Tuesday, December 22, 2015

US House science chair needs walk in the woods

The Washington Post noted yesterday the continuing research which indicates massive tree die-off in the US Southwest due to a warming climate:
In a troubling new study just out in Nature Climate Change, a group of researchers says that a warming climate could trigger a “massive” dieoff of coniferous trees, such as junipers and piƱon pines, in the U.S. southwest sometime this century.
Texas Hill Country 187N-2.JPGAnd the Post today catalogues the war on climate science led by Lamar Smith, long-time Texas Congressman and current chairman of the House science committee. I wonder if Smith or his constituents in the 25-county Texas Hill Country district see the downside of his beliefs and actions?

Climate change has also been linked to increased drought and harsher wildfires - - which Texas is also suffering:

Larger, more threatening wildfires are occurring at greater rates as Texas faces lingering drought, consistent development — driven by millions of new residents and the spread of outlying suburbs — and changes in how the state’s land is used... 
The forest service responded to just one wildfire of at least 5,000 acres from 1985 to 2000, but in the last 15 years there have been fires of that size nearly every year. There were 27 fires at least that size in 2008 and 76 in 2011.

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