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Shifting weather patterns: reports at ASEV-East detail climate change in northeast vineyards.

Painesville, Ohio -- Climate change is not in the future for the northeastern part of the United States, it's already happening. A review of climatological data shows that annual temperatures in New York warmed 2[degrees]F from 1970 to 2000, and average winter temperatures increased during the same time frame, according to Dr. Alan Lakso, professor at Cornell University.

Lakso was the first speaker at the "Wines & Vines in a Changing Climate" symposium held on the second day of the American Society for Enology and Viticulture-Eastern Section meeting in late July. He presented data from New York, New England and the upper Midwest, all of which showed climate changes and gradual warming.

Northeastern winter temperatures have risen 4.4[degrees]F during the last 30 years. Because winters are warmer, the number of days with snow cover are dropping across New York and New England. Lake Effect snow has increased, but that snow melts more quickly because of the overall warmer weather. In places without Lake Effect snow, snowfall declined by as much as 20 inches.

Precipitation patterns are changing as well, with average annual rainfall increasing 3 inches since 1950. The number of precipitation events of 2-plus inches of rain within 48 hours increased, and the frequency of drought is also increasing when data are compared from 1890 to 2000.

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Title Annotation:WineEast
Comment:Shifting weather patterns: reports at ASEV-East detail climate change in northeast vineyards.(WineEast)
Author:McKee, Linda Jones
Publication:Wines & Vines
Date:Sep 1, 2009
Words:228
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