Great Lakes Indiana Climate

Great Lakes Communities and Ecosystems at RiskThe Regionspacer
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• Climate in the Region
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• Overview
• Migrating Climates
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Climate Change in Indiana
Piping Plover
Climate Projections
Human Health
Property and Infrastructure
Recreation & Tourism
Water Supply & Pollution
Climate Solutions
Resources & Links

Projected Climate Change in Indiana:
Indiana's climate is known for both cold winters that favor a variety of winter sports, as well as warm summers that appeal to thousands of vacationers each year and provide a boost for Indiana's local economies. Precipitation and climate in Indiana has also contributed to the success of Indiana's agriculture— including crops such as feed crop (corn), soybean, and tobacco production. Each of these unique features is threatened by projected changes in climate.

The latest, most reliable projections of future climate change combine 100 years of historical data for Indiana with the most up-to-date general circulation models of the Earth's climate system. In general Indiana's climate will grow considerably warmer and probably drier during this century, especially in the summer. As a result of these changes, by 2030 Indiana's summer climate is expected to feel like that of present day Missouri with winters that fell like current day southern Ohio. By 2095 summer may be like the current climate of Oklahoma, while winters may resemble Virginia.

Below is more detail on these projections. For a graphical depiction, see the Migrating Climates feature.

Projected Climate Changes in Indiana
Warmer Temperatures
By the end of the century, winter temperatures are projected to increase by 5-7oF; summer temperatures are projected to increase 8-10oF.

Precipitation Changes While annual average precipitation may not change much, Indiana may grow drier overall because rainfall cannot compensate for the drying effects of a warmer climate, especially in the summer. Seasonal precipitation in Indiana is likely to change, increasing 5-10% in the winter and decreasing 10-15% in the summer.

Extreme Events
Extreme heat will be more common, and the frequency of heavy rainstorms will increase.

Growing Season

The growing season could be 3-6 weeks longer.

Photo Credits:
Piping Plover -- National Park Service, Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore.
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