Jun 1, 2017

Maine's climate already changing, with more to come

Maine
USA
by
Steve Collins
,
Sun Journal
Graph from a 2015 study by the Climate Change Institute and Maine Sea Grant at the University of Maine.
Graph from a 2015 study by the Climate Change Institute and Maine Sea Grant at the University of Maine.

Though people tend to talk most about climate change during a heat wave or in the wake of a terrible storm, the reality is that it’s a slow, subtle shift that’s scarcely noticeable except over the long haul.

But scientists say that Maine is very much feeling its impact.

From a rise in the number of ticks to the decline in the number of northern shrimp offshore, the state is seeing the consequences of an increase in the average annual temperature by 3 degrees since 1895.

The frequency of extreme weather events, from ice storms to torrential rains, has been increasing and will likely to become even more common as the world heats up further, scientists warn.

The accompanying rise in ocean levels, caused by melting glaciers, means that salt marshes are in trouble, flood zones are growing and agricultural zones shifting.

And some say it will get worse if the country fails to take action on climate change.