TAMPA — Clearly too many computer geeks calling themselves climate scientists have too much time on their hands. One sure way to spice up an otherwise dull academic existence and get some publicity is to predict something outrageous, secure in the knowledge that gullible journalists will go along with the gag.
The tag-team of Ning Lin of Princeton and Kerry Emmanuel of MIT have come up with a doozy. This brash pair claims that before the end of this century Tampa might be hit with something they call a gray swan cyclone, packing 235 mph winds and producing a 36-foot storm surge.
Wow! That’s some prediction. But hey, if you’re going to be a bear, be a grizzly. My guess is this event will take place just after they get rid of all the alligators in the New York City sewer system. I’d worry about it more if I hadn’t already died from acid rain, the hole in the ozone layer, pesticides, and the Alar from all those apples I eat.
As usual with alarmists, Lin and Emmanuel are pretty vague on their evidence for this possible catastrophe. In their paper on the subject they say the possibility of these monster storms can be predicted “using physical knowledge together with historical data.” (Translation: computer modeling, the same thing global warming alarmists use to predict that the planet will fry to a cinder if we don’t turn the economy over to Al Gore. So far the results from this high-tech modeling has been about as reliable as that of ancient seers who examined sheep entrails to predict the future.)
Emmanuel told the Tampa Tribune: “We’re talking about a small probability of events.” I’d guess about one-tenth the probability of my coming out of the stands at Dodger Stadium and taking Clayton Kershaw deep.
A National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration scientist, in classic understatement, told the Trib he had read the paper closely and had “serious concerns regarding its conclusions.” Ya think? But let’s at least give Lin and Emmanuel credit for choosing the end of the century as a time frame. If they had predicted this by next Thursday, everyone would have known they were wrong.
To all my Tampa friends and neighbors, please don’t start laying in bottled water and sandbags just yet. And don’t put the house on the market.
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