Climate and Agriculture in the Southeast

Gastro Obscura: Americans Have Planted So Much Corn That It’s Changing the Weather

While driving home from a winter weather conference today, I heard a conservative radio host say that humans could not possibly change the climate because it is too big to be affected by us. Of course, this is silly because humans have been changing their local climates for a long time, and with the number of humans on the planet and the amount of greenhouse gases that we are pumping into the atmosphere, we can already see changes in the climate globally as well. Scientists have shown that the only reasonable explanation for the rises in temperature that we have seen, for example, is the increase in carbon dioxide in the atmosphere caused by the burning of fossil fuels–no other explanation such as orbital cycles, sunspots, volcanic activity, or bad data can explain what we are observing.

Here is one example of an interesting story about how agriculture in Nebraska is changing the climate there by irrigation and planting huge fields of corn, which increase moisture in the air. The warming has also changed the length of the growing season. You can read the story at