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Tags climate change , global warming , united nations

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Old 13th April 2011, 09:07 AM   #1
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50 million climate change refugees by 2010

I haven't really participated in the global warming topics here, as I don't know much about it. A forum search for this phrase turned up empty. Anyway, I thought that this seemed a little alarmist at the time, and it apparently hasn't come to fruition. Can someone enlighten me? Have islands disappeared yet? Was this an official United Nations stance?

http://maps.grida.no/go/graphic/fift...fugees-by-2010

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Fifty million climate refugees by 2010. Today we find a world of asymmetric development, unsustainable natural resource use, and continued rural and urban poverty. There is general agreement about the current global environmental and development crisis. It is also known that the consequences of these global changes have the most devastating impacts on the poorest, who historically have had limited entitlements and opportunities for growth.
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Old 13th April 2011, 04:05 PM   #2
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It's not that global warming isn't happening, or that it won't produce undesirable effects. It's that somewhere when that news story was first published, someone chose the worst possible scenario because, as they say in the drive-by media, "if it bleeds, it leads".

It's good that AGW hasn't produced an apocalypse yet. That doesn't mean it isn't there, media hysteria (or that of PACs and NGOs) notwithstanding.
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Old 13th April 2011, 04:18 PM   #3
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We have forgotten Pakistan, China and Australia?
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Old 13th April 2011, 05:28 PM   #4
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Alarmist predictions are regular. None come to fruition. Yet they unashamedly keep trolling them out to scare little children and the weak of mind.
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Old 13th April 2011, 08:36 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by A.A. Alfie View Post
Alarmist predictions are regular. None come to fruition. Yet they unashamedly keep trolling them out to scare little children and the weak of mind.
So the 10 million refugees from the floods in Pakistan dont count? Or the 15 million plus in China facing starvation conditions due to famine dont count?
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Old 13th April 2011, 08:42 PM   #6
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Why have the floods and food shortages occured? And how many refugees are there?

btw. We were told just a few years ago that it would not rain in Australia sufficiently to ever fill our dams again. Guess what?

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Old 13th April 2011, 09:55 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by A.A. Alfie View Post
Why have the floods and food shortages occured? And how many refugees are there?

btw. We were told just a few years ago that it would not rain in Australia sufficiently to ever fill our dams again. Guess what?
http://www.internationalskeptics.com...ad.php?t=39521

Are you drinking recycled sewer water yet?
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Old 13th April 2011, 11:30 PM   #8
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I'm not sure what your link is supposed to mean or allude to?

We have had heaps of rain lately; the dams are full or filling across the eastern states. So much for doomsday predictions of eternal droughts.
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Old 14th April 2011, 07:13 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by Sword_Of_Truth View Post
It's not that global warming isn't happening, or that it won't produce undesirable effects. It's that somewhere when that news story was first published, someone chose the worst possible scenario because, as they say in the drive-by media, "if it bleeds, it leads".
I don't think this even qualifies as media or headlines. It looks like it's just UN internal policy stuff. Am I wrong?

http://maps.grida.no/go/collection/i...or-development

ETA - That's why I posted it here, and not science / technology. I'm interested in the political aspects of such a policy. Are the residents of Tuvalu getting exit visas to New Zealand or someplace? That sort of thing.


ETA2 - If MG1962 has sources for claims on China, Pakistan and Australia, I'd appreciate it and read them.

Last edited by carlitos; 14th April 2011 at 07:18 AM.
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Old 14th April 2011, 12:04 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by carlitos View Post
I don't think this even qualifies as media or headlines. It looks like it's just UN internal policy stuff. Am I wrong?
the thinking of the media and various PACs and NGOs is similar for similar reasons. One doesn't rack up high ratings, or votes, donations and funding by telling people only a few minor bad things could happen. You always go with your worst case scenario.
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Old 14th April 2011, 12:55 PM   #11
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I compare it to Y2K. There's no question that there was a Y2K problem, however some of the more dire predictions (planes falling out of the sky, for example) were a little out there.
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Old 14th April 2011, 10:24 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by A.A. Alfie View Post
Alarmist predictions are regular. None come to fruition. Yet they unashamedly keep trolling them out to scare little children and the weak of mind.
and alarmist claims of alarmist predictions are regular too..

when you say "btw. We were told just a few years ago that it would not rain in Australia sufficiently to ever fill our dams again. Guess what?"

who said this?

Current Drought/flood cycles in australia are not related to global warming, they are related to el Nino effects...we are going to have more floods, and droughts, and floods....

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/El_Ni%C...rn_Oscillation

Wacko predictions are a problem alfie but so are people who try to make some case that something is demonstrated when they don't happen other than wacko predictors are wacko.
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Old 15th April 2011, 12:00 AM   #13
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So we should listen to whacko predictons or not? I'm a bit confused.

My understanding of the point of the OP was that there are these extreme predictions and they never seem to come true. What would be good would be a list of predictions (no matter how short ) of accurate predictions around AGW.
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Old 15th April 2011, 06:11 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by A.A. Alfie View Post
My understanding of the point of the OP was that there are these extreme predictions and they never seem to come true.
Let me clarify. This was predicted by the relevant UN agency. The OP asks whether the UN is making policy based on the assumption that this prediction has / will come true. Look at the map - is the UN relocating islanders? Moving people out of sub-saharan Africa? Etc. I would never have posted that "these extreme predictions never come true."

Oh, great. A few conservative blogs picked this up, and now the graphic is down the memory hole. My original link is now dead, and a search comes up empty.

http://maps.grida.no/index.cfm?event...fugees+by+2010
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Old 15th April 2011, 06:26 AM   #15
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The map still shows up when you search the UNEP/GRID site, but when you click the link it's not there.

http://www.grida.no/search.aspx?q=cl...g&cof=FORID:11

At the bottom of this page, they note that "some studies are predicting 150 million climate refugees by 2050." Hmm.

...and I really don't see how this topic got moved to "social issues and current events" - isn't UN policy international politics?
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Old 15th April 2011, 06:27 AM   #16
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http://www.timelesstuvalu.com/

If they are relocating Islanders, someone had better tell their tourism people to send away the tourists.

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Old 15th April 2011, 09:21 AM   #17
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You need to be very careful of these predictions, because they are based on many, many different extrapolations (including the fact that people's behavior and technology change far faster than these effects). We currently deal with large displacements of people over short term problems (much more difficult than long term gradual shifts) such as the flooding and food problems mentioned.

An example of this is the 1894 article in the London Times that argued that cities would be unlivable by 1950 because there would be so much horse crap in the streets (as in many feet deep). In general, long term extrapolatory predictions are almost always wrong, because people's actions and social structures and technologies are very flexible.
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Old 15th April 2011, 10:28 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by jayh View Post
You need to be very careful of these predictions, because they are based on many, many different extrapolations (including the fact that people's behavior and technology change far faster than these effects). We currently deal with large displacements of people over short term problems (much more difficult than long term gradual shifts) such as the flooding and food problems mentioned.

An example of this is the 1894 article in the London Times that argued that cities would be unlivable by 1950 because there would be so much horse crap in the streets (as in many feet deep). In general, long term extrapolatory predictions are almost always wrong, because people's actions and social structures and technologies are very flexible.
Thanks. Do you have a cite for the London Times thing? This post is the #1 google result.

Ah - found this. http://www.thefreemanonline.org/colu...risis-of-1894/

Last edited by carlitos; 15th April 2011 at 11:02 AM.
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Old 15th April 2011, 02:04 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by MG1962 View Post
So the 10 million refugees from the floods in Pakistan dont count? Or the 15 million plus in China facing starvation conditions due to famine dont count?
how many of these are due to Global Warming?
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Old 15th April 2011, 03:49 PM   #20
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Here's the 2005 paper this is based on -

Environmental Refugees: an emergent security issue

Note that it states that the last assessment, in 1995, already calculated an estimated 25 million climate refugees -

As far back as 1995 (latest date for a comprehensive assessment), these
environmental refugees totalled at least 25 million people, compared with 27 million
traditional refugees (people fleeing political oppression, religious persecution and
ethnic troubles). The environmental refugees total could well double between 1995
and 2010


It was not a "global warming" paper other than to state that it will get worse when it's effect become apparent.

Reading the paper, I'd say the OP is wrong. The prediction has almost certainly come true.
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Old 15th April 2011, 04:09 PM   #21
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I'm confused: Isn't it a bit late to predict how many climate change refugees we'll have in 2010?
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Old 15th April 2011, 04:15 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
I'm confused: Isn't it a bit late to predict how many climate change refugees we'll have in 2010?
???

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Here's the 2005 paper
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Old 15th April 2011, 04:37 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by icerat View Post
Here's the 2005 paper this is based on -

Environmental Refugees: an emergent security issue

Note that it states that the last assessment, in 1995, already calculated an estimated 25 million climate refugees -

As far back as 1995 (latest date for a comprehensive assessment), these
environmental refugees totalled at least 25 million people, compared with 27 million
traditional refugees (people fleeing political oppression, religious persecution and
ethnic troubles). The environmental refugees total could well double between 1995
and 2010


It was not a "global warming" paper other than to state that it will get worse when it's effect become apparent.

Reading the paper, I'd say the OP is wrong. The prediction has almost certainly come true.
You are saying that "environmental" refugees are the same as "climate change refugees"?

They are quite different: Unless of course one wrongly (mischeviously, dishonestly?) ascribes all droughts, floods, poverty, over population, war etc to climate change.

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Old 15th April 2011, 04:55 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by A.A. Alfie View Post
You are saying that "environmental" refugees are the same as "climate change refugees"?
Not entirely, but if you take "climate change" to mean "changes in the climate", then it would cover the vast majority of environmental refugees, yes.

Are all relevant "changes in the climate" driven by AGW? No.
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Old 15th April 2011, 04:56 PM   #25
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You are correct, the answer is "No".
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Old 15th April 2011, 05:27 PM   #26
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Originally Posted by A.A. Alfie View Post
You are correct, the answer is "No".
Nice to have your approval.

The original page and image doesn't attribute it to AGW either.

The OP is the one implying it's a "global warming" claim, I'm guessing because some idiots somewhere else have been keeping straw suppliers busy.
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Old 15th April 2011, 05:39 PM   #27
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Sorry dude, it seems we were coming from the same place. My bad.
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Old 15th April 2011, 07:17 PM   #28
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Originally Posted by icerat View Post
Nice to have your approval.

The original page and image doesn't attribute it to AGW either.

The OP is the one implying it's a "global warming" claim, I'm guessing because some idiots somewhere else have been keeping straw suppliers busy.
I'm using the wayback machine to try and find the original paper, with no luck. One, the obvious question would be why these guys hid the paper on the very day that conservative bloggers found it. Two, what non-AGW "climate change" is causing these refugees. If not AGW, what is causing ocean rises, desertification and drought? If you can post a link or two, I will read and comment. Thanks.
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Old 15th April 2011, 07:28 PM   #29
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The ocean rise to date is diddle, like one cm.?

There have been some low lands evacuated, but the problem was that the land/island was sinking. So no GW involved.
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Old 15th April 2011, 07:33 PM   #30
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Originally Posted by carlitos View Post
I'm using the wayback machine to try and find the original paper, with no luck. One, the obvious question would be why these guys hid the paper on the very day that conservative bloggers found it. Two, what non-AGW "climate change" is causing these refugees. If not AGW, what is causing ocean rises, desertification and drought? If you can post a link or two, I will read and comment. Thanks.
I posted a link to the waybackmachine copy of the page, and to the missing original image, as well as a copy to the paper that the web page and image were based on.

The paper states in it's intro -

There is a new phenomenon in the global arena: environmental refugees. These are people who can no longer gain a secure livelihood in their homelands because of drought, soil erosion, desertification, deforestation and other environmental problems

While these issues can arise from climate change caused by AGW, they can also arise from other issues, including natural variability, farming practices, water management etc etc.

The paper mentions (briefly) that if AGW takes hold it will get worse, but the paper is not about AGW and does not base it's predictions of a doubling of climate refugees by 2010 on AGW. The "doubling" (ie to 50 million) only required an average of 1.7 million climate affected refugees per year, and as has been pointed out, there were at least 10 million such refugees in Pakistan and 15.2 million in China last year alone.
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Old 15th April 2011, 08:25 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by icerat View Post
I posted a link to the waybackmachine copy of the page, and to the missing original image, as well as a copy to the paper that the web page and image were based on.

The paper states in it's intro -

There is a new phenomenon in the global arena: environmental refugees. These are people who can no longer gain a secure livelihood in their homelands because of drought, soil erosion, desertification, deforestation and other environmental problems
Ah. I see - you linked the page, but not the paper.

Respectfully, can one credibly claim that environmental refugees are a "new phenomenon?" That's absurd.

Quote:
While these issues can arise from climate change caused by AGW, they can also arise from other issues, including natural variability, farming practices, water management etc etc.
Gotcha.

Quote:
The paper mentions (briefly) that if AGW takes hold it will get worse
It's like the last ever New York Times headline - "world ends; women, minorities hardest hit."

Quote:
, but the paper is not about AGW and does not base it's predictions of a doubling of climate refugees by 2010 on AGW. The "doubling" (ie to 50 million) only required an average of 1.7 million climate affected refugees per year, and as has been pointed out, there were at least 10 million such refugees in Pakistan and 15.2 million in China last year alone.
Right. Short-term population shifts due to disasters are a huge deal, and the UN should be working on this. Flooding has been happening since before the Gilgamesh was written, and "climate change" is what drove man out of Africa 70,000 years ago, right? Surely this flooding isn't being claimed to be due to AGW?
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Old 15th April 2011, 08:38 PM   #32
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What if Guam flips over?
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Old 15th April 2011, 08:42 PM   #33
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Originally Posted by carlitos View Post
Ah. I see - you linked the page, but not the paper.
The paper I linked to earlier

Quote:
Respectfully, can one credibly claim that environmental refugees are a "new phenomenon?" That's absurd.
I thought the same initially, but if you put the emphasis on "global" then they might have a point.

Quote:
Surely this flooding isn't being claimed to be due to AGW?
Well, there is some evidence to suggest AGW might be influencing monsoons, but that's really a different discussion.

What this thread is really about is that AGW denialists are sprouting this (now removed) UNEP page as a failed over the top AGW prediction. Reviewing the actual page and the paper it's based on shows it wasn't an AGW prediction at all, and didn't fail either.
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Old 15th April 2011, 09:27 PM   #34
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Originally Posted by icerat View Post
Ah, sorry. Will read tomorrow.
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Old 15th April 2011, 10:00 PM   #35
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Originally Posted by Cleon View Post
I compare it to Y2K. There's no question that there was a Y2K problem, however some of the more dire predictions (planes falling out of the sky, for example) were a little out there.
Planes falling out of the sky were really UP there dontcha think?
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Old 15th April 2011, 10:35 PM   #36
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Originally Posted by carlitos View Post
Respectfully, can one credibly claim that environmental refugees are a "new phenomenon?" That's absurd.
I think the transportation technology that facilitates large scale migration in response to environmental distress is relatively new. In the past they would have died in place or been referred to as "conquerors" not refugees.
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Old 16th April 2011, 05:43 PM   #37
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There is the problem that climate changes anyhow. Droughts, floods, etc are as old as humans. People always tend to move from where conditions are worse to where they are better, but this is one of the good things about humans as a species. We dynamically optmize our situation.

Now there seems to be a tendency to use the loaded word 'refugees' because of its apocalyptic connotations. There is often a kind of dishonesty, too, in selection bias. Negative things as tallied, wherever possible to AGW, positive changes are not. There is nothing sacred about the current CO2 levels or the current climate. Nature is much more neutral, every change has some advantages and some disadvantages.
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Old 17th April 2011, 10:14 PM   #38
Nosi
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The American Southwest is and will be hit hard by climate change. We are not however turning into "climate refugees" We are turning into "tech refugees". We are turning our bodies into little water bags via toilet-to-tap technology as things get drier and more people move in. This technology makes those extra people assets.
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Old 17th April 2011, 10:25 PM   #39
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Originally Posted by A.A. Alfie View Post
I'm not sure what your link is supposed to mean or allude to?

We have had heaps of rain lately; the dams are full or filling across the eastern states. So much for doomsday predictions of eternal droughts.
Meanwhile, Oklahoma is experiencing the worst drought we've had since before the dust bowl. It usually rains every day for weeks in March and April, all my life. It hasn't rained here now in almost 5 months. Winter had a freak blizzard, but for over half the winter we had spring and sometimes summer temperatures. I love winter and feel robbed myself.

Global Warming isn't going to cause mass dry deserts, it's going to effect extremes in weather, in all areas of climate. And we're seeing unusual weather all over the place. While this isn't evidence to base an argument on, it's reason to let you know not to offer anecdotes like that as if it's an argument either way.
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Old 18th April 2011, 12:36 AM   #40
Warmer1
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Originally Posted by Nosi View Post
The American Southwest is and will be hit hard by climate change.
Studies of tree ring growth of the old Bristle-cone pine trees indicates that we just experienced an abnormally wet period in the SW and things may be returning to normal drier conditions. The article was in an issue of National Geographic which has the Black Pharaohs on the cover. Sorry that I don't have links to the study.

As mentioned climate models also predict a drier SW in the future.

Lake Mead is predicted to rise around 20 feet this season due to a larger than average snow pack and resultant runoff. At least that's a temporary relief.
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