NECC Observer

The student news website of Northern Essex Community College, Haverhill and Lawrence, Mass.

How climate change is affecting New England

As the winters become milder and the summer becomes hotter climate change is here and it is already having a big impact for New England. 
In 2016 a Zillow report uncovered that one out of six homes in Boston will be underwater by 2100, According to the NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) temperatures are projected to climb, Polar ice caps are melting. Ocean water will swell over the coming decades.  Boston is likely to bear a disproportionate impact or rising sea levels, government scientists recently reported. The magnitude of climate change beyond the next few decades depends primarily on the amount of heat gases emitted globally and how sensitive the earth’s climate is to those emissions.
According to the First Street Foundation and Columbia University, sea level rise has cost New England more than 400 million dollars in home values between 2005 and 2017 with Massachusetts hit especially hard. One Columbia professor explained the finding simply “increased tidal flooding leads to loss in homes value appreciation. As the sea levels accelerate we expect the corresponding loss in relative homes value to accelerate as well.
Mathew Mitchitson, a Haverhill resident who owns a condo on Salisbury Beach said he couldn’t believe how far the tide comes up compared to years in the past. “When I first bought my family condo, at high tide you still had a beach to sit on, not anymore” said Mitchitson. “They were bringing in sand to the beach to use as a barrier between the ocean and the homes.”
Three industries that will be implemented by the rising temperatures in New England are farming, winter sports and fishing. With spring like weather happening sooner than the end of winter fruit trees start to bud earlier,  then another freeze comes a entire crop can be lost. 
Ski resorts are having a hard time staying open during the winter months. According to the NCA (The Northeast Winter Recreation) the winter months are an important economic resource for rural areas supporting 44,500 jobs which generate between 2.6 and 2.7 billion dollars in revenue annually. The economic viability of New Hampshire’s winter sports industry rely on cold, snowy winters.  Winters in Concord New Hampshire are warming three times as faster than the summer by heat rising 5.6 degrees warmer in 2019 than they did in the 1970s.  
Georgia Murray, an AMC staff scientist studying weather in New Hampshire wrote that warmer winters, less total snowfall and more frequent whiplash events where winter fluctuates between sudden freezes and thaws all influence the ski industry.  
Christopher Russel, a senior at Pelham High School who intends on studying at NECC next fall and is an avid snowboarder said his ski season are already too short. “I can literally ride my board in just a t-shirt and shorts by March lately, but the conditions aren’t that good.” Snow making before Dec 25th are decreasing as far as the number of snowmaking days before Feb 28th. That means that the number of days to make snow with ideal conditions are shrinking as the temperatures rise.
The New England Fishing Industry for species like Atlantic Cod, shrimp and lobsters have been impacted by warmer ocean waters.
The fall foliage has been another thing affected by climate change. Leaves are changing approximately two weeks later than they did in the 1980s.  Cooler temperatures don’t exactly cause leaves to change but they are trigger that gets the process started.
Connecticut is one of the fastest -warming states in the US. By the end of the century temperatures in Hartford will exceed 100 degrees for at least 25 days a year.  Connecticut will also experience sea level rise at more than 3 feet according to a University of Massachusetts report.
Droughts have become more prominent which also which affects the crops in Connecticut. Potential warmer deficits during summer droughts are projected to become more severe in the coming decades. 
Fading winters and hotter summers make New England the fastest warming region in America.