Read this The Science sentence with me and see if you enjoy it as much as I did: “Long before climate change, California’s Great Flood of 1862 stretched up to 300 miles long and 60 miles across.” (Thanks to our own Kent Clizbe for turning this gem up.)
It seems, Experts tell us, noahic “massive statewide floods have occurred every century or two in California over the past millennia”.
But now, under climate change, they might occur again!
Only if they do occur again, they can now be blamed on climate change, the cause of all evil—including childhood obesity. We now live under climate change, but, back then, the climate was, we infer, entirely static, unchanged and unchangeable.
Yet even if you are sure that we used to live in a climatic Eden, and are now in a unrelieved hothouse, all because of climate change, it opens an important new unsolved scientific problem.
What we can blame the old floods on?
Pre-climate change? Which is sort of like pre-diabetes? White supremacy? Homophobia?
Keep the last one in mind as we go through the rest of The Science. Before we get to that, let me remind you of three things:
2. Climate attributions studies can’t be trusted. Quoting moi: “In order to attribute individual weather events to humankind, scientists need a perfect model of the climate. They do not have this. Therefore, claims that we are responsible for any particular weather event are at best overconfident, if not plain wrong.”
3. The IPCC Sees What Isn’t There. Quoting the same suave guy: “There are multiple layers of uncertainty. There is the uncertainty in the events themselves, the uncertainty that arises out of the fact that the climate models used in these studies are imperfect, the uncertainty that arises from the statistical models used to reach the final conclusions, and finally the fact that any correlations between models and reality are weak and inconclusive.”
Now let’s quote somebody with something worth hearing, a commenter at the link above (with my paragraphifications):
How quickly we forget. In 1969 SoCal saw two “500 year storms” back to back. There was actually water flowing in the Ventura River and the Santa Clara River. Where the City of Oxnard recently has approved shopping centers, office buildings and hundreds of condos was under 6 feet of water at the peak and it took at least a couple of weeks for the water to recede to the point where slow travel in the area was possible.
The Saticoy bridge washed out and for a while I thought the newly installed 101 bridge would follow suit. Of course, 101 was closed north of Ventura as the Ventura River washed over the highway. The Santa Clara River plain that is mostly farmland was flooded. Houses that were built in the river flood plain were flooded. They were built because “There hasn’t been a flood here in over 60 years.”
There was lots of litigation over various representations that had been made. If one considers that tree ring study is indicative of weather patterns, this area some centuries ago experienced a 500 year drought. There is no reason not to believe that we just might be in the beginning stages of another 500 year drought in the area.
Ah, how little things change. The year of our Lord 19 and 69 was when the world suffered global cooling. Then somebody remembered to flip the thermostat’s oh-en-oh-eff-eff switch to the oh-en position, and we’ve been fretting about how, one day, it’s coming, soon, it’ll get here, don’t worry, you can feel it, we’ll suffer global warming.
Here comes the homophobic p-value challenge!
Our authors, who have done a correlation study, claim that certain trace gasses, minuscule atmospheric components, correlate with an increased chance of the kind of flood that used to be caused by something other than climate change but which will now be caused by climate change, and that climate change correlates with these minuscule-proportioned trace gases. Got it?
All right, well, there are certain other things, much more visible things than these dinky little trace gasses. Something else that has been increasing like congresscreatures to a lobbyist’s new office. Something that might have caused the old great floods, when the cause couldn’t have been climate change, but which old causes might not have gone away at all, and indeed might have increased in strength. And that is the increase in the sin-of-Pride flags swelling across the Golden State.
So. I want you to do a wee p-value analysis on the increase in sin-of-Pride flags and California floods (or temperature). And when that p turns out to be wee, and likely weer than it does in the same analysis but applied to trace gases, explain to us how the wee p indicates cause in one instance but not the other.
In spite of great rollicking humor of this request, it is in earnest. Try it. You might learn something.
Buy my new book and learn to argue against the regime: Everything You Believe Is Wrong.