Western drought getting weird


Western Drought Getting Weird

The drier things get, the more unexpected side effects emerge, like a hot sauce shortage, old bodies in barrels, and new fish in new places.

By Lauren Leffer for Gizmodo, July 15, 2022 10:40AM

[click thru to https://gizmodo.com/western-drought-us-2022-1849170530 for fascinating slideshow]

Screenshot: Gizmodo / Brad Pugh, NOAA + CPC

The western and southwestern U.S. is wilting under the biggest drought in 1,200 years—a megadrought. As of writing this, most of the country is experiencing drier-than-normal conditions, but things remain particularly severe from Texas into Oregon.

Scientists have identified climate change as a significant contributing factor to the extent and severity of droughts in general. And one study pegged about 40% of the current dry conditions in the Southwest on human-caused climate shifts.

We’re seeing the usual consequences of drought: water restrictions pop up, reservoirs hit record lows, wildfires spin out of control, and crops suffer. But the longer the West’s dry spell goes on, the more bizarre the drought-related stories get. Here are some of the oddest impacts happening or likely to happen so far.Start slideshow

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