What is causing the US megadrought – and how does climate change make it worse?


Periods of extreme drought can be a normal part of global climate patterns, but rising temperatures may now be changing some regional climates for good


28 October 2022

TRUTH OR CONSEQUENCES, NEW MEXICO - AUGUST 15: An aerial view of a 'bathtub ring' of mineral deposits left by higher water levels at the drought-stricken Elephant Butte Reservoir on August 15, 2022 near Truth or Consequences, New Mexico. New Mexico?s largest reservoir is currently at 3.8 percent of its total capacity in spite of recent monsoon rains in the state. According to officials, water levels at Elephant Butte have been below average since around 2019 and the lake has not been able to meet full levels of irrigation demand for several years. Experts say that in spite of the monsoon rains bringing temporary relief to parts of the Southwest, the climate change-fueled megadrought remains entrenched in the West. (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)

‘Bathtub ring’ mineral deposits are visible due to extraordinarily low water levels at the Elephant Butte Reservoir in New Mexico

Mario Tama/Getty Images

Exceptionally severe and persistent droughts – or megadroughts – have wreaked havoc on human societies for thousands of years. A megadrought in northern China between AD 1627 and 1643, for instance, caused a famine that killed an estimated 20 million people and may have sparked a revolt that toppled the Ming Dynasty.

Source link

Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published.