Definitely In Like A Lion…

by Curt Kovener

Bob Dylan wrote and sang “The times they are a changin’.”
Today we should add “so is the weather.”
I have been on this earth nearly six decades with the ability to remember about the last five and a half of them and I can’t recall tornadoes raking the Hoosier landscape this early in the year. And granted that is a mere blink of the eye in the eons of time.
March 2 is still winter; the spring Solstice doesn’t begin until March 20. We’re supposed to be still worried about snowfall that gratefully we have not had more than a dusting of more three times.
In 1974 there was heavy tornado damage in Hanover and Madison. Then in my relative youth I remember some deadly Palm Sunday tornadoes in Indiana. Earlier this year there were tornado watches issued in January…a month when we are supposed to be preparing for significant accumulations of snow. Damaging cyclonic winds this early, I cannot recall.
In the past there was a tornado which scared Crothersville during the June Red, White & Blue festival and there have been several thunderbooming rainstorms at that time.
April through June has been the former normal time for tornadoes in Indiana. But, like the new economy with low interest rates being paid, I wonder if we are experiencing the “new normal” in weather patterns.
Ice in the northern arctic has melted so much that there is talk about exploring new shipping routes across the formerly frozen sea. Is thawing ice a part of a natural order? There are some who insist it is a part of a divine master plan. But science says we may have self-inflicted the weather changing tipping point. Some of us think that we humans may have had a significant contribution in the warming arctic.
Over the decades we have flushed down our drains, exhausted into our air, and buried in the earth all of our waste in a “out of sight, out of mind” mentality. We have abused our planet and Mother Nature isn’t happy about it and she is letting us know.
Just a few degrees difference in temperature can mean the difference in ice and open water. And the arctic winter seems to be not as cold or as long meaning winter won’t bring a re-freeze. And that same few degree change in temperature can have dramatic changes in our weather patterns. Meteorologists have said we will continue to have weather extremes.
The problem is that ice reflects solar rays back out into space while the dark blue waters of the sea absorb solar rays warming the water and melting more ice. Some would also say that new quicker arctic shipping lanes is conducive to shipping goods and therefore good for business and ultimately the economy.
There are many who refute arctic warming and its resulting impacts on our weather but mayhaps they would dispute the law of gravity or that tornadoes can occur in early March.
Here’s hoping the end of the month brings more lamb like weather.