Drought’s Bright Future

February 12, 2015

solar-flare-tessa-hunt-woodlandMostly-hazy sunshine this afternoon on California’s north coast, but on occasion the air is way-bright, and warmer than chilly, which is good.

Some bad climate news today (nothing new) with droughts now plaguing the American Southwest predicted to get worse — real worse, like out of the Middle Ages worse.
Via Scientific American:

But a new analysis released today says the drying will be even more extreme than previously predicted—the worst in nearly 1,000 years.
Some time between 2050 and 2100, extended drought conditions in both regions will become more severe than the megadroughts of the 12th and 13th centuries.

(Illustration: Tessa Hunt-Woodland‘s ‘Solar Flare,’ found here).

Next on the list is figuring when this shit starts shifting to severe drought, 20 years, 50? Although we here in California are now entering the fourth year of our own version of a millenium drought, the whole American Southwest is toast, other earlier research has already shown chance of droughts amazingly high for the region in the near future.

And now, even drier still — nutshell of the newest study from Climate Central:

The 1930s Dust Bowl created post-apocalyptic conditions for the Central Plains, but Lisa Graumlich, who heads the University of Washington’s College of the Environment, said that the severe drought that plagued the Southwest from 1100-1300, “makes the Dust Bowl look like a picnic.”
That drought occurred during what researchers have called the Medieval Climate Anomaly and contributed to widespread ecosystem shifts and the collapse of civilizations across the Southwest.
Yet both those droughts pale in comparison to the severity of drought projected to befall those regions — which encompass all or part of 17 states from California to Louisiana to Minnesota — during the latter half of the 21st century if greenhouse gas emissions continue to rise according to a new study published in Science Advances.
Both regions are all but guaranteed to experience a severe drought that would last at least a decade, with the odds of a drought lasting multiple decades at about 80 percent.
In comparison, the chances of a multidecadal drought occurring during 1950-2000 was less than 10 percent.

And as the earth warms, drier still — bright, rainless skies.

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