You cannot and will not convince me that there is any season better than fall. It’s got the gluttony-based holidays, the coolest clothes, and the best weather. As someone whose aesthetic hovers delicately between “teen witch who shops at Forever21" and “hygge cuddle nugget," it is inarguably my time of year: Give me plaid skirts, decaying leaves, and cool, rainy days until I die.
But let me tell you for the past couple of years, New York City hasn’t been giving me in the way of sweater weather.
As I write this on a sunny October day, the temperature is clocking in at a toasty and ohsounseasonal 80 degrees Fahrenheit
Would that it was but a brief heat wave, in fact, we’ve been “enjoying “this weather for days and the forecast tells me I expect another 80 degrees afternoon this weekend. Last year, it felt like the dog days of summer until about a week before the frigid polar vertex set in, and it’s looking like 2017 won’t be much better. So I sit, escaping the summeresque heat in the overzealous AC of my building .while my personal measure of falls arrival is mostly based on when I can wear suede without dying, there’s an arguably more scientific on the stunning views of mount sides seemingly a flame. This leaf peeping is an important milestone for scientists studying seasonal shifts. Trees autumnal bouquet heralds the end of its growing season, where the plant battens down the hatches and survives off internal. Sugar reserves for the winter. It’s apparent that climate change, which is raising average global temperatures, is changing the timing of certain seasonal mile makers. But historically, climatologists have mostly on spring." It’s the most dramatic time to see changes because trees are leafing out, flowers are blooming, animals are arriving," Richard Primark says. He and his colleagues have found that increases in temperature trigger most, if not all, of these springtime happenings. When it gets warmer earlier, spring happens earlier. This year Primark says, New England hasn’t experienced the evening frost that would usually spur vibrant color changes.
There is definitely a documented pattern of the conditions that are associated with fall, such leaf color change, occurring later than, they did in previous decades, “says Theresa M Crimmins
Phenology is the study of changes that occur seasonally. In the former, satellites have documented leaf color change and leaf drop latter, people have documented fruit ripening, leaf color change, senescence, and leaf drop later as well" “ I think it’s probably not misrepresenting the literature to say that warmer temperature extending later into the fall lead to delayed leaf senescence," Crimmins says.
So what are the implications of a delayed descent into autumn, beyond the fact that I’m probably going to faint waiting for the subway one of these days? Since the changing variables are complicated, so are the potential results. But Primark has some sense of what might shifts as our falls get warmer.
The higher temperatures are, for starters, encouraging changes in when different bird and butterfly species arrive, leave, breed and die.
“Warmer weather might be encouraging for a more active breakdown of all the organic material, like dead leaves, in the soil. That means that the ground is actually giving off more carbon dioxide than before." Primark’s lab has been keeping an eye on autumn for about five years. He said in an interview that he hopes that winter will get a closer look next warmer weather during this season might also have a negative impact on trees.
“It’s very sobbing, he admits. We can see the reality of climate change and its impact on all the seasons in this region. But if you go in with open eyes, you can see things no one has seen before."