Climate Change Increases Extreme Rainfall In Even The Driest Areas Of The World
Climate change is already causing extremes in rainfall around the world, even in arid regions. The findings could mean a lot more rain in certain areas of the world as our climate warms.
Warm air holds more moisture, and previous research has found that global warming is already increasing the odds of extreme precipitation levels. However, climate models usually differ as to how that might play out at regional scales. While some models suggest that dry areas could become drier, new findings instead show that the rule does not hold over land.
In this latest study, the researchers defined extreme precipitation as the maximum rainfall or snowfall seen in a single day. They collected data on extreme precipitation from 11,000 weather stations using data recorded from 1951 to 2010. Then, the researchers found out which areas were wetter and drier than the global average and tracked changes in daily precipitation events.