Climate Change Delivers More Floods and Droughts

Climate Change

The effects of climate change are being felt in very unique ways around the world. Most people know about the effects global warming has on the polar ice caps, but climate change is also responsible for natural disasters like floods and droughts.

Around the world, both records for increased and decreased rainfall are reaching new highs. The effects of extreme rain and the lack of rain are very powerful on the areas they affect. As long as nothing is done about climate change, floods and droughts worldwide will only worsen.

The Effects of Floods and Droughts

Dead Crops

While floods and droughts are bad, most do not understand the severity of what they do. For starters, intense floods or droughts can cripple food sources in the area. Too much water is just as bad for crops as no rain at all.

Floods, in particular, can cost the areas affected millions of dollars. It’s no secret that large floods damage structures and destroy any electric devices they touch. Possibly the most devastating problem with floods is the number of resources used to recover from their effects.

As bad as floods are, droughts are no better. Intense droughts dry up water sources and dry out the area. This is particularly devastating in highly dense forest areas. Intense droughts make it easy for forest fires to form.

How Does Climate Change Cause Floods and Droughts

Climate change has a lot of consequences, the biggest being global warming. As the world gets warmer, the effects we see will get worse. In the case of causing floods, it’s quite simple.

Higher temperatures mean there will be more water evaporation in oceans.  It also means the air will get warmer and warmer.  Air can hold higher amounts of moisture. Starting to see a connection here?

Higher temperatures will make wet climates much wetter and cause intense flood rain to become much more common in those areas. On the other hand, drylands will become drier as temperatures increase making droughts even more severe in certain areas.

Climate Change Intensifies Natural Disasters

Hurricane Harvey

Natural disasters like hurricanes are becoming more powerful as a direct result of climate change. Hurricanes begin forming over warm water and as the Earth heats up, hurricanes will form more frequently and get more powerful.

As we saw with Hurricane Michael in 2018, the storm rapidly intensified when it reached the Florida panhandle and became a category 4 storm that ravaged the area. Superstorms like this are becoming more frequent as the ocean temperatures rise.

While the winds of the hurricanes are destructive, one of the worst side effects of a massive hurricane is the flooding left behind. As we saw with Hurricane Harvey in 2017, the flooding was extremely bad.

Is There Any Evidence

There are many people who are skeptical about climate change and the effects it has on the world, but a very recent report by the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society shows evidence linking climate change to the increasing intensity of floods and droughts in certain areas of the world.

The report states it has identified extreme weather events that would not have happened without climate change caused by humans. The report also examines sea level changes and other events that are linked to climate change.

Climate Change is Humanity’s Biggest Problem

Its effects are becoming more apparent every year and even skeptics are starting to see the truth in the matter. Climate change is responsible for rising sea levels, heatwaves, floods, droughts, hurricanes, and much more. If humankind continues on its current path, the effects of climate change will intensify and threaten humanity.

However, the problem is becoming more widely accepted around the world and the recent climate conference is a good indicator of the world’s effort. The Paris Agreement has become stronger and is aiming at cutting even more greenhouse emissions. It has also increased the level of transparency countries must reveal about their emissions.

This is a great sign and as long as more push back against climate change happens now, it may not too late.

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