Yes, Indianapolis Star, Climate Change Is Delivering More Water to Indiana

The Indianapolis Star published a misleading article this week titled, “‘Will we have water when we need it?’: How Indiana utilities are preparing for climate change”. While the article claims climate change is threatening Indiana’s water supplies, objective data show Indiana is benefiting from increasing precipitation and more water availability as the Earth modestly warms.

The Star article claims, “Just 150 miles from one of the largest sources of fresh water in the world, utility planners are worried about finding enough water to supply a growing Indianapolis because of climate change.”

Also, according to the Star, “summer drought risk is growing” and “summer rainfall will decrease by about 10% in August and September by 2080….”

However, objective data reported by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) show exactly the opposite.

As shown in the NOAA chart below, annual precipitation in Indiana has increased substantially during the past century as the Earth has modestly warmed.

Also, as shown in the two NOAA charts below, Indiana summer precipitation has increased substantially during the past century as the Earth has modestly warmed.



Climate activists often try to deny such beneficial precipitation facts by claiming hotter summer days evaporate more moisture and cause dryer conditions and more water shortages even with more precipitation. The two NOAA charts below, however, show no increasing trend in Indiana summer temperatures and no increase in the frequency of very hot days.

Presented with these reassuring facts, one may ask: If the climate is modestly warming, yet there is no increase in hot summer days, how and when is the warming taking place? As shown in the NOAA chart below, the primary impact of warming is to reduce the frequency and severity of very cold winter nights. That would seem to be a benefit of climate change rather than a harm.

Ultimately, the Indianapolis Star is peddling alarmist myths. It is objectively false that climate change causes more drought and water shortages in Indiana. Just the opposite, Indiana temperatures and precipitation are becoming less severe and more beneficial as the climate modestly warms.

James Taylor
James Taylor
James Taylor is the President of the Heartland Institute. Taylor is also director of Heartland's Arthur B. Robinson Center for Climate and Environmental Policy. Taylor is the former managing editor (2001-2014) of Environment & Climate News, a national monthly publication devoted to sound science and free-market environmentalism.

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