Colorado Farm Show presentations frame current climate conditions #codrought

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From the La Junta Tribune Democrat (Candace Krebs):

Climate change is an inevitable and sometimes uncomfortable topic for popular weather experts hitting the speaking circuit at this year’s winter meetings…

The notion of climate change is generating frequent headlines these days. The U.S. Department of Agriculture fed into the ongoing speculation recently by issuing a widely circulated report on future climate projections with suggestions for adaptation strategies. The department is also accepting public comments on a new adaptation plan, announced as part of President Obama’s sustainability initiative for the federal government, which includes goals for reducing greenhouse gas emissions and increasing green power generation and fuel use.

Colorado State Climatologist Nolan Doesken said at his annual weather report presented during the Colorado Farm Show that he’s tended to downplay the prospect of manmade global warming since talk of it first started back in the 1980s. Back then, he recalled one farmer telling him gradually warmer temperatures were less of a concern than dramatic fluctuations. Flash forward to early 2013 and Doesken admits he has become more worried about the potential consequences of a warming climate and more uncertain about how easily farmers could adapt. “In 2012, the temperatures were pretty extreme,” he said. Notable heat waves struck in March and again in June. Only one year in history could rival it — 1934.

“If the computer models are anywhere close to right, 2012 will be an average year in just a few decades,” he added. “We don’t know what precipitation will do, but when we do have dry years, if the temperature is like this, we’ll have a lot of adapting to do.”[...]

Brian Bledsoe, KKTV chief meteorologist and private weather consultant from Colorado Springs who has appeared on some of the same panels with Doesken recently, remains skeptical of climate change theory though he prefers to avoid the subject because of how polarizing it has become. I simply can’t wrap my mind around the fact that the CO2 in the atmosphere is going to supersede all the stuff I’ve shown you today,” he said following a lengthy presentation on ocean temperature cycles and other long term trends at the High Plains No-Till Conference in Burlington. “The CO2 probably contributes something, but it is not a driver, in my opinion.”

In fact, on a global basis, the earth actually entered a cooling phase in 2000 as the sun began emitting less energy, he said. That mirrors a solar cycle that happened in the early 1800s. “We cooled as a planet,” said Bledsoe, who refers to himself as a weather historian. “We’re trending that way again.”
He also pointed to predictions made back in the 1950s that Florida would be underwater today.

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