In a ground breaking analysis of National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration temperature data by the Washington Post shows major areas of the United States near or have already crossed the 2-degree Celsius mark. Climate Change has affected Michigan too. The two degree Celsius measurement is thought to indicate a doubling of CO2 levels from preindustrial levels and be a tipping point for catastrophic environmental change. Data was taken from more than a century across the Lower 48 states and 3,107 counties to create this hot spot map.
Michigan’s Climate Change is Measurable
The Grand Traverse County area in northwest Michigan has exceeded 2.3C in measurements taken since 1885. Closer to home, Huron County’s average rise is 1.5C.
The impact of this slowing rising temperature affects our environment in different ways. Warmer winters mean less ice and snow coverage. When Lake Huron freezes over the ice and snow reflect solar radiation back into space, keeping the area relatively cool. But with less ice and snow, the lake and ground absorbs the solar radiation and warms into a self-feeding cycle.
Other Impacts of Climate Change in Michigan
The other effects to agricultural growing seasons and lake water quality are a concern too. Pests, no longer controlled by cold winter weather, are affecting people and crops with increasing frequency. Toxic blue-green algae are a regular feature in Lake Erie and Saginaw Bay in late summer. It’s advisable to avoid swimming, wading and watersport activities when the pea-soup like algae is seen on the beach.
2°C: BEYOND THE LIMIT – Extreme climate change has arrived in America – Washington Post