Photo: Ali Nishan
Climate change will likely lead to more powerful rainstorms, says a new study published in Science. Computer models may “substantially” underestimate the number of heavy rainfalls that will occur in a warming world, say scientists who researched naturally occurring weather events during El Niño patterns between 1987 and 2004. “A warmer atmosphere contains larger amounts of moisture which boosts the intensity of heavy downpours,” explains coauthor Brian Soden. Those deluges won’t give relief to desert regions but will happen in rainy areas, say researchers, increasing the chance of flooding, crop damage, erosion, and spread of infectious disease.