"Watching Sandy, Ignoring Climate Change"

"A couple of weeks ago, Munich Re, one of the world’s largest reinsurance firms, issued a study titled 'Severe Weather in North America.' According to the press release that accompanied the report, 'Nowhere in the world is the rising number of natural catastrophes more evident than in North America.' The number of what Munich Re refers to as 'weather-related loss events,' and what the rest of us would probably call weather-related disasters, has quintupled over the last three decades."

"While many factors have contributed to this trend, including an increase in the number of people living in flood-prone areas, the report identified global warming as one of the major culprits: 'Climate change particularly affects formation of heat-waves, droughts, intense precipitation events, and in the long run most probably also tropical cyclone intensity.'"

Elizabeth Kolbert reports for the New Yorker October 29, 2012.

SEE ALSO:

"Two Views of a Superstorm in Climate Context" (Dot Earth/NYT)

"Hawks vs. Scolds: How ‘Reverse Tribalism’ Affects Climate Communication " (Grist/David Roberts)

"The #Frankenstorm in Climate Context" (Dot Earth/NYT)

"Superstorm Sandy Is ‘What Global Warming Looks Like’" (ENS)

"Did Global Warming Contribute to Hurricane Sandy’s Devastation?" (Green/NYT)

"Has Climate Change Created a Monster?" (Climate Science Watch)

"'Climate of Doubt' -- Money Buys Skepticism" (Climate Science Watch)

"Hurricane Sandy Shows We Need To Prepare For Climate Change, Cuomo And Bloomberg Say" (Huffington Post)

"Hurricane Sandy Cable News Coverage Avoids Talk Of Climate Change" (Huffington Post)

"Pre-Hurricane Poll Finds Americans Ready To Deal With Climate Change" (Huffington Post)

"Scientists Look at Climate Change, the Superstorm" (AP)

Source: New Yorker, 10/31/2012