Five Climate-Change Claims as Ridiculous as Sharknado
“Sharknado 2: The Second One” is poised to take a bite out of Manhattan and devour many of the week’s water-cooler conversations. Like the first “Sharknado” movie, the premise is so ridiculous it actually manages to entertain.
In the same way, some media claims about what climate change has already done or threatens to do in the future are so absurd they’re actually laughable. Climate-change alarmists have linked global warming to practically everything, heatwaves, snowstorms, droughts, floods, hurricanes and many things far more ridiculous. Here are just five of the most wacky, as wacky as Ian Ziering fighting a tornado of sharks with a chainsaw:
1. No More Red Hair Because of Climate Change
Claims that redheads could go “extinct” in Scotland “as the country warms up” circulated in July 2014. The Daily Mail (UK) along with several other British newspapers and even ABC “World News” reported the claim.
“World News” anchor Diane Sawyer said on July 8, “A new report says redheads might one day be extinct. It turns out the genes for red hair and pale skin were nourished over centuries in the cloudy weather of Scotland and Ireland. When climate change brings an end to cool mist, the climate for red hair will also disappear.”
The story was so absurd The Washington Post and the left-wing eco-activists at Grist.org called it out. Grist said the assumptions used to claim climate change would spell the end of redhair were either “questionable, flat-out wrong, or appear to have been the result of misquotations.”
2. ‘Some experts’ Claim 2008 Increase in UFO Sightings ‘Could Be Linked to Global Warming’
In 2008, there was an uptick in UFO sightings in Great Britain, according to The Telegraph (UK). It was a strange enough news story that moved quickly from odd to off-the-wall. The “bizarre” levels of UFO sightings were linked to global warming.
Laura Clout wrote on July 7, 2008, “Some experts believe it could be linked to global warming and craft from outer space are appearing because they are concerned about what man is doing to this planet."
It was unclear whether that quote was from Malcolm Robinson of Strange Phenomena Investigations or another source.
3. Senator Warns Winter Sports, Stadiums Threatened by Climate Change
In November 2013, Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I., said hockey, skiing and sports “palaces” were all at risk of climate change.
"We see significant sports facilities, the palaces of - of sport that are at risk from the storm, climate, sea-level rise effects of climate change," Whitehouse said following a Nov. 25, 2013, closed-door climate discussion with executives from the NFL, NHL and NBA.
He added, “Without cold enough weather for frozen ponds, the kind of hockey that you play out of doors with your friends gets a little bit harder to achieve.”
But even if Whitehouse was right about climate change eliminating frozen ponds, it wouldn’t be the end of hockey. In fact, wouldn’t that mean a boom in demand for indoor hockey arenas?
4. Global Warming Will Make Earth Spin Faster
No joke. In 2007, a scientist claimed global warming would increase the spin rate of the planet Earth.
Felix Landerer of the Max Planck Institute for Meteorology in Hamburg, Germany warned that warming oceans will cause the overall mass distribution of water on the globe to shift from the equator to the poles, according to the Scientific American.
Allegedly, if enough of this water shifted it would cause the Earth to spin slightly faster -- by .12 milliseconds over 200 years. However, the same Scientific American article pointed out, there were other factors that could "partly cancel out this effect."
On top of that, the website New Scientist noted that "the influence of the tidal friction of the Earth-moon system" actually "slows our planet down by 2.3 milliseconds every 100 years." So, even if this hypothesis were true, the effect of the moon on the Earth is 38 times stronger in the opposite direction.
5. Italy’s Pasta in Danger
Uh oh. Italy’s national food is under threat, or soon would be, according to The Australian in November 2009.
Citing the Met Office of Britain, The Australian warned that durum yields in Italy could begin to decline in 2020 and practically disappear “later this century.” Of course, with a projection that far ahead of time it won’t be disprovable for several more years. However, the Met Office has some problems with its track record of forecasts.
The Spectator (UK) said in 2013 that the Met Office had been corrupted by “ideology” and “ for 12 of the last 13 years, the Met’s temperature forecast has been too high.”
— Julia A. Seymour is Assistant Managing Editor for MRC Business at the Media Research Center. Follow Julia A. Seymour on Twitter.