The challenge of unprecedented floods and droughts in risk management

Author: Kreibich, Heidi; Van Loon, Anne F.; Schroter, Kai; Ward, Philip J.; Mazzoleni, Maurizio; Sairam, Nivedita; Abeshu, Guta Wakbulcho; Agafonova, Svetlana; AghaKouchak, Amir; Aksoy, Hafzullah; Alvarez-Garreton, Camila; Aznar, Blanca; Balkhi, Laila; Barendrecht, Marlies H.; Biancamaria, Sylvain; Bos-Burgering, Liduin; Bradley, Chris; Budiyono, Yus; Buytaert, Wouter; Capewell, Lucinda; Carlson, Hayley; Cavus, Yonca; Couasnon, Anais; Coxon, Gemma; Daliakopoulos, Ioannis; de Ruiter, Marleen C.; Delus, Claire; Erfurt, Mathilde; Esposito, Giuseppe; Francois, Didier; Frappart, Frederic; Freer, Jim; Frolova, Natalia; Gain, Animesh K.; Grillakis, Manolis; Grima, Jordi Oriol; Guzman, Diego A.; Huning, Laurie S.; Ionita, Monica;…

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Effects of elevated CO2 on the growth, seed yield, and water use efficiency of soybean (Glycine max (L.) Merr.) under drought stress

Author: Li, Dongxiao; Liu, Huiling; Qiao, Yunzhou; Wang, Youning; Cai, Zhaoming; Dong, Baodi; Shi, Changhai; Liu, Yueyan; Li, Xia; Liu, Mengyu Description: This study aims to evaluate the effects of elevated carbon dioxide (EC) on soybean growth in the water-deficient region of Huang-Huai-Hai Plain, China. A pot experiment involving two CO2 concentrations (ambient, 380.1 ±32.2 µmol mol-1 and elevated, 740.6 ±45.4 µmol mol-1) and two water levels (normal and drought) were conducted in enclosed top chambers. The results showed that plant height, leaf area, and shoot dry weight were increased…

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Heat-shock-induced cross adaptation to heat, chilling, drought and salt stress in maize seedlings and involvement of H2O2

Author: Gong, M.; Chen, Bo.; Li, Z.-G.; Guo, L.-H. Description: A heat-shock pretreatment at 42 °C for 4 h followed by a 4-h recovery significantly enhanced survival rates of seedlings from two varieties of maize that differ in stress resistance. The procedure mitigated electrolyte leakage of primary roots and alleviated vitality loss of coleoptiles under severe heat, chilling, drought and salt stress, indicating that heat-shock pretreatment can induce cross adaptation. The heat-shock pretreatment, that induced cross adaptation, also produced an endogenous H2O2 peak in maize seedlings. Exogenous H2O2 treatments simultaneously…

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Physical Understanding of Human-Induced Changes in U.S. Hot Droughts Using Equilibrium Climate Simulations

Author: Cheng, Linyin; Hoerling, Martin; Liu, Zhiyong; Eischeid, Jon Description: Although the link between droughts and heat waves is widely recognized, how climate change affects this link remains uncertain. Here we assess how, and by how much, human-induced climate change affects summertime hot drought compound events over the contiguous United States. Results are derived by comparing hot drought statistics in long simulations of a coupled climate model (CESM1) subjected to year-1850 and year-2000 radiative forcings. Within each climate state, a strong and nonlinear dependency of heat-wave intensity on drought severity…

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Greater Temperature and Precipitation Extremes Intensify Western U.S. Droughts, Wildfire Severity, and Sierra Nevada Tree Mortality

Author: Crockett, Joseph L.; Westerling, A. Leroy Description: Extensive drought in the western United States (WUS) during the twenty-first century and associated wildfire and tree mortality incidence has highlighted the potential for greater area of severity within widespread droughts. To place recent WUS droughts into a historical context, the authors analyzed gridded daily climate (temperature, precipitation, and climatic water deficit) data to identify and characterize the spatiotemporal evolution of the largest WUS droughts of the last 100 years, with an emphasis on severe cores within drought extents. Cores of droughts…

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Large contribution from anthropogenic warming to an emerging North American megadrought

Author: Williams, A. Park; Cook, Edward R.; Smerdon, Jason E.; Cook, Benjamin I.; Abatzoglou, John T.; Bolles, Kasey; Baek, Seung H.; Badger, Andrew M.; Livneh, Ben Description: Severe and persistent 21st-century drought in southwestern North America (SWNA) motivates comparisons to medieval megadroughts and questions about the role of anthropogenic climate change. We use hydrological modeling and new 1200-year tree-ring reconstructions of summer soil moisture to demonstrate that the 2000-2018 SWNA drought was the second driest 19-year period since 800 CE, exceeded only by a late-1500s megadrought. The megadrought-like trajectory of…

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Virus infection improves drought tolerance

Author: Xu, Ping; Chen, Fang; Mannas, Jonathan P.; Feldman, Tracy; Sumner, Lloyd W.; Roossinck, Marilyn J. Description: Viruses are obligate intracellular symbionts. Plant viruses are often discovered and studied as pathogenic parasites that cause diseases in agricultural plants. However, here it is shown that viruses can extend survival of their hosts under conditions of abiotic stress that could benefit hosts if they subsequently recover and reproduce. Various plant species were inoculated with four different RNA viruses, Brome mosaic virus (BMV), Cucumber mosaic virus (CMV), Tobacco mosaic virus and Tobacco rattle…

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Increasing drought and diminishing benefits of elevated carbon dioxide for soybean yields across the US Midwest

Author: Jin, Z., Ainsworth, E. A., Leakey, A. D. B., & Lobell, D. B. Description: Elevated atmospheric CO2 concentrations ([CO2 ]) are expected to increase C3 crop yield through the CO2 fertilization effect (CFE) by stimulating photosynthesis and by reducing stomatal conductance and transpiration. The latter effect is widely believed to lead to greater benefits in dry rather than wet conditions, although some recent experimental evidence challenges this view. Here we used a process-based crop model, the Agricultural Production Systems sIMulator (APSIM), to quantify the contemporary and future CFE on…

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Termites mitigate the effects of drought in tropical rainforest

Author: Ashton, L. A., Griffiths, H. M., Parr, C. L., Evans, T. A., Didham, R. K., Hasan, F., Teh, Y. A., Tin, H. S., Vairappan, C. S., & Eggleton, P. Description: Termites perform key ecological functions in tropical ecosystems, are strongly affected by variation in rainfall, and respond negatively to habitat disturbance. However, it is not known how the projected increase in frequency and severity of droughts in tropical rainforests will alter termite communities and the maintenance of ecosystem processes. Using a large-scale termite suppression experiment, we found that termite…

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Reducing vulnerability of rain-fed agriculture to drought through indigenous knowledge systems in north-eastern Ghana

Author: Kanchebe Derbile, E. Description: Purpose — The purpose of this paper is to analyze how farmers are reducing vulnerability of rain-fed agriculture to drought through indigenous knowledge systems (IKS) in the Atankwidi basin, north-eastern Ghana. Design/methodology/approach: This paper draws on combined qualitative and quantitative research methods and data. First, the paper draws on qualitative data generated from in-depth interviews and focus group discussions from purposively sampled farmers in the Atankwidi basin. It also draws on a survey conducted on 131 systematically and randomly sampled households in three communities of…

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