TreeHugger: [Brian Merchant weighs in]My father has been a Midwestern corn farmer for many decades, and I know for a fact that warm weather there is considered good for corn growth.
Lesson 1b: Growing Degree and Applications[Collin Peterson of Minnesota] We’ve just had the biggest floods and coldest winters we’ve ever had. They’re saying to us [that climate change is] going to be a big problem because it’s going to be warmer than it usually is; my farmers are going to say that’s a good thing since they’ll be able to grow more corn.Woops. I mean, that statement is absurd even if you're a full blown climate change denier. As Yglesias points out, "Sadly, he’s not joking about this . . . farmers in any given place have worked over the years to achieve a setup that’s well-suited to the climate they face. If you drastically change the climate, that’s a big problem." It means new equipment, new irrigation considerations, new schedules, etc. It means trouble. Never mind that climate change will bring more severe storms and worse flooding--not exactly farmers' faves.
In fact, the more I think about it, Peterson's reasoning may land him in a strata all his own--beyond climate skeptic, past climate change denier, and into . . . climate change enthusiast? Watch out for this sly new brand of climate action opponent to take the world by storm soon.
The crop grows according to an "S"-shaped curve depending on temperature, with the ideal temperature for crop growth, if everything else is satisfactory such as nutrition and water availability, being somewhere around 93 FBrian Merchant, Brooklyn, New York :: TreeHugger
Brian Merchant is a freelance writer, blogger, and editor living in Brooklyn, NY. He started his writing career covering pop culture and independent music for the likes of Paste, Death + Taxes, and Citysearch.com, but his passion has turned towards environmental and social issues.