Hurricane Katrina hit Louisiana eight years ago today, killing at least 1,836 people. Now, a group of activists wants to know: Why place that morbid association on the people of the world named Katrina? A new petition argues that we should name storms after the people whose climate change-denying positions are exacerbating the problem. Look out for Hurricane Michele Bachmann.
The tongue-in-cheek (?) Climate Name Change petition calls for 50,000 signatures to be sent to the World Meteorological Organization, which names storms. The petition would ask the organization to begin naming storms after politicians who’ve denied human-caused climate change. (The group’s also provided a handy list of Republican and Democratic policy-makers who’d be good candidates.) As of writing, the petition has more than 43,000 signatures.
Scientists can’t pin down any specific storm to climate change, but on the whole, storms are getting worse because of (human-caused) climate change. Is the World Meteorological Organization going to change its naming process because of a 50,000-person petition? No. But it’s a clever way of spreading awareness about who’s making an already major problem worse.