Houston Sees 500 Year “Flash Flood Emergency”. India Roasts.

May 27, 2015

I’m on travel this week, so pinch hitting on posts where possible. These are some highlights:

500 Year Floods aren’t as unusual as they used to be.

In India, Spring Heat wave melts roads and claims lives.

Meanwhile, 2015 seems on track to erase 2014 as the hottest year in the modern record.


The uninterrupted continuation of the warming trend is no surprise. The 10 warmest years on record have occurred in the past 17 years.

And though the rise in the last 10 years has been gentle by comparison, since 1910, the clear trend has been up,according to NASA’s Global Land-Ocean Temperature Index.

In the latter two thirds of that time, warming and the effects on climate have been epochal, says the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. “Since the 1950s, many of the observed changes are unprecedented over decades to millennia.”

That new March record

March 2015 edged past the last record high March, which was in 2010, rising by 0.09 degrees Fahrenheit (0.05 C). Average global land and water temperatures for the first quarter of this year beat the last record first quarter, 2002, by the same margin.

Yet another broken record this March was more obvious to the eye. The expanse of Arctic sea ice shrunk to an absolute low for any March on record.

“The average Arctic sea ice extent for March was 430,000 square miles (7.2 percent) below the 1981–2010 average. This was the smallest March extent since records began in 1979,” NOAA said.

Small gains, large net loss

On the other end of the globe — in the Antarctic — sea ice has been on the gain, and this year, it hit a record March high.

But globally, the overall result is a big net loss. “The upward trend in the Antarctic … is only about a third of the magnitude of the rapid loss of sea ice in the Arctic Ocean,” according to NASA.

E&E Energy Wire (paywalled):

The record-breaking warm weather that has hit northern Alaska this spring is causing severe flooding on the 435-mile Dalton Highway, severing the profitable North Slope oil production fields from the rest of the state.
The Dalton Highway, the oil industry’s only land-based connection to its Deadhorse headquarters, was built in 1974 as a supply road to support construction of the Trans-Alaska Pipeline System.
Usually open year-round, the highway was shut down on May 18 after unusually warm weather triggered a sudden snow and ice melt in the Brooks Range mountains. As local waterways swelled, the Sag River washed out roughly 25 miles of road.
Alaska Department of Transportation & Public Facilities reported that some parts of the road were covered by 2 feet of flowing river water.
Department spokeswoman Meadow Bailey described the flooding as unprecedented.
“All of this has been very unique to us,” Bailey noted. “People who’ve worked up [on the North Slope] for 30 years have never seen anything like this. And we have no records of this kind of thing.”

4 Responses to “Houston Sees 500 Year “Flash Flood Emergency”. India Roasts.”

  1. Andy Lee Robinson Says:

    FEMA are out of their depth. Send in Noah.

    As the probability distribution bell-curve shifts to the right, the improbable becomes probable, and the impossible becomes possible.

    Levels of precipitation were simply astounding.

  2. Our 500 year flood happened 2 years ago. I don’t think it’s going to be ‘500 year flood’ anymore. More like 50 year, 25 year, even 10 year?

  3. jimbills Says:

    Climate Change, a Factor in Texas Floods, Largely Ignored:

    ‘But Nielsen-Gammon said there are definitely known impacts of global warming in Texas, and the state could be doing more with that knowledge. “We have the advantage of having non-zero information about how the climate’s changing, and we’re acting as though the information content is zero,” he said. ‘

    • dumboldguy Says:

      A great article, and one that shows there are still a few functioning brains in Texas. Unfortunately, there seem to be too few, and if Hayhoe’s figures in the other thread of 70% to 90% denial of AGW among Texans is true, the “zero effort” will likely continue until the SHTF big-time.

      I hate to wish ill on anyone, particularly the small minority of Texans that do get it, but I’ll say what I’ve said before. Once the 500 year floods begin arriving weekly and waves of tornadoes as we saw a few weeks ago sweep TX, OK, KS, and the other red states in the midwest, the fools MAY start paying attention to the science.

      Of course, if those climate change impacts do happen, it is just as likely that the fools will say that it is the hand of god—-he is punishing us because we are passing too many laws allowing gay marriage, providing health care for the poor and uninsured, and raising the minimum wage.

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