J. Drake Hamilton (audio #3)
"Our modern society depends so heavily on water. We need it to cool the processes that produce most of our electricity, whether its nuclear power or coal-fired power all use lots of cooling water. We rely increasingly on groundwater for our drinking water, for our agriculture, for industrial processes. So we should be concerned if the hydrologic cycle is going to be so greatly impacted about whether we'll have the water that we need where we need it. And this will have big economic implications. It also will have natural resource implications. We already see right now-I work in downtown St. Paul near the Mississippi River and on some of the coldest days this winter when it was below zero for a long period of time, you could look out on the stretch of river, and guess what? It's not frozen over, whereas other stretches of the river are frozen over and you can look right upstream a couple hundred yards and there's a big coal-fired power plant that's burning coal to produce our electricity to keep us comfortable during these cold winter days. But the other unintended consequence is it's artificially keeping that ice off the river so it's keeping the river open in that stretch with all the ecological impacts of that as well."