The Sprigg Geobiology Centre, The Environment Institute and the Centre for Tectonics, Resources and Exploration present Professor Jonathan Overpeck, Departments of Geosciences and Atmospheric Sciences, University of Arizona, USA and visiting VCCCAR Fellow and Visiting Professor, School of Earth Sciences, University of Melbourne, on Friday 14 June 2013.
The presentation is titled ‘Assessing Future Drought and Megadrought Risk’ and examines the increased risk of droughts with climate change and how humans can mitigate the risk.
When: Friday 14 June
Time: 3pm – 4pm
Where: Mawson Lecture Theatre, North Terrace Campus, The University of Adelaide (map)
Increased drought risk is (and will be) arguably one of the most certain and troubling aspects of anthropogenic climate change for many parts of the world. At the same time, it is emerging in the scientific literature that state-of-the-art climate and Earth system models are not able to simulate the full range of drought, whether decade-scale droughts like seen recently in both the SW US, and Australia, or multidecadal “megadroughts” that eclipse droughts of the instrumental era in both duration and severity. Evidence for this assertion will be examined, particularly as it comes from the paleoclimatic record of several continents, in both semi-arid and wetter regions. The implications for decision-making will also be discussed, including the on-going operational use, in the United States, of no-regrets drought planning strategies that incorporate paleoclimatic data. Fortunately, because droughts will still occur for natural reasons as well as anthropogenic, increased drought preparedness is a clear “no-regrets” climate change adaptation strategy.