Changes will affect regional water supplies
Long-term data from a monitoring station high in the Colorado Rockies is showing remarkable signs of climate change, according to new findings published a special issue of the journal Plant Ecology and Diversity.
The research, conducted west of Boulder, along Niwot Ridge and Green Lakes Valley, shows that the only glacier in the area has been thinning by about three feet per year during the past 15 years.
And careful surveys of alpine vegetation shows that, at one location, the plant community has changed dramatically, with a significant increase in alpine shrubs above treeline in recent decades, according to said ecologist Mark Williams, of the University of Colorado Boulder Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research.
“Places that once harbored magnificent wildflowers are being replaced by shrubs, particularly willows,” Williams said in a press release from the National Science foundation, which helped fund the new study. Continue reading
Filed under: climate and weather, climate change, Colorado, Environment, global warming | Tagged: alpine tundra, Arikaree Glacier, Boulder, climate change, Colorado, Colorado water, global warming, Niwot Ridge, Rocky Mountains | Leave a comment »