* A majority of scientists will continue to note that: (1) the earth’s climate is changing, (2) humans have some influence over that, and (3) projections are dire if no further action is taken.
*In the short term, pressure systems will build as hot air blows from various directions.
*Long-term trends show that high and low pressure fronts may generate thunder and lightning but little concrete action.
*Optimistic prognosticators indicate that a pressure system built on scientific facts and common sense practices is slowly building–and less threatening climate patterns could dominate in the future. Other forecasters are less hopeful.
A recent U.S. federal report finds that climate change is affecting the natural environment, agriculture, energy production, land/water resources, and human health. Some government officials disagree with the findings, saying the predictions are “worst-case scenarios.” One of the lead authors of the report counters those statements with a list of “five misleading myths” that are being promoted by climate change deniers.
Agriculture and Climate:
Commentators and experts reacted to the report with predictions and observations about specific sections of the United States. This Kansas City publication focuses on potential dangers for Midwest agriculture, and another response says that effects will vary, but major crops in various areas are posed to suffer. A livestock expert also points out that meat production is not a major culprit for climate change–he says modern practices make livestock agriculture more productive and environmentally friendly.
A Blast of Hot and Cold Air:
|What we’re all trying to avoid.|
According to this report, combined data from NOAA and NASA show that the twenty warmest years on record have all come since 1995. Of course, old timers can point out extreme weather seasons in the past. Dad was a teenager when the 1940 Armistice Day blizzard “froze roosting birds to branches in the trees” and “stranded children in the one-room school houses that dotted the rural areas.” And the heat waves of the 1930s were burned into the psyche of some of the farmers we worked for when we were kids: “Folks slept in their front yards and went to the town ice house to buy chips of ice. Main Street was melting and horses were dying on the farm.” A little hyperbole didn’t go wrong either: “It was so hot the eggs were hard boiled before we even cracked them to fry on a car hood, and the cows were only producing evaporated milk.”
by dan gogerty (map from noaaclimate.gov, report cover from globalchange.gov, and cartoon from pinterest.com)
Your donation to CAST helps support the CAST mission of communicating science to meet the challenge of producing enough food, fiber and fuel for a growing population. Every gift, no matter the size, is appreciated.