BEMIDJI -- Constant days of rain locally and across the region in the past few months are continuing a trend of 2019 being the wettest year on record in many Minnesota cities.
It's one of the weather trends cited as an impact from climate change that was included in a presentation given to Bemidjians Thursday by Minnesota Public Radio's Chief Meteorologist.
During an MPR Connects event, meteorologist Paul Huttner talked to an audience of more than 180 about the meaning behind trends residents can already see outside their windows. According to Huttner, the state is already on track to be wetter and warmer.
"There were 10 snow storms in about five weeks and that wet signal has persisted throughout the year," Huttner said. "This is the wettest year on record in many locations in Minnesota. Rochester has already beaten their annual precipitation record in September."
According to Huttner, the state is trending to be about 5 degrees warmer and 5 inches wetter on average.
Huttner discussed the importance of communicating the science of climate and weather experiences. He also discussed the impacts climate change can have on energy, insurance and communities.
"We've just gone through the five warmest years on record globally, from 2014-2018," Huttner said. "That's unprecedented, we've never had the top five warmest years in a row. In a balanced climate system, you'd think we'd have a mix of warmer and colder than average years. But the last cooler than average year was in 1976. That's how far out of balance the Earth's climate system is."
Huttner, who's been MPR's meteorologist since 2007, speaks about the subject regularly on his weekly radio show the Climate Cast. Episodes of the Climate Cast are available at MPR's website, mpr.org.
MPR operates a 46 station radio network serving nearly all of Minnesota and parts of surrounding states. Huttner is heard on regular weather chats on MPR and also writes for the MPR Updraft Blog.