CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- A Charleston church group recently heard a slide lecture on billion-dollar weather damage and mass human suffering caused by global warming, worsened by air pollution. The grim show came from the Climate Reality Project headed by former Vice President Al Gore, who won the Nobel Peace Prize for his warnings.
The lecture is apt today as Hurricane Sandy, the "Frankenstorm," ravages the populous East Coast. Hurricanes, caused by ocean heat, have become stronger, deadlier, more costly. Sandy spans nearly 2,000 miles across its cloud swirl, almost the distance from Charleston to California.
More Frankenstorms and other weather horrors can be expected, the Gore group says. It warns:
* Tornados have become worse menaces, obliterating some cities such as Joplin, Mo.
* Floods and mudslides from monster rains ravage Third World cities. Mississippi Valley floods also have become more destructive.
* Droughts are turning some agriculture regions into worthless desert, bankrupting farmers and elevating food prices.
* Wildfires have consumed vast sections of western forest and suburban neighborhoods.
* Tropical diseases and parasites keep moving northward.