Tag Archives: drought

What would it take to end California’s drought?

The excitement about a potentially rain-bearing El Niño is building, and hopes for a swift end to California’s ongoing drought are multiplying. At the same time, many of us who have worked extensively on water issues in the state fear the momentum and progress made on much-needed water reforms will be lost. The prospect of […] … learn more→

Rising temperature, rising food prices

Agriculture as it exists today developed over 11,000 years of rather remarkable climate stability. It has evolved to maximize production within that climate system. Now, suddenly, the climate is changing. With each passing year, the agricultural system is becoming more out of sync with the climate system. In generations past, when there was an extreme […] … learn more→

Warmest decade on record brings record temperatures and weather extremes

In recent years weather events have whiplashed between the extremes of heat and cold, flooding and drought. Carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases—largely from the burning of coal, oil, and natural gas—have loaded up in the atmosphere, heating the planet and pushing humanity onto a climatic seesaw of weather irregularities. High-temperature records in many places […] … learn more→

Dust Bowl Revisited

On October 18, 2012, the Associated Press reported that “a massive dust storm swirling reddish-brown clouds over northern Oklahoma triggered a multi-vehicle accident along a major interstate…forcing police to shut down the heavily traveled roadway amid near blackout conditions.” Farmers in the region had recently plowed fields to plant winter wheat. The bare soil—desiccated by […] … learn more→

Rising temperature raising food prices

Over the last two months, the price of corn has been climbing. On July 19th, it exceeded $8 per bushel for the first time, taking the world into a new food price terrain. With heat and drought still smothering the Corn Belt, we may well see more all-time highs in coming weeks as the extent […] … learn more→

Princeton system tracks drought to aid disaster relief

Drought is often the precursor to disaster, but getting leads on its stealthy approach through remote or war-torn areas can be so difficult that relief agencies sometimes have little time to react before a bad situation becomes a calamity. The problem is that there is often no easy way to get data about water supplies […] … learn more→

Can ‘climate-smart’ agriculture help both Africa and the planet?

The glacial pace of international efforts to curb climate change continued at the UN climate talks in Durban, South Africa last week. Governments concluded that by 2015 they should agree on legally binding targets for greenhouse gas emissions that involve all major nations — including China, India and the United States. But they also agreed […] … learn more→