Global Warming Boosts Chances of Civilization-Threatening Megadroughts Here And Abroad

By taking no serious action to slash carbon pollution and put the world on a path to 2°C warming (or less), humanity is voluntarily choosing to sharply boost the chances of the worst kinds of droughts — including the kind of multi-decade megadroughts that in the past have overturned entire civilizations.

In their self-described “conservative” new study, “Assessing the risk of persistent drought using climate model simulations and paleoclimate data,” scientists have now quantified the risk of devastating, prolonged drought in the southwestern U.S. (and the world) due to global warming.

The researchers from Cornell, University of Arizona and U.S. Geological Survey conclude that “the risk of a decade-scale megadrought in the coming century [in the SW] is at least 80 percent, and may be higher than 90 percent in certain areas.”

Here is the risk (averaged over each state) of a decade-long drought occurring sometime within the coming century:

USA-DroughtFuture-638x470.jpg 

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