1. Home
  2. Agriculture World

Climate Change-Induced Heat Worsens Argentina's Drought

Extremely high temperatures in Argentina linked to climate change exacerbated the impact of a historic drought that has ravaged the South American country's farmlands since last year, scientists said in a report released recently.

Shivam Dwivedi
Drought has devastated soy, corn, and wheat crops in the country
Drought has devastated soy, corn, and wheat crops in the country

According to scientists affiliated with the World Weather Attribution (WWA) group, a quick analysis revealed that climate change did not directly reduce rainfall, but that high temperatures likely reduced water availability and exacerbated the effects of drought.

Drought has devastated soy, corn, and wheat crops in the country, which is the world's top exporter of soy oil and meal and the third largest exporter of corn, causing harvest forecasts to be drastically reduced. Drought has also struck Uruguay, the country's smaller neighbour.

The lack of rain is due to the presence of the La Nia climate phenomenon, which causes the equatorial Pacific to cool, reducing rainfall in parts of Argentina. The extreme temperatures, according to WWA scientists, are a result of global warming.

"The region is also experiencing intense heatwaves, which have increased in frequency, intensity, and duration as a result of climate change," the WWA said in a report.

Last week, much of Argentina's agricultural area was hit by a new heat wave that lasted several days and quickly depleted precipitation that had fallen in late January and February in areas that were in desperate need of water after last year's hot weather.

"In the models, higher temperatures in the region in late 2022, which have been attributed to climate change, decreased water availability," the WWA stated. "(This suggests) that climate change reduced water availability during this time period, increasing agricultural drought, though the study was unable to quantify this effect."

International No Diet Day 2024 Quiz Take a quiz
Share your comments
FactCheck in Agriculture Project

Subscribe to our Newsletter. You choose the topics of your interest and we'll send you handpicked news and latest updates based on your choice.

Subscribe Newsletters