June 29, 2013

Saturday Evening Post: 13 Minutes With Paul Beckwith

This is the single best climate change talk I've found so far, and Paul Beckwith, of the University of Ottawa, delivers this mini-seminar in the open air, with no notes, and nary a sip from that styrofoam cup he holds in his left hand.  He has a nice, relaxed, unpretentious and friendly way of talking about the end of life as we've known it.

It's 97 degrees here in Marin County this afternoon, as it was yesterday, and the forecast indicates that's about where the temperature will be until next Wednesday.  That's a long hot spell for the Bay Area.  I'm curious whether the jet stream phenomenon to which Paul refers, the "waviness" of its meridional movement instead of the straighter path from west to east to which modern civilization had become accustomed until, you know, recently...might have something to do with this "stuck" pattern.  We had what amounted to a winter storm about 5 days ago - cold, blowy rain.  Makes you wonder - what could be on the other side of the next sinusoidal wave to move through!

Just a guess, but I would surmise that the loss of the northern hemisphere's "air conditioner," the Arctic sea ice during the summer months, will usher in a more or less permanent era of such weirdness and unpredictability. 

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