Given climate disruption due to radiative forcing from excess atmospheric CO2, which is a premise of this blog, it is only reasonable to wonder about, speculate, hypothesize, and posit that eventually the amount of this forcing and the feedbacks in terms of latent water vapor, latent heat, and excess energy in atmosphere begin to change the rules which both meteorological education and meteorological forecasting experience have learned over time. Whenever this occurs, and it seems it eventually must, forecasting skill of meteorologists will deteriorate, and this deterioration should be detectable.
I call this, for want of a better term, global blinding, and, whatever it is called, it will have consequences. These will be in preparedness for extreme events, for crop forecasts, for extended supply chains, and for retail markets, as well as for day-ahead forecasts for renewable energy. Until now, this has been a reasonable proposition and suspicion, albeit backed by Physics.
But today, the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Association published a paper by Professor Kerry Emanuel of MIT titled “Will global warming make hurricane forecasting more difficult?” which documents, at least to my knowledge, the first instance of this global blinding, the inability to forecast at what might be the most important moment, at landfall, the onslaught a hurricane poses for a coast, due to global climate change and the radiative forcing to which I refer. Professor Emanuel is one of if not the worldwide expert on tropical storms.
This is deliciously ironic, for there is a small population of meteorologists who have made it their standard practice to deny climate disruption and humanity’s part in it. Unfortunately, there is a much larger population of meteorologists who understand the science, and whose skills are being also obsolesced by Nature, or, rather, what we are doing to its climate in our collective, and completely foolhardy experiment to see if we can survive burning all the the fossil fuels reasonably available on Earth.
But, to me, it entirely makes sense. Given the collective paleoclimatological evidence from the Paleogene, and a little knowledge of nonlinear dynamical systems, it seems strange to think that anyone who understands these matters would think their heuristics and experience would continue to apply in a world which is no longer as stable as it once was.