Tuesday, March 4, 2014

The Bright Side of a Miserably Cold Winter

Not only has it contributed a new phrase, "polar vortex," to our conventional lexicon, the frigid winter of 2013/14 has "decimated" populations of some of North America's most troubling invasive species, including the gypsy moth and the emerald ash borer beetle. Gwynn Guilford has the story at Quartz, here. Unfortunately, the news isn't all good. According to the author, "[t]he same extreme weather that may be causing polar vortexes is also making winters warmer on average—and that’s letting these insects live further and further north, making increasing swaths of the US hospitable to invasive species, which cause $143 billion in economic losses in the US each year."

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