Parts of the Caribbean were almost entirely obliterated. Houston was submerged in raging floodwaters. And the entire U.S. was engrossed in cable news coverage as Hurricane Irma approached the Florida Keys as the biggest storm in recent memory.
Welcome to the new norm.
Hurricane season isn’t over yet, and three more storms are brewing in the Atlantic. One of those, Tropical Storm Maria, could take a similar path as Hurricane Irma last week, CNN reported.
On Sept. 7, just as Irma had flattened several Caribbean islands including Antigua, Barbuda, St. Martin, and St. Barthélemy, among others, with damage described as a “trail of destruction,” Environmental Protection Agency Administrator and notorious climate change denier Scott Pruitt got on the phone with CNN and said, hey, we shouldn’t be talking about climate change now…
“What we need to focus on is access to clean water, addressing these areas of superfund activities that may cause an attack on water, these issues of access to fuel,” he told CNN. “Those are things so important to citizens of Florida right now, and to discuss the cause and effect of these storms, there’s the ... place [and time] to do that. It’s not now.”
Is it time now, Mr. Pruitt? Because some have lost everything and we’ve got more storms barreling down on us, with at least one of them approaching at hurricane force. According to the National Weather Service and the National Hurricane Center, Tropical Storm Maria is expected to become a hurricane by the end of Sunday, and then a major hurricane by Wednesday.
While it’s still too early to know what trajectory Maria will take, current models have it pretty much following Irma’s path, at least in the Caribbean.
According to the National Hurricane Center, “Maria could also affect the British and U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico by mid week as a dangerous major hurricane, and hurricane watches could be issued for these islands as early as tonight. Interests in these areas should monitor the progress of Maria and follow any advice given by local officials.”
Hurricane watches were issued for Antigua, Barbuda, St. Kitts, Nevis and Montserrat, Guadeloupe, Saba and St. Eustatius, St. Maarten, Dominica and Anguilla, CNN reported.
Jose, which is now a Category 1 hurricane in the Western Atlantic, is moving parallel to the Eastern Seaboard, bringing rain and tropical storm–force winds to the U.S.’ East Coast, according to Weather.com.
Finally, Tropical Storm Lee, which also formed Saturday, is in the eastern Atlantic, but expected to weaken into a depression by Tuesday.
But it’s cool. Nothing to see here.