CORVALLIS, Ore. (AP) -- Scientists report that rising temperatures appear to be responsible for cutting the snowpack in Oregon's Cascade Range in half over the past 77 years.

The report from Oregon State University released Tuesday found that the warming trend is seen most in the spring. Temperatures are up almost 4 degrees since 1958 in January, March and April.

Meanwhile, there has been no significant trend in precipitation.

Geosciences professor Julia Jones says the shrinking snowpack has been the most visible impact of global warming, and will continue into the future.

The mountain snowpack acts as a natural reservoir for rivers that are crucial to salmon, farming and ranching.

Copyright 2009 The AP.

Recommended for you