The Washington PostThe Washington Post

Climate change caused catastrophic East Africa drought, scientists say

By Sarah Kaplan

27 Apr 2023 · 3 min read

Editor's Note

The Washington Post reports on research which found that human-caused climate change, is making drought in East Africa 100 times more likely than in an otherwise cooler world.

East Africa's worst drought in at least 40 years, which has displaced more than a million people and pushed millions more to the brink of famine, would not have happened if not for human-caused climate change, a network of extreme weather scientists said Thursday.

Rising global temperatures - largely from burning fossil fuels - have disrupted the weather patterns that typically bring rainfall to Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia, the scientists found. Last fall, the once-dependable rains failed for a record-setting fifth season in a row. Hotter conditions have also caused more moisture to evaporate from the landscape, desiccating croplands and causing millions of livestock to starve.

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