In discussions about climate change, I hear that "Don't worry, we'll adapt to it." and
"Mitigating climate change means returning to 19th century technology."
I'll leave aside whether the recent derecho represents climate change. And even more so the question of whether the change has a human fingerprint on it. I live in the national Capitol area for what is supposed to be the richest and most technologically advanced country on the earth. And many, large population, counties around me are among the wealthiest in the country. If any area should be well-adapted to current weather, forget to climate change, it is this area. Let's just consider events already in hand.
- Killed power for half the national Capitol area (1.5 million of about 3 million people lost power)
- Took down 911 (emergency -- life-threatening emergency -- phone service) in some counties
- Took down land line phone service in parts of the area
- Took down cell phone service in parts of the area
- 24 hours after the storm hit, about half of those who had lost power still didn't have it back
- The restoration of electricity to everybody is expected to take a week
- Registered only about 50 mph (about 22 m/s, 80 kph) winds in a span of 30-60 minutes at the official recording station (DCA), with gusts about 40% faster. (different figures in other parts of the country that were hit).
This wealthy area of a wealthy country is not adapted for weather it already gets on about an annual basis. It's nonsense to claim that "we'll adapt to climate change".
The power outages meant that large population did move back to largely 19th century technology -- no phone, no electric, some losing hot water (electric ignition to maintain the heater, sometimes hot water heating), no refrigeration, and so on. Failure to adapt to our weather means that we already experience that change in technology level at the whim of the weather. Alarmists say that this is what would happen if we did anything to mitigate climate change. But they're clearly not even reading the local news -- it already happens, and with no efforts at climate change mitigation. Myself, I think if we put some thought in to it, we could decrease or eliminate the down sides of any climate mitigation plans. Certainly it'd be hard to do worse than the current situation of routine weather crashing phone and electric systems for days at a time in our very wealthy country.
The further insult to injury is, this area can expect to get hurricanes -- actually landfalling events with hurricane force winds, for hours in a row. Everywhere on the Atlantic coast from Florida to Long Island, New York can expect it. An area that is unprepared for 1 hour of 50 mph winds is certainly not going to fare well with several hours of 74+ mph winds.
Climate change adaptation is piffle. Pie in the sky nonsense. We are not adapted to weather we already get routinely.