The Skywriter

Why does global warming hate America?

4
Jul

Why does global warming hate America?

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Reason #1,776 to tackle climate change: It could forever ruin your 4th of July celebrations. In some places, it already is (h/t to Climate Progress):

Dozens of communities in drought-stricken areas are scrapping public fireworks displays and cracking down on backyard pyrotechnics to reduce the risk of fires.

"From a fire standpoint and a safety standpoint, it was an easy call," Burbank Fire Chief Tracy Pansini says. He recommended calling off fireworks at the Starlight Bowl because they're launched from a mountainside covered with vegetation that's "all dead."

It's the only time Burbank's fireworks have been canceled since they were first held at the amphitheater in 1994. "Ticket sales are pretty slow" for the night's events, says city recreation supervisor Cathryn Villalobos. "People are saying, 'If you're not having fireworks, we're not coming.' "

The latest science confirms that the Western U.S. will experience devastating droughts in coming years. As global warming reduces the amount of snow that accumulates in the Western mountains, and melts the snow that does fall prematurely, the Western states are being increasingly deprived of a vital source of water. As for whether these changes are caused by human behavior:

The researchers found that the changes currently affecting the U.S. West have less than a one percent chance of being due to natural variability, Barnett told National Geographic News.

His team verified that by running a variety of control tests under pre-industrial conditions that mimicked known natural cycles.

None of this is to say that fireworks are an absolute requirement to celebrate your country's independence, of course. But when you do celebrate the 4th without fireworks, don't you feel there's something missing...?

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