Recently, deadly tornadoes ripped through large areas of Kentucky, Illinois, Tennessee, Missouri and Arkansas. As the states work to rebuild the affected communities and properly assess the damage done, President Biden decided that this was the perfect opportunity to tout his Build Back Better spending bill, claiming that the BBB will: “deal with” such deadly tornadoes and make them less likely in the future. And FEMA chief Deanne Criswell said that “This is going to be our new normal,” implying that we would see an increase in deadly weather events unless we embrace the administration’s agenda. But is that true?
False. Completely make believe.
Certainly, dangerous weather events are an ongoing problem as they have been throughout human history. The lives lost to the recent storm are certainly tragic, but the reality is that we do not have a trend of increasing tornadoes in recent years. In fact, the number of deadly tornadoes has been in decline.
To illustrate, here are some recent headlines: “Tornadoes at a Record, Unexplained Low in U.S.” (Time, 2014); “U.S. Tornado Count at Its Lowest 3-Year Total Since 1950, and Here’s Why” (Weather.com, 2015); “2018 sees record low for deadly tornadoes in US” (The Hill, 2018); “2018 was an all-time record quiet year for tornadoes in the U.S.” (USA Today, 2018); and finally, “U.S. saw fewest April tornadoes since 2000” (Washington Post, 2021).
Any major storm that results in so many deaths and destruction is tragic, but we should not jump to conclusions that it must be because of climate change. Some years may have more storms than others, and it’s true that this year there were more October tornadoes in the U.S. than usual, but this event does not make it a trend and does not prove that climate change is the cause.
The administration is acting irresponsibly in their fear-mongering about this storm and seeking to capitalize on this loss of life. Furthermore, Americans should note that there are many ways to encourage the growth and development of clean energy technologies in the U.S. and abroad that would mitigate climate change and are less intrusive but more effective than what the president is proposing in his country-changing, expensive, unnecessary social spending bill known as the Build Back Better plan.
The administration’s attempts to blame these deaths and convince Americans that there is a growing trend of deadly weather events because of climate change is outlanding and unsavory, and therefore deserves 4 unicorns.