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UMass-Lowell Climate Scientist Concerned About Unusual Record Warmth

BOSTON (CBS) – New Englanders got an early taste of spring this weekend with record warmth. But it isn't really the weather we should be accustomed to in early January.

And that has some climate experts concerned.

Golf in mid-January, ice skating in short sleeves. It's a bonus right?

Prof. Juliette Rooney-Varga from the UMass-Lowell climate change initiative said it's days like these that make her nervous.

"I got out and enjoyed the weather and it feels nice to have 70 degrees in the middle of January," she said. "Having said that, a lot of us also have a little bit of an uneasy feeling. Is this something that is a sign of something bigger and maybe even something wrong?"

The professor said we can expect to see more warm winter days in the future, but she believes that won't be all.

"More wildfires in Australia and California more flooding in the city of Boston and my home town of Somerville. We expect to see sea level rise taking out many of our favored places to go on days like this," she said.

Rooney-Varga said it won't just be more wildfires. She said if no action is taken, parts of the Middle East and North Africa may become uninhabitable.

So what does she believe should be done?

"Some of the most effective things we can do, and we're doing now, is shifting our source of electricity. We can use solar wind hydro geo thermal," Rooney-Varga said.

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