We have all heard it’s warming because of climate change but by how much? Take a look at this map and you’ll see temperatures have warmed anywhere from 1.5 degrees to over 4 degrees nationally. What about the Bay Area? The data below shows San Francisco has warmed 2.9 degrees since 1970 and 1.7 degrees in San Jose. California as a whole has warmed 2.9 degrees, which is more than the national average of 2.6 degrees.
What impacts has the warmer temperatures brought? It’s meant increasing drought years, more wildfires and less Sierra snowpack. In fact, there’s only been 2 years since 2012 where Sierra snowpack has finished above 100% of normal. Nationally, Alaska was the fastest warming with temperatures up 4.3 degrees leading to melting glaciers. Concentrations of heat trapping CO2 has also increased by nearly 30%.
While this data is disheartening there’s new research that shows we can all make a difference and avoid these consequences from getting worse with substantial cuts in emissions and greenhouse gases. This is something we can all participate in by lowering our carbon footprint. You can find out more about our changing climate and all of our stories in this link.