VERIFY: Is climate change to blame for weekend flooding?

S&WB Executive Director blamed the storm on a changing climate, but the state's climatologist says it's too early to tell.

NEW ORLEANS -- The head of the Sewerage & Water Board on Saturday blamed climate change for part of the failure of the pumps to keep up with the heavy rain.

So we decided to verify whether climate change is to blame.

We had a crew in Baton Rouge seek out LSU professor and state climatologist Barry Keim who, in a nutshell, said it’s too early to tell.

“That’s a big question, and I shrug my shoulders. I really don’t know the answer to that,” he said.

But, Keim added, he is seeing changes in the atmosphere consistent with climate change that could have some effects on storm systems.

“If the climate does warm -- and it has been warming globally -- the warmer temperatures have a greater capacity to store moisture, and moisture can be infused into the storm systems,” Keim said.

He continued that no single event can determine if climate change is to blame, but he and other scientists will look for patterns to develop as they study the possibility.

© 2017 WWL-TV


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