Bugger, all that extreme weather last year was…well..unextreme

Brazilian Typhoon

One of the thing apologists and promotors of global warming, or climate change or whatever they want to call it say when confronted with facts is to point at “increasing extreme weather events” and tell us rather apocalyptically that we can expect more.

Like most things they say those too are lies. I wonder how long before Kitchen and Cookware blogger Russell Brown, hate speech blogger and part time real estate agent Martyn Bradbury and our favourite arts and travel blogger David Farrar catch up. They are the real deniers now.

Time Magazine explains how the “extreme weather events” of 2013 were not even close to extreme.

Weather has been dominating the news cycle the past several days, as much of the U.S. has suffered through record-breaking cold. But while it might seem as if we’ve all been sucked into a polar vortex of weather news, 2013 was punctuated by coverage of major natural disasters like Supertyphoon Haiyan in November, massive floods in India in June and the Category 5 tornadoes in Moore, Oklahoma in May. No wonder so many people felt that extreme weather was on the rise.

Except that wasn’t the case—at least not in 2013. The reinsurance company Munich Re came out with its annual assessment of natural disasters, and found that 2013 was an unusually quiet year. Catastrophes like floods and storms claimed more than 20,000 lives around the world, and caused more than $125 billion in damages. While that’s clearly a lot—and the number of deaths from disasters rose over 2012—both figures are well below the 106,000 in deaths and $184 billion in losses that were experienced on average over the past decade. Though the total number of loss-causing catastrophes—880—was above the average over the past 10 years, the damages in both financial and human terms was less. “There was no large-scale natural catastrophe event in 2013,” said Carl Hedde, head of risk accumulation for Munich Re.  

Gee wasn’t Kitchen and Cookware blogger Russell Brown going on about listening to insurers the other day…why yes he was. I guess he wasn’t reading Muncih Re’s report.

So what can we take from the unextreme weather of 2013? Not much. According to Munich Re the number of loss events—storms, quakes, volcanoes, tsunamis—has been mostly on the increase, from less than 400 in 1980 to more than 800 now. Economic losses from disasters have been increasing, from about $50 billion a year in the 1980s to on average just under $200 billion a year by the last decade, according to a recent World Bank study. But a significant portion of that increase is due not necessarily to stronger or more frequent extreme weather, but global economic growth. The global economy has more than doubled since 1980, which means there’s simply more to lose economically to a hurricane, drought or flood. At the same time global deaths from extreme weather have dropped precipitously, which again is less a factor of the number or intensity of extreme events, so much as it is a result of economic growth. Rich countries are simply better able to withstand extreme weather than poor countries, which is a major reason why Haiyan killed 6,000 people in the Philippines, while Hurricane Katrina—a powerful Category 5 storm—killed less than 2,000 in the U.S. (Greater population density in poor nations plays a role in higher death tolls as well.)

Right so the increase in damages from “extreme weather” is mostly because we are richer and more prosperous. Bugger…that is that excuse scotched…oh well there is stillt he IPPC to fall back on…

Exactly what impact a warming planet will have on extreme weather isn’t clear. While a warmer atmosphere can hold more moisture, which can mean more intense rainfall and storms, the most recent assessment from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change didn’t find strong evidence that tropical storms were increasing in frequency or intensity as the climate changed. …

But regardless of the effects of climate change, a growing planet that puts more people and property in the way of storms and floods is one that is increasingly vulnerable to extreme weather.

Another shibboleth of the warmists is destroyed by facts and figures. There is more damage and more cost not because of intensity, but rather because there are more of us living in the wrong place and we have more stuff.


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  • Geography 105 – Natural Hazards taught at the University of Auckland points out the exact same thing as that Munich Re report illustrates.

    But hey whatever floats their boat as they continue to warp findings into their consensus rather than adapt the consensus to the new findings like good scientists and academics do…

  • Rodger T

    I think you will find that all those evil Co2 emissions being pumped into the atmosphere are causing the earths rotation to slow down cos` the days appear to be longer than 6 months ago.

  • Col

    Just read a story on xtra about Christchurch is going to have an increase of 1 metre of water within the next 100 years and will be flooded. They talk about South Shore which is and was a sandbank, sea on one side and lagoon on the other side, you would have been a fool to build there if you ask me, anyway CHCH central is about 20metre below sea level, but then we have a lot of Green people down here. Christchurch was a swamp.

    • Saw that article too. Despite again being blasted down by the warmists (who are getting increasingly pathetic) I pointed out (and can happily go get the geological records again) that since the last Grand Ice Age 18,000 years ago Sea Levels were 6 metres lower and ALSO 6 metres higher than currently now.

      Meaning? Sea Levels go up and down all the time naturally so one way or the other we are err screwed :P

      • ropteron

        I hear you Ben.
        I often think of ‘The World’ and the Palm Tree, the island sand developments just off the coast at Dubai (worth a Google).
        How did whoever decide the sea level wasn’t going to rise. The islands are so low.

        Like I said to a mate during a heated debate recently “I got three words for you….Te. Ku. Iti”. lol

    • Lord_Montrose

      Here is the sea level trend for Lyttelton since 1924, 2.36mm per year, i.e. maybe another 0.2 metre by 2100. So Tonkin & Taylor have exaggerated the rise by 5 or 10 times.

      • Col

        Tonkin & Taylor must be full of Greens or someone putting the article on the net is a Green. So much bullshit going on.

    • AnonWgtn

      That means of course that those areas effected will have the Council housing LIM’s marked. Will reduce house values for a start.
      Council’s problem as not an insurance matter as far as erosion of land is concerned.
      (And not more for the bloody New Zealand Taxpayers).
      Sorry for houseowners though, but they paid for the report.

      • Col

        I started surfing down on the spit, and at that age I though I wouldn’t want to live there, look at the storms in the US on the beach, that just takes the sand away, should never been allowed to build there, just common sense in my opinion, nothing to do with warming.

        • TreeCrusher

          The spit will always be there as long as the waimakariri river transports sediment and the prevailing wind is nor-east. The position of it might change, but it will still be there. Change one of those variables, like building a big dam that stops sediment transportation and you won’t need the sea level to rise to knock the spit out.

          • Col

            Just not wide enough for me, and no hills to run up.

    • TreeCrusher

      Sorry mate you are way off the mark with the 20 m call. The floor of the cathedral is 6.2 m above mean sea level (although this has likely changed a little post quake, if you wanted to split hairs I could give you the exact level tomorrow).

      Simple hydraulics tells you it is higher than sea level as the Avon river FLOWS through the city. If it were 20 m below sea level it would be a lagoon.

      The tidal influence reaches up to about the Stanmore Road bridge.

    • TreeCrusher

      If you are interested in the history of chch infrastructure then a book was commissioned by the old drainage board called From Swap to City by John Wilson. It is available as a free download here: http://canterbury.royalcommission.govt.nz/documents-by-key/20110929.37

      An interesting point about the position of the original city (ie the four aves) was that it was the first dryish piece of land they came to large enough for the whole city when navigating up the Avon. But not everywhere east of the city was swamp, Ferry Road for example followed dry land. The problem was in the post war boom when they started in filling land with houses that was not ideal as it was cheap to service because the waste water treatment plant and associated infrastructure had been built out there.

  • jaundiced
    • Bunswalla

      Wagga Wagga defence – been scotched already. Must do better.

    • LabTested

      Yes we understand the Mantra of your Religion.

      If it’s Hot it’s Climate
      If its Cold its Weather

  • philbest

    Here’s a goodie from a favourite US site:


    “Everything Is Because Of ‘Climate Change’, Except What Isn’t”

    “…….The way you can tell that climate science is junk is that no one in the True Believercommunity has the guts to try to disprove it. If it is such a robust theory, it can stand the scrutiny!

    That is the essence of the scientific method.

    Skepticism is a good and healthy thing. When climate skeptics are labeled as fascists (and worse) merely for skepticism expressed in good faith, well, that’s a big red flag.

    It is clear that the climate science community does not know everything there is to know about how the climate works. They discover new mechanisms all the time. Every one that is discovered becomes intriguing new evidence supporting the Global Warming theory. What are the statistical chances that of, say, 100 newly discovered subtle climate interactions, 100% of them work to amplify, rather than dampen, the warming tendencies of a minor constituent gas in the atmosphere?…….

    “………And worse than the the scientists are the armchair commentators. In the press, on opinion shows, in editorials, on social media, on blogs, in the classroom, at watercoolers, and in every other possible venue, the global warming faithful are there, ready to condemn heresy and make pretense at moral superiority. They are part of the club, the devout and true, and you are either with them or against them. Humorless, ill-informed, pompous, and self-certain, they knowthings. They don’t think them, they know them. And what they know is that everything can be related to global warming, if by related you mean “made to support.” And anything can’t be made to support, simply isn’t related…..”

  • philbest

    And another:


    A Killing Frost for Green Bosses

    “……In recent years alarmists of both species have been trying to move the goalposts in what reasonable people can only pray is a doomed, eleventh-hour effort to remain relevant. Now many of these tireless, annoying do-gooders speak of climate change and its hazards instead of merely squawking about the more specific phenomenon global warming.

    It’s a slippery move because the climate is by its nature always changing. The definition of climate is hugely important. Climate is different than weather. Weather refers merely to the short-term conditions of variables in a specific area.

    Nature is constantly adjusting weather patterns and its future actions are often difficult to predict. Water levels rise and fall. Deserts come and go. The wind blows and then it doesn’t. Sometimes there is much precipitation; other times, hardly any. The ways in which the various elements interact with each other is always changing, sometimes by a lot, sometimes by only a little.

    Climate is “weather writ large,” according to the most useful definition of the term this writer could find online. “Climate is determined by a complex combination of geographic conditions and latitude. It is weather writ large, which is to say, weather patterns considered over a long time — years, decades, even centuries.”

    How can one argue against a truism called climate change? Climate change is a fact. That and two and a half bucks will get you a ride on New York City’s subway.

    Weather is always changing, has always been changing, and will always be changing. By the same token climate is always changing, has always been changing, and will always be changing. Change is perhaps the only constant in the study of climate and changes in climate are not always bad.

    Moving from the specific to the general by making a political issue out of climate change, instead of global warming, affords alarmists infinite flexibility to keep spinning, misdirecting, and changing the parameters of the debate.

    It is an irrevocable license for bloviators, demagogues, science-hating misanthropes, and enemies of freedom……”

    Do read the whole thing, there is a LOT more to it, and it is excellent.

  • philbest

    “…..Another shibboleth of the warmists is destroyed by facts and figures. There is more damage and more cost not because of intensity, but rather because there are more of us living in the wrong place and we have more stuff…..”

    And that has been getting pointed out for years, such as by Bjorn Lomborg in “The Skeptical Environmentalist”, published in 2001.

  • timemagazine

    These climate change nuts have been cheating for years, and we had to pay them billions. I wish somebody could sue them and ask them to pay back all the money they have stolen from us.They have all become wealthy thanks to taxpayers money. When will the majority of the public finally wake up and stand up against these well organised mafia? They actually don’t care so much as they pretend, say for example, about all those birds killed by the ugly and non productive wind turbines.

  • AnonWgtn

    What Munich Re and Swiss Re, and a couple of others for example control all New Zealand’s wholesale insurance.
    They are the employers of some of the Worlds best, non Public Service, ie University, scientists, and have been in the forefront of such natural weather phenomena for many years. They finish up paying for most of it.
    Worth listening to.

  • pukakidon

    A new study has been completed that has just identified that we are suffering from Global moderation and Climate averageness.

  • axeman

    Yes but according to Time Magazine, both global cooling and warming cause a polar vortex – how convenient!