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Climate Wars: Hickman County, KY Battlefield
I waited until it cooled off to snap this picture.

“What the Heck. Really, 109 degrees in the shade!”

It was on Saturday that I had my first yearly weather event stun me. For the past five years, I have been totally shocked how much time and energy I have had to devote to surviving or coping with extreme weather.

Today, June 29, 2012 would prove to be yet another mini chapter in my ongoing modern journal of making peace with extreme weather. Today, at 11:47 am, the bank temperature gauge read 109 degrees, in the shade of the building.

 WOW!!! In June.

For more information on "the vanishing north" follow the link to the Economist

Already this week we had 100 degrees on Sunday, 99 degrees on Monday. Somehow the pattern broke on Tuesday with an 87 degree high. Wednesday hit 100 degrees. Thursday the temperature jumped back to 105 degrees. Friday the heat leveled off at 108 degrees at 3:07 pm. 

For five years, each year has been a new adventure in the world of “being at ground zero in mid America for experiencing the trills and joys of living through climate change.”

Except, most people in this part of mid America, still believe in FOX NEWS and Rush Limbaugh when they scream that there is no climate change. In their world, all of this talk about what a few deranged scientists have to say is just an excuse for the government to take more freedoms away from good Americans. In this world view, climate change is a hoax designed to give the bad environmentalists in the White House a weapon to use in their war on coal, and regulations against dumping heavy metals like arsenic, into the air or water.


I have grown too tired of listening to the propaganda machines of big oil, big coal, and big banks to even try to match them on the crazy talk scale.

There is growing evidence that a massive shift of high altitude air circulation patterns as well as new patterns for moisture movement within the geography of the watersheds of the Mississippi, Ohio, Cumberland and Tennessee Rivers are establishing a new regional model for zones for extreme droughts and the movement of water and rain.   

Few, if any, officials in Kentucky state or federal government have yet to acknowledge that the existence of the 40 plus coal fired power plants from Paducah up to Ghent are any part of the problem of climate shift or extreme weather events.

Officials will not talk about how these plants, bordering both sides of the Ohio River, are becoming heat islands increasingly acting like a mega wind tunnel of hot air pushing new more powerful storms into metro Louisville and Central Kentucky.

Environmental activists within the Sierra Club are now beginning to ponder the question, “What if these mega coal fired energy plants are in effect forming a 200 mile long tipping point in Mid America, where upper level heat is creating a wind tunnel corridor that captures vast weather systems just above Cairo, Illinois?

Once captured these systems interact with and direct the soup of warm and cold air systems to cook new and powerful storms across the lower Ohio River Valley.
Another question for all you weather and climate nerds who ponder these types of “what ifs.” Look at Kentucky’s role in the Greening of Greenland.

During the 1980’s New York and the New England states sued Kentucky for damages from acid rain. Moisture falling as acid rain was proven to have originated in Kentucky. If acid rain originating in Kentucky reached the New England states, why couldn’t it reach Nova Scotia and Greenland? Maybe Kentucky is part of the climate shift in Canada and Greenland.  

No one knows for sure.

We must stop shouting at each other and try to research and prepare for a hotter world taking shape around us. If nothing else, this week is proving to me that we are losing our springs, autumns, and even the winters. We have fewer snows, warmer days and a prospect of summer from May through October. 

Heat knows not color, wealth or politics. Heat is just a force of nature that can cause man’s domain over the earth to be short ranged and short lived unless we join as one mind and one force to act to save humanity from itself.

The Economist - June 16, 2012


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