Earth has its warmest May and warmest YTD on record

May 2015 was Earth’s warmest May since global record keeping began in 1880, said NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Information…NASA rated May 2015 as the 2nd warmest May on record. May 2015’s warmth makes the year-to-date period (January – May) the warmest such period on record, according to both NOAA and NASA, and it is likely that 2015 will be Earth’s second consecutive warmest year on record. Five of the ten warmest months in recorded history have occurred in the past six months, according to NOAA:

NOAA’s top ten warmest global monthly departures from average
1) 0.89°C, Mar 2015
1) 0.89°C, Feb 2015

3) 0.88°C, Jan 2007
4) 0.87°C, May 2015
4) 0.87°C, Feb 1998
6) 0.84°C, Dec 2014
6) 0.84°C, Mar 2010
8) 0.83°C, Nov 2013
9) 0.82°C, Apr 2010
10) 0.81°C, Jan 2015

Global ocean temperatures during May 2015 were the warmest on record, and global land temperatures were tied for warmest on record. Global satellite-measured temperatures in May 2015 for the lowest 8 km of the atmosphere were the 5th or 4th warmest in the 37-year record, according to the University of Alabama Huntsville and Remote Sensing Systems, respectively.


Click to enlargeImage credit: National Centers for Environmental Information

Departure of temperature from average for May 2015, the warmest May for the globe since record keeping began in 1880. Record warmth occurred across most of Alaska, parts of tropical South America, much of southern Africa and The Middle East, and parts of northwestern Siberia. Only part of the central United States, far west central Australia, Iceland, and part of Far East Russia observed temperatures characterized as “cooler than average” for May.

Please RTFA for lots more detail. Visiting here and reading the sources I try to reference for information on climate change puts you a couple of lightyears ahead of the papier mache, let’s-pretend-to-be-skeptics that populate the sites of conservative know-nothings who most of all fear diminishing margins for fossil fuel profiteers.

Check over on the blogroll sidebar of sites I recommend and try realclimate and 350.org.

Darwin Award candidate found on roof of building in Richmond, England


Click to enlargeJustin Tallis/AFP

A suspected stowaway has been found on the roof of a west London office building after plunging to his death from a British Airways flight.

The man is believed to have climbed on to the Boeing 747 before it flew more than 8,000 miles from Johannesburg in South Africa to Heathrow.

The victim fell on to the offices of the online marketplace Notonthehighstreet.com on a busy road below the flight path in Richmond, south-west London, on Thursday morning. Flight data reveals the plane would have been at an altitude of around 1,400ft when it passed over the area.

A second man, understood to be 24 years old, survived the journey and is in a serious condition in hospital. He is believed to have been found unconscious in the undercarriage of the plane at Heathrow before the other man’s body was discovered…

There was sympathy, too, from Hadt Khoshkbar, who runs a printing business next door to the Notonthehighstreet.com offices, recounting how he had come to the UK from Iran in 1976.

This is at least the third time that bodies have fallen from aircraft in this area. The other one I can remember was in Mortlake,” he said…

Colin Naidoo, a spokesman for Airports Company South Africa, which manages Johannesburg’s OR Tambo airport, said authorities were still investigating how the stowaways made it past security…

There have been previous cases of stowaways plunging to their deaths in west London after smuggling themselves on to planes. They hide in the landing gear where they are exposed to the elements and endure sub-zero temperatures. Most are killed by the cold and lack of oxygen at high altitude.

Someone tells somebody else about this great idea about how to get to England or wherever dream jobs supposedly exist. And another someone who doesn’t know better tries it. And dies.

243 medical “professionals” busted in $712 million Medicare fraud


Digitizing medical records tracks provider accounts as well as individual histories

The U.S. Justice Department charged 243 people, including 46 doctors, nurses and other medical professionals, with defrauding the Medicare system of $712 million through false billing.

Attorney General Loretta Lynch announced the charges…calling the case the largest sweep of individuals in the history of task forces that target such fraud.

“The defendants charged include doctors, patient recruiters, home health-care providers, pharmacy owners, and others,” Lynch said. “They billed for equipment that wasn’t provided, for care that wasn’t needed, and for services that weren’t rendered.”

The defendants were accused of money laundering, conspiring to commit health-care fraud and violating anti-kickback laws. The scams involved treatments ranging from home health care to psychotherapy. The Justice Department alleged that participants in the scams submitted claims to Medicare and Medicaid for treatments that were medically unnecessary and often never provided…

Government efforts to combat health-care fraud led to the recovery of $3.3 billion in taxpayer dollars in the fiscal year that ended Sept. 30, according to a March report. During that period, U.S. prosecutors opened 924 new criminal health-care fraud investigations, the two departments said in the joint report.

The medical-industrial complex still hasn’t learned how to steal from taxpayers with the skill and cunning of their counterparts in the military-industrial complex.

Tub-thumping politicians in Congress blather day-in and day-out that they must oppose real single-payer healthcare because the people can’t be trusted to treat the system honestly. Yet, time and again, the real crooks turn out to be the practitioners, profiteering frauds within the medical community.

Long-banned chemical continues to kill

Fifty-three years after Rachel Carson, in her book Silent Spring, first raised concerns about the safety of the pesticide DDT, the chemical once again is in the news.

Public health researchers in California have published findings that connect maternal exposure to DDT during pregnancy to breast cancer—not in the exposed mothers but rather, 40 or 50 years later, in offspring exposed in utero. The article was published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism. In it, the authors looked at the rates of breast cancer in a group of 9,300 women born between 1959 and 1967. Of these, 118 developed breast cancer…

The authors used a well-established study approach called case-control: the 118 daughters with breast cancer (cases) were paired with 354 breast cancer-free daughters born at the same time (controls) and standard clinical variables extracted from each group. In this way, variables like race, maternal weight, lipid profiles, and breast-feeding history could be eliminated as likely causes of any difference in breast cancer rates.

By this analysis, the mothers with high rates of detectable DDT during pregnancy produced daughters who, 50+ years on, had three or four times more breast cancer than daughters of Moms with substantially lower DDT levels. A potentially very big deal for sure.

There is a large and important caveat in the analysis however. The investigators also examined the frequency of breast cancer in mothers, comparing the rate between cases and controls. Here, there was a large and very strong tilt: About 20 percent of daughters with breast cancer had a mom with the disease; in the controls, only 4 percent had a mother with breast cancer. Thus, some and perhaps most of the risk of breast cancer might be explained not by DDT exposure but genetic predisposition.

Which does not exclude DDT as an amplifying effect on genetic risk—but it does deflate some of the headline grabbing excitement the article already has claimed.

The Daily Beast further classifies divergent opinions of the results into Right vs Left instead of the fact that conservative denial is almost wholly grounded in ideology. The counterpoint being individuals and groups dedicated to science and scientific method for progress – a truly conservative style.

That the Daily Beast sees only the conflict between political entities is a reflection of their own tidy journalistic ideology. Historically, properly termed sophistry – that truth lies only safely between opposing contradictions.