The Stream, August 10: Incomplete Drought Recovery May Be New Global Norm

The Global Rundown

Rising rivers in Venezuela have forced hundreds from their homes. The United Kingdom braces for a month’s worth of rain in a single day. Incomplete drought recovery may be the new global norm, according to research by the Carnegie Institution for Science. The Atlantic hurricane season is expected to be “above average,” with potential for 19 major storms. The “flash drought” spreading throughout the western United States could cost farmers up to $1 billion.

“If we get some rain we’ll have some corn and soybeans, but at this point it doesn’t look very promising.” –Farmer John Weinand in reference to the crop failure he is experiencing as a “flash drought” threatens agriculture in Montana, North Dakota, and South Dakota. The drought developed unexpectedly over the last three months and could cost farmers up to $1 billion. Independent  

By The Numbers

15,000 Number of Venezuelans affected by flooding after several days of intense rain. Overflowing rivers have forced at least 500 people to leave their homes. Reuters

80 Millimeters of rain expected in certain parts of the United Kingdom over the next 24 hours, as of Wednesday afternoon. Heavy rains have already left up to a metre of standing water in parts of Withernsea and caused flash floods elsewhere in the country. The Guardian

Science, Studies, And Reports

Research from the Carnegie Institution of Science indicates that incomplete drought recovery may be the new normal for the remainder of the 21st century. The report predicts that droughts will last longer and cover more land area in upcoming years, leaving ecosystems unable to ever fully recover from dry spells. Science Daily

On The Radar

The National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration is predicting an “above-average” Atlantic hurricane season, with 14 to 19 named storms likely to develop. The most active phase of the season will begin around August 20th and last six weeks. Bloomberg