The news today includes stories, from across the country (and world), reflecting the economic dangers from a changing climate.
In North Carolina, The News & Observer reports about future shortages of sand and federal money that will be available to local communities trying to replenish beaches lost to sea-level rise and coastal erosion. The burden of maintaining tourist hot spots not to mention beachfront communities will fall increasingly on local governments, as the federal government refrains from big investments, according to experts who spoke at a conference on the subject.
In Toronto, the Toronto Star reports about ski slopes taking the lead in responding to climate change for obvious reasons. A warmer climate means warmer winters and less snow, leaving those who go without to make their own. Ski slopes have embraced climate manipulation for years, having made a practice of creating their own snow when none falls naturally. (That, by the way, takes an awful lot of water and energy.)
In Georgia, Pike Family Nurseries, a 50-year old family business, filed for bankruptcy because it can't survive the extreme drought that's been plaguing the Southeast for months. While the drought can't be tied directly to global warming, more intense droughts are predicted as a consequence, with some predicting Dust Bowl-like conditions stretching virtually from sea to shining sea throughout the American South. That would clearly harm not only greenhouses, but golf courses, landscapers and any other business that relies on people, since many would no doubt move to more hospitable climes.
Meanwhile, it shouldn't go without notice, Kentucky lawmakers staged a "hearing" in which they heard from two purported experts neither a scientist who claimed that global warming was a hoax perpetrated by Al Gore, Hollywood and the media, according to the Lexington Herald-Leader. Kentucky may not be as rich in ski resorts or beaches as it is in coal, but its lawmakers might consider hearing an opposing view from one of the 2,000 or so scientists who make up the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. The Nobel Peace Prize-winning group is meeting this week to put the finishing touches on a document that spells out the state of the science on global warming, and it speaks with an authority lonely deniers can't hope to match.
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