacahell, where I live, is ALWAYS hot, but this is definitely 10 degrees above normal. And everything is…dusty.

    I wonder how many tens of thousands of acres will burn.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. This issue will affect all kinds of food production but it’s a long term issue that I think is important for everyone to think about now. And that’s important because it’s easy to fall into a kind of despair and pine for things that have changed but cannot return. Sort of like getting older! The sooner one thinks about it, the better able it will be to plan and adapt and still reach important life goals.

    So in nutshell, here’s the thing regarding this kind of information in the OP:

    The amount of water (in various forms) in the world is stable. So. When there is a major drought over a significant land area, where’s the water? Where’s it going? Why does this matter not in terms of how ‘bad’ things are but in terms of, okay, here’s how I should change and plan.

    Well, as we all know, CO2 allows more heat to be trapped in the atmosphere. Hotter air, higher humidity. Higher humidity, greater precipitation. But not (necessarily) where it’s dry! It will happen downwind, so to speak. So. Where it precipitates out, lots of flooding if over land, but much of it is over water (sea level rise). Add fresh water from warmer air to the oceans where the precip occurs, oh look: add fuel for hurricanes, and so on. Is living on such a coast a good idea?

    Each 1 degree Celsius global average warming increases air energy through humidity by 8% (more volatility). Each degree means increased frequency of 1) drought in areas known for being susceptible to drought (which means drier, which means less water, more fires, higher risk to invest in land and houses and so on… a good place to put down roots?) versus places with increased rainfall in a shorter period of time more often in known precip areas. , which means dividing historical flood timing (5 year, 10 year, 50 year, 100 year, 500 year) by 5. A 20 year flood every 4 years by 2100. Should you buy that house beneath an earthen damn? Do you really want to live a dozen feet above a river level or on a flood plain?

    We’re on track for about 4 degree warming by 2100. We can all do this math.

    So. This is a good time to think ahead and make plans like where to live or where you think your kids or grandkids should live and suggest accordingly. Look for stable government, lots of fresh water. Good farm land. Divested economy. First world infrastructure based on 2100 needs – for education, health, economy in both manufacturing and services. Look at the maps. See where it’s smart.

    Changes are hard but they will happen. And we know what they are regarding climate. By 2050 this will be an electrified world. Oil and gas companies are dead men walking. Invest accordingly. And so on. But the future can be as bright as we are smart to prepare for it. We have the choices now and that’ cause for optimism.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. The idea that prayer will resolve this (which is one I hear regularly) makes me want to go back to bed. I suppose we have never been very good at sacrificing short-term gains in exchange for long-term survival. I fear it is too late to escape the consequences of our past inaction, and those with the will to make changes now seem to lack the support/power to bring them about.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Even worse than the lack of support is the outright denial that climate change is even happening! According to these folk, everyone should just continue to go along their merry way and stop worrying about what could happen. It’s just a big scare tactic on the part of the God-denying “scientists.” SMH

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Nan, for several years, the World Economic Forum has taken a poll on the greatest risks facing us, and Water shortage actually topped Climate Change, which makes the former issue worse. It may have flipped flopped, but it shows the concern over water. I encourage folks to read the book “Rancher, Farmer, Fisherman” by Miriam Horn, where she investigates the impact of both on these three professions, plus a River pilot and a Shrimper. Further, Cape Town, SA almost ran out of water. There is a town in Texas that did run out of water. And, the Saudis can now pray with sand not water, as Allah made their country oil rich, but water poor.

    In Steven Solomon’s book “Water,” one of the best history books I have ever read, he coined the phrase “Water is the new oil.” And, this was almost ten years ago. Those futuristic apocalyptic stories of desert settings won’t result from nuclear bombs, they will come from running out of sufficient fresh water. Now, that is a horror a show. Keith

    Liked by 2 people

    • “…(the) Water shortage actually topped Climate Change, which makes the former issue worse.”

      Funny way to say it. The range and frequency of the former – drought – is determined by the latter – climate change – so, although the affects of ‘drought’ (there are many terms to describe what’s really going on here) are certainly profound for those subject to it, the ‘solution’ starts with understanding what the ‘problem’ actually is. For example, calling the problem a water ‘shortage’ implies this is just a temporary lack. But a ‘shortage’ may in fact be a permanent alteration to historical weather patterns and so an actual ‘solution’ must include a recognition of this new reality. This alters the problem-solving approach… alters the focus and attention and money allocated to addressing the ‘problem’ to nothing more than stop gap (and very expensive) measures that only address symptoms of the problem. The ongoing problem is the burning of fossil fuels which we know perfectly well is toxic to a stable climate, so the very real problems of unprecedented drought CANNOT be adequately addressed by adding more water (as more and more Americans begin eyeing their northern neighbours as if getting that water is a ‘solution’. It’s not. Simple as that. It’s adapting to changing conditions including de-salinization of ocean water into fresh and completely altering how water is used and recycled (LA is doing some fabulous work on reclamation of ‘used’ water). This is why I keep saying that personal action amounts to almost nothing; what is need is a renewable and non-toxic energy system linked with infrastructure and economy (including farming) to make our physical demands on our environments sustainable.

      But yes, water issues – both drought and flooding – have immediate and devastating impact. Historical weather patterns are changing on a global scale. How we adjust on the macro scale determines what kind of future we are building on the micro scale.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Good add. What is also occurring is with droughts, water levels are falling beneath acceptable levels in fossil fuel and nuclear plants which heat the water to steam to turn the turbines and generate electricity. So, this is yet another reason we need to use renewables as they do not have to require water to create electricity (or frack for natural gas which uses a huge amount of water). Keith

        Liked by 1 person

        • renewables are not the answer either. They will be nowhere near enough. And solar panels (too often assembled by Uighur slave labor in reeducation camps) have their own environmental costs.

          The only solution is a politically fraught one: really doubling down on new generation nuclear.

          (Ducks his head and waits for the sh&*tstorm).

          Like

          • It’s a transition, so there will be need for oil and gas as it is fazed out except for oil-based products. But renewables – including smaller scale nuclear now being developed – will be the evolving solution. Once people realize the immediate financial benefits, demand will continue to rise but the fact of the matter is almost every large utility company has already decided renewables are the future and are investing accordingly.

            Rural areas are reaping a financial windfall from renewables. Large tracts of semi-arid desert are already turning back to high profit (low bush) intensive farming (improving soil moisture and loam) because of large scale solar panels. Add wind, tide, and hydrogen (all currently profitable) plus a few thermal projects and multiply it by Moore’s Law and you can clearly see where this is heading.

            To compete globally means we are going to have to keep our energy costs competitive and this simply cannot be done with oil and gas. Sure, in the short term there are all kinds of problems that seem large… just as there were for internal combustion engines at the turn of the last century. But what emerged 50 years later was unrecognizable by the naysayers busy with their horses. The same will be true, I will bet my life’s savings, as we switch over and build the necessary infrastructure – one problem/solution at a time – for renewables. So far – and just in these early days – my life’s savings are growing quite nicely. The writing is clearly on the wall. Oil, gas, and coal as widespread energy sources are dead men walking.

            Liked by 2 people

  8. The droughts, water & food shortages, uber-hot temperatures, severe storms and more can be laid at the doorstep of greedy corporate executives in every industry in the Western world, for they have refused to sacrifice a single penny in profit to make changes that would help counter man-made climate change. It’s time to tell them, especially those in the fossil fuel industry, to sit down and shut up while we listen to the advice of the climate scientists. Otherwise, our great-grandchildren will inherit a dying planet and it will be too late for them to fix it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It’s EVERYONE. Not only greedy corporate executives buy 6,000 pound trucks that they NEED to drive to the corner store. Not only greedy corporate executives NEED 3,000 square foot houses 45 miles from work because “I wanna live in the (fire prone) country.” It’s not only greedy corporate executives who vote for the Donald Trumps of the world.

      Liked by 3 people

      • You are so right, Brian! It’s my neighbor who drives to the mailbox at the top of our street, and all those people who must keep their heat turned up in the winter and never bother to turn off a light. We are all guilty to some extent, but the fossil fuel industry and other major industries have bought and paid for members of Congress to vote against any sort of regulations, and THAT is the bigger problem, I think. Sigh.

        Liked by 1 person

  9. jill: I don’t want to deny that entrenched special interests are the biggest problem. But it’s a vicious circle. These same corporations can easily rouse up Heartland Americans when their is a threat to their (our) Gawd-given “standard of living”. Elites are certainly more to blame. But heck, I drive to much, and my little car is no Prius. I do eat meat. I am an American. My only mitigating factor is the mediocre genetic line comes to the end with our generation. Not breeding more Americans is pretty good from an environmental perspective!

    Like

    • Elites? Seriously?

      Again, round up 100,000 of your closest friends, get busy finding nuts and berries and do it in a sustainable way, and you will not make one single dent in what causes climate change or water usage. If truth be told, you and your friends would be far more likely to leave wide swaths of once productive land behind that will take centuries to become productive again.

      Kill off all the ‘elites’ and you’ll find that not one dent has been made altering the climate change trajectory. Stop flushing every toilet. Turn off every light. By all means collapse the integrated world and see if any real solutions regarding some measurable improvement to climate change have been achieved versus the massive problems to real people in real life you’ve created.

      By all means stop reproducing. See what longitudinal affect this has on the well being of the global population and the environments in which they live.

      This loathsome kumbaya approach is both irresponsible and completely misguided in almost every conceivable way from achieving lasting and sustainable solutions to real problems in real life… except, I suppose, in some measure of signaling to like-minded ideologues fed a steady diet of anti-liberal lies since the cradle in today’s acceptable ‘virtue’ selfies.

      Liked by 1 person

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