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Climate change quicker than expected on Korean Peninsula

Korea Times

Average temperatures in Korea are climbing faster than the global average, gradually making that country warm enough so the streets in Seoul could be lined with tangerine trees by 2040.

According to the Korea Climate Change Assessment Report 2010 released by the National Institute of Environmental Research (NIER) Monday, tangerines, a subtropical fruit had only been cultivated in Jeju Island in the past, but the cultivation is shifting northward.

In 2040, the area for growing tangerines would be some 36 times greater than that of now,” a NIER official said. The cultivation areas for kiwis and figs will also increase as they move northward.

The report said Korea is heating up faster than other countries. The average temperature of the globe in 2100 has been estimated to be some 1.4 to 5.8 degrees Celsius higher than that of 1990. The annual average temperature of Korea was 13.5 degrees Celsius from 1991 to 2000, a 1.5 degree jump from a 12 degrees Celsius average from 1912 to 1990. The rise is much higher than the change in global temperature of 0.6 degree.

The rise in temperatures will bring changes in various industries in addition to agriculture. Rising water temperatures will result in a rise of the sea levels, acidification of seawater, coastal erosion and changes in sea life population. Respiratory ailments will increase due to air pollution and the number of food poisoning cases will also rise.

Korea is going to be influenced by El Nino’s warm pool, resulting in extremely cold winter and local downpours. The warm pool refers to abnormally high water temperature in the tropical Central Pacific, a variation of El Nino in the East Pacific.

As climate change threatens the country, the government has come up with measures to cope with this, it said Monday.

The countermeasures are to minimize the casualties and property damage caused by climate change from heat waves, floods, an influx of harmful insects and outbreaks of contagious diseases.

Also included is how to use the rise in temperatures as opportunities for job creation and new businesses by cultivating new subtropical plants or offering eco-friendly tourism.

El contenido de las noticias que se presentan en esta sección es responsabilidad directa de las agencias emisoras de noticias y no necesariamente reflejan la posición del Gobierno de México en este u otros temas relacionados.


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