Yosemite a climate laboratory

YOSEMITE NATIONAL PARK — Scientists predict that climate change will mean more rainfall and less snow in Yosemite in the next 50 years. If that happens, they say, one of the nation's premier outdoor destinations could experience problems — including severe floods in winter and spring, plus dry wells in the summer.

Farmers in the San Joaquin Valley also could be hurt because reservoirs might not be able to handle large winter runoffs, and water needed for irrigation or groundwater recharge would wind up in the Pacific Ocean.

One of the keys to understanding the future is locked in the traces of minerals and salts contained in water flowing through Yosemite Valley today.

So researchers from the University of California at Merced are collecting data to build an information base with which to compare future research on climate change.

Read the complete story at