Register for an account


Enter your name and email address below.

Your email address is used to log in and will not be shared or sold. Read our privacy policy.


Website access code

Enter your access code into the form field below.

If you are a Zinio, Nook, Kindle, Apple, or Google Play subscriber, you can enter your website access code to gain subscriber access. Your website access code is located in the upper right corner of the Table of Contents page of your digital edition.


Chasing Weather Disasters

Collide-a-ScapeBy Keith KloorSeptember 24, 2009 7:33 PM


Sign up for our email newsletter for the latest science news

If there's a major flood in the headlines, you can bet Joe Romm is on the scene, milking the drama and tragedy for all it's worth. Does it matter that he's not even consistent? Here's how he first classifies the Georgia flooding:

I have called this type of rapid deluge, "global warming type" record rainfull."

A few sentences later comes the hedge:

And no, far be it from me to say that current flooding is caused directly by global warming.

Romm has a well-documented record of seizing on individual weather disasters to trumpet his narrative. He's smart enough to know this is dubious (hence his conflation and inconsistency), so it's more likely the habit derives from cyncial calculation that such disasters are among the best ways to dramatize the global warming debate. In that light, Romm and his choir would do well to pay attention to this observation made recently on Dot Earth, by the other side:

From a political standpoint (as opposed to science), climate skeptics are most successful when they merely point out the behavior and motivations of climate zealots.

3 Free Articles Left

Want it all? Get unlimited access when you subscribe.


Already a subscriber? Register or Log In

Want unlimited access?

Subscribe today and save 70%


Already a subscriber? Register or Log In