USU Professor Tracks Alaska’s Climate Change
By Associated Press
LOGAN — Dying fish, destructive fires and clouds of mosquitoes.
Utah State University professor Chris Luecke says those are among the changes he’s tracked over the decade he’s tracked climate change in Alaska.
USU’s watershed resources department travels to Alaska each year to examine lakes in the Brooks Range. The northern mountains are home to delicate ecosystems that have evolved in freezing temperatures.
Luecke says the area isn’t reacting well to rapid climate changes that are lengthening the typical 100-day summer to 120 or 130 days.
For example, Luecke says heat speeds up metabolism, so fish are getting thinner. Other aquatic life is struggling as streams dry into small ponds with insufficient oxygen.
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