txH2O highlight: Texas is vulnerable to climate change

April’s txH2O highlight is about the predictions of climate change impacts in Texas. The article, Texas is vulnerable to climate change, from the winter 2008 climate change issue, mentions future challenges resulting from increased populations, hotter temperatures and high greenhouse gas emissions.

Two Texas A&M researchers were interviewed about the vulnerabilities Texas may face because of the changing climate, Dr. Bruce McCarl, Regents Professor in Texas A&M University's Department of Agricultural Economics and Dr. Gerald North, Distinguished Professor Emeritus in Texas A&M's Department of Atmospheric Sciences.

"My whole focus," McCarl explained, "has been to estimate what damages arise if the 'bulldozer' of climate change hits us and what opportunities we have for agriculture to help mitigate them."

Climate change expectations include hotter temperatures, more concentrated rain, higher soil evaporation rates, greater frequency of droughts, higher sea levels with increased hurricane intensities along with lower precipitation and diminished water supplies.

"Texas will face a number of challenges, and its main problem is water," North said. "Other things, such as increased population, the decline in the Ogallala Aquifer, and increased urbanization will combine with climate change to make it worse."

Ten years later, there is even more climate data available to back up these predictions. Read the full article, Texas is vulnerable to climate change.

Share this post