Posts Tagged ‘Farm States’
Thursday, August 9th, 2012
by George Washington, Washington’s Blog
The progress of the drought has been horrific:
Unfortunately, the one certainty is higher food prices.
Much of the area hit during the Dust Bowl – and again today – is naturally prone to drought. As the Weather Channel notes:
The area is known as semi-arid and is naturally prone to drought and high winds. In fact, early settlers referred to it as the “Great American Desert.”
Interestingly, HowStuffWorks notes:
About 90 percent of the 450 million hectares of arid land in North America suffers from moderate to severe desertification [source: Center for International Earth Science Information Network]
But as Ezra Klein notes, there have been much bigger droughts in the distant past:
Scientists have looked at data from tree rings and found (pdf) that North America endured brutal “megadroughts” during the medieval period. These droughts were similar in intensity to today’s dry spells, but lasted 20 to 40 years and were possibly linked to massive La Niña ocean events:
Fortunately, we haven’t seen anything that bad in recent times.
The first seven months of 2012 were the warmest on record for the nation. And August 2011 through July this year was the warmest 12-month period on record, just beating out the July 2011-June 2012 time period.
Some say this proves global warming is a dire threat, while others say that it is dishonest to claim that short-term weather proves anything.
But we can all agree on the following:
- We should use benign technology – and not cures which are worse than the ailments (like sending nearly microscopic particles of specially made glass into the Earth’s upper atmosphere or cutting down trees and burying them) – to address climate
- Reducing soot is crucial … and economically feasible
- Imposing fascism is never justified
Tags: Arid Land, Drought, Droughts, Dry Spells, Dust Bowl, Early Settlers, Earth Science Information, Earth Science Information Network, Ezra Klein, Farm States, Food prices, Great American Desert, High Winds, International Earth Science, Medieval Period, Ocean Events, oil, Science Information Network, Source Center, Tree Rings, Weather Channel
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