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Study: Interrupted Jet Streams Worsen Droughts

Just in the last 15 years, devastating drought in California, heat waves across the United States and western Europe, deadly flooding in Pakistan -- all were made worse when manmade climate change altered these massive airstreams, they reported in the journal Scientific Reports.

"Our work shows that climate change isn't just leading to more extreme weather through the usual mechanisms," said lead author Michael Mann, a professor at Penn State University in the United States.

These "usual mechanisms" include warmer temperatures leading to more heat waves and droughts, and additional moisture in the air leading to more flooding or snowfall.

"In addition to these effects, global warming is changing the behaviour of the jet stream in a way that favours more extreme and persistent weather anomalies," Mann told AFP.

"We have uncovered a clear fingerprint of human activity."

NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center Scientific Visualization Studio

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