More severe and widespread UK droughts expected with climate change
UK droughts are projected to be more severe and affect larger areas of the country over the next 100 years, according to a new study by Muhammad Rahiz and Prof. Mark New published in the journal Water Resources Management.
The team made a detailed analysis of regional climate data from the Met Office’s Hadley Centre to investigate future drought trends. “Both drought intensity and the spatial extent of droughts in the UK are projected by these climate models to increase into the future”, said Professor Mark New, Professor of Climate Science at the School of Geography and Environment and co-author of the study.
The findings of the study could have implications for the way water is managed, particularly in the South East, one of the most vulnerable regions. “If you have small, localised droughts, that’s not so important from a water management point of view, because most utilities can move water in from another place,” said Professor New. “But if a drought affects a whole region like the South East of England, then you’ve got a more significant problem.”
Read the full article on the Natural Environment Research Council website
Rahiz, M. and New, M. (2013) 21st Century drought scenarios for the UK. Water Resources Management, 27(4): 1039-1061.