Monday, September 26, 2016

Despite major floods, WI has zero interest in climate change

[Updated from 9/25] Ten weeks ago there was massive flooding in Northwestern Wisconsin that killed three people.

This week two more people died in more flooding that damaged even more counties in Western Wisconsin.

Experts for years have been predicting severe rain events as a consequence of a rapidly warming climate.

A recent national report's summary, with multiple charts:

Heavy downpours are increasing nationally, especially over the last three to five decades. Largest increases are in the Midwest and Northeast. Increases in the frequency and intensity of extreme precipitation events are projected for all U.S. regions
And a separate, UW Sea Grant Institute report said: 
As warmer temperatures increase evaporation and the amount water vapor in the atmosphere rise worldwide, the air will become more saturated, increasing humidity levels year round. This means when it does rain or snow, it’s likely to be in very large amounts. 
All of this means Wisconsin can expect an increase in extreme heat waves and more frequent droughts in summer. At the same time, severe thunderstorms may double in frequency, increasing the amounts of damage caused by heavy rainfall, flashfloods, hail and strong tornadoes.    
But Wisconsin under Scott Walker, Attorney General Brad Schimel and other GOP state officials are officially hostile to climate change - - in the extreme - - and obeisant to the fossil fuel sector whose greenhouse gas emissions are also fueling the warming climate.

Walker and other Wisconsin GOP officials lined up to sign a Koch brothers pledge opposing climate change initiatives if they cost one new net cent.

Then the list got bigger:

The pledge has more that 400 signers, including Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson, U.S. Reps. Sean Duffy, Reid Ribble and Jim Sensenbrenner, state Sens. Alberta Darling, Glenn Grothman, Mary Lazich and Leah Vukmir, and state Reps. Dale Kooyenga, Bill Kramer, Jim Ott and Don Pridemore, all Republicans.
So when the deluge subsides, Walker can calm the waters temporally and pantomime some chief executive moves with hand-shaking and damage tours, and state officials can fill in all the necessary forms for assistance from the Federal Government they say on all other occasions is too big and well-heeled.

But a lot of that federal aid and whatever scarce state dollars Walker can throw into the pot will literally go down the drain during the next heavy rain event until and unless the state gets serious about respecting and merging solid science with infrastructure planning and adaptation that could minimize future damage.

And save lives.

And as we say, get with the program and stop being the State in the State of Denial

Update: Take a look at what a real state leaders is doing.


Anonymous said...

Why worry about climate change when you can just declare emergencies and collect gubbermint money! This is the only economic stimulus Walker has for our economy. Imagine what job growth would be without all the disasters that he bellies up to the public trough each time he declares and emergency!

Jake formerly of the LP said...

Actually, the President and Congress decides whether to allow FEMA aid and related measures. Wouldn't it be karmic if they said "We'd like to help, but we saw you carrying out the Koch agenda on pollution and climate, so we'll let you deal with, and pay for, the consequences of that inaction."

Fortunately, Dems actually give a damn about human beings, so they won't punish a place for their scummy elected officials. But a bad side of me wishes they would

my5cents said...

I thought Walker was totally against Federal Aid. He turns down any sensible aid from the Federal government that would actually help people, Medicaid, fast transit, etc., but when it comes to natural disasters he scoops all of it up that he can so it doesn't come out of state coffers. There is no logical reasoning with any Republican when it comes to climate change. They all pretend they are dumb, saying that they are not scientists. I am not a scientist either, but I know the weather has changed dramatically since I was a child. Vote blue!!!

Anonymous said...

It is maddening when I travel to Iowa and have to listen to these conservative yahoos talk about how government is bad and programs create dependence. If we didn't have big Ag subsidies the economy in the state of Iowa would collapse. They are all against a needy person getting some help but God forbid if anybody wants to cut the size of their check. Same with our mega-farms. Just like the WEDC claiming they don't know where all the money went. They certainly didn't hand out cash so get copies of the checks from the bank and see who they were made out to and who signed the check. I get so sick of imbeciles on the TV and in newspapers who won't say sh*t if they have a mouthful because they are sucking up in hopes to get some Republican crumbs from the table.