Precipitation trends determine how often droughts and heat waves will occur together

Read the full story from the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research – UFZ.

Prolonged droughts and heat waves have negative consequences both for people and the environment. If both of these extreme events occur at the same time, the impacts, in the form of wild fires, tree mortality or crop losses — to name a few examples — can be even more severe.

Climate researchers have now discovered that, assuming a global temperature increase of two degrees in the course of global warming, the future frequency of these simultaneously occurring extreme events is primarily determined by local precipitation trends. Understanding this is important, since it enables us to improve our risk adaptation to climate change and our assessment of its consequences, according to the researchers.

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