Climate change may bring drought to temperate areas

Wet areas will get wetter and dry areas will get drier, according to one scientist.

  • May 6, 2013
  • L.A. Times

WASHINGTON – Climate change may increase the risk of extreme rainfall in the tropics and drought in the world's temperate zones, according to a new study led by NASA.

"These results in many ways are the worst of all possible worlds," said Peter Gleick, a climatologist and water expert who is president of the Pacific Institute, an Oakland research organization. "Wet areas will get wetter and dry areas will get drier."

The regions that could get the heaviest rainfall are along the equator, mainly over the Pacific Ocean and the Asian tropics. Increased aridity and drought could have a greater effect on human life, however, because those conditions are more likely to occur where most of the world's population lives.

In the Northern Hemisphere, drought-prone areas include the Southwestern United States, Mexico, North Africa, the Middle East, Pakistan and northwestern China. In the Southern Hemisphere, drought could become more likely in South Africa, northwestern Australia, coastal Central America and northeastern Brazil.

"Large changes in moderate rainfall, as well as prolonged no-rain events, can have the most impact on society because they occur in regions where most people live," said William Lau, the study's lead author and a scientist at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md.

For the rest of the story, click here.

Related

Obama plans to give small business a boost

February 1, 2011

The president's budget will include continued tax breaks and $2 billion to be invested directly in small businesses. They also will get funding and support from a private-public initiative led by AOL... Read More

Small business tax rule repealed

April 7, 2011

Congress voted to reverse course on a tax provision that would have required all businesses to file forms for every person or company with whom they did more than $600 worth of business in a year. Read More