(BRATTLEBORO, VT) Vermonters may have to shutter up their sugar shacks and shuffle off to Canada if they want to continue to live off the largesse of the maple tree.
Man-made or not, global warming seems to be shortening the sugaring season and causing our rough-skinned friends to skimp on the sweet sauce.
Eco-farmer, Matthias Jarling, who green farms 122 acres outside of Brattleboro, has seen his maple syrup output shrink by 38% since 1980. He insists that his trees are angry. "They've been furious since that [expletive deleted] B-actor from Hollywood got elected. With the exception of about three seasons in the mid-90's, they just won't produce."
Prominent scientists speculate that as conditions continue to deteriorate in the northeast, maples will increasingly creep across the border into Canada to find cooler and more favorable conditions.
"Of course they're going to go to Canada," Jarling said, before taking a long moment to reflect as he looked toward the Green Mountains. "Why wouldn't they go to Canada? Canada signed the Kyoto Treaty, didn't they? We didn't. Don't you think these mighty maples can sense who their friends are?"
Jarling was referring to the UN-sponsored Kyoto Protocol, a self-regulating treaty designed to reduce industry-produced greenhouse gases. Many scientists agree that greenhouse gases have drastically shrunk the polar icecaps.
The United States has refused to sign this agreement.