Climate change and wildlife in the southern United States: potential effects and management optionsThis article is part of a larger document. View the larger document here.
In the southeastern United States, climate models project a temperature increase of 2-10°C by 2100 (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change 2007). Climate change is already evident. Since the 1970s, average temperature has risen by about 1°C, with the greatest seasonal temperature increase during winter. Average precipitation during autumn has increased by 30% since 1901, but summer precipitation has decreased (U.S. Global Change Research Program 2012). Correspondingly, drought has affected a larger portion of the Southeast over the past three decades. The patterns and severity of storms are also changing, with more heavy downpours in many areas and the power of Atlantic hurricanes increasing (U.S. Global Change Research Program 2012).
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