Climate at a Glance: Water Levels – Great Lakes

The Great Lakes of North America. Image by miceking. Licensed for use by 123RF.

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Bullet-Point Summary:

  • The Great Lakes are benefiting from record-high water levels just a few years after alarmists claimed global warming causes low water levels.
  • Water levels have been above normal since 2014.
  • Alarmists will likely now try to claim global warming causes high water levels, but they have already claimed global warming causes low water levels. Sound science does not allow activists to flip what they assert is “settled science.”
  • Any attempts to claim global warming causes water-level volatility are also contradicted by scientific evidence. Water levels were more volatile than today, for example, during the late 1920s and the 1960s.

Short Summary: Alarmists and their media allies claimed during a recent, short-term decline in Great Lakes water levels that climate change was bringing a new normal of low Great Lakes water levels. For example, Think Progress in 2013 claimed, “Several different climate models for the Great Lakes region all predict that lake levels will decline over the next century.” Since then, as shown in Figure 1, below, Great Lakes water levels have reached their highest ever recorded, and have sustained abundant, above-average water levels since 2014. As often happens, alarmists claimed a climate crisis had arrived, only to be proven wrong yet again.

Click to enlarge the graph.

Figure 1: Great Lakes water levels are at record levels, and have been higher than average since 2014. Source: Great Lakes water levels measured by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Source: U.S. Geological Survey: https://www.lre.usace.army.mil/Missions/Great-Lakes-Information/Great-Lakes-Information-2/Water-Level-Data/.  


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