This week two more people died in more flooding that damaged even more counties in Western Wisconsin.
Experts for years have been predicting severe rain events as a consequence of a rapidly warming climate.
A recent national report's summary, with multiple charts:
Heavy downpours are increasing nationally, especially over the last three to five decades. Largest increases are in the Midwest and Northeast. Increases in the frequency and intensity of extreme precipitation events are projected for all U.S. regionsAnd a separate, UW Sea Grant Institute report said:
As warmer temperatures increase evaporation and the amount water vapor in the atmosphere rise worldwide, the air will become more saturated, increasing humidity levels year round. This means when it does rain or snow, it’s likely to be in very large amounts.
All of this means Wisconsin can expect an increase in extreme heat waves and more frequent droughts in summer. At the same time, severe thunderstorms may double in frequency, increasing the amounts of damage caused by heavy rainfall, flashfloods, hail and strong tornadoes.But Wisconsin under Scott Walker, Attorney General Brad Schimel and other GOP state officials are officially hostile to climate change - - in the extreme - - and obeisant to the fossil fuel sector whose greenhouse gas emissions are also fueling the warming climate.
Walker and other Wisconsin GOP officials lined up to sign a Koch brothers pledge opposing climate change initiatives if they cost one new net cent.
Then the list got bigger:
The pledge has more that 400 signers, including Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson, U.S. Reps. Sean Duffy, Reid Ribble and Jim Sensenbrenner, state Sens. Alberta Darling, Glenn Grothman, Mary Lazich and Leah Vukmir, and state Reps. Dale Kooyenga, Bill Kramer, Jim Ott and Don Pridemore, all Republicans.So when the deluge subsides, Walker can calm the waters temporally and pantomime some chief executive moves with hand-shaking and damage tours, and state officials can fill in all the necessary forms for assistance from the Federal Government they say on all other occasions is too big and well-heeled.
But a lot of that federal aid and whatever scarce state dollars Walker can throw into the pot will literally go down the drain during the next heavy rain event until and unless the state gets serious about respecting and merging solid science with infrastructure planning and adaptation that could minimize future damage.
And save lives.
And as we say, get with the program and stop being the State in the State of Denial.
Update: Take a look at what a real state leaders is doing.