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Author Topic: General Drought Stuff  (Read 48981 times)

Anne

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #100 on: July 07, 2015, 09:52:07 AM »
Hit by drought and seawater, Bangkok’s taps may run dry in a month
BANGKOK, July 7, 2015:
Bangkok’s tap water supply may run out in a month, as the country waits for long overdue rains to replenish sources depleted by drought and threatened by seawater creep, the chief of the capital’s water authority said.
Thailand is suffering its worst drought in more than a decade. In an effort to maintain water levels in the dams that supply water for agriculture in the provinces as well as taps in the capital Bangkok, the government has asked farmers to refrain from planting rice since last October.
Despite these measures, water levels are critically low in the three key reservoirs that flow into the Chao Phraya River, one of the two main sources of Bangkok’s tap water.
The quantity of water collected in the three dams totaled 5 billion cubic metres last November, compared to the normal 8 billion cubic metres, said Thanasak Watanathana, governor of the Metropolitan Waterworks Authority. As of Monday, there was about 660 million cubic metres left, according to the Royal Irrigation Department.
“Right now, there is only enough water in the dams to distribute for about 30 more days – if it doesn’t rain,” Thanasak told the Thomson Reuters Foundation in an interview.
More at the Rakyat Post: http://www.therakyatpost.com/world/2015/07/07/hit-by-drought-and-seawater-bangkoks-taps-may-run-dry-in-a-month/

Shared Humanity

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #101 on: July 07, 2015, 02:49:46 PM »
Sao Paulo, Brazil, Bangkok, the Central Valley.......as I read this stuff, I can't help but get the awful feeling that we are racing towards a human catastrophe of epic proportions. I have always felt that the current and rapidly worsening effects of weather change which is driven by AGW will overwhelm our ability to respond. My worst nightmare is that millions will begin to die as unanticipated weather disasters strike all over the planet.

Meanwhile, it is 63F and rainy in Chicago in the middle of July! We are on track for our 3rd straight ridiculously mild and moist summer. (I plan on posting a large 3 year analysis of Chicago weather on the weird weather thread by this weekend. It is truly weird.) The forecast through the remainder of July is for highs not much above 80F and often below it.

I will say it again. It is not just that we will have more sticky weather. My biggest fear is that the sticky weather will get stuck in a persistent pattern with disastrous results. My tomatoes and pepper plants are suffering again this year.

ritter

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #102 on: July 07, 2015, 06:10:12 PM »
(I plan on posting a large 3 year analysis of Chicago weather on the weird weather thread by this weekend. It is truly weird.)

I wonder if anywhere is experiencing "normal" weather... I'm very interested in your analysis. I'm wondering if Chicago may be one of those climate refuge areas as thing continue to swirl the bowl.

Sigmetnow

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #103 on: July 16, 2015, 07:29:07 PM »
Sakharam Bhagat, 66, now has three wives, two of whom he married only to make sure his household has water to drink and cook.

http://widerimage.reuters.com/story/water-wives
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Sigmetnow

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #104 on: July 16, 2015, 07:53:39 PM »
Thailand is suffering from the worst drought in four decades.
With practically no rain in months, farmers in central Thailand are in crisis mode with their livelihood at stake. 
Video: http://america.aljazeera.com/watch/shows/live-news/2015/7/thailand-is-suffering-from-the-worst-drought-in-four-decades.html
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Sigmetnow

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #105 on: July 16, 2015, 11:59:25 PM »
Update on conditions in South Florida.
To pull the area out the drought, NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center estimates that 20-22 inches of rain is needed — the highest values anywhere in the nation.

The surprising, tropical location of the worst drought east of the Rockies
http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/capital-weather-gang/wp/2015/07/10/the-worst-drought-east-of-the-rockies-is-happening-in-a-place-that-might-surprise-you/
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Sigmetnow

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #106 on: August 11, 2015, 07:57:00 PM »
« Last Edit: August 11, 2015, 08:49:18 PM by Sigmetnow »
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Sigmetnow

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #107 on: August 12, 2015, 05:35:00 PM »
Parts of Texas Nearing Record Dry Streak After Historic Rain This Spring
http://www.weather.com/climate-weather/drought/news/texas-record-wet-spring-to-near-record-dry-summer
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Sigmetnow

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #108 on: August 19, 2015, 07:52:46 PM »
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Sigmetnow

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #109 on: August 23, 2015, 07:56:14 PM »
Drought In Europe Worst Since 2003
Much of the European continent has been affected by a severe drought so far this summer, one of the worst since the drought and heat wave of summer of 2003, according to the latest report by the European Drought Observatory (EDO). The drought, which particularly affects France, Benelux, Germany, Hungary, the Czech Republic, northern Italy and northern Spain, is caused by a combination of prolonged rain shortages and exceptionally high temperatures.
...
Another characteristic of this period was the persistence of the thermal anomalies: in the entire Mediterranean region, and particularly in Spain, the heat wave was even longer than that of 2003, with maximum daily temperatures consistently above 30°C for durations of 30 to 35 days (even more than 40 days in Spain).

http://www.science20.com/news_articles/drought_in_europe_worst_since_2003-156905
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opensheart

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #110 on: August 25, 2015, 12:24:11 AM »
Small farmers in Central America’s “dry corridor” stretching from Panama to Guatemala, including parts of Honduras, Nicaragua, and El Salvador, are hardest hit by Central America’s drought, brought on by a particularly strong El Nino climatic effect this year.


http://www.telesurtv.net/english/news/1-Million-Guatemalans-Hungry-as-Drought-Parches-Central-America-20150815-0009.html

http://www.telesurtv.net/english/news/Famine-Spreads-to-10th-Honduran-Community-amid-Ongoing-Drought-20150818-0014.html

Sigmetnow

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #111 on: August 26, 2015, 06:25:15 PM »
Hiker Burned, 2 Dogs Die After Leaping Into Idaho Hot Spring
Temperatures at Panther Creek, usually mild enough for human bathing, had apparently grown dangerously high, possibly from drought conditions that may have curtailed cool water flows that normally mix with the springs' geothermally heated groundwater, forest spokeswoman Amy Baumer said

http://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/hiker-burned-dog-dies-after-leaping-idaho-hot-spring-n416026
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Sigmetnow

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #112 on: August 28, 2015, 07:38:01 PM »
European ‘extreme weather belt’ linked to worst drought since 2003
Rainless weeks and relentless heat desiccated a vast tract of central European land separating the continent’s drier south from its wetter north between 1 April and 31 July, according to a report by the European drought observatory (EDO).
...
Agricultural production has now slumped in large parts of a zone stretching eastwards from central France through south-central Germany into Poland, Hungary and Ukraine, and southwards into northern Italy and Spain.

Grain harvests in Germany have fallen 11% and apple harvests 21% on last year’s figures, while a 28% drop in corn output is expected by government officials in France. In Poland, record lows in river water levels have revealed Jewish tombstones and Soviet fighter planes, as well as human remains, buried for decades or more.

http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2015/aug/27/european-extreme-weather-belt-linked-to-worst-drought-since-2003
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Sigmetnow

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #113 on: September 09, 2015, 09:45:00 PM »
Europe is parched, in a sign of times to come
Much of Europe is in the midst of extreme heat and drought that will become more common in a hotter world
"Extreme temperatures and dry conditions as observed this year are likely to increase in frequency and severity over the coming decades, posing great challenges to our societies."

http://www.theguardian.com/environment/climate-consensus-97-per-cent/2015/sep/09/europe-is-parched-in-a-sign-of-times-to-come
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Sigmetnow

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #114 on: September 10, 2015, 02:30:57 AM »
@EricHolthaus: Five western states are on pace for their hottest year in history. In California, 2014-15 has shattered records. http://t.co/32etJgbzck

https://twitter.com/ericholthaus/status/641744339987771393
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Sigmetnow

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #115 on: October 11, 2015, 01:49:12 PM »
Deforestation and Drought
The sky-borne river over the Amazon carries more water than the Amazon River itself. It begins as moisture that builds over the Atlantic Ocean, and then flows westward over the emerald crown of the Amazon, where it picks up far more moisture. The laden clouds eventually bump up against the Andes and are steered south and then east, which means rain for Bolivia and Brazil.

One way forests may move water is known as “biotic pumping.” As water transpires into the atmosphere above the forest, the theory holds, it creates a low-pressure system that sucks in air surrounding it, eventually and continually pumping moisture inland from the ocean. Cutting down forests degrades these low-pressure systems, essentially turning off the pump. Large-scale deforestation is thus believed to be a major contributor to the extreme drought in Brazil.

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/10/11/opinion/sunday/deforestation-and-drought.html
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Laurent

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #116 on: October 20, 2015, 07:07:23 PM »
LIKE California, much of Brazil is gripped by one of the worst droughts in its history. Huge reservoirs are bone dry and water has been rationed in São Paulo, a megacity of 20 million people; in Rio; and in many other places.

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/10/11/opinion/sunday/deforestation-and-drought.html?smid=tw-nytopinion&smtyp=cur&_r=0

oren

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #117 on: October 22, 2015, 07:21:09 AM »
http://www.news24.com/Africa/News/Millions-hungry-as-Ethiopia-drought-bites-20151002

Addis Ababa - The number of hungry Ethiopians needing food aid has risen sharply due to poor rains and the El Nino weather phenomenon with around 7.5 million people now in need, aid officials said on Friday.


Sigmetnow

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #118 on: October 30, 2015, 03:55:42 PM »
@NOAANCEIclimate: ICYMI Oct 27 #DroughtMonitor: moderate to exceptional drought covers 30.3% of contig US https://t.co/hs7rCpQMsY https://t.co/sefPB1RQDx

https://twitter.com/noaanceiclimate/status/660100137960742912
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Sigmetnow

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #119 on: November 01, 2015, 03:38:55 PM »
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Sigmetnow

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #120 on: November 02, 2015, 12:43:40 AM »
Small photo gallery includes sea gulls over "shade balls", and homeowners ripping out their swimming pool.

Viewpoints: Is Arizona facing a megadrought?
http://www.azcentral.com/story/opinion/op-ed/2015/11/01/arizona-megadrought/74882132/
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solartim27

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #121 on: November 09, 2015, 09:42:56 PM »
After pumping their aquifers dry, a Saudi dairy comes to the southwest US for feed:
http://hereandnow.wbur.org/2015/11/03/arizona-water
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AbruptSLR

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #122 on: November 12, 2015, 05:23:42 PM »
Per the linked BBC article, the UN estimates that by 2020 over 50 million sub-Saharan African will move to North Africa and Europe due to desertification:

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-34790661

Extract: According to the UN, over 50 million people could move from the desertified areas of sub-Saharan Africa towards North Africa and Europe by 2020."
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AbruptSLR

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #123 on: November 15, 2015, 01:19:10 AM »
The linked (open access) research concludes that beginning now more and more people, up to 2 billion people, will increasingly suffer from water shortages due to climate change:

Justin S Mankin, Daniel Viviroli, Deepti Singh, Arjen Y Hoekstra and Noah S Diffenbaugh (2015), "The potential for snow to supply human water demand in the present and future",  Environmental Research Letters, Volume 10, Number 11


http://iopscience.iop.org/article/10.1088/1748-9326/10/11/114016


Abstract: "Runoff from snowmelt is regarded as a vital water source for people and ecosystems throughout the Northern Hemisphere (NH). Numerous studies point to the threat global warming poses to the timing and magnitude of snow accumulation and melt. But analyses focused on snow supply do not show where changes to snowmelt runoff are likely to present the most pressing adaptation challenges, given sub-annual patterns of human water consumption and water availability from rainfall. We identify the NH basins where present spring and summer snowmelt has the greatest potential to supply the human water demand that would otherwise be unmet by instantaneous rainfall runoff. Using a multi-model ensemble of climate change projections, we find that these basins (which together have a present population of ~2 billion people) are exposed to a 67% risk of decreased snow supply this coming century. Further, in the multi-model mean, 68 basins (with a present population of >300 million people) transition from having sufficient rainfall runoff to meet all present human water demand to having insufficient rainfall runoff. However, internal climate variability creates irreducible uncertainty in the projected future trends in snow resource potential, with about 90% of snow-sensitive basins showing potential for either increases or decreases over the near-term decades. Our results emphasize the importance of snow for fulfilling human water demand in many NH basins, and highlight the need to account for the full range of internal climate variability in developing robust climate risk management decisions.

See also:
http://in.reuters.com/article/2015/11/12/us-usa-climate-water-idINKCN0T10OO20151112

Extract: "Large swathes of the northern hemisphere, home to some 2 billion people, could suffer increasing water shortages due to shrinking snowpacks, researchers said on Thursday.
Data shows reduced snowpacks - the seasonal accumulation of snow - will likely imperil water supplies by 2060 in regions from California's farmlands to war-torn areas of the Middle East, according to a team of scientists in the United States and Europe.
In total, nearly a hundred water basins dependent on snow across the northern hemisphere run the chance of decline.
"Water managers in a lot of places may need to prepare for a world where the snow reservoir no longer exists," said Justin Mankin, the study's lead author and a researcher at Columbia University's Earth Institute in New York, in a statement."

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Laurent

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #124 on: December 19, 2015, 08:04:31 PM »
Scarred Riverbeds and Dead Pistachio Trees in a Parched Iran
http://www.nytimes.com/2015/12/19/world/middleeast/scarred-riverbeds-and-dead-pistachio-trees-in-a-parched-iran.html?partner=rss&emc=rss
POUZE KHOON, Iran — The early-morning sun meagerly brightened the gloom of this sad township, a collection of empty, crumbling houses along a highway through the dusty desert landscape in southeastern Iran.

Until a decade or so ago, Amin Shoul would come here every year to help his father harvest pistachios, the nuts that are as much a symbol of Iran as caviar. Now, with the last reserves of groundwater tapped out, the family’s grove and the seemingly endless fields beyond it are filled with dead trees, their bone-colored branches a deathly contrast to the turquoise sky.

Mr. Shoul, 32, a journalist, said he and his family had moved away years ago, leaving the house to squatters, unemployed laborers living off meager government stipends — and even they had started to leave. “I don’t see how we can ever return to the past,” he remarked, matter-of-factly.
Continue reading the main story
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    Visitors along the recessed shores of Beal's Point in California's Folsom Lake State Recreation Area. A new study has found that inevitable droughts in California were made worse by global warming.
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As Iran emerges from isolation after signing a nuclear agreement with the West, attention has focused on its business relations, particularly in the oil and airline industries. But Iran needs expertise in a number of areas, including the environment. Most pressing in that regard is its impending water crisis.

plinius

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #125 on: December 20, 2015, 12:56:28 PM »

Sigmetnow

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #126 on: December 22, 2015, 12:46:19 AM »
Australia:  Marron rescue: Crayfish moved from dry Collie River bed
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-12-21/struggling-marron-rescued-from-dry-collie-river-bed/7046720
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Laurent

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #127 on: January 22, 2016, 12:30:10 PM »
Bolivia's second-largest lake dries up and may be gone forever, lost to climate change
http://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/jan/22/bolivias-second-largest-lake-dries-up-and-may-be-gone-forever-lost-to-climate-change

JimD

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #128 on: January 25, 2016, 10:09:32 PM »
Here in Prescott AZ where I am living the last year when we had equal to or greater than the historical average for yearly precipitation was 1998. 

I had thought there was a good chance for 2015 to break that streak but it was not to be as we ended up about 16% below the historical normal. 

Of interest is that the historical normal precipitation number over the last 17 years has dropped over 1 inch from what it was in 1998...and we did not hit the new 2015 calculated normal in any of those 17 years.  Records here go back to the 1880's.
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DoomInTheUK

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #129 on: January 26, 2016, 12:48:01 PM »
Jim

You're welcome to all of ours - here in the North West UK it's rained almost everyday since the end of November, and still no end in sight. Everything is so wet that we even managed to produce a mud slide from in a 12 foot high embankment.

It managed to be both surprising and pitifully small at the same time.

I think we'd welcome a (short) drought - it might give us chance to dry out.

Gray-Wolf

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #130 on: January 26, 2016, 01:17:33 PM »
Well here in Mytholmroyd, Hebden Bridge we are with you in that plea D.I.T.UK!!!

I have 30 Army personnel just outside my garden awaiting calls for help ( I think the bulk of today's has gone North of us??) and the Environment Agency have been sandbagging like crazy the past 3 days so I'm thinking that Friday's 'Atmospheric River' is expected to cause more issues here???
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DoomInTheUK

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #131 on: January 26, 2016, 01:56:18 PM »
Good luck with that GW, I think we've all lost our sense of humour with the weather this winter.

I find it ludicrous that anyone can still deny AGW after the last few months. We're busy evolving gills, the East Coast USA is planning on exporting igloos whilst the West Coast are writing up recipes for sand.

JimD

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #132 on: January 26, 2016, 03:33:43 PM »
Good luck with that GW, I think we've all lost our sense of humour with the weather this winter.

I find it ludicrous that anyone can still deny AGW after the last few months. We're busy evolving gills, the East Coast USA is planning on exporting igloos whilst the West Coast are writing up recipes for sand.

I feel for you.  Folks often talk about the new drought regimes and their impact over the short and long term.  But what is happening to you is just as impactful.  Think what it would be like there if the new climate norm is 50% more precipitation than the historical norm from now on and the extreme years are 200-300% of what they used to be.    Great Britain is already a cool wet place so I imagine it would become a giant dreary bog.  Just like here there would eventually be a wide ranging change in the flora and fauna that would dramatically change how people could live and grow food.
We do not err because truth is difficult to see. It is visible at a glance. We err because this is more comfortable. Alexander Solzhenitsyn

How is it conceivable that all our technological progress - our very civilization - is like the axe in the hand of the pathological criminal? Albert Einstein

Sigmetnow

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #133 on: January 27, 2016, 07:07:13 PM »
Colombia's Poorest Suffer as Water Cut in Cali and Medellin
 (Includes a video on Bolivia's disappearing Lake Poopo.)
http://www.telesurtv.net/english/news/Colombias-Poorest-Suffer-as-Water-Cut-in-Cali-and-Medellin---20160120-0025.html
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Tor Bejnar

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #134 on: February 05, 2016, 08:54:03 PM »
Cross-posting from the 2015/16 El Niño, the aftermath thread (Reply #212):
The linked open access reference indicates that the US Southwest may have already been pushed into a long-term drought cycle due to climate change, that is only partially disrupted by the current El Nino
Andreas F. Prein, Gregory J. Holland, Roy M. Rasmussen, Martyn P. Clark & Mari R. Tye (2016), "Running dry: The U.S. Southwest's drift into a drier climate state", Geophysical Research Letters, DOI: 10.1002/2015GL066727


http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/2015GL066727/abstract?campaign=wlytk-41855.5282060185

Abstract: "Changes in precipitation have far-reaching consequences on human society and ecosystems as has been demonstrated by recent severe droughts in California and the Oklahoma region. Droughts are beside tropical cyclones the most costly weather and climate related extreme events in the U.S. We apply a weather type (WT) analysis to reanalysis data from 1979–2014 that characterize typical weather conditions over the contiguous United States. This enables us to assign precipitation trends within 1980–2010 to changes in WT frequencies and changes in precipitation intensities. We show that in the North Atlantic and Midwest region precipitation intensity changes are the major driver of increasing precipitation trends. In the U.S. Southwest, however, WT frequency changes lead to a significant precipitation decrease of up to −25% related to an increase in anticyclonic conditions in the North East Pacific. This trend is partly counteracted by increasing precipitation intensities."

See also:
http://www.climatecentral.org/news/southwest-drier-climate-change-19990
Extract: "The Southwest is already the most arid part of the U.S. Now new research indicates it’s becoming even more dry as wet weather patterns, quite literally, dry up.
The change could herald a pattern shift and raises the specter of megadrought in the region.
“We see a very intense trend in the Southwest,” Andreas Prein, a postdoctoral researcher at the National Center for Atmospheric Research, said. “The Southwest might already have drifted into a drier climate state.”"
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Sigmetnow

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #135 on: February 08, 2016, 08:07:55 PM »
Joe Romm in ThinkProgress about the NCAR study (Reply #134 above):

Southwest Enters ‘Drier Climate State’ Raising Specter Of Megadroughts
Climate models have long predicted that “a belt of higher average pressure that now sits closer to the equator will move north,” as NCAR explains. “This high-pressure belt is created as air that rises over the equator moves poleward and then descends back toward the surface. The sinking air causes generally drier conditions over the region and inhibits the development of rain-producing systems.” NCAR points out that “Many of the world’s deserts, including the Sahara, are found in such regions of sinking air, which typically lie around 30 degrees latitude on either side of the equator. Climate models project that these zones will move further poleward. The result is a generally drier Southwest.”

http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2016/02/08/3746706/southwest-enters-drier-climate-state/
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Shared Humanity

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #136 on: February 09, 2016, 12:20:56 AM »
A mega drought wiped out a thriving native American civilization in the Southwest, the Anasazi in the 1100's. For those who dismiss this culture as not modern and therefore less adaptable to drought, the footprint and needs of this culture were far less than modern America. A mega drought will be far more disastrous for the modern Southwest.

John Batteen

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #137 on: February 09, 2016, 04:04:17 AM »
I don't think it will be so bad.  They use gobs of water irrigating palm trees, golf courses, cotton fields, pecan orchards, you name it.  If all they had to do was keep people hydrated, food cooked, and sewage piped away, they could use 10% of what they currently use or less.  They have the entire Colorado river diverted which the Anasazi did not.  And they also don't need to grow any of their own food, they could truck it all in instead of trucking it all out.  The Anasazi didn't have that option.  If they would quit trying to turn the desert into a rainforest they would have plenty of water.

It will radically change society and some people might die due to lack of planning (by the government/infrastructure), but I doubt it will eliminate civilization there.

TerryM

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #138 on: February 09, 2016, 05:11:52 AM »
John B.
While it is possible that humanity could be sustained in the South West with a 90% water deficit, civilization, as we've come to understand it could not survive.
California exists at one level as a huge food exporting machine. Shutting down production throws millions out of work as well as increasing food costs across the country. No politician could give such an order without being driven from office.

The Anasazi didn't survive the drought because their local governing structures could no longer defend against hunter/gatherer raiding parties. Some of the larger communities were build beside rivers that never dried up. When drought caused population decline they moved to more defensible, but less well suited to farming locals. This resulted in further population decline & soon roving bands of raiders drove them all the way back to Pueblos.
The drought wounded the Anasazi, but it was the strengthening of neighboring raiders that ended their civilization in most regions.
Mad Max anyone?
Terry

Sigmetnow

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #139 on: March 01, 2016, 10:00:43 PM »
Australia:  Will Victoria's desalination plant need to get bigger?
A risk management framework developed by Melbourne's water businesses shows the city is entering the "action" zone that includes an order of water from the desalination plant and "augmentation decisions to maintain water security".

http://www.theage.com.au/victoria/will-victorias-desalination-plant-need-to-get-bigger-20160228-gn5k26.html
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Sigmetnow

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #140 on: March 05, 2016, 01:36:51 AM »
Vietnam hit by worst drought in 90 years
HANOI: Vietnam is suffering its worst drought in nearly a century with salinization hitting farmers especially hard in the crucial southern Mekong delta, experts said Monday.

“The water level of the Mekong River has gone down to its lowest level since 1926, leading to the worst drought and salinization there,” Nguyen Van Tinh, deputy head of the hydraulics department under the Ministry of Agriculture, told AFP.

The low-lying and heavily cultivated Mekong region is home to more than 20 million people and is the country’s rice basket.

Intensive cultivation and rising sea levels already make it one of the world’s most ecologically sensitive regions.

http://www.arabnews.com/world/news/888906
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AbruptSLR

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #141 on: March 07, 2016, 04:41:53 PM »
We frequently read about the current droughts in the US Southwest, in the Middle East, Ethiopia/Somalia, in the Tropical Rainforests; but the following two articles provide particulars about the current droughts in South Africa and Vietnam (which got worse in February).  See also Sigmetnow's immediately prior post:

First article on South Africa's drought:
http://qz.com/620499/science-is-warning-us-that-a-food-crisis-is-coming-to-southern-africa-will-we-stop-it/

Extract: "In April, harvest season begins in Southern Africa. An ongoing drought means the season will yield a historically poor crop. Countries including Malawi, South Africa, and Zimbabwe will have major shortfalls of grain. By one count, more than 20 million people in the region already have limited access to food—notwithstanding the drought. Without intervention, the next year will put those people and millions more at risk of malnutrition or even starvation.
But knowing all this makes intervention more possible than ever.
Famines are a powerful illustration of how suddenly nature can undercut a poor or poorly prepared society. We have paid dearly for our failure to respond to them efficiently. Economist Stephen Devereux has estimated 70 million people (pdf) were killed by famine in the 20th century alone."


Caption for first image: "The Agricultural Stress Index for Malawi for four successive Februaries. Darker reds indicate a greater chance of crop failure"

Second Article on Vietnam's drought
http://www.arabnews.com/world/news/888906

Extract: "Vietnam is suffering its worst drought in nearly a century with salinization hitting farmers especially hard in the crucial southern Mekong delta, experts said Monday.
“The water level of the Mekong River has gone down to its lowest level since 1926, leading to the worst drought and salinization there,” Nguyen Van Tinh, deputy head of the hydraulics department under the Ministry of Agriculture, told AFP."

“It is not the strongest or the most intelligent who will survive but those who can best manage change.”
― Leon C. Megginson

Sigmetnow

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #142 on: March 17, 2016, 12:32:06 AM »
Venezuela is shutting down for a week as the government struggles with a deepening electricity crisis.

President Nicolas Maduro gave everyone an extra three days off work next week, extending the two-day Easter holiday, according to a statement in the Official Gazette published late Tuesday. Maduro had originally said over the weekend that the extended holiday would only apply to state employees.

The government has rationed electricity and water supplies across the country for months and urged citizens to avoid waste as Venezuela endures a prolonged drought that has slashed output at hydroelectric dams. The ruling socialists have blamed the shortage on the El Nino weather phenomena and “sabotage” by their political foes, while critics cite a lack of maintenance and poor planning.

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-03-16/venezuela-to-shut-down-for-a-week-as-electricity-crisis-mounts
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Sigmetnow

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #143 on: March 19, 2016, 08:00:13 PM »
Worst Mediterranean drought in 900 years has human fingerprints all over it
What did the authors find regarding the recent droughts in the Mediterranean? Well in recent decades, there has been a persistent and long-duration drought in the regions of Greece and the Levant region. The authors found that although the Greek droughts have been severe, they do not deviate from droughts that have been observed in the past.

In the Levant region, the recent drought (1998–2012) exceeds what they have seen in the past 900 years. In fact, the recent drought is likely the driest period in the last 900 years and very likely the driest period in the last 500 years.

Here is what Dr. Cook told me:

To really understand the extent to which climate change is affecting extreme events, like droughts, you need to understand the full range of natural variability. This is why paleoclimate is so important - it gives us a way to extend our understanding way past the relatively short instrumental record of the last 100 to 150 years. In this study, we found that the recent drought in the Levant region of the eastern Mediterranean is likely worse than any comparable period of the last 900 years. This provides some independent support for other studies that have argued that climate change is intensifying drying in the region.

http://www.theguardian.com/environment/climate-consensus-97-per-cent/2016/mar/18/worst-mediterranean-drought-in-900-years-has-human-fingerprints-all-over-it

(The Levant is the eastern Mediterranean area now covered by Israel, Lebanon, part of Syria, and western Jordan. The Taurus Mountains are to the north; the Zagros Mountains, in the east, the Sinai peninsula, to the south.)
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Sigmetnow

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #144 on: March 23, 2016, 02:11:02 PM »
White House Responds To Western Governors’ Call For Action On Drought
Much of the western United States is in its 16th consecutive year of drought and, because reservoir levels have shrunk to 50 percent of capacity, water users in the Colorado River Basin may experience cuts in water deliveries in the coming months.

President Obama’s memo to executive branch departments and agencies lays out the administration’s plan to bolster state and local efforts to prepare for and adapt to drought.

The goals align with key themes that Governor Brian Sandoval (R-NV) highlighted as important to stakeholders at last year’s drought forum. These goals include: improving the collection and sharing of scientific data, better communicating drought risk, advancing market-based approaches for infrastructure and efficiency, and supporting innovative water use, efficiency, and technology.

“With climate change, longer and harder droughts will be the new normal,” said David J. Hayes, Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress and former Deputy Secretary of the Interior. “The President’s call for a whole-of-government approach to help stressed communities deal with hard droughts is welcome news. Hopefully, it is the harbinger of a more coordinated and focused response to the impacts that climate change already is having on our nation’s resources.”

http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2016/03/22/3762440/western-white-house-drought-action/
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mati

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #145 on: March 23, 2016, 02:30:07 PM »
Dr. Jeff Masters has put out a blog post about 10 civilizations that collapsed due to drought:

http://www.wunderground.com/blog/JeffMasters/ten-civilizations-or-nations-that-collapsed-from-drought
and so it goes

sidd

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #146 on: March 28, 2016, 11:28:14 PM »
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-india-35888535

I went across the Farakka Barrage shortly after it was built, and the thing is huge. I believe that trip was quite early in the monsoon season, but the river was, nevertheless, very very impressive. The images in the BBC article are telling, I enclose a view of the plant and the feeder canal. Two plus Gwatt coalburner offline for ten days is a nice , but the cause tears me up.

On that trip I think I was also at Dibrugarh where the Brahmaputra makes the big hook east. That river was even more impressive than the Ganges at Farakka. I wonder how it is doing.

Sigmetnow

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #147 on: April 03, 2016, 07:05:32 PM »
Bill McKibben: "Water levels along the Ganges falling fast as groundwater is over-pumped. Potentially grave "
https://twitter.com/billmckibben/status/716654020094332928

Is India facing its worst-ever water crisis?
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-india-35888535
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Sigmetnow

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #148 on: April 09, 2016, 02:26:04 AM »
Study solves two mysteries about wobbling Earth
Using satellite data on how water moves around Earth, NASA scientists have solved two mysteries about wobbles in the planet's rotation — one new and one more than a century old. The research may help improve our knowledge of past and future climate.
...
Lining up a graph of the east-west wobble during the period when GRACE data were available against a graph of changes in continental water storage for the same period, the JPL scientists spotted a startling similarity between the two. Changes in polar ice appeared to have no relationship to the wobble — only changes in water on land. Dry years in Eurasia, for example, corresponded to eastward swings, while wet years corresponded to westward swings.

When the researchers input the GRACE observations on changes in land water mass from April 2002 to March 2015 into classic physics equations that predict pole positions, they found that the results matched the observed east-west wobble very closely. "This is much more than a simple correlation," coauthor Ivins said. "We have isolated the cause."

The discovery raises the possibility that the 115-year record of east-west wobbles in Earth's spin axis may, in fact, be a remarkably good record of changes in land water storage. "That could tell us something about past climate — whether the intensity of drought or wetness has amplified over time, and in which locations," said Adhikari.

http://climate.nasa.gov/news/2428/
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Sigmetnow

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Re: General Drought Stuff
« Reply #149 on: April 20, 2016, 10:21:01 PM »
Eric Holthaus:  Lake Mead still on pace to reach <1075ft on Dec 31 2017. Would trigger mandatory cuts in AZ. 
https://twitter.com/ericholthaus/status/722827896541196289


http://www.usbr.gov/lc/region/g4000/24mo.pdf
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