Thursday morning, I woke up to this from the AAS…
In the latest sign of how dry the recent drought has been, Lower Colorado River Authority officials announced Wednesday that the flow of water from streams and creeks into the Colorado River over the past six months is worse than any similar period during the worst-ever drought.
The flow from Oct. 1 through March 31 totaled 96,350 acre-feet. The average inflow during any given month between 1947 and 1952, known as the drought of record, was about 43,300 acre-feet, or 260,000 acre-feet over a six-month period, according to LCRA officials.
An acre-foot is roughly equal to the amount of water required to cover a football field a foot deep — nearly 326,000 gallons.
“These numbers are startling,” said Mark Jordan, the LCRA’s manager of river management services. April to date has 6 percent of its average in-flow.
Now, this isn’t a global warming diatribe because it’s completely unnecessary. The science around climate change is settled and the only people who think otherwise are usually ‘scientists’ on the payroll (though some intermediary) of ExxonMobil, or receiving contributions from them. No, we may get rain next week, or next month and it may alleviate some problems. However, it’s not going to stop the inevitable which means that we’re in for a rough ride even as the planet switches over to cleaner energy sources because of what we’ve already pumped into the air. Climate projections indicate that we’ll see more violent weather so I have little doubt that we’ll eventually get rain but it’ll be less like the soaking we need and more like a flood and there probably won’t be enough of it.
Most projections for climate change in Texas show slightly wetter east and the rest of the state much drier, slowly turning into a desert. During the 2010 election campaign, Hank Gilbert talked extensively about the need for desalination plants on the coast to bring fresh water to what would eventually be parched areas of Texas. His proposal was cost effective, given the cost of construction vs the cost of impounding land under water in reservoirs that may or may not ever fill. One could even say the proposal was visionary, the idea of a Texan who, when confronted with a coming challenge, figured out a way to overcome it.
Instead, we get this…
With Texas in the throes of a terrible drought and wildfires raging across the state, Gov. Rick Perry designated April 22 to April 24 (the Easter weekend) as official days of prayer for rain.
No concrete plan to alleviate the problems, even as the state is overrun with fires and Republican budget cuts have hit fire departments around the state. Just an appeal to God.
Which reminded me of an old joke…
It had been raining for days and days, and a terrible flood had come over the land. The waters rose so high that one man was forced to climb onto the roof of his house.
As the waters rose higher and higher, a man in a rowboat appeared, and told him to get in. “No,” replied the man on the roof. “I have faith in the Lord; the Lord will save me.” So the man in the rowboat went away. The man on the roof prayed for God to save him.
The waters rose higher and higher, and suddenly a speedboat appeared. “Climb in!” shouted a man in the boat. “No,” replied the man on the roof. “I have faith in the Lord; the Lord will save me.” So the man in the speedboat went away. The man on the roof prayed for God to save him.
The waters continued to rise. A helicopter appeared and over the loudspeaker, the pilot announced he would lower a rope to the man on the roof. “No,” replied the man on the roof. “I have faith in the Lord; the Lord will save me.” So the helicopter went away.
The man on the roof prayed for God to save him.
The waters rose higher and higher, and eventually they rose so high that the man on the roof was washed away, and alas, the poor man drowned.
Upon arriving in heaven, the man marched straight over to God. “Heavenly Father,” he said, “I had faith in you, I prayed to you to save me, and yet you did nothing. Why?” God gave him a puzzled look, and replied “I sent you two boats and a helicopter, what more did you expect?”
Sometimes, God gives us the tools and the intelligence to use them to solve our own problems. In the case of Governor Perry, it’s pretty obvious he’s either ignoring them or doesn’t understand.