The Blob is back: Will the RRR return? What about drought in CA?

This decade, the worst drought in California’s recorded history happened in large part due to a formidable ridge of high pressure off the shores of the Pacific Northwest in 2012 that persisted for years in the winter months. This bumped the winter jetstream that brings us low pressure systems and precipitation to the north and awayContinue reading “The Blob is back: Will the RRR return? What about drought in CA?”

Climate change polarizes an election in Ojai

Ojai, California is a little town with a lot of big opinions. This fall an election between a long-standing incumbent and a self-educated water wonk has stirred up a good deal of controversy. Here’s my attempt to report on the issues for the Ventura County Reporter. My focus was to give the candidates a chanceContinue reading “Climate change polarizes an election in Ojai”

Insurers see new risks, markets w/climate change

From the Wall Street Journal, a new series debuts today: The Price of Climate Insurers’ most immediate climate peril is water. More heat means more moisture held in the atmosphere and greater precipitation. Melting ice is pushing up sea levels. A 2013 study in the journal Nature projected average flood losses for the world’s 136Continue reading “Insurers see new risks, markets w/climate change”

Trump admin expects 7 degrees warming

In an obscure government report this week, the Trump administration forecasts global temperatures will rise an average of seven degrees around the world by 2100. As the Washington Post, which broke the story, put it: Last month, deep in a 500-page environmental impact statement, the Trump administration made a startling assumption: On its current course, theContinue reading “Trump admin expects 7 degrees warming”

Puttering about in a Small Land (Philip K. Dick book review)

Ojai through the eyes of a great American writer Philip K. Dick, now widely considered the most brilliant of all science fiction writers, wrote hundreds of extraordinarily imaginative stories and forty-four novels, and — like an innovative artist who only becomes famous after his death — in recent years has had his work splashed acrossContinue reading “Puttering about in a Small Land (Philip K. Dick book review)”

Heat to blast SoCal: Fire Weather

It’s going to be crazy hot the next couple of days here in Ojai (112 on Friday they say) and in coastal Southern California this weekend. In the words of Weather West (aka climate scientist Daniel Swain): …in Los Angeles and Santa Barbara counties, especially, the heat from Fri-Sun will be extreme due to theContinue reading “Heat to blast SoCal: Fire Weather”

SoCal is losing its cool (the clouds)

On the eve of a hellacious heat wave — up to 110 this weekend they say — here’s a new fact to contemplate about life in Southern California. We’re losing our cool. Physically, that is. We’re losing clouds and fog in summer over our heads, according to scientific studies and meteorological observations. Here’s the lead from aContinue reading “SoCal is losing its cool (the clouds)”

Why so many old-timers don’t see climate change as a problem

The climate is changing all across the country and around the world, but in traditional communities, people often refuse to accept the evidence of its workings, even if demonstrated by scientists. Along this line a story in The New Yorker — called Tangier, the sinking island in the Chesapeake — profiles Mayor James Eskridge, a long-time crabberContinue reading “Why so many old-timers don’t see climate change as a problem”

“The fire had me fully terrified” — T.C. Boyle on the Thomas Fire (and more)

For the Ojai Quarterly [pdf], yours truly had the opportunity to talk to T.C. Boyle about the Thomas fire, debris flows, climate change, and other scary realities of the 21st Century. The interview also motivated me to catch up on some past works of Boyle’s, and boy was that worth the reading. Check it out:Continue reading ““The fire had me fully terrified” — T.C. Boyle on the Thomas Fire (and more)”