Inside Climate News discusses how Fading Winters, Hotter Summers Make the Northeast America’s Fastest Warming Region. Connecticut’s average temperature has risen 2 degrees Celsius since the late 19th century, double the average for the Lower 48 states.
As a kid growing up in Watertown, Connecticut, Daniel Esty would create his own backyard ice skating rink and flood it with a garden hose. Now, when Esty tries to create an ice rink with his own children in their backyard in nearby Cheshire, the water rarely freezes.
Only a few days in recent winters have been cold enough to produce ice adequate for skating, said Esty, a Yale University environmental law professor. Having lived in Connecticut his whole life, he has witnessed the growing impact of global warming in the Northeast.
“I think all of us who’ve been living in New England see changes that suggest that we’re in a warming cycle, and that of course, is worrisome,” said Esty, who served as commissioner of the state’s Department of Energy and Environmental Protection from 2011 to 2014.
The perilous warming trend in the Northeast continued this spring, according to the National Centers for Environmental Information’s climate report for May, which found warmer than normal temperatures for all 12 Northeastern states. Spring temperatures were 0.1 degrees Celsius above normal in Connecticut, the report said. The state’s nearly 2 degrees Celsius temperature rise since 1895 is double the average for the Lower 48 states.