Asian monsoon failure and megadrought during the last millennium

Edward R. Cook, Kevin J. Anchukaitis, Brendan M. Buckley, Rosanne D. D'Arrigo, Gordon C. Jacoby, William E. Wright

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

829 Scopus citations

Abstract

The Asian monsoon system affects more than half of humanity worldwide, yet the dynamical processes that govern its complex spatiotemporal variability are not sufficiently understood to model and predict its behavior, due in part to inadequate long-term climate observations. Here we present the Monsoon Asia Drought Atlas (MADA), a seasonally resolved gridded spatial reconstruction of Asian monsoon drought and pluvials over the past millennium, derived from a network of tree-ring chronologies. MADA provides the spatiotemporal details of known historic monsoon failures and reveals the occurrence, severity, and fingerprint of previously unknown monsoon megadroughts and their close linkages to large-scale patterns of tropical Indo-Pacific sea surface temperatures. MADA thus provides a long-term context for recent monsoon variability that is critically needed for climate modeling, prediction, and attribution.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)486-489
Number of pages4
JournalScience
Volume328
Issue number5977
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 23 2010
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General

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