The Impact of Climate Change on New Jersey and The World
Steve Adubato is joined by David A. Robinson, Ph.D., Distinguished Professor at Rutgers University and New Jersey State Climatologist, to discuss the science behind climate change, examples of how climate change is affecting New Jersey and the world, and steps everyone can take to help preserve our planet.
"Welcome to Think Tank. I'm Steve Adubato. Everything you wanted or needed to know, whether you know it or not, about climate change you're about to find out. We have Doctor David Robinson, who is a distinguished professor at my alma mater, and a lot of others, Rutgers University, New Jersey, State Climatologist. What does that mean to be the state's climatologist? Well, it's an appointed position I've had for 28 years, and we're kind of the go-to office on all things weather and climate in the state. People have questions. We have a weather network of 65 stations in real time around the state. But we can look at data from a hundred years ago. We help people make decisions. And so much is related to the weather and climate that it covers just about anything you can think of around the state. Yeah. And by the way, if you watch NJTV news, David's on a lot trying to break things down and make sense of things. So we're going to do that right now. If you had to define, quote-unquote "define" climate change in 30 seconds or less, could you do it? Sure. Go. Elevator speeches. It's the impact of humans at this point in time on our environment. We're putting another blanket on the bed, if you will, and keeping the heat in close to the planet for longer than naturally has occurred. And as such, we're seeing changes in temperature, precipitation, sea level... a variety of environmental indicators are telling us that the planet is running a bit of a fever. So for some folks who say, "You know, all right. I agree that it exists. But no big deal. Some of you folks in the media make too big of a deal about this. We're overreacting to it. Just chill and relax." You say? It is a big deal. It may not be a big deal on a day-to-day basis as we see it, unless a storm like Sandy comes along that was given a little extra oomph from... What does Sandy have to do with climate change? Sea surface temperatures were above normal, and models have suggested that the storm wouldn't have been as strong if sea surface temperatures off our coast had been average in that late October of 2012. Keep going. Why does it matter? It matters because we're... we live on the edge, if you will. We need to have fresh water to drink. We need to have food to eat. And a state like us, a coastal state, we need that coastal area for our own cultural identity, tourism, and beyond. So it touches all aspects of our life. Is the Jersey..."