26 Dec '11, 6pm

Politics blocks scientists from explaining why this year’s weather was record bad

A typical year in the U.S. includes three to four extreme weather events that do more than $1 billion in damage, but 2011 featured 12 of them. Add in the slightly-less-expensive extreme weather we experienced, and the total price tag is north of $50 billion. Scientists say they now have the tools to determine how climate is influencing these extreme weather events, which sounds like a good idea. I mean, if we're tearing the planet apart with our carbon emissions, isn't that something that should be as important to monitor as, say, the activities of Al Qaeda? Except the political climate means there isn't federal funding available for this kind of research, says a piece by Justin Gillis in the New York Times : This year, when the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration tried to push through a reorganization that would have provided better climate forecasts to busine...

Full article: http://www.grist.org/list/2011-12-26-politics-blocks-scie...

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