How will climate change affect where you live?
One of the interesting aspects of the administration's climate change report released today is its emphasis on how global warming is affecting or is projected to touch every corner of the United States. A few location-specific details were mentioned in the press conference – how trout in the Northwest can't thrive when air temperatures rise above 70 degrees F., for instance. But an online section offers more localized information: It divides the country into eight areas and lets you click on your region to see possible impacts.Skip to next paragraph
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Here's some of what the "Global Climate Change Impacts in the United States" report sees as already happening in various parts of the country and predicts will occur unless changes are made:
– Longer summers and higher temperatures are causing drier conditions, even in the absence of strong trends in precipitation.
– Insect outbreaks and wildfires are increasing with warming.
– Lakes are declining in area.
– Thawing permafrost damages roads, runways, water and sewer systems, and other infrastructure.
– Coastal storms increase risks to villages and fishing fleets.
– Displacement of marine species will affect key fisheries.
– Declining springtime snowpack leads to reduced summer streamflows, straining water supplies.
– Increased insect outbreaks, wildfires, and changing species composition in forests will pose challenges for ecosystems and the forest products industry.
– Salmon and other coldwater species will experience additional stresses as a result of rising water temperatures and declining summer streamflows.
– The projected reduction in snow cover will adversely affect winter recreation and the industries that rely upon it.
– Sea-level rise along vulnerable coastlines will result in increased erosion and the loss of land.
– Water supplies will become increasingly scarce, calling for trade-offs among competing uses, and potentially leading to conflict.
– Increasing temperature, drought, wildfire, and invasive species will accelerate transformation of the landscape.
– Increased frequency and altered timing of flooding will increase risks to people, ecosystems, and infrastructure.
– Unique tourism and recreation opportunities are likely to suffer.
– Cities and agriculture face increasing risks from a changing climate