Cuccinelli and Future Flood Damage in Virginia

August 28, 2013 at 5:19 pm | Posted in Abuse of Office, Enemies of Planet Earth, Global warming | Leave a comment
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Flooding of Crisfield, Maryland by Hurricane Sandy.  Photo taken on 30 October 2012 by the Maryland National Guard, Uploaded by Dough4872 .

Flooding of Crisfield, Maryland by Hurricane Sandy. Photo taken on 30 October 2012 by the Maryland National Guard, Uploaded by Dough4872 .

The drumbeat of news items carries a message that we can no longer avoid hearing.  Rising sea levels, vanishing ice, wild fires, extreme storms.  The climate is changing with unnatural speed.  Human activity is warming our planet.  For recent examples, see here and here .

Tidewater Virginia will suffer greatly: Virginia Beach, Norfolk, Newport News, and Hampton.  So will many other parts of Virginia.

Aerial views during an Army search and rescue mission show damage from Hurricane Sandy to the New Jersey coast, Oct. 30, 2012. The soldiers are assigned to the 1-150 Assault Helicopter Battalion, New Jersey Army National Guard. U.S. Air Force photo by Master Sgt. Mark C. Olsen.

Aerial views during an Army search and rescue mission show damage from Hurricane Sandy to the New Jersey coast, Oct. 30, 2012. The soldiers are assigned to the 1-150 Assault Helicopter Battalion, New Jersey Army National Guard. U.S. Air Force photo by Master Sgt. Mark C. Olsen.

This is pertinent because Terry McAuliffe and Ken Cuccinelli are competing to be the next Governor of Virginia.

Creepy Cuccinelli’s record on climate change is not based on evidence.  He believes only what he wants to hear.  He believes only what it is politically convenient for him to hear.  He is James Inhofe east.

If he had been interested in evidence, he would not have tried to bully and discredit Michael Mann, a climate scientist who was then at the University of Virginia.

If Cuccinelli had been interested in evidence, he would not – Putin like – have tried to intimidate the scientific community.

If Cuccinelli had been interested in evidence, he would have protected the freedom of academic inquiry, instead of trying to squelch it.

(These attempts by Cuccinelli to earn political brownie points earned him the adjective ‘Creepy’ in front of his name.)

The data now confirm what climate scientists had calculated:  global warming will cause sea levels to rise, thereby flooding some coastal areas year round, and also increasing hurricane damage to nearby areas that aren’t permanently flooded.

Inevitably:

In Virginia Beach, in Norfolk, in Newport News and in Hampton, everyone’s insurance will go up.

In Virginia Beach, in Norfolk, in Newport News and in Hampton, everyone’s property values will go down.

Damage from Hurrican Sandy in Wyncote, Cheltenham Township, Pennsylvania, USA, photographed by Peetlesnumber1 .

Damage from Hurrican Sandy in Wyncote, Cheltenham Township, Pennsylvania, USA, photographed by Peetlesnumber1 .

In Virginia Beach, in Norfolk, in Newport News and in Hampton, the interest rates on new mortgages will rise, to cover the increased risk to the lender.

In Virginia Beach, in Norfolk, in Newport News and in Hampton, more houses and commercial buildings will be flooded by storms, and more will be wrecked.
More farmland will be ruined.  More cars will be ruined.

Flooding in Marblehead, Massachusetts, caused by Hurricane Sandy, photographed 29 October 2012 by the Birkes.

Flooding in Marblehead, Massachusetts, caused by Hurricane Sandy, photographed 29 October 2012 by the Birkes.

In Virginia Beach, in Norfolk, in Newport News and in Hampton, more people and animals will die or be injured by storms.

Damage caused by Hurricane Sandy to the New Jersey coast photographed during a search and rescue mission by 1-150 Assault Helicopter Battalion, New Jersey Army National Guard, Oct. 30, 2012. (This appears to be Casino Pier, Seaside Heights, New Jersey.)  Photographed by Master Sgt. Mark C. Olsen/U.S. Air Force/New Jersey National Guard.

Damage caused by Hurricane Sandy to the New Jersey coast photographed during a search and rescue mission by 1-150 Assault Helicopter Battalion, New Jersey Army National Guard, Oct. 30, 2012. (This appears to be Casino Pier, Seaside Heights, New Jersey.) Photographed by Master Sgt. Mark C. Olsen/U.S. Air Force/New Jersey National Guard.

The same is true for Chesapeake and for Suffolk.

The same is true for Chincoteague and for Wallops, for Smith Island and for all of the islands that extend north east of it.  If the ponies on Chincoteague could vote, they would be well advised to vote against Cuccinelli.

Prime Hook National Wildlife Refuge (Delaware) experienced extensive flooding during Hurricane Sandy. This photo shows a before and after of the beach between the Prime Hook Beach community and Slaughter Beach, 2 November 2012. Credit: US Fish and Wildlife Service.

Prime Hook National Wildlife Refuge (Delaware) experienced extensive flooding during Hurricane Sandy. This photo shows a before and after of the beach between the Prime Hook Beach community and Slaughter Beach, 2 November 2012. Credit: US Fish and Wildlife Service.

The same is true for all of Accomack and Northampton, and westward across the bay to Gloucester, Lancaster, and Northumberland.

Jamestown, Williamsburg and Yorktown are on low ground in Virginia’s Tidewater.  They are vulnerable to damage by storms.  Irreplaceable historical sites and objects may be irretrievably lost.

New Jersey National Guard Soldiers assist displaced residents at the town of Hoboken Oct. 31. (U.S. Army photo by Spc. Joseph Davis/Released). Source: New Jersey National Guard, Uploaded by Dough4872 .

New Jersey National Guard Soldiers assist displaced residents at the town of Hoboken Oct. 31. (U.S. Army photo by Spc. Joseph Davis/Released). Source: New Jersey National Guard, Uploaded by Dough4872 .

Rivers swollen by a low-moving hurricane could flood Westmoreland, including Stratford Hall Plantation, and also the birthplace of George Washington.  They could innundate Colonial Beach, Dahlgren, and Quantico.  Flooding can reach well inland.

Flooding isn’t global warming’s only threat to lives and livelihoods in Virginia.  The increase in fires is now obvious.  In fact, for the second year in a row, the Federal budget for fighting wildfires hasn’t been sufficient.  Extreme drought is also more likely.  So agriculture everywhere in Virginia will be under stress.

A California wildfire, photographed by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management.

A California wildfire, photographed by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management.

Sheep on a drought-affected paddock near Uranquinty, photographed 14 February 2009 by Bidgee.

Sheep on a drought-affected paddock near Uranquinty, photographed 14 February 2009 by Bidgee.

Much of that will happen now no matter what, because we have waited so long to temper global warming.

But it will be much worse if there is further delay.

If Ken Cuccinelli becomes Governor, further delay is guaranteed.
Ken Cuccinelli is willfully blind to the effects of global warming.
He has backed himself into a political corner.
He would lose face if he admitted that global warming is real and poses real threats.
Rather than pay the political price of that admission, Cuccinelli would prefer to have Tidewater Virginia end up looking like New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina.

Of the two candidates for Governor of Virginia, only Terry McAuliffe would have Virginia prepare to mitigate the damage that will undoubtedly be caused by climate change.

Maybe that is why the Virginia Association of Realtors endorsed Terry McAuliffe rather than Cuccinelli.  Tempering the effects of global warming would reduce the damage to property values from flooding.

You cannot boost Virginia’s economy in the long term by increasing the vulnerability of homes, businesses and agricultural land to destruction by flooding.  (Also, the Editors of the Washington Post found that Cuccinelli’s plans for boosting the economy were based on fuzzy math.)

If you live in Virginia, voting for Cuccinelli would be voting against your own future.  Your lives and health and health are at stake.  So are those of your children, pets and livestock.  So is the value of your property – your house, land, business, and car.  And so are the historic sites at which we refresh our knowledge of who we are.

More than coastal Virginia is threatened by global warming.  Agriculture is threatened everywhere in the state.

Anyone wanting to protect their future should ask Cuccinelli about his past and present views on climate change, and about his attempts to bully Michael Mann and the climate science community.

 

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