Letter: Impact of climate change | PostIndependent.com

Letter: Impact of climate change

Here on the Western Slope of Colorado the agriculture industry is crucial. Farm and ranch operators depend on their ability to grow and sell world-class fruit, pastured-raised beef, hops, hay and more to support a livelihood most love.

No, climate change will not destroy the Earth, but it could make a lot of people’s jobs and lives more difficult. How much climate change will cost, and how humans and other lifeforms fare if we don’t take action now to reduce carbon emissions, remain unanswerable questions. But storms, droughts, floods and other natural disasters are much more intense now with global temperatures rising. Already, as a result, people are suffering. And agriculture and life on the Western Slope could be impacted greatly.

Working on a farm has never been easy work, but it has become even more difficult due to the unpredictable weather. This year the Western Slope had an unseasonably warm winter followed by an abruptly cold, frost-stricken spring. That extreme weather pattern managed to kill a large portion of fruit trees and other crops. Another result of climate change is low snowpack. Snowpack in Colorado is still below average in some areas despite a historically wet May. Snow melted in these areas faster than it accumulated due to warm temperatures.

It is clear that the way we choose to live and the way we choose to produce energy needs to change drastically if we want to maintain viable farm and ranch businesses and communities in western Colorado. Please support the Clean Power Plan to reduce carbon emissions and as a step toward mitigating our contributions to climate change.

Scott Horner

Paonia


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