Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America shed no tears at the death of former Zimbabwe dictator Robert Mugabe, who repressed and sometimes killed his people and ruthlessly clung to power for decades. They also react to the new that former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz will not be mounting a 2020 independent presidential bid and also remember the unrelenting venom that Democrats and the media allies directed at Schultz for even thinking about an independent campaign. And they slam both President Trump and the media for being unable to admit mistakes and turning literally anything – including a Sharpie sketch on a hurricane map – into grist for yet another controversy.
Hurricane Florence may do a great deal of damage and bring major flooding, but the system has weakened some in the days before hitting the east coast and even the storm surge may not be as devastating as advertised.
Dr. Tim Ball taught climatology at the University of Winnipeg. He is also the author of “The Deliberate Corruption of Climate Science.” Two days ago, forecasters expected Florence to come ashore as a Category Four hurricane, meaning maximum sustained winds were thought to be 130-156 miles per hour.
Florence is now a Category 2 storm, with wind speeds now expected to be between 100-110 miles per hour. That’s still capable of causing plenty of destruction, but how did forecasters miss the downgrade?
Dr. Ball says they shouldn’t have. He says as the storm moved north in the Atlantic Ocean, it was guaranteed to hit colder water, which weakens the power of hurricanes.
“Hurricanes are driven by the water that’s evaporated off the surface, and the heat energy that’s used to evaporate that water is released back into the storm when it condenses. That’s called the latent heat of condensation,” said Ball.
He also says the storm is further hampered moving north by the tropopause, the layer of our atmosphere between the troposphere and the stratosphere. The tropopause is twice as big at the equator than it is at either pole, so a reduced tropopause going north also weakens Florence.
“As they move north, these systems get squeezed, get flattened out. As they get flattened out, that means that they spin less rapidly, which reduces the wind speed,” said Ball.
He also says while the storm surge may cause significant peril along the coast and even further inland, that too will likely be less significant than advertised.
Ball says atmospheric pressure pushes down on the ocean but the low pressure accompanying hurricanes allows the ocean to bulge up and surge into land. It can get even worse if the storm strikes at high tide and depending how the wind from the hurricane is acting at landfall.
However, Ball says the 955 millibars (the measure of atmospheric pressure) is not particularly low, so that ocean bulge will hopefully be less catastrophic than most are reporting.
Listen here for more of Dr. Ball’s hurricane analysis, his explanations of why the the forecast is now shifting, and his larger thoughts on the climate debate.
President Obama hailed his unilateral ratification of the climate change accords this week and his allies went so far as to say the agreement goes a long way to stopping major storms like Hurricane Matthew, but a leading climate change expert says that’s nonsense.
On Wednesday, President Obama hailed the accords as the “best possible shot to save the one planet we’ve got.” NBC News White House reporter Ron Allen took the significance even further.
“It’s very interesting that this is happening on a day when there is a hurricane bearing down on the United States and in the Caribbean. Because these severe storms, beach erosion, intense weather episodes that we’ve had are perhaps the most practical example of what the president is talking about as the threat that the planet faces,” said Allen.
“This is what this whole climate agreement, signed by 190 nations and ratified by about 60 or so, is designed to stop,” continued Allen.
So is human activity in any way to blame for Hurricane Matthew?
“Absolutely not,” said Dr. Tim Ball, former professor of climatology at the University of Winnipeg. He is also the author of “The Deliberate Corruption of Climate Science” and “Human Caused Global Warming: The Biggest Deception in History.”
“By the way, Hurricane Matthew arrived off the coat of Florida on the four thousandth day of no recorded landfall hurricanes in the United States. This is why they had to hype it so much,” said Ball.
Ball says it’s not hard to refute the supposed scientific consensus on the impact of human activity on our climate. He says they’ve been wrong all along.
“If you look at the forecasts of the [United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change] since 1990, every single one of them has been wrong,” said Ball. “The basics of science is that if your prediction or forecast is wrong, you’re science is wrong, But they’re not admitting that. They’re pushing ahead anyway.”
He says those trying to get the public on board with the climate agenda don’t even have the basics of climate science correct.
“From a science point of view, it’s an absolute disaster and completely unnecessary. CO2 is less than four percent of the total greenhouse gases and the human contribution of that is .04 percent. Yet they completely ignore water vapor, which is 95 percent of the greenhouse effect,” said Ball.
Ball also has a problem with some of the data presented about Matthew and other storms. He asserts that the experts consistently over-estimate the power of hurricanes.
“They determine the wind speed of the hurricane over water because they have no surface wind speed measurements. They determine it by flying an aircraft through at 30,000 feet. It gets a wind speed up there and then, using a computer model, it calculates the wind speed at the surface,” explained Ball.
“In every single case, that has been wrong. It happened with Katrina. They said it was a Category Five and it was actually barely a Category Three by the time it got ashore. The same thing is happening with Matthew,” said Ball.
Ball is also pouring cold water on the celebration of the climate accords. He says it’s not nearly the global consensus that Obama would have us believe.
“It is, of course, a non-binding treaty and that was demanded by countries like China and Russia, who said, ‘We’re not going to tie our hands with this.’ And of course China has gone ahead with building two coal-burning plants every five days. It’s just laughable,” said Ball.
He says the whole point of the Paris accords was not to line up commitments to reduce carbon emissions but to establish the Green Climate Fund, an idea that has been pursued by climate activists since the Kyoto Accords in the 1990s.
And what is the Green Climate Fund?
“The developed nations had to pay for their sins according to the amount of CO2 they were producing. Then the money was going to be given over to the developing nations because they were suffering from the sins of the developed nations,” said Ball. “It was just a great wealth transfer.”
Ball says it’s important to note that less than a third of the nations that signed the accords have actually ratified it. He also says the nations of the world are expected to contribute $100 billion to the fund every year, but so far it has less than five billion dollars.
In his Wednesday statement, Obama admitted the accords would not solve climate issues but would be a good start.
“The Paris agreement alone will not solve the climate crisis. Even if we meet every target embodied in the agreement, we’ll only get to part of where we need to go,” said Obama, while saying the deal would help to delay or avoid looming problems.
Ball fears the next steps will only involve more government or even United Nations demands on the American taxpayer. He also says many climate activists admit all this action won’t accomplish anything with respect to the climate, which was also the case with the highly trumpeted Kyoto Accords years ago.
“Even if [Kyoto] was implemented in its full form, even the scientists were saying it will not be a measurable difference. The Paris climate agreement is even worse,” he said.
“It’s a travesty from the start. It was the use of science for a political agenda and it’s properly collapsing around its ears,” said Ball.
Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America point out Republicans should be making the Obamacare disaster into a huge political issue but so far they aren’t. They also discuss President Obama’s lofty approval numbers and note how they started to go up as Americans realized who the 2016 nominees were likely to be. And they slam Shep Smith of Fox News for telling Floridians to get away from Hurricane Matthew or they would all die, along with their children and everyone they know.