HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Research reveals use of tree rings and ocean temperature shifts in anticipating megadroughts

Not long ago, conventional wisdom was that you couldn't predict the climate for more than a few days in advance. Then came the awareness of El Nio and La Nia and the forecast window increased to as much as 6 to 9 months, depending on the region and season. But a forthcoming study in the Geophysical Research Letters suggests that opposing shifts in Tropical Pacific and North Atlantic Ocean temperatures may foretell persistence of disastrous, multiyear droughts across the North American continent.

Forecasts longer than the 6 to 9 months typical today, if possible, would rely on two principles: the well-defined relationship between temperatures in the upper one meter of the ocean, so-called sea surface temperatures, and precipitation on land. The second principle is the ocean's thermal inertia. Once an ocean basin begins to cool or warm anomalously, it generally tends to stay that way for several years and even decades. If these slow shifts in ocean regime can be identified in their early stages, then perhaps they can used to assess the probability of disastrous, multiyear droughts across the North American continent and elsewhere.

In this light, the study published today evaluates multidecadal, precipitation variability across a network of 750-year-long tree-ring chronologies from the central and southern Rockies. The study suggests that the Great Plains, the Rockies, and the Southwest are stricken by the same 'megadrought' when for multiple years the tropical Pacific turns cold at the same time that the North Atlantic warms. The geographic scale of such megadroughts is determined by the failure of winter (November-March), early summer (May-June) and mid- to late summer (July-September) precipitation, each of which has specific links to tropical Pacific and North Atlantic sea surface temperatures.

A team of researchers from the U.S. Geological Survey, University of Wyoming and Middlebury College (Vermont) analyzed precipitation changes occurri
'"/>

Contact: Julio Betancourt
jlbetanc@usgs.gov
520-670-6821
United States Geological Survey
14-Feb-2003


Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Researchers determine genetic cause of Timothy syndrome
2. Researchers find color sensitive atomic switch in bacteria
3. Schepens Eye Research Institute receives Roadmap grant to develop center for curing eye diseases
4. Researchers identify protein promoting vascular tumor growth
5. Researchers devise potent new tools to curb ivory poaching
6. Researchers create nanotubes that change colors, form nanocarpet and kill bacteria
7. Researchers ID chlorophyll-regulating gene
8. Environmental issues center of Inland Northwest Research Alliance 4th Annual Symposium
9. Research suggests new avenue for stopping, preventing colon cancer
10. Researchers develop fast track way to discover how cells are regulated
11. Research on carbohydrate metabolism receives historical recognition

Post Your Comments:
(Date:7/24/2014)... over a 35 year period in which the human ... humans on declining animal numbers. This decline matters because ... crustaceans, slugs and worms bring to our day-to-day lives, ... nutrient cycling, water filtration and human health. , The ... UCL, Stanford and UCSB, focused on the demise of ...
(Date:7/24/2014)... on different species of fish, according to a ... Exeter which tested fish anti-predator behaviour. , ... predator model when exposed to additional noise, whereas ... , Lead author Dr Irene Voellmy of Bristol,s ... many aquatic environments have increased substantially during the ...
(Date:7/24/2014)... study has identified two factors that characterize sustainable ... production of highly qualified physics teachers. Specifically, one ... physics teacher education in combination with institutional motivation ... viable. Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) teacher ... study points the way for institutions seeking to ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):Invertebrate numbers nearly halve as human population doubles 2Invertebrate numbers nearly halve as human population doubles 3Creating sustainable STEM teacher preparation programs 2
(Date:7/24/2014)... 2014  ECC West Africa, LLC (ECC) signed a ... University College Hospital (UCH) Ibadan Board of Management for ... design, construct, and operate and maintain a new, state-of-the-art ... Under the first of the 4-phase project, ECC will ... applications. UCH Ibadan intends to finance and develop the ...
(Date:7/24/2014)... rely on sophisticated equipment, trained personnel, and detection ... against terrorist attacks. A revolutionary new electronic chip ... their job much easier. , The groundbreaking nanotechnology-inspired ... Aviv University ,s School of Chemistry and Center ... Herzliya company Tracense, picks up the scent of ...
(Date:7/24/2014)... A research team led by group leader Yung-Eun ... technology to synthesize sulfur-doped and nitrogen-doped graphenes which ... secondary batteries and fuel cells. Yung-Eun Sung is ... Nanoparticle Research at Institute for Basic Science* (IBS) ... , This achievement has great significance with regards ...
(Date:7/24/2014)... Quantum computers have yet to materialise. Yet, scientists ... making such computers faster. One such approach relies ... controlled by applying an electric field. A new ... coherently coupled quantum dots (TQDs) with electrical impulses ... for example, should TQDs be used as quantum ...
Breaking Biology Technology:ECC Signs a Contract for the Finance, Design, and Construction of a Premier Cancer Institute in Ibadan, Nigeria 2Nano-sized chip 'sniffs out' explosives far better than trained dogs 2
Cached News: