‘Megadrought’ threatens U.S. Southwest, Plains starting in 2050

In a study published by the journal Science Advances, the researchers forecast that future drought risk in U.S. Southwest and Central Plains regions is likely to exceed even the driest conditions experienced during extensive Medieval-era periods that have been dubbed “megadroughts.”

Urban_Hydrologics_Drought

The U.S. Southwest and Central Plains regions are likely to be scorched by a decades-long “megadrought” in the second half of this century if climate change continues unabated, scientists from NASA and Cornell and Columbia universities have warned.  Future droughts will occur in a significantly warmer world, the study added, and conditions are likely to be a major added stress on both natural ecosystems and agriculture.

There is an 80 per cent chance of an extended drought between 2050 and 2099 unless aggressive steps are taken to mitigate the impacts of climate change, the article predicted. The researchers said their results point to a remarkably drier future, one that presents a substantial challenge and “falls far outside the contemporary experience of natural and human systems in Western North America.”

Worse Drought  Future droughts will occur in a significantly warmer world, the study added, and conditions are likely to be a major added stress on both natural ecosystems and agriculture. (Rich Pedroncelli/ Associated Press)

Text Source: Link to article HERE — CBC News Thomson Reuters

Image Credit: Image featured in article HERE — Associated Press

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s