Sapna Sharma, a professor of biology and an expert on global climate impacts at York University in Toronto, is studying the uneven number of climate disturbances in the Great Lakes region. She said the disparities would worsen as the climate progressed – if places like Michigan did not act now to prepare for future violations.

“This is a problem that can and must be addressed immediately, to further degradation of our communities and further degradation of infrastructure,” Sharma said.

The Great Lakes region is relatively lucky, climate experts say, because its expected climate disturbances are more manageable than, say, worsening western forest fires, rising seas or prolonged drought.

Instead said State Climatologist Jeffrey Andresen, worsening downpours are the biggest threat to the region. But there is a solution: overhaul our infrastructure to better absorb floodwaters, thus preventing massive floods that have reduced lives. Houtan office Midland office Detroit Subway and have caused billions of dollars in damage in recent years.

“We need to build more capacity in how we drain water from the landscape,” Andresen said. “And it’s worth it.”

In southeastern Michigan alone, the Great Lakes Water Authority estimates it will cost the same $ 20 billion make the region’s infrastructure capable of absorbing enough rainwater to avoid floods similar to the one that damaged tens of thousands of homes last summer. Planned works include the modernization of drainage pipes and the reconstruction of ancient pumping stations designed to prevent sewer overflows.

Monday’s report contains more bad news on this front: world governments have set a goal of limiting warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 degrees Fahrenheit), a challenge that will require the world to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050. This is the goal of the world of the nation together not on the way to meeting. And even if they succeed, by the end of the century it is expected that climatic extreme weather events will quadruple.

There are other alarming statistics in the Great Lakes region:

  • 5: This is the reduction in the annual ice cover of the Great Lakes over the decade in percentage points since the start of recording in the 1970s.
  • 5679: the number of lakes in the Northern Hemisphere that will be forever lose the winter ice cover in this century, when fossil fuel use will continue unabated (including many in the Great Lakes region).
  • 16: Annually fewer days of annual frosts compared to 1951.
  • 684: Miles from Market to Louisville, Kentucky. If people fail to contain their emissions, scientists say the UP climate – and the plants that can thrive there – will be similar to modern Kentucky by the end of the century.

Sen. Adam Hollier, Detroit, is part of a contingent of Democrat lawmakers who have proposed $ 5 billion a plan for climate preparedness in Michigan. He said he had noticed in recent years that climate change in Lansing was becoming more aware as Michigan residents began to feel the effects, ranging from flooded homes to shortening ice fishing seasons, and demanding action from their elected representatives.

“Some people still want to argue about why,” changes are happening, he said, “but I don’t think it makes a difference if you lost everything in your basement, if your home lost value by $ 60-70,000 or you lost value your grandmother’s photo album, or your wedding dress, or the things that make your life precious ”.

Deputies of the House of Representatives are considering a proposal to spend $ 3.3 billion on water infrastructure, including efforts to reduce floods and sewage overflows. And while Republican legislative leaders have not clearly formalized the discussion in terms of climate preparedness, a spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirky said last year at Bridge Michigan that Michigan’s infrastructure “needs to be able to withstand the weather 200-, 500 -, the 1000th anniversary of the event.

Shirkey’s spokesman did not respond to a request for comment Monday. A spokesman for House Speaker Jason Wentworth said Wentworth “did not have time to consider” the proposal on water costs.

Regional climate experts have said that in addition to spending money on training, Michigan and the rest of the world should rush into the future after oil. The authors of the global report on Monday warn that society risks “missing a short and fast-closing window of opportunity to ensure a viable and sustainable future for all.”

Governor Gretchen Whitmer has set a goal to make the state carbon-neutral by 2050. The state task force will soon publish a final report outlining the steps Michigan must take to achieve that goal.

At the national level, legal and political resistance has held back President Joe Biden’s climate agenda.

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