has just experienced record rainfall in June – double the average. Until now,
scientists would only go so far as to say that this is consistent with weather
patterns that can be expected from climate change.
But with extreme weather affecting large areas of the
United States, the scientific case
against continuing with the capitalist system of production for profit is
Massive forest fires, heat waves and droughts are devastating much of the country. This comes just a week after Tropical Storm Debby flooded
Some 113 million Americans are now in the excessive heat advisory zone. That’s
more than a third of the entire US
A relentless heat wave has gripped the eastern
More than 2,000 heat records have been broken over the past week. Thousands
more were set in June. Even more striking, the first day of July also broke
records for the highest-ever recorded temperatures on any date at spots in Georgia, Kentucky,
North Carolina and South Carolina.
Whilst many scientists remain cagey about the direct attribution of these extreme weather events to global warming induced by “human activity” - more precisely 150 years of capitalist industry - they are all agreed that the chances of such events are already much higher as a result of the effects of polluting emissions. According to Dr Clare Goodess, senior researcher at the
's Climatic Research Unit: University of East Anglia
Over the last five years or so, a growing number of peer-reviewed studies have provided convincing evidence of a detectable human influence on the increases in high temperature extremes which have been observed over the last few decades over the globe as a whole and over large-scale regions such as
Europe. It has been demonstrated that human influence has more than doubled the risk of a hot European summer like that of 2003 occurring, and substantially increased the risk of flooding which occurred in England and Wales in autumn 2000.
Kevin Trenberth heads climate research at the National Centre for Atmospheric Research in
"We are certainly seeing climate change in action," he said.
"This year has been exceptionally unusual throughout the United States."
So what does the future hold if the current capitalist mode of production is allowed to continue spewing its waste products into the environment?
Michael F. Wehner, staff scientist at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory sums it up: “It is important to know that the amount of climate change that we have experienced so far is very small to what is projected to occur by the middle and end of this century. By 2100, today's most extreme weather events will seem relatively normal.”
The present system is clearly not sustainable, whichever way you look at it. The good news is that mounting worldwide revolt against the effects of attempts to solve the financial and economic crisis provides the best chance for the convergence of a global movement against the out-of-control capitalist machine. Waiting for something to turn up is simply not an option.