Posted by Taylor at Arbor Teas on August 21, 2010
Earlier this week, NASA released a report confirming the meteorological speculations: 2010 is expected to be the hottest year on record, based upon the temperatures witnessed so far this year. NASA's report, which can be found here, states, "2010 is likely, but not certain, to be the warmest year in the GISS record." GISS refers to the Goddard Institute for Space Studies, NASA's program for studying global change. This is bad news for tea lovers - whether you're environmentally-minded or not! In recent history, the tea producing world has encountered serious trouble from the onset of global warming, from a variety of climate-related hardships. Here are a few examples from our prior post on the impact of global warming on tea production:
1) Drought in China leaving low-lying plants covered in dust, blocking crucial sunshine;
2) Intense rainfall contributing to erosion of slopes and loss of plantings in India;
3) Unprecedented frost in Rwanda, causing loss of 70% of leaves;
4) Erratic rainfall in Kenya, with drought occurring twice as frequently;
5) Higher temperatures in China contributing to increased pest populations.
NASA has noted that the effects of La Nina (the counterpart to El Nino that causes some cooling effects) will probably muddle the data for the rest of the year, bringing the year-long average close to the record setting temperatures of 2005. If 2010 were not a year affected by La Nina, NASA scientists believe that it would undoubtedly be the hottest year on their records. But even with the cooling effects of La Nina, 2010 will at least parallel the temperature anomaly of 2005.
NASA scientists suspect that continued global warming is to blame for this year's incredible heat - they don't believe it to be a chance occurrence. Additionally, NASA warns that "global warming has an effect on the probability and intensity of extreme [weather] events," such as hurricanes, tidal waves, and droughts.
Although the peak temperature anomalies affected Eurasia, the Eastern United states (including Michigan, Arbor Teas' home state) was also unusually warm - and we've definitely noticed! As disturbed by this troubling trend as ever, we're doing our part at Arbor Teas to combat global warming: we continue to carbon offset our entire operation with the help of CarbonFund.org, while also participating in DTE Energy's GreenCurrents program to promote the generation of energy from renewable resources. Read more about our dedication to mitigating global climate change and promoting the health of the environment.