What's climate change making more awesome today?

Remember, climate change isn't intentionally trying to make your life miserable. It's just a trend in rising global average temperatures. That comes along with lots of side effects, some of which do, in fact, make human life pretty miserable. In other cases, though, the effect can be beneficial. For instance: In Antarctica, climate change seems to be increasing the population of adorable Adelie penguins.


  1. Fox News will use this story to show that climate change is all good in 3…2…1…

  2. In the Futurama setting, climate change has made the population of Spotted Owls boom, to the point where they are like pigeons, hooting and fluttering around in the city’s alleys and garbage piles.

    1. Fry:  This snow is beautiful! I’m glad global warming never happened.
      Leela:  Actually, it did. But thank God nuclear winter cancelled it out.

  3. Maggie, depending on which data base is used for the calculations, for the past 10 to 20 years there has been no global warming. The trend toward rising global temperatures has stopped even though CO2 emissions have kept rising! That directly contradicts the currently accepted AGW hypothesis. We don’t know which way things will go, up or down. We don’t know for sure whether the Earth is cooling or warming. 

    To put it bluntly, we don’t know what we are doing. We thought we did but we don’t. That’s exactly what Dr. James Lovelock, the god father of the CO2 driven global warming hypothesis said last April.  Since we don’t know what we are doing it’s obvious that we need more and better basic scientific research in the field of climate science. This fundamental research is what makes climate science an awesome field today.    

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  5. “In Antarctica, climate change seems to be increasing the population of adorable Adelie penguins”

    The fish they eat are probably not too happy about that. But then again the food the fish eat will probably flourish. And whoever eats that might get quite happy as well.. and whoever eats who eats that might get some extra food too… until somethings tips the balance and algae takes over and kills all cute Adelie penguins through starvation.

    Trying to find a silver lining on climate change is a pointless and dangerous exercise.

  6. Well, the good has been the string of relatively moderate winters we’ve had (in my area. ymmv.) The bad has been the multiple-days-in-the-100’s summers we’ve also had. I’m not sure if it’s been a fair trade-off.

  7. Chicago no longer has Chicago winters — in fact, I don’t believe we went below zero at all this winter — and our summers now don’t have the long stretches of mid- to high-90’s with godawful humidity.  We’ve been reassigned one gardening zone already.

    The fact that it’s a global catastrophe making my city more livable keeps my giddiness in check.

  8. >It’s just a trend in rising global average temperatures.

    I love your writing, Maggie, but I have to say this is a rather poor gloss.

    ‘Global warming’ is a terrible name as it should more accurately be called ‘massive global anthropogenic climate destabilization’. The ‘warming trend’ is but one small part of the larger chemical and environmental disequilibrium we have introduced.

    Point being, we have affected the acidity of the oceans threatening the base trophic layer there, disrupted storms and precipitation patterns, turned off the jet stream cooling England and Europe, affected sea level rise, etc… AS WELL AS warming the planet.

    Warming is but one symptom of a much larger problem for the *entire* ecosphere — and I would argue — possibly not the most destructive (I would say ocean acidification is the greatest immediate threat).

    Please don’t be fooled by labels and recognize the entire scale of the causes and problems that ensue (as I am sure you do when writing at length).

    1. If it wasn’t humans, it would have been something else.  

      Don’t you know anything about the history of our planet?
      Life wouldn’t have evolved into it’s many modern forms without mass extinctions.
      And do you think you have any power to do anything about it?
      Your alarmist reasoning will change nothing.
      Humans aren’t capable of co-operating to the level required to halt or change any potential catastrophic effects.   Resign yourself and make the best of it.

  9. snow here a week ago, 90+ degrees yesterday — I know, CC isn’t causing extreme warming necessarily, it can only be expected to bring statistically more extreme change

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