I’m not going to debate the fact that the earth is undergoing a global climate change. The evidence is unrefutable. I’m not interested in laying the blame at anyone’s door. It’s really too late for that.
So provided global climate change is a given, what does this mean for the residents of this planet?
Believe it or not, many scientists predict an ice age. Our weather here in Mexico in March 2016 seems to support that theory.
Other scientists suggest changes that are just as catastrophic and that will continue beyond this century.
—Changes in precipitation affecting the growing seasons. (See Also Extreme March Weather Pattern Yields Snow in Mexico, Historic Flooding in South and Record Northeast Heat)
–Hurricanes and other storms increasing in intensity. (See Also Ice melt, sea level rise and superstorms: the threat of irreparable harm)
— Rise in sea level causing coastal flooding. (See Also No planet for optimists: coastal flooding may come sooner and bigger than we think)
According to some, global warming will have benefits for countries like Greenland, so you might want to pack your bags and head out.
However, I’d like to present La Yacata as an alternative to Greenland in the event of global climate change. After all, if those experts that predict an ice age are correct, Greenland is definitely not the place to be.
What do scientists suggest are the best characteristics of a good place to live in the event of global climate change?
Not on the coast. As the sea level rises, coastal areas will be underwater. I expect that holds true for some islands too. Fortunately, La Yacata is smack dab in the middle of Mexico, far, far away from the coastline.
Not in the forest. Drought from the change in precipitation will cause much of the forest to dry out. Dry areas with dry trees have a good chance of wildfire. Wildfire is not good for any crops you might have planted, animals you might have or houses you might have built. La Yacata is definitely not in a forested area.
Not in the mountains or the valleys. Superstorms and rapidly melting snows will cause mudslides. Drought will cause landslides. Being in the mountains during one of these events might result in your being found in the valley the next morning. Being at the base of the mountain during one of these events might result in your being buried the next morning. Technically, La Yacata is in the valley but situated far enough away from those rocky cliffs that the danger is minimal.
Not in the desert. Changes in precipitation will make desert regions drier. Although by the same token, some areas that previously had low rainfall might just get a lot more. La Yacata isn’t at the top of the scale in this category because it tends to be very hot and very dry most of the year, but a dramatic climate change might just remedy that.
Not in urban sprawl. In urban areas, there are just too many people and too few resources. Quite a bit of usable dirt is under cement. Rooftop gardens are good, but not as prevalent as they could be. With global climate shifts changing the agricultural season, having access to cultivated organic food could be the difference between life and death. La Yacata is definitely not urban and there are plenty of nooks and crannies where container gardens can be grown. (See Container Gardening)
Not in an area prone to hurricanes, blizzards or tornados. With the increasing intensity of storms, areas that already have a history of hurricanes, blizzards, or tornados can expect to experience even more. Being so far inland, La Yacata is not likely to suffer much from the effects of a hurricane. It’s southern central area also precludes the likelihood of a blizzard, but in the event of one, the Flores family is prepared! Mexico, in general, does have tornados, an average of 10 per year, however, Guanajuato is not in the top states where a tornado is likely to form. If you are interested–the top four states where a tornado is likely to occur are Mexico State, Veracruz, Tlaxcala, and Chiapas. The most we ever get in La Yacata is remolinos (air swirls) that my husband swears will dissipate if you whistle loud enough. As long as he can pucker up, I expect we are safe enough here.
Not in a society dependent on Mono-crop Agriculture or Fossil Fuels. While that statement seems to include pretty much of the known world, it’s important to remember that there are still pockets of societies that live in harmony with nature. Those societies will be the go-to guys in the event of catastrophic climate change. Third world countries will probably fair better than quite a number of first world civilizations just because the average person still remembers how to do things for him or herself. (See Also How Climate change affects world society and The impacts on society due to climate change)
By the same token, La Yacata meets several of the qualifications of places you should consider in the event of global climate change.
Experts suggest a place that is:
Self-sufficient. Survival is more likely in a self-sufficient agriculturally based community where livestock feed is grown, topsoil maintained, and crop diversity is encouraged. So the Amish might be a good community to join. Or La Yacata. (See Let’s talk about food)
High elevation. Living at a higher elevation would reduce both the effects of drought and flooding. La Yacata is 1848 m (6063 ft) above sea level. Not as high as Los Amoles, but less chance of snow.
Off-grid. Flooding, superstorms, hurricanes, tornados, blizzards and other weather phenomena will affect public services, especially electricity. I remember when Hurrican Isabel hit the area where we were living in Virginia. We were without electricity for nearly a month. In La Yacata, we have no public utilities, so in the event of a power outage, we’d be just fine. (See There is still no Electricity)
Diverse and Resilient environment. Being in an environment that can withstand the elements will be essential in the event of global climate change. I can honestly say that La Yacata does just that. Every year, someone lights a fire in La Yacata and the mesquite and cactus have been able to recover each time. In fact, quite a bit of the vegetation comes back stronger. (See Also Humans survived the last ice age by sheltering in a Garden of Eden)
Ample water supply. With changes in precipitation, water sources might dry up. La Yacata is not the best place to be for this category. We have a hole that poses as a pozo (well) but no way to access the water. (See Water Woes) On the other hand, the communities just up the road from us have their own water source from underground springs. We do collect rainwater and are very conscious of our water use, though, so just maybe it will be ok.
Ample food sources. Crop failure will be rampant. Most agricultural these days is limited rather than diverse. Mexico has such a wide range of corn that grows in such diverse areas that odds are, some certainly will survive climate change. Unfortunately, Monsanto has been trying to take over down here and it’s hard to say how long Mexico has before their maize heritage is destroyed as well. Here in La Yacata, we are able to grow our own organic foodstuff AND have a plethora of foraged foods available. (See Let’s Talk about Food in La Yacata)
So, as you can see, La Yacata definitely meets some of the requirements for a place to be in the event of global climate change. Even the movie The Day After Tomorrow recommends heading to Mexico!