Lauren Morello and ClimateWire report that new analysis shows there is “virtually no explanation other than climate change” for extreme heat events including last year’s scorching weather in Texas and Oklahoma, via Scientific American:
Yes, it really is that hot.
Extreme summer heat — like the sizzling temperatures that hit Texas and Oklahoma last year and Moscow in 2010 — occurs far more frequently now than it did 30 years ago, according to a new study from NASA climatologist James Hansen.
Between 1951 and 1980, just 0.2 percent of Earth’s land areas experienced that kind of scorching summer, on average. Today, that number has soared to 10 percent, according to Hansen’s statistical analysis of global temperature data. And the likely cause is man-made climate change.
“We can state, with a high degree of confidence, that extreme anomalies such as those in Texas and Oklahoma in 2011 and Moscow in 2010 were a consequence of global warming because their likelihood in the absence of global warming was exceedingly small,” Hansen and his co-authors wrote in a study that will be published this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
The scientist put it more bluntly in an op-ed in yesterday’s Washington Post: “The future is now. And it is hot.”…
[continues at Scientific American]