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TD Manuel Headed for La Paz

Everyone hoped that Tropical Storm Manuel would have fizzled completely when it made landfall near Manzanillo, as it brought a lot of rain but no wind to the Puerto Vallarta area. Unfortunately, the bugger reformed as a tropical depression as it has continued northwest. As of this morning, the National Hurricane Center was predicting that Manuel would continue into the warm waters of the Sea of Cortez, build back up to tropical storm strength, and then take a highly unusual half circle path toward La Paz. If you have a boat anywhere near La Paz, make sure it is well secured by Friday, as the depression/tropical storm is expected to arrive early on Saturday.


Given the highly unusual predicted path of Manuel, we’d get our boat secured no matter where it was in the Sea, or even down in Cabo. Fortunately, Manuel will no longer pack that much of a wind punch.That isn’t to say that Manuel hasn’t been a killer. When it started coming up the mainland coast of Mexico a few days ago, it brought as much as 25 inches of rain. There have been more than 20 confirmed deaths as a result of flooding. Acapulco, a resort city of millions, was completely cut off, although the sun is shining there again now. It was a double whammy for Mexico because the same day Manuel caused so much damage on the Pacific Coast, mild Hurricane Ingrid whacked the Caribbean coast, resulting in more than 20 additional deaths from flooding.

We believe in climate change but we don’t believe anybody has a very good handle on what those changes might be.

Hurricanes — or rather the lack of them — are one of the reasons. For years now, climate change activists have been raving that climate change means we’re going to have more and stronger hurricanes. They may be right, but they haven’t been right so far. As it turns out, the United States is currently in the midst of the longest period of time when it hasn’t been hit by a major hurricane, a major hurricane being a Category 3 or higher. Before anybody mentions Sandy, remember that for all the damage Sandy did to New York and New Jersey, it wasn’t even a hurricane when it made landfall. New York’s problem is that it’s naturally vulnerable.

And last Wednesday the National Hurricane Center in Miami announced that Humberto had reached hurricane force. It had been blowing 75 knots not far from the Cape Verdes in the eastern Atlantic but has since been downgraded to a tropical storm. Had the Center waited but a few hours to make the announcement, Humberto would have been the latest ‘first hurricane of the season’ in recorded history.

We’re not going to read too much into these two facts, on the other hand, we’re not sure about the wisdom of starting to spend tens of billions of dollars putting dikes around every city with a shoreline.

A 60% increase in Arctic ice has effectively closed the Northwest Passage.

© Environment Canada

By the way, Douglas Pohl of Sail-World reports there’s 60% more ice in the Northwest Passage this year, effectively trapping 22 boats, some of which have already been abandoned. What’s that about?

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