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What Increase in Hurricanes?

Environmental patients, from Germany’s Environment Minister to professional namesake Robert F. Kennedy Jr., have opportunistically used the Hurricane Katrina disaster to pimp their beliefs on Global Warming, as I’ve discussed elsewhere.

Katrina is nature’s retribution for United States’ greenhouse gas emissions, and not a natural occurrence, they argue.  This allegation is based on the belief, mostly derived from computer modeling, that Global Warming will lead to a rise in the occurrence of destructive hurricanes.

Global Warming is an allegedly ongoing process caused by man-made emissions from carbon-rich fuels, fuels that man has been burning at high levels for two centuries or more.  The Earth, we are told, has already warmed several degrees.

So where is the increase in Hurricanes?  The chart below (derived from data at the National Hurricane Center site) shows the number of Hurricanes making landfall in the United States in each of the three 50-year periods from 1850 to 2000.

The most recent 50 years, in which Global Warming should be most advanced and progressing at the highest rate, have been the safest. 

If one believes that Hurricane activity is controlled by Global Warming, then the actual data indicate that –for those worried about the United States at least– Global Warming has made us safer, and perhaps spared New Orleans for years.

Clearly then, based on the theory that hurricanes are controlled by greenhouse gases,  Americans have a civic responsibility to burn fossil fuel.  Make that a HUMMER responsibility.  Civics get good mileage.  Dangerous cars, those Civics.

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Mr. Johnson, a writer and medical researcher in Cambridge, Mass., is a regular contributor to HUMAN EVENTS. His column generally appears on Tuesdays. Archives and additional material can be found at www.macjohnson.com.

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