Year 2, Month 7, Day 30: What Would Teddy Roosevelt Say?

The Indiana Post-Tribune runs an article on the same NRDC-sponsored report on the National Park System and its vulnerability to climatic transformations:

Beach erosion, sweltering summer temperatures and fierce storms are well-known occurrences at Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore. But according to a new report on Great Lakes national parks climate change, these events will intensify over the next 100 years, along with loss of plant species and economic activity at the park.

According to the report, “Great Lakes National Parks in Peril: The Threats of Climate Disruption,” released Wednesday by the Rocky Mountain Climate Organization and the Natural Resources Defense Council, temperatures at the national lakeshore are projected to rise 5 degrees by 2070, the equivalent of moving the climate of Raleigh, N.C., to Northwest Indiana. By 2100, average temperatures may rise an additional 3 degrees, bringing the climate of Gainesville, Fla., to the region.

Maybe some of the denialists will wake up. Sent July 14:

The national park system is one of our country’s greatest treasures. Since its inception, Theodore Roosevelt’s visionary initiative has offered countless visitors a chance to experience nature’s richness, complexity and beauty, laying a foundation for the contemporary environmental movement. Now the parks are playing another significant role in educating us all about the dangers of climate change. Living in cities and suburbs, sheltered from extremes of weather by heated, air-conditioned dwellings, we can easily dismiss the signals of the natural world — but the suffering of a cherished park space cannot be ignored. The RMCO/NRDC report confirms that climate change is a present-day crisis, not the responsibility of future generations. Our national parks are telling us loud and clear: we must transform our national energy economy rapidly to a focus on renewables if we are to mitigate the worst effects of a century’s worth of fossil fuel consumption.

Warren Senders

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