Wabash Watershed Essay

2101 words - 9 pages

Wabash Watershed

Global warming affects all of us. This is not just a "them" thing, or a "they" thing. Everyone on the planet needs to be aware of the consequences of their actions in contributing to global warming or as most people know it, The Green House Effect. Mankind has been contributing to this since the beginning of time in one way or another.
Granted, we are doing more damage now than we did 100 years ago, but nonetheless, damage has been done. The proof is the average global temperature increasing expeditiously. "Data gathered from surface weather stations, ships, buoys, balloons, satellites, ice cores, and other paleoclimatological sources indicate that the climate of Earth ...view middle of the document...

The average annual maximum temperature in the Wabash valley from 1961-1982 had an average of 59.58° until 1982 when we see that the temperature value starts to increase by almost 5° with the average annual temperature for the 30 year span to end at 64.88°. To partially explain this, we have to remember that some of the coldest and most severe winter in US history was January 1977. Temperatures between 1980 and 1990 may represent the first indications of human-induced "global warming".
The average annual minimum temperature in the Wabash Valley in between the years of 1962 and 1963 witnessed the lowest annual minimum temperature at 39°, while in between the years of 1972 and 1990 had the highest annual minimum temperature at 44°. However, the general trend of the 10-year running mean is upward. The average annual minimum temperature for the 30 year span ends up at 44.01°. This is in part due to the increased rate of evaporation due in part to the Global warming theory.
The average annual temperature in the Wabash valley over the 30 year span is roughly 50.55°. Although, from 1960 to 1976, the temperatures remained relatively constant, with an upward spiral from 1979 to 1990. This data closely resembles the maximum data. The data from 1979 and onward indicates that we were entering a period of global warming. The average daily temperature however indicates that the intervals between minimum and maximum are closing in on each other.
The average annual precipitation in the Wabash Valley shows a relatively consistent flow from 1960 until 1976 where the amount of precipitation sharply declines. The amount of precipitation does make a rebound in 1977 and then a fluctuating flow until 1989 where we notice almost a 10 inch increase. One of the reasons for this is the evaporation rate. "Water vapor has a significant effect on weather and climate in that it is the source of all clouds and precipitation; water vapor also plays important roles in a number of heating and cooling processes in the atmosphere". (Hess, 2011, p.273)
The average annual days of light precipitation in Wabash Valley shows a slight increase in the overall trend represented by the 10-year running mean. As compared to the beginning, during the end of the period there is a significant increase from 168 to 184, meaning an increase of almost 10%. This trend indicates that with increasing temperatures and evaporation, more drought-prone conditions in the 1980's due to decreased levels of moderate precipitation.
The average annual days of heavy precipitation in the Wabash Valley shows in the 10-year mean that the amount of precipitation has a general decrease. However, the total sum from 1960 to 1990 is an increase. The years with the most precipitation are from 1966-1969, then dropping significantly in 1970 and rebounding in 1973 with 5 inches of rainfall. In 1983 and 1986 the rainfall was at 5 inches and then dropped dramatically for the latter half of 1986 to 1987 and...

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