Global warming is expected to lead to more and more droughts, but researchers say afforestation could help remedy the problem.

Afforestation of farmland could increase summer precipitation in Europe by an average of 7.6%, according to researchers from the Institute for Atmospheric and Climate Research at the Technical University of Zurich and Newcastle University through statistical analysis and modeling. The natural earth sciences According to a study presented in the scientific journal.

Previous studies have concluded that climate change could reduce the number and extent of precipitation over much of Europe in the coming years. The authors of the new research were curious about what would happen in Europe if they put more energy into afforestation.

To learn more about the impact of forest growth on weather and specifically rainfall, historical data was collected from various locations in Europe.

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[Meglepődtek a tudósok, amikor kiszámolták, milyen hatással voltak az atomrobbantások az időjárásra]

Next, data from rain gauges in forest areas were paired with data from agricultural areas with nearly identical characteristics. Then statistical analysis was performed and rainfall models were developed. They were used to see how rain could be affected, for example by reforestation of agricultural land.

The researchers found that more rain falls on forested areas than on agricultural areas. It has also been observed that wooded agricultural areas have resulted in increased rainfall both locally and in remote areas.

Based on this, the researchers say, if farmland is forested across Europe, more rain will fall across the continent, even if the planet continues to warm. According to their calculations, a 20% increase in European forests is needed to achieve this effect, he writes BBC.

[Reszkess, Európa: szélsőséges időjárás, erős áradások várhatók]

Scientists can’t explain why more rain falls on forests, but they think it may be related to the trees’ effect on moving air: they slow the flow of air, giving more time for rain to form.

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