Wednesday, August 13, 2008
I'm in Chicago in August and it is not even slightly hot. My experience today is of a piece with a trend:
[S]ummer heat continues in short supply, continuing a trend that has dominated much of the 21st Century's opening decade. There have been only 162 days 90 degrees or warmer at Midway Airport over the period from 2000 to 2008. That's by far the fewest 90-degree temperatures in the opening nine years of any decade on record here since 1930.
This summer's highest reading to date has been just 91 degrees. That's unusual. Since 1928, only one year—2000—has failed to record a higher warm-season temperature by Aug. 13.
Obviously, Chicago's experience does not reflect cooling in the planet's climate. It does, however, explain why "climate change" is still not a big issue for Americans. As I have written many times before, the American experience with climate change has been (generally) warmer winters and cooler summers. Europeans, however, have sweltered through much hotter summers in their unairconditioned apartments. My hypothesis is that very different experience -- not the nefarious Bush administration or ExxonMobil -- explains why the mitigation of climate change is a much lower priority for Americans than Europeans.
Here in Texas 95 would be a COOL day. Been a month and a half of daily high 100 or over most of the time.
But that's Texas.Labor Day will soon be here, and the daily high will drop below 95. THAT'S COMFORTABLE!
In Maryland the past few days have been almost autumnal. There was plenty of breeze for yesterday evening's Wednesday Night Races and my damn grass is still growing.
As we all know weather generally travels from west to east so the obvious cause of the European hot summers is the waste heat from our American air conditioners traveling across the Atlantic. QED.