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Global change in agricultural flash drought over the 21st century

Black, E. ORCID: (2024) Global change in agricultural flash drought over the 21st century. Advances in Atmospheric Sciences, 41 (2). pp. 209-220. ISSN 0256-1530

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1007/s00376-023-2366-5


Agricultural flash droughts are high-impact phenomena, characterized by rapid soil moisture dry down. The ensuing dry conditions can persist for weeks to months, with detrimental effects on natural ecosystems and crop cultivation. Increases in the frequency of these rare events in a future warmer climate would have significant societal impact. This study uses an ensemble of 10 Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP) models to investigate the projected change in agricultural flash drought during the 21st century. Comparison across geographical regions and climatic zones indicates that individual events are preceded by anomalously low relative humidity and precipitation, with long-term trends governed by changes in temperature, relative humidity, and soil moisture. As a result of these processes, the frequency of both upper-level and root-zone flash drought is projected to more than double in the mid-and-high latitudes over the 21st century, with hot spots developing in the temperate regions of Europe, and humid regions of South America, Europe, and southern Africa.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Science > School of Mathematical, Physical and Computational Sciences > NCAS
Science > School of Mathematical, Physical and Computational Sciences > Department of Meteorology
ID Code:112433


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