SALEM Ore., Feb. 19, 2014 — President Obama visited cantaloupe farmer Joe Del Bosque on Valentine’s Day to see the damage to California produce for himself. From the farm, the President announced up to $238 million in much needed federal disaster relief for drought-stricken California.
In January, California Governor Jerry Brown declared a state of drought emergency. NOAA records confirm the entire state is experiencing its worst drought in recorded history. Records go back to 1895.
A White House fact sheet outlines federal disaster relief for California:
- $150 million in livestock disaster assistance. $100 million for 2014. Up to $50 million for previous years.
- $60 million made available for food banks.
- Set up 600 meal distribution centers.
- $15 million for conservation assistance.
- $5 million for the Emergency Watershed Protection (EWP) Program.
- $3 million in Emergency Water Assistance Grants for rural communities.
There is nothing new about the federal government stepping in to provide assistance in a disaster. What is new is what the President said after that during his 11-minute speech.
Unless and until we do more to combat carbon pollution that causes climate change, this trend (extreme weather) is going to get worse
– President Obama, Joe Del Bosque farm, 2/14/2014
The President specifically blamed California’s drought on human-caused global warming. He went on to say, to prepare for global warming, he will include a one billion dollar Climate Resilience Fund in the budget he submits to Congress next month.
According to the White House fact sheet the fund will:
- Invest in research and unlock data and information to better understand the projected impacts of climate change.
- Help communities plan and prepare for the impacts of climate change.
- Fund breakthrough technologies and resilient infrastructure to help face changing climate.
Climate change alarmism, as stated by the President, is a commonly held belief that there have been and will continue to be increases in the number and intensity of extreme weather events caused by human emissions of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.
The one billion in proposed new spending is not to budget for disasters but, instead, to research and prepare for the possible effects of future climate change based on theory.
The problem with the extreme weather viewpoint is that it’s only marginally supported by empirical scientific evidence.
Contrary to what the President has said in numerous speeches, including the State of the Union, droughts are not getting worse.
On Feb. 16th, just after the Presidential Valentine’s Day speech, the New York Times exposed that “Science linking drought to global warming remains in dispute”.
Indeed, even the IPCC agrees. In the latest AR5 Summary for Policymakers report released last September, it backed off and now says it has “low confidence” that global warming has intensified or lengthened past and present droughts, nor will it until at least the 2nd half of this century.
Furthermore, extreme tornadoes (F3+) have decreased since 1850. Extreme hurricanes (Cat 3+) have decreased since 1950. According to NOAA records, the Atlantic hurricane season last year was one of the mildest ever recorded.
Climate change is real. Global warming and global cooling far more dramatic than what we see today has been driven by natural variability since before the dawn of mankind. It’s not going to stop now.
Instead of earmarking a billion dollars to study something we already know will occur, the President should budget the billion to help disaffected Americans when natural disasters like the California drought inevitably happen.