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We'll be able to sit around a table and give thanks but the future of Thanksgiving on Climate Change will look very different.  Mother Jones gives us a preview of what Thanksgiving will be like with Climate Change on steroids.
     sad pumpkin?

What will happen with our Turkey?.

The "turkey belt" of the United States is in the South, where states like Virginia, North Carolina, and Arkansas contribute the bulk of our national annual haul of over a quarter of a billion birds. But if you're worried about keeping turkey on your Thanksgiving table into the future, you might turn your attention to the Midwest. After this summer's record-breaking heat and drought in the Corn Belt, the grain supplies that plump the birds up for market dwindled, prices spiked, and as of fall turkeys are the most expensive per pound they've been in 10 years.
You could always go out and kill your own, right?  But what about the potatoes for your mashed potatoes?   They'll still be around right?
No halfway decent Thanksgiving plate is complete without a dollop of mashed potatoes and gravy. Unfortunately, rising temperatures are endangering the future of that creamy dish. Elevated spring temperatures in Idaho could produce an 18 percent drop in spud yields and an annual $141 million economic loss to the state, according to the American Security Project. Additionally, volatile rainfall will also create irrigation problems. Scientists also fear that the destructive potato tuber moth, which now frequents farms in Africa and New Zealand, could increase infestation in its usual hotspots and expand its range in North America, South America, and Europe.
Not to worry as scientists and agriculturalists have found a great starchy substitute to grow in the warming areas previously used for potatoes.  They believe that bananas would work as a great alternative.  Mashed bananas and gravy...yummy!

Well at least we can count on Cranberries, true?

Over in Wisconsin—where growers typically produce more cranberries than any other state—the cranberry is actually the official state fruit. Like most woody perennials, cranberry plants go dormant for part of the year, and Wisconsin's typically bone-chilling winters are great for this important stage. Tod Planer, a coordinator with the Wisconsin State Cranberry Growers Association, says that during recent mild winters, berries have failed to freeze, forcing farmers to cover their crops in fresh water every few days to make sure oxygen reaches the plants. One Wisconsin farmer told Grow magazine that he saw his first cranberry blossom in mid-May this year, the earliest he's ever witnessed. Mild weather in March spurred his plants into production, but then the cold returned and damaged the early vines, leaving the farmer to predict a major loss.
So we will have to adapt not just to the loss of Thanksgiving but to the loss of comfort and safety we cherish.  Rather then accept the loss I say we work to mitigate the worst effects of Climate Change.  Sure we'll have to make some changes but on our own terms and not at the dictate of Mother Nature.

Originally posted to beach babe in fl on Wed Nov 21, 2012 at 05:53 AM PST.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Happy Thanksgiving to All! n/t (7+ / 0-)

    Macca's Meatless Monday

    by VL Baker on Wed Nov 21, 2012 at 06:56:08 AM PST

  •  Hmm, I didn't realize turkeys were that (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    beach babe in fl, VClib

    expensive this year.

    Heck, at my neighborhood supermarket, if you buy $20 of other stuff, they're just $0.59 a pound.  At the time it seemed quite reasonable to me.

  •  Potatoes grow here (3+ / 0-)

    just fine, and just because there's "north" in North Carolina's name, it ain't yankee-land. As for turkeys, there are more than anybody can count every year. Kind of tough and rangy, but could be stewed for T-giving okay.

    Cranberries are too tart for my family, so I always make the sauce mixed with blackberries and blueberries and call it "Crackberry Sauce." Blackberries, raspberries, wineberries and blueberries are still thick here in the mountains, even though they did change our climate zone this year to the next warmer one.

    I figure people will adjust, even when transporting fruit and veggies halfway around the world isn't normally done (what a total waste of energy!). Pumpkins, winter squash, Jerusalem artichokes that grow everywhere wild... there's a dozen good greens growing wild if the kale crop doesn't make it.

    But the apple trees have blight, now that we're warmer I'm planning to replace with peaches and figs...

    •  Yeah, if they can have Xmas in Australia (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      beach babe in fl, Joieau

      and New Zealand, and Thanksgiving in October in Canada, I suspect that we'll be able to tough it out somehow here in the USA.

      Having said that, despite this diary perhaps being a tad melodramatic - if it reaches someone who otherwise doesn't take this issue seriously, then it's probably worth it . .. .

      •  that's the purpose. And loss of Thanksgiving will (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Roadbed Guy, Joieau

        be the least of our problems.

        Macca's Meatless Monday

        by VL Baker on Wed Nov 21, 2012 at 08:38:42 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  This is definitely a tough nut to crack (0+ / 0-)

          'cuz on one hand reaching the willfully ignorant is massively difficult and a level of hyperbole and rhetorical devices can be justified from that perspective.

          OTOH, at some point others might say "geez, that person is just a tad over-the-top and a bit crazy" (for you, in the best of ways, of course!!) and stop listening for that reason . . ..

        •  Of course it will. (0+ / 0-)

          Just a carry-over of a hunger project I worked on years ago. A world-wide feast day harmongous pot-luck called the Whole World Family Supper. We have attended or hosted pot-luck Thanksgivings ever since, cooking one turkey today the other tomorrow, we're expecting about 40 folks for dinner and passing through over the long weekend for leftovers and disc golf.

          Nobody's doing 'Black Friday'.

          Perhaps to offer reassurance that out here where food is grown or comes wild, we're on it. And will learn to adjust, even relocate if required. The government's always five years behind what needs to be done with agriculture, and the big Agribiz gigacorps are definitely an issue. They've monocropped and genetically modified their way into real danger when the microculture changes. People may have to learn to like nutritional foods and lose the calorie-packed nutritionally vacant junk. Like Twinkies, for instance.

          Change is occurring underneath corporate and governmental control, it will eventually translate because it must. If I lived on the beach (where I lived before moving to the high country), I wouldn't wait to drown as the water rises. We're not talking a tidal wave here, we're talking inches a decade. People will move uphill when they have to. More severe storms will wreak seasonal havoc. We'll live or die through those too.

          I love the effort to change energy consumption patterns and sources from the bottom-up too. Eventually corporate culture notices and adjusts over time. Then even government will notice and work with what's real (but five or ten years after the fact). Change for individuals can happen faster by a couple of orders of magnitude in the time it takes TPTB [The Powers That Be] to accomplish anything new. It has always been thus.

  •  or eat different foods, like my family has and (0+ / 0-)

    does every year.

    with my family I haven't had a "traditional" thanksgiving since I was ten. with the other families Thanksgivings I have to attend, I guess it'd be a problem for them since they're stuck on "tradition", but me? meh. tradition is boring, lame, mind numbing, and stupid.

    (also, your previous diaries have hinted there won't be any food period, so this diary seems a bit silly.)

    pseudoscience can kill

    by terrypinder on Wed Nov 21, 2012 at 09:07:54 AM PST

    •  my previous diaries have stated that in order (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      John Crapper

      to mitigate the worst effects of CC we must reform agriculture which includes a move to vegetarianism.  Just click the last link in my diary above and click my username for all my diaries over 300 on that subject alone.

      Macca's Meatless Monday

      by VL Baker on Wed Nov 21, 2012 at 09:11:17 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  beach babe - just saw a story on PBS (0+ / 0-)

        a week or so ago about the dramatic rise in meat consumption in China. As we see a growing middle class in China, India, Brazil, and other countries, a desire for more meat in their diet has historically followed higher incomes. I do think that we can encourage Americans to eat less meat, but I don't think we are going to convert tens of millions to vegetarians.

        "let's talk about that"

        by VClib on Wed Nov 21, 2012 at 11:06:11 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  China is buying grain from the US for livestock (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          VClib

          feed.  And of course US production of grain due to drought and  climate change effects has been hit hard and we had to buy some grain from Brazil to cover our losses. And Brazil is cutting down the Amazon for cattle ranching and for feed crops.    So I think you can see where this leads to an unsustainable cycle that will not support livestock production in future.  The sooner we transition away from livestock the sooner we can begin to transition to the sustainable future we must have if we are to avoid the worst effects of climate change.   We may be too late already because people seem unable to make the necessary changes.    

          Macca's Meatless Monday

          by VL Baker on Wed Nov 21, 2012 at 11:22:28 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  Talking like we have no reason to change our ways (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    beach babe in fl

    just a need to adapt to the change is a dangerous mindset to even be flip about.  That being said I want everyone to have a very happy Thanksgiving.  Enjoy the bounty that we have in this country and give thanks that climate change is beginning to take a more central role in people's everyday thinking.  

    If we really want to straighten out all this crap we really need to think about shit - Holy Shit.

    by John Crapper on Wed Nov 21, 2012 at 09:20:49 AM PST

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