Climate Change and Extreme Drought

dried_ground.jpgIn one of the most dire predictions regarding global heating to date, British scientists at the reknowned Hadley Centre for Climate Prediction and Research report that severe drought as a result of global warming [more] threatens to spread across half the Earth's land surface by 2100, turning one third of the planet into a desert.

“The study… models how a measure of drought known as the Palmer Drought Severity Index [search] (PDSI) is likely to increase globally during the coming century with predicted changes in rainfall and heat around the world because of climate change. It shows the PDSI figure for moderate drought, currently at 25 per cent of the Earth's surface, rising to 50 per cent by 2100, the figure for severe drought, currently at about 8 per cent, rising to 40 cent, and the figure for extreme drought, currently 3 per cent, rising to 30 per cent.”

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5 Responses

  1. Mark Alla'n Anand Dharm-Reese says:

    “Business as usual” got this situation established. “BAU” will not relieve us of this situation. People need to immediately embrace mutual organizations involving permaculture, so different, more personal forms of food production, can be established. All the needed FACTS to do so are existing. Easy how to do, in small steps.
    Otherwise, who will feed the humans, now that humans have murdered their mother by neglect of natural law? I was sending such warnings to VIPS 30 years ago, and eventually abandoned two careers because nobody cared.
    Thing is, must eat, every day. No rain. No food. Modern Permaculture methods can create ways for teams of people to produce their food. In parks, would be a start. In apartments.
    No rain, no food. But vast amounts of food can be created in very small spaces, when the rules are followed.

  2. ewoc says:

    I am familiar with the Palmer Drought Severity Index, as it is the standard measurement of drought in the field of water management. But can anyone explain how/why these percentages add up to more than 100%? How can an area be classified as both moderate, severe, and/or extreme at the same time?

  3. Glen says:

    Good question. I hadn't noticed that, but it is that way in the original article quoted. Must either be typo with the Indpendent (shame on them) or the classes must be able somehow to overlap. Anyone else know?

  4. Tony says:

    The new article at ENS quotes the same figures:

  5. Caley Ann Hand says:

    I'm not all that educated on the subject of global warming and human contributions to it, but I do know that what I'm hearing is quite alarming. President Bush is and has always been a person more concerned with making money and personal wealth. That is one reason why I think he doesn't want the United States to take any part, let alone take the lead, in a policy of clean energy and restoration of the enviornment. What's more important? Continued economic growth at the expense of the declining health of our enviornment, which our children will inherit, or that we start right now and learn to live with our enviornment, and start cleaning it up? I have an idea that should be regarded in conjunction with clean energy. Is it possible to start scrubbing our planet's air of unwanted particles that mankind has created by use of fossil fuels? If there is a way to develop plants that suck in our planets atmosphere and remove pollutants, then we should do it, regardless of cost. I hope some scientist and entrepreneurs get together to develop such a project. I read of selling carbon or some such thing. Well, why can't someone who develops a way to remove poisons in our atmosphere get paid for doing so through this carbon selling system. Anyway, just another thought of mine in regared to cleaning up our enviornment. I'm sure someone will say such a thing is impossible, or too costly. But what is the cost if we do nothing; maybe the extinction of most animals and plants, including humans. Look at our past history; not human history, but epochlogical history. Mass extinctions have happened just because of something that upset the ecological balance of our planet. Try thinking about that and see if you care.

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