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Study Finds New Evidence of Climate Change in California

Aug 8, 2013

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Credit Andrew Nixon / Capital Public Radio

More wildfires.  Warmer lakes.  And higher temperatures.  A new study from the California Environmental Protection Agency cites those and other signs that climate change is having a growing impact across the state.  Ben Adler has more from Sacramento.

CalEPA has been tracking environmental indicators since the year 2000 in hopes of measuring the effects of climate change.  Here are some of the findings in the new study, based on 36 different indicators:

-       California’s high, low and average temperatures are going up – especially at night.

-       Wildfires have burned nearly twice as many acres since 2000 as the previous 50 years combined.

-       There’s less snow melting in the spring, meaning winter temperatures are warmer and storms that might previously have brought snow are bringing rain.

-       And some animals and plants are migrating to higher elevations in search of cooler weather.

The study does offer one piece of good news: California industries are increasing their energy efficiency – and decreasing their greenhouse gas emissions