Climate Change in the Midwest

Coal Fired Power PlantThe Midwest is home to about 66 million people and most of the region is farmland that supports our country. It produces most of our countries corn, soybean, wheat, and livestock.  The weather in the Midwest has hot and humid summers and ridiculously cold winters. Despite the freezing winters (that can cause frostbite when the skin is exposed for longer than 5 minutes in some parts), the time period of winter is becoming shorter and shorter every year. Snow and ice are arriving later in the fall and it all melts earlier in the spring. Downpours in the region are occurring twice as much then from a century ago. The recent trends are likely to continue to occur which would cause the average summer temperature to increase 3 degrees in the next decade and 10 degrees at the end of the century. This would cause the summer weather in the region to feel like summer days in Texas and Oklahoma.

If these predictions turn out to become true then it could cause more heat-related deaths, sickness would spread easier, and the air quality would be much worse than ever before. When the city of Chicago endured a heat wave from July 12th-16th in 1995, there were 700 heat-related deaths! By the year 2100 it is predicted to have 3 similar types of heat waves which could quadruple the amount of heat-related deaths in the Chicago area! Heat waves are predicted to increase in frequency, duration, and severity as climate changes. This means that ticks and mosquitoes would increase in number and could survive through the projected mild winter, and that could cause the diseases of Lyme and the West-Nile Virus to affect more people.

The Great Lakes are a key feature of the Midwestern geography and society. The lakes contain roughly 78% of North America’s freshwater on the surface; it also supports transportation, agriculture, commerce, and recreation in the region. Climate change could affect it all as warmer climates could cause more evaporation and would cause water level to drop 1 to 2 feet.

Climate change in the Midwest could either help or harm agriculture, forests, and ecosystem in the area. Longer growing season could help benefit crops and forests while it could also affect them in a negative way. For farmers this climate change could hurt them really bad as wetter seasons would make it difficult for them to plant and harvest their crops.

Climate change in the Midwest could affect the entire country of U.S. as it would cost the farmer more and more every year to produce and care for his/her animals and crops. This would lead to a rapid increase in prices for our everyday food needs such as veggies, fruits, dairy, and meat. But climate change would not just affect the farmers and our wallets. Increase in heat would affect every human in the area as people would be exposed to more diseases and a higher chance to pass out. Scientists are trying to find a way on how to stop the change but it becomes more and more likely that they will not find a resolution to these problems. Life on Earth will take a turn for the worse within this century and people will have to be prepared for whatever the outcome is.

6 thoughts on “Climate Change in the Midwest

  1. You talk about all the changes that will happen if this continues, and how we don’t really have ways to stop it and don’t even entirely know what is causing it. This winter has been an example of what has been happening. We had a short, fairly warm winter with little snowfall. With our temperatures already being pretty high in April and May, the chances of a hot summer are likely.
    In this link, it talks about the cause of this climate change being global warming.

  2. This seems to be a growing problem in the United States. This has caused people in the Midwest to have several more droughts over the years then ever before. In the Midwest during the summer of 2012, their has been a bigger loss in crops then ever before. According to this will cause the United States food prices to go way up in the next few years if this doesn’t quit happening.

  3. The climate change in the Midwest is going to have a big affect on people, no doubt. Whether its from the residence of the Midwest or the consumers, we will all see a change. Its crutial that we make sure we are prepared for this disaster and what we can do to stop it. In order for us to stop this rapid change, first we need to find out what is causing it. The article in the link below talks about the gases that play a roll in this change. They also talk about how an increase in theses gases can affect people.

  4. You list multiple very interesting points in your paper, but the most intriguing part of it to me is the fact that we cannot prove anything with 100% certainty, especially weather patterns. However scary these changes can be, we can always wonder, and maybe hope, that they are just trends. But, these changes could be caused by humans, and in that case we must make amends, and quickly too, before it may be too late.

    (no questions to answer)

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