With the sandbags on the Nicola River bank by the curve on Voght Street gone, it looks like Merritt got lucky and escaped this year’s flood season reasonably dry, but as we are all well aware, lots of other Canadian cities didn’t get so lucky.

The most recent flooding happened in a flash because of heavy downpours in Toronto. City streets and subway stations collected 126 millimetres of rain in just two hours on Monday.

While it’s not possible to point at one extreme weather event as definitively caused by global warming, this recent rash of flash floods and torrential downpours in some parts of North America, when taken with simultaneously intensifying drought conditions in other parts of the continent, appear to make a case for climate change. Some parts are getting wetter while others get drier – and the comparative suffixes there indicate a change from a previous, or normal, state.

Still, there are people who deny global warming as a cause of climate change. By nature, weather is variable, and the earth’s climate has been changing since the beginning of time, regardless of human activity. Look at the Ice Age, they say. The climate has changed since then.

OK, there is no arguing that the earth’s climate has changed, but that really doesn’t address the question at hand. Is human activity responsible for speeding up these irreversible changes with, ultimately, gradually worsening consequences?

How can a person reasonably deny that pumping carbon into the atmosphere – where it stays for thousands of years – will not have any consequences?

Where do these global warming deniers think carbon emissions go, exactly?

True, oceans do have a carbon sinking process, but it takes thousands of years and in the meantime, humans continue to pump billions of tons of carbon into the atmosphere every year. The rest of those emissions become trapped in the atmosphere as heat, and that is, plain and simple, messing with our weather.

We may have escaped apocalyptic floods in Merritt, but carbon doesn’t discriminate based on where it’s emitted from.

Whether or not that weather is a symptom of a larger problem (our collective dependency on carbon-emitting power sources, food production, transportation, manufacturing processes …) may be up for debate, but there is just no debating that there is a larger problem.

Fear mongering is not of much use to effect positive change, but common sense is. And the more common it is, the better.