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News Picks : Greenhouse gas emissions causing less rain to fall in Australia

By: Physics Today
14 July 2014

New Scientist: Southwestern Australia is drying out because of rising human greenhouse gas emissions, according to a new study published in Nature Geoscience. Using a high-resolution global climate model, Thomas Delworth and Fanrong Zeng of Princeton University ran a series of simulations of the Australian climate both with and without the inclusion of greenhouse gas emissions. They found that only by including greenhouse gas emissions were they able to reproduce the diminishing rainfall levels over the past century. Moreover, they found that if emissions are not curbed by 2100, the average annual rainfall in southwestern Australia will drop by about 40% compared with the period 1911–74. Less rain is just one problem Australia has been experiencing because of climate change: The region has also seen more megadroughts, floods, heat waves, and bush fires.


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