At our current rate of climate change, Davenport, Iowa's weather will be like Cape Girardeau, Missouri's in just 60 years.
Dr. Matt Fitzpatrick, a climate scientist at the University of Maryland, studied the rate of warming to determine which city our future weather/climate will be like. Takeaways for the Midwest:
- Grand Forks, North Dakota becomes Cedar Rapids, Iowa
- Minneapolis becomes Kansas City
- St. Louis becomes Dallas
- Tulsa becomes Houston
- Louisville becomes Shreveport, Louisiana
- Green Bay becomes Dayton, Ohio
- Indianapolis becomes Jonesboro, Arkansas
Dr. Fitzpatrick told ScienceAlert.com, "We can use this technique to translate a future forecast into something we can better conceptualize and link to our own experiences. It's my hope that people have that 'wow' moment, and it sinks in for the first time the scale of the changes we're expecting in a single generation."
It's also worth mentioning that this change in location is based off of the warming that is already occurring. If it gets worse, the distance to the south increases. Keep in mind, for most places in the U.S. Midwest, this puts in a position to see hotter and wetter conditions.
A reminder that weather is the atmospheric conditions over a short period of time while climate is weather over a long period of time. And yes, we can get more serious cold outbreaks in a warming climate. A case worth studying: the repeated storm activity and cold surges in the Central U.S. in January and February.
-Meteorologist Eric Sorensen