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April Showers Bring May Flowers … But With Drizzles Or Downpours?

As spring finally arrives in typical Maryland style – downpours – people take comfort in these wet days by dreaming of the blooms that the rain nurtures. However, a new study by an Earth System Science Interdisciplinary Center researcher published in Nature Reviews Earth & Environment shows that whether rainfall comes as drizzle events or downpours matters for plant growth.

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Global shallow groundwater from 2003 to 2021. Credits: NASA

Warming Makes Droughts, Extreme Wet Events More Frequent, Intense

Scientists have predicted that droughts and floods will become more frequent and severe as our planet warms and climate changes, but detecting this on regional and continental scales has proven difficult. Now a new UMD and NASA study confirms that major droughts and pluvials – periods of excessive precipitation and water storage on land – have indeed been occurring more often.

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Are We Losing a Key Climate Change Buffer?

An international team led by researchers at the University of Maryland and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has created the most high-resolution maps to date showing changes in the pH of seawater since the Industrial Revolution began. Their study, published in the December 9, 2019 issue of the journal Nature Scientific Reports, suggests that the ocean’s capacity to continue absorbing carbon dioxide (CO2) from the atmosphere is diminishing.

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