The upper Midwest is in the grip of its coldest cold snap in decades, and while cities like Milwaukee, Minneapolis, and Chicago were prepared, it seems as though climate alarmists were not.
However, the warming is so far manifesting itself more in winters which are less cold than in much hotter summers. According to Dr David Viner, a senior research scientist at the climatic research unit (CRU) of the University of East Anglia, within a few years winter snowfall will become “a very rare and exciting event....Children just aren’t going to know what snow is.
That same year, David Parker with the Hadley Centre for Climate Prediction and Research , predicted that British children would have only “virtual” experience of snow via films and the Internet.
In 2001, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change predicted in its Third Assessment Report that the planet would see “warmer winters and fewer cold spells, because of climate change.”
One of that study's lead authors, Dr. Michael Oppenheimer, told The New York Times in 2001 that he "bought a sled in ’96 for my daughter, It’s been sitting in the stairwell and hasn’t been used. I used to go sledding all the time. It’s one of my most vivid and pleasant memories as a kid, hauling the sled out to Cunningham Park in Queens." Climate change, the article's author ominously intoned, was the reason that “sledding and snowball fights are as out-of-date as hoop-rolling.”
Three years after the IPCC's landmark report, climate scientists predicted in an article in The Guardian that the lack of cold winters and snowfall would soon decimate Scotland's skiing and winter sports industries.
“Unfortunately, it’s just getting too hot for the Scottish ski industry,” said Dr. Viner. “It is very vulnerable to climate change; the resorts have always been marginal in terms of snow and, as the rate of climate change increases, it is hard to see a long-term future.” Adam Watson, from the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology in Banchory, Aberdeenshire, believes the industry has no more than 20 years left.
In 2007 and 2008, Al Gore was predicting that the Arctic would be totally ice-free within 5 years.By 2009, as ice levels increased, though, he hedged his bets a little:
That of course didn’t happen, but it didn’t stop the dire predictions, like this one from the Cary Institute in 2012 :
Most people think about global warming during the dog days of summer. But temperatures are rising in the winter too, and that means less snow. Winter climate change raises important science and policy questions. A decrease in frigid nights means fewer frozen pipes and failing furnaces. We might also expect less ice-related accidents and the spread of species that are adapted to milder climates. But before we get excited about growing pineapples, we should remember that warm weather is also a boon for pests, like mosquitoes, and soil pathogens that are detrimental to trees and crops.
In March 2013, the Union of Concerned Scientists predicted that warmer springs would mean declines in snow cover:
“Warmer, earlier springs are a clear signal of a changing climate,” the group said. “March temperatures have grown 2.1 degrees (F) hotter, on average, in the United States since reliable record-keeping began in 1880s. Similarly, the first leaves have started appearing on plants several days earlier than they used to across the country.”
Once the decline in cold and snowy winters failed to materialize though, those in the climate prediction business adjusted their predicitions accordingly, saying that climate change caused extreme cold and extreme warm.
But even as they try to have it both ways, they can’t seem to agree.New research from ETH Zurich and the California Institute of Technology shows that global warming actually tends to reduce temperature variability, meaning that extreme cold snaps like the one we’re in now, shouldn’t be happening.
Yet it rather obviously is, meaning that this latest prediction, like countless doomsday scenarios before it, is just flat wrong.