Among the latest purported casualties of “climate change” are some 80,000 reindeer that died of starvation in recent years as a result of warmer and wetter seasons, according to reports.
Global warming has become the official whipping boy of the environmentalist movement, blamed for everything from a slump in coffee production to Hurricane Matthew to a drop in the population of Hawaiian monk seals and even — remarkably — colder winters.
One can’t help wondering about the rampant climate change that has characterized the history of our planet — including floods, tempests, earthquakes, hurricanes, and at least five major ice ages — long before humanity started leaking greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. Who was to blame for the vast and constant fluctuations in temperature before man came along?
Nonetheless, the August deaths of more than 300 wild reindeer after being struck by “unusually severe lightning” in Norway, as well as the untimely demise of some 2,000 reindeer from anthrax in July are being attributed to the cosmic bugaboo of global warming.
According to a new study published in the journal Biology Letters, more than 80,000 reindeer in the Arctic died of starvation in the Novembers of 2006 and 2013 as a result of warmer, wetter Arctic falls and winters resulting from climate change.
Yet as the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) has noted, many of the recent climatological events and trends “can be explained by the natural variability of the climate system,” without excluding an indeterminate influence from atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases. In the same report, the WMO said that, at this time, researchers have not yet been able to ascertain “the respective roles being played by climate variability and human-induced climate change.”
And as Nature magazine explained in 2012, “climate attribution” — the attempt to link singular weather events to manmade global warming — “rests on a comparison of the probability of an observed weather event in the real world with that of the ‘same’ event in a hypothetical world without global warming.” As critics have observed, such attribution claims “are unjustifiably speculative, basically unverifiable and better not made at all.”
The editors of the journal conclude that “Better models are needed before exceptional events can be reliably linked to global warming.”
Undaunted, the Christian Science Monitor eerily warns that the annihilation of myriad reindeer in polar regions may serve as “an omen of what is to come with climate change.”
As difficult to predict as is the weather, we can be certain of one thing: temperatures will continue rising among climate alarmists.
Follow Thomas D. Williams on Twitter Follow @tdwilliamsrome.