Global Warming is Real.
It boggles my mind that there are people still to this day who deny that global warming is real. Well, I don’t know if there is any simpler way to put this other than, it is. People who have been in denial for years can usually be quoted saying, “I don’t see the changes” or “If global warming is real, than why is it 10 degrees below zero?”.
After reading some of the work produced by Dan Kraker covering the issue, I really felt that he brings a great debate to the table for all of the non believers. We live in the state of Minnesota, so yes, we do have to deal with treacherous winters. But that doesn’t mean that our own states environment isn’t being effected by global warming because it is. Kraker explains the issue in a way that uninformed citizens can comprehend.
In the article Climate Change In Minnesota: More Heat, More Big Storms, Kraker interviews state climatologist Greg Spoden. I think Spoden does a excellent job of putting global warming into terms for which people who don’t believe in it can better understand.
“Think baseball. Weather is the individual at-bats and the individual games. The batting averages and the long-term statistics are the climate. If your best hitter goes 0-for-4, that’s not necessarily a trend and you’ re not going to trade him or cut him. It’s a body of work over a season or many seasons,” said Spoden.
Kraker also does a good job of including statistics to back up his claims. I actually really like how he choose the sources in which he did because he keeps everything local to the state of Minnesota. I am going to look at two examples.
The first example looks at our state’s rising temperatures. Luther Opjorden and his family have been recording the high and low temperature for each day since 1893 in the small town of Milan on the state’s western side. Since his family has started recording, Milan has gotten about two degrees warmer on average.
“You really don’t notice it, but a degree or two over the long haul is significant,” Opjorden said.
By keeping it local and using this example, I think it serves as a better example versus one being conducted down in Texas how the average temperature is on the rise. It helps Minnesotans understand this is happening here at home.
Another look at how our state’s rising temperatures are causing negative effects is by studying our ecosystems. “Some species have a harder time adjusting to changes and might not tolerate a warmer Minnesota, while others will be more fit to survive. One species becoming more fit for survival is the tick. The number of Minnesotans diagnosed with the Lyme disease has more than tripled since the 1990s, in part because of an expanded tick range,” said Kraken.
Ticks are able to survive longer and expand their territories into new ecosystems. This also ties together with another article published by Kraker titled Tick-triggered allergy surfaces in northern Minnesota which explores a new disease being report in our state in regards to the lone star tick.
Because ticks are becoming more common, we are starting to be introduced to new diseases we never had thought would expand all the way up to Minnesota.
The second example I am going to explore is when lakes form their first layer of ice. John Latimer of Grand Rapids has been recording when the first layer of ice forms on Lake Crooked for three decades now and has began to see a trend.
“This lake has been on average a half a day later a year for 30 years,” he said, standing on two-inch thick ice late last fall. “ So it’s 15 days later now than it used to be.”
By staying local once again, it helps paint the picture that even though lakes are still freezing here in Minnesota, its critical to notice that ice is forming later than usual. Personally, I enjoy ice fishing and so do a lot of my friends. I couldn’t imagine a winter with no ice on the water, but it is starting to seem more and more like a reality each year.
So whether you believe in global warming or not, I hope that you are able to see that these are trends happening right now and could lead to be detrimental. Not only to Minnesota’s ecosystem, but also our state’s economy which revolves around our plentiful natural resources which we have been blessed with.