Earlier this week — the start of March — it was above 70 degrees in New York City. After dark, still too hot to wear a coat, I walked from Union Square downtown feeling the humid air on my bare arms, craving an iced drink.
The humans I encountered were feeling Spring, playing in Washington Square Park, strolling in sleeveless shirts, eating gelato en masse.
Yet, it is too early for Spring in this region.
In a nearby rural area, irises are blooming, daffodils poking through the soil. Wood frogs have mated more than 3 weeks early: tapioca-like masses of eggs in two ponds, the evidence they left behind. At week’s end the strong winds brought plummeting temperatures. Today it is barely 30 degrees, and tonight will yield about 13 degrees.
Record highs, record lows. Unseasonable.
What does seasonable mean in the face of climate change? How will the natural world respond? Will migrating birds find that insect blooms essential to their survival have passed them by? That the plants they count on for nectar or seed were unseasonably early — gone already?
This week in the U.S. our federal regulatory agencies under new regime halted monitoring climate change indicators via satellite, stopped tracking methane output from fracking wells, greenlit dumping unlimited fracking fluids into the already chemical-laden Gulf of Mexico and dumping coal ash in rivers, further decimated Clean Air regulations, put their heads in the sand (or in a posterior bodily cavity) because what you can’t see, you can’t track.
So in one year, two years, how much more disruption will we see in natural cycles? What level of storms will blow through? What pollinators will survive? How many more people will die from air pollution? Will the ocean’s food chain collapse from acidity and disrupted currents?
This is why I write. I speak truth through fiction, and offer a way forward to heal the world.
My novel, The Working, offers one way to turn the tide and assure a sustainable, regenerating world. I look forward to putting it in your hands.
How will you change the world?