09 December 2009

Global Warming

"Global Warming! Global Warming! Ahhhhh!"

Admittedly, I believe that global warming is occurring. I also believe that it is, to some unknown extent, affected by human activity. With that said, I am sick and tired of reading about global warming like it's a killer asteroid hurtling at us from space. I am also sick and tired of people blaming every abnormal weather development - be it snow in Texas or warmth in New England - on "Global Warming." It's bloody irritating.

In the past, I've been guilty of blaming "Global Warming" for epically-sucky winter months (see A.D. 2006 December). In addition, I've written about how global warming could affect the climate here in the Finger Lakes region of New York. I think I've written about its potential effects elsewhere, too. However, despite my occasional descents into Chicken Little-type hysteria, most of my writings discuss the potential FUTURE effects of global warming. Why the future? Because most of the weather events that get attributed to global warming - dramatically-warmer-than-average temperatures; snowfall droughts - are simply normal variations in the weather. Global warming is not to blame for these regular ups and downs. Instead, global warming threatens to raise average temperatures over a long period of time. To put it another way, don't blame "Global Warming" for the warmest November on record. Blame global warming for the fact that in fifty years, average temperatures in November will be slightly higher...

Okay, where am I going with all of this? As a few people know, I've been scheming to build the perfect hockey pond for going on a year now. In searching for information on the internet, I came across a web page today that blamed "Global Warming" for the fact that "the few community lakes or ponds that do still exist [in southern Ontario] they [sic] don’t freeze over until the end of January due to global warming." To say that I was beside myself would be an understatement. What an asinine comment!

I live in one of the warmest areas of Upstate New York, which, last I checked, is warmer than ANYWHERE in Ontario. (Yes, even you, Windsor, Hamilton, and London.) Despite "Global Warming," our ponds always manage to freeze over during the winter, providing us with at least three weeks of good skating in all but the most abnormal years. During most winters, there is approximately a week of skating in December, all but a few days in January, and three weeks or more in February. We have skated as late as the third week in March. For anyone to suggest that "Global Warming" is threatening southern Ontario's hockey traditions is ridiculous. To date, global warming has had a minimal impact on skating in southern Ontario and across the northern tier of American states. In the future, global warming may dramatically reduce skating opportunities in these areas, but to say that it has already done so is ridiculous.

To the Chicken Little Canuck who thinks global warming has turned Ontario into Southern Ohio:

Don't be a hoser. Think before you write.

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