by Andrew Walden
Al Gore treated the globe to “24 Hours of Reality” Wednesday and Thursday, but before the finale, Mother Nature stepped in with a show of her own.
As Hour Six opened from the Hilo, Hawaii offices of the Mauna Loa CO2 observatory, Hawaii Lieutenant Governor Brian Schatz warned ominously that Hawaii is “particularly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change.”
Schatz mentioned, “rising sea levels, impacts to marine and costal eco-systems, and impacts to our fresh water supply from encroachment of sea water into our aquifers.”
The Lieutenant Governor didn’t mention “summer snow”, but that is exactly what Hawaii received. By sunrise, the crown of Mauna Kea--clearly visible across the saddle from the CO2 observatory on Mauna Loa--was dusted with about an inch of the white stuff.
Time-lapse video taken in the tropical moonlight shows snowfall at the Mauna Kea Astronomical Observatories beginning about 3AM Thursday morning—Hour 14 of the Gore “Reality Show.”
Hawaii’s mountain peaks also received several inches of unusual June snow.
This image shows June 5, 2012 Mauna Kea snowcap visible on upper right from the CO2 observatory on Mauna Loa.
"Reality" presenters included Maxine Burkett, an Associate Professor of Law and Director of the Center for Island Climate Adaptation and Policy at the University of Hawaii. Questioned about Hawaii snow, Burkett had a ready explanation: BIVN reports Burkett “said that warmer air holds more moisture. We can expect to see more rains – and greater drought – if trends continue. And Burkett says that without immediate action, trends will continue.”
If this year’s trends continue, Hawaii will soon have snow during July and August.
On May 21, 2007, the late Augie Auer, Chief of the Meteorological Service of New Zealand, said of Global Warming: “We’re all going to survive this. It’s all going to be a joke in five years.”
His prediction has come true eight months early.
Related: June Snow in Hawaii
Time Lapse Mauna Kea Video: Thu Sep 15 2011
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