Department of Climate and Space Sciences and Engineering in the College of Engineering at the University of Michigan

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Professor Penner discusses climate change in the Detroit Free Press

Posted: August 13, 2013

Professor Penner discusses climate change in the Detroit Free Press

Taking action for the climate now is key for Michigan’s future, according to Professor Joyce Penner’s commentary in the Detroit Free Press.

The piece, co-written by Michigan State University Professor David Skole, states, “Last summer seemed like a climate change prediction come true.”

Indeed, Michigan experienced the warmest March on record followed by frosts and drought, resulting in “hundreds of millions of dollars in agricultural losses.”

This year has been better for agriculture, but Penner and Skole say that does not mean climate change has gone away. “Without proper and immediate intervention, the negative impacts of climate change will continue to grow.”

One of the impacts of climate change has been a significant increase in extreme weather. “Our record high temperatures now outnumber our record lows by 2 to 1, and floods and droughts are becoming much more commonplace.”

To limit the human contribution on climate change, Penner and Skole list a few steps people can take. “We can clean our air and reduce heat-trapping gases by asking for state and federal carbon standards for existing power sources. We can create jobs and reduce our dependence on out-of-state-sourced coal by increasing our use of in-state renewable energy and supporting robust energy-efficiency efforts.”

The driving message is this: “If we remain silent and fail to act on one of the most pressing issues of our time, climate predictions indicate that Michigan stands to lose much more than cherries.”

To read the full story, click here

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