Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
August 29, 2017

Houston - Bottling Companies Welcome Flooding

Some rain pours down on south Texas. Media panic ensues. Poor planing and building codes will take their toll.

More severe and more deadly flooding though is happening in Nepal, Bangladesh and India. People in those countries are the most affected by climate change.

But why not make a good business out of events in Houston and elsewhere. Sell the very same stuff that pours down, packed in a material which causes climate change, to the people fleeing its effects.

On offer at Best Buy on Highway 290 in Cypress, TX.

bigger - source

The use, waste and commodification of water is one of the biggest issues "western" societies need to tackle.

Posted by b on August 29, 2017 at 02:44 PM | Permalink

next page »

The refineries that produce the material containing the water are generating big problems as the linked article explains--the region being merely rained upon is called Cancer Alley for very good reasons,

Posted by: karlof1 | Aug 29, 2017 3:10:37 PM | 1

I would point out that the (apparent) 24 packs of Smart Water, likely 1 liter bottles, is not priced much different than it is in stores anywhere else.
This isn't a case of profiteering, just the sales of a branded product which has paid Jennifer Aniston to be a spokesperson. A competing product to Fiji water...

Posted by: c1ue | Aug 29, 2017 3:21:15 PM | 2

thanks b.. i agree with your last line.. perhaps disaster capitalists are hoping for another type of outcome?

Posted by: james | Aug 29, 2017 3:44:55 PM | 3

"Some rain pours down on south Texas. Media panic ensues"

You are a heartless son of a bitch apart from the fact you are full of shit.

Posted by: peter | Aug 29, 2017 3:44:56 PM | 4

. "People in those countries are the most affected by climate change."

They are not, they are affected by deforestation in the Himalayas

Posted by: Keith | Aug 29, 2017 3:53:43 PM | 5

Care to back up your "climate change" hyperbole with actual verifiable facts there b?
No, I didn't think you could...

Posted by: insanity | Aug 29, 2017 4:02:25 PM | 6

The bottles could be replaced by glass bottles which to my knowledge is more environmentally friendly but more costly since plastic is a financially very cheap product.

But consuming bottled water can at times be preferable if it comes from unpolluted spring wells at least. In certain parts, tap water is just recycled and purified water from rivers but house hold waste water also end up in those rivers. The problem is not feces or urine which is neatly removed but certain female synthetic hormones women use for birth control that are very hard to filter out. Thus men drinking tap water consisting of purified surface water on a long term can have their fertility affected. If the bottled water is also extracted from surface water which also often occurs, there is of course the same problem.

Posted by: xor | Aug 29, 2017 4:06:51 PM | 7

#2: Are you serious that 24l packed water normally cost 43US$ ca. (~1.8$/l), or 12l of "smart water" cost 30 US$ (2.5$/l) ca.? In Germany, I may buy 1.5l of mineral water (sparkling or not) for .19€ (25 US-Ct. approximately). For 2.10€ (2.5$) I could buy 1l of medium quality wine or 3.5l of cheap beer.

Posted by: aquadraht | Aug 29, 2017 4:52:11 PM | 8

I personally do not buy bottled water, but I drink only infusions, tea, herbal tea, mate. Hot, warm cold. Boiling kills residual germs, evaporates chlorine if any etc. Option two is tap water and a filter. Most of bottled water is exactly that, but you pay for (a) not purchasing your filters (b) may be they do it better, change charcoal etc. in time.

One thing about buying ANYTHING is non-trivial fuel imprint. With smaller bulk (not buying liquids) it is more practical to shop with a bike or just walk with a knapsack or a tote.

Lastly, city planning. If they did not plan flood planes properly, for shame. But the amount of rain was absolutely staggering, so flood plains were filled and overrun. E.g. Cologne is a reasonably well planned city, but with Rhine at record highs, the city center was flooded.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Aug 29, 2017 4:59:49 PM | 9

You American vultures! How dare you ask 43 dollars for 24 liters. No wonder the state your deplorable country is in and how you abide by your capitalists wishes. Live to work, that's the American dream!

Posted by: Standwiththepeople | Aug 29, 2017 5:28:20 PM | 10

If there's a natural disaster headed at you, it only makes sense. Say what you want about the commodification of water, this is probably one of the few legitimate reasons for it.

Posted by: Seamus Padraig | Aug 29, 2017 5:29:33 PM | 11

I know of only one brand of bottled water in Quebec, Canada (land of lakes and rivers) that has no added fluoride to its contents. Think about that..

Posted by: Lozion | Aug 29, 2017 5:31:12 PM | 12

Let me repeat your last statement b

The use, waste and commodification of water is one of the biggest issues "western" societies need to tackle.

Agreed! Kill the God of Mammon/private finance and the incentives for greed water, greed development (most of Houston), greed health care and such all go away.

After water commodification comes air.......breathe deep....

Posted by: psychohistorian | Aug 29, 2017 5:34:31 PM | 13

hey lozion - you live in quebec? here on vancouver island i think water out of the tap.. we are very lucky on the westcoast of canada to have a lot of water, not that nestle and various other nefarious political types wouldn't like to sell us down the river, or the usa as the case may be...they recently banned bottled water from the university in the area.. i guess coca cola is going to have to keep on buying up the water rights of countries like india in order to keep this sick game going... got to keep the share prices up you know...

Posted by: james | Aug 29, 2017 5:36:31 PM | 14

think - drink, lol...

Posted by: james | Aug 29, 2017 5:36:59 PM | 15

Some rain pours down - FMTT but I never knew you were stupid, b. If it was just a little rain, none of us here would have been upset. But 50 inches over 1/5 of the 2nd largest state - that's between 14 and 15 TRILLION gallons. The Damned Mississippi only dumps a trillion a day - so if we rerouted the Mississippi to Houston, it would have to dump for two weeks to be the same. We got that in 4 days.

You must have zero hurricane experience or else cannot calculate acre/feet of water? Maybe you just don't give a damn because it didn't happen to you.

Posted by: Oilman2 | Aug 29, 2017 5:41:32 PM | 16

To those freaking out over b's line that some rain pours down--he is technically correct and he's not minimizing the damage while correctly pointing out the poor building codes and urban planning are largely to blame for the misery. Homes built in flood plains are not a good idea and can ultimately to much human suffering as it currently happening.

Posted by: WorldBLee | Aug 29, 2017 5:46:33 PM | 17

@ 17...

This thing blew all the flood plain maps away - so your comment is ridiculous. If you don't have a grasp on the numbers, and what happened down here - just don't comment about it. Wishing us luck or prayers is far more useful than throwing rocks at government bureaucrats. Because there is nothing but differing levels of poor government - it is the nature of large cities.

If one looks, fully 70% of the population in America are on the coasts - so go show me a coastal metropolitan city where developers haven't greased palms to develop lowlands...

Posted by: Oilman2 | Aug 29, 2017 5:52:09 PM | 18

The whole post would have been just as effective without the first sentence. You know, the one that torqued my nut at tossing this event off as 'some rain".

Posted by: Oilman2 | Aug 29, 2017 5:55:30 PM | 19

Gosh folks, Bernhard is pointing out that while the hurricane is lashing Texas with unprecedented amounts of rain and causing extreme levels of damage, much of the chaos can also be sheeted home to poor infrastructure maintenance and bad urban planning and building codes which themselves are the result of self-interest on the part of private developers and councillors taking money under the table from the same to suppress proper enforcement of the laws regulating residential developments on areas prone to flooding.

At the same time he is noting that thousands of people living in the Indian sub-continent are now affected EVERY YEAR by extreme levels flooding caused indirectly by climate change through changes in the ANNUAL monsoon as it moves over the Indian Ocean and picks up more water vapour than it usually does.

The current chaos in Texas can be rectified and the infrastructure and buildings can be rebuilt and improved upon to resist natural disasters if Texans could compel the state and local governments to properly enforce building laws and regulations, to be more transparent and accountable in the way they do so, and not favour the interests of rich private developers who try to circumvent laws with bribes or blackmail. At the very least, Texans can avoid and prevent another disaster similar to what Hurricane Harvey is causing. What can people in India, Bangladesh and Nepal do?

Posted by: Jen | Aug 29, 2017 6:18:33 PM | 20

Just now on Watching the Hawks, Tabetha Wallace did an interesting piece about wetland conversion and lack of enforcement of environmental requirements (zero net wetland loss).

Posted by: spudski | Aug 29, 2017 6:21:17 PM | 21

Did anyone ever think that high prices on a scarce neccessity means people are less likely to horde said scarce commodity which equates to a limited supply that can possibly take demand for a temporary amount of time? That price is not too insanely gouging, unlike cultural entertainment events where the prices are even higher than this. It's not like a fresh water truck is getting to them anytime soon. Though some water straws by lifestraw or something might help.

Posted by: NemesisCalling | Aug 29, 2017 6:57:01 PM | 22

3rd world infrastructure man. Blaming plastic for climate change. SMH. The brainwashing is so extensive there is no hope that people can break free of the matrix. These many untruths simply reinforce each other.

Lot of rich folks like Trump Inc very happy. Lot of money be made. Disaster Capitalism

Posted by: Pft | Aug 29, 2017 7:03:50 PM | 23

Oilman2 @16--

Thanks for doing the conversion to acrefeet as the wife and I were discussing that last night as we watched the storm news. Reading Jeff Masters's Category 6 blog entry detailing just how massively overwhelmed the flood control network got gave me a good perspective as to the extremeness of this event. Its Figure 2 for total event rainfall shows just how focused the hose was on Houston,

As for the nature of government, when Sandy inundated the New York City region, many Texas Republican congresspeople voted against the provision of aid monies to help with the disaster, yet when the same catastrophe hit Houston, they were all clamoring for everyone to vote for those same aid monies to be allotted them,

To what degree does Climate Change (CC) have to do with Harvey's intensity? Many small CC contributing factors all helped to create Harvey's result, the most devastating of which was the lack of any steering current to move Harvey along rather than allowing it to park in one general location for so long thanks to higher amplitude within the jet stream due to the change in temperature gradients between poles and equator thanks to our warming the atmosphere. Sandy's odd movement was due to the same factor. The added water vapor and increased moisture carrying capacity of the atmosphere will allow Harvey to continue to wreck havoc as its track is projected to follow the lower Mississippi River basin raining heavily as it goes,

Is Gaia vindictive? Does Harvey represent Karma come home? Given the history of previous storms to hit that region, the answer is no to both. Could the humans have managed it better? Maybe. I have a distant relative living in Houston's metro area that's safe, but others haven't been as fortunate.

Posted by: karlof1 | Aug 29, 2017 7:09:45 PM | 24

Disaster capitalism, that's the american way. Commons is falling apart.

Posted by: Sol Invictus | Aug 29, 2017 7:30:38 PM | 25

I would recommend that any Americans who are on city water get at least a reverse osmosis filter and drinking water tap. A charcoal filter will take most of the chlorine taste out.

If you're on well water in a place with septic tanks and no sewers, a full UV set up is a must unless you enjoy fecal bacteria in your water

Posted by: Pespi | Aug 29, 2017 7:34:26 PM | 26

@ karlof1 who's opinion is that Harvey does not represent Karma come home.

I disagree with your maybe answer to your question about whether humans could have managed it better.

20 years or so ago I spent 5+ years as a land use planning commission chairman for a small city and hung out with building/environmental planners over a dozen or so years and still have contacts there. I learned then that Texas is the epitome of greed gone rogue relative to "good" land use and environmental planning and management. Texas has been an accident looking for places to happen since the 70-80's. I do not wish suffering for the populace of Texas but much of the damage that will be forthcoming could have been averted with responsible land use and development management.

Profits will be privatized and losses socialized in significant amounts around the effects of Harvey.........does this mean we don't have to go to war now?

Posted by: psychohistorian | Aug 29, 2017 7:35:52 PM | 27

@ karlof1...

The number I used (14-15m) is for the storm struck area. Houston naturally got less due to area. There will be lots of number crunching, but the thing to remember is the rate of the MS river to get your handle on it. On the news, they did the math - the rain we got just in Harris county would cover the continental USA in 17" of water. So when anyone tries to trivialize or equate this mess with another from history, they will fall short. This has never happened in the US before - period.


Reliance on federal government to do anything will soon be realized to be a very stupid decision. They are broke - it's just a matter of time before they will be unable to fund anything but their salaries, which will be the last thing to be cut. They are slow as molasses in January - they are just now trying to take over a successful rescue by local, state and volunteers - and we are not having any of that. Trump didn't even fly over us, and basically said Texans can handle themselves - his way of saying "good luck - we are busy spending money we don't have on things we think are more important". And to be honest, we would be ok without Federal intervention - watch the video coming out of Houston as people just do what needs doing.

Climate change is a red herring - ice cores tell you all you need to know and that is actual science. The nature of climate IS change, as it tries to equalize the Sun's energy on a rotating planet composed of mostly water. When a single large volcano can exceed all of mankind's effluent, then that should explain a lot for those capable of critical thinking. Where have all the super-hurricanes we were promised post-Katrina by the AGW crowd? Perhaps the Sun's declining output has a little bit of an effect on our climate?

RE: evacuation

We found out about the potential flooding Wednesday last week. The storm hit late Friday. There are 7 million people in the area affected. The only way to manage evacuation is to open all freeways in the exit direction on both sides, and to station gas trucks at every gas station in the evacuation route. Even then, it would take weeks to set this up, and days to execute this plan. We did NOT have that as a viable option.

After they leave? Where do you send 4-5 million people? How do you feed them when they hit your city like locusts?

The 20/20 hindsight of people not involved in this will be amazing. And the stupid will ignore the math involving evacuations - we don't, because we tried it with hurricane Ike and it didn't work even close to expectations.

Posted by: Oilman2 | Aug 29, 2017 7:53:30 PM | 28

PH @27--

I built commonfolk housing for my general contractor grandfather in San Antonio during the summers in the late 1960s and codes then were good, but that was before the state-wide building boom that came later. As the Cat 6 blog post I linked to explained, the entire structure of Houston's flood control works were constructed prior to that building boom; so, people of an earlier generation that tried to plan conservatively for the future were displaced by those having a lower moral quality--a wave of dystopia that swept over the nation with the assent of Reagan and his Greed is Good philosophy which continues today. All one really need do is look at the lack of moral quality of the majority of Texas politicos as exemplified by their hypocrisy on disaster funding I also linked to. So, yes, maybe--IF--people in charge had higher degrees of moral responsibility--thinking for all instead of just the developers who were lining their pockets--a human failing often seen throughout history.

Posted by: karlof1 | Aug 29, 2017 7:56:44 PM | 29

@ Jen -

Your hope for a government free of corruption is really sweet, but it will simply never be. Various Prophets have condemned greed and avarice, and Dante even built a special level in his Hell for them. Yet they still surround us, and we have many words for them in many languages. The only fix is to be smart enough to do your homework and avoid these guys and their schemes. Or just refuse to play or pay.

Prostitution is the same - it will never be eliminated, as it is the world's oldest profession. It may enrage people in many ways, but it is part of human culture whether we want it so or not.

We do the best we can, but passing laws doesn't mean a thing if there isn't a penalty for breaking them. Our system is so corrupt now that if you can get the money to make your "donation" to the right person, you will get that "Get Out of Jail FREE" card. I see it happen every day in the news, don't you?

So adapt your life and stop thinking a law can magically imbue a greed-ridden person with a moral compass, just as these same laws have never stopped hooking or thieving or murdering or lying...

Posted by: Oilman2 | Aug 29, 2017 8:05:41 PM | 30

Some commenters on this post missed b’s point.

And yes,
@ c1ue | Aug 29, 2017 3:21:15 PM | 2

Read up on the lack of compassion. Indeed there is price gouging going on – Ask the exceptional ones -> Best Western Plus and others:>Thousands were fleeing Harvey. This Texas hotel started nearly tripling room prices

[.]Hotels aren’t the only ones guilty of price gouging as Houston grapples with continued rainfall and flooding from Hurricane Harvey, the most powerful storm to hit Texas in more than 50 years. Over the weekend, more than 500 complaints of price gouging were lodged with the Texas attorney general’s office, according to CNBC—including $99 cases of bottled water, gas at $10 a gallon and hotels tripled or quadrupled in price. [.]

Posted by: likklemore | Aug 29, 2017 8:19:11 PM | 31

@ 31 my bad - the link was truncated:

Thousands were fleeing Harvey. This Texas hotel started nearly tripling room prices

Posted by: likklemore | Aug 29, 2017 8:22:49 PM | 32

From NASA on climate change:

Fake news?

Posted by: ben | Aug 29, 2017 8:23:59 PM | 33

More fake news?

Posted by: ben | Aug 29, 2017 8:26:58 PM | 34

@24: the hurricane sandy bill was loaded with pork that had nothing to do with hurricane relief. That's why it was voted against.

@28: going by the higher estimates for rainfall (50"), you're saying that would cover the continental US in almost a foot and a half of rain? I had no idea that Harris county covered a third of our landmass!!!

Posted by: woogs | Aug 29, 2017 8:44:24 PM | 35


More likely to be fake science.

Concencus does not equal "science", the existance of a concencus tells you nothing regarding cause and or amount of warming.

Reliance upon concensus as an argument suggests ingnorance of the topic, and a lack of faith in the science allegedly supporting it.

Posted by: Just Sayin' | Aug 29, 2017 9:19:21 PM | 36

@ 36: Yes, you gotta' watch NASA, they mislead the public constantly:)..

Seriously, with all due respect for your opinion, think I'll believe NASA.

With regards to the over priced water, if Texans ever set foot in a business that exploits this debacle in Houston, they need to be committed.

Ain't disaster capitalism wonderful?

" It's just business, get over it!"

Posted by: ben | Aug 29, 2017 9:33:52 PM | 37

P.S.--Maybe the Texans can deal with the price gouging, by using a GOP saying of a few years ago, that they can solve a problem by using "a second amendment solution"..

Their saying, not mine...

Posted by: ben | Aug 29, 2017 10:06:47 PM | 38

Oilman2 Your being offended by b's first sentence is well justified. It is difficult for people listening to news headlines to get a very good sense of what has just happened in SE Texas and the Houston area. This has been, and it is still going on, an unprecedented event. It is a weather event of biblical proportions. It is hard for outsiders to judge these events when the MSN try to drive people into hysteria over some of the most minor hurricanes. Harvey happens to be a serious hurricane but it is only once in a decade event for the Caribbean region.

What is different about Harvey is that it came ashore while the Western US was involved in one major heat wave -- i.e. a major high pressure area settled in over West Texas and the American SW blocking the normal west to east low pressure weather fronts from pulling the remnants of those hurricanes away to the east. This stalled the low pressure area right on top of Houston for about 4 days. Huge rains resulted. They are calling this a once in a thousand year event. Perhaps it was once in a thousand year event, say a thousand years ago, but given global warming it is probably going to be more frequent in the next thousand years.

Posted by: ToivoS | Aug 29, 2017 10:13:42 PM | 39

@29 karlof1

".....Reagan and his Greed is Good philosophy which continues today..."

Reagan and Thatcher...that indeed was the beginning of the rise of world-wide neo-liberalism and finance capital sometimes otherwise known as Disaster Capitalism as some have called it here, continuing to this day and distorting economic, political and cultural life in all countries of the world. Many indicators of that demise in 'standards' and ethics

I think that the Greed is Good meme has been a very powerful negative on american society and The Commons ever since, now personified as these greedy contractors who built with few if any codes other than the code of Greed is Good; and also showing up here in this recent Houston/Texas tragedy as price gouging

Posted by: michaelj72 | Aug 29, 2017 10:25:32 PM | 40

"Best Buy apologizes for ‘big mistake’ of price-gouging Texans for water — after their stock tanks."

Posted by: ben | Aug 29, 2017 10:50:13 PM | 41

# karlof1 & michaelj72..others...

Greed isn't going away with legislation, as most people doing the legislating are exceptionally greedy. Prosecution just pushes it out of sight, into a stealth mode. There will always be greedy people. What has always puzzled me is that we are here on this planet for decades - trees live longer than we do. Whatever you gain in material things is only for these few decades. What we take with us is memories, or else nothing. But in both cases, whatever we had when alive now belongs to someone else. You don't get to take it with you.

So what drives greed? Seriously, it appears to me that if greed was described scientifically, it would be a severe neurosis, a definite mental disorder. So why are so many people seriously afflicted with greed?

Posted by: Oilman2 | Aug 29, 2017 10:52:00 PM | 42

@ ben...

They warned looters about that on the news tonight, reminding them that Texans are not going to put up with it, and they may get more than jail time. About as overt as one can get and not arouse the ire of the anti-gun crowd.

Two teens were found beaten unconscious behind a strip center, next to 9 televisions. That won't make the news but did come direct from a LEO.

Posted by: Oilman2 | Aug 29, 2017 10:54:59 PM | 43

NOAA added two supercomputers for weather prediction after the Hurricane Sandy Debacle where only the European ECMWF model was accurate.

Unfortunately, a computer is only as good as the model and I suspect that NOAA doesn’t have the chaos/ensemble model used by the Europeans (behind paywall) and wouldn’t even understand the concept of Lorenz attractors anyway.

The governor recommended evacuation but the local leaders chose not to actIMO, local officials are covering their asses making cases why no evacuation recommendation was made.
They withheld information despite other warnings to evacuate (e.g. Rebecca Reisig), which were declared to be false by FEMA.

Most homes do not have flood insurance, which will lead to financial ruin of hundreds of thousands of Americans. Most will have to turn the home keys to the bank and move away leaving taxpayers to bail out the banks again.

The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) is also deeply in debt and the flood plain maps are outdated which adds to the deficit. Unfortunately, 30% of all flood insurance payments also go to homeowners who continually rebuild on flood plains and even enjoy artificially low “grandfathered” rates. These ““Repetitive loss properties make up around 1 percent of policies”.

As oilman states the system is broken. Actually all systems are broken so plan accordingly.

Posted by: Krollchem | Aug 29, 2017 11:30:01 PM | 44

The water prices are truly insane; here in LoS a 20L carboy is ฿10 which is about $.30 USD.
It's RO and UV treated.
Wars will be fought over fresh water...coming soon...

Posted by: V. Arnold | Aug 29, 2017 11:36:54 PM | 45

It seems that any weather is now blamed on Global Warming aka Climate Change. I suppose the next Ice Age will also be blamed on human activity. The scare mongering sure has made Al Gore wealthy.

Posted by: ab initio | Aug 29, 2017 11:43:25 PM | 46

Oilman2 @42--

We agree on a number of points. I write often about the dysfunctional culture that plagues most human societies, noting the dysfunction has existed for millennia. Most unfortunate is the fact that very few are aware of the great dysfunction within our culture and that humanity will never become civilized until it corrects the dysfunction by creating a new culture--just modifying our current culture doesn't solve the problem.

Posted by: karlof1 | Aug 29, 2017 11:45:59 PM | 47

" So why are so many people seriously afflicted with greed?"

Posted by: Oilman2 | Aug 29, 2017 10:52:00 PM | 42

I think it's an all to human inclination, for those who haven't evolved enough to grasp symbiosis.

Posted by: ben | Aug 30, 2017 12:08:19 AM | 48

Angry responses from "Pete" and "Oilman2" remind me of a person from New Orleans I met at a party in San Diego in late 2005.
His hometown was New Orleans and he loved it. When I told him some areas badly flooded by Katrina should best be abandoned because
they were too far below sea level for reconstruction to make sense, he got so mad I thought he might hit me. I was right then and he knew it, but he still got angry at me for dissing his hometown. People just don't want to hear detached viewpoints such as pointing out that building up a huge metropolis like Houston in a location such as it is inevitably invites nature's payback. Houston is far from the only place of course, but it is remarkable where people build regardless of natural hazards that are pretty obvious.

Posted by: erik | Aug 30, 2017 12:38:04 AM | 49

ben | Aug 30, 2017 12:08:19 AM | 48

Our sick form of capitalism invited greed; every man for himself.
Leaving the hunter/gatherer ended communal dependence/action.
Of course there is more to it, but that's a good place to start.
Graebers book; Debt; the First 5,000 Years is a stunning history of civilization and past economies.

Posted by: V. Arnold | Aug 30, 2017 12:40:57 AM | 50


Margaret Thatcher- Globalisation

Criticizing Labour party policies, minimum wage, SA sanctions.

Posted by: @Madderhatter67 | Aug 30, 2017 12:58:58 AM | 51

Digging through stuff from the last thread trying to place the room or connect players hasn't been much fun. Lot of nasty shit. All for control of energy. Oil and gas. Houston Texas. Home to the headquarters of many global oil companies.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Aug 30, 2017 1:26:39 AM | 52

Ben 37 what about Roy Spencer ticks all the boxes Worked for NASA , Climate scientist ......very much disagrees with ....catastrophic manmade global warming.

Posted by: col | Aug 30, 2017 1:29:12 AM | 53

@14 james, yes I do. Used to be drinking tap water was fine here but now it depends on the neighborhood. I find it appalling that we are subjecting to fluoridated bottled water. For example, the Eska brand commonly found here was bought about 5 years ago from a local esker owner by an affiliate of Morgan, Stanley & co. and has the highest levels of F contents at 0.1 ppm..

Posted by: Lozion | Aug 30, 2017 2:09:43 AM | 54

@28 Oilman

That's just repeating the mayor's false dilemma that suggests you have to evacuate 6 million people or no one. They could have done a much smaller voluntary evacuation of people in the riskiest areas, and if they don't know where those are, what the f*** have they been doing for the last 50 years. Mayor also stated that no one knew where the storm was gong which is categorically false as you already showed. They knew what was going to happen Wednesday and how the storm was likely to stall over Houston. I watched the models myself. It's incompetence and greed on a massive....aka.....the American Way.

Posted by: Sad Canuck | Aug 30, 2017 2:10:24 AM | 55

What's bizarre about the bottled water craze, including the colossal profiteering by 'famous' brands, is the ubiquity of bottled water on TV - just ahead of Apple laptops. 8 out of 10 laptops on TV are Apple. 10 out of 10 TV hosts keep a bottle of water handy and rarely forget to suck on it.
The only thing missing is a plaintive "Mum-ma-ah" before raising the bottle to their lips. A pre-suck "Mum-ma-ah" should be compulsory on TV.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Aug 30, 2017 2:17:01 AM | 56

When I was young, there used to be a lot of hitch hikers. when we were driving around, my mate, if he saw a hitch hiker would yell out the window "piss in your boots and swim". I guess the Texans don't need to piss in their boots to get around.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Aug 30, 2017 2:50:22 AM | 57

I am rather surprised that Moon of Alabama seems to have fallen for the Global Warming hoax. I guess you believe some things governments tell you but not others. I respectfully suggest you do your own homework.

Posted by: Alfred | Aug 30, 2017 2:59:13 AM | 58

There's truly no fucking hope for amerikans - may as well nuke the lot now. Even when something as blatantly fucked up as a vast deluge hits the home of the sociopathic oil industry, amerikans opt for self interest ahead of common sense by rejecting the overwhelming evidence of climate change using anger to conceal the baseness of their selfishness.
A deluge of amerikan exceptionalists display more passion over nature's well deserved payback to them than they have ever shown over amerika's capricious, greed driven destruction of human beings all over this planet.

Amerikans are the only derps on this rock who wholesale reject the plain truth of humankind's destruction of their own habitat. Why? Sure they have been subjected to intensive energy corporation deceits - but so have many of us living all across this joint. No, it is exactly the same reason as they generally accepted the murderous butchery of the illegal invasion of Iraq -despite knowing deep down that Iraqis had nothing to do with 911 or any of the other lies that the majority of amerikans chose to swallow.
They swallowed this bullshit because they believed that by doing so there could be a bit of an earner in the theft of another people's resources.
It was only when it became blindingly obvious that the shrub had screwed up big time, hoisting amerikans on their own petard of 'giving' Iraq democracy, and that Iran was going to do better out of the mixture of greed, arrogance and sheer bloody stupidity which amerika's leaders had brought to bear on the Iraq slaughter, that amerikans quit backing the invasion.

Just as with this storm, amerikans reject climate change solely because accepting it is likely to cost them personally, as their economy which is founded on the need for uninterupted, untrammeled exploitation of the world's resources, simply cannot cope with any the reduction in capitalist profiteering which ameliorating environmental degradation requires.
Dress it up any way you like amerikans -, with lies, false appeals to logic, ad hominems and all the rest of your scummy deceits and irrationalities, we know that deep down you are totally aware of the horror your greed promises for all of us.
We also know that you are just too weak willed to accept this truth, so you bury the facts under a swathe of evasions, distortions and plain lies such as we can see in this thread.

The idiocy of the day goes to the post which attempted to rationalise the hypocrisy of Texas appealing for federal aid for themselves so soon after Texas rejected similar aid for others following Hurricane Sandy, on the grounds that the Sandy aid had 'too many pork barrels' - you've got to be kidding. Since when have the greedy shape-shifters on capitol hill ever passed a piece of legislation that wasn't loaded to the gunnels with pork? That is the amerikan way and I have no doubt that should legislation for this texas storm ever be put to the house,it will be similarly loaded with all sorts of extras for DC pols 'good friends'.

Posted by: Debsisdead | Aug 30, 2017 3:03:24 AM | 59

Debsisdead | Aug 30, 2017 3:03:24 AM | 59
There's truly no fucking hope for amerikans - may as well nuke the lot now. Even when something as blatantly fucked up as a vast deluge hits the home of the sociopathic oil industry, amerikans opt for self interest ahead of common sense by rejecting the overwhelming evidence of climate change using anger to conceal the baseness of their selfishness.
A deluge of amerikan exceptionalists display more passion over nature's well deserved payback to them than they have ever shown over amerika's capricious, greed driven destruction of human beings all over this planet.

Yes, indeed, been true from day one. Anybody who knows U.S. history, knows it for the ugly and barbaric truth of it. We've been fucking people up from the beginning.
But, there was a momentary glimmer of hope;
Outside Independence Hall when
the Constitutional Convention of 1787 ended,
Mrs. Powel of Philadelphia asked Benjamin Franklin,
"Well, Doctor, what have we got, a republic or a monarchy?"
With no hesitation whatsoever, Franklin responded,
"A republic, if you can keep it."
Liberty Tree Quotes

Posted by: V. Arnold | Aug 30, 2017 3:31:59 AM | 60

Texan's, too accustomed to getting aroud with pork in their boots rather than piss? Learn to swim fu....s.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Aug 30, 2017 3:34:49 AM | 61

Absolutely spot-on. Some staggeringly misguided comments here, which just don't get it. The world "beyond America" impatiently awaits the day a huge storm sweeps the USA off into the Pacific. Perhaps the Chinese can be persuaded to re-site their Nicaraguan sea-level canal between Canada and Mexico and widen it by several hundred miles.

Posted by: Petra | Aug 30, 2017 3:35:58 AM | 62

Seriously, with all due respect for your opinion, think I'll believe NASA.

Posted by: ben | Aug 29, 2017 9:33:52 PM | 37

LOL - yeah, I forgot, you're the guy that was pimping Bernie Sanders as the 2nd coming of christ. Critical thinking clearly not one of your strong points

@ 36: Yes, you gotta' watch NASA, they mislead the public constantly:)..

Yeah, a Gov't sponsored agency would never lie to, or mislead you, right? Cast iron logic that . . . .

And as for people that call themselves "Climate scientists" - clearly they are pure as the driven snow and would never mislead anyone either.

Posted by: Just Sayin' | Aug 30, 2017 3:50:12 AM | 63

In the last thread was a team in purple. I suspect the are the team that is hardly glimpsed at the start of this video...
If they are, they are, they are a CIA trained kill team.
Sometime back, McCain said CIA had put a few billion into Syria.
Let it rain let it rain.. on the fuckers who have been behind the kill sites in the basements of "clinics/hospitals" in Ghouta.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Aug 30, 2017 3:57:54 AM | 64

back around 2014/15 "Climate Scientists" were confidently predicting "permanent drought" for Texas

Katharine Hayhoe

    Katharine Anne Scott Hayhoe (born April 15, 1972)[1] is an atmospheric scientist and associate professor of political science at Texas Tech University, where she is director of the Climate Science Center.[2] She is also the CEO of the consulting firm ATMOS Research and Consulting.[3]

So Kathy's a big cheese in the world of "Climate Science".

    The Katherine Hayhoe Permanent Drought Posted on October 26, 2015

    On April 22, Katherine Hayhoe and friends announced that permanent drought was on its way to the Texas Panhandle.

    Since then, the Texas Panhandle has had nearly 200% of normal precipitation.

So much for the wisdom of "Climate Scientists"

Posted by: Just Sayin' | Aug 30, 2017 4:12:12 AM | 65

4,300 Days Since Last U.S. Major Hurricane Strike
July 31st, 2017 by Roy W. Spencer, Ph. D.

Wednesday of this week will mark 4,300 days since the last major hurricane (Category 3 or stronger, 111-129 mph maximum sustained winds) made landfall in the U.S.

That’s almost 12 years.

The last major hurricane to make landfall in the U.S. was Wilma striking Florida on October 24, 2005, one of several strong hurricanes to hit the U.S. that year. The unusual hurricane activity in 2005 was a central focus of Al Gore’s 2006 movie, An Inconvenient Truth, in which Mr. Gore suggested 2005 was going to be the new normal. As you might recall, Gore went on to receive a Nobel Peace Prize for helping to raise awareness of the severe weather dangers from global warming.

Instead, the bottom dropped out of Atlantic hurricane activity after 2005. The “drought” of landfalling U.S. major hurricanes continues, and as seen in this graphic from, no hurricanes have yet formed anywhere in the Atlantic basin in 2017, despite the forecast for an above-normal hurricane season:

Posted by: Just Sayin' | Aug 30, 2017 4:24:35 AM | 66

peter (our resident emo) posts:

"Some rain pours down on south Texas. Media panic ensues"

You are a heartless son of a bitch apart from the fact you are full of shit.

like i said some threads ago, there are generations of Americans who have been trained to feel, rather than to think, and who, when they feel, are further burdened with an undeveloprd sense of humour, and a practically stillborn sense of irony.

Posted by: john | Aug 30, 2017 5:19:48 AM | 67

Why are so many people in Western society afflicted with greed? When you live in societies that believe accumulating material goods, property, reputation and influence (in the sense of pushing others to do what you want rather than doing it yourself) is a positive value in itself, which regard self-interest as morally superior to helping weak or vulnerable others, which encourage immediate gratification over delaying pleasure, and which privilege competition over co-operation with a winner-takes-all attitude, should you really be surprised that there are so many greedy people about?

Posted by: Jen | Aug 30, 2017 7:41:54 AM | 68

Reading the above comments I see a lot of astonishment as the chickens are coming home to roost. As if such disasters only occurred for the first time now. Natural disasters with this kind of severity have been occurring more frequently all over the globe.

Poor city planning was only part of the problem with global warming the prime cause neatly covered up. Humans have the tendency to blame others, even if they themselves carry part of it.

US leaders have refused to implement the Paris climate accords. And even those accords do not aspire to lower global warming but to keep the global average temperature below preindustrial levels + 2 degrees Celsius which is already catastrophical.

My hope is that the United States of America is faced with a Harvey category hurricane every single day. Maybe then will man made climate chaos be taken seriously instead of being denied. Will the Koch brothers and co be forced to stop using their vast wealth to fund climate chaos deniers that sow doubt and confusion.

Because as long as the poor people, the Untermenschen, living in distant lands are the only ones that are affected, that pay the price, that do the dying, nothing will change. Maybe even on the contrary.

Posted by: number6 | Aug 30, 2017 8:40:56 AM | 69

There was recently some research on global warming that concluded that all of the warming in recent decades was due to adjustments.
100% Of US Warming Is Due To NOAA Data Tampering
The author also published the raw NOAA dataset, the program that creates the charts, and the source code of the program. That means anyone can check his raw data is correct, check his methods, challenge his assumptions, and reproduce his results. That's good science, the way its supposed to be.

Now its important to know if that's really true, right?
So I went looking for a good rebuttal, and I was sorely disappointed. The best I found was an article that basically says the opposite, but doesn't show how it reached that conclusion.

In response to pretty clear evidence that the sky is black they simply say "no, the sky is actually blue, everyone knows that". So do we all now takes sides and call people "blue deniers"? No. That's a terrible idea.

Scientists are supposed to say something like "yes, I see what you did, you took measurements at night when the sky is black, but its the waking hours that count and then the sky is blue". Then we can all expand our understanding. Just being dogmatic and saying "no its blue" is not really that helpful.

P.S. I used to be firmly on the climate change bandwagon.
But I heard some scientists making reasoned arguments with verifiable facts, so I started digging.
Being trained as a scientist, I read original papers (not the journalist's summary).
Like other MoA readers, I'm unimpressed if 97% of people think something different is true.
I'm willing to be convinced about AGW, but currently I've got one big question that has not yet been answered.
And then there is this: Matt Taibi's article about Goldman Sachs and AGW, and how they stand to make a trillion dollars from trading carbon credits. Gosh, if only GS had some kind of influence...
The Great American Bubble Machine

Posted by: Deltaeus | Aug 30, 2017 8:43:48 AM | 70

With respect, India and Bangladesh are NOT suffering from 'climate change.' They are suffering from the Malthusian catastrophe, which is NOT a global collapse thank you very much, it is crushing misery and suffering in places where people consistently have more children than they can afford to support - although it must be admitted, that this behavior is aided and abetted by all those western 'experts' who DEMAND that people should be bred like cattle the batter for the rich to have cheap labor.

If India had only (only!) 300 million people, they would have plenty of fresh water. If Bangladesh were not so overpopulated that even temporary mud-flats are instantly colonized by desperate farmers, they would have plenty of fresh water - and not be so vulnerable to floods.

Don't blame the weather for what is under human control.

Posted by: TG | Aug 30, 2017 8:57:03 AM | 71

>>>> insanity | Aug 29, 2017 4:02:25 PM | 6

Care to back up your "climate change" hyperbole with actual verifiable facts there b?

Posted by: Ghostship | Aug 30, 2017 9:29:24 AM | 72

>>>> insanity | Aug 29, 2017 4:02:25 PM | 6

Care to back up your "climate change" hyperbole with actual verifiable facts there b?
It doesn't matter what b has to say on the subject. If the climate change continues in this way we're fucked. If climate change is a natural occurrence then there is probably nothing we can do about it. But are you 100% certain that all climate change has only natural causes, that humans have done nothing that has accelerated it.?

Posted by: Ghostship | Aug 30, 2017 9:34:18 AM | 73

It's too bad that so many people are suffering because of weather. But I also don't understand why people that live in a place that might suffer from such a disaster haven't prepared better?

I live in Colorado and I keep gear around to protect me from the natural disaster which happens every year here: snow. Seems like most of the folks around me do the same. But I'm often surprised by people who complain that snow hasn't been removed from roadways in a 'timely' matter. Obviously folks from somewhere else that moved here for the summers...

If you're gonna live someplace where the SHTF then isn't it YOUR responsibility to prepare for such? Or should you rely on the State to cover your ass?

Man Made Global Warming is bullshit but it is appealing to those who believe mankind cannot be fixed and will eventually kill himself off... a view I'm kinda fond of myself. But I'm thinkin' it's more likely to be something from the cosmos like this

Humans have been screwing-up their environment for as long as they've been living... but we're also fond of screwing each other which means we've created quite a gene pool of possibilities in our genetic make-up. That is why some form of human will be hanging onto this rock for a long time regardless of hurricanes or asteroids...

Posted by: DaveS | Aug 30, 2017 9:35:59 AM | 74

This is supposedly a mistake. The Smartwater is cheaper than the regular water, if you notice. Further, this flooding is caused not by warming, but a cold front in North Texas that kept the hurricane from moving on. If you reflect on most hurricane recovery scenes they are sunny, the storm moves on and clears out, not in this case. The actual hurricane, barely a class 4 isn't all that unusual and wasn't all that destructive. Houston was inundated by the inflow initially and that remained. Further, to blame this on "climate change" you have to also explain the lack of hurricanes over the last 12 years, the quietest decade in recorded history. Climate change zealots actually altered sea buoy readings to fit their narrative. The Max Planck Inst. doesn't totally concur with the climate change alarmists, nor does the IPCC which altered their data to fit the narrative. The words/claims of scientists have been altered to fit the alarmist narrative as well. If you predicted "no change" you'd have been more accurate than any of the climate change models. Climate change is not receptive to scientific study, we don't have environments to study, but one global system that moves at a glacial pace. Regardless, efficiency, conservation, habitat preservation are all good ends in their own right, let's focus on good policy rather than a nascent science which lacks nuance or a single accurate prediction. (we don't know if caffeine is good or bad for you, which is a vastly simpler question than constructing climate change models that reflect reality accurately.) There is no vast consensus, there are no mitigating factors, and there's a bunch of contradictory effects blamed on one cause by zealots and advocates, that is not science, nor how it works.
I am an organic gardener, and no enemy of the environment. But, frankly the various claims are so absurd it's silly. A grass fed cow is more green than an irrigated lentil. Remember ranches are preserved habitats, where farms are chemically and mechanically denuded monocultures. I know where I'd rather pitch a tent. I've been on reclamation projects where cattle were an integral part of reversing desertification, bringing back grassland which even lead to the return of springs, long though depleted. There's an infinite amount of nuance to be understood yet, and till we approach that, climate change is far from a "science"

Posted by: scottindallas | Aug 30, 2017 9:44:10 AM | 75

@ Sad Canuck...

Oh yes, sure... your 20/20 hindsight is very appreciated. A partial evacuation is what we attempted when Hurricane Ike struck us - and it failed due to factors too lengthy to go into. I will say that it was instructive.

But since you are a Canuck, IF we had that list you imagine, how long would it take to go door to door and inform those people? How long to ferry the infirm out? How long to do a follow-up sweep and try to convince people to leave their property? And what do you do when they don't leave? Because you still have to rescue them later.

There simply was not enough time between the forecasting of the rains and the impact of the storm.

Let me repeat this - the storm exceeded all known flood boundaries, so your supposed "solution" in your 20/20 hindsight would have helped, but by no means solved our problem of what Harvey brought. Harvey just redrew all flood lines and not in a happy way.

Maybe this will help you understand - if we had received this rain as snowfall, then we would have received about 20 meters of snow in 4 days. That clear it up for ya?

Anyone assuming that government and big developers would do anything except develop every inch to increase profit and tax base is just not thinking - it is events like this that force temporary change on them. Otherwise they work hand in glove because they both want money, be it tax monies or profits.

It is temporary, because they will keep rebuilding until they can't. Instead of razing the areas, they will launch a huge drainage project and add pumps and levees and things like that. Only repeated failures cause abandonment. And even then, New Orleans will not be abandoned due to river shipping - which is why it was built in the first place.

Posted by: Oilman2 | Aug 30, 2017 9:59:57 AM | 76

@john 67

Thanks for that breakdown of the psyche of Americans. Except I'm not an American.

Was the lead sentence supposed to be humorous or ironic or both? Help me out. I'm willing to learn from a master like yourself.

Tackling the pressing problem of the spike in bottled water prices the article claims that its packaging contributes to climate change. Then all the resident heavy thinkers post all kinds of opinions and obscure links that purportedly prove there is no such thing. What is one to think? Another deep state plot to fuck us over I guess.

As the problem in Texas and Louisiana grows worse by the hour I will try to keep my feelings in check. I will use that same cold logic that is so prevalent on this board, that the residents of those places are part of the Evil Empire and deserve whatever they get.

Posted by: peter | Aug 30, 2017 10:12:40 AM | 77

I'm not going to get butt hurt by those bashing Amerikans - they can do that all they want. I would ask that they realize that most governments stay in power with very poor approval ratings - an indication that the people are not the same as their government. You can clearly see that in Amerika today and many other countries.

If you believe in AGW, then there isn't anything I can do to change your mind. Because it isn't anything but a BELIEF, you know, like what religions require to exist. Which is what this whole AGW thing is - a belief backed by altered data, ignored data, mis-classified data, sponsoring commercial interests and greedy politicians. They have done one hell of a job on the planet too - I must give them applause.

I would refer people to look into sunspots, solar cycles and such - as they seem to have been left out in most of the climate models. Probably because the sun is of far less import to climate than mankind's activities, eh?

Posted by: Oilman2 | Aug 30, 2017 10:18:11 AM | 78


from b's

Some rain pours down on south Texas. Media panic ensues

to your

You are a heartless son of a bitch apart from the fact you are full of shit

is quite a leap,

unless you're some kind of anti-social, sophomoric shithead.

Posted by: john | Aug 30, 2017 12:06:07 PM | 79

@ number6 69

The fact is that most of the world lives in littoral zones - because they facilitate traffic via shallow bays and rivers and because they had abundant fishing to support population growth. Coastlines are the easiest place for humans to make the most of their local environments - the advantages outweigh the storm threats or else everyone would be living in the center of continents, which they simply do not. Logical, with the Earth mostly water.

Your statement that Untermenschen are the only ones affected is ridiculous - just look at the coastal cities to see who gets affected. There are more than the "little people" in those cities. Most of the worlds populations live in coastal or riverine areas - go and look for yourself.

Climate changes, as does sea level - read about it via ice cores. Ice reveals that the planet has been through much faster and larger changes than we see today. Ice reveals quite a lot that is contrary to things pushed on us as facts today. Climate is change - if there was no climate there would be minimal life on this rock in space. Change provides the impetus for many life forms, including ours.

It isn't chickens coming home, it is simply random chance as to who gets struck by these storms. I have survived over 20 of these storms in my life - they are part of the package included in living on a coastline anywhere. Texas will continue to survive these storms, because these storms are part of occupying this part of our continent. They will not go away - living with them is strictly voluntary. We stay because the benefits outweigh the risks - just as Californians stay in spite of earthquakes, Indonesians and Japanese stay in spite of volcanoes and Muscovites stay in spite of the cold.

Posted by: Oilman2 | Aug 30, 2017 12:52:38 PM | 80

Man Made Global Warming is bullshit but it is appealing to those who believe mankind cannot be fixed and will eventually kill himself off... a view I'm kinda fond of myself. But I'm thinkin' it's more likely to be something from the cosmos like this
Posted by: DaveS | Aug 30, 2017 9:35:59 AM | 74

Hey, Tough Guy!
If you weren't an Intellectual Pygmy you wouldn't use thinkin' instead of thinking to project your fake, pro-pollution image. But you have, so why should anyone take any of your other drivel seriously?
You're conveniently forgetting that Global Warming is just one of many negative side-effects of man-made atmospheric pollution. Phasing out fossil fuels would clean up the air we breathe and possibly reduce the growing rate of newborns with minor physical and brain function defects.(!?)
What's so seductive about pollution that the Climate Deniers are falling over themselves to flog the meme that pollution is harmless?

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Aug 30, 2017 1:41:00 PM | 81

Intellectual pygmy? Lol

That doesn't even reach the level of "pot, meet kettle".

Its more "this guys needs a good mirror"

Posted by: Just Sayin' | Aug 30, 2017 2:01:32 PM | 82

Today's Category 6 report focuses on the East Texas's Golden Triangle region, "encompassing the cites of Beaumont/Port Arthur/Orange (population 410,000)," where the 5-day storm total's closing on 4 Feet! I-10's a raging river and the two largest refineries in USA were forced to close making 12 now--the region's relatively cheap gasoline will now rapidly rise in price. Lots of moisture's still being redistributed from the Gulf onto land; and with Harvey moving so slowly, that trend will continue through tomorrow.

Posted by: karlof1 | Aug 30, 2017 3:22:54 PM | 83

@john 79

Yeah, I'm sophomoric john. I called out b as a bullshitter because the best comment he could come out with about the Houston problem was some evil bottling company or some big box outlet stood to gain.

You, on the other hand, take the position that he was being humorous, ironic or both and called me out on being too unsophisticated to catch it. Nah, shove it up your ass.

The paw patrol duly kicked in with a multitude of links about the host of indignities being foisted upon us by forces beyond our control. Yawn.

I don't think this blog entry will be quoted too many times. Local American news is not b's strong point. He should stick to Syria.

Posted by: peter | Aug 30, 2017 4:55:38 PM | 84

peter | Aug 30, 2017 4:55:38 PM | 84

Yeah, I'm sophomoric john. I called out b as a bullshitter because the best comment he could come out with about the Houston problem was some evil bottling company or some big box outlet stood to gain.

See my comment at 32. There is price gauging going on or did you miss it?

And, do you have a stake in Poland Spring?

just in case you missed this Colossal Fraud Lawsuit:

Ever wonder if that bottled mineral water you just spent several dollars on is really mineral water? According to a bombshell new lawsuit filed this week, at least in the case of one company it isn't.

~ ~ ~ ~
If b is such a bullshitter, why are you here enjoying his hospitality? For your convenience, the report in link below is included in b’s post.

Aug.29, 2017

India, Nepal and Bangladesh are battling some of the worst monsoon rains in recent history, which have left around 1,200 people dead and 41 million people affected. In India more than 32 million people have reportedly been impacted by downpours.

Oh btw, in some cultures water is never ever sold. Life preserving - we give it, freely.
Want some? please take some.

Posted by: likklemore | Aug 30, 2017 5:30:12 PM | 85

@ likklemore

Do you imagine, for one fucking second, that anyone in Houston, Beaumont or Port Arthur is being denied water?

I come from a place that has more water than anybody. Keep yours.

Posted by: peter | Aug 30, 2017 5:35:34 PM | 86

Nuclear plant near Bay City, Texas, is seriously threatened by hurricane flood waters.

Common Dreams

Beyond Nuclear

Posted by: Copeland | Aug 30, 2017 6:59:58 PM | 87

@76 Oilman

A small part of my work is in natural hazard management so I'm not completely talking out of my nether regions in this area. Many jurisdictions facing natural hazards (flood, tsunami etc) have the most dangerous areas mapped so that residents living within these areas understand their situation and what they need to do when an event is imminent. You don't need or want to randomly evacuate the whole city or even most of it. You do need to set up a system where the most dangerous areas are identified, people understand the situation, and know what to do in a short time span. It's called preparation. It's not impossible and happens in many areas of the USA and abroad. Total false dichotomy and failure of the hazard planning and mitigation system to suggest that evacuation was all or nothing and that nothing could happen in time. If this is the end result of lessons from Ike then Houston has a learning disability. in part of US subject to hurricane and tsunami so snow analogies not required. Not trying to be an ass and you seem a reasonable person, but Houston's response to this challenge is as big an issue as the event itself.

Posted by: Sad Canuck | Aug 30, 2017 7:03:50 PM | 88

Disaster capitalism writ large.

NYC - Sandy

New Orleans - Katrina

Houston - Harvey

In each case they knew they were vulnerable to a "hundred-year storm". And they knew that "hundred year storms" are coming more frequently now (due to climate change).

It takes hundreds of millions, even billions, to prepare. But state and local governments just can't raise money for anything that doesn't pay for itself. They've cut taxes to the bone because wealthy people refuse to pay for anything that will benefit the poor - those people who can't afford to buy houses that won't flood and/or evacuate before the storm.

And the poor are too uneducated, disorganized, and distracted to fight back. They best they can do is save up enough to leave. Sell to the next sucker.

When disaster strikes - whether natural or man-made (i.e. 2008 financial crisis) the pols rush to help, offering aid money that is never enough and mostly goes to those who are politically connected for rebuilding contracts. They try their best to look like heroes when they are anything but.

Obama's plan (HAMP) to help homeowners is a case in point. It was really just a plan to slow the rate of foreclosure because the banks couldn't handle the flow (aka "foaming the runway"). Some homeowners were helped. Many others just paid for upkeep on their homes until the bank was ready to foreclose.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Aug 30, 2017 10:01:37 PM | 89

According to weather network (may 2017) we are experiencing the effects of almost back to back el nino, and strange weather was going to be likely....
"The ENSO cycle tends to swing back and forth between the warm and cold phases like a pendulum. Typically, after a very strong warm phase we spend an extended period of time, often a couple of years or more, in the cool phase before the next warm phase begins.

Not this year though, and that’s what makes the next few months so unusual.

After the very strong El Niño of 2015-2016, we saw a very brief, weak La Niña event. It only lasted a few months, and peaked last fall. Then during this past winter, temperatures began to warm again, as the cycle took an abrupt about-face and began to head back into El Niño territory.

This quick return to a warm pattern so soon after the last very warm event creates unique challenges for this summer’s forecast. Typically the La Niña event following a strong El Niño results in cooler ocean water temperatures across the northern hemisphere. This time, however, those cool ocean temperatures never truly got a chance to set in, and there’s still a considerable amount of lingering warmth on the map instead.

In straightforward terms, that means the normal rules don’t apply to this year’s forecast. "

Posted by: Bluemot5 | Aug 30, 2017 10:13:37 PM | 90

@ Sad Canuck...

I honestly do not think the magnitude and timing has sunk into people. The forecasting regarding the water possibilities were Wednesday, post hurricane hunter flight. The storm struck Friday.

While the neighborhoods known to and prone to flooding are known, and people in them know their situation, mandatory evac is still voluntary. They cannot (at this point) force you to leave. Not everyone has television or local television. Radio has largely switched to satellite for most people. The AM radio audience has shrunk to nothing. Just reaching those affected has been an issue. Nonetheless, MANY who knew they were hosed because of their location chose evac at the outset. Many of our problematic areas were nearly empty, at least in my county (Montgomery, due north).

There has also been quite a lot of scaremongering by ALL media regarding these storms, hyping typical Cat 1 and 2 in order to get eyeballs on screens. Media crying wolf so often, and people leaving and prepping for nothing has left everyone distrustful of them. A live report from Corpus Christi had a resident call out a reporter about their terrible forecasting and hype, as he had evacced 3x previously for storms that never came. I doubt that snippet made it to the national level, don't you?

Look at the ratings - viewership and trust in media are at all time lows. To think that people will believe the same hype when their experience tells them otherwise is foolish - we aren't primitives. There is a definite credibility issue that played much more heavily into this than will ever be discussed - media controls their own quite tightly.

Further, 48 hours is just not much time. It may seem like it, but the reality of deciding, figuring what to take and where to go is highly problematic and takes time. It takes an hour just to cross the city WITHOUT traffic. Trying to leave the area is 2-3 hours minimum, and more with this storm path.

With Ike, which was a voluntary evac post-Katrina, the freeways were gasless at all exits in 6 hours. The stores stripped bare of food in nearly the same time. People were not permitted to exit except in certain areas, and with no sanitary facilities, urination, defecation, disposal of diapers and feminine hygeine products were all roadside, along with every bit of trash. I wish I had a guy like you here during that, because it was chaos. They had a plan that looked great to all the 'experts', and went with it.

Finally, there is the flood magnitude - which is a new record dumped by a Cat 1, as it deflated wind-wise rapidly.

I fully expected a LOT of second guessing, and a lot of finger pointing from those outside the area. It's human nature. Areas outside the 100 year flood plain have their first stories inundated in areas that have never flooded in previous storms. And not by inches of water but by 5 to 8 feet of water. Your plan would not have covered this - any evac, if the forecast was correct, would have had to be major. 48 hours is totally insufficient, even to marshal enough fuel and place it.

While I believe things could have been better handled, given the timing and magnitude, the loss of life has been very low. I do believe that this will be taken into account in many ways all across the Gulf Coast. I do not believe the media understand how their exaggerations and hyperbole affected the attitude regarding evac and this storm in general. I cannot begin to count how many people cried, "BS!" when they were warned - simply because of the "cry wolf" effect.

Posted by: Oilman2 | Aug 31, 2017 1:04:45 AM | 91

@90 Oilman2

I appreciate your detailed comments, but this is not going to be viewed as a disaster preparedness success story. It will be viewed as a massive failure on multiple levels. Essentially the opposite of Ike where an ill-conceived evacuation was tried. Let's say 500,000 people in the riskiest areas were informed about the risks they faced in previous years, and trained about what to do on short notice. Evacuating this number of people would not have flooded the freeways and their absence would have taken away a lot of the work for disaster responders. It's not about making all of the problems go away. It's about trying to get the people most at risk out of the way so you can leverage your resources more effectively and deal with everyone else.

Posted by: Sad Canuck | Aug 31, 2017 2:40:30 AM | 92

scottindallas | Aug 30, 2017 9:44:10 AM | 75

A grass fed cow is more green than an irrigated lentil.

Where the cow is raised in a system that is designed to be carbon-neutral or better it might be more green than lentils grown in the middle of a desert using de-salinated water that has to be pumped long distances, but generally it is not. A grass-fed cow is generally more green that a feed-lot cow, but not as green as most lentils which are grown where expensive irrigation is not required, which is over large parts of the planet particularly since lentils are relatively tolerant to drought.

Posted by: Ghostship | Aug 31, 2017 7:50:02 AM | 93

@ Sad Canuck...

Frankly, I don't care how it is viewed, reviewed or otherwise jawboned by those who were not here. That should be expected. Resulting ideas that make sense will likely be implemented here, locally. In disaster situations, Federal assistance is always ex post facto - such is the nature of centralized solutions in a large country. At least in Texas and Louisiana, we have learned that whatever happens is on us - the Feds may show up with resources, if there is money handy, after the event is over. The media focus will quickly shift elsewhere, just as it did with other storms.

But you stirred up a good point or two:

Who pays for all of the training and preparedness?
What level of risk is acceptable?
Who is responsible for the inaccurate or late forecasting?
Which hurricane model do we employ, as many were "out to lunch"?
What media is designated to be 'hyperbole free' and used as a reliable source?
What method can we use to get people to evac from problematic zones?

I have tried to make you understand that this one really was different in many respects. Maybe think of it this way - do we prepare for Yellowstone to erupt in every volcano-risk zone? Do we evac every burp of a volcano as if it were? One size does not fit all in disasters - you have overkill and undermet in responses most of the time, at least here in the GOM.

If we applied your logic to Florida, massive evac would become a regular and costly routine - as that state is even lower than ours relative to sea level, excepting the panhandle.

As I stated earlier, I expect quite a lot of second guessing - welcome as one of the initial crowd of non-resident experts, Canuck.

Posted by: Oilman2 | Aug 31, 2017 11:34:50 AM | 94

Your State couldn't even see fit to think about evacuating the helpless
but yet you and others want us to believe that you couldn't do any thing
because this was a once in a hundred year storm. I say you sir and others that think the same are full of shit. From Wednesday to Friday Texas could have evacuated a lot of people that were going to be in the most vulnerable areas. It speaks volumes as to where ones priorities lie when one can allow things like this too happen....stop making excuses.

Posted by: Rodger | Aug 31, 2017 7:48:05 PM | 95

Awfully blithe for a company whose massive chemical plant just exploded because the company was unprepared for a completely predictable meteorological catastrophe, I'd say. Of course, over the past two days, the Arkema people have given us a master class in Not Giving A Damn.

Posted by: Rodger | Aug 31, 2017 8:04:24 PM | 96

@14/54 Correction: I know of NO brands on bottled water in the province of Qc that have no fluoride ion added to its contents. Sad..

Posted by: Lozion | Aug 31, 2017 10:57:02 PM | 97

Oilman2 @ 94

You are right about the complexity of climate models. It is easy to put together a 10 hours Powerpoint movie on all the factors that can effect climate - but who would read it? However, Carbon dioxide is easy to measure accurately as you know from watching wellhead CO2 measurement using a microGC. What is easy to measure gets measured while complex factors such a the earths magnetic field flux on cosmic ray penetration into the atmosphere effecting nucleation of water and light reflection via the clouds is hard.

As for your claim about the inability to evacuate - today's news features the mayor of Houston calling for water evacuation. The Cajun navy is doing the hard lifting as the US navy and Coast Guard do not have the resources to help.

Looks like hurricane Irma is headed into the gulf. There will be plenty of warning but little action by FEMA et al. Plan accordingly.

Posted by: Krollchem | Sep 1, 2017 2:06:21 PM | 98

@aquadraht #8
You might note that comparing a completely different brand or product in a completely different country is not relevant.
What I said was the the exact same product, in the same country, sells for approximately the same price in non-hurricane affected parts of the country already because it is a very high end product.
@likklemore #31
I never said there was no price gouging occurring.
All I pointed out is that the specific example could very well be wrong - because Smart Water is inherently an extremely expensive product. I see it on Amazon in the West Coast for $1.50 - $2 per 1L bottle. This makes it unlikely that the pictured product and included posted price is "gouging".
I don't use Fiji or Smart Water, but there are plenty of people who do. More importantly, I am aware of it as a high end branded product because there are Smart Water billboards all over the city I live in.

Posted by: c1ue | Sep 1, 2017 3:17:02 PM | 99

@ Rodger...

Excuses? I try to tell people facts on the ground down here, that's it. I have my opinions, and express them as is my right. Yes, my perspective is my own, just as yours is. I have been shuttling people since Sunday, and clearing out ruined homes since Wednesday. I type these things when I come home to scrub it off.

So, what are YOU doing to help, Rodger? Other than playing backseat driver and second-guessing Sammy?

This is BEYOND the hundred year flood planning - has that fact eve tickled the walnut you use for a brain? Nobody, not even our illustrious FEMA, has plans for what happened here. I doubt that anyone up north has plans for 60 feet of snow to fall in 72 hours, do they? Because that is the equivalent.

I said before, many people left areas known to flood - but you cannot force people to evac - they must want to. Just as I cannot force you to come here and lend a hand, much as it would delight me to see you sweating in our now sunny skies. My guess is that the nursing home evac, well, they thought they could wait it out, because they had always been high and dry, or mostly so, in previous storms. If that wasn't their reasoning, then it may be the owners of the home simply don't live here and couldn't give a hoot about their residents - which is a huge problem all over this country for nursing homes. Conflating that that singular incident in the midst of thousands of others to show how "heartless" we are is quite a pointy spear for you and for the "news" outfit that released it, eh? I doubt those in that nursing home were from other states, and yet where are their families? Why didn't they call and ask for help? Or maybe they did? I have no idea - nor do you. All you KNOW is what someone else told you on TV and how trustworthy are they?

Arkema? The reason we have so many chemical plants here is the proximity of feedstock - oil - for processing. Texas and Louisiana are the two states with the most chemical plants - whose products the rest of the country rely on. They have to be built somewhere. We elected to have them here for business reasons. We do this for ourselves and the rest of the country. Crosby is not a dense metropolis - which is why that plant is where it is and not down next to the Houston Ship Channel.

REPEAT - this was much more than a 100 year storm, Rodger. Nobody had plans for this, and nobody could have executed them in the time we had prior to landfall. Designing for a 1000 year storm would make many things you take for granted terribly expensive, whether you realize it or not. Everything is a compromise, unless you have unlimited funds and unlimited power. Texas has chemical plants because we are a large state, have oil, port facilities and refineries - makes no sense to ship things back and forth across the country unless you have to.

We are doing the best we can in light of the immense amount of water bombed on us. There has been far more loss of life in many smaller areas with lesser storms and lesser flooding. I never said Texas was perfect, but we do pull together and we do push through. If you don't like Texas, then don't come here; if you think we are stupid, then the best thing you could do is suggest that the Union expel us - that would tickle me to death. But be aware that we are one of a very few states that send the feds more money than we get back from them - where does your state sit in that regard?

Kunstler was saying we will never recover - LOL. He has no idea about Texas and Texans. And you, sitting in your glass house, far away from a disaster which nobody planned for, well, you might want to grow some bigger stones...because Texans have thick hides and windows.

@ Krollchem...

The CG and NAVY are not setup to do things like this. Nobody is. The fancy MRAPS we got from the Feds are useless in this - they don't do well in high water, go figure. What we need is what we are getting - small boats with shallow draft - fishing boats and swamp boats. No government agency has the types of boats we need - because they simply never envisioned the need, not even after Katrina. And they have great difficulty thinking small - they are the Fed, and think bigly.

Irma? Geez dude, she's not even near the Gulf yet. We will worry about Irma when she gets in the GOM. We got our hands full just now, so give us another week?

Take anything you get from the major networks with a large dose of salt - they are in this for profit, and that means getting eyeballs on TV screens and websites. The hyperbole is stunning, even in this scenario.

Posted by: Oilman2 | Sep 1, 2017 5:03:04 PM | 100

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