6 months of summer? Researchers see the possibility

(More recent)
– A new study finds that summers have gotten longer and hotter over the years, but it also suggests that we haven’t seen anything yet. Research in Geophysical Research Letters suggests that summer in the Northern Hemisphere will last six months by the end of the century if climate change continues on its current path, Science Times reports. Scientists analyzed data from 1952 to 2011 and calculated that summer grew during that period from 78 to 95 days, according to NBC News. At the same time, winter was reduced from 76 to 73 days, spring from 124 to 115 days, and autumn from 87 to 82 days. On this trajectory, summers would last approximately six months by 2100, and winters would arrive in less than two months. For the study, the researchers defined the beginning of summer as the beginning of the warmest 25% of temperatures and winter as the beginning of the coldest 25% of temperatures.

“This is the biological clock of all living things,” says lead author Yuping Guan of the State Key Laboratory for Tropical Oceanography at the Chinese Academy of Sciences. “People argue about a 2 or 3 degree rise in temperature, but the change of season of global warming is something that everyone can understand.” In a press release, the researchers say such prolonged warm temperatures would have far-reaching effects on almost every aspect of life, in the form of increased heat waves, wildfires, wilting crops, etc. A Kent State scientist who was not involved in the study tells NBC of another possible side effect: “It could get to a point where insects like malaria mosquitoes that are normally kept out of high-altitude areas because they don’t they can survive at night, they could potentially survive longer and at higher altitudes. ” (Read more stories about climate change).


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