Is it real?

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Is it real?

Postby Andrew Revering » Fri Feb 02, 2007 3:59 pm

Yes. The question is not whether Global Warming exists, but rather the debate is whether or not humans are influencing it, or if it's a natural cycle.

A small group of conspiracy theorists deny global warming is an issue (from human impact) but when it comes down to it, it's a question of our pollution. I say forget the bickering, I don't think anyone can argue that pollution is a good idea. Therefore, it doesnt' hurt to be a little concious about the matter, even if you don't think we're impacting our atmosphere.

On the other hand, there is definately something going on. We haven't had a 'real' Minnesota winter in years. Right now in the Twin Cities the snow depth is about 24" below normal! Our winters are getting warmer, and there are parts of Minnesota say between St. Cloud and Alexandria that haven't had an accumulating snow yet!

What kinds of snow depths are in the BWCA right now, and what would be normal for this time of year?
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Postby deadphishphan » Wed Feb 07, 2007 8:06 pm

i had a discussion with my biology professer after someone introduced me to the idea that some people actually don't even believe in global warming, and he basically said that it IS a natural cycle, but the global warmingness of it all is from humans speeding up that cycle by hundreds and hundreds of years.
i also read something in the paper about the bwca being in danger from some sort of worms brought in there by fisherman, i'm not quite sure what that is about but if anyone knows i'd sure like to hear about it.
... oh, and the st. cloud area got its first accumulating snow yesterday. a whopping three inches. not impressive.
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Postby Andrew Revering » Wed Feb 07, 2007 8:29 pm

I just moved from St. Cloud. I was a meteorology student at SCSU.
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Postby deadphishphan » Wed Feb 07, 2007 8:39 pm

i'm from cold spring. i'm either going to SCSU or UMD next year.
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Last Stand for our Forests

Postby bwca » Mon Feb 12, 2007 10:31 am

Quotes on global warming from Dennis Lien's 10/1/06 Pioneer Press article "Last Stand for our Forests?"

Kiss the Boundary Waters, as we know it, goodbye. Do the same for the rest of the Quetico-Superior forest along the Minnesota-Ontario border.

A devastating collection of forces will change how that region looks over the next 50 to 100 years, lessening the allure that brings hundreds of thousands of canoeists and campers every year to its picturesque maze of lakes, rivers, cliffs and pines.

.....

'Existing forests just aren't going to be there,'' warned Frelich, director of the University of Minnesota's Center for Hardwood Ecology. 'There is no way they can withstand all of these changes.''

Scientists have warned for years that global warming could push trees such as jack pine out of the 1.1 million-acre Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, that white-tailed deer consume too many woodland plants and seedlings, and that lack of fire makes the forest older and more vulnerable.

Until recently, no one has tied those threads together. And no one has looked at how they'll reinforce each other.

Enter Frelich, an expert on BWCA ecology who's connecting his own earthworm and deer research to such established threats as global warming. Collectively, he said, they'll unleash a cascade of changes to an area that still looks as it did hundreds of years ago, when American Indians lived there and French voyageurs canoed through it.

What will emerge in the BWCA, one of the nation's most heavily used wilderness areas, is not altogether clear.

But under every scenario, most of the conifers that help define it won't be there. If a warmer climate is dry, an oak savanna will emerge. If conditions are wet, a different mix of trees ? maple, oak and hemlock ? will move in.

.....

For at least a decade, scientists have warned that global warming will change Minnesota. The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency has devoted a section of its Web site to the threat, focusing partly on northern forests.

"The mixed aspen, birch, maple and pine forests in the northern and eastern areas of the state would shrink in range and be replaced by a combination of grasslands and hardwood forests consisting of oak, elm and ash,'' the agency reports.

In the past century, the Earth's temperature has risen 1 degree Fahrenheit. Levels of carbon dioxide, a gas that traps heat in the atmosphere, have risen every year since continuous measurements were first taken in 1958. Increasingly, scientists believe human activity, primarily the burning of fossil fuels, is causing that warming.

With Minnesota's western prairie only 150 miles from the Boundary Waters, Frelich said, global warming eventually will push out northern conifers.

"If this border moves over 150 miles, the Boundary Waters will be sitting out in the middle of the prairie,'' Frelich said.

White pines might remain in a warmer climate, but browsing deer and lack of a fire-dependent seed source would make it hard for new pines to do well.

There's already plenty of anecdotal evidence of global warming.

For example, opossum were rarely found this far north just three decades ago, said Djupstrom. "Now, you will find dead opossum on the road all the way up to Duluth,'' he said.

http://www.twincities.com/mld/twincities/business/industries/environment/15644239.htm
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