Who Will be the First to Blame Global Warming?

Posted on Wed 02/02/2011 by


Andrew BoltBy Andrew Bolt

In an almost certainly doomed attempt to head off the “global-warming-caused-Cyclone-Yasi” meme, here’s an extract from the Bureau of Meteorology site:

On average 4.7 tropical cyclones per year affect the Queensland Tropical Cyclone Warning Centre Area of Responsibility. There is a strong relationship with eastern Australian tropical cyclone impacts and the El Niño-Southern Oscillation phenomenon, with almost twice as many impacts during La Niña than during El Niño…

There have been 207 known impacts from tropical cyclones along the east coast since 1858. Major east coast tropical cyclones impacts include 1890 Cardwell; 1893 Brisbane; 1898 NSW; 1899 Bathurst Bay; 1918 Innisfail; 1918 Mackay; 1927 Cairns and inland areas; 1934 Port Douglas; 1949 Rockhampton; 1954 Gold Coast; 1967 Dinah, Southern Queensland; 1970 Ada, Whitsunday Islands; 1971 Althea, Townsville; 1974 Wanda, Brisbane; and 2006 Larry, Innisfail.

The Queensland region of the Gulf of Carpentaria region has been hit by several disastrous tropical cyclones. These include The 1887 Burketown cyclone, The 1923 Douglas Mawson cyclone, The 1936 Mornington Island cyclone; the 1948 Bentick Island cyclone and Ted in 1976.

Some of the worst on the Queensland coast:

10 March 1918

This tropical cyclone is widely regarded as the worst cyclone to hit a populated area of Queensland. It crossed the coast and passed directly over Innisfail. The pen on the Post Office barograph was prevented from registering below 948 hPa by the flange on the bottom of the drum… In Innisfail, then a town of 3,500 residents, only around 12 houses remained intact… Recent reports suggest that 37 people died at Innisfail while 40 – 60 lost their lives in nearby areas…

9 February 1927

This tropical cyclone crossed the coast just to the north of Cairns… A total of 47 people lost their lives…

12 March 1934

This tropical cyclone crossed the coast near Cape Tribulation with a 9.1 m storm surge at nearby Bailey Creek destroying banana plantations. The Pearling fleet just off the coast near Cape Tribulation was devastated with many luggers and 75 lives lost …


Too late, says reader Diogenes, who spots the first scoundrel, And, yes, it’s the party led by the rank opportunist who blamed coal miners for the Brisbane floods:

The Australian Greens say Tropical Cyclone Yasi is a “tragedy of climate change”… Greens deputy leader Christine Milne says the cyclone is another example of why it is important to cut carbon pollution.

Shameless, or merely very, very stupid?


There’s something ghoulish, even sick, about the Greens hanging around every disaster scene, crying “repent your sins!”. Before Bob Brown and Christine Milne make an even greater spectacle of themselves, I’d ask some Greens staffer to print off this page from the Bureau of Meteorology website and stick it under their leaders’ noses. It shows, if anything, a trend to fewer cyclones in Australia – and stresses the fact that they are more frequent during La Ninas, which we now have again:

Further down that page:

Since that time [IPCC report 2001] there has been a growing number of studies that indicate a consistent signal of fewer tropical cyclones globally in a warmer climate.

I’ll say it again: scoundrels.


Reader John McMahon:

You omitted to mention Tropical Cyclone Mahina, which hit Princess Charlotte Bay/Bathurst Bay on 4th March 1899. Todate it has been Australia’s most severe cyclone and was a Category 5 also, killing over 400 people.

Jonathan Nott of James Cook University and Matthew Hayne of the Australia Geological Survey Organisation describe it:

Tropical Cyclone Mahina was the most intense tropical cyclone to cross the Australian coast in historical times. Its central pressure was recorded by barometer at 27 inches (914hPa) as the eye approached the coast at Bathurst Bay (Figure 1) at approximately 4.30 am on the 22nd March 1899 (Whittingham 1958)…

One of the most interesting aspects of this event was the eyewitness report of a 43 foot (13m) surge at Ninian Bay adjacent to Barrow Point 30 km south of Bathurst Bay which extended inland for 2–3 miles (3–5 km). Constable Kenny, camped on a ridge fully 40 foot above sea level, was inundated to his waist by a ‘tidal wave’ (storm surge and associated ephemeral sea level rise) at his camp site
some 0.5 miles (800m) inland at approximately 5 am (Anonymous 1899). This account suggests this surge was the largest ever recorded in Australia.

Cyclone Yasi’s central pressure is going to run Mahina’s 914hPa close:

Central Pressure: 924 hPa


Jon Faine on Melbourne 774 ABC insists it’s global warming that’s bringing these floods and cyclones, and gets alarmist Graeme Pearman telling him we’ve never had so many intense tropical cyclones.

Ryan Maue confronts the ideologues with the facts about cyclone activity lately:

Maue sums up:

For the calendar-year 2010:

**66-tropical cyclones globally, the fewest in the reliable record (since at least 1970)
**46-tropical cyclones in the Northern Hemisphere, fewest since 1977
**Global calendar year ACE total of 529 was the lowest since 1977.
**The Northern Hemisphere ACE total of 373 was the lowest since 1977.
**Combined North Eastern and Western Pacific ACE total of 171 lowest since at least 1970.
**Western North Pacific had 8 Typhoons fewest in at least 65-years of records.
**Eastern North Pacific had 8 TCs: 3 were hurricanes, the fewest since at least 1970.
**North Atlantic ACE for 2010 was 170, the 11th most since 1950, and most since 2005.

Andrew Bolt is a journalist and columnist writing for The Herald Sun in Melbourne Victoria Australia.

Andrew Bolt’s columns appear in Melbourne’s Herald Sun, Sydney’s Daily Telegraph and Adelaide’s Advertiser. He runs the most-read political blog in Australia and is a regular commentator on Channel 9′s Today show and ABC TV’s Insiders. He will be heard from Monday to Friday at 8am on the breakfast show of new radio station MTR 1377, and his book Still Not Sorry remains very widely read.

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