For years climate change stories (including mine) have warned that precipitation extremes will increase as the planet heats up. Extra warmth allows the atmosphere to hold more water, producing deluges like we’re seeing in Vermont and western New Hampshire, but it also dries out the land more quickly when rain isn’t falling, producing more instant droughts.
Skeptics have long scoffed at this argument saying you can’t have it both ways – drier and wetter – but unfortunately you can. The New Hampshire Bulletin takes a look at the topic because of the floods (story is here). This is a key paragraph:
Peter Girard, vice president of communications for Climate Central, a nonprofit organization that communicates climate change science, effects, and solutions, said historical data analysis for the city of Concord, for example, shows approximately 22 percent more rainfall over the last 40 or 50 years during the hours when rain happens, meaning rain is heavier and falling with more intensity.
The saying “when it rains, it pours” is truer than ever.