Could it be because "climate change" - what people in the old days used to call "the weather" - is a completely concocted threat to the environment?
Nah! There must be a more sophisticated explanation.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture chief calls climate change "one of the greatest threats facing our planet," but little attention is being paid to it in Tennessee's farming world.On the other hand, it's entirely possible that the ecosystem will continue to function pretty much like normal. So, you know...
More rain is falling in autumn in the Southeast than a century ago. Droughts have increased in spring and summer, and the temperature has made a slight move upward, particularly since 1970.
It's projected to continue to rise, according to the U.S. Global Change Research Program. Increasingly extreme weather is likely, such as heavier downpours and more intense droughts in some areas.
Yet change in Tennessee could be difficult to tabulate, according to Joanne Logan, an associate professor of biosystems engineering and soil engineering at the University of Tennessee.
"In Tennessee, everything is pretty subtle," she said, adding that research has not been plentiful when it comes to agriculture and climate change here.
If small changes are occurring under the radar, a trigger point could be reached suddenly where ecosystems as a whole could fail, unable to make changes quickly enough to keep up, she said.