Ghost Town Climatology
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Fred Chambers, an Associate Professor of Geography and Environmental Sciences at the University of Colorado, is studying what he calls "ghost town climatology," or the declining temperature of a region as it is abandoned by human activity. He describes it as "a reverse urban heat island effect."
There's not much info available right now on his website, but the idea of weather patterns being generated by ghost towns—abandoned villages in the mountains creating artificial winters that haunt those in the city down below—is a captivating one. As if, to exaggerate the study's implications, you could hike up into the hills one day and locate the source of all that snow, stumbling, half-blind and frostbitten, into a dead valley of churches and town halls, fighting against a wind those empty buildings help to generate.