A Brief Absence

You may have noticed (and then again, maybe you didn’t 😉), but I’ve been off-line for the past few days. We experienced an unusual (for this area) snow storm over the past few days. It started Sunday as something light, which is not unusual for the area, but then, it kept coming! We ended up with about 8″ overall. (Yes, I know. It’s nothing like what happens in other parts of the country, but …)

Anyway, we lost power on Monday evening. Lucky for us, this area has natural gas and even luckier, the original owners of this house had installed a gas heating stove in the family room so we were able to stay comparatively warm. Also we had warm water for showers … but boy-of-boy was the bathroom cold!!

To keep some of the more perishable stuff, we put snow into an ice chest. Ordinarily, we would have fired up the generator, but wouldn’t you know it? It wouldn’t start. (That is most definitely something we’re going to correct!)

Naturally, without power, there was no way to go online OR to recharge our phones! Fortunately, we had car chargers so we could keep them at least somewhat operable. But wouldn’t you know it? Phone service was practically nil … one bar or less. *sigh*

Anyway, the power finally came back on last night so life is returning to normal. But we learned a few things from this experience. Even though my other-half has lived by the Boy Scout motto (Be Prepared) for many years, there were a few things we will need to look into for future reference. Especially since we live in an area (West Coast) that could be massively affected by a major (9+) earthquake.

I suppose if I were a believer, I’d be thanking some invisible being right now. As it is, I just accept this whole event as part of “life.” Calamities can and do happen to all of us. How we make it through them (physically and mentally) is up to us. It’s my belief that relying on ourselves and the strengths of other human beings will always be what counts in the long run.

Glad to be back! 😍

P.S. I categorized this post as “Climate Change” for a reason. I’ll leave it to each of you to agree or disagree with my decision.

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Global Warming or Ice Age?

A blogger that I follow has been writing several posts discounting climate change/global warming. According to his sources, we are instead experiencing a Grand Solar Minimum, which would bring on cooler temperatures (ice age) rather than warmer. He notes the recent climate events (unusual snow and cold) on the West Coast, and the (relatively unpublicized) ice accumulation in Greenland and at the South Pole as being counter-intuitive to global warming.

I was intrigued by his perspective and did a bit of research …


According to NASA, every 11 years or so, sunspots fade away, bringing a period of relative calm known as a “solar minimum.” It’s considered a regular part of the sunspot cycle.

During the late 17th century, an analysis of historic sunspot observations shows the solar activity cycle was interrupted and the sun appeared without sunspots most of the time. The event was called the Maunder Minimum.

According to this article

The Maunder Minimum falls within the climatically cooler period of the “Little Ice Age”, during which temperatures were particularly low over continents in the Northern hemisphere (especially in winter). It has long been suspected that the low solar activity during the Maunder Minimum was one of the causes of the Little Ice Age, although other factors like a small drop in greenhouse gas concentrations around 1600 and strong volcanic eruptions during that time likely played a role as well.

In one study, it is said that a new Maunder Minimum would lead to a cooling of 0.3°C in the year 2100, depending on assumptions about future emissions. However, physicists believe “a 21st-century Maunder Minimum would only slightly diminish future warming. Moreover, it would be only a temporary effect since all known grand solar minima have only lasted for a few decades.”

Further, the article states …

(E)ven if one multiplied the solar effects by a huge factor of 5 (which is unrealistic), no absolute cooling would take place (the temperatures would be temporarily cooler than the base scenario, but the trends would still be warming).

As regards the increased ice at the South Pole and its effect on climate change, this article offers some perspective … and addresses the question of how Antarctica can be gaining ice mass in a warming world. (Hint: “More snow accumulation is, counterintuitively, a sign of global warming; more precipitation happens when there is more moisture in the air, and more moisture in the air is a product of higher temperatures.”)


One final word. This blogger also mentions that we’re about to be subjected to the planet flipping its magnetic poles (gasp!). While it is a possibility, this article explains why it’s not something to be concerned about.

Changing of the Climate

From this article in The Guardian …

It will be bad for humans, but catastrophic for Earth’s other inhabitants. Arctic ice loss threatens polar bears, droughts imperil monarch butterflies, and koala habitats are being destroyed by bush fires. In all, about a sixth of all species now face extinction, say scientists, although in the end no creature or plant will be safe. “Even the most resilient species will inevitably fall victim as extreme stresses drive ecosystems to collapse,” said Giovanni Strona of Europe’s Joint Research Centre in a report last week on climate change. (Emphasis added)

Unfortunately (too) many limit their thinking to the effects climate change will have on humans. They fail/refuse to consider that all life on earth will be affected.

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Why do so many deny climate change? I tend to think it’s because the changes are not immediately obvious so they tell themselves it’s no big deal. It’s all part of earth’s cycles and everything will balance out in the long run. Or they are inclined to attribute everything to “natural causes.” Some may even say it’s the brain child of some neurotic scientists. Many (usually the culprits) deny it because they want to ensure the dollars continue to flow into their bank account.

(And then there’s the conspiracy followers who are convinced the “government” is behind it all.)

Another reason I think people “pooh-pooh” climate change is because it happens gradually. Yes, they know about the forest fires, the floods, the hurricanes, the unseasonable snowstorms … but they tend to see these events as separate occurrences. In other words, they don’t get the connection.

But the young children growing up today ARE going to get the connection as they experience the very real and dramatic changes. And regrettably, because the generations before them chose to ignore the warnings, they are the ones who will feel the full effects.

  • They will experience dramatic and life-changing weather events.
  • They will see the death of plant and animal species.
  • They will suffer from droughts and/or lack of clean water.
  • They will die from heat-related diseases.
  • They will have less food to put on their tables.
  • They will be forced to move due to persistent flooding.

And this just touches the surface of the changes they will endure.

If you are reading this and shaking your head because you think it’s just people’s overactive imaginations, then I suggest you type in “Consequences of Climate Change” into your favorite browser and take the time to read what multiple informed sources have to say.

If you are still not convinced, all I can say is I hope you will (1) be dead and buried before the full effects set in, or (2) have a good explanation when your children begin to suffer as a result of your refusal to accept the findings of people much smarter than you.

Eating Ourselves to Extinction

Following are excerpts from a disturbing article in The Guardian:

Humanity has wiped out 60% of mammals, birds, fish and reptiles since 1970, leading the world’s foremost experts to warn that the annihilation of wildlife is now an emergency that threatens civilisation.

… the vast and growing consumption of food and resources by the global population is destroying the web of life, billions of years in the making, upon which human society ultimately depends for clean air, water and everything else.

Many scientists believe the world has begun a sixth mass extinction, the first to be caused by a species – Homo sapiens.

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Also  … while many of us know the migrant caravan from So. America is due to violence, killings, and organized crime within those countries, another article in The Guardian points out it also has to do with climate change. According to Robert Albro, a researcher at the Center for Latin American and Latino Studies at American University: “The main reason people are moving is because they don’t have anything to eat.”

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Sobering thoughts.  Yet those who could do something to alter our course … choose to do nothing.