Michigan and the Great Lakes

Michigan’s climate is very unpredictable. One day it could be 30 degrees and snowing and the next day it could be 50 degrees and sunny. You never know what to expect when living in Michigan. The winters can get freezing cold while in the summer there can be heat waves. Michigan experience all four of the seasons, winter, summer, spring, and fall, and we see them all. Michigan’s climate is also good for vegetation. With the amount of precipitation, Michigan is able to grow things like cherries, berries, and black beans.

There are eight states that border the five Great Lakes. They are Minnesota, Wisconsin, Indiana, Illinois, Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York, and of course Michigan. The Great Lakes are Lake Superior, Lake Michigan, Lake Ontario, Lake Huron, and Lake Erie. According to an article that I read, the Great Lakes a have a big influence on the climate. Acting as a giant heat sink, the lakes moderate the temperatures of the surrounding land, cooling the summers and warming the winters. As a result, there will be a milder climate in in parts of the basin compared to other locations with similar latitude. Also, acting as a giant humidifier, the lakes increase the moisture content of the air throughout the year. In the winter, the moisture becomes snow as it reaches the ground sometimes creating a heavy snowfall, known as snow belts, on the downwind shores of lakes.

The Great Lakes is the single largest source of fresh water in the world. It is used for drinking, hydroelectric power, commercial shipping, and recreation. The Great Lakes is also big on plants and wildlife. The Great Lakes undergo problems such as urban sprawl, air and water pollution, and habitat fragmentation which are already stressing the ecosystems of the Great Lakes region. Global climate change looms as an additional threat to the region’s economy, population, and wildlife by changing climate patterns and compounding the negative effects of current environmental problems.

Kalaundra Hall

http://www.great-lakes.net/envt/refs/weather.html

http://www.climatehotmap.org/impacts/greatlakes.html

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