Waiting for the New President: Doctoring data on global warming

ArborDay.org map showing changes in hardiness zones between 1990 and 2006

ArborDay.org map showing changes in hardiness zones between 1990 and 2006, a map climate change denialists wish did not exist.

We need a new category of urban myth or urban legend.  Jan Brunvand’s inventions and development of the study of folk stories that people claim to be true long enough that they become legends, needs to be updated to include internet stupidity that just won’t die.  Especially, we need a good, two-word label for politically-motivated propaganda that should go away, but won’t.

Perhaps I digress.

One might be filled with hope at the prospect of the administration of President Obama. Science issues that have been ignored for too long may once again rise to due consideration.  Friends in health care worry that it will take four or eight terms of diligent work to undo the damage done to medical science by neglect of spending and budgeting during the last eight years.

I take a little hope in this:  Maybe we can get an update of the planting zones maps relied on by farmers, horticulturists, and backyard gardeners.

New maps were delayed through the Bush administration.  The last serious update, officially, was 1990.  Perhaps much has changed in climate in the last generation, and perhaps that is why the new maps were delayed, though they had been painstakingly prepared by the American Horticulture Society.


Plants cannot be fooled by newspaper reports.  Plants are not partisan in political issues. Plants both respond to and clearly demonstrate climate change.  To those who wished to suppress or deny climate change, suppressing the hardiness zone maps may have seemed like a good way to win a political debate.

Robust discussion based on the facts, a casualty of the past eight years, ready to be resurrected.


3 Responses to Waiting for the New President: Doctoring data on global warming

  1. […] changing colors of the trees. Such a change would be consistent with other long-term observations, such as those by the Department of Agriculture and Arbor Day Foundation, that the plant zones across… (and some […]


  2. jd2718 says:

    Those red and plain stripes across most of the center and east, they really are just artifacts of having definite divides between zones, and probably represent a fairly consistent shift, perhaps a bit more from Missouri towards Michigan and Minnesota.

    The swirls in the west represent something else. As does the cooling in Nevada, Arizona, and inland California.

    Way cool map.



  3. mpb says:

    Where is… Bethel hardiness (2007) – http://ykalaska.wordpress.com/2007/02/28/where-is-bethel-hardiness/

    I only had the Alaska 1990 Hardiness map displayed here but also the Arbor Day Alaska maps with shifts.

    The Shrubs in the White House had also delayed acknowledging other dramatic changes. Don’t forget they banned the Prudhoe oilfields caribou maps. If the old files haven’t been destroyed, maybe the new MultiCultural House can restore the scientific data and publish the updated sets.


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