Thanks to Climate Change, Pittsburgh Is Among Most Greening Regions

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette published an article Friday claiming climate change is making the Pittsburgh region the fifth most challenging large city for people with allergies. What the Post-Gazette swept under the rug, however, is more lush, abundant forests and plant life are the source of more regional pollen. The unfortunate side-effect that some people are sensitive to pollen does not mean that it would be better if plants had a hard time living. Thriving plant life is a net benefit of global warming, not a detriment or a crisis.

The Post-Gazette article is titled, “Thanks to climate change, Pittsburgh is among the worst regions for allergy sufferers, study says.” Citing a report published by the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, the Post-Gazette asserts, “According to the report, ‘both spring and fall pollen has increasingly gotten worse every year with longer, warmer growing seasons caused by climate change. These seasons produce stronger pollen at higher quantities.’”

The “longer, warmer growing seasons caused by climate change,” along with more atmospheric carbon dioxide, are spurring a tremendous greening of the Earth, according to NASA satellite measurements. According to NASA, these factors have led to a 10 percent increase in global plant life during the past 20 years. The Sahara Desert and other desert regions are shrinking and being filled with life. Areas with existing plant life are becoming more lush with vegetation. These are creating healthier ecosystems supporting more animal life, as well.

Rather than celebrating the beneficial effects of climate change on plant and animal life throughout the world, climate alarmists and their media allies search for any small, negative side-effects and then portray the good news as bad news.

According to the Post-Gazette, “The link between longer, warmer growing seasons and plant pollen production is strengthened by a study published in the February 2021 Proceedings of the National Academy of Science online journal that found pollen concentrations had increased by 20% and the changing climate is the primary cause.”

Yes, more abundant plant life and an Earth that is more hospitable to life will have a side effect of more pollen. Overall, however, the increase in plant life that produces the pollen is a net benefit, not a crisis.

Even for Pittsburgh.

Especially for Pittsburgh.

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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