Water Online - Water experts and top Texas officials disagree on whether climate-change science should play a role in the state's water policies.
Nevertheless, other witnesses at this year's hearing came forward with warnings about the effects of climate change, disputing claims that climate science is too imprecise to be used in state water planning. Katherine Hayhoe, director of the Climate Science Center at Texas Tech University, was among those who spoke up.
"Hayhoe said her center at Texas Tech does climate forecasts for units as small as cities," the report said. "That's exactly what I do," she said, per the report. She explained that "she's done forecasts for Chicago and Austin, among others."
"Hayhoe said state leaders need to accept some hard truths" about climate change, the report said. "Climate is changing faster than it has in the history of Western civilization," she said, noting that the spike in recent summer temperatures could become the norm. "When you look at the number of days over 100 degrees in 2011, it was very unusual," she said, per the report. "But it will be normal in just a few decades if we continue on our current pathway."