The Two Degree Difference: Warming winters and changing snowfall trends

Two Degree Difference

After a warm summer and mild fall season (so far) our first freeze and snowfall came much later than usual. Low temperatures are a must for ample snowfall during the winter season, especially for the winter recreation industry which contributes billions of dollars to the national economy each year.

These conditions however are under a great threat from warming winters according to Climate Central.

A warmer climate effects snowfall, melting it into rain as it falls. In the United States, winters are the fastest warming season for most regions. The number of days with temperatures below 32 degrees is expected to continue to decline.

In Burlington, average winter temperatures have increased by about 7 degrees since 1970. For this reason, yearly snowfall totals are declining. These declines can also be seen in the spring and fall months for Burlington, with a slight increase in totals for the winter months.

Snow not only helps to keep the planet cooler, it significantly impacts water resources and is one of the biggest indicators of climate change.

These declines could impact the economy in recreation sectors such as snowboarding, skiing and snowmobiling. For more on how this is impacting winter recreation, head here.

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