Extreme Temperature Diary-January 11, 2018/ Topic: Left Behind…Puerto Rico and Maria

Thursday January 11th… Dear Diary. The main purpose of this ongoing post will be to track United States extreme or record temperatures related to climate change. I’ll refer to extreme temperatures as ETs (not extraterrestrials)😊. Here is today’s climate change related topic:

Left Behind

Let’s not forget about the ongoing humanitarian crisis in Puerto Rico from the devastation left by Maria last year. As media focuses on other climate change related disasters, such as those recently in California, let’s not leave a struggling people behind. Nearly everyday I see a tweet from Eric Holthaus stating the dire need of many Americans:

Puerto Rico, Day 113:
—About 1.5 million people still w/o power
—Hundreds of thousands still w/o clean water
—Still a humanitarian emergency
So, turns out Puerto Rico’s power utility has been hoarding critical supplies. FEMA recovered them by gunpoint.

Astoundingly as shown in Eric’s tweet 1.5 million remain without power, and in some areas safe to drink water is in short supply…a situation that is inexcusable partially due to corruption, which I may rant about on another post. This time I’d like my readers to think about situations that this country will be dealing with similar to that of 2017 because of climate change. Due to a strain on resources and respondents other sections of this country besides Puerto Rico could be left behind.
Remember the Mad Max films that were post apocalyptic with people pretty much fending for themselves after society broke down? Climate change “stress events” may break down society if enough occur in a short time period such that a central government cannot respond adequately for decent recovery. In one sense this has already occurred in Puerto Rico. The U.S. is currently trying to recover from a record 300+ billion dollar price tag for weather and climate disasters from last year alone: https://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/billions/
What if the United States had three or more major hurricane strikes during the summer as rising sea levels increasingly become a factor, a Sandy event in the Northeast during the fall, nearly uncontrollable wildfires affecting populated centers in the West, on top of a major summer drought and heat wave during the summer…and all of this occurring for two or more consecutive years? Given the current state of climate change it would not take too much more global warming for grotesque weather years like 2017 to be common or worse. At some point some affected areas would have to be told to wait in line for help…being left behind. 
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The mild spell that is producing some record warm ET reports from the Midwest into the Northeast this week won’t last into the weekend. That wonderful dipole pattern aloft is returning in a hurry:
 
This next cold outbreak in the East won’t be quite so severe as the historic chill from last week, but I would expect some more record low reports east of the Rockies. Speaking of the historic cold outbreak as I’ve noted looking at record statistics events like this are becoming more rare: 
Here is the technical article from Climate Central in association with the recent cold wave:
I may add more relevant information should it cross my radar.
The Climate Guy

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