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Science. 2007 Jul 13;317(5835):233-5. Epub 2007 May 31.

How much more rain will global warming bring?

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  • 1Remote Sensing Systems, 438 First Street, Santa Rosa, CA 95401, USA.


Climate models and satellite observations both indicate that the total amount of water in the atmosphere will increase at a rate of 7% per kelvin of surface warming. However, the climate models predict that global precipitation will increase at a much slower rate of 1 to 3% per kelvin. A recent analysis of satellite observations does not support this prediction of a muted response of precipitation to global warming. Rather, the observations suggest that precipitation and total atmospheric water have increased at about the same rate over the past two decades.

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