Sunday, 22 April 2012

Cauliflowers and climate change

It's been warm and sunny for the past few weeks.  I had planted some winter vegetable seedlings a few weeks ago,  hoping to have a few early items for the kitchen.  I hadn't counted on the hot dry weather into April.  The plants are all surviving well,  though the cauliflowers are confused...
 ... there are several tiny cauliflowers (less than 5cm/2inches) across.  Normally these should have continued growing for some months and only produced the cauliflowers much later.  The weather has confused them.
While weather events (like this little hot spell) are not a significant indication of the climate of the planet being modified, the change in temperature of the earth will cause these oddities to happen more often... in the same way that we are being threatened with a greater number of more severe and disruptive weather events.

I read an interesting article that states that, while people, who deny that the climate is changing due to the warming of the planet, point to the lack of accurate measurement of the atmospheric temperature that would demonstrate the change in global temperature.  However, apparently 93% of the heat that is trapped by the increase in greenhouse gasses is absorbed by the oceans and the oceans have increased in temperature steadily over the past 20 to 50 years....  the period of time when billions of years of carbon sequestering has been squandered.

In the past, I have done as much as I could have to convince my community (and those beyond) that there is a real climate emergency.  I have changed the way that I live and I have made some small difference. By now,  I think that it is too little, too late.  It makes me sad, but I think that the recent article in The Ecologist" says it all too well... that humans might die out in 100 years or so.  The time frame is vague,  but humans may well not survive the conditions that evenuate due to the damage that they/we have done.  The earth will survive without such a damaging species.

Meanwhile, my "winter potatoes" are up....
... there should be plenty more yet, but these are looking healthy.  I have kept the chickens in their chicken run, as I will until the potato plants are all big enough to survive the chickens raiding that patch for earwigs.  I'll be anxious to see how well this crop, protected by the trees and water modified micro-climate, deals with the winter weather when it  arrives.

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