"The Angry Summer" March 6, 2013 : 9:01 PM

Australia just experienced their hottest summer in recorded history and their government is pointing to the climate crisis as one of the main culprits. From the New York Times:

“Climate change was a major driving force behind a string of extreme weather events that alternately scorched and soaked large sections of Australia in recent months, according to a report issued Monday by the government’s Climate Commission."

"A blistering four-month heat wave during the Australian summer culminated in January in bush fires that tore through the eastern and southeastern coasts of the country, where most Australians live. Those record-setting temperatures were followed by torrential rains and flooding in the more densely populated states of New South Wales and Queensland that left at least six people dead and caused roughly $2.43 billion in damage along the eastern seaboard…"

“I think one of the best ways of thinking about it is imagining that the base line has shifted,” Tim Flannery, the commission’s leader, told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. “If an athlete takes steroids, for example,” he said, “their base line shifts, they’ll do fewer slow times and many more record-breaking fast times.”

Flashback: At one point during the summer, it was so hot that Australian meteorologists had to redraw their temperature maps to accurately represent the scorching heat.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/damian-carrington-blog/2013/jan/08/australia-bush-fires-heatwave-temperature-scale