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Old Posted Sep 20, 2019, 3:50 PM
iheartthed iheartthed is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: New York
Posts: 5,020
Climate change is really only half the story. The other half of the story is that we built a lot of cities in places that were probably always living on borrowed time, even without climate change. Reliable weather records only go back about 140 years, but these are the records that are used to set the standard for all of our building codes, land surveys, etc. The New World has only been known to Europeans, Africans, and Asians for about 500 years. Some of these cities have been built in places that experience mass devastation events on average of every 400, 500, 1000 years. Since our records only cover about a century, we're completely vulnerable to anything that happens on a less frequent pattern.

Then there's climate change, which is speeding up the frequency of intense, destructive weather events (e.g. "500 year events"). Category 5 hurricanes hitting the Caribbean or mainland North America used to be a less frequent event, and probably was legitimately a 100 year event when European explorers first reached North America. Now it's an every other year event.

Per Wikipedia:

Only in six seasons—1932, 1933, 1961, 2005, 2007 and 2017—has more than one Category 5 hurricane formed. Only in 2005 have more than two Category 5 hurricanes formed, and only in 2007 and 2017 did more than one make landfall at Category 5 strength.[1] The years 2016 through 2019 are the longest sequence of consecutive years which all featured at least one Category 5 hurricane each.