Does climate change cause extreme weather like the heat waves much of the country has been enduring for the past few weeks?
Climate and weather scientists are cautious about saying that one extreme weather event is irrefutably caused by climate change, but most agree that a warmer planet will cause a higher frequency of extreme-weather events--even if you can't scientifically prove that one single extreme-weather event is caused by climate change. The heat waves across the country, wildfires in Colorado and elsewhere, and the "super derecho" storms that hit the Washington area and the rest of the Midwest and Mid-Atlantic regions are thrusting this debate into the spotlight again. It's been a reoccurring topic for the last couple of years as more extreme weather seems to crop up each summer.
Is there a direct link from climate change caused by human activity and use of fossil fuels to extreme weather? What kind of research or studies should be done, if any, to determine a connection? Will this kind of extreme weather prompt action by the Obama administration or Congress to take action on climate change?