A Stanford University study shows the coolest summers 20 years from now will be hotter than the hottest summers of the past 50 years, challenging agricultural crops in North America.
The hot summers ahead caused by the increasingly higher pattern of greenhouse-gas concentrations was measured with more than 50 climate model experiments, including computer simulations, according to the Stanford (University) Report. The extreme temperature shifts would hit middle latitudes of Europe, China and North America within the next 60 years. The hotter temperatures would hamper corn and soybean yields by up to 30 percent.
Noah Diffenbaugh, an assistant professor at Stanford, said historical data were collected and revealed the projected emergence of unprecedented heat had already begun. Scientists expect tropical regions to experience the most dramatic changes first, but other areas will enter a new heat regime by 2070.
The new weather pattern will not only affect farmland, but also human health. Diffenbaugh noted Europe’s heat wave in 2003 that killed 40,000 people as an example.
The results of the study will be published later in June in the journal Climatic Change Letters.
Source: Stanford Report