Where’s Winter?

Much to our surprise, this winter has produced more sun than snow. The weather is warmer, hitting temperatures as high as 40 and 50 degrees across the tri-state area.

It’s difficult to understand why we aren’t experiencing our normal frigid winter and determine whether or not there are more serious, underlying problems at hand.

Kyle Seiverd, Adjunct for the Department of Biology, said that this year’s warm weather and lack of snow isn’t cause for concern. “The most important thing to be concerned with is the trend,” said Seiverd, “If this becomes a normal thing for the world, then I’d be alarmed.”

He continued, “Harsh cold days help kill invasive species, such as the southern pine beetle and spotted lantern fly.” Seiverd explained that if the weather continues to stay warm like this during the cold season, there will be a ripple effect that could potentially disrupt the organization of our ecosystem.

Seiverd hopes that this generation’s understanding of climate problems provides hope for our planet’s future. “Young people show climate literacy at a much higher capacity than some older generations,” concluded Seiverd.

David Merson, Adjunct for the Department of Political Science and Sociology, concurred, “The earth is screaming in pain. We should listen.”

I agree. We don’t pay attention to the signs that the earth gives us, alerting us to the fact that something is wrong. Just because something unusual may feel good doesn’t mean it is good.

John Morano, Professor for the Department of Communication, likewise believes that we must confront environmental threats with multi-faceted approaches.

He began, “The lack of snow this year might be a symptom of what’s to come. Nonetheless, let’s not ignore the extreme weather events, like catastrophic storms, that have become more intense than we’ve typically seen.”

According to Morano, these weather events and patterns are likely to wreak havoc on wildlife populations.

“Nature’s balance is both fragile and interconnected,” explained Morano, “Birds that migrate up the shore and expect horseshoe crabs to have been reproducing and leaving a bounty of eggs to nourish them on their migration might miss that opportunity if their internal clock causes them to arrive after the horseshoe crabs have reproduced.”

Based on experts’ opinions, I can’t help but wonder what the future holds for us.

Jenifer Yax-Monray, a sophomore biology student, feels that we are in danger, “It’s pretty odd that it isn’t freezing cold compared to the past few years… Climate change is a huge and sad issue.”

She underscored her concern over the fact that many of us are aware of these issues and yet fail to make any tangible change. “We may not have a future if these issues aren’t handled,” continued Yax-Monray. “As some scientists have said, we may only have around five years left to start changing our harmful ways before natural disasters happen.”

Fareedat Adeleke, a sophomore biology student, agreed, “We have so many issues going on, and nobody is doing anything about it, and even if we are doing something, it isn’t helping a lot.”

Overall, it is apparent that global warming is an issue. Although the weather is terrific, this temperature change is unnatural for our planet.