“You don’t need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows,” Bob Dylan once famously sang. But it seems nothing is simple when it comes to the weather anymore. Given all the hype concerning Climate Change, it seemed like a natural subject for a landscaping magazine to tackle. After all, the only profession more directly wired to weather and climate than landscaping is farming.
But we stepped into a firestorm of controversy from the very beginning when responses to our initial reader surveys started streaming in. Everyone felt the need to write impassioned defenses of their views. Predictably, the responses were all over the map: “ARE YOU BEING PUBLISHED BY AL GORE!?” one irate reader demanded (and this was before he won the Nobel Peace Prize!). But another told us, “Thank GOODness (sic) someone in this industry is writing on this subject.”
No matter where you stand in the climate change debate, the survey numbers were irrefutable – 77 percent of you said your clients are becoming more environmentally conscious. And 72 percent told us their customers look to them as their primary guide for plant selection and landscaping decisions. Like it or not, this trend is going to influence the way you do business in the foreseeable future.
At the end of the day, we took no position on the validity of climate change positions. Indeed, the evidence presented in our story simply shows that we are currently in a warming trend highlighted by erratic weather patterns. This says nothing concrete about where that weather trend is heading.
I tend to agree with our surveyed readers, who believe global warming is happening and is caused by humans. But I’ll leave those questions for scientists to resolve. Our job here is to cut through the hype and address this topic in a way that cuts to the heart of the matter and allows you to rationally manage a business in the face of erratic weather patterns and warming temperatures.