by Ryan V. Stewart
March 2, 2016
Climate change is arguably the most pressing issue facing the world. From intense droughts punctuated by short periods of heavy rainfall, to the spread of agricultural pests and parasites, to rising sea levels and the fragmentation of vital ecosystems, there many stories on the woe that freak weather patterns are inflicting, and will continue to inflict. This has dire implications on a global and regional scale, and Connecticut is no exception.
According to “The Impacts of Climate Change on Connecticut Agriculture, Infrastructure, Natural Resources and Public Health,” a climate change report from 2010 created by a state government subcommittee, “Most of the agricultural features assessed … were found to be highly impacted by climate change, and most of these impacts were negative.” The report also said that due to warming in lower elevations “maple syrup production in Connecticut may be impossible by 2080,” and that by next century the intensity of droughts and precipitation events will significantly increase. The report notes that shellfish will be harmed by rising ocean temperatures, and that due to climate-driven sea-level rise and storm surges, waste runoff and overflows will become more likely to spread pathogens along coastal waters.
Connecticut can do its part, and help set an example for the rest of the U.S., by fast-tracking renewable energy and minimizing the use of fossil fuels as soon as possible.