In other news, the UN's International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has once against certified that Iran is complying with the terms of the nuclear deal.
Meanwhile, the U.S. budget deficit for the month of October increased by nearly 40 percent year-over-year. Time for some deficit-exploding tax cuts!
Finally, a new study from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences says the extreme rain we saw during Hurricane Harvey could become the new normal.
Study author Kerry Emanuel, a meteorology professor and hurricane expert at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, found that what was once an extremely rare event — 20 inches of rain over a large area of Texas — could soon be almost common.
From 1981 to 2000, the probability of 20 inches of rain happening somewhere over a large chunk of Texas was 1 in 100 or even less, Emanuel said. Now it’s 6 in 100 and by 2081, those odds will be 18 in 100, he said.
Of course, if 20 inches of rain becomes common or normal, something even more extreme will become possible.
Texas state climatologist John Nielsen-Gammon said he was struck by the potential for much higher rainfall that Emanuel’s simulations predict for the future and how important it is for the design of critical structures like dams and nuclear facilities.
“If the worst-case precipitation scenario is getting worse, as Kerry’s study and other evidence implies, that safety margin is shrinking,” Nielsen-Gammon said in an email, highlighting Emanuel’s results that also show the worst-case storms becoming wetter and more common.