After four hurricanes slammed the state of Florida last summer and fall, many are wondering if the storms are a result of global warming. New reports suggest global warming is reaching a critical stage and may be irreversible, but a local scientist is not convinced.
In a recent report, "Meeting the Climate Challenge,” G-8 industrialized nations are urged to cut vehicle emissions and increase spending for innovative ways to curb global warming, but Florida in contrast to the globe as a whole actually has cooled a bit.
Dr. James O'Brien, State of Florida Climatologist, says, "The reason why Florida is actually colder than it was years ago, not too much colder, just a couple of degrees, is because we made wetlands into farmland and it changes the way radiation happens and stuff like that."
The entire planet has warmed around one degree Celsius in the last 200 years or so, but is this planetary warming responsible for all of the hurricanes as some have suggested?
O'Brien says, "After three hurricanes hit Florida last year, Tony Blair came out and said it was all due to global warming. I've talked to all the experts that are hurricane researchers, none of them agree at all that it is."
Those who fear that we'll be in for constant hurricanes every year may be happy to hear that it's unlikely to be the case.
O'Brien says, "I don't think we're going to see this from year to year. It's definitely not due to global warming."
So at least for now, according to Florida State's climatologist, residents can breathe a sigh of relief.
The last time four hurricanes struck a single state was back in Texas in 1886.