July 18, 2012--How droughts will reshape the United States (Washington Post)

More than half of the continental United States is currently suffering through the worst drought in 50 years, with heat and a lack of rain rippling through the middle of the country. Crops are wilting, soils are cracked, and some dried-out forests are catching fire. U.S. corn production in particular is dwindling. So is this a glimpse at our hotter, drier future? It might be. While severe dry spells can and do occur naturally, a few recent U.S. droughts have been tentatively linked to the broad-scale warming of the planet. And if greenhouse gas emissions keep rising and temperatures keep ticking upward, scientists say, we can likely expect more serious and persistent droughts in the years ahead.

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