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NV conservation group supports FERC's transmission planning rule; Memorial Day weekend includes Tornadoes and record-high temperatures; A focus on the Farm Bill for Latino Advocacy Week in D.C; and Southeast Alaska is heating homes with its rainfall.

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U.S. Supreme Court allows South Carolina gerrymander that dilutes Black voters, Sen. Ted Cruz refuses to say if he'll accept 2024 election results, and Trump calls Mar-a-Lago search an attempt to have him assassinated.

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Smokey Bear thought only "you" could prevent forest fires, but decomposing mushrooms may also help, a Native American community in Oregon is achieving healthcare sovereignty, and Colorado farmers hope fast-maturing, drought-tolerant seeds will better handle climate change.

Study reveals climate change erasing seasonal snowpacks of New England

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Wednesday, January 31, 2024   

A new study found seasonal snowpacks throughout New England have shrunk significantly over the past 40 years due to human-driven climate change.

Researchers at Dartmouth College say snowpacks have declined between 10% and 20% each decade.

Alex Gottlieb, a doctoral candidate at Dartmouth College, said by the end of the 21st century, the region could be close to snow-free in March.

"Each additional degree of warming is going to take a larger and larger chunk of your snowpack," Gottlieb pointed out. "You can see these really rapidly accelerating losses, which is what we've started to see emerge here in the Northeast."

Gottlieb noted it means less meltwater for rivers and soils downstream and potentially devastating losses for the region's economies.

Researchers found when a region warms to an average temperature of more than 17 degrees Fahrenheit during winter, it reaches what's known as a "snow cliff," when snow melt quickly accelerates. While Maine has already experienced significant snowstorms this year, the snow is not expected to become a deep snowpack.

Gottlieb emphasized it is already forcing smaller ski-related businesses to close and preventing loggers from entering forests with soggy, unfrozen ground.

"Because it's so sensitive to warming, limiting warming is really all that we can do to prevent further really dramatic snow losses and all of their dramatic consequences," Gottlieb asserted.

Gottlieb added a warming planet is not only melting snow but leading to more warming. Snow cover reflects sunlight back into the atmosphere while exposed ground absorbs it. He reported data show an increase in precipitation expanded snowpacks in large parts of Alaska and Canada, where temperatures remain cold enough to avoid a dramatic snow cliff.


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