Extreme Weather

Weather is one of world most common small talk topic. It is something everybody can relate to. At the same time we don’t consciously think too much about it, it’s not very exciting, except when the weather is good, whatever that might mean to someone. Weather has it’s own cycles. But the cycles are changing, so should we.


I can remember 3 extreme weather experiences in my life.

When I write this blog, I’m in the middle of my extreme weather experience, there is storm ”Daedalus” outside, it’s 26th of October 2017. I don’t dare to charge my laptop, in this beautiful old Venetian style house, because of the thunderstorm. All the shops in my old town street are closed. All the doves are covering themselves under the roof of the church that I see from my window. It’s quiet, except the rain and thunder. I’m happy that I went to groceries shopping yesterday, as it’s pouring rain. It’s extreme weather in Crete. I use "extreme weather" meaning the weather that is somewhere where it is not common, making life of the local people difficult. But if in Finland, that would be normal autumn weather. But here i’m alert, nervous, this is not how it supposed to be here. The streets are flooding badly.


Chania, Crete, Greece

Photo from http://www.chaniapost.eu/2017/10/26/daedalus-storm-more-photos-of-what-happened-in-chania/

Photo from http://www.chaniapost.eu/2017/10/26/daedalus-storm-more-photos-of-what-happened-in-chania/

Photo from http://www.chaniapost.eu/2017/10/26/daedalus-storm-more-photos-of-what-happened-in-chania/

Photo from http://www.chaniapost.eu/2017/10/26/daedalus-storm-more-photos-of-what-happened-in-chania/

Photo from http://www.chaniapost.eu/2017/10/26/daedalus-storm-more-photos-of-what-happened-in-chania/

There is this new term in use that I have bumped into many times during the last month, Anthropocene, Here below is how it is described.


The Anthropocene defines Earth's most recent geologic time period as being human-influenced, or anthropogenic, based on overwhelming global evidence that atmospheric, geologic, hydrologic, biospheric and other earth system processes are now altered by humans.


The word combines the root "anthropo", meaning "human" with the root "-cene", the standard suffix for "epoch" in geologic time.


The Anthropocene is distinguished as a new period either after or within the Holocene, the current epoch, which began approximately 10,000 years ago (about 8000 BC) with the end of the last glacial period.

Source: The Encyclopedia of Earth.

https://editors.eol.org/eoearth/wiki/Anthropocene


Also I found term Capitalocene.


Moore suggests using Capitalocene as an alternative to Anthropocene. As the Guardian reports, a recent study shows that 100 companies are responsible for 71 percent of the greenhouse-gas emissions since 1998. While almost all people play some role in the degradation of the environment, climate change is also something done to people by other people. It isn’t humanity as such that is responsible, but the specific forms of production and consumption that are the basis of the capitalist Western world.

Source http://www.slate.com/articles/technology/future_tense/2017/07/why_climate_change_discussions_need_apocalyptic_thinking.html


My first encounter with extreme weather was when I was maybe 3-4 years old. I was in South Estonia at my grandmothers house. It’s a region where there were always lot’s of thunderstorms at the summer. The house had electricity in, but not running water. I was in living room with my sister and grandmother. We saw how the wallpaper got black along the electric wire that lead to the ceiling lamp. When it reached the lamp, ball of bright light came out of it. Ball lightning. I was standing next to the lamp and looking at this approx. 20cm radius bright ball. And then it was "sucked" up back into the lamp. I remember the feeling that I had experienced something very exciting. I had no idea how dangerous the situation had been.

Sartaneja, Belize

Second time that I remember was in Belize few years back. We were traveling from Belize City to Sartaneja village. The bus, old American style bus, was packed with people and it was humid. The road was flooded. At some point the bus stopped and driver went out, the water level was above his knees. He hopped back to the bus, and we continued our way. I was comforted by Siim that he must know what he is doing, he is local, they are used to it. We were like on a boat slowly riding through the murky water, and we made it to Sartaneja. Just to learn that ours was the last bus that made it through and that there are lots of crocodiles in the area looking for a new hunting places in the flooded areas. Locals were not used to that kind of flooding.


Now I’m here. The house that I live in is leaking from 4 spots, it has been pouring rain for at least 12 hours and there seems no end to it. Weather is changing and so should we.


Welcome to Anthropocene