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Who Is Spreading Lies About Houston’s “Unprecedented Flooding”?

May 27, 2015

By Paul Homewood 

 

image

http://www.nbcnews.com/news/weather/houston-texas-hit-unprecedented-flooding-seven-states-risk-n364456

 

Steve Goddard has been exposing the media lies about recent floods in Houston, but I’ll add my twopennorth anyway! 

 

 

According to NBC:

Houston Intercontinental Airport smashed its all-time record for most rainfall in one day on Monday — its 4.34 inches almost doubling the previous milestone set in 1946.

 

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One of the difficulties with comparing extreme rainfall with the past is that most historical 24 hour data was only categorised from midnight to midnight. Now with continuous collection data, any 24-hour period can be picked, thus making it much more likely that higher totals will be found.

Nevertheless, how does Houston’s 4.34 inches, or Brays Bayou’s 10.48 inches compare with historical data?

The nearest USHCN station to Houston is Liberty, just 41 miles away.

Below is the whisker plot of daily rainfall, which shows that 4 inches is perfectly common, and even 10 inches is not unprecedented. There is little sign that extreme rainfall days are increasing, and the record of 18.5 inches was set as long ago as 1994.

 

 

 

 

 

broker

http://cdiac.ornl.gov/cgi-bin/broker?_PROGRAM=prog.climsite_daily.sas&_SERVICE=default&id=415196&_DEBUG=0

 

 

The all time 24-hour rainfall record for Texas is 42 inches, which fell on Alvin between 7.00am July 25th and July 26th 1979, when Tropical Storm Claudette passed through. This is believed to also be a record for the whole of the US.

 

Even the specific claim about Houston Intercontinental Airport seems highly dubious. This was listed as the WSCMO Airport in the October 1994 State Climatological Report. On the day before Liberty recorded its 18.5 inches, the airport received 4.31 inches, so clearly the claim that this year’s 4.34 inches is not “doubling the previous milestone set in 1946” as claimed.

 

image

image

http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/IPS/cd/cd.html?_page=0&jsessionid=CAF54AB6A58CA73BA76856AC757E39CC&state=TX&_target1=Next+%3E

 

 

 

A look around the Houston area for the 17th and 18th October 1994 shows that extreme rainfall was not limited to Liberty. Houston FAA airport received more than 7 inches on each day, and double digit daily falls were common across the region.

 

image

http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/IPS/cd/cd.html?_page=0&jsessionid=CAF54AB6A58CA73BA76856AC757E39CC&state=TX&_target1=Next+%3E 

 

 

Presumably someone has been feeding NBC with this false information. The question is who?

15 Comments
  1. mkelly permalink
    May 27, 2015 6:14 pm

    Although the Who question is interesting, to me the “Why don’t they check” question is more important.

    • A C Osborn permalink
      May 27, 2015 6:22 pm

      If they did so they would have no story, other than exposing the lies that they have been told and that would never do.

  2. outtheback permalink
    May 27, 2015 6:31 pm

    The 10% true believers will not doubt it, the 80% who just go about their lives will not check it, the 10% “skeptics” don’t even read it.

  3. Jack permalink
    May 27, 2015 8:31 pm

    The reporter made a significant error of omission. The record wasn’t for any day, or any 24-hour period, it was only for May 25th, as in this was the most rainfall reported on all May 25ths in the history of Houston’s record. Record rainfall for specific calendar dates are set all the time, especially, considering that there aren’t that many May 25ths (or May 27ths or June 15ths, or October 23rds, etc.) in the historical record. It’s a whole lot of hype over nothing.

  4. gladRocks permalink
    May 27, 2015 8:53 pm

    I’m a Houstonian since 1974. The idea that 4 plus inches of rain in 24 hours is a record is ludicrous. This is a sub-tropical climate for God’s sake.

  5. Paul2 permalink
    May 27, 2015 9:44 pm

    Less lies, more delusional reporting from the Telegraph. Wrong in virtually every sentence. What an absolute ass this journalist is and makes Blanchflower seem like an economic sage by comparison:

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/economics/11633745/Fossil-industry-faces-a-perfect-political-and-technological-storm.html

  6. May 27, 2015 10:57 pm

    Reblogged this on the WeatherAction News Blog and commented:
    Everything seems unprecedented…until you dig a little further.

  7. John F. Hultquist permalink
    May 27, 2015 11:03 pm

    NBC nothing but crap

  8. May 28, 2015 2:40 am

    Reblogged this on JunkScience.com and commented:
    Under the “never let a crisis go to waste rule” the “see-there-it’s climate change” folks jumped on the bandwagon. Using other peoples’ tragedy for propaganda is a shame.

  9. May 28, 2015 12:40 pm

    Reblogged this on Climate Collections.

  10. Bill permalink
    May 28, 2015 2:24 pm

    A few years ago, I was stuck in the Houston airport all night when the tropical storm hit since all the roads out were impassible due to flooding. We were on the only flight that was allowed in before the airport was closed.

  11. May 28, 2015 2:27 pm

    “Presumably someone has been feeding NBC with this false information. The question is who?”

    Another big question is “why did the reporter(s) not do any research in order to see if the claim was true, and whether it actually had historical data meaning.

  12. Gary H permalink
    May 29, 2015 1:22 am

    Here’s how the AP reported Obama’s trip to Miami today:

    This week’s storms and floods in Texas and Oklahoma have left at least 21 people dead and at least 10 others missing.

    In Miami, President Barack Obama said the flooding should serve as a reminder of the need to make the nation more resilient against natural disasters. He said climate change is affecting both the pace and intensity of storms.

    “The best scientists in the world are telling us that extreme weather events, like hurricanes, are likely to become more powerful,” Obama said during the first visit of his presidency to the National Hurricane Center.

    “When you combine stronger storms with rising seas, that’s a recipe for more devastating floods,” he said.

  13. meto permalink
    June 1, 2015 7:00 am

    Thanks again, Paul…from the other side of the pond! Some of us with memory and ethics are trying to get the correct information out. It is difficult when the people in the big white house and main stream press (no pun intended) are all drinking the same cool aid.

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