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3292 clicks; posted to Video » on 01 Nov 2012 at 11:50 PM (2 years ago) | | share: more»
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SandyTL Time-Lapse of Sandy Hitting NYC
So, friends in the US, here we are a week after Sandy. Many of you saw what I witnessed as it happened a week ago, and now, more than 5 million people have seen my view durring the storm... So, while I have your attention, let me just take a moment of your time to reflect on what has happened in the context of climate change.. Two years ago, we had record snowfall across much of North America. Virtually every week in the northeast, we had 6" or more of snow for 3 months straight. In 35 years on this planet, this was a first for me. Last year we had Irene. while NYC was not so heavily affected, may I remind you that flooding in VT was so bad that entire regions were completely cut off from the outside world due to all access roads being completely washed away. These areas were accessible by helicopter only for weeks. We also had the non winter, with record low snow in much of the country. We had a handfull of days in which we dropped below freezing in the northeast. This past summer, 90% of counties in this country were in drought emergencies, resulting in failed crops and sharp increases in food prices. 3,215 record high temperatures were recorded in the US. Now Sandy.. literally a Snowreastercane.. It is now evident that a high pressure system that has been sitting over Greenland all summer, and generating melting across the entire island for the first time in human history, was responsible for Sandy's left hand turn into the Jersey Shore. I will not even dive into the details of the last storm of such scale, Katrina. All of this while the sun has been in an all but unprecedentedly inactive state for the past two 11 year solar cycles. Being a New Yorker, I now find it personally insulting to hear someone deny that the atmosphere is getting warmer as a direct result of human activity... This is why: the ONLY argument against taking immediate and direct action to reduce emissions of carbon and other heat trapping gasses is that it costs too much.. Well, Katrina was what? $200Bln in damage and we had to spend hundreds of millions to upgrade the flood protection system in New Orleans just so she could handle a storm that is smaller than Katrina.. Sandy is $50Bln in the first week with more sure to come, and It's clear that we now need flood barriers to protect cities on much of the east coast, in particular NYC. Each of these systems will doubtless cost billions. If we were to have spent even a small fraction of these costs on developing technologies that generate equivalent power while not emitting as much green house emissions, we would have made an investment in our future that would have not only reduced the chances of such catastrophes, but we would have also ensured American leadership in the major industrial sector of the 21st and 22nd centuries. I will leave it at that, and thank you for hearing me out if you have made it this far. I will however ask you to vote tomorrow, and to please give climate change the seriousness of thought it requires when deciding how you vote.
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