Raleigh's New Climate Change Hub - How Will It Help Farmers?

Feb 18, 2014

Climate change can cause droughts.
Credit http://www.flickr.com/photos/usdagov/12309025826/

Earlier this month, Raleigh was selected to host one of seven climate change research hubs in the nation. The hubs will prepare farmers to cope with  the effects of climate change on their land. 

Steven McNulty is a research ecologist at the U.S. Forest Service and director of the local climate change hub. He says that until recently, the region has been focusing mostly on understanding what climate change is and what its effects might be. "What we really haven't focused on as much as we could have is tak[ing] that information and mak[ing] sure it gets into the hands of the land owners and land managers."

Climate change scientists must make predictions and plans for the future, but the hub will look specifically at what we can do in the present. "What we learned is that really what matters is the short term," says McNulty. "So, what will these next three months look like? How well can we predict it? What does this mean as far as planting your crops? Are you going to plant earlier? Are you going to plant later?" Steven McNulty has high hopes that this information will help landowners and managers to better deal with the changing climate.