We staggered out of bed yesterday morning to the sound of a fire alarm going off in the January gloom and half naked hung-over bodies appearing out of bedrooms wondering if it was just a false alarm.
By the time we had reached the foyer the manager was looking panicked as she explained that the underground car park had flooded and all the cars down there had ‘gone’.
Discovering that Nissan Almera has been flooded in an underground car park is not the ideal way to finish of a short break in Sligo.
So it was a relief to find that our car had actually survived. Some car owners in the level below where not as fortunate, but ours was OK. Then I saw the pictures from my new home. Down by Spanish Arch was flooded, the promenade in Salthill was wrecked with stones and lifeguard huts strewn over the road. Spiddal looked the same.
And there seems to be more of that sort of weather on the way.
I was wondering afterwards if this is the sort of thing we should get used to seeing?Remember that late snow last spring when the sheep got stuck? Remember that extremely cold winter when our pipes burst? Remember that extremely wet summer when farmers couldn’t get into fields to harvest potatoes?
I think in Ireland we assume that we live on a benign little island that isn’t effected by weather extremes and that we’ll be alright if the worlds temperature rises.
A common attitude would be that it would be nice to live in a warmer country.
But to pick one example we can’t grow all the food we need to eat as an island, with most of our wheat or corn grown in places around the planet. If they can’t grow cereal due to drought then that effects us with food prices or just scarcity.
There aren’t new areas of farmland we can just move to if we need to grow more food.
Below is a graph of world population growth since 10,000 BC. I am amazed by the population growth over the last few hundred years.Now is not the time in world history for dependable farm lands to become unreliable.
I have never really worked out why lots of people don’t want to believe what the majority of scientists are saying about climate change. Perhaps the simple truth is that just don’t want to change our way of life.