Although there is at present no means by which to tell whether this particular storm was due to human induced global warming, the devastation it has caused is consistent with the projections generated by climate change models that suggest such storms will become more severe as the world warms up.
Computer models projecting the impacts of climate change on the weather suggest that increased sea surface temperatures caused by global warming will lead to more intense hurricanes. Research findings published in the science journal Nature  in July suggests that this is already happening.
The analysis, by climatologist Professor Kerry Emanuel of the Massachussetts Institute of Technology, says that major storms in the Atlantic and Pacific since the 1970s have increased in intensity by about 50 per cent. This trend is closely linked to rises in the average temperatures of the sea surface. In stark contrast to the position of the Bush Administration, the New Orleans City Council in May 2001 passed a resolution urging federal action on climate change. And the danger posed to the city by global warming was recognised in June by New Orleans Mayor, C. Ray Nagin who noted.
“The International Panel on Climate Change has warned that New Orleans is the North American city most vulnerable to the effects of climate change. The rise of the Earth's temperature, causing sea level increases that could add up to one foot over the next 30 years, threatens the very existence of New Orleans”.
Tony Juniper, Director of Friends of the Earth, said that “The Earth is warming up fast and the consequences of extreme weather are being felt in all regions. In the face of mounting evidence of rapid climate change President Bush has downplayed the scale of the problem and refused to take action to tackle it. His administration has worked tirelessly to derail international agreement on climate change and sought to put narrow US economic interests above global climatic stability. In the aftermath of this storm even he must wonder if he has made the correct choice”.
Posted on 6th September 2005
IEMA reacts to IPCC report: AR6 Climate Change 2021
- 9th August 2021
IEMA reacts to CCC Progress report to Parliament
- 24th June 2021
IEMA reacts to Climate Change Committee Report
- 15th June 2021
IEMA Reacts to Queen’s Speech
- 11th May 2021
Enhancing Scotland’s EIA Community - Scotland’s EIA Conference 2021 moves online
- 22nd April 2021
IEMA launches senior management briefing on how organisations can benefit from effective environmental auditing
- 29th March 2021