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Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Emerald Isle could turn brown

Climate change could turn Ireland's legendary emerald landscape a dusty tan, with profound effects on its society and culture, a new study released in time for St Patrick's Day has reported.

Entitled Changing Shades of Green, the report by the Irish American Climate Project twins science gleaned from the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and the musings of a poet, a fiddler, a fisherman, a farmer and others with deep connections to Ireland.

"The lush greens could turn to brown and the soft rains that people talk about as a blessing - 'May the rains fall soft upon your field' - those soft rains could turn harsh," said Kevin Sweeney, an environmental consultant who directs the climate project.

"It really is changing the look and feel of Ireland," Mr Sweeney said.

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