The ABC is acting as the taxpayer-funded PR agent for the privately-funded Climate Council, which itself is behaving as if it had never seen a heatwave before:
Heatwaves in Australia are becoming more frequent, hotter and are lasting longer because of climate change, a report released today by the Climate Council says.
The interim findings of the report, titled Australian Heatwaves: Hotter, Longer, Earlier and More Often, come as southern Australia swelters through a heatwave, with the temperature in Adelaide today forecast to hit 46 degrees Celsius.
The report says heat records are now happening three times more often than cold records, and that the number of hot days across Australia has “more than doubled”.
It says the duration and frequency of heatwaves increased between 1971 and 2008, and the hottest days have become hotter.
And it predicts that future heatwaves will last up to three days longer on average, they will happen more often, and the highest temperatures will rise further.
“It is clear that climate change is making heatwaves more frequent and severe,” report co-author Professor Will Steffen said in a statement.
“Heatwaves have become hotter and longer and they are starting earlier in the season.”
After notching up two consecutive days over 40C, Melbourne is on track to record its second-longest heatwave since records began in the 1830s.
The longest heatwave in Melbourne was in 1908, when there were five consecutive days over 40C.
When CO2 was under 300ppm, well below the ‘safe’ 350ppm. Shurely shome mishtake?
Despite the IPCC and many other climate scientists refusing to link ‘extreme weather’ to climate change, the Climate Council and the ABC are quite happy to do so as part of a co-ordinated scare campaign:
Professor Steffen says the extreme weather patterns can be attributed to climate change, with the continued burning of fossil fuels trapping more heat in the lower atmosphere.
Professor Steffen says large population centres of south-east Australia stand out as being “at increased risk from many extreme weather events, including heatwaves”.
“The current heatwave follows on from a year of extreme heat, the hottest summer on record and the hottest year on record,” he said. (source)
But where’s the warming, Willy? Global temperatures have barely risen for over a decade. Whilst Australia is experiencing a heatwave, the US is freezing. Oh wait, that’s climate change too. Everything’s climate change.
All of the above is ably abetted, naturally, by the Bureau of Meteorology, which suddenly finds it an appropriate time to announce that it has introduced a definition of “heatwave”. Which begs the question, in a country which has been ravaged by heat waves since the dawn of time, why has it taken until now to define what one actually is? I’m surprised that the Bureau stopped at ‘severe’ in their heatwave categories, and didn’t jump the shark with ‘catastrophic’ (like the bush fires), or even ‘calamitous’, ‘apocalyptic’ or ‘cataclysmic’! My own suggestion would be ‘OMG we’re all gonna fry’…
Once again, the ABC dutifully does the Bureau’s PR work here.