Americans may not care about weather-related disasters in places like Tuvalu, but it's possible that mudslides and flooding devastating some of Italy's most beautiful tourist ares will make a blip on the country's collective radar screen. (How will we prove we're cultured if Italy's one big mud pile?)
Six people have died and hundreds more have been evacuated from Tuscany and Liguria. Hard-hit towns include Cinque Terre, the terraced city that makes you look automatically sexy and European in your tourist pictures.
Italy's president, Giorgio Napolitano, did something totally crazy in response to this disaster: He went on television and said that climate change had something to do with it. Egads! And, okay, we know that it's not best practice to link specific weather events to climate change (unless you can do so statistically), but a real live geologist said that climate change is making torrential rains like these more common in Italy.
Thailand's also suffering from flooding. Here, record monsoon rainfall caused the problem. Again, we're not going to say for sure that this would never have happened without climate change (maybe Giorgio Napolitano will step up and do it). But climate change makes it a whole lot more likely that people will lose their lives and their livelihoods in events like these.
- As Bangkok evacuates, city could be flooded for a month, New Scientist
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