Years from now, people will ask how those of us living through the initial climate change felt about it. Did we realize it? Did it scare us? Did we decide to do something about it?
Or more likely, why did we do nothing?
Tornados, droughts and floods….all part of every day in the New World.
Ah but I’m sure the Friends of Coal and most of the rest of us will simply explain this as “coincidence.”
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The worst natural disaster in the United States since Hurricane Katrina just happened, and many in the mainstream media are already treating it like back page news. It can be really tempting to want to talk about whatever the next “news cycle” brings us, but right now we really need to pray for those affected by “the tornadoes of 2011”. There are parts of Alabama, Mississippi and Georgia that will never, ever be the same again. Entire towns have been wiped off the map. Hundreds are dead and thousands have been seriously injured. Over a million people lost power. One of the tornadoes that ripped through the region was reported to be a mile wide. How in the world are you supposed to get away from something like that once it is on top of you? Many in the mainstream media have already acknowledged that this was the worst natural disaster in the U.S. since Hurricane Katrina took 1,800 lives back in 2005. Over and over and over, those living in the region are describing the devastation by saying that they have “never seen anything like it”. This truly was one for the history books.
The F5 tornado that ripped through the Tuscaloosa, Alabama area was reportedly so monstrous that it is still kind of difficult to believe that it was actually real. The thing was a mile wide and scientists are estimating that it had winds that exceeded 260 miles an hour.
Can you even imagine the kind of devastation that we are talking about?
It is hard to even conceive of how much damage a mile-wide F5 tornado with winds of up to 260 MPH would do as it traveled across 300 miles.
Dozens are dead and close to a thousand people are injured in the city of Tuscaloosa alone.
A state of emergency has been declared in Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, Missouri, Oklahoma and Tennessee.
But this disaster will not be “cleaned up” in a few days or a few weeks.
This was literally a history changing event for millions of people.
The following is how an article posted on USA Today describes the devastation in the town of Smithville, Mississippi….
Powerful tornadoes swept through this northeastern Mississippi hamlet and across much of the South on Wednesday, splintering homes, shearing roofs and destroying lives. Smithville’s Town Hall was destroyed, as were the local high school, four churches and each of the town’s 14 businesses. Mattresses hung from tree branches, cars were flattened as if stepped on by giant feet, and rows of three-story pine trees snapped in half.
Do you think that Smithville will ever be the same?
Yes, the tornadoes of 2011 will be remembered for a very, very long time.
The people living in these areas deserve our prayers.
Thousands of lives have been permanently altered forever. The following is just one example that CNN reported on….
Janet Puckett stands outside what’s left of her home on 30th Avenue in Alberta. Its walls crumbled under the force of the storm. Her living room and a front bedroom disappeared. The roof of the house got sucked up, too.
“A war zone,” she says of the mountains of broken 2-by-4s and other debris all around.
How would you feel if your roof and half your house were suddenly missing?
Would you rebuild?
Would you feel safe living in the same area?
Would your life ever be the same again?
Sadly, massive tornado outbreaks seem to be happening with increasing frequency in the South.
Back on April 16th, a similar wave of very violent thunderstorms spawned approximately 140 tornadoes. During that event, 22 people were killed in the state of North Carolina.
Overall, there have been approximately 600 tornadoes in the United States during April. That is the most tornadoes that have ever been recorded in a single month.
Usually, the U.S. only experiences about 1,200 tornadoes for the entire year. So what we are seeing right now is highly unusual.
The tornadoes that just ripped through the South also had a massive impact on the economy down there.
Data issued Thursday by a consortium of national climate experts said 95 percent of Texas was suffering “severe drought,” or worse, up from 92 percent a week earlier. More than 70 percent of the state was in the worse conditions of “extreme drought” or “exceptional drought.” That is up from 68 percent a week ago in extreme and exceptional drought.
As if tornadoes and damaging thunderstorms were not enough, historic flooding is also threatening the Mississippi River, below St. Louis, as well as the lower part of the Ohio River.
The rising waters are expected to top levels set during February 1937. This mark is the middle Mississippi Valley’s equivalent to the 1993 event farther north along Old Man River.