Get used to droughts, hurricanes, heat waves, and wildfires, scientists warned Congress today, because the extreme weather is a result of global warming. The comments were made to the Senate's environmental committee during the first hearing on the subject in more than two years, reports the Guardian. "There is no doubt that climate has changed," declared a lead scientist from the UN's climate body, the IPCC. "There is also no doubt that a changing climate changes the risks of extremes, including extremes that can lead to disaster."
He said the US had 14 billion-dollar disasters last year, up from the previous record of nine. Another researcher, a Harvard oceanographer, said sea levels are rising nearly three times faster than scientists believed a decade ago. Unsurprisingly, the proceedings turned contentious at times, as Republican Sen. Jim Inhofe told the committee, "The global warming movement has completely collapsed." Indeed, the Guardian notes that there's zero chance of passing legislation on climate change in the current Congress. Democrat Barbara Boxer said she felt compelled to hold the hearing anyway.