Study: ‘Global warming’ has made the weather better for most in U.S.
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LA Times: A new study in the journal Nature has found that 80% of the U.S. population lives in counties experiencing more pleasant weather than they did 40 years ago. “Virtually all Americans are now experiencing the much milder winters that they typically prefer, and these mild winters have not been offset by markedly more uncomfortable summers or other negative changes,” write Patrick Egan, a political scientist at New York University, and Megan Mullin, professor of environmental politics at Duke University. It’s hard to complain about sunny days, but the researchers foresee a problem. If Americans think climate change has benefited their lives so far, they’ll have little motivation to demand action or overcome apathy in responding to global warming, the scientists write.
If greenhouse gas emissions continue unchecked, 88% of the current population will live in areas where the weather is less pleasant than it was before. The paper does not predict how changing weather patterns will influence migration patterns over the coming century.
“We’ve received warmer winters without paying the price for hotter summers,” Mullin said in an interview. “But when you look forward… that’s going to shift, and Americans will experience weather, by their current preferences, they’re going to think of as worse.”