Thursday, 3 January 2013

Lacy covers and garden produce...

This week the weather predictions are dire for the garden...


... today is that Thursday mentioned above and it is currently (at 2.30pm) 41.5 C (more than 106 F) on my shady south facing verandah.  It remains 28 C (82 F) inside.  It will gradually creep up in here as these days go by.  (Update at 3.45:  42.5C  -  108.5F)  

The garden is watered and covered for the day...
... and I hope that most of it survives.

There is an interesting discussion of the climate situation for 2012 that is published by the Bureau of Meteorology and in that,  not only did we have a very hot year,  but we also had a very dry winter.  As I have mentioned previously, the rainfall here was only about 70% of our normal rainfall.  It is usual to hear people talking about this being the "new normal" for us.  Perhaps, as the CO2  level (now at 392.92 parts per million) increases and climate change accelerates, predictions are now that even people  of my age will live to see catastrophic weather events and climate refugees moving around the world, en masse. 

I have heard the sceptics discussing the reliability of the models and the likelihood of any dire effects in mh lifetime,  but in fact, to quote the IPCC, "...models are unanimous in their prediction of substantial climate warming under greenhouse gas increases, and this warming is of a magnitude consistent with independent estimates derived from other sources, such as from observed climate changes and past climate reconstructions."
The whole article is here.

Weather is not the same as climate, but with the consistently increasing temperature, and increasing acidification of the ocean,  is it really worth the risk?

The IPCC meets regularly and its website reads like any other disfunctional organisation with instructions oon how to present information, lists of calendar dates and meetings,  but nothing has actually been achieved yet.  We've had Rio, Kyoto, Copenhagen, Bali and more and these meetings are becoming less and less influential as they become bogged down in protocols and reports.  Nothing si actually being done about behavioural change other than to change the method of production of electricity and CO2  and no decrease in the actual use of fuel and energy and the real production of CO2.     

It seems that the only way that behavioural change will occur will be when there is not money to be made from the activities that are producing the assortment of 'greenhouse gasses" that are affecting the change in the climate of the earth.  There are many commentators now predicting that it will take the collapse of the economic system to rescue the climate,  if indeed that is possible.  This seems likely as there are also discussions about how the UN climate negotiations are threatening economic growth.  It appears that "climate worriers" and those who are concerned with "the future of human prosperity" can agree on this... that doing anything effective about climate change (or even proposing changes to our use of fuels) does threaten economic growth.  

It seems that James Lovelock may have been correct.  It doesn't matter what humans do in the overall scheme of things,  the earth will survive even if our species doesn't.

So, as I prepare for the rest of the week, leaving much of the garden fallow and mulched and the little bit that I use in summer watered and covered in its lacy shawl, I hope that some of it will survive.  I also plan my winter garden when, despite shorter hours of daylight, productivity is increased. Even tomatoes can't set fruit at high temperatures and it is just too hot for summer vegetables.

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